2018 Readercon Schedule

I’ll be attending Readercon in Quincy, MA this weekend. Light schedule this time:

Friday 6:00PM – Scouting Global Speculative Stories
Liz Gorinsky (M), Neil Clarke, Mimi Mondal, Anatoly Belilovsky, Alex Shvartsman, Francesco Verso

Magazine and book editors will discuss how they scout and promote authors from outside the U.S. and U.K., sharing their expertise and best practices. How can writers and editors make the best use of resources such as Lavie Tidhar’s WorldSF Blog and Rachel Cordasco’s SF in Translation site? What would make it easier to find, publish, and publicize world speculative fiction?

Sunday 10AM – Kaffeeklatsch

I’ll also be in the Dealer’s Room at the Clarkesworld table during the open hours I’m not otherwise scheduled for.

The second volume for Clarkesworld Year Nine

NOW AVAILABLE!

Clarkesworld: Year Nine, Volume Two

Wyrm Publishing, July 1, 2018
ISBN: 978-1-64236-002-8 (trade paperback)
ISBN: 978-1-64236-001-1 (ebook)

Since 2006, Clarkesworld Magazine has been entertaining science fiction and fantasy fans with their brand of unique science fiction and fantasy stories. Collected here are all of the stories this Hugo Award-winning magazine published during the second half of their ninth year. Includes stories by Emily Devenport, Matthew Kressel, Yoon Ha Lee, Sam J. Miller, Robert Reed, Martin L. Shoemaker, Han Song, and many more!

CONTENTS

Introduction by Neil Clarke
The Empress in Her Glory by Robert Reed
Postcards From Monster Island by Emily Devenport
Loving Grace by Erica L. Satifka
The Petals Abide by Benjanun Sriduangkaew
Mrs. Griffin Prepares to Commit Suicide Tonight by A Que
For the Love of Sylvia City by Andrea M. Pawley
Somewhere I Have Never Traveled (Third Sound Remix) by E. Catherine Tobler
Asymptotic by Andy Dudak
Snakes by Yoon Ha Lee
It Was Educational by J.B. Park
This Wanderer, in the Dark of the Year by Kris Millering
Forestspirit, Forestspirit by Bogi Takács
The Hunger Tower by Pan Haitian
The Algebra of Events by Elizabeth Bourne
Android Whores Can’t Cry by Natalia Theodoridou
Let Baser Things Devise by Berrien C. Henderson
Security Check by Han Song
Ossuary by Ian Muneshwar
The Servant by Emily Devenport
An Evolutionary Myth by Bo-young Kim
Further North by Kay Chronister
Cremulator by Robert Reed
The Occidental Bride by Benjanun Sriduangkaew
Preserve Her Memory by Bao Shu
The Garden Beyond Her Infinite Skies by Matthew Kressel
When Your Child Strays From God by Sam J. Miller
Today I Am Paul by Martin L. Shoemaker
About the Authors
Clarkesworld Census
About Clarkesworld

Order the Trade Paperback From:

Amazon
Wyrm Publishing

Order the Ebook Edition From:

Amazon.com (Kindle/Mobi)
Apple (epub)
B&N (epub)
Kobo (epub)
Wyrm Publishing (epub/Mobi)

Copies will also be available at the Clarkesworld table at Readercon this month.

The Final Frontier gets a starred review


Publishers Weekly has published a starred review for my upcoming reprint anthology, The Final Frontier. (July 10, Night Shade Books)

“Clarkesworld editor Clarke’s stellar reprint anthology explores the expansive variety of space exploration stories, in shades from brutal to elegantly poetic… Clarke has brought together outstanding works in which extreme environments bring out the best and worst of human nature.”

Read the full review here: publishersweekly.com/9781597809399

Preorder trade paperback from:

or preorder the ebook from:

Why Clarkesworld is no longer available on Magzter

For some time now, I have been trying to track down the source of pirated copies of Clarkesworld that would appear moments after subscriptions were filled. After some time, I was able to narrow the problem down to issues distributed through Magzter. On one occasion, I found a pirated copy after only two of their customers had downloaded that month’s issue. I emailed support and asked for assistance in identifying the source (providing the details I had discovered–times, customer numbers) and was ignored. (They don’t share subscriber information with publishers.) I emailed then again on two separate occasions–one directly to someone who had emailed me first–, but neither of those were responded to either.

Finally, at the end of May, I gave up on them. The best way to solve the problem was to cut them off. I logged into my account and discovered that there were no options to remove a publication or back issues from their site. I then emailed them the following:

Hi,
After failing to receive responses to multiple complaints about your platform being the source of pirated copies of our magazine, we have decided to terminate our relationship with Magzter and remove our publication from your site.
It appears as though you have made it difficult to do this, so please provide instructions by which we can do so, or remove them yourself and inform us when the process has been completed.
Thank you,
-Neil

THAT got their attention. Within three hours I had the following reply (which was also copied to several other people in the company):

Dear Neil,
Could you send us the URL.
We have all of the piracy issues fixed already and we don’t find any new magazines getting pirated.

Aside from the signature, that’s all there was to the reply.

As an aside, let me direct your attention to their publisher terms and conditions (www.magzter.com/publisher/terms), specifically this part of section 3.4.2:

Provided that in the event Magzter learns of any such piracy, Magzter shall inform the Publisher thereof and provide the Publisher with details thereof (to the extent such details are known to and available to Magzter).

The above email basically admits that they knew there were problems, were silently dealing with them in the background, and going by all  the emails I’ve received from them over the years, never telling publishers about it, despite the promise to do so.

My response:

You seem to think I was merely threatening to leave Magzter over this. You’ve already missed the opportunity to fix it. Please just answer my question and tell me how to withdraw our magazine and back issues from your site. That will solve my problem.

and theirs…

Dear Neil,
Sure, I shall assist on the removal process.
But I would request you to share us the link since our firewalls have been strengthened and there is no such issue as of now.
Since you have been our prestigious client we dont want to miss you.

This is interesting because it more or less says that their own poor security was to blame for at least some of the piracy. I can say it didn’t solve the problem as I had just finished filing the latest batch of DMCA complaints for copies I know came from their site.

We went back and forth with them one more time asking for links/files but not doing what I had asked them to. Frustrated, I told them they were only making the situation worse by dragging it out. They finally relented and said they’d end subscriptions. I had to remind them again that I had asked them to terminate all back issue sales as well. (It wasn’t part of the instructions to another employee that I was copied on.)

Twelve days later the subscriptions and back issues were still available for sale, so they got another email. They replied “This will be removed very soon and surely will update you on Monday EOD.”

Late Tuesday, it is still available for sale and there has been no update. I email them again and get an excuse that they had been on emergency leave. That explains the lack of email–at best, assuming I believe anything they say now–but not the lack of action by the other employees who had been told to carry out the action.

They finally remove the magazine the next day.

Three days later, I do another check of their site and find articles from some of our issues are available on their site for free. Another email. Another apology. Finally, we are free.

I know we’ll never eliminate piracy, but it was rampant while we were working with them. The number of DMCA complaints I’ve had to make this month–the first month away from them–is down 90%. That says something.

If you were one of the few people subscribing to Clarkesworld on Magzter, my apologies, but this had to be done. There are many other places you can subscribe that don’t cause problems for their publishers and I hope you’ll consider subscribing through one of them instead.

If you’re a publisher, I’m posting this in part for you too. Obviously they’ve had security problems and haven’t been communicating. You deserve to know.

2018 Balticon Schedule

I’m a Special Guest at Balticon this year!

My schedule is:

Friday, May 25

4pm – Freelancing in the Publishing Industry
Christina M. Frey, Neil Clarke, John Edward Lawson
How can one survive on their own in the wild, ever-changing world of genre publishing? Hear some stories and advice from people who have!

Saturday, May 26

11am – Kaffeeklatsch: Neil Clarke

12pm –  Dangerous Voices Variety Hour

2pm – Recognizing Predatory Business Practices
D.H. Aire (moderator), James R. Stratton, Neil Clarke, Rosemary Claire Smith, Lawrence Watt-Evans
How to look for signs that you might not be dealing with a legitimate company – including common tactics such as pay-to-play, signing over derivative works, and others.

3pm – Making a Good Book Cover
J. R. Blackwell, Starla Huchton, Neil Clarke, Jabari Weathers
What makes a cover eye-catching? How might different audiences interpret the same imagery? Our panelists will go through the design process.

Sunday, May 27

12pm – Are Advances in Technology Making Spec Fiction Harder To Pull Off?
Carl Cipra (moderator), Larry Niven, Sarah Pinsker, Neil Clarke, Nicky Drayden, Catherine Asaro
Is it possible for writers to keep up with the rapid pace of technological development? Can we we “future-proof” the challenges our characters face so there won’t be an “app for that” by the time the book comes out?

1pm – Autographs: Neil Clarke and Ted Weber

3pm – Ask Me Anything: Editors & Publishers
Walt Boyes (moderator), Scott H. Andrews, Neil Clarke, Ian Randal Strock, Jeff Young
A panel of professional editors and publishers answer questions from the audience.

4pm – Kickstarter, Patreon, and Crowdfunding Your Novel
Tee Morris, Philippa Ballantine, Michael R. Underwood, Neil Clarke, Lawrence Watt-Evans
In the traditional model, an author is paid per book sold. How has crowdfunding changed the way writers work and publish?

9pm – Tales From the Slush Pile
Joshua Bilmes, Neil Clarke, John Edward Lawson
Editors share tales of some of the gems they’ve received, and give advice on how to avoid becoming fodder for future panels like this.

Monday, May 28

11am – Pitches We’re Sick Of (and Ones We Want to See)
Sarah Avery (moderator), Joshua Bilmes, Neil Clarke
Agents and editors discuss trends in submissions.

12pm – Writing for Themed Anthologies
Jean Marie Ward, Alex Shvartsman, T. Eric Bakutis, Neil Clarke
Anthologies offer an excellent opportunity for writers to get their work out to new readers. Writers and editors discuss where to look for submission opportunities, how to write to a theme, and tips on catching an editor’s eye (for the right reasons).