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Editor’s Note for the July/August Issue

An editor’s note for the July/August issue seems almost redundant because this includes one of my rare editorials, just the third since I took over the magazine. (There’s a link to it down in the Table of Contents below.) On the other hand, some things have changed so much since I wrote it just over two months ago that rereading it today feels almost like traveling in a time machine to the distant past.

So I’ll let that stand on its own and tell you about the rest of the new issue instead! Starting with where you can find it. Here in the U.S., many bookstores and newsstands are still closed, so if you can’t find us where you live, come find us where we live online.

If you’re not a subscriber and you’d like to subscribe right now, here are some links!

* Paper subscriptions here: https://www.sfsite.com/fsf/subscribe.htm
* Electronic subscriptions via Weightless Books anywhere in the world here: https://weightlessbooks.com/category/publisher/spilogale-inc/
* Electronic subscriptions for Kindle US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004ZFZ4O8/
* Electronic subsriptions for Kindle UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B004ZFZ4O8/

You can also buy single copies of this issue:

* Paper copies from our website
* Electronic copies, available worldwide and in every electronic format, from Weightless Books, starting July 1.

Fantasy & Science Fiction, July/August, cover by Alan M. Clark

ALL HAIL THE PIZZA KING
AND BLESS HIS REIGN ETERNAL

Alan M. Clark‘s disturbing cover art (because, let’s face it, who wants stanky demon feet treading on the stones where your pizza’s going to cook?) illustrates “All Hail the Pizza King and Bless His Reign Eternal,” a new novelet by David Erik Nelson.

Three years ago, in our July/August 2017 issue, David Erik Nelson also had the cover story, that time with his novella “There Was a Crooked Man, He Flipped a Crooked House,” which readers are still sending us messages to tell us how much they loved it. His other stories for us include “The Traveling Salesman Solution” and “Whatever Comes After Calcutta.” Like any good pizza place, this new story delivers.

MORE GREAT FICTION

Let’s talk about fantasy. M. Rickert is here to escort us to “Last Night at the Fair.” James Morrow shares one of his “Bible Stories for Adults, No. 37: The Jawbone.” John Kessel explores being haunted and finding balance with “Spirit Level.” And Stephanie Feldman leads us to an unusual portal at the end of “The Staircase.”

Or we can talk about science fiction. Bennet North returns to our pages after a long absence with her space elevator story, “A Bridge from Sea to Sky.” Madeleine Robins mixes Pygmalion with R.U.R. to present us with “‘Omunculus.” And Brian Trent takes us to Mars to introduce us to “The Monsters of Olympus Mons.”

But we’d really like to talk about four writers making their F&SF debuts. Rati Mehrotra shows us that even spaceships can have a sense of humor, or at least try to, with “Knock, Knock Said the Ship.” Ana Hurtado invites us to Venezuela with “Madre Nuestra, Que Estás en Maracaibo.” Mel Kassel brings us along to a family’s summer outing at the lake so we can see “Crawfather” for ourselves. And World Fantasy Award winner Natalia Theodoridou joins us with a story about climate change and “The Shape of Gifts.”

We also don’t want to forget Mary Soon Lee, who offers up a sparkling bit of poetry with “A Quartet of Alphabetic Bubbles.”

Plus we have all our usual columns and features, which you can find linked in the Table of Contents below.

Enjoy!

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

THE MAGAZINE OF FANTASY & SCIENCE FICTION
July/August
71st Year of Publication

NOVELETS

“Spirit Level” – John Kessel
“All Hail the Pizza King and Bless His Reign Eternal” – David Erik Nelson
“‘Omunculus” – Madeleine Robins
“The Monsters of Olympus Mons” – Brian Trent

SHORT STORIES

“Knock, Knock Said the Ship” – Rati Mehrotra
“Last Night at the Fair” – M. Rickert
“Bible Stories for Adults No. 37: The Jawbone” – James Morrow
“Madre Nuestra, Que Estás en Maracaibo” – Ana Hurtado
“A Bridge from Sea to Sky” – Bennett North
“Crawfather” – Mel Kassel
“The Staircase” – Stephanie Feldman
“The Shape of Gifts” – Natalia Theodoridou

POEMS

“A Quartet of Alphabetic Babbles” – Mary Soon Lee

DEPARTMENTS

Editorial by C.C. Finlay
Books to Look For by Charles de Lint
Musing on Books by Michelle West
Film: Darkness Visible by David J. Skal
Science: What the Heck is an Analemma by Jerry Oltion
Curiosities: The Contaminant by Leonard Reiffel (1978) by Thomas Kaufsek

Cartoons by Arthur Masear, Arthur Masear, Danny Shanahan, Kendra Allenby, Nick Downes, Nick Downes

Cover: By Alan M. Clark for “All Hail the Pizza King and Bless His Reign Eternal”

LET US KNOW WHAT YOU THINK

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

Editor’s Note for May-June 2020

The May/June issue of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction will take you into the near future, the almost recent past and the further past, across the galaxy, into other worlds, and reveal new parts of the world we already live in.

This is the spot where we usually tell you that you can find copies of the new issue in Barnes & Noble stores and at many local independent booksellers, but, you know, global pandemic.

Bookstore and newsstand sales account for a quarter of more of the sales of our paper copies every issue. With storefronts shuttered to enforce social distancing, this means we’re taking a significant hit. More than ever we depend on our subscribers, whether it’s to the paper copy or one of our electronic editions. And so I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has a current subscription, a new subscription, or a recently renewed subscription to the magazine.

If you’re not a subscriber and you’d like to subscribe right now, here are some links!

* Paper subscriptions here: https://www.sfsite.com/fsf/subscribe.htm
* Electronic subscriptions via Weightless Books anywhere in the world here: https://weightlessbooks.com/category/publisher/spilogale-inc/
* Electronic subscriptions for Kindle US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004ZFZ4O8/
* Electronic subsriptions for Kindle UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B004ZFZ4O8/

You can also buy single copies of this issue:

* Paper copies from our website
* Electronic copies, available worldwide and in every electronic format, from Weightless Books

Fantasy & Science Fiction, May/June, cover by Maurizio Manzieri

THE GREAT SHIP

Maurizio Manzieri‘s amazing cover art illustrates “Who Carries the World,” a new Great Ship story by Robert Reed.

For those of you familiar with the Great Ship already, it needs no introduction. For new readers, imagine a mysterious and derelict starship the size of a jovian planet wandering the empty reaches of space until humans discover it and set off on a galaxy-spanning voyage, filling the vessel’s vast caverns, oceans, and habitats of every kind with thousands of intelligent species. This is the premise that Robert Reed introduced with “The Remoras” in our May 1994 issue, and one that he has revisited in novels and stories ever since. A ship like that contains infinite stories. This is the latest.

MORE GREAT FICTION

Other science fiction in this issue includes “Hornet and Butterfly” by Tom Cool and Bruce Sterling, a story the authors describe as “what cyberpunk would look like if somebody had invented it in 2019 in Hong Kong.” Ray Nayler makes his F&SF debut with “Eyes of the Forest,” a fast-paced hard sf story about explorers on an alien planet. And Rich Larson returns to our pages with “Warm Math,” a clever variation on the Cold Equations dilemma.

This issue’s fantasy is anchored by another writer making their first appearance in the magazine. Holly Messinger’s novella “Byzantine” mixes history and fantasy and twisty political machinations with the Fall of Constantinople. Richard Bowes’s newest story for us, “In the Eyes of Jack Saul,” mixes history and fantasy from a different period of time — we’d tell you more, but we don’t want to spoil the surprises. Leah Cypess returns to our pages with “Stepsister,” a wonderful fairy tale inspired adventure. And M. Rickert goes to similar source material, but pushes it in a complete different direction to come up with “Another F*cken Fairy Tale.”

Some horror and humor round out the issue. Rebecca Zahabi (“It Never Snows in Snowtown,” F&SF Nov/Dec 2019) returns to our pages with another unsettling tale, “Birds Without Wings.” While Joseph Bruchac brings us “Indian Love Call,” another off-kilter adventure featuring Billy and Arlin, who previously appeared in “The Next to the Last of the Mohegans” (F&SF, Mar/Apr 2018).

Paul Di Filippo gives us a new Plumage from Pegasus column — “Faster, Publisher! Binge! Binge!” We also have poems by Mary Soon Lee and Jane Yolen. And the print edition also includes cartoons by Kendra Allenby, Bill Long, and Arthur Masear.

THIS MONTH’S COLUMNS

This month we introduce a new Games column by Marc Laidlaw, where he takes a look at “Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice” and “A Plague Tale: Innocence.” Charles de Lint suggests some Books to Look For by Andrew Vachss, Wren Handman, Faith Erin Hicks, BR Kingsolver, and Margo Lanagan and Kathleen Jennings. James Sallis reviews new collections from Sarah Pinsker, Susan Palwick, and Kameron Hurley. Karin Lowachee’s film column looks at some South Korean cinema, including “Parasite.” Jerry Oltion’s science column takes a look at the impact of satellite proliferation. We announce the winners of F&SF Competition #99. And our Curiosities column takes a look at Hackenfeller’s Ape by Brigid Brophy (1953).

Enjoy!

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

THE MAGAZINE OF FANTASY & SCIENCE FICTION
May/June
71st Year of Publication

NOVELLA

“Byzantine” – Holly Messinger

NOVELETS

“Stepsister” – Leah Cypess
“Birds Without Wings” – Rebecca Zahabi
“Who Carries the World” – Robert Reed

SHORT STORIES

“Hornet and Butterfly” – Tom Cool and Bruce Sterling
“Eyes of the Forest” – Ray Nayler
“Warm Math” – Rich Larson
“An Indian Love Call” – Joseph Bruchac
“In the Eyes of Jack Saul” – Richard Bowes
“Another F*cken Fairy Tale” – M. Rickert

POEMS

“Mab’s Wedding” – Jane Yolen
“First Contact” – Mary Soon Lee

DEPARTMENTS

Books to Look For by Charles de Lint
Books by James Sallis
Plumage from Pegasus: Faster, Publisher! Binge! Binge! by Paul Di Filippo
Games by Marc Laidlaw
Film: The Disease of Class Divisions by Karin Lowachee
Science: Starlink, Star Junk by Jerry Oltion
Results of F&SF Competition #99
Curiosities: Hackenfeller’s Ape by Brigid Brophy (1958) by Paul Di Filippo

Cartoons by Kendra Allenby, Kendra Allenby, Bill Long, Arthur Masea

Cover: By Maurizio Manzieri

LET US KNOW WHAT YOU THINK

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

Editor’s Note for the November/December 2019 issue

The first thing we bought for this issue was the cover art by Bob Eggleton, a piece he titled “The Sky House.”
Fantasy & Science Fiction, November/December, cover by Bob Eggleton

From there, it was a matter of finding the right writer to pen a tale worthy of the illustration, and we turned to reader favorite (and ours, because we’re readers too) Charlotte Ashley, who’s most recent appearance in the magazine was another cover story, “The Satyr of Brandenburg,” back in our March/April 2018 issue. She turned in a tale that is as delightful as it is unexpected, and the perfect accompaniment to this castle in the sky.

The rest of the issue is a balance of fantasy, science fiction, and horror, with a couple stories that blur those boundaries or just make them altogether meaningless. The complete table of contents can be found below. Gregor Hartmann, Matthew Hughes, Michael Libling, James Morrow, M. Rickert, Benjamin Rosenbaum, Andy Stewart, and Marie Vibbert all return to the magazine, and we welcome Sam J. Miller and Rebecca Zahabi, who are making their F&SF debuts. Plus you’ll find a poem by Jane Yolen, columns by our usual assemblage of experts, and cartoons for the print edition.

Enjoy!

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

If you’re looking for a copy of this issue, you can find F&SF in most Barnes & Noble stores, as well as many local independent booksellers. You can also order a single copy from our website or buy an electronic edition from Amazon, AmazonUK, and — now, available worldwide and in every electronic format — through Weightless Books.

THE MAGAZINE OF FANTASY & SCIENCE FICTION
November/December
71st Year of Publication

NOVELETS

“How I Came to Write Fantasy” – Michael Libling
“The Joy in Wounding” – Charlotte Ashley
“A Geas of the Purple School” – Matthew Hughes
“Bird Thou Never Wert” – James Morrow
“The Vicious World of Birds” – Andy Stewart

SHORT STORIES

“Rejoice, My Brothers and Sisters” – Benjamin Rosenbaum
“Evergreen” – M. Rickert
“A Hand at the Service of Darkness” – Gregor Hartmann
“It Never Snows in Snowtown” – Rebecca Zahabi
“Knit Three, Save Four” – Marie Vibbert
“Shucked” – Sam J. Miller

POEMS

“Swing Between” – Jane Yolen

DEPARTMENTS

Books to Look For by Charles de Lint
Musing on Books by Michelle West
Television: Those Were the Days by David J. Skal
Science: Portable Power by Jerry Oltion
Curiosities: The Arrogant History of White Ben by Clemence Dane (1939)) by Paul Di Filippo

Cartoons by Nick Downes

Cover: “The Sky House” By Bob Eggleton

LET US KNOW WHAT YOU THINK

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

Editor’s Note for November-December 2018

Welcome to the 70th year of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction. Our November/December 2018 issue carries on the tradition of excellence with eleven new stories and a poem, plus all our regular columns and features.

Most of our electronic and paper subscribers have already received their issues, but if you’re looking for a copy you can find us in most Barnes & Noble stores, as well as many local independent booksellers. You can also order a single copy from our website or buy an electronic edition from Amazon, AmazonUK, and — now, available worldwide and in every electronic format — through Weightless Books.

Fantasy & Science Fiction, November/December 2018, cover by Alan M. ClarkThis month’s cover illustrates “The Iconoclasma” by Hanuš Seiner. The artwork is by the award-winning artist Alan M. Clark.

THE ICONCLASMA

Our cover story this month is something special. The Czech Republic has a strong tradition of science fiction, including the writer Karel Čapek (1890-1938), who invented the word robot for his 1920 play “R.U.R.”, and Josef Nesvadba (1926-2005), who had several stories published in F&SF during the 1960s.

Hanuš Seiner and his translator Julie Novakova are two of the latest writers to continue this tradition. Seiner is a professor of applied physics at the Czech Academy of Sciences in Prague. His fiction frequently mixes hard sf and space opera. American readers may be more familiar with the work of Novakova, an award-winning Czech novelist and translator, whose English language stories have been published in Asimov’s, Analog, and other magazines.

“The Iconoclasma” originally appeared in the April 2013 issue of the excellent Czech science fiction and fantasy magazine XB-1. We are excited to share it now with you.

MORE GREAT FICTION

“The Iconoclasma” isn’t the only piece of science fiction we have for this month. Sean McMullen offers “Extreme,” a near future adventure about a thrill seeker who gets more than he bargained for. Geoff Ryman returns to the magazine with “This Constant Narrowing,” a dark and harrowing story about intolerance set in another possible near future. Nina Kiriki Hoffman gives you a chance to read “Other People’s Dreams,” a story set in the far future where dreams are an art form. J. R. Dawson wants to take you to outer space, “When We Flew Together Through the Ice.” And Bo Balder continues to explore the evolution and interdependency of humans in their environments with her new story, “The Island and Its Boy.”

We also have some fantastic fantasy for you. Our lead story for the issue is “Thanksgiving” by Jeffrey Ford. How well do you really know the people you share your holidays with? Y. M. Pang makes her F&SF debut with “The Lady of Butterflies,” an adventure about memory and transformation. Abra Staffin-Wiebe wants to inform you about the “Overwintering Habits of the North American Mermaid.” Robert Reed offers up another tale in his Raven series, this one exploring “Every Color of Invisible.” And Nick DiChario has written an Italian fairy tale for you titled “The Baron and His Floating Daughter.”

Poet Ruth Berman also returns to our pages with “Escaping the Ogre.”

OUR OTHER COLUMNS AND FEATURES

Charles de Lint recommends some Books to Look For by Martha Wells, Charlaine Harris, Bryan Fields, and Jane Yolen, plus an anthology edited by Irene Gallo and a new Tolkien biography by Catherine McIlwaine. In his Books column, James Sallis offers indepth reviews of Astounding: John W. Campbell, Isaac Asimov, Robert Heinlein, L. Ron Hubbard, and the Golden Age of Science Fiction, by Alec Nevala-Lee and Figures Unseen: Selected Stories by Steve Rasnic Tem. And for our monthly Curiosities column, rediscovering lost writers and books, David Langford explores The Supernatural in Modern English Fiction by Dorothy Scarborough (1917).

In his latest film column, David J. Skal reviews “How to Talk to Girls at Parties,” based on the short story by Neil Gaiman that appeared in F&SF. In our science column, Jerry Oltion offers up a selection of “Space Drives: Real and Imaginary.” We have the winners of Competition #96, “Crime Blotter.” And the print version of the magazine also offers up cartoons by Nick Downes and Danny Shanahan.

LET US KNOW WHAT YOU THINK

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

Enjoy!

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

Editor’s Note for September-October 2018

Welcome to issue #739 of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, a prime number for another prime set of offerings. Our September/October 2018 volume celebrates the magazine’s 69th anniversary with eleven new stories and a poem, plus all our regular columns and features.

Most of our electronic and paper subscribers have already received their issues, but if you’re looking for a copy you can find us in most Barnes & Noble stores, as well as many local independent booksellers. You can also order a single copy from our website or buy an electronic edition from Amazon, AmazonUK, and — now, available worldwide and in every electronic format — through Weightless Books.

Fantasy & Science Fiction, September/October 2018, cover by Michael GarlandThis month’s cover illustrates “Powerless” by Harry Turtledove. The artwork is by the award-winning artist Michael Garland.

THE POWER OF THE POWERLESS

“While life, in its essence, moves toward plurality, diversity, independent self-constitution, and self organization, in short, toward the fulfillment of its own freedom, the post-totalitarian system demands conformity, uniformity, and discipline.”
– Vaclav Havel, “The Power of the Powerless”

It’s been more than a decade since Harry Turtledove appeared in our pages, and we’re glad to welcome him back with “Powerless,” a novelet inspired by Vaclav Havel’s famous essay dissecting “government by bureaucracy” and its tools of oppression. This alternate history may be set in Red Southern California instead of Cold War Eastern Europe, but that’s only because, as you’ll see, totalitarian systems can arise anywhere, at anytime… and so can resistance.

MORE GREAT FICTION

Our fantasy this month includes “Shooting Iron,” by Cassandra Khaw and Jonathan Howard, a story that takes everything you think you know about Western tropes and turns them on their heads. We fell in love the gunslinger Jenny Lim, and we think you will too. Yukimi Ogawa returns to our pages with “Taste of Opal,” an adventure story unlike any other we’ve read recently. We also thought it was a great example of the kishōtenketsu plot structure that has been reaching new audiences in recent years. Geoff Ryman brings us “Blessed,” a contemporary fantasy that takes place in Abeokuta, Nigeria, where the Aké Literary Festivals, named for the birthplace of Nobel Laureate Wole Soyinka, are held. And Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam, a Tiptree Award Honorable Mention and Nebula Award finalist, makes her F&SF debut with “The Men Who Come From Flowers,” a story that might disturb you but one that will definitely make you think.

This month’s selection of science fiction spans the spectrum of the genre. Regular F&SF contributor Brian Trent takes us to the near future and introduces us to “The Memorybox Vultures,” a twisty thriller that asks who owns our social media identities and what happens to them after we die. Jeremiah Tolbert makes his F&SF debut with “We Mete Justice With Beak and Talon,” another near future story where AI-equipped eagles hunt illegal drones. In “Suicide Watch,” Susan Emshwiller takes us to a future where companies offer Death Tours to profit from despair. And Sarina Dories returns to our pages with “Impossible Male Pregnancy: Click to Read Full Story,” a humorous tale ripped right from the clickbait headlines. But we also head off to outer space. Brenda Kalt shows us “The Gallian Revolt as Seen from the Sama-Sama Laundrobath” – everything you need to know is right there in the title. And Gregor Hartmann returns to the magazine accompanied by “Emissaries from the Skirts of Heaven,” a life-spanning story that’s part of his on-going series set around the planet Zephyr.

Poet Jeff Crandall also drops by to describe “What Loves You.”

OUR OTHER COLUMNS AND FEATURES

Charles de Lint recommends some Books to Look For by Juliet E. McKenna, Izzy Robertson, Alex Bledsoe, and Melissa F. Olson, and reviews Barry M. Malzberg’s new essay collection and A.D. Jameson’s I Find Your Lack of Faith Disturbing, about Star Wars and the triumph of Geek Culture. In her Books column, Elizabeth Hand offers indepth reviews of The Mere Wife by Maria Dahvana Headley and Strange Stars: David Bowie, Pop Music, and the Decade Sci-Fi Exploded by Jason Heller. And for our monthly Curiosities column, rediscovering lost writers and books, Mike Ashley visits A Prisoner in Fairyland by Algernon Blackwood, the 1913 novel that introduced the idea of the Starlight Express.

In his latest television column, Tim Pratt reviews the first two seasons of “The Good Place” before Season 3 premieres at the end of September. And in our science column, Jerry Oltion pokes at “The Telltale Vein,” exploring blood tests, how they work, and everything they can reveal. The print version of the magazine also offers up cartoons by Bill Long, Arthur Masear, and Kendra Allenby.

LET US KNOW WHAT YOU THINK

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

Enjoy!

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

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