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New Pathways

Entry updated 19 February 2024. Tagged: Publication.

US Semiprozine, full title New Pathways into Science Fiction and Fantasy, 20 issues, March 1986 to Winter 1992; letter-size format, bimonthly to #6, then quarterly becoming irregular; edited and published by Michael G Adkisson from Plano, Texas, who also provided much of the magazine's artwork for the early issues. Lively, but struggling for readership, New Pathways mixed fiction, features and Comic strips, all at the radical end of the sf spectrum. The magazine was strongly influenced by Misha, who (under the alias Michelle Chocholak) became the fiction editor, but also contributed many Interviews. Through Misha, New Pathways attracted writers from the Cyberpunk fraternity and from the coterie around Philip K Dick (whose "Thoughts on VALIS" appeared in issue #7 April/May 1987), so that soon the magazine was closely associated with Paul Di Filippo, K W Jeter, Carter Scholz, Lewis Shiner, John Shirley and Bruce Sterling – all of whom contributed fiction or essays or were interviewed – plus the ever-enigmatic artist Ferret, his alter ego Mink Mole, and his colleague Matt Howarth who provided graphic art. Misha also acquired stories from Michael Bishop, Scott Edelman, Ernest Hogan, Jessica Amanda Salmonson and Don Webb, most of it experimental even if at times disarmingly straightforward. There were also a number of reprints from Brian W Aldiss's Enigmas series of short stories. Even though Misha moved on to pursue her writing career and Chris Kelly became Fiction Editor, the magazine continued following its well structured path, growing in both status and confidence. From issue #16 (July 1990) it boasted colour covers, which for #17 and #18 were wraparound.

The last issue appeared a year after the previous one and the magazine ceased at the height of its influence. It held a crucial place in the 1980s in providing a market for the alternate view of sf and Speculative Fiction. It was part of an evolution flowing from Scott Edelman's Last Wave and on to David Memmott's Ice River, C J Cypret's Nonstop Magazine and Steve Brown's Science Fiction Eye. [MA/PN]


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