All posts by Jonathan Strahan

Successful, but challenging…

There are times when it’s difficult to reconcile the differences between various aspects of your life.  So far this year has been successful, but challenging. Since returning from World Fantasy in Toronto I have sold four new anthologies, including finding a wonderful new home for my ‘best of the year’s series, been commissioned to edit a special issue of a magazine I love and respect, worked with my colleagues and dear friends at Locus on eight issues of the magazine, recorded 26 episodes of the Coode St Podcast with my partner-in-crime Gary K. Wolfe and several episodes of the Last Short Story podcast, had Gardner Dozois call two of my books the best science fiction and the best fantasy anthologies of the year, attended a terrific convention in Canberra, been incredibly fortunate to have two of my books win the Locus and Aurealis Awards, and been nominated for the Hugo and World Fantasy Awards. I also saw Bruce Springsteen live in Sydney, a fine Elvis Costello show, a good Rickie Lee Jones show, and half of a You Am I gig that I was happy to see. With a little luck I’ll see more. And, of course, Miss 11 got into the Gifted and Talented Program, which made me almost insanely proud.

But, at the same time things have been difficult and challenging for me at my day job. Nothing seriously wrong, and I am very fortunate to work with a great group (from my director to my manager to my immediate colleagues), but it’s not been much fun. I’ve also had a string of minor health problems, starting with what looks to have been a nasty ear infection that has left me with slightly damaged hearing and permanent tinnitus (and caused me to miss a best friend’s wedding), a blurry right eye caused by the collapse of the collagen layer at the back of my eye (something that can happen when you get older and are very short-sighted apparently), and a sore neck. They’ve all slowed me down, and worn away at me. As have some unnecessary and unfortunate complications to do with my editing.

Some or all of this will come right, and there are good things ahead. Today Springsteen tickets go on sale.  Seeing him next February will be huge. I am going to London and Brighton in October, which I think will be fantastic (even though getting ready for it feels like a slog), and there are family birthdays and celebrations.  The family is going away for Christmas, which should be terrific. And in January I’ll be turning fifty, which I’m definitely not looking forward to: lots of talk of parties and celebrations, but I feel mixed and unsure about it and may prefer just to let the day go past unnoticed. Who knows?

Either way, it’s been a time of feeling tired, stressed and worn out. That said, while I’m perfectly willing to whinge a bit on my blog, I look at the challenges facing others and know how comparatively lucky I am.

Episode 155: Live with Andy Duncan and Ellen Klages

A little late due to technical issues, but here is Episode 155 of The Coode Street Podcast. This week we asked master storytellers Andy Duncan and Ellen Klages to join us in the Gershwin Room to discuss the writing life, short fiction, collaboration and their forthcoming Tor.com novella “Wakulla Springs”.

As always, our sincere thanks to Andy and Ellen for taking the time to talk to us. We hope you enjoy the episode!

August

it’s the middle of August. This is a bit shocking, really.  It was only April ten minutes ago. I am in no sense prepared for the year to start its endgame, but it seems I have no choice. Taxes, birthdays, a One Direction concert, a trip to the UK, and lots and lots of other things stand between here and the Christmas break. I feel weary just thinking about it. Along the way, projects to deliver.

The main thing on my plate is finalising details for the UK. I’m flying Singapore Airlines, which should be fine, and am all settled for the Brighton part of the trip. Not set for London, though. I think I’ve allowed too much time for holiday, and am trying to reconcile the details. I’m sure it’ll all be set soon, but it’s another thing.

Along the way, I’m listening to the Eels, still reading Sofia Samatar, podcasting like a bandit and not thinking about San Antonio or many, many other things. Busy times. How are things with you?

Call for Stories: The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year: Vol. 8

I edit THE BEST SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY OF THE YEAR anthology series for Solaris Books. The seventh volume in the series was published in March 2013, and the eight will appear in April 2014.

I am currently reading for the 2013 volume, which will cover stories first published between 1 January and 31 December 2013. I am looking for stories from all branches of science fiction and fantasy: space opera to cyberpunk, fairy tales to the slipstream, or anything else that might qualify. If in doubt, PLEASE send it. Please note: This is a reprint anthology.

I work on a tight deadline, and need to see work as early as possible.  With that in mind, the submission deadline for this year’s book is 15 October 2013. Anything sent after this deadline will reach me too late. If a magazine, anthology, or collection you are in or you edit is coming out before 31 December 2013 please send galleys or manuscripts so that I can consider the stories in time.

Where possible, I prefer to receive book-length submissions in print. Anything else can be sent to me via email. I prefer ePub, .mobi, .rtf or .doc files. PDFs are acceptable, but are inconvenient. I strongly suggest that authors check with their publishers that they are sending review copies out to me, as I don’t have the resources to follow-up every publisher to get material.

When sending material please put “BEST SF/F of the Year” on the envelope.

Jonathan Strahan
PO Box 544
Mt Lawley WA 6929
Australia

Email submissions, recommendations, or information on publications can be sent to me via email at: jonathan.strahan (at) gmail (dot) com.

NOTE TO PUBLISHERS

I am eager to see and be able to consider the work you are publishing. If you are producing a magazine, a chapbook, a collection or anthology with any original stories in it please let me know. While I prefer not to accept email submissions for book length works as a rule, I am happy to talk to publishers about making exceptions where necessary. The important thing, for me, is to make sure that I get to consider the best science fiction and fantasy published during 2013.

  • I do not need to receive manuscripts from authors of stories from venues that it’s likely I already receive regularly (I get Asimov’s, Analog, F&SF, Interzone, Postscripts etc, but not many of the smaller ‘zines and publications).
  • If you are publishing online, please email me copies of your stories at (jonathan.strahan (at) gmail (dot) com). This is particularly important for stories published between October and December, which may otherwise be overlooked. I do not require print-outs of online publications (I regularly read Tor.com, IGMS, Strange Horizons, Clarkesworld, Fantasy, Apex etc online).
  • Please do not send an SASE. This is not a submission, and I’m unable to return manuscripts or respond directly to stories sent to me.

NOTE TO WRITERS

If I am considering your story for inclusion in THE BEST SCIENCE FICTION AND AND FANTASY OF THE YEAR, I will be acquiring non-exclusive World anthology rights in English and foreign languages.

Solaris Books to publish The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year

I am delighted to announce that, starting from March 2014, Solaris Books will be publishing The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year series throughout the world in the English language.

As announced this week, my agent Howard Morhaim and I have recently sold The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year: Volume 8 and The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year: Volume 9 to Jonathan Oliver at Solaris. Jon has been my editor on the award-winning “Infinity” series of anthologies, and on the recent Fearsome Journeys. Working with Jon and the Solaris team is a pleasure, and I know they’ll help me take the Best of the Year to the international audience it needs and deserves. I cannot imagine a better team to partner with on this series of books.

I am, of course, sad the series is leaving Night Shade Books after seven years. I have been incredibly fortunate to work with Jason Williams, Jeremy Lassen, Ross Lockhart, and the Night Shade Books team on these books and an online magazine over an eight year period. I have very fond memories of those times, and am incredibly proud of those books. When Night Shade changed hands I knew it was time for a fresh start with the Best of the Year, but I hope a chance will arise to work together again in the future. Until then, though, I have a lot of reading to do!