Folks who are doing it right
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Since many of my readers are interested in science fiction and fantasy, and since we often talk about flaws in the genre and fandom, I thought it would be a good idea to highlight a corner of the field that’s doing an awesome job. If you haven’t heard of the online magazine Strange Horizons, you should click over there right now. They publish science fiction, fantasy, and horror short stories as well as reviews, columns, poetry, and artist spotlights. Remember my post about how magazines can promote greater diversity in their slush piles? Well, Strange Horizons has always done many of the things I suggested, particularly when it comes to attracting fiction by female authors. Their editorial staff, once headed by the awesome Mary Anne Mohanraj and now by the equally awesome Susan Marie Groppi, is committed to not just going with the easy “we pick the best stories” line and puts a lot of work into attracting submissions from authors of all kinds. And they’ve succeeded.
I don’t always like the stories in SH, but some of the most amazing SF stories I’ve ever read have been published there. We know they have good taste, because they’ve published a story by guest blogger NKJ (plus many other luminaries and pre-luminaries).
At the moment, Strange Horizons is having a fund drive. All of the money they raise goes toward paying writers and maintaining the website. In the case of fiction, they pay pro rates and always have. If you like reading short fiction and want to support a magazine that is committed to publishing great stuff by all kinds of writers, I encourage you to donate a little as well. Even if you’re not able to donate, read. It’s worth it.