Issue 77 – February 2013


Editor's Desk: Upgrades and Readers' Poll Winners

A few months ago, I found out that my heart attack had placed me on the path to becoming a cyborg. Last month, my wife and I drove to the hospital and within a few hours the transition was complete. It’s considered minor surgery when they implant a defibrillator, but anytime they snake a wire into your heart, there follows an over-abundance of caution. I am happy to say that the procedure went smoothly and I was back at home the next day. My recovery is moving along and I feel good.

The oddest thing so far? The defibrillator has a built-in speaker. Yes, music can play from my chest, though it isn’t a good sign when it does.

In the interim, I’ve had a lot more couch time. I took the opportunity to play catch up on a few projects:

  • The third annual volume of the Clarkesworld anthologies (titled Clarkesworld: Year Three) is now available in ebook, with a trade paperback coming by the end of the month.
  • The fourth and fifth volumes of the Clarkesworld anthologies are 95% complete.
  • Four more back issues are now available in print. (September 2011-December 2011)
  • Clarkesworld subscriptions are now available in Germany and France via Amazon. (in English)

During my couch time, I've also been enjoying people’s responses to our annual readers’ survey, for which I am happy to announce the results:

Clarkesworld Readers’ Survey – Best Story of 2012

  1. Immersion” by Aliette de Bodard
  2. Fade to White” by Catherynne M. Valente
  3. Mantis Wives” by Kij Johnson

The voting was close at the start, but in the end, “Immersion” by Aliette de Bodard won by a comfortable margin. Aliette also deserves congratulations on her BSFA Award nomination for this piece. Something tells me it won’t be the last time we’ll be mentioning “Immersion” and “award nomination” in the same sentence.

Clarkesworld Readers’ Survey – Best Cover Art of 2012

WINNER: “New World” by Ken Barthelmey

2nd Place: “Sci-Fi Farmer” by Jessada Sutthi

3rd Place: “Breaking Through” by Julie Dillon

As the voting in this category progressed, several artists traded out the top spot, but towards the end, “New World” by Ken Barthelmey ran away with the top honor and never looked back.

Congratulations to all of our winners!

One of the things that often came up in the survey comments was a desire to see us publish more fiction in each issue. As you know, I’ve expressed a strong desire to be able to make Clarkesworld my full-time job. I believe that in order to make that goal a reality, it requires that we continue to expand our offerings as opportunities arise. Previously, we’ve tied expansion to subscription levels and I think it is time to do that again.

To that end, I’d like to announce the first of our 2013 milestone goals:

Increase the number of stories per issue to four, when we pick up five hundred new subscriptions.

Our goals for the year don’t end there, but I still have minor details to work out. Hopefully, I can tie up all the loose ends at Boskone later this month. Maybe I'll see some of you there.

I’d like to close with a bit of a public service announcement: If you can nominate for the Hugo Awards this year, you should know that the requirements for the Hugo Award for Best Semiprozine have changed. While Clarkesworld is still eligible in this category (just as I’m still eligible in Best Editor Short Form), some familiar names seen on past ballots are not.

In an attempt to help with the transition from the old rules to the new ones, I’ve repurposed as a place you can find information about the category and a growing list of magazines with their eligibility status. This unofficial resource is a good place to learn about some the many worthy contenders for this award. Check it out sometime and don’t forget to nominate!

Author profile

Neil Clarke is the editor of Clarkesworld Magazine, Forever Magazine, and several anthologies, including the Best Science Fiction of the Year series. He is a ten-time finalist and current winner of the Hugo Award for Best Editor (Short Form), has won the Chesley Award for Best Art Director three times, and received the Kate Wilhelm Solstice Award from SFWA in 2019. His latest anthology, New Voices in Chinese Science Fiction (co-edited with Xia Jia and Regina Kanyu Wang), is now available from Clarkesworld Books. He currently lives in NJ with his wife and two sons.

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