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scalpel_mag, for all your sf reviewing and criticism needs.
First issue includes:
If you want to contribute, guidelines are here.
On the one hand, hey, good for them. It's always good to see more reviews and more reviewing-friendly magazines, especially ones with such lofty ambitions.

On the other hand, get back to me when their published reviews meet their guidelines (especially the "no one but you could have written this review" one) and they have enough of a business plan in place to be able to pay people.
On the other hand, get back to me when their published reviews meet their guidelines (especially the "no one but you could have written this review" one)

That's a very fair criticism, and I take your point. We're working toward it.

and they have enough of a business plan in place to be able to pay people.

We could only hope. If you know of a business plan model that could make that happen, please share. To date, it's all out-of-pocket for Jonathan and me, and my guess is that, say, Amazon links ain't going to net us enough to pay our contributors more than a few cents each, for instance. Considering we've still got a dozen pieces in the pipeline that will be going up over the course of the next couple days, and that we plan to keep that speed up for the duration, at even $50 per review we're looking at a cost of $850 per (roughly) "issue". Not chump change for Jonathan and me to shell out.

--gabe chouinard
As much as it goes against the modern grain, I would honestly recommend having your readers pay for the content they read. Ad-supported publications generally do very poorly online, in my experience. By all means offer free content, but either solicit donations or put some of your content behind a paywall. I've yet to see anyone make it work any other way.

Another option, of course, is to start up a separate money-making venture and funnel the profits from it into support of Scalpel; then it's still out of pocket, but as your "pocket" has increased by $850 or however much, there's no net loss to you other than your time and effort. Running two startups at once is pretty hectic, though.

I certainly wish you the best with it. Roberts's column was terrific and I'd love to see more like it. I hope you can encourage your reviewers to really let loose, not be so shy with their I-statements and opinions (speaking as a reviewer, I am so tired of reading and writing reviews where the reader is referred to as "one" and the reviewer's voice is buried beneath equivocations), and have a good time telling people what they think. I'd be willing to take a bit of a pay cut for a venue that encouraged that sort of writing--or make a donation to it, or pay to read it--and I'm sure I'm not the only one.
We've discussed various ways of generating cash, including using a combination of Amazon links, PayPal donations, ad revenue and whatever else we can throw in. The problem is that with so many streams, it's difficult to keep people interested enough to actually contribute. Another thing to deal with is that if we did such a thing, we'd want to keep our accounting transparent. Jonathan and me certainly aren't in it for the cash!

As for reviews... we're encouraging as best we can, and I hope that some of our own contributions will go some way toward illustrating more precisely what we're looking for. It comes down to those contributing reviewers, and how willing they are to dig in and produce the kind of stuff we want.

But in the end, we're still in the nebulous stage. After all, this mag went from concept to launch in... what? A few days over a month? So we'll evolve.
Question: is there anyone in sf/fantasy who has a web-only publication with decent rates of pay for writers and a genuinely sustainable (ie not donation-seeking) business model? I guess Ellen Datlow's scifiction was the closest we had - though evidently it wasn't sustainable in the long-run. SH and Helix qualify if you drop the restriction about donations. I can't think of anyone doing this in the non-fic field.
Why isn't donation seeking sustainable?

Also, I point you to Chizine and Baen's Universe.
How are things over at IROSF these days? I know they were talking about eventually charging for content, but I signed up when it was still free and my access was never cut off. Not that $70 is mucho dinero, but it's better than a kick in the eye.
Well, that's all very nice (and the review of Gradisil nails everything I don't really like about it and why it's an interesting book nonetheless), but it's not really doing anything that different from Strange Horizons that I can tell.
Any comparisons to Strange Horizon are flattering I think. Scalpel's my first turn as an editor and I'll happily admit that I've learned a lot from my experiences with Niall. If I do as good a job as he does then I'll be a happy man.

We do have a few things a bit different in the pipeline though, but you'll have to wait to see those ;-)

Jonathan M - Scalpel Magazine.

Does the review read as if it could have been written by anyone but you? If so, this is not a review for Scalpel Magazine.

Going to steal all the Caps Lock keys in the world. BE RIGHT BACK.
Hey, aren't you going to write me 8,000 words for Foundation in caps?
Do they have to be different words?
You are going to review Transformers, right? I don't care where, I just want you to do it.
Sure. When it comes out here. EVENTUALLY. FUCKS.
Wait! You can parse that as meaning "read like it could not have been written by you", which kind of makes it okay.



-- tom
Manifest Destiny dictates a white-man's prophecy - White-man's world, white-man's Apocolypse

Twenty-somethings are conditioned to respond positively to magic::::::they are the extacy generation.
This is not by accident. Expect they will be an important generation ("in charge", etc) when the battle between the Anti-Christ and Second Coming of Christ ocurrs.
This of course will be a 20-year war-revelry cycle distraction theater, and they want these people consumed by the high level of magic that will ocurr.
This generation is The Damned.
You're all going to die PEAKING like you're on X.

Austrian Sigmund Freud is known as the father of psychoanalysis, yet people have (mental) health problems because of their disfavor, illustrating the preditory purpose of this discipline, this individual.
These people.
Of course Hitler was Austrian. Glock, maker of the semi-automatic gun favored by black street gangs such as the Bloods and the Crips, is Austrian.
RedBull Energy drink, Buwdeiser both Austrian.

The Holocaust was foreshadowing, yet another example of the Jews sacrificing to help the disfavored::::
1. 1492 exodus from Spain. Spain became evil - financed Columbus, initiated missionaries, USA (dumping ground of disfavored victimized by god), etc.
2. Spread throughout Europe as clue to Christians worshipping a false god.
3. "Quasi-Holocaust claim" contradicting boss.
4. 5. 6. 7. etc. etc. etc.
The Apocalypse (or an Apocalyptic event) will be initiated by an Austrian. When the national referendum to allow foreign-born individuals to run for president is introduced I recommend you DEFY and vote NO!! In the years prior to this vote the gods will send POWERFUL clues suggesting the IMPORTANCE OF DEFIANCE.

Apex of irony in the Situaiton:::Jew calls in Quasi-Holocaust claim and takes boss, re-igniting the flames of anti-Semitism among blacks in the crucial years before the black holocaust:::


Italy's boot is a clue showing the god's intent with the Romans AND their active involvement::::The gods micromanaged the Eutruscans into their role as Romans, just as they micromanaged me with Artificial Intelligence into the role they scripted for this Situation.
Oshkosh is a clue just as Lake Michigan and Green Bay are clues. Oshkosh is the ejaculate clue:::Life springs forth from this region.
Expect your traditional Second Coming of Christ to come from the region. The gods dirtied me up but the Second Coming will be squeeky clean. Consistant with the possibility of matrilinial lineage it may be the mother's family from the Lake Winnebago area fulfilling some "Manifest Destiny" theater:::The gods emphisize the evil, utilizing "magic" as they will during the Second Coming of Christ, and they minimize the good, as you see with boss, for the people's collective favor has fallen sufficiently to justify this behavior, justified with the masculinization of women, sexual deviacy, etc.
You see Manifest Destiny all around you (corporate)::::Manifest Destiny dictates a white-man's prophecy:::::White-man's world, white-man's Apocolypse. Expect The End to ocurr EXACTLY as it reads in Revelations.

This isn’t about reals and clones. This is about the brains and the brain-less:::The brain-less are people whose families have been OUT FOR GENERATIONS, families lucky enough to avoid this disturbing age and its accompanying abuses. ALL of them got out back when they were peasants, even the royal families and Pharrohs, and the gods used these tools to create this stratigic history here on Earth:::There is no such thing as Earthly-management. Also the gods replace strategic individuals frequently as a risk/benefit managerial tactic.
This is the key which unlocks the god’s puzzle.

Women are the favored gender:::Those who understand what it means to be a woman are already halfway there.
The purpose of the masculinization of women of the last 40 years was to pave the way (justification) for The End, for it brought mankind's collective favor down.

You have to search the rest. Appx. 25,000 charecters.
You have to search the rest. Appx. 25,000 charecters.

Spammer who expects you to do the legwork. Awesome!
This is from the Guo review, right?

-- tom

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