CY: It’s that time of year again, when we all realize how far behind we are in our reading! (Just kidding . . . kind of.) People are eager to catch up on what they missed last year as we head into awards season, but it’s not always easy to know where to start.
AS: There are a number of Recommended Reading Lists coming out. The Locus list just came out, and we have THREE stories on the list! Our sibling mags, Nightmare and Lightspeed, have three and four stories respectively. Over at Nerds of a Feather we have THREE stories on their list! And they see us as good candidates for a Hugo in the Best Editor category, which is . . . well. It’s awesome! These lists can be great ways to find new reads. Christie, how do you find reads?
CY: I pointed those lists out to my book club and got a lot of “That’s too much to sort through!” (Ha! And that’s already been curated for them . . . ) But I did get them to pick a book off of the Locus list anyway—I just had to do the sorting-through myself.
As far as short fiction goes, apart from reading lists like these, year’s best anthologies usually have a list of the stories the editor loved but didn’t quite make the cut. It’s always interesting to see how much the lists overlap, and how much they don’t!
AS: For short fic in magazines beyond our own submissions, I have a few reviewers whose taste often lines up with my own. I sometimes start with the Locus Rec List or another respected list, pick a story with an interesting title or author, then cross check to see if some of the reviewers I like have said anything about it. I read a lot of anthologies for reviews, and so much depends on just hearing about something in the first place. Occasionally I find out about a book that looks intriguing but it’s too late to review at that point. Locus magazine can be a great tool for finding books, and just browsing through Netgalley can sometimes turn up cool finds. Also, to a degree—and more randomly—Twitter.
AS: The great thing about finding a magazine you really like is that you know there will be some fantastic new reads for you on a fairly regular basis. I don’t think most readers will like every piece in every issue of any given magazine—there are bound to be occasional entries that don’t land for you – but I do think magazines can be where some of the most interesting and powerful writing happens. It’s really wonderful to see so many people love the work we’ve published, and I’m seriously glad for the authors. Keep reading! We’ve got more on the way!
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In this issue’s short fiction, P.H. Low takes craft to the extreme in “The Will of the God of Music,” and Effie Sieberg’s “There’s Magic in Bread” connects lessons of the past to the problems of the present; in flash fiction, Mari Ness takes a hard-hitting look at current magical trends in “Enchanted Mirrors Are Making a Comeback. That’s Not Necessarily a Good Thing,” and in Aimee Ogden’s “Moments of Doubt” an absence of evidence leaves us guessing about the fate of the evidently absent; in poetry, we have “The Distance Between Us” by Rati Mehrotra and “Possession” by Tonya Liburd. Plus an interview with the author of The Changeling, The Ballad of Black Tom, and Lone Women, Victor LaValle. Enjoy!
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