So where do SF people hide online?

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This topic contains 7 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Patrick Mahon 5 years, 7 months ago.

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    David Brzeski

    There’s little, or no chat or book promotion on this forum.
    SF groups on Facebook have very low memberships.

    I’m told all the networking is done on WordPress blogs these days, so where are the good blogs for promotion, reviews & discussion of SF books?


    Patrick Mahon

    Very good question, David. Quite a few of those who are active in the BSFA run their own blogs – see their names and details on the front page of the website. Another active site that is closely related to the BSFA is the Torque Control blog at , which includes a good list of other relevant blogs if you go a long way down on the column on the right hand side.

    There used to be quite a lot of book chat on this Forum, some time ago, but since the Forum was redesigned all those old posts seem to have disappeared into the ether, unfortunately.

    Do you have a current book you’d like to talk about? Perhaps we could start up a discussion between us, and see if anyone else joins in…

    Cheers, Patrick.


    Steve Jeffery

    Hi David, Patrick
    Patrick’s right. I just came back here after a long gap to find the site and forum totally redesigned, and a lot of the old book discussion posts gone.
    There used to be quite few discussion forums for sf and fantasy. As Patrick says, Torque Control used to be a key one, but even that seems to be less frequently updated since Niall stepped down as Vector editor. However it does have an impressive, even rather overwhelming, list of links to other sites and blogs.
    I have to confess that I’m still a dead tree addict, so most of the reviews I read are in magazines like the BSFA’s Vector, Locus or fanzines such as Steam Engine Time and Science Fiction Commentary (both these last available via or apas.
    There used to be an online fantasy group called Wonderlands, but that folded a while back.
    You could also try the web sites for NewCon Press and Angry Robot and the writers’ group The Write Fantastic (don’t know the adresses offhand, but should be findable via Google).

    It would be good to start up a discussion group here, but previous experience suggests that after a while the posts become too unstructured to find anything unless we have a helpful administrator to impose some sort of order and tidy up from time (and a good keyword search tool)




    David, I’m rather shy and so hide behind the settee while peeping at the forums. Also last time I promoted my SF book – Exit, Pursued by a Bee – I, along with Alyson Byrd, was shot down for spamming. I just thought I was letting folk know so they could choose, but hey ho. I’ll be more discreet when ARIA: Left Luggage comes out. Both books were critiqued in the BSFA own Orbiter groups so they have a provenance here.
    Is it okay, David, to promo our stuff now?


    David Brzeski

    I don’t know why you’d ask me. I’m just a newbie member who has been disappointed to find, on joining the BFSA, that the website has little new material posted & the forum is all but dead. Not to mention that it’s a horrible design, which makes it difficult to navigate easily.

    I sympathise with people when they complain that a forum has degraded into nothing but spam, but if nothing else is being posted anyway then what’s the point. The problem is, I’m guessing, that very few people even check the forum anymore, let alone post (spam, or otherwise) & it’s going to be an uphill climb to kickstart it back into action.

    I came to the BFSA from the British Fantasy Society, which has a regularly updated website, with news & reviews & a reasonably active forum. By comparison, all this society seems to offer is the regular print publications (their obvious worth & quality notwithstanding) which is something the BFS also offers of course.

    Of course, it’s easy to gripe about how things are run & then sit back & wait for someone else to change things I know. Somehow, I just expected more when i joined. It strikes me as strange that a Science Fiction based society should offer so little on the web.



    Ah, sorry, I should have realized you were a newbie. As for your comments I think many will sympathise. Many of us, too, are in the BFS – go to FantasyCon – and are all pals together. I admit to not coming here very often – then I charge around replying to posts, then forget again. Tut tut. I’d hate for this forum to vanish. I suppose facebook is part of the problem / solution with the BSFA page there.


    Chris James

    I agree with both of you – with the explosion of social networking it’s impossible to keep up with everything and to remember the rules on each site, e.g. you can spam away (er, sorry, “promote”) on Twitter and FB but when you go to forums, each has its own rules and the regulars are usually easily upset.
    Problem is, it’s very difficult to spend a lot of time getting to know people in one forum before they’ll accept you enough to let you promote your books – you’d need 72 hours in each day!


    Patrick Mahon

    David – I agree with your comments about the problems with the site. It’s been a long-running issue, both in terms of getting people to post and in terms of accessibility. I’ve been trying to drive some traffic here from the BSFA’s Facebook page and via Twitter, but I’m afraid it’s a bit of an uphill battle. Nonetheless, I’ll keep plugging at it, and see if we can get some activity going here again. So thanks very much to you, Geoff and Chris for posting – much appreciated. Please do feel free to start other threads too, so we can get more discussions running in parallel.

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