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Editor’s Note for Jan/Feb 2017

It’s a new year and a new issue of The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, with brand new stories by Nina Kiriki Hoffman, Marc Laidlaw, Rachel Pollack, Robert Reed, Wole Talabi, and many more. We also have an important announcement about our science column.

The January/February edition of the magazine can be found in most Barnes & Noble stores, as well as many local independent booksellers. You can order a single copy from our website or buy an electronic edition from Amazon, AmazonUK, and — now, available worldwide and in every format — through Weightless Books.

Fantasy & Science Fiction, Jan/Feb 2017, cover by Charles VessThis month’s cover is by Charles Vess, illustrating “Vinegar and Cinnamon” by Nina Kiriki Hoffman. To see more of his work, visit his website at


Nina Kiriki Hoffman first appeared in the pages of Fantasy & Science Fiction in 1993 with “God Rest Ye, Merry Gentle Ghosts” and in the years since, we’ve been fortunate to share many of her stories with you. She returns this month with a new tale of family and magic, a story of “Vinegar and Cinnamon.”


Rachel Pollack brings us “Homecoming,” a new novella with Jack Shade — private investigator, occultist, and shaman. Jack Shade appeared previously in our pages with “Jack Shade in the Forest of Souls” (Jul/Aug 2012), “The Queen of Eyes” (Sept/Oct 2013), and “Johnny Rev” (July/Aug 2015). We also have a new novelet by Marc Laidlaw, who takes us to Castaway Books in Hawaii and open the pages on “Wetherfell’s Reef Runics” on a mystery that may be better left undisturbed.

The new year also begins with a wealth of science fiction. Nigerian-born writer and engineer Wole Talabi makes his F&SF debut with “The Regression Test,” a near future story about intelligences, both artificial and real. Gregor Hartmann takes us to outer space and “A Gathering on Gravity’s Shore,” another entry in the adventures of the writer Franden on the planet Zephyr. Rick Norwood brings us back to earth with a story about scientists discovering a new source of energy — an invention that can only go “One Way.” And Monica Byrne takes us on a long journey across time to “Alexandria.”

We also have two stories that skirt the edges of several genres. Debbie Urbanski makes her F&SF debut with a story “On the Problem of Replacement Children: Prevention, Coping, and Other Practical Strategies.” And reader favorite Robert Reed brings an unsettling story about “Dunnage for the Soul.”


Charles de Lint offers books to look for by Richard Kadrey, J. K. Rowling, Mark Henwick, Ursula K. Le Guin, and the interesting Uncollected Anthology project. James Sallis considers a new biography of Shirley Jackson. In our television column, Tim Pratt reviews the Netflix series “Stranger Things.” And for our Curiosities column, David Langford rediscovers Elmer Rice’s A Voyage to Purilia. There’s a new poem by Mary Soon Lee. Plus, flip through the pages and you’ll discover a pair of cartoons by Arthur Masear and Bill Long.


Pat Murphy and Paul Doherty have been writing their Science column for F&SF since 1997. Since 2002, the column has been running twice a year. Beginning with this issue, the F&SF Science column will run in every issue again, just like Isaac Asimov’s original science column. This is going to be a change in frequency but not total content: instead of running two 4,500 word columns every year, we’ll be running six 1,500 word columns instead.

We’re making the change for several reasons. Part of this is due to reader response — the feedback that we’ve received the past few years indicates that our readers really enjoy the science columns. Part of it is to allow Pat and Paul more flexibility: they’ll still be able to tackle some subjects in depth, by spreading out the topics over several issues, but they’ll also be able to do shorter columns on other topics when that’s appropriate too. And it’s a reaffirmation of F&SF‘s roots with Asimov’s original columns and a reflection of our commitment to fact-based reasoning and the importance of science in our culture.

The first few science columns from Pat and Paul in 2017 will cover some of the more unusual recent developments in robotics. In this issue, “Brainless Robots Stroll the Beach”.


We hope you’ll share your thoughts about the issue with us. We can be found on:

In the meantime… enjoy!

C.C. Finlay, Editor
Fantasy & Science Fiction | @fandsf


2 Responses to “Editor’s Note for Jan/Feb 2017”

  1. Louise Erdrich, LaRose, Hearts - Debbie Urbanski on January 11th, 2017

    […] note: I have a new story out in the January/February issue of Fantasy & Science Fiction, which is really huge for me, because….Ursula LeGuin has had stories published in that […]

  2. Pixel Scroll 3/29/17 “Scrolls! They Were Inwented By A Little Old Lady From Pixelgrad!” | File 770 on March 29th, 2017

    […] of Replacement Children: Prevention, Coping, and Other Practical Strategies” appeared in the Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, January/February 2017. Although you have to buy the issue to read it, the author interview about […]

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