Big Problems Within Pro Sci-Fi Markets

Jon Del Arroz interviews Kat Rocha, formerly of the Escape Artist Podcasts, about deep problems within their editorial structure. This isn’t limited to just this single professional market, but is an example of how the industry has chosen identity politics over quality stories.

DID THEY REJECT STORIES YOU PUSHED FORWARD OUTRIGHT BECAUSE OF IDENTITY POLITICS, REGARDLESS OF QUALITY?

I sat in on at least five editorial meetings with the idea of becoming familiar with their methods of stories selection. At first, the editors at Pseudopod were even handed in their approach. Stories passed to Editorial by slush readers were judged on quality of the content and nothing else. This was around the time that Escape Artists ownership changed hands, and I believe what I was witnessing was a hold over to when Murr & co still held the wheel. As time went on the focus changed drastically (and rapidly) under the new regime. Editorial wanted more and more attention exclusively on female authors and female-spotlighted events. As slush readers were directed to prioritize stories by women over men. It wasn’t so much a case of editorial outright saying “Women only” but by the time I left male authors and stories were almost never discussed.

Read the full interview on Jon’s blog here.