Saturday, February 17, 2007

Ancient History

This year is the 25th anniversary of Interzone, Britain’s only science fiction magazine. Its present publisher, Andy Cox, asked a bunch of writers for a paragraph about their involvment with Interzone over the years. Here’s my answer.

Summer 1987, Brighton, the World Science Fiction Convention. I'm a new
author with a couple of short stories to my name and a forthcoming novel
that only Malcolm Edwards and I know about. Malcolm is an editor with
Gollancz, Gollancz is hosting the pre-Hugo Award party, and my
unpublished novel gets me a ticket. In the press, a dapper young gent
squints at my name badge. 'Paul McAuley? I thought "King of the Hill"
was pretty good.' 'King of the Hill' was the second story of mine that
Interzone published; that was how I met Kim Newman.* What did
Interzone do for me? It plugged me into the science fiction community,
gentle reader, and turned me on. It was no small thing.

*I like to think that Kim said 'pretty good', but it's possible that he
may have said 'interesting' instead. Kim spent his childhood in
Somerset and that's where 'King of the Hill' is set, so whether or not
he thought it any good, he would have found it of interest.


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