Starburst (magazine)

Starburst is a British science fiction magazine published by Starburst Publishing Limited. The magazine is published monthly, with additional news and reviews being published daily on the website.

EditorJordan Royce
CategoriesScience fiction
First issue1 November 1977 (1977-11-01)
CompanyStarburst Magazine Limited
CountryUnited Kingdom
Based inManchester


Starburst was launched in December 1977 by editor Dez Skinn with his own company Starburst Publishing Ltd. The name Starburst was settled on after rejecting other names, including Starfall, as Skinn considered it too negative.[1] Starburst was then purchased by Marvel for publication of issue 4 onwards, as part of deal whereby Skinn was put in charge of the UK comic reprints division.

Marvel eventually put the title up for sale and it was bought by Visual Imagination and published by them from issue 88 (1985).[2]

Starburst's review sections were edited by writers and reviewers such as Alan Jones (films) and David J. Howe (books), and, for several years, the magazine also carried a column by the writer John Brosnan. Its television review column, "TV Zone", was used as the title of its sister publication TV Zone.

The magazine's publication was put on hold due to Visual Imagination folding in early 2009, having reached issue #365. An online only version of the magazine existed following this closure. It returned to print by Starburst Magazine Ltd in February 2012 with issue #374.


Over its history, Starburst has been edited by the following people:

  • Dez Skinn - 1977-1981
  • Alan McKenzie - 1981-1985
  • Cefn Ridout - 1985
  • Stephen Payne - 1985-1999
  • David Richardson - 1999-2001
  • Andrew Cartmel - 2001
  • Gary Gillatt - 2001-2002
  • Stephen Payne - 2002
  • Simon J Gerard - 2003-2005
  • Stephen Payne - 2005-2009
  • Jordan Royce - 2011–present


In early 2011 Starburst Magazine Ltd announced that Starburst would resume publication as an online magazine. Original creator Dez Skinn is the Honorary Editor-In-Chief. The first online issue (#366) was released on 14 May 2011, and carried an editorial by Dez Skinn.[1] It is now based in Manchester, England. Starburst re-entered print publication in February 2012 with issue 374.


Starburst celebrated its 40-year anniversary with issue 443. The issue included an editorial by creator Dez Skinn.

Starburst Radio

On 19 March 2011 Starburst magazine presented its first weekly radio show on Manchester Radio Online.[3] The show has since moved to Fab Radio International.[4]

Starburst Podcasts

Starburst Magazine also has the following Podcasts available from iTunes:

  • Starburst Radio Podcast - The podcast of the Official Starburst Radio Show presented by Martin Unsworth, Kris Heys and Mike Royce.
  • The Blue Box Podcast - The Starburst Doctor Who podcast presented by JR Southall.
  • Brave New Words - The Starburst Book and Graphic Novel podcast presented by Ed Fortune, the magazine's current literary editor.
  • TV Zone Plus - The podcast of the TV Zone column, presented by TV Zone columnist, Paul Mount.

Starburst International Film Festival

From 26–28 August 2016 the first Starburst International Film Festival was held at Manchester Metropolitan Students Union Complex. Guests included Dez Skinn, Doug Naylor, Steve Pemberton, Toby Whithouse. The festival culminated in the Starburst Fantasy Awards 2016 on Sunday 28 August 2016 in which Doug Naylor won the Hall of Fame Award.

Starburst MediaCity Festival

With a sponsorship deal secured with MediaCityUK the second annual festival was slightly re-branded. Starburst MediaCity Festival was held From 16–17 March 2018. Guests included Dez Skinn, Tom Paton. Winners of the STARBURST Fantasy Awards 2018 included Emma Dark for Best Director with Salient Minus Ten, and Michael Melski for Best Feature with The Child Remains.


Starburst contains news, interviews, features and reviews of genre material in various media, including TV, film, soundtracks, multimedia, comics, books. Paul Mount has resumed his "TV Zone" column[5] Jordan Royce has taken over the "It's Only a Movie" column previously penned by the late John Brosnan,[6] and the assistant editor, Martin Unsworth hosts the popular "Horror Obscura" column. Ed Fortune is the current literary editor, resuming the role previously left by David J. Howe.


  1. "In Praise Of Peter Beale". Retrieved 23 June 2017.
  3. "Manchester Radio Online".
  4. "FAB Radio International". FAB Radio International. Retrieved 23 June 2017.
  5. "TV Zone - By veteran Paul Mount". Retrieved 23 June 2017.
  6. "It's Only A Movie - by Jordan Royce". Retrieved 23 June 2017.
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