The names have been connected to the stories.
And I won the competition by guessing 8 (out of 17) right.
To summarise, dear Watson:
--The ones I had correct:
MMM -- Delicious by Reggie Oliver
England and Nowhere by Tim Nickels
(Typically, these two were, for me, the hardest to guess. But I'm quite happy that Tim Nickels indeed wrote "England and Nowhere", which I rate very high indeed.)
Undergrowth by Mark Valentine
Red Velvet Dust by Ursula Pflug
(I was pretty certain of these two. However, I was also pretty certain of others that I had quite wrong.)
Blue Raspberries by kek-W
Berian Winslow and the Stream of Consciousness Fortune Teller by Dominy Clements
(Quite happy that I got those two right, as well. After "MMM -- Delicious" and "England and Nowhere" these were the second hardest to guess. And I love "Blue Raspberries".)
The Secret Life of the Panda by Nick Jackson
Upset Stomach by M. P. Johnson
(I was fairly sure of "Upset Stomach", and in retrospect am a little bit proud of my sleuthing for "The Secret Life of the Panda": also a very tough one. But then, of the remaining 9 I thought I was pretty much on the money. Those seven are now laughing...;-)
The ones I had wrong:
Word Doctor by Daniel Ausema
I thought it was Scott Edelman! Scott must have been laughing all the way to the bank -- that is, the same bank on which he sits with the panda, discussing his secret life and the fugly truth about the circus, like a stream of consciousness word doctor, eating delicious blue raspberries (mmm) until his stomach was upset, releasing a coughin torsion that plunged into the undergrowth like red velvet dust -- a nightmare to this reader, I tell ya.
The Awful Truth About the Circus by Scott Edelman
I thought it was Patricia Russo! That'll teach me to a) automatically assume that stories with a female protagonist most probably have a female author; and b) to assume that Scott writes mostly metafictional stories.
Ze egg is on ze face.
I'll buy you a drink in Denver, Scott!
Fugly by Patricia Russo
I was doubting between her and Ekatarina Sedia, and gambled wrong. Part of the game (I gambled correctly in two similar situations, so can't really complain). Congrats to Patricia for writing such a fine story.
The Coughin Coffin by Charles Black
I so expected this to be Steven Pirie. I wasn't the only one: two others thought the same thing. Against stereotype, Steven Pirie wrote something quite different. Good on him!
Terminus by S.D. Tullis
Which I so cleverly thought would be by Charles Black.
The Plunge by Brian Rappatta
And I attributed that one to Scott Tullis. Quite bad, as it now appears that Scott has *two* stories in Zencore! (that evil mastermind of a DFL tossing in a false anonymous to throw my blood hound off scent. What will he think of next?)
The Nightmare Reader by S.D. Tullis
And I attributed it to Brian Rappatta. If I had only made a last second switch, but the truth is that I was just guessing very hard, here.
Marie's Gift, the Stars and Frank's Pisser by Steven Pirie
I had really not even the faintest notion of who could have written that one (even after considerable sleuthing), so I threw in the towel and called it 'anonymous'. But it's Steven Pirie, and I'll congratulate him on writing a fine tale.
Torsion by Ekatarina Sedia
I guessed Daniel Ausema, and was wide off the mark. Again, here I am punished for assuming that a story with a male protagonist is written by a male author (a tactic that did pay off with other stories, but you just can't assume it all the time, of course. Which is definitely a good thing). Still, I'm quite happy that authors keep surprising me with their versatility.
Which brings us to "Cone Zero". My first tactic is to send Des a story for that one (hope I'll have one ready, as I'm way too busy now. Hopefully in the new year), thereby trying very hard to have myself automatically disqualified for the next guessing game.
Otherwise, dear Watson, we must sharpen our wits.