New Treasures: Clarkesworld Year Nine, Volumes One & Two, edited by Neil Clarke and Sean Wallace
It’s hard to believe Clarkesworld magazine launched over a decade ago (in October 2006, believe it or not). I remember when Neil Clarke announced it, as sort of a side project/marketing scheme for his online Clarkesworld bookstore. I was already a regular customer — Clarkesworld was far and away the best source for small press magazines, and they sold a lot of the print edition of Black Gate — and I was curious to see what he could do with it.
The rest, as they say, is history. The bookstore shut down a few years later, but the magazine exploded. Last time I counted it had a World Fantasy Award, three Hugo Awards, a British Fantasy Award, and in 2013 it received more Hugo nominations for short fiction than all the leading print magazines combined. Clarkesworld keeps getting bigger and more ambitious every year… although, in one way at least, things haven’t changed much since 2006: I’m still intensely curious to see where Neil and Sean will take it next.
I don’t have time to read every issue, so I greatly appreciate their tradition of producing an annual print volume every year collecting a complete year of fiction under a single cover. Last year’s Year Eight was a huge 448 pages and, given how much the magazine has grown in the past year, I was looking forward to seeing just how big Year Nine would be. When I finally set eyes on it (at the Clarkesworld booth at the World Fantasy convention) I wasn’t disappointed. For the first time it’s been broken into two books, both over 300 pages.
[Click the images for Clarkesworld-sized versions.]
Back covers to Year Nine, Volumes One & Two. Art by Lake Hurwitz and Liu Junwei
All told, Clarkesworld: Year Nine gathers 53 stories from many of the very best writers in the industry. Here’s the book blurb for Volume One.
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 first half of their ninth year. Includes stories by Aliette de Bodard, Naomi Kritzer, Ken Liu, Robert Reed, Kristine Kathryn Rusch, Catherynne M. Valente, Kij Johnson, Jay Lake, Matthew Kressel, Rich Larson, and many more!
Clarkesworld: Year Nine contains stories originally published in 2014 & 2015, including Aliette de Bodard’s BSFA award-winning Xuya tale “Three Cups of Grief, by Starlight,” Kristine Kathryn Rusch’s “The Last Surviving Gondola Widow,” and the first Clarkesworld story to win a Hugo, Naomi Kritzer’s Cat Pictures Please.” Here’s the complete TOC.
Introduction by Neil Clarke
“Three Cups of Grief, by Starlight” by Aliette de Bodard
“Cameron Rhyder’s Legs” by Matthew Kressel
“Cassandra” by Ken Liu
“Indelible” by Gwendolyn Clare
“Slowly Builds An Empire” by Naim Kabir
“The Last Surviving Gondola Widow” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
“Ether” by Zhang Ran
“A Universal Elegy” by Tang Fei
“All Original Brightness” by Mike Buckley
“No Vera There” by Dominica Phetteplace
“Fatima’s Wound” by Kali Wallace
“Seeking boarder for rm w/ attached bathroom, must be willing to live with ghosts ($500 / Berkeley)” by Rahul Kanakia
“The Long Goodnight of Violet Wild” by Catherynne M. Valente
“An Exile of the Heart”y by Jay Lake
“Lovecraft” by Helena Bell
“The Three Resurrections of Jessica Churchill” by Kelly Robson
“Now Dress Me in My Finest Suit and Lay Me in My Casket” by M. Bennardo
“Taxidermist in the Underworld” by Maria Dahvana Headley
“The Apartment Dweller’s Bestiary”y by Kij Johnson
“Pithing Needle” by E. Catherine Tobler
“Coming of the Light” by Chen Qiufan
“Pernicious Romance”y by Robert Reed
“The Magician and Laplace’s Demon” by Tom Crosshill
“The Long Haul, from The Annals of Transportation, The Pacific Monthly, May 2009” by Ken Liu
“Meshed” by Rich Larson
“Cat Pictures Please” by Naomi Kritzer
About the Authors
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
Both volumes were published by Neil Clarke’s Wyrm Publishing. Here’s the complete publishing details.
Clarkesworld: Year Nine, Volume One (334 pages, $15.95 in trade paperback/$6.99 digital, March 23, 2018) — cover by Lake Hurwitz
Clarkesworld: Year Nine, Volume Two (324 pages, $15.95 in trade paperback/$6.99 digital, June 26, 2018) — cover by Liu Junwei
The first two volumes in the series were titled Realms; Nick Mamatas and Sean Wallace were credited as editors. It then switched to Clarkesworld: Year 3, edited by Neil and Sean. Here’s a few of the earlier editions.
Cover art by Rolando Cyril, Georgi Markov, and Ferdinand D. Ladera
We’ve covered three previous volumes in the series so far:
Clarkesworld: Year Six edited by Neil Clarke and Sean Wallace
Clarkesworld: Year Seven edited by Neil Clarke and Sean Wallace
Clarkesworld: Year Eight edited by Neil Clarke and Sean Wallace
Check out the latest issue of Clarkesworld here, and see all our recent Magazine coverage here.
Wow, huge. I have the first 6 or 7, then got behind.
How many of those did you read? If you read them all, you’re still way ahead of me!
Really appreciate them having print editions of these. I wish the Beneath Ceaseless Skies annuals had print versions
> I wish the Beneath Ceaseless Skies annuals had print versions
Yeah, I wish… wait, there are Beneath Ceaseless Skies annuals? *scurries off to check*
Holy cats! You’re right, there are. The most recent was The Best of Beneath Ceaseless Skies Online Magazine, Year Nine, which came out in September. It’s 329 pages!
Well, I have some catching up to do. Thanks for the tip!