There’s much ado of late about Hugo Awards and other such things, and while it’d certainly be lovely to have a bit of shine on my mantle — though I would need to purchase a mantle to hold it — I’d rather take this opportunity to talk about some very well deserving individuals for your consideration in the editorial categories.
Yes, these are editors I’ve worked with. Each one of them has contributed both to the quality of my work as well as my ever-ongoing education as a writer. They are also lovely humans, which goes a very long way with me.
Editor, Short Form
I had the distinct pleasure of working with three different editors this year on my short fiction, and I find each one of them deserving of whatever laurels can be bestowed upon them.
Alex Shvartsman, UFO Publishing: I worked with Alex on “Confessions of an Interplanetary Art Fraud” for Unidentified Funny Objects 4. The story was accepted but certainly needed work, and Alex really helped me kick it up a notch or six. He’s a great editor who gets humor, which is a lot harder to write than it may seem.
Ross Lockhart, Word Horde: I remember thinking about submitting to Ross’ Tales of Jack the Ripper a few years ago, but found it hard to “go there” in terms of horror. Cthulhu Fhtagn! was much more up my alley, and my “On a Kansas Plain” was included in the anthology in August. Ross’ anthologies are always among the best in the genre. Give them a read.
Chris Carey, Paizo: “Crisis of Faith” was a bucket-list win for me, having grown up with D&D and owing so much to the multi-sided dice. Chris really helped me capture the nuances of Pathfinder and made the story so much fun to read in the end. I would write about clerics of beer gods any day if Chris was editing.
Editor, Long Form
Cory Allyn, Night Shade Books: This post was actually inspired by a conversation I had yesterday with Cory on MJ-12: Inception. We’ve done three novels together now, and Cory has made each of them far better than they were when I handed them in. He has a great way of pulling me out of the weeds and helping me see the story landscape from on high. Ideas and improvements just flow right out of me when we’re working on stuff. He edited The Venusian Gambit last year, and not only did a great job of it, but was incredibly supportive and encouraging at a time when I really needed it. Plus, he and Jason Katzman have really done a bang-up job reviving Night Shade. Just a great person to work with.
Ross Lockhart, Word Horde: No, I didn’t do a novel with Ross this year, though he was my editor for The Daedalus Incident and taught me so much in the short time we worked together. I’m including him because of his work with Molly Tanzer’s Vermilion, an excellent novel that, like The Daedalus Incident in 2013, was a SF/F Debut of the Month at Library Journal when it came out this year. Word Horde keeps putting out great books under Ross’ leadership and editorial purview. He’s one of the best editors out there, small-press or large.
So there you go. I would encourage you to check out all their books — not just the ones with me in ’em — and give them some consideration for a shiny rocket ship. If they don’t have mantles, we’ll do a Kickstarter or something.