Blood on Vellum: Notes from the (New) Apex Magazine Editor

by on Sep 28, 2011 in Blog | 4 comments

It’s an honor to follow Catherynne M. Valente as the editor of Apex Magazine. She did a fantastic job. Under her editorial hand and Jason Sizemore’s publishing leadership, the magazine has grown and thrived, showcasing brilliant pieces from diverse authors, and garnering critical acclaim.

To save you the time of frantically Googling me, I thought I’d tell you a bit about myself.

I’m a curator of rare books and special collections. My day job involves working with historical popular culture materials ranging from dime novels to contemporary science fiction, fantasy, and horror literature (including the literary papers of over 50 SF/F/H writers).

I’m a writer and editor, known primarily for my nonfiction work, such as co-editing the Hugo Award-winning Chicks Dig Time Lords (2010) and its two follow-ups, Whedonistas (2011) and Chicks Dig Comics (2012). Academic articles and critical essays about SF/F media, the zombie apocalypse, and libraries are also part of my repertoire.

I’m an SF/F fan and reader who reads widely within the genre, as well as the current chair of the 2012 James Tiptree, Jr. Award Jury. I routinely attend conventions throughout the Midwest.

Now that we’ve gotten the pleasantries out of the way…

My version of Apex will be comparable to Cat’s. (This would be why she was glad to have me follow her). We possess similar taste.

Apex will continue to shove at the edges of the genre until they bleed. I will be publishing transgressive, visceral stories and poems that show us the best and worst of who we are, rendered with style and precision. Expect work outside of your comfort zone: thoughtful, experimental, emotional, and brave. Here you will find stories and poems that show us a heart, sliced out carefully, still beating in the writer’s hands, for all the world to see.

I believe that we are in the Rainbow Age of Science Fiction and Fantasy Literature, as Elizabeth Bear puts it. Apex will publish stories and poems by all kinds of writers. We will do our damnedest to showcase the brilliance that comes from the diversity of this field.

Issue 30 (November) will feature new stories by Elizabeth Bear and Catherynne Valente, poems from Tim Pratt and Bryan Thao Worra, a reprint story from Robert Shearman, and an essay from Tansy Rayner Roberts.

This is where I begin. Let’s see how far Apex can go.


Lynne M. Thomas, Editor

Apex Magazine


  1. Congratulations on this position.

    I appreciate this statement “I will be publishing transgressive, visceral stories and poems that show us the best and worst of who we are” Whether a piece is literary or genre, or one of the myriad sub-genres, that’s what great writing usually comes down to. Of course there are the rare pieces that may not feature people as the main characters, but that’s the exception.

    • Stories about “non-people” that achieve the other criteria are still most welcome.

  2. Hey Lynn,

    We met (briefly) at WorldCon, although I had not put together all the pieces at that time. May I just say: I envy your dayjob immensely. I look forward to what you have planned for the magazine.

    Congrats, and welcome!

    • Thanks! It’s nice to have (briefly) met you. 🙂

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