A few thoughts on ChiZine

You’ve maybe heard the news about ChiZine and its publishers.

If not, you can start here and here. Content warnings abound. First off, there are people who were far more affected by the publishers, and the only reason for this post is to amplify their experiences.

I was an intern at ChiZine for most of 2011, but left on my own terms to get a paying job after being told it wasn’t an option there. Even though I wasn’t affected to my knowledge (but who knows what was said behind my back), I believe all of it. There’s so much that’s corroborated, and it’s so so awful and beyond mismanagement. I hope that something positive comes from all this, and I get the feeling it will eventually. My thoughts are with all the affected (former) authors and staff.

While I’ve tried to process the news, I’ve felt a very real sense of personal loss surrounding the community related to the Chiaroscuro Reading Series (ChiSeries) that I’d hoped to return to now that I’m back in the city, and finding some kind of normalcy in my schedule.  Clearly that’s no longer possible, but I’ve learned about a new reading series called Ephemera  where I hope to find some people again (in case anyone local’s reading). This is their mandate:

We’d like to take this opportunity to restate our mandate: To celebrate SFF by underrepresented, marginalised, and emerging voices, And to create an accessible, welcoming, and kind community space.

So now there are at least 3 Canadian genre presses I will avoid (ChiZine, Edge, Exile). Please do support the authors though, they most likely have nothing to do with the problems. If you’re concerned, then buy direct from an author when possible.

“Good” presses according to one person I’ve talked to since would include Undertow, Tyche, Innsmouth Free Press, Laksa (new to me), with ECW and Inhabit as others who don’t specialize in genre but publish it. I’d also like to take the time to mention magazines  like Anathema, The Dark, and Augur.

You may see a number of titles disappear for a time, as a lot of authors (Christopher Golden, Bracken McLeod, Nicholas Kaufman, others previously and more to come, I’m sure) have been asking for and obtained reversion of their rights.

There may be more news on the next The Horror Show with Brian Keene, as he’s preparing to discuss the issue.



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