I’ve got an official announcement, then a few follow-up details:
“Beginning with Issue 5, InterGalactic Medicine Show will be published on a quarterly basis with a new issue coming every three months. There will be a new Ender’s world story as part of each issue, but that story won’t necessarily be released in conjunction with the issue. For example, OSC’s story “Gold Bug” which was slated to go in Issue 4 was co-opted by Marvel Comics to become a bonus story in their Wyrms graphic novel. Therefore, OSC now has to write a new story for Issue 4. “Gold Bug” will eventually be one of the IGMS stories.
However, please rest assured that your payment for Issue 4 does include an Ender’s world story, and it will be added to that issue as soon as it is written.
Additionally, in order to keep our commitment to quarterly issues, when the time comes to post each new issue, if the Ender story is not ready, we’ll go online without it and add it as soon as it’s available.”
Ultimately what this amounts to is two main things: 1) The obvious: The magazine will be released quarterly, whether Scott’s story is ready or not. I believe that in the long run this is what’s in the best interests of the magazine.
2) The less obvious: This will simplify the lives of the writers submitting to IGMS.
Here’s why. Though I’m current on reading 95% of the submissions, there are still a handful of folks who have been waiting a looong time for a reply. However, if you have not heard from me and your story was submitted more than 100 days ago, take heart: all that means is that I like your story and have been waiting to sort some of these publishing/scheduling matters out.
The reason for the delay is precisely because we were having trouble publishing issues on a regular basis. Previously Scott didn’t want to go forward with a new issue until his Ender story was published in the most recent issue. His first priority has to be the novels, screenplays, and other projects that produce income. IGMS pays professional rates to both the artists and authors whose works appear in each issue, as well as paying the regular columnists whose work appears for free. And right now most of that money is coming out of Scott’s pocket, so his paying work has to come first. Unfortunately that results in him not having time to write the Ender stories as punctually as he’d prefer. It’s quite the Catch-22 (at least as far as IGMS is concerned).
Getting back to my original point, I have been hesitant to buy too many stories because if I bought a year’s worth of stories based on a quarterly publishing schedule, but we continued publishing two issues a year instead of four (which has been the case thus far) – well…, I think the problem is obvious. Authors could be waiting as long as two to three years to see their stories published, and I didn’t want to do that to anyone. So I made, for better or worse, a conscious choice to sit on a few things for six months (until this issue was resolved), rather than risk making some folks wait several years.
Now the matter is resolved though. Our target date for publication of issue 5 is mid-June, a new issue will be published every three months after that, and I now know exactly how many stories I need and can proceed accordingly.
Please feel free to join me as I breathe a deep sigh of relief…