The Uncanny Valley

Welcome to the first Uncanny Magazine issue of 2021.

We write this as we start the first holiday season in our new home. Caitlin is currently binging The Vampire Diaries, as Hugo the Cat naps near her on his blanket, and Lynne consumes all of the Christmas romances her eReader can provide. We made it through a year without having to return to a hospital for anything other than Caitlin’s numerous checkups. We know how fortunate and lucky we are.

For everyone, 2020 was a terrible year, as we’ve covered in every 2020 editorial. But hope is sprouting again in 2021! In a few weeks, President Biden and Vice President Harris will be running the United States! Vaccines are already rolling out throughout the world to battle the pandemic which killed far too many. There is a tremendous amount of work ahead of us, but things are improving! There remains so much gorgeousness in our world. So much kindness. Love and art and beauty endure even through the scariest and most heartbreaking of times.

Keep on fighting, Space Unicorns. You are worth it. This world is worth it.

It’s the time of year when people post their year-in-reviews to remind voters for the different SF/F awards what’s out there that they might have missed and which categories those stories are eligible in (especially for the Hugo Awards and Nebula Awards). 2020 was the sixth full year of Uncanny Magazine (Issues 32 through 37). We are extremely proud of the year we had.

This year, Uncanny Magazine is still eligible for the Best Semiprozine Hugo Award. Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas are also still eligible for the Best Editor (Short Form) Hugo Award for editing issues 32-37. (Note: If you are nominating the Thomases in this category, please continue to nominate them together. They are a co-editing team.)

If you are a SFWA member nominating for the Nebula Awards, you can find eBook copies of all of the 2020 issues in the SFWA Forums.

Please also note that essays are eligible for the Best Related Work Hugo Award, and poetry is eligible for the Rhysling Award. As Uncanny is a semiprozine, all of the essays and original art also contribute towards the creators’ Best Fan Writer and Best Fan Artist Hugo Award eligibility.

And now the contents of Uncanny Magazine Issue 38! The spectacular cover is Stars and Blessings by Nilah Magruder. Our new fiction includes Sam J. Miller’s disturbing tale of alternate realties “Tyrannosaurus Hex,” Miyuki Jane Pinckard’s story of family and loss “A House Full of Voices Is Never Empty,” Nicole Kornher-Stace’s exploration of friendship and survival “Pathfinding!”, Paul Cornell’s unraveling of identity “Distribution,” Christopher Caldwell’s story of love, crimes, and magic “Femme and Sundance,” and Marissa Lingen’s haunting tale of childhood and secrets “Beyond the Doll Forest.” Our reprint is “In That Place She Grows a Garden” by Del Sandeen, originally published in FIYAH Issue #10.

Our provocative and compelling essays this month include “Weird Plagues: How Fear of Disease Mutated into a Subgenre” by John Wiswell, “Milk Teeth” By Octavia Cade, “Trash Fantasias, or Why Mass Effect 3’s Ending Was Bad Actually” by Katherine Cross, and “Hayao Miyazaki’s Lost Magic of Parenthood” by Aidan Moher. This month also includes a new editorial column by Nonfiction Editor Elsa Sjunneson called “Imagining Futures: Where Our Works Go from Here.” Our gorgeous and evocative poetry includes “Medusa Gets a Haircut” by Theodora Goss, “Kalevala, an untelling” by Lizy Simonen, “bargain | bin” by Ewen Ma, “Fish Out of Water” by Neil Gaiman, and “What the Time Travellers Stole” by L.X. Beckett. Finally, Caroline M. Yoachim interviews Miyuki Jane Pinckard and Paul Cornell about their stories.

The Uncanny Magazine Podcast 38A features “Tyrannosaurus Hex” by Sam J. Miller, as read by Joy Piedmont, “Medusa Gets a Haircut” by Theodora Goss, as read by Erika Ensign, and Lynne M. Thomas interviewing Sam J. Miller. The Uncanny Magazine Podcast 38B features “Femme and Sundance” by Christopher Caldwell, as read by Matt Peters, “What the Time Travellers Stole” by L.X. Beckett, as read by Joy Piedmont, and Lynne M. Thomas interviewing Christopher Caldwell.

As always, we are deeply grateful for your support of Uncanny Magazine. Shine on, Space Unicorns!

Lynne M. Thomas & Michael Damian Thomas

Lynne and Michael are the Publishers/Editors-in-Chief for the four-time Hugo and Parsec Award-winning Uncanny Magazine.

Nine-time Hugo Award winner Lynne M. Thomas was the Editor-in-Chief of Apex Magazine (2011-2013). She co-edited the Hugo Award-winning Chicks Dig Time Lords (with Tara O’Shea) as well as Whedonistas (with Deborah Stanish) and Chicks Dig Comics (with Sigrid Ellis).

Along with being a six-time Hugo Award-winner, Michael Damian Thomas was the former Managing Editor of Apex Magazine (2012-2013), co-edited the Hugo-finalist Queers Dig Time Lords (with Sigrid Ellis), and co-edited Glitter & Mayhem (with John Klima and Lynne M. Thomas).

Together, they solve mysteries.

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