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Once, SF and fantasy fiction magazines used to pile up so fast that it seemed as though more people were writing them then reading them – in fact, this was probably true because this so called ’golden age’ soon passed, produced a lot of old rubbish, and, anyway, it was more of an American thing anyway. Now, there is only one monthly SF fiction magazine in the UK (and possibly anywhere for all I know) and that is Interzone. Wouldn’t it be nice if that meant that there was a whole month’s worth of good stuff every month, without fail? Well, Interzone nearly always delivers just that. The short story is a form of fiction which seems to thrive in some genres and not others. The realms of science fiction and fantasy just fit short stories, and always have. If you enjoy good SF&F, you probably like short stories. And if you do, you should certainly consider a subscription to Interzone. If you don't, by the way ,just skip the rest. Each month, there are five or six new stories from big names and new names. Like all edited publications, the quality varies but in this case it very rarely falls into the unreadable category. On the contrary, rarely does an issue arrive where one of the stories or more is not outstandingly good. The magazine, supported by the Arts Council, is a very professional publication, printed on glossy paper with a colour cover, and extremely attractive and easy to read. No more ‘pulp fiction’ here! It’s hard to criticise, but from time to time the editors see fit to publish a series of stories which can get a bit tedious, especially if the series is one you don’t like. No doubt when you do like them, they are great, but I must admit the last two ‘series’ got on my nerves a bit. However, this is just a small part of the magazine which is packed with loads of other good reading even if you ignore one of the stories. You get book reviews, news, inter
views with real authors who you have heard of, and, perhaps best of all hardly ever any poetry! I keep all my old Interzones and read them again and again. There really are some great stories in my ‘pile’, and there is no other way to get to read this stuff than to get hold of a copy. Interzone is good value for money and will give you real reading pleasure.