Lightspeed: Edited by John Joseph Adams




Editorial, August 2010

Welcome to issue three of Lightspeed. I want to thank all of you readers again for all of your support. We’ve had a great run so far, and the enthusiastic feedback of readers like yourself goes a long way toward letting us know what’s working and what’s not.

With that in mind, before I get to this month’s teasers, I just wanted to suggest a way for our loyal readers to help spread the gospel of Lightspeed. We love it when you leave comments on, but I would also like to invite you to post a review of any of our issues on (where it is available on Kindle) or in the iBooks store (for iPhone and iPad), or wherever else you might find the ebook edition available. Or if you don’t want to spend time writing a review, just giving any of our issues a positive “star rating” might encourage other readers to try the magazine.

With that out of the way, on to this month’s teasers!

Catherynne M. Valente teaches us “How to Become a Mars Overlord,” with her step-by-step program that enables each and every one of us to find the right Mars for us to rule over. (Original, August 3)

Tananarive Due tells the tragic story of “Patient Zero” in her chilling account of a child being raised in isolation, ignorant of an apocalyptic infection raging in the outside world. (Reprint, August 10)

In the audacious “Arvies,” author Adam-Troy Castro tells the story of a post-poverty utopia in which everybody lucky enough to be plugged into the society’s opportunities gets to do whatever the heck they want to do with their lives, indulging their slightest whims—including living their lives inside a living womb. (Original, August 17)

And for our final fiction selection of the month, we present “More Than the Sum of His Parts” by Joe Haldeman, an examination of one man’s transformation from human to cyborg that asks the question: As a person becomes less and less organic, might they become less and less human? (Reprint, August 24)

On the nonfiction side of things this month, in addition to author spotlights on all four of our fictioneers, we’re starting off with “Dead Mars,” a fascinating article by Astronomy Cast’s Dr. Pamela Gay in which she tells us how Mars, now dead, once lived, and how we might make it live again. (August 3)

Carol Pinchefsky, meanwhile, brings us “Bangs & Whimpers: A Look at the Top Five Doomsday Scenarios” and explains why we may or may not have to worry about them. (August 10)

You won’t want to miss Lightspeed nonfiction editor Andrea Kail’s interview with multiple award-winning author Robert J. Sawyer, in which he discusses the possibility of the internet becoming sentient, religion’s place in science fiction, and what it was like watching his novel FlashForward adapted into a television program. (August 17)

And last, but not least, we have an exploration of the cutting-edge science being done today in the field of prosthetics and cybernetics from author Matt London, in which he tells of an amputee mountain climber who designed and built his own bionic legs and explains how the Six Million Dollar Man would have been a bargain at that price if he were (re)built today. (August 24)

So that’s our issue this month. I hope you enjoy it. And remember, if you don’t want to wait for the content to be released on the site throughout the month, or you’d just like a handy, downloadable version of the magazine on your favorite handheld electronic reading device, Lightspeed is available directly from our publisher, Prime Books, in DRM-free ePub format, and is also available in Kindle, iBooks, and Mobipocket format from external vendors, or from Fictionwise, which offers a variety of formats.

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John Joseph Adams


John Joseph Adams is the series editor of Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy and is the bestselling editor of more than thirty anthologies, including Wastelands and The Living Dead. Recent books include A People’s Future of the United States, Wastelands: The New Apocalypse, and the three volumes of The Dystopia Triptych. Called “the reigning king of the anthology world” by Barnes & Noble, John is a two-time winner of the Hugo Award (for which he has been a finalist twelve times) and an eight-time World Fantasy Award finalist. John is also the editor and publisher of Lightspeed and is the publisher of its sister-magazines, Fantasy and Nightmare. For five years, he ran the John Joseph Adams Books novel imprint for Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Find him online at and @johnjosephadams.