Welcome, Samovar!

Samovar is the speculative fiction magazine devoted to translated works. It is hosted by the good folks at Strange Horizons. The first issue was published today and you can read it here. It includes (if I’m getting this right) work in Finnish, Arabic, Chinese and Hebrew, and English translations thereof. The press release says:

What wondrous fantastical tales are being conjured in Finnish? Who writes the best Nigerian space odysseys? Is Mongolia hiding an epic fantasy author waiting to be discovered? We want to know, and we aim to find out.

For Samovar, writers and translators are of equal importance, and we do our best to shine a spotlight on the talented individuals who pen both the original and the translated version of a story. We hope that in this way we can boost the profile of speculative fiction in translation so that everyone involved receives the recognition they deserve and so we can all continue to enjoy the strange, mind-bending and fantastical fiction of all cultures.

Samovar has teamed up with the brilliant folks at Strange Horizons, and will be produced as a quarterly, special imprint of the magazine. A lot of hard work, generous funding and an inordinate quantity of tea (hence the name!) have gone into creating Samovar and we are very excited to finally be releasing our first issue. We hope that you will join us and share in this special moment for both the speculative fiction and translation communities.

In issue one: two sisters create an imagined world where things that are lost can be found. A despot is forced to see the truth he’s tried to hide from. An academic finds poetry, science fiction and reality beginning to merge. And the Curiosity Rover turns its own sardonic gaze on Mars.

Featuring the work of the following talented writers and translators: Lavie Tidhar, Suvi Kauppila, Abdul Wakil Sulamal, James Caron, Ko Hua Chen (陳克華), and Annie Sheng, as well as a review from Rachel Cordasco of Taiyo Fujii’s Orbital Cloud (translated by Timothy Silver).

The Samovar editorial team is Laura Friis, Greg West and Sarah Dodd. Our advisory board includes Helen Marshall, Rachel Cordasco and Marian Via Rivera-Womack. We collaborate with the Reading the Fantastic project at the University of Leeds, and the Anglia Ruskin Centre for Science Fiction and Fantasy.

I am absolutely delighted to see this excellent project finally taking flight. Someone please read it and tell me whether there’s anything Tiptree-worthy in it, because that’s all I have time for right now (except for history books which is another time sink).