The Best Science Fiction of the Year 2019 – Submission Guidelines

The Best Science Fiction of the Year Volume 5 will be published in mid-2020 and select from science fiction stories (short stories, novelettes, and novellas) originally published in English in 2019.

Translations are allowed as long as their first English language appearance is in 2019. To keep things simple, I will be using the publisher’s copyright, magazine’s cover date, or posting date (primarily for online fiction) to determine eligibility. Serialized works will be considered published at the time of the final installment.

Deadlines
Print materials must be received by November 1st. Digital materials must be received by November 15th. If your project is scheduled for publication after that date, please send galleys by the above deadlines so that I will have sufficient time to consider your work.

Rights
I will require non-exclusive World anthology rights in English in print, ebook, and audio formats for stories I select for this volume.

Delivery
I will accept science fiction stories, novelettes, and novellas for consideration in the following formats:

Print – mail to:
Neil Clarke
PO Box 172
Stirling, NJ 07980 

EPUB, MOBI, and .DOC – email to:
bestsciencefiction@clarkesworldmagazine.com

I strongly dislike reading PDFs, so please do not send me work in this format unless you have no other options.

Publishers: If sending a magazine/anthology/collection that also contains other fantasy/horror/other stories, please list the titles of the science fiction stories in your cover letter or email.

Authors: I will not be able to let you know whether or not your work has been submitted by your publisher. To avoid duplication, please check with your publisher before sending a story. If your work is self-published, please include the date and location (blog, website, Amazon, etc.) your work was originally published.

Stories published in the following magazines and anthologies do not need to be submitted. I already have (or will receive) them. UPDATED 2/18/2019

Magazines: Analog, Apex, Asimov’s, Better Worlds (The Verge), Clarkesworld, Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores, Diabolical Plots, Escape Pod, F&SF,  Fiction River, Future Tense Fiction (Slate), Galaxy’s Edge, GigaNotoSaurus,  Interzone, Lightspeed, Samovar, Shoreline of Infinity, Strange Horizons, Tor.com, Uncanny, and Wired.

Anthologies: Readymade Bodhisattva, The Gollancz Book of South Asian Science Fiction, A People’s Future of the United States

Sending a book/file/story is a one-way transaction. I will not be confirming receipt or returning materials.

Notes on publication dates:

  • Magazines: It is traditional for magazine cover date to be used to determine year of publication, however, if a story from a January issue is published on the website of that publication in December of the prior year, that will be considered the first publication date. This is considered an intentional publication by the publisher in the earlier year.
  • Anthologies: If the ebook or an e-Arc of an anthology is made available for purchase (and delivery, preorders don’t count) in the year prior to the official copyright year, the earlier year will be ignored when determining eligibility.  If the print edition happens to ship a few days earlier than the official publication date, causing it to drift into the prior year, the copyright date will be used. Unlike the digital publication dates, this is something that tends to be outside the publisher’s control. This is why they are treated differently.

Best Science Fiction of the Year Volume 4 Cover and Table of Contents

The Best Science Fiction of the Year – Volume 4

Night Shade Books – July 2, 2019
ISBN-10: 1949102084 (hardcover), 1597809888 (trade paperback)
ISBN-13: 978-1949102086 (hardcover), 978-1597809887 (trade paperback)

The fourth volume in a new year’s best series. This book will feature science fiction short stories/novelettes/novellas originally published in 2018.

Available for preorder at:

Table of Contents

  • “When We Were Starless” by Simone Heller (Clarkesworld Magazine, October 2018)
  • “Intervention” by Kelly Robson (Infinity’s End, edited by Jonathan Strahan)
  • “All the Time We’ve Left to Spend” by Alyssa Wong (Robots vs. Fairies, edited by Dominik Parisien and Navah Wolfe)
  • “Domestic Violence” by Madeline Ashby (Slate, March 26, 2018)
  • “Ten Landscapes of Nili Fossae” by Ian McDonald (2001: An Odyssey in Words, edited by Ian Whates and Tom Hunter)
  • “Prophet of the Roads” by Naomi Kritzer (Infinity’s End, edited by Jonathan Strahan)
  • “Traces of Us” by Vanessa Fogg (GigaNotoSaurus, March 2018)
  • “Theories of Flight” by Linda Nagata (Asimov’s Science Fiction, November/December 2018)
  • “Lab B-15” by Nick Wolven (Analog Science Fiction and Fact, March/April 2018)
  • “Requiem” by Vandana Singh (Ambiguity Machines and Other Stories, Small Beer Press)
  • “Sour Milk Girls” by Erin Roberts (Clarkesworld Magazine, January 2018)
  • “Mother Tongues” by S. Qiouyi Lu (Asimov’s Science Fiction, January/February 2018)
  • “Singles’ Day” by Samantha Murray (Interzone, September/October 2018)
  • “Nine Last Days on Planet Earth” by Daryl Gregory (Tor.com, September 19, 2018)
  • “The Buried Giant” by Lavie Tidhar (Robots vs. Fairies, edited by Dominik Parisien and Navah Wolfe)
  • “The Anchorite Wakes” by R.S.A. Garcia (Clarkesworld Magazine, August 2018)
  • “Entropy War” by Yoon Ha Lee (2001: An Odyssey in Words, edited by Ian Whates and Tom Hunter)
  • “An Equation of State” by Robert Reed (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, January/February 2018)
  • “Quantifying Trust” by John Chu (Mother of Invention, edited by Rivqa Rafael and Tansy Rayner Roberts)
  • “Hard Mary” by Sofia Samatar (Lightspeed Magazine, September 2018)
  • “Freezing Rain, a Chance of Falling” by L.X. Beckett (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, July/August 2018)
  • “Okay, Glory” by Elizabeth Bear (Twelve Tomorrows, edited by Wade Roush)
  • “Heavy Lifting” by A.T. Greenblatt (Uncanny Magazine, September/October 2018)
  • “Lions and Gazelles” by Hannu Rajaniemi (Slate, September 27, 2018)
  • “Different Seas” by Alastair Reynolds (Twelve Tomorrows, edited by Wade Roush)
  • “Among the Water Buffaloes, a Tiger’s Steps” by Aliette de Bodard (Mechanical Animals, edited by Selena Chambers and Jason Heller)
  • “Byzantine Empathy” by Ken Liu (Twelve Tomorrows, edited by Wade Roush)
  • “Meat and Salt and Sparks” by Rich Larson (Tor.com, June 6, 2018)
  • “Umbernight” by Carolyn Ives Gilman (Clarkesworld Magazine, February 2018)

Cover art: “Behemoth” by Mack Sztaba.

The Best Science Fiction of the Year – 2018 Submissions

The Best Science Fiction of the Year Volume 4 will be published by Skyhorse/Start under their Night Shade Books imprint in early 2019. I am presently considering all science fiction stories (short stories, novelettes, and novellas) originally published in English in 2018. (Translations are allowed as long as their first English language appearance is in 2018.) To keep things simple, I will be using the publisher’s copyright, magazine’s cover date, or posting date (primarily for online fiction) to determine eligibility. Serialized works will be considered published at the time of the final installment.

Deadlines
Print materials must be received by November 1st. Digital materials must be received by November 15th. If your project is scheduled for publication after that date, please send galleys by the above deadlines so that I will have sufficient time to consider your work.

Rights
I will require non-exclusive World anthology rights in English in print, ebook, and audio formats for stories I select for this volume.

Delivery
I will accept science fiction stories, novelettes, and novellas for consideration in the following formats:

Print – mail to:
Neil Clarke
PO Box 172
Stirling, NJ 07980 

EPUB, MOBI, and .DOC – email to:
bestsciencefiction@clarkesworldmagazine.com

I dislike reading PDFs, so please do not send me work in this format unless you don’t have any other options and have cleared it with me in advance.

Publishers: If sending a magazine/anthology/collection that also contains other fantasy/horror/other stories, please list the titles of the science fiction stories in a cover letter or email.

Authors: I will not be able to let you know whether or not your work has been submitted by your publisher. To avoid duplication, please check with your publisher before sending a story. If your work is self-published, please include the date and location (blog, website, Amazon, etc.) your work was originally published.

Stories published in the following magazines and anthologies do not need to be submitted. I already have them. UPDATED 8/3/2018

Magazines: Analog, Apex, Asimov’s, Clarkesworld, Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores, Diabolical Plots, F&SF,  Fiction River, Galaxy’s Edge, Interzone, Lightspeed, Longshot Island, Mithila Review, Mythic Delirium, Shoreline of Infinity, Strange Horizons, Tor.com, and Uncanny.

Anthologies: Beyond Prometheus, Glass and Gardens: Solarpunk Summers, Infinity’s End, It Starts With A Heist, Monstrosities, Solarpunk: Ecological and Fantastical Stories in a Sustainable World,  Shades Within Us, Spring Into SciFi, Twelve Tomorrows, Zion’s Fiction

Other: Future Tense Fiction Project

Sending a book/file/story is a one-way transaction. I will not be confirming receipt or returning materials.

Notes on publication dates:

  • Magazines: It is traditional for magazine cover date to be used to determine year of publication, however, if a story from a January issue is published on the website of that publication in December of the prior year, that will be considered the first publication date. This is considered an intentional publication by the publisher in the earlier year.
  • Anthologies: If the ebook or an e-Arc of an anthology is made available for purchase (and delivery, preorders don’t count) in the year prior to the official copyright year, the earlier year will be ignored when determining eligibility.  If the print edition happens to ship a few days earlier than the official publication date, causing it to drift into the prior year, the copyright date will be used. Unlike the digital publication dates, this is something that tends to be outside the publisher’s control. This is why they are treated differently.

Best Science Fiction of the Year Volume Three – recommended reading

Today is the official release date for The Best Science Fiction of the Year: Volume Three. Go buy a copy and/or encourage your library to buy one. 🙂

I’ve already listed the stories that are included in this volume, but every year I have a small pile of excellent stories that I have to cut from my final list. These become the Recommended Reading section at the back of the book. I’d like to share that list with you now.

2017 Recommended Reading

  • “Don’t Press Charges and I Won’t Sue” by Charlie Jane Anders, Global Dystopias, edited by Junot Díaz.
  • “Mines” by Eleanor Arnason, Infinity Wars, edited by Jonathan Strahan.
  • “Pan-Humanism: Hope and Pragmatics” by Jess Barber and Sara Saab, Clarkesworld, September 2017.“
  • Goner” by Gregory Norman Bossert, Asimov’s Science Fiction, March/April 2017.
  • “Strange Dogs” by James S. A. Corey, Orbit Books.
  • “The Moon Is Not a Battlefield” by Indrapramit Das, Infinity Wars, edited by Jonathan Strahan.
  • “The Dragon that Flew Out of the Sun” by Aliette de Bodard, Cosmic Powers, edited by John Joseph Adams.
  • “A Game of Three Generals” by Aliette de Bodard, Extrasolar, edited by Nick Gevers.
  • “Speechless Love” by Yilun Fan, Sunvault, edited by Phoebe Wagner and Bronte Christopher Wieland.
  • “Nexus” by Michael F. Flynn, Analog Science Fiction and Fact, March/April 2017.
  • “Rain Ship” by Chi Hui, Clarkesworld, February 2017.
  • “Canoe” by Nancy Kress, Extrasolar, edited by Nick Gevers.
  • “Soccer Fields and Frozen Lakes” by Greg Kurzawa, Lightspeed, March 2017.
  • “The Chameleon’s Gloves” by Yoon Ha Lee, Cosmic Powers, edited by John Joseph Adams.
  • “The Wisdom of the Group” by Ian R. MacLeod, Asimov’s Science Fiction, March/April 2017.
  • “What We Knew Then, Before the Sky Fell Down” by Seanan McGuire, Catalysts, Explorers & Secret Keepers: Women of Science Fiction, edited by Monica Louzon, Jake Weisfeld, Heather McHale, Barbara Jasny, and Rachel Frederick.
  • “Sidewalks” by Maureen McHugh, Omni, Winter 2017.
  • “The Influence Machine” by Sean McMullen, Interzone, March/April 2017.
  • “The Proving Ground” by Alex Nevala-Lee, Analog Science Fiction and Fact, January/February 2017.
  • “Books of the Risen Sea” by Suzanne Palmer, Asimov’s Science Fiction, September/October 2017.
  • “A Singular Event in the Fourth Dimension” by Andrea M. Pawley, Asimov’s Science Fiction, March/April 2017.
  • “Fandom for Robots” by Vina Jie-Min Prasad, Uncanny, September/October 2017.
  • “The Residue of Fire” by Robert Reed, Extrasolar, edited by Nick Gevers.
  • “Teratology” by C. Samuel Rees, Sunvault, edited by Phoebe Wagner and Bronte Christopher Wieland.
  • “Belladonna Nights” by Alastair Reynolds, The Weight of Words, edited by Dave McKean and William Schafer.
  • “Night Passage” by Alastair Reynolds, Infinite Stars, edited by Bryan Thomas Schmidt.
  • “Vanguard 2.0” by Carter Scholz, Visions, Ventures, Escape Velocities, edited by Ed Finn and Joey Eschrich.
  • “Eminence” by Karl Schroeder, Chasing Shadows, edited by Stephen W. Potts.
  • “Little /^^^\&-” by Eric Schwitzgebel, Clarkesworld, September 2017.
  • “Starlight Express” by Michael Swanwick, The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, September/October 2017.
  • “The Road to the Sea” by Lavie Tidhar, Sunvault, edited by Phoebe Wagner and Bronte Christopher Wieland.
  • “The Old Dispensation” by Lavie Tidhar, Tor.com, February 2017.
  • “All Systems Red” by Martha Wells, Tor.com, May 2017.

2018 Hugo Award Finalists

The 2018 Hugo Award Finalists have been announced!

So very honored to be a finalist for Best Editor Short Form again this year. This is my sixth nomination in this category–no wins–and every time has been as much a thrill as the others. Always and amazing group of colleagues competing in this category.

Also very happy to see “The Secret Life of Bots,” by Suzanne Palmer (Clarkesworld, September 2017) and “A Series of Steaks,” by Vina Jie-Min Prasad (Clarkesworld, January 2017) competing for the Hugo Award for Best Novelette and  Vina among the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer finalists. I included both of these stories in my latest Best Science Fiction of the Year anthology–and Vina as best new writer–so it’s nice to see others agreeing with me.

A big thank you to all the people who nominated this year. I appreciate your support and hope to see some of you at Worldcon this summer!