by Michael D. Pederson
It’s good to be small. It seems that every issue brings a new landmark. The milepost that we’re crossing this month reads “Respectability.” You should see the gleam in my eyes every time I tell people what I’ve lined up for this issue.
Our first double-digit issue. A cover by Frank Wu. A story from Steven Johnson.
A lot of people don’t recognize these names yet, but to me they practically scream cachet.
Frank Wu recently received his third Hugo nomination for best fan artist. I met him at last year’s Philcon and he made an indelible impression. I’m absolutely thrilled to be working with Frank and I truly believe that this year will be his lucky year at Worldcon.
Steven Johnson is a great writer of classic-style science fiction who has had two stories printed in Analog. I think this is our first cross-over from someone that’s appeared in one of the “big” magazines. I’m hoping for many more.
To further cement the theme of new-found respectability… Mere days before sending this issue to the printers I received a phone call from Del Rey Books asking if I would like to interview Bruce Sterling. Sure, I understand that they’re merely using me to promote their own interests but, darn it, this is the first time that any of the major publishers have paid us any attention. To me that’s a landmark.
And that’s not all that’s been going on around here. Exactly one year ago I printed a story by C.J. Henderson (“Wezleski to the Rescue”) that I thought had the potential to to be an ongoing series. When I requested another story in the series C.J. informed me that “Wezleski” had been intended as a stand-alone story but he’d think about doing another one. I’m pleased to say that not only will we be running the sequel, “Wezleski in Love,” in our next issue but C.J. has discovered that he has enough new ideas for the character to turn it into a full collection of stories that will be printed by Marietta Publishing. I’m proud to say that Nth Degree had a tiny part in that.
What’s in the near-future for the ’zine? We have now officially overflowed our banks. I have more fiction coming in than I could possibly hope to fit into a 32-page quarterly magazine. The solution? One: We will be featuring new weekly fiction on our website (www.nthzine.com). In addition to new fiction we are lining up some previews from upcoming novels as well. Two: We will finally be expanding to 48 pages. I know I’ve been threatening to do this for a while but it’s finally upon us. So, please send us your Letters of Comment to be included in our new Feedback page. We’d love to hear what you think.
As a final note, for everyone that’s wondering what happened to “The Annals of Volusius,” I’m afraid that I have to write that off as a failed experiment; the failure being mine and not the authors. Claudio Salvucci and Paolo Belzoni have created a brilliantly witty piece of science fiction humor that I’ve enjoyed since they sent me the first chapter but a small quarterly magazine just isn’t the place for a long serialization. After two years it’s hard to keep track of what’s going on. Don’t be alarmed though, we’ll conclude the story on our website.
In the meantime, keep an eye out for us at your local conventions!