This is issue #2 of Salon Futura. In this issue we have:
- Cover: Totems: "Totems" by Ben Baldwin.
- Real Gone: Jonathan Clements traces the origins of Takeshi Koike’s Redline back into 1960s baseball, 1970s sci-fi racing and 1980s cheese…
- Short Fiction: October 2010: The wide variety of metaphor and symbolism available in speculative fiction allows authors to tackle a bewildering variety of topics. One of the most disturbing issues that authors can wrestle with is child abuse. This month I present three recent stories that broach the subject using entirely different sets of tropes: historical slipstream, near future SF, and secondary world fantasy.
- What Do We Mean By YA?: In any hierarchy each oppressed group is always looking for someone else to look down upon. Science fiction and fantasy occupy a pretty lowly place on the greasy totem pole of literary respectability. It is therefore perhaps not surprising that, when last year’s Hugo Award for Best Novel shortlisted three books marketed as “Young Adult”, a few eyebrows were raised around the blogosphere.
- The Salon: Writing LGBT Characters: This month on The Salon we welcome three writers who identify as members of the LGBT community. Nicola Griffith, Hal Duncan and Catherynne M. Valente talk to Cheryl Morgan about writing LGBT characters.
- Interview: Jay Lake: Cheryl Morgan talks to Jay Lake in a hotel room in Melbourne, Australia.
- Interview: Pat Cadigan: Cheryl Morgan talks to Pat Cadigan at Heathrow airport shortly after their return from Finncon.
- Pipeline: October 2010: This regular feature of Salon Futura highlights a number of significant book releases (and occasionally items in other media as well) in the month the issue is published. The selections will be made by Salon Futura contributors and staff, and occasionally by our podcast guests and interviewees.
- New In Store: October 2010: We are aiming to have copies of Dark Spires on sale at BristolCon. You can now pre-order the book at a special discount price of £6.99. If you are interested in a copy, please pre-order as we will not be printing many copies and pre-orders will be used as a guideline for how many we get done.
- Editorial: October 2010: September has been an interesting month. Reaction to Salon Futura at Worldcon was very positive, but then I went and won a Hugo as part of the Clarkesworld team and that rather distracted me. I did, however, bag an interview with Jay Lake, which you can find in this issue, and one with Seanan McGuire that we will have up next month.
Those of you with ebook readers that support the EPUB format can also download the issue to your mobile devices. Click here.
Please note that the audio and video content is not included in the downloadable version. It would be huge otherwise. We are working on an iPad/iPhone App that will allow you to stream our audio and video content to those mobile devices. In the meantime you can listen/watch online with traditional computers, or via the browser on your mobile device. You can also subscribe to our podcast via iTunes.
We hope that the issue will soon be available in the Kindle and iBooks stores, but this is dependent on us getting approval. We also need to test the Kindle version. The EPUB has been tested on an iPad, but as is the way with technology there may be glitches on other platforms. Please let us know if you find any.
Cheryl, many thanks for Salon Futura. The first couple of issues have been every bit as good as I’d expect from you.
But I will make a suggestion. While it’s splendid that you make a ebook version available, you really need more than ePub to cover the bases. ePub is fine for folks using the Sony Reader, Barnes and Noble nook, and an assortment of other things, but there are a huge number of people using an Amazon Kindle of one of the Kindle apps for PC, iPhone/iTouch/iPad, or Android based device. Amazon uses the Mobipocket ebook format, and the Kindle doesn’t *do* ePub.
I don’t know what your production process is to generate the ePub file. I used Calibre, a free and open source application by Kovid Goyal, to convert the ePub to Mobi format, so I could read it on my PDA which doesn’t do ePub but does have a Mobi viewer. The conversion was flawless. The links to online content were no-ops, since the PDA isn’t connected, but everything else was fine. On a device that handles Mobi files and *is* connected, like various Kindle models, those should work too.
You can get Calibre here: http://calibre-ebook.com/
It’s cross-platform, and available for Windows, Mac OS/X, and Linux. *Highly* recommended for anyone dealing with ebooks. It’s a Swiss army knife with a multitude of functions.
Thanks for the kind words about the content.
As for formats, I definitely intend to make the magazine available for the Kindle. However, I’m still getting to the bottom of exactly what I need to do to make it look good in that format. Automated converters are fine for enthusiasts like you who who know what they are doing, but they don’t catch all of the subtleties of the HTML, and crucially the converted file may fail the validation that Amazon requires before you can sell on the Kindle. So there will be a Kindle edition, hopefully as of next issue, but it will be done right.
I have Calibre. I do not recommend it unless you are prepared to put up with formatting errors.