An Interview with Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas
Posted August 3, 2014on:
Ya’ll know Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas, right? Even if you’re not sure if you know who they are, I’ll bet you know their work. Editors of Apex Magazine, Chicks Dig Time Lords, Glitter and Mayhem, Queers Dig Time Lords, among others, it’s no surprise these two amazingly talented editors have a brand new project up their sleeve.
Lynne and Michael were kind enough to answer a few of my questions about their newest venture, Uncanny Magazine, which they are funding the first year of via a Kickstarter campaign.
LRR: Your newest venture is called Uncanny Magazine. Tell us all about it!
L & M: We’re a professional Science Fiction and Fantasy online magazine, dedicated to sharing the kinds of work that stays with you after you’ve read it. We think that the best Science Fiction and Fantasy literature combines strong characterization, elegant prose, and diverse voices from around the world. We love stories that make us feel.
LRR: How did you decide that now was the time to start a new speculative fiction magazine?
L & M: Well, we stepped down from Apex Magazine due to our daughter’s major surgery in January of this year. She’s completed her recovery, and we felt ready to get back into the industry that means so much to us.
LRR: You are currently doing a kickstarter to fund the first year of the magazine. When can readers expect the first issue, and will readers who missed out on the kickstarter still be able to subscribe or purchase single issues?
L & M: We plan for our first issue to go to backers and subscribers at the beginning of November. Readers who missed out on the Kickstarter after it closes August 28th will still be able to subscribe or purchase single issues, hopefully through all of the major online ebook retailers (we’re just beginning to work on that now, but we’ve already committed to working with Weightless Books (http://weightlessbooks.com/) for example.)
LRR: Why did you decide to take the Kickstarter route? Any tips for people who are planning their first Kickstarter?
L & M: We have seen several successful Kickstarters for SF/F magazines, and we ran a successful kickstarter last year for the Glitter & Mayhem anthology (http://www.apexbookcompany.com/products/glitter-mayhem) — now available through Apex Publications — with our co-editor John Klima.
When we were thinking about what kind of magazine we’d like to own, we had big ideas and hopes for the kind of work we’d like to publish. Kickstarter is one of the best ways to finance this kind of big dream these days, because it’s built on an ethos of a community of people being able to patronize things they think are cool and should exist
Tips? Be ready to lose a month of your life to managing a Kickstarter. It’s rather all-consuming, yet fun.
LRR: You’ve already solicited works from Charlie Jane Anders, Paul Cornell, Sofia Samatar, Scott Lynch, Catherynne M. Valente and Ken Liu, among many others. How did the authors respond to your announcement of a new magazine, and will Uncanny Magazine be open to unsolicited submissions as well?
L & M: Every author we’ve talked to was very excited. Many of them have worked with us before, and were happy to do so again. We will absolutely be open to unsolicited submissions as well, assuming that we fund. We’re committed to finding and showcasing new writers as well as established ones!
LRR: What are your long term goals for the magazine?
L & M: We want this to be a sustainable magazine that continues forward for many years to come, sharing awesome stories, poems, and nonfiction with as many people as possible. We will work to grow the magazine so that we can offer more and more excellent content each month to our subscribers and readers.
LRR: I keep hearing something about naming the Space Unicorn? Where did the Space Unicorn come from, and tell me more about how someone might get to name it!
L & M: The Space Unicorn came out of the discussion with the artist who designed our logo, Katy Shuttleworth. When she asked us what we wanted, we joked “space unicorn!” … and then we said… “Wait, no REALLY. LET’S DO THAT.” Because space unicorns are cool.
The honor of getting to name our Space Unicorn will go to one lucky backer at the $1000 reward level. Hopefully the buyer will be kind to us and give it an awesome name, and not something like Jar Jar or Gigli.
LRR: Thanks so much Lynne and Michael!
For more information, check out the Uncanny Magazine website, check out the Kickstarter page, or follow them on twitter or facebook. You can learn more about Lynne and Michael’s previous projects by visit their websites (Lynne, Michael) . In the meantime, I’ll leave you with this preview of some cover art for Uncanny Magazine. Surreal and magical, it makes you curious, doesn’t it?