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Interzone: 22 years and counting

So, after 22 years Interzone is to change hands.

We don't really do editorials at infinity plus, but the end of an era at Interzone makes me feel that we should do something to acknowledge the huge part the magazine has played in the on-going renaissance in British sf.

Naturally enough, I have mixed feelings about the change, as one might about any major change. Pretty much since its launch in 1982, David Pringle has been up there running the show, both on the editorial side (marked with a Hugo Award for the magazine in 1995, along with repeated short-listings) and on the business and production side. He's been ably helped by a strong team over the years; it'd be invidious to name names, but people like Lee Montgomerie, Simon Ounsley, Andy Robertson and Paul Brazier have all made invaluable contributions, along with many others.

It had become fairly clear that the magazine was limping along recently, with publication schedules slipping, and a step back from monthly production to bi-monthly; the magazine also suffered significant losses when other businesses folded, owing Interzone money. One couldn't help but anticipate the worst.

Now Andy Cox's TTA Press has stepped in to revive Interzone and I'm looking forward with great interest to see how the magazine will grow and develop under this new regime. My head tells me this is a Good Thing, but in my heart, the real Interzone will always be the one that David edited, the magazine that launched so many spectacular careers, and nurtured many others. It was Interzone that published the early work of Stephen Baxter, Greg Egan and Paul McAuley; it was in this magazine that we saw fiction and non-fiction from William Gibson and Bruce Sterling, where Angela Carter and JG Ballard rubbed shoulders with Ian R MacLeod and Lisa Tuttle.

Twenty-two years at such a high standard? That's one hell of an achievement, and just maybe the field will honour David Pringle in some way at the World SF Convention when it's held in Glasgow in 2005. It bloody well should.

So mixed feelings, yes. Mixed because it's sad to see an era drawing to a close, and a magazine to which I feel a strong attachment, both as contributor and fan, closing a chapter. But there are good feelings mixed in there too: Andy Cox has edited and published the superb TTA for ten years, and for a shorter time the highly-regarded Crimewave. He can do this magazine-publishing thing, and he can do it very well indeed. Maybe the time is ripe for someone else to take on the much-loved Interzone and breathe some new life into the beast, and let's hope we'll have another 22 years at least of Interzone publishing some of the best short sf in the field.

Here's wishing David Pringle the very best in whatever comes next, and looking forward to the healthy continuation of a fine publication.

Keith Brooke, May 2004
...always proud to be part of the Interzone generation

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