About the Story by Isabel Fall

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 160 – January 2020

Yesterday, I removed the story “I Sexually Identify as an Attack Helicopter” by Isabel Fall from the current issue of Clarkesworld Magazine. The recent barrage of attacks on Isabel have taken a toll and I ask that even if you disagree with the decision, that you respect it. This is not censorship. She needed this […]

Editor's Desk: Staring at the Hole

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 159 – December 2019

This month’s editorial was supposed to be about my adventures at a pair of science fiction conventions in China, but it won’t be. I’m sitting on the floor of my house, blasting some music by Infected Mushroom, and trying to work out how to tell you the story of how none of that came to […]

Editor's Desk: Your 9AM Wakeup Call

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 158 – November 2019

For almost seven years now, I’ve been living with a mechanical friend who lives in my chest and  monitors my heart for any abnormal activity and who is prepared to zap me if necessary. Boxy, as my kids dubbed it, while reassuring, is a single-minded cyborg enhancement. When it was first discussed, I had asked […]

Editor's Desk: And into Year Fourteen We Go

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 157 – October 2019

October marks our thirteenth anniversary! To celebrate, we have a larger-than-normal issue this month, highlighted in part by a novella and an extra translation. Both works were made possible by a grant from LTI Korea. That funding has allowed us to substitute original Korean translations  in place of nine reprints in our 2019 schedule. We’re […]

Editor’s Desk: A Journey “Home”

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 156 – September 2019

When Dublin first announced its bid to host a Worldcon, something weird happened: my family’s ears perked up. My parents were born and raised in Ireland—Navan to be precise—and immigrated to the US in the 1960s. While my grandparents were still alive, we made regular pilgrimages “home” to visit family and I have many fond […]

Editor's Desk: One Hundred Thousand Titles

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 155 – August 2019

In April 2015, I wrote a blog post about the most popular titles submitted to Clarkesworld after its first fifty thousand submissions. We started using that system in 2009, so it took about six years. Just under four years later, we passed the one hundred thousand mark, so I decided to jump back into our […]

Editor's Desk: From the Moon to Magazines

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 154 – July 2019

I have two anthologies being published by Night Shade Books this month: The Eagle has Landed—a retrospective of lunar science fiction published since Neil Armstrong became the first person to set foot on the Moon—and The Best Science Fiction of the Year: Volume Four. Each project was a unique learning opportunity, one looking at history […]

Editor's Desk: Living Through the Solstice

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 153 – June 2019

Last month, I had the opportunity to attend the Nebula Conference run by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA). The conference was in Los Angeles this year, so after an early morning cross-country flight and a long drive through the never-ending LA traffic, I arrived at the hotel and settled in. Over […]

Editor's Desk: I Don't Want to Bother You

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 152 – May 2019

One of my favorite things about working in the science fiction field—even all the way back to my days as a bookseller—is the people I get to work with, be it staff, authors, artists, other editors, or fellow fans. Most days, I’m physically isolated from that world and as an introvert that actually works well […]

Editor's Desk: An International Journey

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 151 – April 2019

On more than a few occasions, I’ve been asked to explain my interest in international science fiction—and in particular—works in translation. With this month marking the publication of the first of nine translated South Korean stories in Clarkesworld, I thought it might be a good time to dig into that and explore our journey. Truth […]

Editor's Desk: A Celebration of Many Things

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 150 – March 2019

Our annual Reader’s Poll came to a close last month as six finalists for our best cover and story of 2018 competed against one another in a second round of voting. Each and every one of these works would have been a worthy winner. Finalists for Best Story “Dandelion” by Elly Bangs (September) “The Anchorite […]

Editor's Desk: Finalists, Translations, and Awards

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 149 – February 2019

There’s a lot to cover this month so I’m going to dive right in. We held a two-day nomination period for the Clarkesworld Magazine Reader’s Poll in January. Similar to last year, the shortened nomination phase appears to have minimized the attempts at ballot-stuffing without any significant impact on the total number of participants. It […]

Editor's Desk: 2018 Reader's Poll

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 148 – January 2019

It’s almost time to pick your favorite Clarkesworld story and cover art from 2018 in our annual reader’s poll! Last year, we switched to a two-stage voting system—more like a traditional two-round genre award—and we intend to use the same model again this year. Phase 1: Nominations (mid-January) Later this month, we’ll open for a forty-eight hour […]

Editor's Desk: A Note to End On

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 147 – December 2018

You might be wondering why there’s only one reprint this month. Earlier this year, I mentioned that I wanted to phase out the reprints and replace them with more original content. We’re still a good way from reaching the subscription milestone that will allow us to make that change, but we’re slowly moving in the […]

Editor's Desk: Wouldn't it be Nice?

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 146 – November 2018

I’ve already forgotten where and why, but I was recently reading an article that included a interesting passing comment—one or two wealthy Silicon Valley tech-types could completely change the literary landscape by annually donating a few million to one or two dozen organizations. It’s essentially a return to the old-school patronage model, but with publishers […]

Editor's Desk: After the Dirty Dozen

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 145 – October 2018

It looks like October has swung back around already. That means Clarkesworld has turned twelve and is now in its thirteenth year. Good thing we’re not superstitious! However, it occurs to me that I’m a bit overdue on another, “where we’re going” editorials, so this seems like a good time to jump in and do […]

Editor's Desk: Another Post-Con Crash

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 144 – September 2018

It’s been over a week, but I’m still a bit worn out from the San Jose Worldcon. Part of that is my usual post-con introvert crash and the rest is from the breakneck schedule I kept while there. I only had a couple of panels, but my calendar was filled with meetings, meals, and other […]

Editor's Desk: Oh, the Horror of it All!

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 143 – August 2018

Points from last month’s editorial and a couple of conversations at Readercon inspired me to go on another data mining expedition. I started digging into the genre data—which the authors provide on submissions—to take a look at possible trends. The data isn’t specific to themes within a genre, but that wasn’t what I was after […]

Editor's Desk: A Threat, Followed Through

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 142 – July 2018

When I was at the Nebula Awards a couple of months ago, Andrea Pawley and I started talking about these editorials—actually, it was more like the continuation of a discussion I started in a previous editorial. As you may know, I sometimes struggle with something to say in this column and have extended an open […]

Editor's Desk: A Death in the Clarkesworld Family

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 141 – June 2018

It is with a heavy heart that I must report the passing of Gardner Dozois, our reprints editor. His work at Clarkesworld is a mere footnote in a long list of impressive accomplishments during his career in science fiction and fantasy as an editor and writer. To this day, I’m still surprised and flattered that […]

Editor's Desk: Come One, Come All

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 140 – May 2018

I once again took to Twitter to find a source of inspiration for this month’s editorial and received several interesting suggestions. I could think of quick responses to several of them, but when I came across this one, it spoke to me. For as long as I can remember, I’ve been a science fiction fan: […]

Editor's Desk: Nine, Three, Six

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 139 – April 2018

When I left my job last year, one of the things I had hoped to do with my new-found time was get caught up on the production of the Clarkesworld anthologies. (If these are news to you, part of our business model includes annual anthologies that collect all of the original fiction published in a […]

Editor's Desk: And the Winners are . . .

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 138 – March 2018

As February came to an end, so did the second round of our annual reader’s poll. In the first round, our readers chose five finalists from our 2017 issues in two categories: best cover art and best short story. To recap, these were the finalists: Best Story “A Series of Steaks” by Vina Jie-Min Prasad […]

Editor's Desk: The Return of the Reader's Poll

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 137 – February 2018

It’s time to pick your favorite Clarkesworld story and cover art from 2017 in our reader’s poll. This year, we’re doing it a bit differently and running it more like a traditional two-round genre award. Phase 1 - Nominations (completed) At the end of January, we opened and held the twenty-four hour flash nomination period […]

Editor's Desk: Stepping into a New Year

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 136 – January 2018

December is, as always, a mad dash of a month for me and it almost seems as though I can never get organized enough to avoid the post-holiday crunch. Issues of Clarkesworld and Forever need to be put to bed, my Best Science Fiction of the Year anthology needs to be turned into the publisher, […]

Editor's Desk: The Things I've Seen

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 135 – December 2017

Next month will mark the third anniversary of our Chinese translation project with Storycom. I hadn’t had many opportunities to meet with them or the authors we’ve worked with outside of the occasional Worldcon. Last month, I had the opportunity to visit China for the first time as a guest of Science Fiction World, the […]

Editor's Desk: The Voice in the Shadows

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 134 – November 2017

Most months, I struggle to find what I want to write about in these editorials. It doesn’t seem to matter whether or not I’ve had time to think or if I feel rushed by a hectic schedule. The anxiety when writing these or an introduction brings everything to a crashing halt. I’ve been trying to […]

Editor's Desk: Things are Always Worse in the Dark

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 133 – October 2017

Sometimes life gets complicated. For the last five years, I’ve been dealing with the fallout from my heart attack. In the end, it caused me to change my life for the better, but it does come with some baggage. It shouldn’t surprise anyone that fear drove a lot of those changes. Fear that I might […]

Editor's Desk: Home for the Month

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 132 – September 2017

August was an unusual month in that I didn’t have any conventions, workshops, or meetings to attend. It was somewhat bittersweet in that I had very much wanted to attend the Worldcon in Finland, but couldn’t afford the trip. Everything I’ve heard from friends that did go made it sound like an amazing experience and […]

Editor's Desk: Ask and You Shall Receive

EDITORIAL by Neil Clarke in Issue 131 – August 2017

As the month came to a close, I found myself without a viable editorial for this issue. I had one I thought would work, but it fizzled and went in the wrong direction. In a moment of desperation, I turned to Twitter: Over the course of the next few hours, responses—serious and not—rolled in. So […]