Help Aurealis gain professional SFWA status

Aurealis needs your help. We want Aurealis to be officially recognised as a professional market by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA). We have done our sums and worked out that if we can get 1000 subscribers by the end of 2013, we will be able to increase our payment for short stories to a minimum of 5 cents a word. This will then mean we have met all the conditions to be viewed as a professional market by the SFWA. If we can achieve this, we will be the only Australian fiction magazine with this status. (Cosmos qualifies and it’s a great publication, but it’s primarily a science magazine, not a fiction magazine.)

Why is it important to you for Aurealis to be officially recognised as a professional market? If you are a writer or would-be writer of fantasy or science fiction, then it is extremely important. Recognition means that authors published in Aurealis can use these sales towards qualification for Active Membership of the SFWA (the short fiction criterion is to have 3 short stories published in professional markets).

The SFWA’s mission is to “inform, support, promote, defend and advocate for our member writers”. It is an organization strongly recommended to anyone interested in writing fantasy and science fiction. Despite the name, it has many international members, including a number of Australians. What’s in it for you? For a start, being able to write “Active member SFWA” on your submissions often gets you out of the slush pile. Active members (as opposed to Associate and Affiliate members) are also able to talk with agents, other writers, editors and industry professionals about the business and craft of science fiction and fantasy through private discussion forums. Plus they receive a complimentary copy of the SFWA Member Directory, get insider information in the bi-monthly Bulletin, and vote in the Nebula Awards.

Submitters to Aurealis who are subscribers also get their stories placed at the front of the Readers’ queue and fast-tracked. Even if you simply love reading fantasy and science fiction without any desire to write it, increasing our payment rates to professional level will mean many writers will send their very best work to Aurealis first, and you’ll have even higher quality stories to read each month.

In short, everyone benefits. So please, if you have ever thought about subscribing to Aurealis (or once subscribed to the print publication), now is the time to take out a 2013 Aurealis subscription for $19.99.

This is it. Our big chance to have an Australian SF magazine officially recognised as a professional market. Please join us for 2013.