The Uncanny Valley



We are writing this in an undisclosed location in the woods of the Upper Midwest, surrounded by friends and magic. This is a brief pause to reenergize. As many of you know by now, Lynne has Big Awesome Secret News, and soon major changes are coming for the Thomases. We are as ready as we can be, but big changes are always frightening, especially when the world remains terrifying. But amazing things are coming for us, and for the magazine!

First, some bittersweet news. The marvelous and phenomenal Julia Rios will be leaving us to explore some new opportunities after Issue 18/19. We can’t overstate how amazing her work has been for Uncanny. Julia is simply a most excellent human being, and one of the best editors in the industry. We know she will continue to do amazing things. We will greatly miss her in every possible way, though we are glad we get to keep her around for most of the year!

And now the good news! We are adding TWO new staff members! Our new Poetry/Reprint Editor will be the marvelous Mimi Mondal! Mimi is an astounding writer (please read her powerful Uncanny essay) and was an editor at Penguin India. Our new interviewer will be the sensational Shana DuBois! Shana is a writer for the Barnes & Noble Sci-Fi and Fantasy Blog, nerds of a feather, and previously for SF Signal. We are thrilled to have both on the team. Welcome, new Space Unicorns!

And now, our huge news! In a few weeks, we will be launching our annual Kickstarter, but this time with an exciting difference. For lo, this includes Kickstarting our long anticipated Disabled People Destroy Science Fiction Double Issue along with Kickstarting Year Four of the magazine! The wonderful people at Lightspeed have handed off their amazing Destroy series to us, and we couldn’t be more thrilled about this upcoming project. Like the previous Destroys, the editing duties will be handled by a series of Special Guest Editors. The Disabled People Destroy Team are:

Editor-in-Chief/Fiction Editor: Dominik Parisien

Editor-in-Chief/Nonfiction Editor: Elsa Sjunneson-Henry

Reprint Editor: Judith Tarr

Poetry Editor: S. Qiouyi Lu

Personal Essays Editor: Nicolette Barischoff

The Kickstarter will be running from July 24 to August 23. We will be announcing some of the phenomenal solicited contributors for the Destroy issue and for Year Four later this month, so watch our blog and social media! (By the time you read this, the vast majority of backer rewards from Year Three will have been sent out. Our Space Unicorn Precision Envelope Stuffing Team has been busy. If you were expecting a reward and didn’t receive it, please do get in touch!)

We hope you will consider joining or rejoining the Space Unicorn Ranger Corps. We are very proud of the work we are doing here, and we hope to give you another exquisite year of Uncanny. Shine on against the darkness, Space Unicorns!

When you read this, the Locus Awards are over. We are still so honored that the Thomases, the magazine, and Alyssa Wong’s and Brooke Bolander’s 2016 Uncanny stories were finalists. Win or lose, it is always such an honor. The same goes for the Hugo Awards, which are coming up in August.

We had amazing times at the SFWA Nebula Conference and WisCon. The Space Unicorn Party at WisCon seemed to be a massive success with the unicorn glitter cakes (UBE!) and Liz Argall’s balloon animals. We are sure Michael also had a great time at the Locus Award Weekend. Though he had to travel without the rest of the Thomases, word is he was there with the ICFA alligator! They had a marvelous time and didn’t eat any young writers.

Michael will be at Readercon in Boston from July 13-16, so please say hi if you see him! Sadly, no Thomases at Worldcon 75, but Michi Trota and Julia Rios will be there representing Uncanny.

And now, the excitement that is Uncanny Magazine Issue 17! Our stunning original cover is Kirbi Fagan’s “Enceladus.” Our fiction this month includes Seanan McGuire’s delightful and lyrical “How the Maine Coon Cat Learned to Love the Sea,” Kat Howard’s haunting tale of family “A Nest of Ghosts, a House of Birds,” Maurice Broaddus’s compelling exploration of myth and magic in the city “The Ache of Home,” Mary Robinette Kowal’s powerful tale of family and sacrifice “The Worshipful Society of Glovers,” Cassandra Khaw’s raw exploration of love and desperation “I Built This City For You,” and T. Kingfisher’s poignant post-apocalyptic “Packing.” Our reprint is Aliette de Bodard’s “Children of Thorns, Children of Water” which ties into her Fallen universe, originally published as a preorder award for her novel The House of Binding Thorns.

Our essays this issue include Sarah Gailey’s exploration of “Why Millennials Yearn for Magical Schools,” Dimas Ilaw’s important “After a Revolution,” another essay in Sam J. Miller’s “Resistance 101: Basics of Community Organizing for SF/F” series, “Creators and Consumers, Volume Three: My First Civil Disobedience,” and Alasdair Stuart’s exploration of fan response to media texts “Dean Winchester and Commander Shepherd Walk into a Bar: Why Fanon Matters.”

Issue 17’s gorgeous poetry includes Joyce Chng’s staccato, rhythmic “Qi Xi,” Shveta Thakrar and Sara Cleto’s lyrical “Starskin, Sealskin,” Chloe N. Clark’s pointed “Questions We Asked for the Girls Turned to Limbs,” and Rose Lemberg’s moving “Domovoi.”

We close this issue with two excellent interviews by Julia Rios: one with Maurice Broaddus, and the other with Mary Robinette Kowal.

The Uncanny Magazine Podcast 17A features Seanan McGuire’s “How the Maine Coon Cat Learned to Love the Sea” as read by Amal El-Mohtar, Shveta Thakrar and Sara Cleto’s “Starskin, Sealskin” as read by Erika Ensign, and Seanan McGuire interviewed by Julia Rios. Episode 17B features Cassandra Khaw’s “I Built This City For You” as read by Erika Ensign, Rose Lemberg’s “Domovoi” as read by Amal El-Mohtar, and Cassandra Khaw interviewed by Julia Rios.

As always, we are deeply grateful for your support of Uncanny Magazine. Fight on, Space Unicorns!


Lynne M. Thomas & Michael Damian Thomas

Lynne and Michael are the Publishers/Editors-in-Chief of Uncanny Magazine.

Ten-time Hugo, British Fantasy, and 2-time Parsec Award-winner Lynne M. Thomas was the Editor-in-Chief of Apex Magazine (2011-2013). She co-edited the Hugo Award-winning Chicks Dig Time Lords (with Tara O’Shea) and Hugo Award-finalist Chicks Dig Comics (with Sigrid Ellis).

Seven-time Hugo, British Fantasy, and Parsec Award-winner Michael Damian Thomas was the former Managing Editor of Apex Magazine (2012-2013), co-edited the Hugo-finalist Queers Dig Time Lords (with Sigrid Ellis), and co-edited Glitter & Mayhem (with John Klima and Lynne M. Thomas).

Together, they solve mysteries.

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