Sign of the Times: Realms of Fantasy Closing

Bad news today from the wonderful SF Scope: Realms of Fantasy magazine is closing up shop after the next issue (April 2009).

The reasons given for the closure was plummeting newsstand sales. “Subscriptions are good, and advertising, until very recently, was fine,” said Managing Editor Laura Cleveland. She blamed the economic downturn and newsstand distribution for the closure. Apparently, the speed of the magazine’s collapse means that the editor, Shawna McCarthy (currently on vacation in Italy), hadn’t been informed yet. One of the downsides, I would think, of the speed of the internet in breaking news…

This news comes shortly after The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction announced they would be moving to bi-monthly publication as a cost-saving measure.

Economic times are hard, for certain. But these magazines have also faced declining newsstand sales and subscriptions for a decade or more. These tough times coupled with the recent US Postal Service price changes mean that the cost of doing business for many small press magazines (which all SF mags are) is just getting too high.

Expect to see more of your favorite SF magazines move to on-line only or risk folding all together.

See the full SF Scope article here.

– S.