There's a new game in town, make that a new sci-fi/fantasy-oriented magazine in town, and I could not be more pleased.
Launched in June 2009 by T.W. Ambrose, Digital Dragon Magazine is a venue in which aspiring, and not so aspiring writers, have the opportunity to showcase their literary talent. Since then, seven editions have been published, one each month. The picture you see is from their December Christmas issue.
Their website is easy enough to navigate, without many bells or whistles that could distract your average visitor. But that is of little consequence since it is all about the stories (I get frustrated pretty quick when I go on sites and have a hard time finding my way around). Of the stories I have read, they have been fun and imaginative, and generally a quick read. On their submissions page it says, "Digital Dragon publishes science fiction and fantasy (including all its sub-genres). The stories we're interested in have a maximum word count of 1500 words. Its not that we don't like longer stories; we just don't like to read them on a computer monitor. Having said that, we also have an interest in publising a couple serials, query if interested. Digital Dragon will consider publishing poetry as well. We will consider all forms, although generally we prefer poems under 50 lines. Just make sure it has elements of science fiction or fantasy."
I also appreciate the fact that this new e-zine is focused on stories that are positive in nature, with an emphasis on moral themes that are consistent with Biblical principles. With so much out there in the world that serves little else except to discourage and demoralize, people need an avenue where there are heroes who exhibit selfless behavior and a clear delineation between right and wrong. It's refreshing to go to a place like that incorporated into its literary DNA, or as their website itself says, "Digital Dragon is a family-friendly, Christian-friendly market. As such, we like stories without excessive or explicit profanity, sexual content, gore, etc. Often these things can be used as a crutch for poor writing. If they are essential to your story then we are probably not the best place to seek publication. Please note, 'family friendly' should not be taken to mean this is a children's publication. It isn't. This is a market developed for intelligent creative teens and adults." Of this last part, I can honestly say this has been the case. The stories showcased have been interesting and insightful, with a little humor thrown in for good measure.
As I previously mentioned, the Digital Dragon website is quite easy to navigate. Their home page showcases the cover art, and all the stories included in that particular issue. All you have to do is click the underlined title, and you are immediately taken to that page. The managing editor, T.W. Ambrose, also has a message he sends out to his readers. There are 7-8 stories included in each edition, one of them being an ongoing serial from Becky Minor. If you've missed reading previous editions, not a problem. Just click the "vault" page and you have a listing of every edition since the magazine's inception.
There is also a "Submit" page (these easy to follow instructions tell you how to send your stories to them), an alphabetical listing of every writer who has had a story published by Digital Dragon, and lastly an "Extras" page. As a way of off-setting their production costs (and an excellent way of promoting Digital Dragon to others), they also sell t-shirts and coffee mugs with their logo stamp on them. The shirts range from $9.99-24.99, and the mugs cost between $11.99-19.99 (depending on the size/kind you want).
If you haven't chanced upon this e-zine yet, I encourage you to do so. They only been around a short while, but have hit the ground running. And if you are feeling bold enough yourself, submit one of your stories or pieces of poetry. A story I had written was included in their 3rd edition, and it was probably the easiest publishing experience I ever had.
If you would like to check out their site for yourself, just go to: http://www.digitaldragonmagazine.net/
If you are curious what others thought about the magazine, you can click the links of other blog tour members on the right.