I have always been an avid consumer of speculative fiction in all forms and format, and recently a writer, too. Therefore it’s always painful when magazines you love go into hiatus – temporary or permanent. In this first month of 2017 a few have gone this way. I post this not only for fellow SFF&H writers but also for readers, which might find odd not to receive new stories/announcement any longer in their mailbox.
Fantastic Stories of the Imagination
Guys, I *loved* this one, even if I’ve never managed to sell them anything (I only came close once). But I read it regularly and at some moment I’ve even supported it on Patreon – because the quality and the flavour of the stories was really magnificent, with excellent authors, both famous names and new writers at their first pro sale.
The editorial gave the announcement on 18 January: “It’s with deep regret that I announce the closing of Fantastic Stories of the Imagination. The January issue will be our final regular issue and the People of Color Take Over issue will be our final issue. I’m really proud of the body of work that we produced at Fantastic. There are a number of reasons that now is the time for me to close the webzine.”
I’m not sure what will happen with the website, but back issues are available here.
Interfictions – A Journal of Interstitial Art
This was the second closure that saddened me a lot. While this journal was not on my everyday reading list, I had the time to know and appreciate it, and looking at their goodbye note put me in a gloomy mood. Archives are available here, and I really suggest you bookmark it. It is worth every minute of your time.
The other two (New Zenith; Fiction Silicon Valley) are a different story, being a sort of new kids in the block. The first one only published two issues (apart from free stories on the website) and the second one, well, not even that. I only knew about it thanks to Duotrope and the discussions in my FB writers group. I still wonder what has happened in this case – because the ideas and the philosophy behind it seemed interesting enough to keep it going.
Whatever the truth, all these things have proved me something else, in case I needed any convincing (not really; I work in a business school even though I’m not a business&management person. But I know the antics, and the doctrine and so on): publishing is a business like anything else. If as a writer you can ignore – up to a certain point – hard realities, as a publisher you simply can’t.
And there’s a lesson for readers, too. If you really love a zine, go buy a subscription. Generally it’s not expensive, and it’ll make sure you can keep reading it. As a matter of fact, today I’m doing just that.
[Btw: in case this was not enough, I’ve discovered even Word Riot – a delightful venue for literary fiction – is on hiatus. Mala tempora…]