Editor’s Note – January 2012
We started Redstone Science Fiction two years ago because we saw that there were a limited number of professionally paying markets. A lot of good stories were going unpublished, or were being published in markets that did not pay at all. If you’re not being paid, then one might as well publish it on your own website. So we created a professional market. (There certainly has been an explosion of excellent markets since then!)
We started Redstone SF to publish science fiction. Most of the professional markets were publishing a mix of urban fantasy and ‘soft’ science fiction. We enjoy these type of stories and many others. In fact, we are huge fans of epic fantasy. But, there were very few slots where one could be certain that specifically SF stories would be published. So we created a strictly SF market.
We created an online magazine because it was a financially reasonable proposition. We did not expect to make money, but the technology exists to create a quality market with a minimal investment. We found a way to underwrite the magazine that allows us a break-even operating budget as an online magazine. So we created a clean, professional website for RSF.
We focused on following SFWA guidelines so that all our authors would not only be paid professionally, but recognized by the ‘guild’ of our genre. We stuck to it and worked hard to treat everyone professionally. So in July 2011, after a year of publishing, we were recognized as a SFWA qualifying market.
We’ve had a great deal of help within the field and from friends. David Chunn’s interview with Lou Anders gained us immediate attention in the SF world. Sarah Einstein’s Accessible Future Contest in 2010 and Identity Crisis Contest in 2011 gave us exposure in the wider literary world and generated tremendous interest within the genre. Essays of SF literary criticism by Henry Cribbs helped establish our point of view that SF is serious writing and something to be examined and discussed from an academic mindset. Interviews with outstanding editors John Joseph Adams and Cat Rambo also gained us tremendous attention in our early months of trying to establish ourselves. Quality submissions from well-known writers like Cat, and Mary Robinette Kowal to a fledging market like us were greatly appreciated. Reprints of my favorite stories from recent years by Hannu Rajaniemi, Ken MacLeod, and the ubiquitous Cory Doctorow were also important factors in establishing our name and ‘brand’. The support of SF social media mavens like Christy Yant, Samuel Montgomery Blinn, and Charles A. Tan, who have helped promote us to the online world, have been of substantial importance. We’ve even started creating story podcasts with Amanda Fitzwater, and are excited at the prospect of bringing the rest of our stories online. So we have become integrated into the SF world at large.
But where does that leave us now, in 2012? We’ve reached our central goals and have maintained our professional standards. What now must we do? We have decided to focus our efforts on the stories and the authors. We are very pleased to be the first professional publication of many authors and to have provided a forum for outstanding work that might not otherwise be published and recognized. That is our reason for moving forward, to publish top-notch science fiction.
Two authors we are proud to have published in Redstone SF are Rhiannon Held and Christopher Miller. Rhiannon’s first story in RSF, Bloodtech, struck us with its quality, and it came as no surprise that she was soon signed by Tor to write a trilogy. We accepted two of Chris Miller’s stories, very early in the development of RSF because they overwhelmed us with their hallucinogenic quality that seemed like Philip K. Dick was haunting our inbox. This month we have new stories from each of them that are simply outstanding. We are confident you will enjoy their work as much as we do.
Thank you for supporting Redstone Science Fiction. As we move into our third year of working on the magazine and publish our 20th online edition, we are as excited as ever to add something to the field we all love so much.