My Own Personal Best of Sci Fiction (Updated)

For those of you who didn’t regularly read Sci Fiction and are wondering what all the fuss is about, a list of my own personal favorite stories published there with links to them. Read now, as no one seems to know how long the site will be archived. I’m only linking to new stuff; pretty much everything from the classic science fiction series is worth your time. I know I’ll leave out some excellent stories, but here goes nothing. (Oh, and I didn’t read the site consistently from the very, very beginning, so that explains why I’m missing a bunch of excellent stories from the start–I suggest you go browse the archives on your own.)

We are losing something special. Ellen is one of the best editors working right now, period. As far as I’m concerned, the best literary magazine in the world just got shut down. It’s a pretty rare situation that an amazing editor with fantastic, broad taste is able to pay such that she can pick from the best stories being written in the field. It’s time for some billionaire who loves SF to step up and start a new magazine for her to edit.

(p.s. What stories am I missing, peeps? I haven’t read everything, obviously, with Lucius Shephard being a big blindspot.)

(Updated) Reactions elsewhere:

11 Responses to “My Own Personal Best of Sci Fiction (Updated)”

  1. Steph Burgis

    At the Mouth of the River of Bees, by Kij Johnson, was one of my favorite fantasy stories ever.

  2. Gwenda

    Oh, me too, Steph. I just love that story.

  3. Jason Erik Lundberg

    That’s an excellent list, Gwenda. I’d also add “The Wages of Syntax” by Ray Vukcevich and “Partial Eclipse” by Graham Joyce.

  4. David Moles

    I thought Shepard’s “A Walk in the Garden” was brilliant — if it was the only story ever to be written about the Iraq War, we’d still be doing okay. “Over Yonder” was somethin’ else, too.

  5. Rick Bowes

    Thanks for your postings Gwenda. We all knew from the start that this would not go on forever and could end at any moment. Over the years, with each change in ownership, each change in management, everyone would wonder if this was going to be it. Eventually it began to seem as if there was a kind of magic immunity which, of course, there wasn’t. But it was wonderful fun while it lasted.

  6. Abigail

    “The Wages of Syntax” is wonderful, and one of the funniest things I’ve ever read.

  7. scott

    Thanks for compiling this, Gwenda. (And for having a story of mine on there.) Here’s the address to send a polite but firm note to:
    Spread the word.

  8. Abigail

    On the (slightly) bright side, Ellen Datlow commented at Matt Cheney’s site and said that the archives would remain available for at least another year.

  9. Niall

    I love and adore Ian Macleod’s ‘New Light on the Drake Equation.’
    I summed up my opinion of the news in Graham’s post here.

  10. Paul Riddell

    My response, verbatim:
    “One of the greatest honors I ever received in my late writing career came when Ellen Datlow accepted two science articles of mine for the now-defunct online magazine Event Horizon in 1999: you’d understand why this was such an honor only if you saw me devour issues of OMNI when I was in high school. That’s why I hurt when supergee passed on the news that the SCI FI Channel is shutting down Ellen’s SCI FICTION site at the end of the year. Hurt, but sadly not surprised: after all, considering the focus of SCI FI president Bonnie Hammer, why spend money on a literary SF site that does its best to show the heights to which the genre can strive when otherwise cultivating a core audience that collectively wets itself over the possibility of a revival of Lexx?”

  11. Ellen Datlow

    Gwenda, Thanks for posting this.
    And thanks y’all for your reactions. I don’t really know how long the archives will remain up. I hope at least for a year. In the meantime, I’m busily printing out copies of all the originals. I had copies then eventually tossed them as they took up too much room at home.
    The prospect of a SCIFICTION print antho is looking better by the day. Keep watching the skies :-)

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