Anthologies and Me

 

My Mom would say every home should have a dog and a cat: the dog to love you; the cat to make you earn it. I feel the same about writing and editing. I’ve done both professionally in fiction and non-fiction for long as I’ve been published, since 1985. My own writing is like puppy love. Editing's where I work to help someone else, and that result, that love, is every bit as joyful.

 

Anthologies? Oh, those are best of all. I get to collect wonderful stories. (MINE!) I get to collect amazing authors, especially new ones. (ALL MINE!) Ah, work with amazing authors. Yes. That’s what I mean. It's not as though I take them home with me or anything. Not all the time.
Click to view an annotated list of Science Fiction Anthologies
Annotated List of Science Fiction Anthologies edited by Julie E. Czerneda
(in alphabetical order)

 

Packing Fraction
Packing Fraction and Other Tales of Science & Imagination, edited by Julie E. Czerneda, Trifolium Books*, 1999. ISBN 1895579899. (This ISBN, much to our chagrin, was applied in error by Books-in-Print to another title as well, a book about cochlear implants. Everytime we fixed that, it would surface again. I imagine it’s still going on.) Interior art by Larry Stewart. My first anthology. When I first contracted this project, I hadn’t sold a piece of my own science fiction. How daring was that? But I did know what was missing from libraries, because I faced that every time I went into schools and tried to find short stories with great science written for young adults. The stories in Packing Fraction are also in No Limits, my teacher’s guide to using SF, complete with annotations and activities. Every author I approached leapt at the chance to be involved. This was a family affair, too. The book pages were designed by Roger Czerneda and our kids (and their friends) were among the test readers. Larry Stewart’s art (plus his body of work) and Robert J. Sawyer’s story “Stream of Consciousness” from Packing Fraction both won Prix Aurora Awards in 2000.

 

Polaris
Polaris: A Celebration of Polar Science, edited by Julie E. Czerneda, Star Ink Books*, 2007 ISBN 13: 978-0889953727, cover and interior illustrations by Jean-Pierre Normand. Special Introduction by Amber Church and Tyler Kuhn on behalf of the International Polar Year, who also acted as science content reviewers. I didn’t plan this ahead of time. I simply wanted another Wonder Zone title and chose to focus on the arctic. Once I started, I discovered Polaris could be published during the International Polar Year so I contact the organizers about what we might do together. The result was the International Polar Year Student Writing Contest. The winner was published in this book, “Swept Away” by Sarah Niedoba, then in grade 7. Winner of the 2007 Canadian Science Writers’ Association’s Award for Science & Society, Youth Category. Award accepted in Whitehorse, Yukon, by author Claire Eamer.

 

ReVisions
ReVisions edited by Julie E. Czerneda and Isaac Szpindel, DAW Books Inc., 2004 ISBN 0756402409, cover art by Kenn Brown and Chris Wren, Mondolithic Studios. What if a scientific discovery or technological innovation had taken place in a different time or culture? From this premise came these alternative history stories. We had the authors add a short description of what really happened -- I confess it’s because I worried they’d written such plausible scenarios, readers might be convinced by the fiction! Isaac Szpindel’s story “When the Morning Stars Sang Together” won the 2005 Prix Aurora Award.

 

Space Inc.
Space Inc. edited by Julie E. Czerneda, DAW Books Inc., 2003 ISBN 075640147X, cover art by Jean-Pierre Normand. A look at the future of regular jobs in space. My first DAW anthology. It felt like entering the big leagues, because this was my first time working with legendary editor Martin H. Greenberg and the great folks at Teknobooks, who do the initial production work on anthologies for publishers like DAW. It also felt very comfortable, because I found the important things were the same. Authors who wanted to write. Great stories. And I could continue my habit of having at least one never-before-published author in every anthology. Winner of the 2004 Prix Aurora Award for Best Work in English Other.

 

Tales from the Wonder Zone - Explorer, edited by Julie E. Czerneda, Trifolium Books*, 2002, ISBN 1552440222, cover and interior illustrations by Jean-Pierre Normand. Special Introduction by C. J. Cherryh. I’d asked CJ for a story (she’s my favourite author) and she was too busy with other projects. However, she then kindly offered this introduction. How wonderful was that! (Along the way, she commented it would drive her bibilographers nuts because she’d already planned to title one of her novels Explorer.)

 


Odyssey
Tales from the Wonder Zone - Odyssey, edited by Julie E. Czerneda, Trifolium Books*, 2004, ISBN 1552440184, cover and interior illustrations by Jean-Pierre Normand. Special introduction by Greg Bear. This anthology features a story by Peter Watts that he’d sent me in 2002 for Stardust. I loved it, but felt ending the world more appropriate for grade 9 readers than grade 4. Peter kindly let me hang on to it for Odyssey. Jean-Pierre Normand won the 2004 Prix Aurora Award for his art (and body of work.)

 

Orbiter
Tales from the Wonder Zone - Orbiter, edited by Julie E. Czerneda, Trifolium Books*, 2002, ISBN 1552440206, cover and interior illustrations by Jean-Pierre Normand. Special introduction by David Brin. Contains the first, and so far only, science fiction story written by the famed Anne Bishop. Anne queried me before submitting her story about word count because “A Strand in the Web” was going to be a little longer than my guidelines. A little longer? It was a novella! Faced with such brilliance, I did what any editor would. Asked the publisher to double the number of pages in the book. And we did.

 

Stardust
Tales from the Wonder Zone - Stardust, edited by Julie E. Czerneda, Trifolium Books*, 2002, ISBN 1552440184, cover and interior illustrations by Jean-Pierre Normand. Special Introduction by Gregory Benford. Though we did the first three Wonder Zone titles at once, Stardust was the production prototype. Jean-Pierre and I went through months of design work on those pages. We started with full colour throughout, which was fantastic, but alas, the budget couldn’t support it, and we would have had to price the books out of reach. (We did get to do colour later, though. We did a full-sized poster of the solar system probes, with Jean-Pierre’s stunning astronomical art of the planets.)

 

Under Cover of Darkness
Under Cover of Darkness, edited by Julie E. Czerneda and Jana Paniccia, DAW Books Inc., 2007, ISBN 13: 978-0756404048, cover art by Kenn Brown and Chris Wren, Mondolithic Studios. A look at secret societies. We included science and fantasy in this anthology. Jana's strong concept and the response of our authors led this book to win the 2008 Prix Aurora Award for Best Work in English Other.

 


Note: The Tales from the Wonder Zone anthologies were specifically designed for use in classrooms. You’ll find additional information concerning these in the “Classroom” section of this website. Do the titles sound familiar? Every book was named for a solar system probe. In 2003, at the Toronto Worldcon, The Tales from the Wonder Zone series was given a Special Award for Best Science and Technology Education by the Golden Duck Committee. The award was presented by Hal Clement.

 

(* These titles are available through Fitzhenry & Whiteside, who bought Trifolium Books. As well, Star Ink Books was an imprint of Fitzhenry & Whiteside.)
Pen
As editor, I learned book-making took more than words. Art references. Format. Design. The right printer. Budget. Promotion. (Ask DAW about my early obsession with page count. They’ll laugh.)
Rattray Marsh

I've been a publisher too. For a decade, Czerneda Publishing Inc. did science books, as well as the first Tim Horton’s Timbit booklets and Rattray Marsh, Then and Now. Star Ink Books (via Fitzhenry & Whiteside) produced this new edition of Dun Lady’s Jess by Doranna Durgin and Polaris.

Dun Lady's Jess

But publishing is all-consuming. Both times I happily returned to being a writer and, on occasion, editor.

- Julie