In this week's Sofanauts podcast, Tony C. Smith interviewed the two editors of a new online SF magazine to be published soon, Lightspeed. John Joseph Adams is the fiction editor, and Andrea Kail is the non-fiction editor.
Lightspeed will start publication in June 2010. It will publish exclusively SF stories, unlike most magazines (both online and printed) that also feature fantasy and sometimes also horror. New material will be available free on the website each week, but a monthly e-book will be available for purchase at the beginning of the month, for those who don't want to wait or prefer to get it all in one issue. At the end of each year there will be a printed fiction anthology collecting the short stories. There will also be a podcast, but the editors were unsure about the details of this.
One interesting feature is that the non-fiction articles are supposed to be related to the stories. This will provide some factual discussion of the science ideas mentioned in the stories. This combination seems to hark back to the times when science fiction was perceived as a way of providing the public with some science education.
Readers of this blog will know that I read a lot of SF novels. I also read and listen to short stories, both in Interzone magazine and in various online magazines and podcasts. I usually prefer novels, with their wider scope and greater depth, but short stories can also be thought provoking and inspiring, and I wouldn't like to see the short form disappear (as some people sometimes predict).
I find the announcing of a new short fiction magazine at this time encouraging, and hope their business model works out so they can live long and prosper! I look forward to reading Lightspeed when it arrives.