Frequently Asked Questions

1. Who or what is Dark Matter Magazine?

Glad you asked. Dark Matter Magazine is a brand new science fiction literary magazine created to showcase authors and artists who create science fiction of a darker, sometimes more irreverent persuasion, which often equates to stories that are thrilling, thoughtful, and just plain fun. The first issue of the magazine is set to publish January 2021. The magazine will publish bi-monthly (meaning every other month) for a total of six (6) issues per year in both Digital and Print formats. Every issue will include at least six (6) short stories (never before published) written by a mix of industry vets and talented newcomers, as well as full color interior artwork or short comics created by a wide variety of artists showcasing different styles. Every story will also be available as a highly polished audible edition that is read and performed by a professional voice-over artist. A post-production team will then add sound effects and a musical score to every audible edition. The Audio Editions can be purchased for download immediately following the story's printed publication.

To read a FREE sample of the short stories feature in our current issue, visit our Current Issue Sample page.

Or listen to a sample of our future audio offerings here.

To see who we've signed for Year One of the magazine, check out our Author Index and our Artist Index over at darkmattermagazine.com. And please note that we pay all our contributors a professional industry rate. This also means that every dollar you spend here will help support independent authors and artists working hard to create the excellent science fiction content you love.

Our business operations are based in Chicago, IL, USA.

2. Okay. So what is Dark Matter Magazine Shop?

That's were you are now. Dark Matter Magazine Shop is the e-commerce division of Dark Matter Magazine. We are owned and operated by the same team. No funny stuff. The shop was created to give you, the consumer, the best shopping experience possible. This way, you can purchase the magazine, listen to audio editions, subscribe, become a member, buy merchandise, or do whatever knowing that all transactions are safe and secure, and that our service is backed by a 100% satisfaction guarantee.

To view our Terms and Conditions, use the following links:

Terms of Service

Privacy Policy

Refund Policy

Shipping Policy

3. Neat. What's the membership program?

Only the best deal ever. Seriously. The Dark Matter Magazine Membership Program is designed to get you the best deals possible on the products that we help create. Starting for just $1 per month, you can enjoy brand new science fiction content whenever or wherever you want, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. On top of that, you will also get 10-20% off all items in the store for as long as you're a member. Premium and Deluxe Members will also get special coupons and offers delivered directly to their email inbox, plus added bonuses like digital downloads of the magazine and audio editions right here on the shop. Customers that choose an annual membership over a monthly membership will get significant discounts on the annual cost of being a member for 12 months.

To purchase a membership, or to learn more, click here.

You do not need a membership to purchase items on our shop.

4. How do I claim my Membership benefits?

To claim your Membership benefits, you just need to be logged into your Dark Matter Magazine Shop account. You will be asked to create an account with a username and password as part of the Membership purchasing process. Once logged in, all items in the store will automatically be discounted to reflect the percent savings associated with your Membership level. The current online issue members-only page will be unlocked. And for Premium and Deluxe Members, items like Digital Downloads and Audio Edition Downloads for the current issue will be free.

5. Cool. How often am I billed?

This is dependent on whether you choose a Monthly or Annual Membership. Monthly Memberships are billed once every month on the same day you signed up. So if you sign up on September 25, you will be billed the monthly fee on the 25th of every month. Annual Memberships are billed once every year on the same date you signed up. So if you sign up on November 3, you will be billed the annual fee every year on November 3. By signing up for a membership, you agree to automatic recurring payments until you cancel your membership with us.

6. Fair. Can I cancel any time?

Absolutely! Annual Members can cancel any time right from their store account page. It's as easy as one click of a button.

Annual Members that cancel before their annual membership expires will continue to enjoy all membership benefits until their current membership expires on their annual membership expiration date (date of initial purchase). Refunds will not be issued for cancelling early.

Monthly Members that cancel will continue to enjoy all membership benefits until their current membership expires the following month. Refunds will not be issued for the month of cancellation.

Dark Matter Magazine Memberships are non-refundable. Please see our Refund Policy for more details.

7. What if I don't want a membership. Do you have basic subscriptions?

Of course! We wouldn't be a real magazine if we didn't offer the option for a basic subscription. In our opinion, Membership is still the better deal, but we've made sure to also structure our subscription model so that it's priced competitively amid the broader market and gives you great value for the price. Subscriptions are only available for digital editions and must be billed up front for the total annual coast of $24.95. By signing up for a subscription, you agree to automatic recurring payments until you cancel your membership with us. Cancel any time using your store account page.

Customers that cancel their subscription before their annual subscription expires will continue to receive the digital edition of the magazine until their subscription expires on their annual expiration date (date of initial purchase). Refunds will not be issued for cancelling early.

Dark Matter Magazine Subscriptions are non-refundable. Please see our Refund Policy for more details.

To purchase a subscription, or to learn more, click here.

NOTE: The Halloween Special is not included in the Digital Subscription, or in any of the Memberships. It is a standalone seventh issue.

8. That all sounds great. Now please tell me about the store. Is all the merchandise on the website made and shipped by Dark Matter Magazine?

All editions of the magazine, which includes digital, print, and audio offerings, are created jointly by Dark Matter Magazine and a contracted manufacturer. These items are packaged and shipped by Dark Matter Magazine Shop or a contracted supplier. The same process applies to all Dark Matter Magazine branded merchandise, including t-shirts, mugs, stickers, and enamel pins. Digital, print, and audible editions of the magazine are non-refundable and not eligible for returns. Dark Matter Magazine branded merchandise is also non-refundable and not eligible for returns. If the product is defective, we will gladly provide a replacement, free of charge.

All merchandise not of the Dark Matter Magazine brand is provided and shipped by third-party suppliers. All items on Dark Matter Magazine Shop are curated by Dark Matter Magazine staff and hand-picked to be part of our collection. Item copy is written by Dark Matter Magazine staff, but item features (which may include sizing charts, product material, product dimensions, etc.) are provided by the supplier. For items purchased from third-party suppliers, please refer to their terms and conditions regarding refunds and returns. This information is usually provided on your purchase confirmation email.

Merchandise from third-party suppliers that is not of the the Dark Matter Magazine brand cannot be shipped to addresses outside the United States. This includes all merchandise in the Unique Sci-Fi Inspired Gifts collection.

9. How quickly will I get the items I order? What will shipping cost me?

NOTE DURING COVID-19: We ship via the United States Postal Service (USPS). Due to the pandemic and other factors, the USPS is currently experiencing some shipping delays. If your package is delayed slightly, we thank you in advance for your patience. Support the USPS. Buy stamps today.

Shipping times depend on where you live, but for all orders, please allow 2-3 business days for processing and 10-15 business days for shipping. International customers outside the United States should allow 15-20 business days for shipping.

For Pre-Orders, please allow the 2-3 business days for processing and 10-15 business days for shipping starting from the date the item goes on sale, NOT starting from the date of pre-order. Items that are available for Pre-Order will have the sale date listed in the item description.

Shipping is charged individually per item and is dependent on the size and weight of the package, the number of items ordered, the item supplier(s), and the location of the ship-to address. Common shipping charges range from $3.99 - $15.98 USD for shipments to addresses inside the United States and $14.99 - $29.99 USD for shipments to addresses worldwide. Shipping costs are calculated at checkout.

10. I see you also have a Rewards Program. What's that all about?

The Dark Matter Magazine Rewards Program allows you to earn points towards certain rewards, like $5 off your next order at Dark Matter Magazine Shop.

There are currently six (6) quick ways to earn Rewards Points with us. To begin earning points, you must first Register for the Rewards Program.

  • Register for the Rewards Program and receive 50 points (registration is free)
  • Follow us on Instagram using the link provided in your Rewards Dashboard and receive 50 points (can only be redeemed once)
  • Tweet about Dark Matter Magazine Shop on Twitter using the link provided in your Rewards Dashboard and receive 25 points (can only be redeemed once)
  • Post about Dark Matter Magazine Shop on Facebook using the link provided in your Rewards Dashboard and receive 25 points (can only be redeemed once)
  • Shop our selection and receive 1 point for every $1.00 USD you spend at Dark Matter Magazine Shop. You do not receive points for Membership or Subscription fees
  • Receive 25 points on your birthday. Just add your birthday to your account profile and get 25 points every year on that day as a gift from us.

For every 100 points you earn, you get $5 to spend on Dark Matter Magazine Shop. So if you sign up for the program and follow us on Instagram using the link in your Rewards Program Dashboard, you will automatically get $5 to spend at our store. This equates to 2% cash back on every purchase (even more if you factor in the points accrued on non-purchases).

Rewards Program dollars can be used with all Membership shop discounts.

To join the Dark Matter Magazine Shop Rewards Program, click on the hot pink button on the bottom right of the shop page that says, "Sign up and earn Points."

11. You said those were six (6) quick ways to earn Rewards Points. Are there other ways to earn?

Yes! You can also earn 50 points by referring a friend to the Rewards Program. Once you register for the Rewards Program, you can send out referral invites to family and friends. Every person you refer will receive $5 off their first purchase of $20 or more at Dark Matter Magazine Shop after joining the Rewards Program. You will receive your points 14 days after the person you referred makes their first $20 purchase on our shop using the referral code provided.

12. What if I'm an incredibly loyal customer? Do I get even MORE Rewards Points?

Yes! Our Rewards Program also has gilded Member Tiers that you can become a part of just by frequently shopping with us. Money spent on Subscription and Membership fees do not count towards the Rewards Program or the Rewards Program Member Tiers.  There are three (3) Rewards Program Member Tiers:

  • Bronze Tier: If you spend $200 on merchandise at our shop within the span of 365 days, you will receive EXTRA 100 Reward Points, which is good for $5 off your next order
  • Silver Tier: If you spend $500 on merchandise at our shop within the span of 365 days, you will receive an EXTRA 250 Reward Points, which is good for $10 off your next order
  • Gold Tier: If you spend $1000 on merchandise at our shop within the span of 365 days, you will receive an EXTRA 500 Reward Points, which is good for $25 off your next order

The Rewards Points awarded for Bronze, Silver, and Gold Tier Rewards Members are in addition to the points earned for each dollar spent to achieve the Tier.

13. I'm picky about print quality. Who prints your magazine?

Are you us? Because we are picky about print quality, too. As book and magazine collectors ourselves, we want only the finest quality. And that's why we at Dark Matter Magazine went with the best print provider for our product: Ingram Content Group. Ingram is an industry-leading print and distribution provider, and we're proud to partner with them.

14. Can I purchase Dark Matter Magazine anywhere else?

Yes. We are working to make sure that Digital Editions of the magazine will be available for individual purchase at all major eBook retailers, including Amazon, Apple, and Barnes and Noble. However, you will always get the best deal on Digital Editions right here on our shop.

Print Editions are limited, but wholesale purchases are available for bookstores that would like to sell the physical copy of the magazine. For wholesale inquiries or for help placing an order, please contact Rob at sales@darkmattermagazine.shop.

15. Sounds amazing. I'm ready to shop.

That's not a question, but hey, we're not going to complain. Have fun browsing our great selection of items. And remember, the best deals come with a Membership!