Wednesday, April 29, 2009

In Suspense No Longer

Interestingly, this is the second time in two years that we’ve announced the demise of the Webzine Crime and Suspense. In July 2007, editor Tony Burton reported that he was folding the publication because he couldn’t convince enough people to pay for subscriptions (at a time when it wasn’t actually necessary to pay if you wanted to read the ’zine online). But just over a week later, Burton decided that C&S wouldn’t die a “quiet death,” after all. Instead, it would change its frequency from monthly to bimonthly, and be available only to subscription buyers.

Somehow, that system worked better. At least until now.

In March of this year, Terry Farley Moran of the blog Women of Mystery brought the news that Burton, who’s also the publisher of Wolfmont Press and Honey Locust Press, had determined that it was “getting too cumbersome” to manage C&S as well as everything else. So he was going to deep-six C&S. But “rather than boo-hoo about the end of a great e-zine,” Moran wrote, Burton was going to “open up Crime and Suspense for all to enjoy” free of charge.

The 33rd issue of Crime and Suspense has just been posted--and it’s the last one, according to an editor’s note by Burton. However, he explains that “I plan to keep the archives and the site up until about the end of the year. After that, I don’t know.” Use this opportunity to go visit C&S. It has hosted a number of innovative short stories, interesting interviews, and insightful book reviews during its more than three years in business. It’s a shame to see it disappear, but not surprising at a time when so many publications are raising white flags over their red ink.

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