Tales from the Museum of the Arcane

Out of the Vaults

Dr. Willoughby Thorne always wanted to work for the Smithsonian. Instead, he ended up the curator of the Museum of the Arcane, master (more or less) of three public floors and 772 vaults full of restless artifacts imbued with their own ideas of their place in history. Endowed with the accumulated might of the artifacts themselves, it is his job to keep them in line—and in their cases. Some can wreak disaster even by being good.

Aided by a museum staff that could kindly be called eccentric, Will fights to keep the objects from corrupting an unsuspecting public...even when the museum has other ideas!

Listen to "Wings of Hope," a story from the book about what happens when the Museum of the Arcane acquires the robe of St. Francis.

"I didn't want this to end, and you won't either."

"I tried to stretch this out, only two stories a day, but even then, it only lasts so long. I'm looking forward to the second reading, but treat yourself to the first run-through."

These stories were born out of a series of Short Story in a Week challenges at Other Worlds Writers' Workshop, which I helped to found way back in 1997.

The challenges involve writing stories around a list of five words submitted by the workshop members—in a week! The very first story to fall out in the universe of the Museum of the Arcane was "Welcome to the MA."

And the word that inspired it? Frankly, I had to look it up. And then I was enchanted, intrigued, and the story was off and running. The word was "zill."
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