Each year Tom Dooley, the editor of Eclectica Magazine, analyzes trends in the list of Million Writers Award notable stories. According to his analysis, there are 158 stories on the 2011 notable list, a drop from last year's 191. In addition, exactly 100 different online publications landed stories on the list.
Last year Tom pointed out that it appeared genre magazines – meaning everything from science fiction to fantasy, horror, crime, and romance – were dominating the Million Writers Award. This year this genre "dominance" continues. While self-identifying genre magazines now make up only 21% of the magazines on the NWA notable list, down from 25% in 2010, among the magazines with the most stories on the list the percent of genre stories increased to 51%.
This doesn't mean genre stories make up half the stories on the notable list – I think the number is closer to a third. But among the elite online publications with the most stories on the list, genre magazines appear to be the 800 pound gorillas in the virtual room.
Why are there so many genre magazines and stories on the Million Writers notable list? As I mentioned last year, I believe this results from genre writers and readers accepting online magazines as a legitimate place for both publishing and reading short fiction, which results in a large number of professional online genre magazines. But I'd love to hear what other people think about this.
Pasted below is Tom's analysis. And as always, a big thanks to Tom for crunching these numbers.
|2010 Notable Stories Analysis|
|This year||Last Year|
|Total number of Notable Stories||158||191|
|Number of different publications w/ Notable Stories||100||108|
|Percent of publications self-identifying as "Genre"||21%||25%|
|Percent of stories from the top 10 publications belonging to self-identified "Genre" sites *||51%||48%|
|* Percent increases to 65% this year if two puplications tied for first, Blackbird and Words without Borders, are removed|
|Authors this year with more than one notable story|
|Name||This year||Last Year|
|Yoon Ha Lee||2||1|
|This year's top Notable Stories publications|
|Words without Borders||6|
|Clarkesworld Magazine||3rd (tied)||4|
|Daily Science Fiction||4|
|Chiaroscuro (ChiZine)||7th (tied)||3|
|Jersey Devil Press||3|
|The Barcelona Review||3|
|Top Notable Stories publications, last two years|
|Clarkesword Magazine||3rd (tied)||9|
|Words Without Borders||7th (tied)||6|
|Beneath Ceaseless Skies||6|
|Daily Science Fiction||4|
|Cha: An Asian Literary Journal||4|
|Prick of the Spindle||4|
|Top Notable Stories publications, all time (last eight years)|
|Strange Horizons||2nd (tied)||31|
|Clarkesword Magazine||8th (tied)||21|
|Fantasy Magazine||10th (tied)||18|
|Identity Theory||12th (tied)||15|
|Mississippi Review (New)||15|
|Barcelona Review||17th (tied)||13|
|Orson Scott Card's IMS||13|