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British Fantasy Society => BFS Publications => Topic started by: Peter Coleborn on February 14, 2013, 11:57:39 am

Title: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Peter Coleborn on February 14, 2013, 11:57:39 am
It's an attractive book, once again -- congratulations all round. Just one thing about the design: please make the gutter margin bigger. I'm worried that I'll crease the spine if I open the pages to make reading easier.

Sorry to hear that both Guy and Cavan are going. Good luck to you both -- and best of British to the newcomers.

I've just read David Tellerman's article on violence in fantasy fiction. It's an interesting read and one that should make writers of the stuff pause for thought. We don't need yet more Conans. However, it would've been a stronger, more useful article if the writer had mentioned examples other than his own novels. Off the top of my head I suggest the Fafhrd & Grey Mouser stories, Jack Vance's Dying Earth, Tanith Lee, Andre Norton's Witch World ...
 
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Dave Brzeski on February 14, 2013, 05:27:42 pm
Agreed on the gutter margin. This issue is quite hard to read, as the text runs too close to the spine.

What happened to the kindle versions? I haven't got one of the previous issue yet, let alone this one.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: cavscott on February 19, 2013, 09:36:49 am
Hi there,

Sorry there has been a hiatus in doing the e-versions. Unfortunately, this has been down to a time factor in getting them done. I'll get on to them as soon as the day (and night) job allows.

In the meantime, is there any one who would be willing to format the ebooks of the journal in the future?

All the best,

Cav

Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Rolnikov on February 25, 2013, 08:55:57 am
I would love to offer, but I'd have to turn down paying work to do it. Straightforward chunks of fiction like Full Fathom Forty don't take long (I'll do the ebook of that if someone sends me the typeset files), but the variety of content types in the journal would take longer.

With this issue being so late and another two more editors quitting, would it make sense to make the journal a bit more achievable? For example making it shorter (the old journals aimed for 80pp, with Prism only another 40pp or so), or less regular - it's effectively been a six-monthly publication for the last year. Give ourselves an easier win.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Paul Campbell on March 07, 2013, 07:01:49 am
Still haven't received my copy yet  :( Emailed a few folk, but haven't got a reply (although, not sure who you're supposed to contact for non-delivery of publications). Member # 1700.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: John L Probert on March 07, 2013, 03:51:36 pm
No sign of our copy either, and I also have no idea who to contact about it! Member 001354
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Rolnikov on March 07, 2013, 04:50:33 pm
Paul, John - neither of you are on my list of BFS voters for the awards, so I'd guess your memberships have expired and need renewing. Any queries you're probably best off emailing Lee (chair@britishfantasysociety.org) and Helen (secretary@britishfantasysociety.org). Hope that helps a bit.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: John L Probert on March 07, 2013, 05:12:12 pm
Well my membership expired a week ago & I've just renewed, but it was certainly in effect when that edition was produced and sent out!
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: John L Probert on March 07, 2013, 05:35:47 pm
Plus, Kate & I should be on your list of voters anyway because we were both at FantasyCon last year. We've already sent in our votes.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: John L Probert on March 07, 2013, 05:40:30 pm
And finally - thank you!

(How to spread one post over three demonstrated here  ;) )
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Rolnikov on March 07, 2013, 06:01:00 pm
Best contact Lee and Helen... I think the list of BFS voters was produced for me round about Feb 5, and that was just a bit after the mailing list was produced for the printers.

You are eligible to vote from being at FantasyCon, but that's handled separately from the BFS list. I check BFS members off against my list as I go along, but send FantasyCon a list of any of their voters that need checking at the end. Most I can usually check off from memory and the website's guest list.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Paul Campbell on March 08, 2013, 09:27:51 am
Renewed my membership 6 weeks ago; got an email thanking me for doing so, too.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Debbie on March 09, 2013, 05:37:06 pm
I thought it was an excellent journal. It looks superb.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Allen on March 10, 2013, 11:34:15 am
I agree with you, Debbie. Of course, I’m slightly biased as I chose the three competition winning stories. However, I thought that there was a good range of non-fiction articles and interviews as well. I think the move some time ago to amalgamate “Prism”, “Dark Horizons” and “New Horizons” has worked well, especially now that the many reviews are in their own dedicated space in “Shelflings”.
The guttering was a bit tight at times but otherwise, a fine issue.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Paul Campbell on March 14, 2013, 04:29:38 pm
Lee got back to me a week ago, saying he'd make sure I received a copy. But nothing's arrived so far  :( Time's running out: come Wednesday I'm going to have to file a PayPal claim as that will be the end of my 45 day limit.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Rolnikov on March 15, 2013, 08:35:23 am
He doesn't send them out himself, so, if you haven't already, be sure to let him know so he can chase it up for you.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Des Lewis on March 15, 2013, 09:00:15 am
I have just set up a page for my real-time review of the fiction and poems in the BFS JOURNAL Winter 2012 / 2013:
http://dflewisreviews.wordpress.com/2013/03/15/bfs-journal-winter-2012-2013/

[My previous reviews of BFS Journals: http://nullimmortalis.wordpress.com/2011/01/21/bfs-journal-winter-2010-my-real-time-review/
http://nullimmortalis.wordpress.com/2012/04/29/bfs-journal-spring-2012/]
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Paul Campbell on March 15, 2013, 04:42:45 pm
He doesn't send them out himself, so, if you haven't already, be sure to let him know so he can chase it up for you.

No, I didn't imagine for a moment that he did... but, um, why tell the likes of myself and John Probert  here on the forum to contact Lee in the first place? And why, then, would Lee say he'd make sure a copy got to me if it's nothing to do with him? No, Steve: I've emailed four people plus three posts on the forum. I think that's more than enough. Come Wednesday I'm filing a claim. PayPal can deal with it.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Rolnikov on March 15, 2013, 05:29:25 pm
No, I didn't imagine for a moment that he did... but, um, why tell the likes of myself and John Probert here on the forum to contact Lee in the first place?

Sorry if I'm misunderstanding your question, but I said to contact him because he's in charge and would be able to ask the right people to sort it out.

And why, then, would Lee say he'd make sure a copy got to me if it's nothing to do with him?

I didn't say it's nothing to do with him - my point was just that if he's asked someone else to do it, he won't necessarily know if they haven't, and could chase it up for you.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Paul Campbell on March 20, 2013, 08:42:15 am
Well, still nothing  :( Filed a claim this morning with PayPal and this is what I said:

Quote
Hi guys, I haven’t received any publications from the Society since last summer and as I’ve now reached the limit in which I can file a claim with PayPal I’ve had no choice but to do so. I’ve emailed the Journal Editor and the Stockholder. No reply. Posted 3 times on the forum where the Awards Administrator suggested I contact the Secretary and the Chair. The Chair replied immediately saying they’d make sure a copy got to me. Still nothing has arrived. Was told I didn’t receive the latest copy of the Journal because my membership was expired, but that makes no sense: I was reminded in January via email that my membership was due to expire at the end of February, so when the mailing list went to the printers at the end of January I should have still been on it. More importantly, though, the Society emailed everyone last September saying that because there was no publication that quarter they were going to extend everyone’s membership to include the next publication. The Winter 2012/2013 edition of the BFS Journal is that next publication, meaning I have already paid for it with my previous membership fee. So even if I had decided that this year I wasn’t going to renew my membership I should still have received a copy of the latest edition of the Journal, otherwise extending my membership was an empty gesture as I never received anything during those extra 3 months. In other words, all I’ve gotten for my previous £35 is 3 issues of the Journal. The Journal’s nice, guys, but not worth £11.67 each.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Peter Coleborn on March 21, 2013, 09:29:43 am
Paul -- a sad situation and one that could've been avoided quickly and easily if they had mailed out the journal to you when they said they would. All this is not a good advert for the BFS.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: CarolineC on March 21, 2013, 12:16:04 pm
Paul -- a sad situation and one that could've been avoided quickly and easily if they had mailed out the journal to you when they said they would. All this is not a good advert for the BFS.

Agreed, Peter, it doesn't look good. I've heard discontent elsewhere too. And, personally, I don't think I'll renew my membership when it comes due next time - there just doesn't seem to be any benefit to it (for me as a fan - maybe there is a benefit for writers, editors and publishers?).

I know it's difficult for volunteer committee members when they have other things going on - work, home life, etc. Heck, I spent a year as news editor and had to give up because I felt I couldn't give the role the attention it deserved due to other aspects of my life. But I really do think the committee needs to get a grip on things like this. Perhaps more volunteers are needed? But without communication between the committee and the membership we'll never know ...  :(
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: David A. Riley on March 21, 2013, 12:25:24 pm
Paul -- a sad situation and one that could've been avoided quickly and easily if they had mailed out the journal to you when they said they would. All this is not a good advert for the BFS.

Agreed, Peter, it doesn't look good. I've heard discontent elsewhere too. And, personally, I don't think I'll renew my membership when it comes due next time - there just doesn't seem to be any benefit to it (for me as a fan - maybe there is a benefit for writers, editors and publishers?).

I know it's difficult for volunteer committee members when they have other things going on - work, home life, etc. Heck, I spent a year as news editor and had to give up because I felt I couldn't give the role the attention it deserved due to other aspects of my life. But I really do think the committee needs to get a grip on things like this. Perhaps more volunteers are needed? But without communication between the committee and the membership we'll never know ...  :(

I miss the days when the chairman (and other committee members) of the BFS would regularly come on the forum and keep members updated on what was going on. David Howe kept a constant presence here and responded to comments and complaints. BFS periodicals during Stephen Theaker's acting chairmanship and on throughout David's came out regularly and as near as damn it on time. And the membership grew to an all-time high. It would be interesting to find out just how much of this has been retained and, hopefully, built upon, though I have a nagging feeling that the latter is a bit of a forlorn hope.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Paul Campbell on March 22, 2013, 08:22:14 am
Just received an issue of the Journal in the post. The Autumn 2012 edition, that is. The same one that I received at the end of last summer. I know I said I'd only received 3 issues of the Journal for my previous membership fee, and I guess technically you could say that I've now received 4 - but, er, I wasn't planning on 2 of them being a duplicate  ???

No note inside the envelope, so no idea who sent it. Underneath my address, and printed in brackets, it says 'Pre-March Journal'. Yeah, very pre-March!  ::)

I fully appreciate that the Society is voluntarily run (I've volunteered myself at many of my first FantasyCons before my wife Audrey started attending cons with me) and that we've all got full time jobs, but £35 is £35: I hadn't planned on it being a charitable donation. 2 days since my PayPal claim was filed. No reply. I've got until the beginning of April, PayPal instructs me, and then I'll need to escalate the dispute if I still want a refund.

It used to be that Special Pubilcations were the norm: it's been 2 years since the last one (the 40th Anniversary anthology) and even then that was diligently put together by one man in 6 months who was subsequently embarrassed out of the Society for the crime of being naive. Between September 2006 (when I became a member) and September 2011 there were 7 Special Publications (8 if you include the In Conversation horror interview book which could be purchased outwith your membership). Those Special Publications added a great deal of extra value for money for your membership fee and thus worth while taking one out. But now, paying £35 for just the Journal itself... ?

Every time the Journal does come out there's a change of personnel, reflecting just how squeezed for time the Society is during this 5 year global recession. Other than organizing FantasyCon once a year I just don't see the Society being able to do much else in the future, and the Journals I think will eventually peter out. Lee's a lovely man, but he's full time editor of the Angry Robot imprint, as well as editor of the Hub ezine. Just how much longer will it be before Lee, too, has to bow out from Chair duties due to work commitments?

Hey, talking of lovely guys, is Stephen Theaker still there?! Do me a favour mate, willya? Blag a copy of the Winter 2012/2013 BFS Journal and bring it with you to World Fantasy Convention - looks like the only way I'm gonna get a bleeding copy of the damn thing!  ;)
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Peter Coleborn on March 22, 2013, 08:34:18 am
Paul, there is no reason why you should chase up this issue by contacting individuals -- after all, you've had a response from the Chair already. But have you contacted the stockholder?

stockholder@britishfantasysociety.org

There have always been hiccups in the BFS -- delays, missed posts, etc. It's just a pity that now when we have "instant" communications these things aren't dealt with promptly.


Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Rolnikov on March 22, 2013, 10:25:59 am
I'm always here, Paul. ALWAYS. It's a sickness. I won't be at WFC, but I'll put a copy of the latest journal in the post to you if you email me your address.

Sorry I haven't commented on what you've said, but it's a good example of why I work on Shelflings rather than the journal. If someone needs a back issue of Shelflings I can just email it to them...

Like you say, members are willing to accept that we are a bit useless and bumbling and understaffed and might take a while to sort things out, but get frustrated when emails aren't even acknowledged.

One idea I've floated is of having a single customer service email, rather than sending members from pillar to post, someone who could pass queries on to the right people and then escalate them to the chair if they haven't been resolved.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Des Lewis on March 22, 2013, 10:52:54 am
One idea I've floated is of having a single customer service email, rather than sending members from pillar to post, someone who could pass queries on to the right people and then escalate them to the chair if they haven't been resolved.

A great idea.
I might have volunteered for this post, but I'm currently running down my activities in the late Autumn of my days!
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Paul Campbell on March 23, 2013, 06:23:24 am
Paul, there is no reason why you should chase up this issue by contacting individuals -- after all, you've had a response from the Chair already. But have you contacted the stockholder?

stockholder@britishfantasysociety.org

There have always been hiccups in the BFS -- delays, missed posts, etc. It's just a pity that now when we have "instant" communications these things aren't dealt with promptly.


Hi Peter! If you look again at my PayPal message claim you'll see that the second person I emailed was the stockholder. No reply.

Woke up this morning to a message from PayPal saying the dispute was now closed as I've been credited a full refund. Fine. But no personal message from the BFS -

- and, remember, that refund was for my membership renewal, covering the Spring 2013 BFS Journal onwards. It doesn't address the fact that I have already paid for the Winter 2012/13 BFS Journal with my previous £35 membership fee!

So that's it then, is it?! No personal message from the BFS? So, in other words, yes Paul you were a mug because for your previous £35 membership fee all you got were 3 issues of the Journal. Which works out at £11.67 each. The Journals are 200 pages each. I could buy a 600 page Robinson Mammoth title for £8 - but I've just paid £35 for 600 pages. Not impressed.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Peter Coleborn on March 23, 2013, 02:01:41 pm
Paul, even if yours is the only problem about a missing BFS Journal, the fact that it hasn't been resolved is not a good advert for the BFS. Any prospective member seeing your posts on this thread and the poor response from the society is going to think again about joining.

I know that the society is run by volunteers and that they have real jobs to do -- I did it myself for many years so I know the demands on one's time -- but it isn't that difficult to sort out a simple problem like a missing publication. This is all very depressing.





Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: David A. Riley on March 24, 2013, 08:56:26 am
Paul, even if yours is the only problem about a missing BFS Journal, the fact that it hasn't been resolved is not a good advert for the BFS. Any prospective member seeing your posts on this thread and the poor response from the society is going to think again about joining.

I know that the society is run by volunteers and that they have real jobs to do -- I did it myself for many years so I know the demands on one's time -- but it isn't that difficult to sort out a simple problem like a missing publication. This is all very depressing.







And I cannot believe that since this issue was first raised over two weeks ago no senior member of the BFS committee has responded with an explanation or apology.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Rolnikov on March 27, 2013, 08:52:47 am
They probably haven't noticed the thread, David. If I see a problem mentioned here (or on Twitter or Facebook) and no one's replied I'll usually email the relevant person, but Paul's in touch with them already so I haven't done that this time.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: David A. Riley on March 27, 2013, 09:42:58 am
They probably haven't noticed the thread, David. If I see a problem mentioned here (or on Twitter or Facebook) and no one's replied I'll usually email the relevant person, but Paul's in touch with them already so I haven't done that this time.

You're undoubtedly right, Stephen. You usually are. :)

I miss the days when you were acting chair. You might have been a bit of a pain in the arse for those of us involved with publications then, but that was part of your job, making sure you kept us on our toes and the jobs got done properly. Plus you were always here to help settle any queries, problems and and issues raised by concerned members on the forum. I do think the BFS needs this kind of hands on involvement from the top. David Howe (another pain in the arse at times for those of us involved with the publications) did this too when he was chair - and the BFS benefited, seeing its membership rise to an all out high.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Peter Coleborn on March 27, 2013, 11:27:16 am
I suspect both David and Stephen will say that I was also a pain in the arse  ;D
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Rolnikov on March 27, 2013, 03:14:23 pm
Don't forget that when I was posting here about things when I was chair, it was usually because I was also the person doing the job - FantasyCon secretary, awards admin, short story comp, Dark Horizons, etc! It's not really the chair's job to answer questions about each aspect of the society, I think, it's the person who has taken on that job.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: CarolineC on March 27, 2013, 04:58:58 pm
Don't forget that when I was posting here about things when I was chair, it was usually because I was also the person doing the job - FantasyCon secretary, awards admin, short story comp, Dark Horizons, etc! It's not really the chair's job to answer questions about each aspect of the society, I think, it's the person who has taken on that job.

Agreed. But the problem is, Stephen, you seem to be the only person on the committee who IS dealing with issues (or that's the way it seems from the lack of communication and issues which seem to be arising).  :(

(sorry, but I'm rather disillusioned about the BFS currently)
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: John L Probert on April 04, 2013, 08:27:41 pm
A month has gone by and nothing in response to my queries having paid £45 in membership fees for myself and Kate, and received nothing in return, not even an acknowledgement. This is very bad indeed. BFS you're looking at me taking my money back very shortly even though I've been a member for eight years
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: CarolineC on April 04, 2013, 09:52:42 pm
Have you emailed anyone, John? As has been said on this thread, many members of the committee don't see posts on this forum (personally, I reckon they should check in regularly and respond, but they don't). If you've emailed someone and not got a response, then perhaps try emailing Lee direct? (chair@britishfantasysociety.org) As a few of us have said here already, this is a bad state of affairs and does the BFS no good at all.  :(

Hope you can sort it.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: John L Probert on April 05, 2013, 07:23:26 am
Thanks Caroline. I've emailed Lee and I might have a word with the president ;)  before getting a refund.
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Debbie on April 08, 2013, 04:33:19 pm
chair@ isn't answering my email. I'm *still* getting bank stuff for FCon, despite leaving the committee in December 2011 (and no, that isn't a typo - that's well over a year). I'm about to go into the bank and insist they take my details off everything - not sure what will happen then ...
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Peter Coleborn on April 08, 2013, 04:58:36 pm
chair@ isn't answering my email. I'm *still* getting bank stuff for FCon, despite leaving the committee in December 2011 (and no, that isn't a typo - that's well over a year). I'm about to go into the bank and insist they take my details off everything - not sure what will happen then ...

I *think* my name has been removed from the account. If not I can see a nice holiday coming  ;)
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Rolnikov on April 08, 2013, 04:58:58 pm
As a last resort, please do try Ramsey as president, and he'll bang our heads together...
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: Peter Coleborn on April 08, 2013, 05:04:27 pm
Out of interest, who is stocking the recent issues? Is it still Chris Teague? Has the problem of missing Journals become worse since they are mailed out directly by the printers?
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: DavidJHowe on April 08, 2013, 07:15:11 pm
chair@ isn't answering my email. I'm *still* getting bank stuff for FCon, despite leaving the committee in December 2011 (and no, that isn't a typo - that's well over a year). I'm about to go into the bank and insist they take my details off everything - not sure what will happen then ...
I initialled some forms at the recent SciFi Weekender (March 2013) for Lee ... apparently the Bank hadn't processed any of the paperwork or something. But I'm still getting and forwarding on occasional letters from the bank. I was removed from the committee in Sept 2011. I still get sent letters from the printers for the BFS which I forward on as well ... I assume someone is dealing with them. 
Title: Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
Post by: John L Probert on April 12, 2013, 10:13:19 am
I have just received my copy of the Winter 2012 / 13 BFS Journal - many thanks to Lee Harris for sorting this out!