Friday, December 7, 2007

Saving the Magazines, the Mob Way

A couple of weeks ago, people like Warren Ellis, Cory Doctorow, Paolo Bacigalupi (good name, wrong advice, see below), Lou Anders, Jason Stoddard, Adam Rakunas, and more were discussing how to save the SF (short story) magazines (or not).

Problem is, their ideas are not quite radical enough.

At WFC in Saratoga Springs I had a very enlightening conversation with an estimable man -- let's call him 'Al Golden' -- about this very subject. We worked out the solution:

  1. An SF magazine should be run by the mafia: this not only provides excellent coverage in North America, South Italy, Japan, Russia, and China; it also means a backer with deep pockets;
  2. Subscription policy: "Subscribe, or your spouse (or kids) get it";
  3. Subscription policy, continued: "and be happy that we've only raised our rates by 10% this year."
  4. Submission policy: not all those whimpy cents rates: $100 dollar per word on pre-acceptance;
  5. Submission policy, continued: we don't reject stories, but shoot unsuccessful authors(*)
More as the capo de capi thinks of it.

(*) = while 4 might lead to a slushpile the size of Mount Vesuvius, 5 should ascertain that this is only a one-time occurrance. Although an informant who prefers to remain incognito remarked that 'there are not enough bullets'.

Mafioso SF: an offer you can't refuse!

More IZ November email stuff

Sorry about the extended silence on this blog (to the ones still checking it): it basically means I've been extremely busy and just couldn't wrangle the time off for some posts. Maybe I'll do a few quickies (which are not really my style).

Anyway: Interzone November email stats: 404 stories adding up to some 1931100 words.

I'm reading through some 150 of them, while having been under the weather this week, and hope to send out responses over the weekend. The plan until Christmas: work, read slush, send out responses, and build up lack of sleep.

Oh well.

But I've already read one story that (almost literally) twisted my guts -- in a good way -- and one that made me laugh out loud. Good signs!