Category: NEWS

Codex Q&A: What is the process of selling an anthology to a publisher?

In July 2013, I served as the “editor-in-residence” for the Codex Writing Group, which meant basically I was asking a month-long AMA (“Ask Me Anything”) interview. With Codex’s permission, I’m re-posting the Q&As here on my blog. The questions were all provided by members of Codex.

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What is the process of selling an anthology to a publisher? I understand how it works with novels, but how does the pitch process work? Do you have some of the authors on board already? Your agent takes your idea and approaches multiple publishers at once?

You’ve basically got it. You put together a proposal, then you recruit authors. Once you have a good number of established authors on board, your agent will shop the anthology to multiple publishers at once.

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HELP FUND MY ROBOT ARMY!!!

From October 1 – October 31, I’ll be running a Kickstarter campaign for a new project called HELP FUND MY ROBOT ARMY!!!, an anthology of improbable, futuristic, magical, & alternate-world crowdfunding projects. Please check it out, consider backing it, and, if you’re so inclined, spread the word!

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Codex Q&A: What are some of the biggest challenges running your magazines?

In July 2013, I served as the “editor-in-residence” for the Codex Writing Group, which meant basically I was asking a month-long AMA (“Ask Me Anything”) interview. With Codex’s permission, I’m re-posting the Q&As here on my blog. The questions were all provided by members of Codex.

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You’re known for keeping your magazines running like clockwork. What are some of the biggest challenges in doing that?

I guess the biggest challenge is the fact that I have to rely on so many other people. To keep things on track, I have to do a lot of wrangling. There’s a lot of moving pieces putting together something like Lightspeed every month, and it takes a big team to manage it all. I guess, ultimately, the biggest challenge is finding the right people to rely on to do what they say they will do. I’ve had very good luck in recruiting devoted people who excel at what they do.

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HELP FUND MY ROBOT ARMY!!!

From October 1 – October 31, I’ll be running a Kickstarter campaign for a new project called HELP FUND MY ROBOT ARMY!!!, an anthology of improbable, futuristic, magical, & alternate-world crowdfunding projects. Please check it out, consider backing it, and, if you’re so inclined, spread the word!

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Codex Q&A: Why did you decide to start your own SF/F/H magazine?

In July 2013, I served as the “editor-in-residence” for the Codex Writing Group, which meant basically I was asking a month-long AMA (“Ask Me Anything”) interview. With Codex’s permission, I’m re-posting the Q&As here on my blog. The questions were all provided by members of Codex.

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Why did you decide to start your own SF/F/H magazine?

I was approached about the possibility by Sean Wallace of Prime Books. He was already publishing Fantasy Magazine, but he was interested in launching a science fiction magazine as well, and asked if I might be interested in editing it. Sean had published a couple of my anthologies at that point, so he was familiar with my taste. Once I agreed, Sean and I worked together to develop and shape what Lightspeed would be.

But more to the point: The reason I left F&SF to edit my own magazine is because once I started working in editorial, I almost immediately knew that I wanted to do it as a career and that one day I’d want to sit in the big chair (i.e., be the one making the final editorial decisions). I was able to do that with the anthologies I was editing, but it’s not quite the same has the pure editorial experience of editing a magazine–something that’s ongoing, with no theme (other than genre). I couldn’t just stay at F&SF and hope that the editor would get fired or retire. He couldn’t be fired because the editor and publisher was the same person (Gordon Van Gelder), and I couldn’t wait around for him to retire since he was only 10 years older than me. So editing my own magazine was pretty much my only option if I wanted to be the one calling the shots at a magazine.

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HELP FUND MY ROBOT ARMY!!!

From October 1 – October 31, I’ll be running a Kickstarter campaign for a new project called HELP FUND MY ROBOT ARMY!!!, an anthology of improbable, futuristic, magical, & alternate-world crowdfunding projects. Please check it out, consider backing it, and, if you’re so inclined, spread the word!

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Editor & Anthologist…and Now Publisher

Today, it was announced that a took a big step forward (and sideways) in my career: Now I am not only an editor and anthologist, but a publisher as well. I just acquired the two magazines I edit–Lightspeed and Fantasy–from their current publisher, Prime Books. I’ll officially take over as publisher as of the January 2012 issue. Here’s the press release:

 

 

Prime Books Sells Magazines Lightspeed and Fantasy to Editor John Joseph Adams

ROCKVILLE, MD, NOV. 7—Prime Books is pleased to announce the sale and transfer of ownership of their acclaimed online magazines Lightspeed (www.lightspeedmagazine.com) and Fantasy (www.fantasy-magazine.com) to John Joseph Adams. Adams, the current editor of both magazines, will officially assume the role of publisher starting with the January 2012 issues.

“With the continuing expansion and success of Prime Books, my attention and time is increasingly consumed by book publishing,” publisher Sean Wallace said. “With John already doing a terrific job as editor, it simply made sense for him to take over as publisher as well.  We’re really thrilled that this has worked out for both John and Prime.”

New publisher John Joseph Adams says he is delighted at the prospect of taking over the magazines and looks forward to the challenges ahead. “It’s an exciting time to be involved in publishing,” he said. “Models are changing and so is the readership, and online magazines have a better shot at sustainability than ever have before. I believe the possibilities for growth are tremendous, and I look forward to staying in the vanguard of this new frontier.”

Fantasy Magazine was established in 2005, and has been edited by Sean Wallace, Paul Tremblay, and Cat Rambo, with Adams taking over as sole editor earlier this year. Lightspeed—published by Wallace and edited by Adams—debuted in June 2010 and was a 2011 Hugo Award nominee. Numerous stories originally published in Lightspeed and Fantasy have been reprinted in best-of-the-year anthologies, and Lightspeed and Fantasy stories have been nominated for the Hugo Award, the Nebula Award, the World Fantasy Award, the Theodore Sturgeon Award, and others. Lightspeed’s first year of fiction has just been published by Prime Books in the print anthology Lightspeed: Year One (ISBN: 978-1-60701-304-4).

About John Joseph Adams

In addition to his duties with Lightspeed and Fantasy, John Joseph Adams (www.johnjosephadams.com) is the bestselling editor of many anthologies including Wastelands, The Living Dead, Brave New Worlds, and The Way of the Wizard. In 2011, he was nominated for two Hugo Awards and two World Fantasy Awards.

About Prime Books

Established in 2001 and published by Hugo Award and World Fantasy Award-winner Sean Wallace, Prime Books (www.prime-books.com), is an independent publishing house specializing in science fiction, fantasy, and horror, with national distribution by Diamond Book Distributors.

Contacts

John Joseph Adams, john@lightspeedmagazine.com
Sean Wallace, prime@prime-books.com

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Hugo! Award! Nominations!

So this year’s Hugo finalists have been announced…and I’m up for the Best Editor, Short Form award! Additionally, Lightspeed is up for Best Semiprozine, and a story we published in Lightspeed, “Amaryllis” by Carrie Vaughn, is a finalist for Best Short Story!

To say I’m thrilled would be a huge understatement. It’s been so hard to keep this quiet until the results were announced, so it’s great to finally be able to share the news with you all. It is a huge, huge honor to be nominated, and one I will always cherish.

A big congrats to Carrie Vaughn–it’s her first sf award nomination!–and to all of the other authors who have appeared in Lightspeed. And also a sincere congratulations (and HUGE THANKS) to everyone who works with me on the Lightspeed team. I’d like to especially single out my assistant editors Christie Yant and Erin Stocks, my former assistant Jordan Hamessley, my editorial assistant Stacey Friedberg, our podcast/audio editor Stefan Rudnicki, our former nonfiction editor Andrea Kail, and our amazing webmaster Jeremiah Tolbert–you guys helped shape Lightspeed pretty much from the very beginning, and we couldn’t have done it without you. Thanks too to all of the current team members who have helped keep the ship afloat–managing editor Molly Tanzer, current nonfiction editor Esther Inglis-Arkell, editorial assistant Robyn Lupo, and everyone who works on the slush team. And, last but not least, we all owe a huge debt to Lightspeed‘s publisher, Sean Wallace, for taking the bold step to launch the magazine and for giving us all the tools to put out a great product that we’re all really proud of.

And more generally, I owe a huge debt of gratitude to Gordon Van Gelder for being such a fantastic editorial mentor; I wouldn’t have the career I have today if not for his tutelage. And thanks too to Ellen Datlow and all of my other editorial colleagues who have helped me along the way (both directly–and indirectly, by showing me the way with their great anthologies).

For a full list of the finalists, check out Locus Online’s reportage of the nominees.

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Brave New Worlds Table of Contents

Brave New Worlds

Here’s the table of contents for my forthcoming dystopian anthology, Brave New Worlds, which comes out in January.

  • Introduction — John Joseph Adams
  • The Lottery — Shirley Jackson
  • Red Card — S. L. Gilbow
  • Ten With a Flag — Joseph Paul Haines
  • The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas — Ursula K. Le Guin
  • Evidence of Love in a Case of Abandonment — M. Rickert
  • The Funeral — Kate Wilhelm
  • O Happy Day! — Geoff Ryman
  • Pervert — Charles Coleman Finlay
  • From Homogenous to Honey — Neil Gaiman & Bryan Talbot
  • Billennium — J. G. Ballard
  • Amaryllis — Carrie Vaughn
  • Pop Squad — Paolo Bacigalupi
  • Auspicious Eggs — James Morrow
  • Peter Skilling — Alex Irvine
  • The Pedestrian — Ray Bradbury
  • The Things that Make Me Weak and Strange Get Engineered Away — Cory Doctorow
  • The Pearl Diver — Caitlín R. Kiernan
  • Dead Space for the Unexpected — Geoff Ryman
  • “Repent, Harlequin!” Said the Ticktockman — Harlan Ellison®
  • Is This Your Day to Join the Revolution? — Genevieve Valentine
  • Independence Day — Sarah Langan
  • The Lunatics — Kim Stanley Robinson
  • Sacrament — Matt Williamson
  • The Minority Report — Philip K. Dick
  • Just Do It — Heather Lindsley
  • Harrison Bergeron — Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
  • Caught in the Organ Draft — Robert Silverberg
  • Geriatric Ward — Orson Scott Card
  • Arties Aren’t Stupid — Jeremiah Tolbert
  • Jordan’s Waterhammer — Joe Mastroianni
  • Of a Sweet Slow Dance in the Wake of Temporary Dogs — Adam-Troy Castro
  • Resistance — Tobias S. Buckell
  • Civilization — Vylar Kaftan
  • For Further Reading — Ross E. Lockhart

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BRAVE NEW WORLDS cover!

Here’s the cover of my next anthology from Night Shade Books, Brave New Worlds, an anthology of dystopian fiction, which is due out in January 2011. The art and cover design is by Cody Tilson.

Brave New Worlds
BRAVE NEW WORLDS cover. Click to see the full cover spread.

Here’s the cover copy:

YOU ARE BEING WATCHED.

In his smash-hit anthologies Wastelands and The Living Dead, acclaimed editor John Joseph Adams showed you what happens when society is utterly wiped away. Now he brings you a glimpse into an equally terrifying future — what happens when civilization invades and dictates every aspect of your life? From 1984 to The Handmaid’s Tale, from Children of Men to Bioshock, the dystopian imagination has been a vital and gripping cautionary force. Brave New Worlds collects the best tales of totalitarian menace by some of today’s most visionary writers, including Neil Gaiman, Orson Scott Card, Kim Stanley Robinson, and Ursula K. Le Guin.

When the government wields its power against its own people, every citizen becomes an enemy of the state. Will you fight the system, or be ground to dust beneath the boot of tyranny?

The contents are not final on the book yet, so I can’t post them yet, but all of the authors on the cover are finalized, so they’re definitely in the book. Like my other recent Night Shade anthologies, the book will run around 230,000 words all together.

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THE LIVING DEAD 2 Website Now Live!

The website for my new zombie anthology, The Living Dead 2, is now live. The url is http://www.johnjosephadams.com/the-living-dead-2.

On the site, you will find 8 stories in their entirety, available both as regular web pages and in a downloadable ebook sampler (currently available in epub and pdf format, with additional formats forthcoming from the Baen Webscriptions store). There will also be 36 different author interviews with the contributors. They’re scheduled to appear daily, starting today, with the final one scheduled to run on Oct. 4. And last, but not least, you can also read the introduction and the header notes to each story in the anthology. (Okay, maybe that IS least!)

The anthology features all-new, original stories by zombie masters Robert Kirkman, Max Brooks, David Wellington, Brian Keene, Jonathan Maberry, Carrie Ryan, John Skipp, and Mira Grant, for a grand total of FORTY-FOUR STORIES. This includes a mix of originals (27) and reprints (17) (none of which have ever appeared in a zombie anthology before).

The free stories, which you can find here, are:

  • The Skull-Faced City — David Barr Kirtley
  • And the Next, and the Next — Genevieve Valentine
  • Flotsam & Jetsam — Carrie Ryan
  • Mouja — Matt London
  • Who We Used to Be — David Moody
  • The Days of Flaming Motorcycles — Catherynne M. Valente
  • Obedience — Brenna Yovanoff
  • Rural Dead — Bret Hammond

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Announcing LIGHTSPEED, a New Science Fiction Magazine

Lightspeed

I’m pleased to announce that I’ll be the fiction editor of a new science fiction online magazine called LIGHTSPEED, which will be published by Prime Books. I’ll be leaving F&SF at the end of the year to take on this new role. The press release below has all the pertinent details.

Prime Books Announces LIGHTSPEED, a New Science Fiction Magazine

ROCKVILLE, MD, OCT. 16 — Prime Books, the award-winning independent press and publisher of Fantasy Magazine, announced today that in June 2010 it will launch a new online magazine called LIGHTSPEED (www.lightspeedmagazine.com), which will publish four science fiction short stories every month, along with an assortment of non-fiction features. LIGHTSPEED will be edited by John Joseph Adams, the bestselling editor of anthologies such as Wastelands and The Living Dead, and Andrea Kail, a writer, critic, and television producer who worked for thirteen years on Late Night with Conan O’Brien. Adams will select and edit the fiction, while Kail will handle the non-fiction.

LIGHTSPEED will focus exclusively on science fiction. It will feature all types of sf, from near-future, sociological soft sf, to far-future, star-spanning hard sf, and anything and everything in between. No subject will be considered off-limits, and writers will be encouraged to take chances with their fiction and push the envelope. New content will be posted twice a week, including one piece of fiction, and one piece of non-fiction. The fiction selections each month will consist of two original stories and two reprints, except for the debut issue, which will feature four original pieces of fiction. All of the non-fiction will be original.

LIGHTSPEED will open to fiction submissions and non-fiction queries on January 1, 2010. Guidelines for fiction and non-fiction will be available on LIGHTSPEED‘s website, www.lightspeedmagazine.com, by December 1, 2009.

About John Joseph Adams

John Joseph Adams (www.johnjosephadams.com) is the bestselling editor of many anthologies, such as By Blood We Live, Federations, The Living Dead (a World Fantasy Award finalist), and Wastelands: Stories of the Apocalypse. He has been called “the reigning king of the anthology world” by Barnes & Noble’s Unabashedly Bookish blog and his anthology The Living Dead was named one of the best books of the year by Publishers Weekly. In addition to his editorial work, he is also currently a reviewer for Audible.com and a blogger for Tor.com.

About Andrea Kail

Andrea Kail (www.andreakail.com) is a graduate of the Dramatic Writing Program at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts and has spent the last two decades working from one end of New York’s television spectrum to the other: HBO, MTV, A&E, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, as well as thirteen years at NBC’s Emmy Award-winning Late Night with Conan O’Brien. Her fiction has appeared in Fantasy Magazine, and her novella, “The Sun God at Dawn, Rising from a Lotus Blossom,” was a first-place winner in the Writers of the Future contest and appeared in Writers of the Future Vol. XXIII. Since 2005, Andrea has also been writing lively film criticism for such venues as Paradox Magazine and CinemaSpy.

About Prime Books

Prime Books (www.prime-books.com), edited and published by Hugo Award-nominee and World Fantasy Award-winner Sean Wallace, is an award-winning independent publishing house specializing in a mix of anthologies, collections, novels, and magazines. Some of its established and new authors/editors include John Joseph Adams, KJ Bishop, Philip K. Dick, Theodora Goss, Rich Horton, Nick Mamatas, Sarah Monette, Holly Phillips, Tim Pratt, Ekaterina Sedia, Catherynne M. Valente, and Jeff VanderMeer.

Contacts

Sean Wallace, publisher, sean@lightspeedmagazine.com

John Joseph Adams, fiction editor, john@lightspeedmagazine.com

Andrea Kail, non-fiction editor, andrea@lightspeedmagazine.com

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