Archive for 2018

Uncanny Magazine Issue 26 Cover and Table of Contents!


All of the content will be available in the eBook version on the day of release.

The free online content will be released in 2 stages- half on day of release and half on February 5.

Don’t forget eBook Subscriptions to Uncanny Magazine are available from Weightless Books and Amazon Kindle, and you can support us on our Patreon!

Uncanny Magazine Issue 26 Table of Contents

Julie Dillon- Pearls and Stardust

The Uncanny Valley (1/1)

Fran Wilde- “A Catalog of Storms” (1/1)
Natalia Theodoridou- “Poems Written While” (1/1)
Senaa Ahmad- “Nothing to Fear, Nothing to Fear” (1/1)

Delilah S. Dawson- “The Willows” (2/5)
Marissa Lingen- “The Thing, With Feathers” (2/5)
Inda Lauryn- “Dustdaughter” (2/5)

Ellen Kushner- “The Duke of Riverside” (1/1)

Linda D. Addison- “Safe Havens– WFC Award Ceremony 2018 Toastmaster Speech” (1/1)
Elsa Sjunneson-Henry- “How to Make a Paper Crane” (1/1)

Alec Nevala-Lee- “The Most Powerful Force” (2/5)
Keidra Chaney- “What It Feels Like for a Fangirl in the Age of Late Capitalism” (2/5)

Cassandra Khaw- “A Letter From One Woman to Another” (1/1)
Sonya Taaffe- “The Watchword” (1/1)

Hal Y. Zhang- “Steeped in Stars” (2/5)
Jennifer Crow- “Red Berries” (2/5)

Caroline M. Yoachim Interviews Natalia Theodoridou (1/1)

Caroline M. Yoachim Interviews Marissa Lingen (2/5)

Podcast 26A (1/1)
Fran Wilde- “A Catalog of Storms,” as read by Erika Ensign
Cassandra Khaw- “A Letter From One Woman to Another,” as read by Stephanie Malia Morris
Lynne M. Thomas Interviews Fran Wilde

Podcast 26B (2/5)
Delilah S. Dawson- “The Willows,” as read by Stephanie Malia Morris
Hal Y. Zhang- “Steeped in Stars.” as read by Erika Ensign
Lynne M. Thomas Interviews Delilah S. Dawson

The Disabled People Destroy Fantasy Guidelines

Reading period: January 15th, 2019 to February 28th 2019. Please do not submit anything until January 15th. Emails containing submissions will be deleted. (Uncanny Magazine uses the Moksha submission system.)


Who can submit:

We welcome submission from writers who identify themselves as disabled. Identity is what matters for this issue. What kinds of disabilities? All of them. Invisible and visible. Physical disabilities, learning disabilities, intellectual disabilities, mental health disabilities, and neurodiversity.

Yes, even if your disability is a recently acquired one.

Yes, even if your disability is static, or if it isn’t.

Yes, even if you’ve had your disability since birth.

Yes, even if you use adaptive devices only SOME of the time.

Yes, you.

Please read Elsa Sjunneson-Henry’s essay “Disabled Enough” if you have any doubts.

So, if you identify as disabled across any of these definitions or others, we want to hear from you!


A Note on Manuscript Guidelines For Fiction and Nonfiction: 
14pt font, please. Serifed (ex: Time New Roman, Courier, Garamond). Double spaced.

Please let the editors know if you need accommodations as well.



Fiction Editor: Katharine Duckett

We do not require stories to explore issues relating to disability, though we welcome them. We’re seeking fantasy stories that invite readers to enter worlds they’ve never seen before. We’re looking for immediate and visceral tales of danger, fun and inventive adventures, and fateful journeys to distant lands or to the dragon’s lair in your own backyard. We’re looking for intricate, challenging tales with gorgeous prose, verve, and imagination that elicit strong emotions and challenge beliefs.

We want the stories you’ve been yearning to encounter in the world. We want to engage with the characters you want to meet in fiction.

Length: Between 750-6000 words

Payment: $.08 per word

Fiction Submission Procedures:

1- Please submit your story via Uncanny‘s Moksha submission system.

2- All stories should be in 14pt font, serifed (ex: Time New Roman, Courier, Garamond). double spaced, and attached in .RTF, .DOC, or .DOCX formats.

3- Your cover letter should contain the length of your story, your significant publishing history and awards, and information that might be relevant to that specific submission.

4- Please do not send multiple submissions at once, or submissions simultaneously submitted at another market or anthology.

5- We will try to respond to all submissions in 60 days. Please feel free to query uncannymagazine [at] gmail [dot] com if we’ve had your submission for over 75 days.



Nonfiction Editor: Nicolette Barischoff

We are looking for essays that explore the relationship between fantastical literature and disability.

You are free to approach this exploration from any angle you wish. And we do mean any angle.

Some possible essay topics include: Tropes of disability within the fantasy genre, studies of disabled characters in specific works of fantasy, examinations of a particular author’s treatment of disability, examinations of  secondary worlds and how those worlds might relate to disabled citizens, personal narratives as a disabled writer or reader, magic and disability, fantasy and ageism, fantasy and wellness…

And the list goes on!

Note that while expressing frustration with some of the genre’s more ableist tendencies is a fine thing to do, essays that are purely demolitionist in nature can begin to feel very reductive, and can leave us with the feeling that someone has come in and torn down all the sets and left us sitting on a bare, badly-lit stage. Paint us a picture. What are you hoping to build? What would you have others build? It’s been a difficult couple of years for most of us. What’s giving you hope right now? What about the fantasy genre do you love?

For Nonfiction we will accept either a pitch, or a fully written essay for submissions. If you are submitting a pitch, please make sure it outlines exactly what you hope to accomplish.

All essay types and writing styles are welcome.

Length: Between 1000-2500 words

Payment: $60 an essay.

Nonfiction Submission Procedures:

1- Please submit your essay or pitch via Uncanny‘s Moksha submission system.

2- All essays should be in a standard font, double spaced, and attached in .RTF, .DOC, or .DOCX formats.

3- Your cover letter should contain the length of your essay (if applicable), your significant publishing history and awards, and any information that might be relevant to your submission. Don’t worry if you don’t have a publishing history. We’re looking for new voices as well as old pros. Just tell us who you are. Feel free to tell us about your specific experience with disability, but you are by no means obligated to share any information you do not feel is relevant.

4- Please do not send multiple submissions at once, or submissions simultaneously submitted at another market or anthology.

5- We will try to respond to all submissions in 60 days. Please feel free to query uncannymagazine [at] gmail [dot] com if we’ve had your submission for over 75 days.



Poetry Editor: Lisa M. Bradley

We do not require poetry to explore issues relating to disability, but we do encourage it. We are looking for strong, emotional poetry with multiple layers of meaning. We are open to the full gamut of emotions. Hope, love, and joy can be just as powerful as fear, hate, and grief. Clear language can be just as vibrant and powerful as more intricate language. Most of all, we are looking for poetry that has a unique voice and doesn’t shy away from engaging with its core issues and themes.

Length: No line limits

Payment: $30 per poem

Poetry Submission Procedures:

1- Please submit your poem(s) via Uncanny‘s Moksha submission system.

2- Your cover letter should contain the length of your poem(s), your significant publishing history and awards, and information that might be relevant to that specific submission. Don’t worry if you have no previous publications. Everyone starts somewhere, so please don’t self-reject.

3- You may send up to five poems at a time, but please send them in separate files through the Moksha system in .RTF, .DOC, or .DOCX formats. Please do not send poems simultaneously submitted at another market or anthology.

4- We try to respond to all submissions in 60 days. Please feel free to query uncannymagazine [at] gmail [dot] com if we’ve had your submission for over 75 days.



Disabled People Destroy Fantasy is a continuation of the Destroy series in which we, disabled members of the science fiction community, will put ourselves where we belong: at the center of the story. Often, disabled people are an afterthought, a punchline, or simply forgotten in the face of new horizons, scientific discovery, or magical invention. We intend to destroy ableism and bring forth voices, narratives, and truths most important to disabled writers, editors, and creators with this special issue.

(Special thanks to the Disabled People Destroy Science Fiction guest editors Elsa Sjunneson-Henry, Dominik Parisien, Nicolette Barischoff, S. Qiouyi Lu, and Judith Tarr for developing the original version of these guidelines.)

Uncanny Staff Members Share Their Holiday Favorites

Happy Holidays, Space Unicorns! There’s plenty of the holiday spirit here at Uncanny, so several of our editorial staff decided to share some of our favorite pieces of media for the holiday season. If you’re looking for something fun to watch, listen to, or read as the holidays approach, we hope you’ll find something to enjoy in our suggestions!

Erika Ensign, Podcast Co-Producer and Podcast Reader
This Christmas I bring you the gift of music! I used to pretend I hated holiday music because it wasn’t “cool” to like it. When I grew out of caring what other people think about the things I enjoy, I admitted I love December because radio stations (two in my city of Edmonton!) play nothing but holiday and holiday-adjacent music. (I’m sorry, but “River” by Joni Mitchell isn’t really a Christmas song, even though it mentions Christmas. Neither is Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.”) Sadly, local radio is rather limited in its choices. There are so many great holiday songs I never hear on the radio, so I wanted to share a few of the poppier tunes I wish I heard more often.

“I Want an Alien for Christmas,” by Fountains of Wayne, is a delightful little ditty that’s about exactly what you’d expect from the title. It is upbeat and peppy and full of clever turns of phrase like “I want a little green guy about three feet high with 17 eyes who knows how to fly.”

YouTube (animated fanvid)
YouTube “lyrics” video

Weezer released a two-track Christmas EP in 2000, which has brought me a great deal of holiday joy over the years. “The Christmas Song” is very much an example of Rivers Cuomo at his whiny-piniest, but that’s one of the things that drew me to Weezer in the first place, so I am so on board for a schmaltzy-waltzy song about being lonely at the holidays. “Christmas Celebration” is much more upbeat—at least the music itself is. The lyrics are cynical and sarcastic. One of my favorite genres is poppy-peppy songs with pessimistic lyrics, so I am here for this. In the interest of calling out the problematic bit of a problematic fave, I really do not like the fat-shaming in this one so I come back to this track less often than the previous tune, even though this one is peppier and I like the tune more.


Stephanie Malia Morris, Podcast Reader
It’s that time of year again, when a combination of so-close-you-can-taste-it holiday PTO and end-of-semester stress and relief (I work in a college library and absorb both from students and faculty alike) send me tailspinning into various obsessions. This year’s monkey is named murder: I’ve been gobbling up Tana French’s Dublin Murder Squad series while I wait (#223 of 223 holds!) for her latest book, The Witch Elm, to arrive at the local library. I did not realize I needed the Dublin Murder Squad books until I read In the Woods and fell into immediate, transcendent hate with the main character, a detective haunted, much like Scrooge, by the ghosts of past and present raised by the novel’s central case. The Dublin Murder Squad is everything I have ever wanted in a good murder mystery: tight plotting, intriguing characters, detailed research, settings so vivid they too are characters. As a holiday bonus, the series has a thing for the holidays and winter weather, from unheated interrogation rooms to catching murderers over Christmas dinner.

Chimedum Ohaegbu, Assistant Editor
Spoilers, but: this movie’s an absolute delight.

Animaniacs came into my life in a somewhat backwards manner: its finale (this film) released a year after I was born, and by the time I was old enough to watch TV, the most regular rerun from the series was Wakko’s Wish every Christmas. It’s highly representative of the zany, whip-smart show.

In Wakko’s Wish, orphans Yakko, Wakko, and Dot live in a town suffering under the greedy king’s tyrannical fist. Dot is sick in a Victorian-waif way, and Wakko works for a year to earn a ha’penny (as a kid, I thought this was an imaginary, infinitely large unit; learning he’d earned half a penny is both hilarious and almost relatable) to pay for Dot’s medical expenses. The ha’penny is promptly lost to the king’s tax collector, and desperate, Wakko wishes on a star. It works! Sort of: the Warners must travel to where the star fell to claim their wish, and when the town—and the king—catch on, it becomes a race.

If you’re not already raring to (re)watch Wakko’s Wish, consider its fantastic sense of humor and its extremely catchy tunes. “It’s all for one and one for all — times three,” sing the Warners in a blend of individuality and common goals that I really relate to as the eldest of a trio of siblings. Overall, Wakko’s Wish is a great movie if you want to add some festive songs to your roster while visiting old friends.

Steven Schapansky, Podcast Co-Producer
I’ve never had a favourite Christmas movie or TV show growing up. I vaguely remember watching bits of The Grinch Who Stole Christmas and Frosty the Snowman when I was a kid, but it never really stuck. Actually, my main memory of watching a movie at Christmas is when my Mom needed to wrap some presents and sent my Dad on a mission to the local theatre to keep me and my sister occupied by watching “Pinocchio” (a movie that traumatizes me still).

The award for my favourite Christmas viewing was finally claimed on Christmas Day, 2010, when I watched the Doctor Who Christmas Special A Christmas Carol. It was the first such special for the new Doctor Matt Smith, as well as the Yuletide debut for head writer Steven Moffat. Moffat crafted a brilliant time travel infused take on the traditional Charles Dickens tale, which involves the Doctor having to convince a miserly Scrooge-esque figure to allow a crashing spaceship to be saved by going back in time to show him his past, present, and future, and how he could be a better person. It’s at times hilarious, thrilling, sad, moving, and it’s topped off by a wonderful child-like performance from Matt Smith. It also has a flying shark. God bless us, everyone.

Lynne M. Thomas, Co-Publisher/Co-Editor-in-Chief and Interviewer
I’m a sucker for The Avengers, the 1960s spy show with a strong leaning towards SF/F, particularly the era featuring Patrick McNee as John Steed and Dame Diana Rigg as Mrs. Peel. Steed and Peel have a delightful on-screen relationship where the champagne flows freely, they respect each others’ skill sets and rely upon each other utterly as partners while looking FABULOUS, and they flirt outrageously, all the while foiling 60s spy plots. The holiday episode “Too Many Christmas Trees takes this to its best possible extreme, introducing telepaths that are trying to steal secret’s from Steed’s brain at a Dickensian-themed Christmas house party. Which means that we get not only fabulous 60s clothing, we get costumes, including Steed dressed as Sidney Carton from A Tale of Two Cities (swoon) and Peel dressed as Oliver Twist. While I am here for all of the Steed/Peel banter, and it is DELIGHTFUL, my favorite part is the ending kicker, which takes a long-running subtext and makes it text.

Michael Damian Thomas, Co-Publisher/Co-Editor-in-Chief
People are much too hard on the Star Wars Holiday Special (Singing Bea Arthur! Life Day! A VERY HAPPY Grandpa Itchy!), but I’m not here to defend that. No, I am here to tell you all about the greatest moment in Star Wars holiday history: Christmas in the Stars: Star Wars Christmas Album

This glorious album was created by Meco, the genius behind the Billboard #1 hit disco version of “Star Wars Theme/Cantina Band” (he later followed that up with the “Ewok Celebration” which features a RAP BREAKDOWN IN EWOKESE!). 1980’s Christmas in the Stars is a Star Wars concept album featuring Anthony Daniels as C-3PO. He and R2-D2 are visiting a droid toy factory making toys for the S. Clause. What follows are a series of songs about their Space Toy-making adventures and teaching R2-D2 the true meaning of Christmas! Listen to Anthony Daniels talk-singing like a metal Henry Higgins in “Christmas in the Stars”! Dazzle at the should-have-been-a-holiday-standard “What Can You Get a Wookiee for Christmas (When He Already Owns a Comb?)! And be amazed by “R2-D2 We Wish You a Merry Christmas,” which features the first recorded vocals of Jon Bon Jovi! Really.

Listen! Enjoy! Discover the meaning of bells in space! Then go and enjoy the oral history about the making of THE GREATEST CHRISTMAS ALBUM OF ALL TIME!

Michi Trota, Managing Editor and Nonfiction Editor
If you follow me on Twitter, you’ve very likely seen me geeking out over Leverage. The show hits so many of my favorite story-telling spots: found-family, intricate puzzle heists, pop culture references, competence porn, a character who loves food. And there’s even two holiday themed episodes! While “The Toy Job” in season 5 is perfectly lovely, the season 3 episode, “The Ho, Ho, Ho Job” is on my shortlist of “things I watch every year for the holidays.” The episode has everything: a villainous plot to exploit Christmas for selfish gain, a literal plea for help from Santa, heists-within-heists with loads of delightful misdirection, a character’s grumpiness over the holidays that belies a truly giving nature, sharp dialog and banter, and even Die Hard references (Go Team “Die Hard Is a Christmas Movie”). Most importantly, the episode doesn’t just show how good Nate, Sophie, Eliot, Hardison, and Parker are at what they do, it’s the perfect snapshot of how much of a family they’ve grown into, and how deeply they’ve come to respect and understand each other. I can’t think of anything better for the holidays.

Announcing the Disabled People Destroy Fantasy Guest Poetry Editor!

Fantastic news, Space Unicorns! We can now announce another Disabled People Destroy Fantasy  GUEST EDITOR!

The Guest Poetry Editor is… Lisa M. Bradley!!!


Originally from South Texas, Lisa M. Bradley now lives in Iowa with her spouse and their teenager. Her speculative fiction and poetry examine borders, taboos, and transgressions, no doubt influenced by her experiences growing up a bi-ethnic bisexual Tejana living with an invisible illness on an international border. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Strange Horizons, Uncanny, Fireside, and Beneath Ceaseless Skies, among other venues. Her first collection of fiction and poetry isThe Haunted Girl. Watch for her debut novel, EXILE, coming from Rosarium in 2019. For updates, follow Lisa on Twitter (@cafenowhere) or check out her website:

We are so thrilled to be working with Lisa! Disabled People Destroy Fantasy will be AMAZING! Thank you again to all of the Uncanny Magazine Year 4/Disabled People Destroy Science Fiction Kickstarter Backers who made the Disabled People Destroy Fantasy special issue happen!

Uncanny Magazine Managing Editor Michi Trota Is Also Now the Nonfiction Editor!

Fabulous news, Space Unicorns! Uncanny Magazine’s Managing Editor Michi Trota is getting an additional title! Along with being Uncanny’s PHENOMENAL Managing Editor, Michi will now have the additional title of Nonfiction Editor starting with issue 26!

Michi has been involved with the nonfiction editing since day one, and we are super excited to have her  increase her involvement in this area. Congratulations, Michi!

Chimedum Ohaegbu Receives Katherine Brearley Arts Scholarship

Fantastic news, Space Unicorns! Uncanny‘s fabulous Assistant Editor Chimedum Ohaegbu is being honored as one of the recipients of the Katherine Brearley Arts Scholarship at the University of British Columbia!

In selecting recipients, consideration is given to both scholarly excellence and the demonstrated ability to work with and lead others in student and community activities at the university, local, national, and/or international level.

Chimedum has done a huge amount of work and contributed her leadership skills to her community to earn this award. She’s an integral part of Uncanny‘s success, and we’re so proud of her for this achievement! Please join us in congratulating her!

Uncanny Magazine 2018 Award Eligibility

It’s the time of year when people post their year-in-reviews to remind voters for the different SF/F awards what’s out there that they might have missed and which categories these stories are eligible in (especially for the Hugo Awards and Nebula Awards). 2018 was the fourth full year of Uncanny Magazine (Issues 20 through 25, including the Disabled People Destroy Science Fiction special issue). We are extremely proud of the year we had.

This year, Uncanny Magazine is still eligible for the Best Semiprozine Hugo Award. Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas are also still eligible for the Best Editor (Short Form) Hugo Award for editing issues 20-23, and 25. (Note: If you are nominating the Thomases in this category, please continue to nominate them together. They are a co-editing team.)

The stories listed below are eligible in either the short story or novelette categories of the SF/F awards. If you are a SFWA member nominating for the Nebula Awards, you can find eBook copies of these stories in the SFWA Forums.

Please also note that essays are eligible for the Best Related Work Hugo Award, and poetry is eligible for the Rhysling Award. As Uncanny is a semiprozine, all of the essays and original art also contribute towards the creators’ Best Fan Writer and Best Fan Artist Hugo Award eligibility.

ETA: Here is Managing Editor/Nonfiction Editor Michi Trota’s 2018 Awards Eligibility post!

And here is interviewer Caroline M. Yoachim’s 2018 Awards Eligibility post!

And here is Assistant Editor Chimedum Ohaegbu’s 2018 Awards Eligibility post!

And here is Podcast Producer/Reader Erika Ensign’s 2018 Awards Eligibility post!

Novelettes (7500-17,500 Words):

How to Swallow the Moon by Isabel Yap

Disconnect by Fran Wilde

The Thing About Ghost Stories  by Naomi Kritzer

Short Stories (Under 7500 Words):

Contingency Plans for the Apocalypse by S.B. Divya

The Hydraulic Emperor by Arkady Martine

She Still Loves the Dragon by Elizabeth Bear

The Utmost Bound by Vivian Shaw

Your Slaughterhouse, Your Killing Floorby Sunny Moraine

Lines of Growth, Lines of Passage by Marissa Lingen

The Date by R.K. Kalaw

And Yet by A. T. Greenblatt

I Frequently Hear Music in the Very Heart of Noise by Sarah Pinsker

Like a River Loves the Sky by Emma Törzs

The Testimony of Dragon’s Teeth by Sarah Monette

Pistol Grip by Vina Jie-Min Prasad

The Howling Detective by Brandon O’Brien

Discard the Sun, for It Has Failed Us by Marina J. Lostetter

Blessings by Naomi Novik

Sucks (to Be You) by Katharine Duckett

If We Die Unjustified by A. Merc Rustad

What Gentle Women Dare by Kelly Robson

The Cook by C.L. Clark

By Claw, By Hand, By Silent Speech by Elsa Sjunneson-Henry & A. Merc Rustad

You Can Make a Dinosaur, but You Can’t Help Me by K.M. Szpara

Bones in the Rock by R.K. Kalaw

Red Lizard Brigade by Sam J. Miller

The Emigrants’ Guide to Oregon, California, and the Unknown by Brit E. B. Hvide

Give the People What They Want by Alex Bledsoe

Everything Under Heaven by Anya Ow

The Tale of the Three Beautiful Raptor Sisters, and the Prince Who Was Made of Meat by Brooke Bolander

Nails in My Feet by Mary Robinette Kowal

Heavy Lifting by A. T. Greenblatt

The Frequency of Compassion by A. Merc Rustad

The House on the Moon by William Alexander

An Open Letter to the Family by Jennifer Brozek

Birthday Girl by Rachel Swirsky

Abigail Dreams of Weather by Stu West

This Will Not Happen to You by Marissa Lingen

The Things I Miss the Most by Nisi Shawl

The Stars Above by Katharine Duckett

A House by the Sea by P. H. Lee

The Rose MacGregor Drinking and Admiration Society by T. Kingfisher

My Name Is Cybernetic Model XR389F, and I Am Beautiful by Monica Valentinelli

Monologue by an unnamed mage, recorded at the brink of the end by Cassandra Khaw

Uncanny Magazine Issue 25 Cover and Table of Contents!


All of the content will be available in the eBook version on the day of release.

The free online content will be released in 2 stages- half on day of release and half on December 4.

Don’t forget eBook Subscriptions to Uncanny Magazine are available from Weightless Books and Amazon Kindle, and you can support us on our Patreon!

Uncanny Magazine Issue 25 Table of Contents


John Picacio-  La Valiente  

The Uncanny Valley (11/6)
Isabel Yap- “How to Swallow the Moon” (11/6)
T. Kingfisher- “The Rose MacGregor Drinking and Admiration Society” (11/6)
Naomi Kritzer- “The Thing About Ghost Stories” (12/4)
Monica Valentinelli- “My Name is Cybernetic Model XR389F, and I Am Beautiful” (12/4)
Cassandra Khaw- “Monologue by an unnamed mage, recorded at the brink of the end” (12/4)
Sofia Samatar- “An Account of the Land of Witches” (11/6)
Diana M. Pho- “ConCrit in Comments Only: What Writing Fanfiction Taught Me as an Editor” (11/6)
Steven H Silver- “Jewish Science Fiction and Fantasy: A Primer” (11/6)
Sarah Goslee- “There and Back Again” (12/4)
Nilah Magruder- “Through a Painted Door: An Ode to Children’s Science Fiction/Fantasy Art” (12/4)
Beth Cato- “smile” (11/6)
Hal Y. Zhang- “cardioid” (11/6)
Leah Bobet- “Osiris” (12/4)
Sharon Hsu- “Translatio” (12/4)
Caroline M. Yoachim Interviews Isabel Yap (11/6)
Caroline M. Yoachim Interviews Monica Valentinelli (12/4)
Podcast 25A (11/6)
T. Kingfisher- “The Rose MacGregor Drinking and Admiration Society,” as read by Erika Ensign
Hal Y. Zhang- “cardioid,” as read by Stephanie Malia Morris
Lynne M. Thomas Interviews T. Kingfisher (Ursula Vernon)

Podcast 25B (12/4)

Naomi Kritzer- “The Thing About Ghost Stories,”  as read by Stephanie Malia Morris
Leah Bobet- “Osiris,” as read by Erika Ensign
Lynne M. Thomas Interviews Naomi Kritzer

On Writing the Exhibit Text for Worlds Beyond Here: Expanding the Universe of APA Science Fiction by Michi Trota

Being a science fiction fan has opened a lot of doors for me that I would never have thought to even knock on several years ago, and “writing the text for a museum exhibit exploring the history and representation of Asian Pacific Americans in science fiction” would definitely have fallen in that category; yet here I am, on my way to Seattle to because I got to do just that for the Wing Luke Museum’s new exhibit, Worlds Beyond Here: Expanding the Universe of APA Science Fiction, which opens on Friday, October 12, 2018, and will run through September 15, 2019.

The exhibit covers pop culture touchstones like Star Trek, Star Wars, time travel, “cli-fi,” and sentient robots, as well as how APA creators are imagining silkpunk worlds, reclaiming the genre from Orientalism, envisioning exploration narratives free from colonialism, and grappling with the ethics and morality of technological access and development, as well as science fiction’s ever-present questions of what it means to be human—all through the lens of APA experiences and perspectives.

I’m excited to recognize many of the names of creators, actors, artists, and other notable APA figures in science fiction, but even better were the names I didn’t know and got to learn about while writing the exhibit text. I’m particularly thrilled the exhibit explores the topic of Pacific Indigenous futurisms as well. The importance of understanding what it means to be APA in science fiction, and to have our experiences acknowledged isn’t even a question in this exhibit—it’s taken as fact that our history and visibility matter, and that’s incredible to me because despite how much I loved science fiction growing up, it often felt like the genre and community didn’t actually love me back, or even care about people like me. And I know I’m not alone in feeling that way. I hope that by seeing this exhibit, others who have felt similarly will be able to see how in fact APA perspectives and creations are thriving in science fiction, and making more space and opportunities for more APA creators and fans to participate and be welcomed.

Being a fan of science fiction (and fantasy) has in large part been the reason I’ve been able to connect with and learn from other Asian Pacific Americans about what it means to be part of a larger collective of marginalized cultures. It is because of science fiction and the many, many APA creators and fans I’ve met that only now, heading toward middle age, am I finally comfortable exploring the complex and often deeply painful questions of what being APA means to me, and how our portrayals in science fiction, pop culture, and beyond irrevocably shape our perceptions and concepts of identity. Contrary to what I’d been told and what I saw growing up, APAs are intensively active in science fiction, with contributions to and influences on the genre that are extensive and inspiring. Our stories, our faces, our work, are irrevocably, proudly, part of science fiction, and I’m so proud to be part in this because not only did I write the exhibit text, I am also loaning my first Hugo Award (2016) as Uncanny Magazine’s Managing Editor, for which I became the first Filipina to win a Hugo, to the exhibit for the next year!

A whole museum exhibit dedicated to highlighting APA history in science fiction, and getting to be a part of it, means more to me than I can say. The fact that the exhibit opens during Filipino American History Month is also deeply meaningful (*waves at all my Fil-Am Spec Fic Fam who are too numerous to name*). Writing the exhibit text was probably one of the most challenging things I’ve done, because how can you distill decades of history and do justice to just how much APA creators and fans have done in science fiction? I hope what I’ve written for the exhibit makes it clear to visitors why representation matters, because science fiction has been an important part of how APA creators and fans see ourselves, the art and stories we make, and the worlds we’re able to imagine. It matters that we can see ourselves, and that others can see us, in a genre that has enormous influence on the world and cultures around us. Above all, I hope it’s clear that there is space for all of us in science fiction, and that space is continuing to grow. Now all it needs are more of us to fill that space with our stories, our art, our visions. Get to it, friends, we can’t wait for you to join us.

Many thanks to the Wing Luke Museum for extending this opportunity to me, especially Exhibit Developer Mikala Woodward for her infinite patience and encouragement.

Worlds Beyond Here: Expanding the Universe of APA Science Fiction

October 12, 2018 – September 15, 2019

Wing Luke Museum, Seattle, WA

Admission includes all-day access to other museum exhibits, including Day in the Life of Bruce Lee: Adult $17; senior (62+): $15; student (13-18 or with ID): $12.50; youth (5-12): $10; children under 5: free


Meet Uncanny Magazine’s New Assistant Editor, Chimedum Ohaegbu!

Fabulous news, Space Unicorns! Our awesome Editorial Intern Chimedum Ohaegbu is becoming the new Uncanny Magazine Assistant Editor! Chimedum is a passionate fan of science fiction and fantasy, with impressive editorial experience, and has a done a tremendous job as our Editorial Intern! We’re eager and excited to work with her on more Space Unicorn shenanigans!

Chimedum Ohaegbu attends the University of British Columbia in pursuit of hummingbird sightings and a dual degree in English literature and creative writing. The 2017 recipient of the full Tan Seagull Scholarship for Young Writers, her work is published or forthcoming in Strange Horizons and This Magazine. When she’s not yelling approvingly about cool stuff she’s read, she’s usually editing one thing or another.

Here she was answering some interview questions during our Year 5 Kickstarter!