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De Kalb, IL Periodicals
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A Professional Magazine of Science Fiction and Fantasy Literature.

De Kalb, IL Periodicals
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About this project

Uncanny Logo
Uncanny Logo

Uncanny: A Magazine of Science Fiction & Fantasy

Three-time Hugo Award-winner Lynne M. Thomas (Apex Magazine, Chicks Dig Time Lords, Glitter & Mayhem) and three-time Hugo Award nominee Michael Damian Thomas (Apex Magazine, Queers Dig Time Lords) are launching year one of a new professional online SF/F magazine: Uncanny: A Magazine of Science Fiction & Fantasy

Each issue will contain new and classic speculative fiction, fiction podcasts, poetry, essays, art, and interviews.

Our Philosophy:

We're geeks who have spent the past several years creating and sharing work that gets us excited. 

Whether it's sharing true, personal stories of how the community that loves Doctor Who changes lives in Chicks Dig Time Lords and Queers Dig Time Lordspublishing haunting, lyrical, and devastating stories in Apex Magazine, or throwing a massive, Kickstarter-funded science fictional party through Glitter & Mayhem's stories of the dark side of night life and roller derby (what's more awesome than partying aliens and roller derby?), we've done our best to bring you stories and images that stay with you, because they feel like they were made for you. 

We think that the best Science Fiction and Fantasy literature combines astonishing ideas, strong characterization, gorgeous writing, and distinctive points of view from around the world.

We love the stories that we can't stop thinking and talking about, because of how they made us feel.  We're taking our experiences and using them to create a new online magazine.

We're calling it Uncanny, because we want to produce a sensational magazine that feels like you've been here before, in the best way possible. 

These kinds of stories feel as rare as unicorns. Getting to share them with our readers as editors is awesome like a space unicorn (hence our mascot). 

Space unicorns for everyone!

Here's a preview of some of our cover art, in this case, by Tran Nguyen:

A Sentimental Swallow by Tran Nguyen
A Sentimental Swallow by Tran Nguyen

 (This is available as postcards and prints for some backers).

Year One Contributors: (So far)...

For year one, we've solicited original short fiction, poetry, and nonfiction from Hugo, Nebula, and World Fantasy Award winning and nominated authors including: 

L-R: (row 1) Amal El-Mohtar (photo credit: Stephanie J. Boland), Sofia Samatar (photo credit: Adauto Araujo), Charlie Jane Anders, Liz Argall, Rachel Swirsky (photo credit: Folly Blaine); (row 2) Maria Dahvana Headley, Mary Robinette Kowal (photo credit: Rod Searcey), Neil Gaiman (photo credit: Kimberly Butler), Scott Lynch; (row 3) Catherynne M. Valente, Paul Cornell, Ken Liu, Kat Howard (photo credit: Tia Mansouri), Hao Jingfang, E. Lily Yu.

We plan to showcase original poetry by

... and essays by

Uncanny will also feature cover art by

More preview art, this time by Julie Dillon! 

Fortune's Favored, by Julie Dillon
Fortune's Favored, by Julie Dillon

 (This is available as postcards and prints for some backers). 

There will also be slots for unsolicited submissions. We're deeply committed to finding and showcasing new voices in our genre from around the world.

How You Can Get Uncanny:

Uncanny issues will be published as eBooks (MOBI, PDF, EPUB) bimonthly on the first Tuesday of that month through all of the major online eBook stores. Each issue will contain 4-6 new short stories, 2 reprinted stories, 2 poems, 2 nonfiction essays, and 2 interviews, at minimum. We are currently working on providing additional exclusive content just for subscribers. 

Subscribers and those purchasing single issues get each issue (ex: Nov/Dec 2014 is our first planned issue) in its entirety up front, no waiting. 

Those reading online for free will have to wait a week for the first half of the issue, and a month for the second half, to appear on the second Tuesday of each month (of November and December, respectively in our example) at http://uncannymag.com/

We will also be producing a monthly fiction podcast. 

How We Will Use the Funding:

We are fundraising to cover the start up costs for launching a professional online magazine. We intend to pay our writers $ .08 per word for original fiction, our poets $30 per poem, and our essayists $50 per essay, and our artists $60 per reprinted artwork. In addition to paying our contributors, our budget includes hiring Clockpunk Studios to set up, design and host a robust website; podcast production and hosting costs; and covering backer rewards and Kickstarter fees. 

Stretch Goals:

  • At $27,000, we will commission original cover art from Tran Nguyen
  • At $28,000, we will commission original cover art from Galen Dara
  • At $30,000, we will commission 2 additional essays per issue
  • At $33,000, we will be able to add one additional original story per issue
  • At $36,000, we will be able to add two additional original stories per issue

The Uncanny Team:

Lynne M. Thomas, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief 

Three-time Hugo Award winner Lynne M. Thomas is (in her day job) the Curator of Rare Books and Special Collections at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, IL. She is perhaps best known as the co-editor of the Hugo Award-winning Chicks Dig Time Lords (2010) with Tara O’Shea, Whedonistas (2011) with Deborah Stanish, and the Hugo Award-nominated Chicks Dig Comics (2012) with Sigrid Ellis , all published by Mad Norwegian Press. Lynne is the former Editor-in-Chief (2011-2013) of the Hugo Award-nominated (2011, 2012, 2013) Apex Magazine. She moderates the Hugo Award-winning SF Squeecast, a monthly podcast (with Elizabeth Bear, Paul Cornell, Seanan McGuire, Michael Damian Thomas and Catherynne M. Valente) in which a group of SF/F professionals get excited about stuff they like, and contributes to the Verity! Podcast (with Erika Ensign, L.M. Myles, Katrina Griffiths, Tansy Rayner Roberts and Deborah Stanish), where a bunch of smart women talk about Doctor Who

Michael Damian Thomas, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief

Along with being a two-time Hugo Award nominee as the former Managing Editor of Apex Magazine (2012-2013), Michael Damian Thomas co-edited the Hugo-nominated Queers Dig Time Lords (Mad Norwegian Press, 2013) with Sigrid Ellis and Glitter & Mayhem (Apex Publications, 2013), with John Klima and Lynne M. Thomas. He also has worked as an Associate Editor on numerous books at Mad Norwegian Press, including the Hugo Award-winning Chicks Dig Time Lords (edited by Lynne M. Thomas and Tara O’Shea, 2010) and Hugo Award-nominated Chicks Dig Comics (edited by Lynne M. Thomas and Sigrid Ellis, 2012). Michael is also a contributor to the SF Squeecast podcast.

Michi Trota, Managing Editor

Michi Trota is a Chicago-based freelance writer/editor and firespinning geek fiend who was raised on a steady diet of 80s cartoons, anime, and classic sci-fi/fantasy literature and soundtracks. Michi was recently a featured essayist in Invisible: An Anthology of Representation in SF/F (edited by Jim C. Hines). In her professional life, she is a managing editor with fifteen years of experience in the publishing industry. She’s a member of the Board of Organizers for The Chicago Nerd Social Club and is a core organizer for the Chicago Full Moon Jams, a monthly performance showcase of Great Lakes area firespinners. She also often spins fire and flowtoys in cosplay to classic nerdy tunes with the Raks Geek showcase. Discussions about geek culture, feminism and intersectionality are guaranteed to get Michi talking for hours. 

 Erika Ensign, Podcast Producer 

Erika is podcast-happy. In addition to producing Uncanny’s monthly podcast, she’s technical producer and cohost of the Hugo-nominated Doctor Who podcast Verity! She co-hosts and shares moderation duties on The Audio Guide to Babylon 5. And she produces a short fiction podcast for the Hugo Award-nominated Apex Magazine. As if that’s not enough, she’s also a semi-regular panelist on The Incomparable and frequently guests on a host of Doctor Who (and other) podcasts. You can find her online tweeting about all kinds of things as @HollyGoDarkly and blogging about Doctor Who, knitting, and other random geeky (and non-geeky) pursuits. Her degree in communications, which concentrated on editing and production, is finally serving her in the real world. Podcasts are in the real world, right? Right?

Steven Schapansky, Podcast Producer

Steven Schapansky
Steven Schapansky

Steven is one of the co-hosts and producers of the long running and popular Doctor Who podcast Radio Free Skaro. He also hosts and produces another podcast, Doctor Who: The Memory Cheats. He’s also Canadian, and thus he apologizes for talking so much about himself right now. 

Deborah Stanish, Interviewer

Deborah Stanish is the co-editor of the Hugo nominated Chicks Unravel Time: Women Journey Through Every Season of Doctor Who and Whedonistas: A Celebration of the Worlds of Joss Whedon by the Women Who Love Them. She’s had essays published in Chicks Dig Time Lords, Time, Unincorporated Volumes II and III, Outside In: 160 New Perspectives on 160 Classic Doctor Who Stories by 160 Writers, Famous Monsters of Filmland, Apex Magazine and The Liverpool University Journal of Science Fiction, Film and Television. Deborah is also the moderator of the Hugo nominated  Verity! Podcast where six women, from around the globe, debate and discuss Doctor Who.

Risks and challenges

The risk for any magazine is that it won't come out on the promised deadlines. We were never late in our entire two year run at Apex Magazine, and we have no intention of beginning now.

The authors listed have all agreed to submit to Year One of Uncanny, but we cannot guarantee publication. Many things can happen during the writing process, which might prevent authors from completing works. However, we feel strongly that this group of writers will create excellent stories, poetry, and essays for Year One of Uncanny.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

FAQ

  • We are currently budgeted for 17000 words of new fiction at $.08 a word per bimonthly issue of Uncanny, 6 issues a year. Since every story needs to be told at its own length, some stories may be longer than others. Calling it 4-6 stories gives us the wiggle room we need to match stories up based on length, theme, and just plain whim. :-)

    Last updated:
  • ETA: YUP! Adding $10 to your backer level will now get you a Space Unicorns Ranger Corps patch featuring our Uncanny Space Unicorn! (Think merit badge). Please let us know you'd like the patch when you answer the survey.

    ...we just don't know yet. We want to focus on funding the magazine properly first, and then we'll figure that part out. We've asked our Kickstarter liaison person about how to set these up, just in case. Stay tuned!

    Last updated:

Rewards

  • You selected
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    COOL IDEA! You get our deep thanks, an eBook copy (MOBI, PDF, EPUB) of our first issue and your name listed in issue 1.

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    GIVE IT A GO. You get an eBook copy (MOBI, PDF, EPUB) of issues 1 and 2, with your name listed in issue 1, and our deep thanks!

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    SUBSCRIBER: Electronic subscription to Uncanny Year One in the eBook format of your choice (MOBI, PDF, EPUB); your name listed in issue 1; and our deep thanks.

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    SUSTAINER: Exclusive access to A Very Special Verity! Extra! Podcast episode recorded just for our backers. Verity! is a Hugo-nominated podcast in which six smart women discuss Doctor Who (http://veritypodcast.com). Postcard of cover art from Galen Dara, Julie Dillon, or Tran Nguyen (you'll get to select later). Uncanny logo sticker. Electronic subscription to Uncanny Year One in the format of your choice (MOBI, PDF, EPUB); your name listed in issue 1; our deep thanks.

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    STRANGER THAN EVER: Autographed hardcover copy of A Stranger in Olondria by Sofia Samatar. Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level.

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    2 backers Limited (2 left of 4)

    PICK A BRAIN: Sofia Samatar, Kat Howard, Diana Pho, or Sarah Kuhn will blog about a topic of your choice; Sofia, Kat and Sarah are willing to review a movie/television show/book of your choice. (We'll contact you to select your blogger and topic. First come, first choice.) Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level.

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    SHINIES 1 pair beaded earrings handmade by Rachel Swirsky. Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level.

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    PICK A BRAIN LIVE Google Hangout or Skype with Lynne or Michael, and Rachel Swirsky or Sarah Kuhn or Diana Pho or Liz Argall or Mary Robinette Kowal (We'll contact you to select your author. First come, first choice.) Discuss whatever you like with editors and writers! Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level.

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    POETRY ON THE BRAIN Complete PDF collection of Bryan Thao Worra’s verse volumes from 2007-2013. Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level.

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    KIND THINGS. A packet of mini-comics and brand new temporary tattoos and shrinky dinks from Liz Argall's Things Without Arms and Without Legs webcomic (http://thingswithout.com/). Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level.

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    PICK A BRAIN II : Amal El-Mohtar will blog about a topic of your choice; Amal is willing to review a movie/television show/book of your choice. (First come, first choice.) Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level.

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    AUTOGRAPH HUNTERS’ DREAM. Normandyes postcard autographed by 8 different writers currently there on a French retreat: Elizabeth Bear, Greer Gilman, Ellen Klages, David D. Levine, Scott Lynch, Pat Murphy, Madeline Robins, and Rachel Swirsky. Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level.

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    SWIRSKY STORY FOR YOU: Personalized, autographed unpublished short story manuscript from Nebula Award-winning author Rachel Swirsky. Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level.

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    ART CRAWL. Signed prints of cover art from Galen Dara and Julie Dillon. Prints of cover art by Tran Nguyen. Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level.

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    EVEN KINDER THINGS. A letter from the Things (or any of the characters in Things Without Arms and Without Legs) to you or someone you choose, plus a packet of mini-comics and brand new temporary tattoos and shrinky dinks from Liz Argall's Things Without Arms and Without Legs webcomic (http://thingswithout.com/). Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level.

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    MANUSCRIPT CRITIQUES by Kat Howard (up to 5000 words) or Maria Dahvana Headley (short story up to 7500 words) or Diana Pho (first 3 chapters of a novel) or Lynne M. Thomas (up to 7500 words, 2 critiques available). Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level. (We'll contact you to select your critiquer. First come, first choice.)

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    DINNER WITH AN AUTHOR AND EDITOR (You need to get to the convention; we will buy you dinner.) Choose from Paul Cornell, Kameron Hurley, Mari Ness, Diana Pho, Liz Argall, or Ken Liu, with Lynne and Michael Thomas. Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level. (We'll contact you to select your dinner partner later, based on scheduling and which pro will be at a given convention. First come, first choice.)

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    DANCE VERITY DANCE. Verity! is a Hugo-nominated podcast in which six smart women discuss Doctor Who (http://veritypodcast.com). The Verity! podcast will record an episode JUST FOR BACKERS (minimum 20 minutes per topic, but we’re often chatty!). Backers at this level get to choose our topics, from the silly to the sublime (need not be Doctor Who). This episode will not be publicly released through the Verity! website as an Extra for at least six months, and we may not release it at all outside of this Kickstarter. Backers at the $50 and higher level will receive exclusive access to this episode. (We'll contact you to select your topic later. First come, first choice.) Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level, and larger prints of art from Julie Dillon, Tran Nguyen, and Galen Dara.

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    DINNER WITH AN AUTHOR AND EDITOR (You need to get to the convention; we will buy you dinner.) Mary Robinette Kowal, with Lynne and Michael Thomas. Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level. (We'll contact you to select your dinner partner later, based on scheduling and which pro will be at a given convention. First come, first choice.)

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    YOU BECOME THE STORY. Mary Robinette Kowal will tuckerize you in her story for Uncanny. Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level.

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    SCARY HAM FUNERAL KIT. As heard at this year’s Nebula Awards: the story of the scary ham: http://www.tor.com/blogs/2014/05/the-scary-ham. Ellen Klages will put together a unique package including an autographed print of the Scary Ham Story and a canned ham. (Please follow local laws when dealing with your ham). Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level, and larger prints of art from Julie Dillon and Galen Dara. US backers only; we won’t ship ham internationally, alas.

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    SHOP WITH Maria Dahvana Headley. Take a vintage shopping trip in NYC with Maria styling you (you are responsible for purchasing stuff if you like it), or Maria will create a virtual redecoration of your home in her signature cabinet of curiousities style - as in, you tell her your favorite things, and she make a virtual fantastical room for you. Travel to NYC and lodgings NOT INCLUDED. If you follow Maria, you know this is going to be an epic shopping experience. Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level and larger prints of art from Julie Dillon, Tran Nguyen, and Galen Dara.

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    WORKSHOP WITH MARY ROBINETTE KOWAL. Guaranteed slot in Mary's intensive short story online workshop. These classes usually sell out in less than a minute. Seriously. Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level. Preview link to a sample workshop: http://www.eventbrite.com/e/short-story-intensive-august-2014-tickets-11283265551

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    HAIKU EARRING PARTY IN A BOX Jeweler Elise Matthesen will provide everything you need to throw a Haiku Earring Party. Includes a dozen pairs of earrings (all sterling silver) with names, pens and haiku cards, and instructions for conducting the party. Also includes everything from the SUSTAINER level.

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    NAME OUR SPACE UNICORN Our awesome unicorn was designed by Katy Shuttleworth, but it needs a name! Also includes dinner with the Uncanny editors (and any willing authors who can join us) at a convention. Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level, and larger prints of art from Julie Dillon, Tran Nguyen, and Galen Dara.

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    POCONOS RETREAT Support at this level gets you a writer/editor retreat at a vacation home in the Poconos (big screen TV, wifi, & cable included), with Lynne M. Thomas, Deborah Stanish, and possibly additional area writers (Fran Wilde, Sarah Pinsker, A.C. Wise, Michael R. Underwood) based on availability. You are responsible for getting to Philadelphia, but we will cover transportation to the vacation cottage, housing, and food for the weekend. Includes everything from the SUSTAINER level, and larger prints of art by Julie Dillon, Tran Nguyen, and Galen Dara.

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Funding period

- (30 days)