OMNI Magazine, for those not familiar with it, was a futurist-themed magazine published from 1978 to 1995. OMNI was, without a question, one of the hallmarks of my childhood. My dad started picking up issues now and again sometime around 1985, when I was about six years old. I remember thumbing through the magazines eagerly, admiring the bizarre and fantastical pictures and asking my dad to explain some of the loftier articles to me.
My dad kept many of his issues of OMNI and eventually gave them to me. I am eternally grateful for that, because OMNI was one of the influences that led me toward the writing craft. Looking back, I can see how the tastes of OMNI's editors had a profound effect on my own fiction preferences and storytelling style. For those who don't know, pretty much all of the stories are either straight science fiction or some other type of speculative fiction (including a ton of dystopias and alternate histories, which are my favorite, plus a dash of horror, mystery, and plain old weirdness).
I've been wishing for about 20 years that I could go back and re-read all of those classic issues. I still have a stack of mags from the mid-90's, by which time I had my own subscription, but all of those much-loved 80's issues, the ones that were most critical to me, are long lost.
Well, now my dream has come true! Archive.org has almost the entire run of OMNI available to read and download on their site. There are still a couple of issues missing, but it doesn't look like that will be the case for long.
Here are recommendations for just a few of my most favorite stories, all of which are available in the archive:
"Some of My Best Friends are Americans" by Francois Camoin (May 1980)
"Listening to Brahms" by Suzy McKee Charnas (September1986)
"The Evening the Morning and the Night" by Octavia E. Butler (May 1987)
"Forever Yours, Anna" by Kate Wilhelm (July 1987)
"The Legless A" by Patricia Highsmith (April 1988)
"In a World Like This" by Kancy Kress (October 1988)
"The New Floor" by KW Jeter (October 1988)
"His Powder'd Wig, His Crown of Thornes" by Marc Laidlaw (September 1989)
"Kool King" by John Skipp & Craig Spector (April 1990)
"In the Country of Tattooed Men" by Garry Kilworth (September 1990)
"Tower of Babylon" by Ted Chiang (November 1990)
"The Preservation of Lindy" by Samuel Delaney (May 1992)
"The Einstein Express" by John Kessel (December 1993)
Check them out!!!
OMNI Magazine at Archive.org