Blog Usurps Yet Another Magazine Function


By Neal Comment

Keeping in mind I’m so closely connected to science fiction author John Scalzi that I’m appearing with him next Thursday (1/26) at Germ Books in Philadelphia…he’s got a new development on his Whatever blog this morning: an original short story by Nick Mamatas and Eliani Torres available nowhere else in print or online. And “Who Put the Bomp?” is a pretty darn good story, at that. As Scalzi explained a few weeks ago, the online publication came about through his recent guest editorship of a cliché-themed issue of the SF magazine Subterranean (which, by no coincidence, I will have my very first short fiction published in). “[Their story] made it past the first couple of cuts for the magazine,” Scalzi wrote, “but when it came time to make final cuts, I cut it because it didn’t quite mesh with the other pieces I was planning to buy.” But “I kept coming back to it, and to be entirely honest, it was just so unclassifiably weird that it grew on me each time I read it.” So he opened his own wallet and bought the story himself, to publish on Whatever.

It’s an interesting experiment: As Scalzi points out, his blog has a larger audience than almost every science-fiction magazine in circulation, so the story is getting out to a comparatively large audience.