Should Interzone publish more theme issues?
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Author:  Jetse [ Fri Jul 20, 2007 10:34 pm ]
Post subject:  Should Interzone publish more theme issues?

Should Interzone publish more theme issues?

If so, do you have any particular themes in mind?

If not, why not?

Author:  Journeymouse [ Sat Jul 21, 2007 9:15 am ]
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I would say that one issue a year (that's one out of six, right?) should be themed along the lines of Mundane SF and "sensawunda", as a way of encouraging original thinking about sub-genres that don't appear very often in Interzone. I'm not sure about the author-themes as I agree that magazines should have variety, but some authors are very adaptable and produce a great range of material, so it would depend on who, I guess.

And I have a suggestion. The head of the science department at the school I work at started a lunchtime club called "The Forbidden Corner" as a reward for good students. It's secret (we deny all knowledge, etc...) and does the experiments that don't usually get performed due to borderline safety issues. I just think it's a funky idea and I wish I'd thought of the name. So - secret societies, anybody?

Author:  Marcos74 [ Sat Jul 21, 2007 1:38 pm ]
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I voted no, mainly because I agree with the comments made by Hoing (in the regular IZ 211 thread) and Journeymouse. For me personally, once a year would be enough, but hey, that's just me...

Author:  GLP [ Sat Jul 21, 2007 7:29 pm ]
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I have voted for variety simply because that has always been one of Interzone's strong points. I like to see a wide range of stories and articles.

Author:  Roy [ Sat Jul 21, 2007 9:17 pm ]
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I've no idea how you vote in this sort of poll :oops: but from a publicity point of view a theme every so often gives me something to write about in a press release. :D

Author themes are great if it's someone as well known as Mike Moorcock.

Subject themes are more problematical as they could make the stories in the issue seem very similar. 'Mundane' probably gets round that but maybe we need more theme suggestions that could do the same trick.

I thought the 'single artist' theme of IZ 210 worked well.

Author:  Tony [ Sun Jul 22, 2007 12:11 pm ]
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Roy wrote:
Subject themes are more problematical as they could make the stories in the issue seem very similar.

Well, how about using non-genre 'themes'?

Instead of asking for stories about obviously utopian worlds, devote an issue to SF explicitly concerned with revenge or forgiveness. That would still leave plenty of room for variety of genre content.

As said above, doing a 'theme' special once a year is probably the best choice.

Author:  SFMurphy [ Sun Jul 22, 2007 5:13 pm ]
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I have to admit that as a Reader, I do not care much for theme issues. Part of why I subscribe to any given magazine is in the hopes that I will get a variety that is "diverse" (I really hate that word, it is so overused) enough that I can find at least one story in any given issue that I will be sure to enjoy.

Often with theme issues, especially if it is a theme I do not care for (I won't bother to list any) the the entire issue becomes a total loss.

Also, I get bored very easily. I find the variety of fiction usually keeps that from happening.

My humble opinion.

S. F. Murphy
Trapped in the Show Me State

Author:  Jayme Lynn Blaschke [ Mon Jul 23, 2007 6:33 pm ]
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I believe one theme issue a year could be fun. It seems counter-intuitive, but designating a theme issue frees the editorial staff to be more creative and take more chances than perhaps they would feel comfortable with under normal circumstances.

Of course, if the theme is something like "fuzzy cute kittens lapping up creme from the saucer Nana set out for them," then all bets are off.

Author:  Mike A [ Mon Jul 23, 2007 7:10 pm ]
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I voted no. I dislike themes generally (even more so in interior design than magazines!). They always strike me as unnecessary - you either sacrifice quality and diversity for thematic unity, or else you end up twisting the parameters in order to shoe-horn in unrelated good stuff, thus compromising thematic integrity. For me, IZ's only theme should be: the best damn SF stories around!

All that said, I am rather looking forward to the 'Mundane SF' issue, because it seems like an interesting experiment, with a genuinely interesting premise.

Author:  Aliette de Bodard [ Mon Jul 23, 2007 7:41 pm ]
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Hum--not sure what to vote for here.
I'm not against theme issues, as long as they're not very frequent (once a year seems about right). But I'm not wildly in favour either--which is why I voted "no".
As I noted in the other thread, I'm not in favour of author theme issues.

Author:  whoover [ Sun Jul 29, 2007 7:19 pm ]
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I voted no. I like the idea, as other people have said, of the Mundane Sf issue. But I wouldn't like to see it on a regular basis.

For me, the theme of Interzone is SF and Fantasy; nothing else.

(Plus I wasn't that keen on the MM sections; so that may be swaying my opinion!)

Author:  Leif Grahamson [ Fri Aug 03, 2007 11:46 pm ]
Post subject:  I voted yes if it's like the recently anounced Mundane...

I think it's very, very good if it's a theme with regard to an Editor influenced subject or style.

I think it's bad if it is based on a single Author (However BIG the name) simply because it can't fail to alienate the regular readers in favour of "One Issue Buys) from fans or completists of the said Author...

I'm looking forward to the Mundane issue a lot more than any regular issue.

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