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Assorted magazines

(272 posts)

  1. digdug

    As regular readers are aware we ususally have a thread to discuss the current issues of F&SF, Analog and Asimovs.

    I thought I would create a new thread where we can discuss any other magazine issues that we have read.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  2. digdug

    I just finished reading Interzone - Issue #264 May-June 2016

    Interzone is published bi-monthly in England

    The most recent issue contains stories by
    James Van Pelt, Malcolm Devlin and Gwendoyln Kiste.

    Rich Larson also appears with a story called 'Lifeboat'
    Larson has burst on the scene and I've been seeing his name quite frequently lately. I've enjoyed every Larson story I've seen so far and 'Lifeboat' is no exception.

    Tyler Keevil also appears with 'Starlings'. This was a very strong story for me about a dying Earth and the struggle to survive. Highly recommended.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  3. digdug

    Just finished reading Clarkesworld - Issue 115 April 2016

    I had heard about Clarkesworld a few years ago and checked it out then. It seemed to be an online only magazine. I could find print copies of anthologies but no single issues. So, I moved on. Recently I noticed that you can now purchase print copies of individual issues of Clarkesworld so I ordered a few.

    This issue contains stories by Chen Qiufan, Gregory Feeley, Sarah Saab and Garth Nix.

    It also contains "Winter's Wife" by Elizabeth Hand which I found to be quite enjoyable.

    My fave story from the issue was "Touring With the Alien" by Carolyn Ives Gilman. Ms. Gilman has imagined a truly alien being. Congrats to her!

    Posted 4 years ago #
  4. digdug

    Just finished reading Clarkesworld - Issue 116 May 2016

    You can find read the stories at the link above or purchase print copies on Amazon.

    This issue contained stories by Cat Rambo and Cassandra Khaw that didn't really work for me.

    It also contained stories by Robert Reed, Rich Larson and Sunny Moraine that I enjoyed quite a bit.

    Each issue of Clarkesworld seems to contain one story that has been translated from Chinese. In this case the story was 'Away From Home' by Luo Longxiang. It is one part of a series and it is very interesting. It contains 'Planetships'. I enjoyed the story a lot and look forward to reading more stories from this series.

    I have heard of Joe Abercrombie from a couple of different people but had never read his work before. "Tough Times All Over" reminded me of Jack Vance or Matt Hughes and that is a good thing! I think I will be reading more of Mr. Abercrombie in the future.

    Now on to the next magazine. I would love for it to be the May/June issue of F&SF but, alas, that issue has not arrived at my home in Nova Scotia as of yet. (June 4th).

    Posted 4 years ago #
  5. digdug

    Just finished reading Galaxy's Edge #20 - May 2016

    You can read the stories at the link above or order a print copy at Amazon.

    Galaxy's Edge usually contains approximately half reprints from big name authors and half new stories from lesser known authors.

    I would be more excited about Galaxy's Edge if they were open to all authors. But unfortunately 'Galaxy's Edge does not accept unsolicited manuscripts. Participation is by invitation only. We will not respond to unsolicited submissions.'

    Anyways it is still an enjoyable magazine to read. This issue has a picture of George RR Martin on the cover and contains a very interesting interview with Mr. Martin. It also contains a relatively unknown Martin story called 'Fast-Friend'. In the interview Mr. Martin talks about his early success and mentions one month in the early 1970s when he had a story in the current issue of 3 magazines at one time. I'm guessing 'Fast-Friend' was submitted to all of the magazine editors during this timeframe and rejected by all of them. It was first published in an anthology edited by Dann & Zebrowski. GRRM is one of my favorite authors but this story is evidence that even the best authors can write a 'clunker'.

    My favorite stand-alone story in the issue was Tina Gower's "This Is Home. You Are Well." You can feel the main character's angst as she comes to a life changing decision.

    Leigh Brackett's "The Long Tomorrow" is also being serialized and I am quite enjoying this novel. It is far removed from her more famous adventuresome stories featuring Eric John Stark. It is much more serious and thoughtful but it is still very interesting.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  6. digdug

    Just finished reading Clarkesworld #85 - October 2013

    This issue contains 5 stories. Only one didn't work for me: Dale Bailey's "The Creature Recants" was not one the authors better efforts in my opinion.

    F&SF regular Naomi Kritzer also appears with 'Bits'. This is an amusing tale about alien sex toys. Julie Novakova and Gwyneth Jones are also on hand with strong stories.

    Unsurprisingly, my fave story from the issue was George RR Martin's " A Night at the Tarn House." It originally appeared in the anthology that was put together as a tribute to Jack Vance. It is a fine example of the wonderful stories that appeared in "Songs From the Dying Earth" which was edited by Martin and Dozois.

    Still haven't received the May/June F&SF yet so I am off to read and old issue of Science Fiction Quarterly from the 50's.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  7. digdug

    Just finished reading Science Fiction Quarterly - February 1953

    The best story by a long shot in this issue was Poul Anderson's "The Green Thumb". Not one of the authors best but still quite enjoyable.

    The only other story that rose above run-of-the-mill was Joe Gibson's "Dugal Was a Spaceman". It had enough nice touches mixed in with the hoary interplanetary intrigue plot to rise above the rest.

    The other stories by Abernathy, Christopher, Dye, Merrill and White were nothing to write home about. They weren't horrible just not really good either.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  8. digdug

    Just finished reading Clarkesworld #111 - December 2015

    This issue's Chinese story is "Yuanyuan's Bubbles" by Liu Cixin. I quite enjoyed this piece of whimsical SF.

    Seth Dickinson had a long story that I had trouble finishing. Similarly Tamsyn Muir's "Union" didn't make very much sense to me.

    I enjoyed Cassandra Khaw's emotional story about hope for humanity.

    My favorite story from the issue was Sean McMullen's "Technarion". I find Mr. McMullen produces a fine story almost every time. The only problem is that I had already read "Technarion" not too long ago. It was previously published in an issue of Interzone in 2013.

    Walter Jon Williams' "Daddy's World" also appeared in this issue of Clarkesworld and it was originally published in an anthology and even won the Nebula award in 2001. I had never read it before and I enjoyed it.

    I wish Clarkesworld would publish stories that had not been published in magazines before. Overall it was an enjoyable issue.

    Still have not received my May/June 2016 F&SF so I'm off to read an issue of 'Fantastic Universe' from the 1950s.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  9. digdug

    Just finished reading Fantastic Universe - March 1955

    When I started off this issue, I was really looking forward to reading a Jack Vance story I had never read before. Also, it was the longest story in the issue. So it should have been good. Unfortunately 'Meet Miss Universe' was pretty run of the mill. It had very few of the wonderful qualities that you will find in almost any other Vance story. Very disappointing.

    There were a fair number of other big name authors represented as well.
    James Blish
    Marion Zimmer Bradley
    Algis Budrys

    None of their stories really worked for me either.

    My fave story from the issue was Bryce Walton's "Jack the Giant Killer". Mr. Walton was a prolific author in the 50's and I remember some truly awful stories that were written by him, but this partiuclar story had a nice Orwellian vibe to it. Our hero is a nine year old boy who reported on his parents. Not a classic, by any stretch, but a nice cautionary tale.

    Overall a disappointing isseue.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  10. JohnWThiel

    I notice one of the tools at that link is "clone this pub". Very happy-go-lucky official site.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  11. digdug

    Just finished reading Ckarkesworld - #109 October 2015

    My fave story from this issue was G. David Nordley's "War, Ice, Egg, Universe". This is an amazing piece of work with alien aliens that reminds me of Vernor Vinge at his best. The only problem here is that this story was previously published in Asimov's in 2002 and I read it then. I vaguely remembered the crucial plot twist that happened at the end. It was enjoyable to read it again, but somewhat frustrating.

    Karen Heuler had a very strong story with "Egg Island". I had never read this author before but I will definitely be keeping an eye out for more stories from her. She came up with a powerful new-to-me way to combat post global warming problems. Highly recommended.

    Rich Larson also appears with a typically enjoyable story called "Ice".

    The rest of the stories were OK but didn't do much for me.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  12. digdug

    Just finished reading Clarkesworld #110 - November 2015

    Naomi Kritzer leads off the issue with a story that starts off as a cooking blog. I am the last person who would ever read a cooking blog but this story was very good, even though recipes did use up a fair portion of the story. Who knew you could bake chocolate chip cookies with mayonnaise being one of the main ingredients?

    Again, my fave story from the issue was previously printed in Asimov's. This time it was Tim Sullivan's "Way Down East".

    Overall it was a good issue.

    On to another issue of Fantastic Universe from the 1950s.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  13. JohnWThiel

    "Assorted magazines" still at the top, after fifteen hours, greeee...The topic's all right, but there's no new entry and nothing else has had a new entry, except maybe at the Camptown Races. Maybe this is what they meant when they said turn on, tune in, drop out. I visit this forum every day as part of my ritual progress through the net, and wish I could have the reward for stopping by of seeing more comments. I could reconsider what's already been posted, but we're in different time sectors.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  14. digdug

    Just finished reading Fantastic Universe - May 1959

    This issue contained a bunch of OK stories. None were terrible. None were great.

    My fave was Eric Frank Russell's "The Army Comes To Venus". In this case it's the salvation army. The story centers around a woman missionary setting up shop in a frontier town. Nothing special, but pretty good.

    Lloyd Biggle Jr. is one of my favorite old time authors and he appears here with a fun lightweight time travel story.

    Overall a less than stellar issue.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  15. digdug

    Just finished reading Satellite - March 1959

    Satellite started out as a digest in 1956 and switched to full size for four issues in 1959 before it died. It usually published one 'short novel' along with a few shorts.

    This issue contained a 'short novel' by John Christopher called "A World of Slaves". The story's main figure is a man from the twentieth century who wakes up after being cryogenically frozen. The town he was stored in has been deserted. The buildings are falling apart. He explores and finds that humans are alive and relatively well but they are dominated by cruel mechanical 'beings'. The story is reminiscent of "War of the Worlds" along with the author's own tripods trilogy beginning with the "The White Mountains". I very much enjoyed this novella.

    This issue also contains well done stories by Theodore Sturgeon, Stanley Mullen and Lloyd Biggle Jr.

    There are also stories by Ray Bradbury and Cordwainer Smith that I didn't enjoy as much, but I'm sure others would find them worthy.

    Overall, a very strong issue.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  16. digdug

    Just finished reading Omni - November 1978

    I read my first science fiction magazine in 1981. I loved it. I quickly branched out. I was reading every issue of F&SF, Analog and Asimov's. I started hunting up back issues and was reading Galaxy and Amazing as well.

    During this timeframe Omni was being published and well distributed. I never thought of it as an SF magazine and never read it.

    Sometime recently I was reviewing Hugo winning stories. I saw that "Sandkings" by George R.R. Martin won. Mr. Martin is one of my favorite authors and I thought I had pretty much read everything he had written, but I didn't remember "Sandkings". After checking I found that it was originally published in Omni. I decided to acquire a few issues to see what I had been missing.

    The Nov 1978 issue has four short fiction pieces insterspersed with many fact articles. Omni definitely feels more like a science magazine than an SF magazine. Some of the articles were interesting but I've found I can only enjoy fact articles in small doses. It wasn't enjoyable for me to read this issue. The four stories were all minor and really had nothing to recommend them. I don't think I will bother collecting all of the issues.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  17. Mark Pontin

    OMNI was really a mixed bag.

    Many of the early William Gibson shorts that made his name appeared there, for instance, and much else by others who were burning in the 1980s. And of course they got paid handsomely for it -- word-rate was orders of magnitude better than anywhere else except PLAYBOY. So quite a lot of the era's best short SF first appeared there, and occasionally you'd get an issue where a couple of what are now classics were in the mag.

    Simultaneously, the 'science' articles were generally not that good and mostly functioned as an excuse for the glossy art, and there'd be issues were the fiction would be minor, as you found.

    OMNI always _looked_ great, of course. I think it was OMNI's art budgets that was first to give way as the Guccione empire floundered.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  18. Mark Pontin

    By the way, you are aware that all of GALAXY and IF are now archived online?

    Plenty there to keep one occupied.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  19. Mark Pontin

    Better links --


    Posted 3 years ago #
  20. Mark Pontin

    And also IF

    Posted 3 years ago #
  21. digdug

    Those are cool sites!

    Thanks, Mark

    Posted 3 years ago #
  22. digdug

    Just finished reading - Clarkesworld - #117 June 2016

    Only one out of the six stories in this issue didn't work for me. That was 'Things With Beards' by Sam J. Miller.

    Zhang Ran's "The Snow of Jinyang" was basically a Chinese version of L.S. De Camp's "Lest Darkness Fall". A smart young man from the future gets stuck in the past and then tries to figure a way to get home. Along the way he invents an 'internet' that use chords of twine. Many funny comments follow. Any novel that throws a Led Zeppelin reference into ancient China gets a nod of respect from me. I enjoyed this story quite a bit.

    Margaret Ronald has an enjoyable story where SETI finally meets with some success.

    E. Catherine Tobler has another good story about an emerging AI.
    Michael Flynn appears with a good story that previously appeared in F&SF in 1995.

    The issue conlcludes with "Pathways" by Nancy Kress. This was another fine story that made me think about a lot of different things.

    A strong issue from the crew at Clarkesworld.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  23. digdug

    Just finished reading - Galaxy's Edge - #21 July 2016

    My fave story from this issue was Kij Johnson's "At the Mouth of the River of Bees". It originally appeared in Sci Fiction in 2003 and made it into a 'Years Best' collection but I had never read it before. It is a powerful contemporary fantasy.

    Leigh Brackett's novel "The Long Tomorrow" (1955) is being serialized and the things get more interesting in the latest installment. Looking forward to the next segment.

    Two stories from the 1970's that never appeared in magazines by legendary authors were also included. Robert Silverberg's "Capricorn Games" is an interesting study in debauchery.

    George R.R. Martin's "Starlady" is also an interesting view of how humanity might decay in the future.

    Nancy Kress appears with a new short cautionary tale and Laurie Tom has an interesting take on the 'timestop' type of story. Newcomer Nathan Dodge also appears with a short little gem.

    Unfortunately the other new fiction didn't do much for me.

    Overall a pretty good issue.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  24. digdug

    Just finished reading Interzone - #265 July/August 2016

    My fave story from the issue was John Schoffstall's "All Your Cities I Will Burn". It mixed up Meteor Gods with modern DNA sequencing ideas along with a traditional folk song. Somehow an entertaining story resulted.

    The issue includes new stories by Robert Reed and Suzanne Palmer. Two authors I have enjoyed in the past quite a bit. Unfortunately their stories left me short this time.

    There is also a very weird 'story' by Ken Hinckley entitled "On the Techno-Erotic Potential of Donald Trump Under Conditions of Partially Induced Psychosis". The rest of the 'story' reads remarkably like the title and makes just as much sense.

    Overall a disappointing issue.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  25. JohnWThiel

    It seems like that story would about trash out the issue.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  26. digdug

    Just finished reading - Clarkesworld #118 - July 2016

    I didn't like Eric Schwitzgebel's "Fish Dance". I found it hard to finish. Mike Buckley's "Helio Music" was even worse to my taste. Both stories were very hard to follow.

    John Chu's story wasn't really a conventional story at all. The major plot movements happened in the footnotes. I ended up liking this contribution quite a bit. I think I enjoyed it mostly because I'm a computer programmer and the main characters were also coders. I found parts of this quite funny. I'm curious if a non-programmer would also enjoy this story or not.

    A Que provided a time travel story about a marriage on the rocks. I enjoyed this one as well. I hadn't seen this partiuclar time gimmick before.

    Jack Schouten's "Sephine and the Leviathan" was also enjoyable. I will look for more from this author.

    As seems usual for Clarkesworld, I enjoyed the last two stories but I had read them before because they had appeared in Analog and Asimov's previously.

    Overall an OK issue.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  27. digdug

    Just finished reading - Clarkesworld #119 - August 2016

    My fave story from the issue was Dale Bailey's "Teenagers From Outer Space". It is set in the 1950's. It has a lot to say about what is 'human'.

    There were two stories I didn't enjoy by Kali Wallace and Ryan Row.

    Then there were five more stories that I liked a lot, and I had read only one of them before.

    Overall a strong issue.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  28. digdug

    Just finished reading - Clarkesworld #120 - September 2016

    My fave story from the issue was Rich Larson's "The Green Man Cometh".
    This one almost felt like a James Bond movie. We have the psycho villain bent on destroying the world matched up against our hero. In this case our hero is a heroine that is sharing her body with a government agent. This story is lots of fun.

    The only story I actively disliked was "Toward the Luminous Towers" by Bogi Takacs. I'm sorry, but I just didn't get the point of it at all.

    There was only one story I had read before, but it really irritated me this time. "No Placeholder For You My Love" appeared in Asimov's in August 2015. It's not a bad story but it wouldn't be high on my lists of stories to reread. Sigh.

    Overall an OK issue.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  29. digdug

    Just finished reading - Galaxy's Edge #22 - September 2016

    My fave story from the issue was NK Hoffman's "Marrow Wood". It was previously published in 2006 but I had never read it before. Our lonely protagonist finally finds what he has been hoping to find.

    Nancy Kress also appears with an excellent story that was previously published in Asimov's in 2011. She captures what it's like to be a loving big brother.

    The best of the new stories was Martin Shoemaker's Bookmarked. The main character is definitely not having fun.

    Eric Leif Davin's "In the Yucky Death Mountains" probably was supposed to be funny but I just found it stupid.

    Overall a good issue.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  30. digdug

    Just finished reading - Interzone #266 - September-October 2016

    This issue contained 5 stories. None of them were bad, but none of them were really good either.

    The most interesting was Ray Cluley's "Sideways". It had some insight into the life of a test pilot, but ultimately it didn't go anywhere.

    Overall a disappointing issue.

    Posted 3 years ago #

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