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Because Wiggly Dragons Always Say “Future” To Me

Doug Miller, in the comments section of the “The Face of Science Fiction In 2007” post, says that ASIMOV’S sister publication ANALOG retains more modern covers.

It feels a little unfair to run the cover of the current ANALOG, as depicted on the front page of But I’m going to anyway.

“Science Fiction And Fact.” I dunno, maybe the bloke at the bottom is from Burning Man.

Once every year or two I develop a brief fascination with the state of sf magazine publishing. I really need to stop.

I used to pick up Gardner Dozois’ Year’s Best SF annual collections just for the long essay in the front that did a “state of the union” for sf publishing, including sales figures for the magazines. Does anyone know if those numbers appear online anywhere?

Published in brainjuice researchmaterial


  1. Evan Evan

    From the 23rd, for 2005:


    Subs: 18050
    Stands: 3397


    Subs: 25933
    Stands: 4614


    Subs: 14918
    Stands: 3822

  2. Agreed…and I raised an eyebrow at that cover as well, until I read the story it illustrates, which is actually about how heavily gene-tweaked future humans, having become so accustomed to using the nanotech in their bodies to spin virtual illusions for entertainment purposes become post technological – until the AI responsible for providing the computing power that sustains the illusions manipulates a human into arranging a nanotech plague that creates the conditions for its liberation. The illustration is actually one representing one of the entertainment illusions (being projected during a contest to determine the best illusionist) going seriously awry due to the hijinks described above.

    So yeah, it’s wriggly dragons and I almost barfed when I saw that cover, so you have a point – though the story it illustrates is actually very future oriented.

    As an aside Analog’s current issue (at least for subscribers) is always an issue or two ahead of the current month in terms of date – the issue I just finished was March 2007 – which was illustrated with am image of the interior of a cylindrical zero-g habitat from Karl Schroeder’s _Virga_ stories.

  3. Staldo Staldo

    I thought the long silvery things in the picture were sword blades. Looking closer, I guess they’re some kind of nano-illusionary beams?

  4. Warren Ellis Warren Ellis

    Doug, it’s really not about the art’s service to the story. It’s about the face the magazine presents to the world. And if it’s not selling more than 5K off the stand, well…

  5. At least these guys have shiny cover art. I miss OMNI.

  6. Thanks for the plug, Shay! We’ve actually been trying to get Warren’s attention (and submission) for a bit, now. Yeah, not _that_ kind of submission–the writing kind. Slightly more plausible?

    For that, anyone who wants to poke around our teasers for Issue 0 can get the story/poem of their choice for free–just send the subject “WARREN RULES” and the title of the piece you want. Limit one per email address, yadda yadda.

    I’ll hand those out for a few days. :)

  7. Warren Ellis Warren Ellis


  8. Would you believe nobody availed themselves of this particular offer? We’re having better success selling the magazine than sending out bits as freebies. I definitely do not understand marketing, yet. :) But I can’t complain too much–we’re doing a second printing now.

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