Celebrating its Eighth Anniversary Through Utopias

Alex de Borba

Alex de Borba

From a modest beginning, when the medium was founded eight years ago, we established a tradition in which each monthly issue opened with an editorial. To begin with, these editorials were always written by myself but, after a while, we decided to abandon the idea because although editorials were appropriate in a newspaper, they were less appropriate in a medium such as ours.

The last editorial appeared on June 1st, 2018, titled ‘Educating Toward a Culture of Open Access Without Fear’, and although we do not wish to go back on this decision, the eighth anniversary of this medium is a special occasion, and we think it is appropriate to reflect on what we have achieved and to outline our plans for the future.

The medium was established on October 1st, 2010, with the aim of publishing musical articles dealing with alternative styles from a comparative, international and theoretical point of view. It did not publish single-country news, live reports or opinion articles and these continue to be the largest category of contributions submitted to the medium that is still taken into significant consideration, however, no longer on a predominant basis.

Over the years, the medium’s digital initiatives have kept pace with the shifting landscape of alternative publishing, heralding its entry into the printing and the expeditious dissemination of our carefully curated content worldwide as we started publishing articles daily, reflecting the surge in academic output across disciplines and enabling readers to keep up with historical developments through our digital publication process.

Thus, the medium was now moving into the fast lane and also becoming an international breathing ground for the weird, surreal and arcane within different aesthetics forms of art. Notwithstanding, it was not until last year that the medium could reliably pass into the fast lane with the introduction of online submissions, which allowed more rapid manuscript assessment, peer review, and early publication online shortly after acceptance.

The medium has recently adopted a broad definition of alternative subcultures and, in addition to articles on different cultural designs, it has sought to be inter-disciplinary and has published articles from all the main disciplines dealing with horror studies, social taboos, mythology and history, occultism and religion, literature, practices, deviances, popular culture among others.

Our original remit above seems to have worked well, and we do not see any need to revise it, mostly because reactions to individual articles and the medium as a whole have always been very positive. The standard of the articles we have published has been high, and the medium has helped to raise the profile of horror studies (to name one) as a fruitful area for study.

Yet, while in the fast lane, we must not forget that any medium such as this must be relevant to its readership; thus, the role of the editors is to ensure that every article contains something of interest to the global readership. With this in mind, our strategy is to publish both translational, scientific and historical research papers and include educational content that has long-term relevance and impact.

More than four hundred fifteen contributors have published articles or reviews in the medium, and that is no mean achievement the medium has over the years, sought to include live reviews of quintessential events as soon as possible after proofreading. Until about two years ago, this task was undertaken, somewhat erratically, by two editors. We would be delighted to receive suggestions of live events for review and offers to sponsor events from readers of the medium.

As an international medium publishing in English, we have always sought to achieve a high standard of written English in the articles we publish. Since many of the contributors to the medium do not have English as their first language, this can be, and sometimes is, a time-consuming task. The medium is fortunate to have had a series of excellent editorial assistants, all of whom have worked closely with one of the editors in preparing articles for publication. We are very grateful to them.

Furthermore, the medium believes that fostering connections with networks of existing researchers and policymakers is mutually advantageous, but also recognises that we need the alternative lifestyle community to acknowledge the value of the cultural mediums and support them actively by sending them the very best papers.

Truth be told, our eighth anniversary has provided us with an opportunity to renew and refresh the membership of our editorial board. We say farewell and thank you to many stalwart members, who have supported the medium for many years, and welcome various new members in return.

As we have already said, we do not intend to resume our old tradition of writing editorials — the next editorial may well not appear until our ninth anniversary. The success of any medium depends on the quality and quantity of the articles it publishes, which are, in turn, a function of the quality and quantity of the articles that are submitted to it. We are no exception and the best way to ensure the continuing health and well-being of the medium is to submit articles for our consideration. The more articles we receive, the merrier we shall be.

The medium has been a kaleidoscopic mirror of the remarkable eerie, sustaining such a strong position today because of the vision and dedication of its editors and contributors, and we will strive to continue their excellent work to maintain the medium’s international success as the premier medium of the genre.

We would like you all to raise your glasses to Atmostfear Entertainment on its eighth anniversary, celebrating its splendid achievements in that time and wishing it as much success in the next eight years to follow.

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