April 1926 — Hugo Gernsback, publisher of Electrical Experimenter science magazine, launched the first magazine devoted to science fiction — or what Gernsback liked to call “scientifiction.” Amazing Stories was published for almost 80 years, passing through the hands of a wide range of publishers (including, in the late 1990s, Wizards of the Coast). It debuted writers including Isaac Asimov and Ursula K. Le Guin, but the magazine suffered from uneven leadership, uneven quality, and controversial editorial policies. It ceased publication in 2005.
January 21, 2013 — Steve Davidson of Experimenter Publishing (note the company name) has re-launched Amazing Stories as a web community, with the goal of establishing a market that will enable him to revive the professional fiction magazine. Davidson, curator of the Classic Science Fiction Channel website and author of several books on paintball, spent three years obtaining the rights to the Amazing Stories name. He published two online issues of the magazine last year, as a proof of concept.
“Every genre fan now has a chance to help support the creation of a new market for the stories, artwork, and articles they all love so much,” Davidson said in a news release this morning.
At the core of the new site’s content are posts by a team of bloggers covering a wide range of science fiction-related topics. The site will offer product reviews, convention news and listings, and will take advertising.
I have more than just a science fiction reader’s interest in the revival of Amazing Stories. I’m going to be one of the bloggers for the site, writing primarily (but not exclusively) about my explorations of science fiction-related communities including gaming, girl geekdom, the Maker community, Steampunk, Browncoats, Discworld, and SF/mystery crossovers. Please come join us at Amazing Stories.
An ebook of David Levine’s short story collection, Space Magic, including his Hugo Award-winning story “Tk’Tk’Tk,” is out from Book View Café today. You’ll find it at amazon.com, in Apple’s iBookstore, at nook.com, and at the Book View Café online store.
This includes some of the finest speculative fiction I’ve read. David’s explorations of astonishingly imaginative “what if?” scenarios are precise, rigorous, and often deeply moving. Here’s the publisher’s blurb:
“This Endeavour Award-winning collection pulls together 15 critically acclaimed science fiction and fantasy stories that take readers from a technicolor cartoon realm to an ancient China that never was, and from an America gone wrong to the very ends of the universe. Including the Hugo Award-winning “Tk’Tk’Tk,” the Writers of the Future Award winner “Rewind,” “Nucleon,” “The Tale of the Golden Eagle,” and many other highly praised stories, Space Magic shows David D. Levine’s talents not only as a gifted writer but as a powerful storyteller whose work explores the farthest reaches of space as well as the depths of the human heart.”
The collection is $5.99, and the stories in it are available as individual ebooks for 99 cents each. Highly recommended.
Book View Café (“Because you can never have too many ebooks”) publishes works by Vonda N. McIntyre, Laura Anne Gilman, Jeffrey A. Carver, Phyllis Irene Radford, Linda Nagata, Chaz Brenchley, and many other speculative fiction, mystery, and romance authors. While you’re there, check out Chris Dolley’s Reeves & Worcester Steampunk mysteries, including What Ho, Automation!
For those of you who plan to publish a book, Kat Richardson’s insider’s view of book contracts is a must read.
It includes step-by-step advice for how to read a contract, and who to hire to read (or renegotiate) a contract for you.
While Kat is specifically talking to writers of genre fiction, I recognized quite a few elements that pertain to nonfiction contracts as well, including writing-for-hire.
It’s a long, substantive post. Grab a cup of coffee, and start reading.