One of my daily visits online for SF, comic and general geek-pop news is IO9.com from Gawker media. (Yes, I know. Gawker’s not all evil. I think.) Amidst the usual news on movies, TV shows, comics and the danger of cats getting telekinetic powers, today I spotted an intriguing article about the online site VICE publishing SF stories online in a new magazine called Terraform. I won’t reiterate the whole article here, but I want to point out the unusual way VICE is going about it. They are purposely publishing stories that they hope will sort of go viral and get shares along in the various social media feeds we all have. They’ll try to do this by, well, being topical to whatever the big topics are of the day. As the IO9 article says:
“How are they going to do this? By “seiz[ing] upon and play[ing] off the zeitgeist” — so if everybody is already freaking out about drones, they’ll publish a story that has to do with drones, and become part of the conversation. This is a tremendously ambitious idea, one which would presumably require having a lot of stories in inventory waiting for the right news cycle — but if it works, it could make science fiction part of our discussion of technology and science in a new way.”
It’s an interesting idea that I hope catches on. I love seeing new venues for authors to get their work read that don’t rely on “old media.” Let’s see how this little experiment goes.
The firs issue includes stories by Cory Doctorow, Bruce Sterling, and Claire L. Evans. They plan to publish a new story a week and are seeking submissions. They want 2,000 words or less and pay $0.20 per word. And, stories can be in many types of style, but they prefer stories topical to issues today. In other words, more “believable” sci-fi than epic space opera. Try Terraform here and maybe whip up some stories to submit. I know I’m thinking of some…