swan_tower: (Default)

I’ve recently been reminded that the Hugo Awards are test-driving a new category, this one for “Best Series”:

…a multi-volume science fiction or fantasy story, unified by elements such as plot, characters, setting, and presentation, which has appeared in at least three volumes consisting of a total of at least 240,000 words by the close of the calendar year 2016, at least one volume of which was published in 2016.

Because I’d forgotten about this, I didn’t think to mention explicitly in my eligibility post that The Memoirs of Lady Trent qualify: the series is now four books long and roughly 370,000 words, and In the Labyrinth of Drakes came out in 2016.

Although I understand protests about the proliferation of award categories, I have to admit I’m glad to see this one added. A lot of SF/F work is done in series format, and delivering a good series is its own kind of challenge. I can read a bunch of books that aren’t individually the best books of their years, but the work in aggregate winds up being really memorable and satisfying, so I like the notion of having a way to recognize that fact. But I hope the final wording of the category, if it stays in, includes something about how a series that wins becomes ineligible for nomination thereafter; otherwise we may end up with a revolving-door situation where a small number of popular series win over and over again as their new installments come out.

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: (natural history)

Woke up this morning to find out that Sylvie Denis’ translation of A Natural History of Dragons is a finalist for the Prix Imaginales, an award given out at the Imaginales festival in Épinal, France. I’m rubbing shoulders with Sofia Samatar again; as you may recall, her novel A Stranger in Olondria won the World Fantasy Award for Best Novel the year ANHoD was nominated, and now Une histoire naturelle des dragons is up against Un étranger en Olondre. Congratulations also to Cat Valente, whose first Fairyland book is listed in the Youth category!

I can’t remember whether I’ve mentioned this here or not, but: I’ll be at Imaginales this year, over what would be Memorial Day weekend in the U.S. and is just the last weekend in May for everybody else. Furthermore, since I’ll be going to all the trouble of crossing the continental U.S. and then the Atlantic Ocean, I’ll also be doing a signing at Forbidden Planet in London on June 2nd. In between those two things, it looks like I’ll have a couple of days to kill in Basel/Basle/Bâle, so if you know of interesting things to do there, do pass them along! It’ll be my very first time in Switzerland.

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: (Default)

So the Hugo Awards have been handed out, and the result is: fandom as a whole said in almost every instance that it would rather see No Award than a Puppy candidate win. I’ve heard the factoid bandied about that No Award has been given five times in the previous history of the Hugos; this Worldcon added five more to that total, in Novella, Short Story, Related Work, and both Editor categories, all of which contained no candidates not from one or both slates.

I’m okay with this, and in fact I’m one of the people who voted No Award with a liberal hand. I did this primarily as a way of registering my opposition to slate tactics (regardless of who uses them); in most cases, though, it was also an accurate reflection of my feelings on the nominees. In the work categories (as opposed to the personal categories) in particular, the items on offer were just . . . not that good. The best of them was moderately entertaining, but not, in my opinion, Hugo-worthy. Did the fact that they came from slates incline me to look more critically than I might have otherwise? Perhaps. But I’ll note that I also voted No Award in a category that wasn’t all Puppies, because I honestly didn’t think there was anything on the ballot, Puppy or otherwise, that really deserved the rocket.

Of course some of the Puppies are declaring victory, because they set this up as a situation where any outcome could be spun as a win. Their candidates win? Victory! Proof that there’s a cabal that has been unfairly locking Their People out, and the voters really just want good old fashioned fun! Their candidates don’t win? Victory! Proof that there’s a cabal which is unfairly locking Their People out, just like the Puppies have claimed!

Quite apart from the risibility of the entire “cabal” notion in the first place, I think there are two key items which undercut that narrative. The first is the success of Guardians of the Galaxy, which (if you look at the raw numbers) almost certainly would have gotten on the ballot anyway without Puppy support, and which held a commanding lead over all of its competitors through all passes of voting. In other words: people are happy to vote for good old fashioned fun, when they think it’s good. The second is the success of The Three-Body Problem, which several Puppy standard-bearers said they would totally have put on the slate if they’d thought of it in time. Again: evidence that people are not a priori conspiring against the kind of books Puppies like, just because of politics. Good books will win out, where “good” is defined as “sufficiently pleasing to a sufficiently large percentage of Hugo voters, according to whatever complicated set of criteria each voter uses to judge whether they are pleased.”

I want to make special note of three people: Larry Correia, Marko Kloos, and Matthew David Surridge. All of them were on the slates; all of them withdrew from the ballot early enough that the next item up could be added in their place. Correia’s withdrawal added The Goblin Emperor, which ran a close second to The Three-Body Problem in the voting stages. Kloos’ withdrawal added The Three-Body Problem itself — the book that ultimately won. The same goes for Matthew David Surridge and Best Fan Writer, putting Mixon (the eventual victor) on the ballot. I think it says quite a bit about the effect of the slates on nominations that the works they initially crowded out did so well when it came time to actually vote, and I want to thank all three of those men for withdrawing.

Going forward? Well, I haven’t heard yet whether the “E Pluribus Hugo” proposal fared well during the business meeting; I hope it did. I have heard rumors that next year’s Official Puppy Organizer intends to approach it more as a recommended reading list than a slate; I hope that pans out as described. In the meanwhile, I’m trying to keep track of things (and read more widely) for nominations next time around. I will be paying particular attention to those individuals from the slates whose work struck me as worthy in its own right, and nominating them for 2016 if they keep it up. It’s my way of compensating for all my No Award rankings this year: a small thing, maybe, but better than nothing.

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: (*writing)

I’ve accepted that I will probably not make it through all the Hugo reading before it’s time to vote. Uff da — what would I do in a normal year, when there aren’t chunks of the ballot that I’ve ruled out entirely? I have no idea. As it stands, I already kind of resent the amount of time I’ve spent reading things that aren’t what I would have chosen if left to my own devices. Possibly this means I am just not good Hugo voter material.

But anyway! I figure that before I make my (extremely belated) post about what I read in June, I should make a post about what I’ve read out of the Hugo packet. Not so much because I’m campaigning for people to vote in a particular way — rather, I want to work through my reactions to things, and my first attempt at thinking through “do I consider this to be Hugo-worthy material?”

If you need to refresh your memory on my personal Hugo reading rules, do so now. I did indeed end up reading some of the Puppy candidates, though I did not finish them all. I’m skipping over the Dramatic Presentations and the artists in this post.

Read the rest of this entry  )

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: (*writing)

Now that I’m back from tour, I’m downloading the Hugo Voters Packet and embarking upon a read of its contents.

. . . some of them, anyway. I’ve laid down a set of rules to guide me in deciding where to spend my time and energy. In the interests of full disclosure, I’m listing them here — but please do not take this as anything other than my rules for the process. Nobody is obligated to copy my example. In fact, the only universal rule for Hugo-Packet Reading I would support is one that says, read it any damn way you want. I spent a while this weekend reassuring somebody who had been told repeatedly that she absolutely had to read everything in the packet, no matter what, which simply is. not. true. As you will see from my own rules:

  1. I will at least look at everything that was not on a slate. (Time permitting.)
  2. I will not look at anything published by Castalia House. I am not obligated to give Theodore Beale and his cronies any real estate in my brain.
  3. Ditto the piece from Patriarchy Press. The name, coupled with everything I’ve heard about the work in question, tells me enough to make that decision right now.
  4. Other slate-based nominees may get a look from me, depending on how much time I have to spare.
  5. If any nominated work, from a slate or not, doesn’t hook me, then I’m not obligated to finish it. If I have to use the leverage of “but it was nominated for a Hugo!” to motivate myself to read the whole thing, then clearly I don’t like it enough to rank it very highly anyway.

Since I’ve said it in a few places, I should add: my own way of handling the problem of slate-based nominees who might have gotten there under their own steam is to keep an eye on them for next year. My supporting membership gives me the right to nominate for 2016; if I like a slate candidate’s work here, I’ll give them high consideration for a nomination next time around. It’s the best balance I can personally find between not rewarding slate tactics, and not punishing those who didn’t sign on for this train wreck.

And where countering slate tactics is concerned: there is quite a good proposal here for altering the Hugo nomination process in a way that will counteract that problem, without too much in the way of negative consequences. Scroll down for the plain-language version and the FAQ — that’s the post where they’re trying to work out the official language — but the short form is, it’s a way to make nominations work kind of like voting does right now. Nominate as many works as you like; as the lowest-ranking candidates are eliminated, their support gets reallocated to other works on the nominator’s ballot. It minimizes the power of bloc voting, without punishing works or individuals who also have strong support outside of the bloc, and it does all of this without disenfranchising anybody — which is the major flaw of many proposals, e.g. the ones that say you should have to buy a full attending membership to nominate or vote. I haven’t followed the entire technical discussion of voting systems that led to them choosing this one, because that discussion is enormous and full of math I can’t follow . . . but it looks good to me. I hope it can get enough support to pass.

Now if you’ll pardon me, I have some stuff to read.

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: (natural history)

It’s come to my attention that A Natural History of Dragons is on the longlist for the David Gemmell Legend Award. Now, that is a very long longlist; there are forty-three other books on it. But still! Yay!

The Legend Award is bestowed by popular vote, so you can head on over there and register your opinion right now, if you so choose. Voting remains open until May 15th, and then once the shortlist is generated, there will be a second round. While you are there, you can also vote for the Morningstar Award (fantasy debut) and the Ravenheart Award (fantasy cover art — no, Todd Lockwood was not nominated, alas).

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: (*writing)

Quick synopsis, for those not already aware: this year, Brad Torgersen organized the third iteration of the “Sad Puppy+” slate for the Hugo Awards, which, at least on the surface, was about campaigning to get conservative SF/F authors on the ballot (giving them the place they have been denied by their political opponents). Unabashed racist/sexist/homophobic bigot Theodore Beale/VD++ apparently also decided to organize a “Rabid Puppy” slate, on similar principles, only more so.

Between them, these two initiatives managed to have a huge influence on this year’s Hugo nominations, dominating the short lists for many categories. (Here’s a rundown on what they achieved.) This was met with a great deal of dismay in many corners of fandom.

We all caught up?

+No, I don’t know how that term came to be attached to this. If you know, please enlighten me in the comments.

++I find his chosen moniker sufficiently arrogant that I decline to oblige him by using it.

***

I’ve felt for years now that the Hugos are a thing I should maybe be more involved in. Two things have stopped me: first, you have to pay for a Worldcon membership in order to nominate or vote, and even a supporting membership is a non-trivial expense, at $40. Second, my reading is very disorganized; much of what I read in any given year was actually published long before, meaning I’m not very au courant with the stuff that’s eligible for awards. This latter point makes nominations in particular quite daunting, because there’s a whole swath of stuff to choose from, and I haven’t read most of it.

This year, for the first time, I’ve bought a supporting membership so I can vote on the Hugo Awards. I’d like to talk about why, and what exactly I intend to do with my vote.

Cut for discussion of details. )

As always, the question is: what now?

There are a lot of proposals to change the Hugo rules in ways that will prevent, or at least discourage, this sort of behavior in the future. Going that route will be hard, though, for two reasons: first, it’s a minimum of two years to introduce any changes to the Hugo procedures (because of Worldcon’s bylaws), and second, many of the proposed changes would disenfranchise a lot of voters who have been participating in good faith. (A fact which, fortunately, I have seen many people point out. The problem is known, and I devoutly hope it won’t be accepted as the price of doing business.)

In the short term, and quite possibly the long one, the better answer is social rather than legislative.

As I said, I’ve bought a supporting membership; if you have $40 to spare and the inclination to officially register your displeasure with this situation, you can do the same. (This also, by the way, gives you the right to nominate candidates for next year’s Hugos — and, as a special bonus, the right to vote on the upcoming Worldcon bids! Look for another post later about the Helsinki bid and why I think people should support it; that’s enough of a digression I don’t want to go into it here.)

What’s the best way to use your vote? Well, the Hugos use an interesting system: instant runoff voting. This is a system built to discourage the triumph of small but dedicated voting blocs over the general sentiment of the electorate as a whole; it means the winner is likely to be a candidate most people thought was pretty good, rather than one a few people adored and a bunch of other people hated.

The Hugos also have “No Award” in every category. When you rank this on your ballot, you are saying that you would rather see no award given in that category at all, if the alternative is to see it go to one of the works you have ranked lower (or left off your ballot entirely: for a cogent explanation of the different effects between those two, see here.) This has happened before, though not recently; the last time No Award won, it was 1977.

I stand with those who say, the problem here is the entire “slate” approach: even if the slate consisted of works I like, I have a profound objection to the entire notion of organized campaigns of followers nominating and voting for the candidates their leaders have selected. That isn’t what the Hugos are for, and if five years down the road we have the Sad Puppy Slate competing against the Social Justice Slate competing against the Can’t We All Just Have Fun Slate, I will consider that a disaster for the Hugos, no matter what I think of the works on the slates themselves.

One way to speak out against the slate approach is to use IRV and the No Award option to register your disapproval. There is a Puppy-free list of candidates here (and if you needed a visual demonstration of how thoroughly they dominated certain categories, there you go). Rank non-Puppy candidates as you feel they deserve; when you’ve run out of candidates you think might be worthy of the rocket, rank No Award. Then rank everything else — Puppy candidates, and anything non-Puppy you thought really was just utter crap — below No Award, or leave it off your ballot entirely.

In other words: say you would rather see no prize given than these tactics rewarded.

This may mean voting against some works you’d ordinarily support. In the case of Dramatic Presentation (Long), for example, maybe you really enjoyed Guardians of the Galaxy or The LEGO Movie. But voting for them says, “well, I don’t like slates, but I guess they’re okay so long as they pick things I agree with.” That encourages us to form competing slates in future years, which is precisely what many of us are trying to prevent. If you think it would be wrong to give the rocket to Edge of Tomorrow or The Winter Soldier, then rank No Award first — that’s your decision. But please, don’t support the slate.

Because fundamentally, the slate approach is fundamentally not about fannishness or enjoyment of books. It’s about making sure your side wins. And in this case, it’s also about hurting people who have until now been nominating and voting for works they love, and stroking the egos of a few individuals who have felt disenfranchised by the fact that the Hugo electorate doesn’t like their stuff. (It is not even about supporting the kind of SF they claim to like: both Cixin Liu’s The Three-Body Problem and the second volume of Patterson’s Heinlein biography are right up their alley, and several SP/RP types, including both Larry Correia and Beale/VD, have commented that they probably would have supported those. So even their side gets hurt by this, as the decisions of the ringleaders locked out things their followers genuinely enjoyed and might have wanted to vote for.) It is about championing bigots like Beale/VD and John C. Wright. This is, in short, a move undertaken explicitly to upset and drive away people like me and many of my friends.

I will not be driven away. And I will not reward their efforts.

Is it idealistic to believe the Hugos should be about nominating books you, personally, enjoyed? Maybe. But I will do what I can to support that ideal.

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: (*writing)

It’s that time of year, when authors round up what they did in the previous year for your consideration in awards.

Novel-wise, I had The Tropic of Serpents, the second of the Memoirs of Lady Trent. It made NPR’s “best of” list, in three different categories: Science Fiction Fantasy, Science and Society, and It’s All Geek to Me. The third book in the series is coming out in March — which is irrelevant to awards for 2014, but may be of interest to you all in other respects. :-)

Short fiction, I had four pieces:

“Mad Maudlin on Tor.com (read it online)

“Centuries of Kings” in Neverland’s Library, ed. Rebecca Lovatt and Roger Bellini

“Daughter of Necessity on Tor.com (read it online)

“The Damnation of St. Teresa of Avila” in Shared Nightmares, ed. Steve Diamond

The latter three are short stories, while the first one is a novelette, as such things get counted.

I also published Monstrous Beauty, but that’s a reprint collection of previously published work, so it isn’t eligible for anything that I’m aware of.

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: (Default)

No, I didn’t win Best Novel. That went to Sofia Samatar, who is richly deserving.

There’s a part of me that had mixed feelings about the prospect of winning the award — not because of anything against the World Fantasy Award in and of itself, but because of the thing that signifies the award: a Gahan Wilson sculpture of the head of H.P. Lovecraft. For starters, he isn’t who I think of when you say “fantasy;” I associate him much more with horror. For another — with all due respect to Mr. Wilson — I find the visual aesthetic of the thing seriously unappealing. But most of all, it’s really kind of offensive.

H.P. Lovecraft was an influential writer: no doubt about that. But he was also a deeply unpleasant person in exactly the ways that we as a genre are trying to get past.

I know there are people who want to keep the award’s design as it is. All the arguments I’ve heard from that side have amounted to “tradition” or “fondness” or something else in that vein. I’ve yet to hear anyone say that people will be hurt by changing the design. But right now, people are being hurt by not changing it. To the point where Sofia Samatar felt obliged to mention this problem in her acceptance speech.

I have a hard time seeing why tradition or fondness should outweigh that.

Had I gotten the award, I would have crossed my fingers that I could say I had received the very last head of H.P. Lovecraft ever handed out as a World Fantasy Award. Honestly, that might be too ambitious of a time-scale; I don’t know whether the WFS could get through the design and production process quickly enough to have it be different for next year. But one of my friends pointed out that they could unveil the new design at next year’s con, and that would make me very happy.

What should it be instead? People have floated lots of suggestions, ranging from the heads of other writers to various symbolic objects. Me, I say throw the doors open: let the community submit designs. We have a wealth of excellent artists among us; let them exercise their collective creativity, let the membership vote to select a shortlist, and then the board can choose the final design. Or make a board shortlist, and the membership votes on the final design. Or whatever. Something that makes the an exciting opportunity for the community, a positive to counteract the negative of the current controversy.

There was a poll at this year’s con, completely informal, to see whether it should be changed. I’m glad to see the WFS taking notice of the issue; I hope we see them take action soon.

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: (Default)

I have a surprisingly busy weekend ahead of me. My official obligations are as follows:

  • Thursday, 8-8:30 p.m., Regency E&F, Opening Ceremonies. In which I go play the role of World Fantasy Award nominee!
  • Thursday, 8:30 p.m. onward, Ice Cream Social. Okay, this isn’t official as such, but it’s basically the Opening Ceremonies afterparty.
  • Friday, 11-12 p.m., Independence B, Geography and Fantasy. A panel on the ways in which fantasy gets tied in with the landscape (especially cities). I’m on this with Robert Redick, Joshua Palmatier, Max Gladstone, and Siobhan Carroll; that last is a) a friend of mine and b) armed with Actual Scholarly Knowledge on this subject, so it promises to be a pretty awesome panel.
  • Saturday, 8-9 p.m., Washington, The Myriad Faces of Dragons. Naomi Novik is on this panel. How could I pass up the chance to be on it with her?
  • Saturday, 9-10 p.m., Arlington, Book View Cafe group reading. There’s a bunch of us, so it’s going to be a rapid fusillade of storybits!
  • Sunday, 1 p.m. onward, Regency E&F, Awards Banquet. In which I go play the role of extremely nervous World Fantasy Award nominee!

And that’s not counting the various lunches, dinners, meet-up-for-coffees, launch parties, and friends’ readings I have penciled in. The good news is that my mornings are more or less free; the bad news is that, uh, pretty much nothing else is. O_O

But I can’t complain. Every bit of this is something I’m looking forward to!

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: (natural history)

So I’d been having a less than stellar day, mostly on account of the fact that I’m leaving for Okinawa next week and don’t feel remotely ready and this fact is making me stressed. I was out getting take-out and running Okinawa-related errands this evening when I checked my phone and saw that hey, Mike mentioned me in a TwHOLY CRAP I’VE BEEN NOMINATED FOR A WORLD FANTASY AWARD.

You guys.

I am on a shortlist with Neil Gaiman, Gene Wolfe, Sofia Samatar, Helene Wecker, and Richard Bowes.

I . . . have still not wrapped my brain around this fact.

For crying out loud, it’s the World Fantasy Award. It’s one of the biggest awards in SF/F, alongside the Hugo and the Nebula — and if I’m being honest, it’s the one I have lusted after the most since I started publishing. The Hugos and the Nebulas cover speculative fiction as a whole, but the World Fantasy Award is for fantasy, and although stories of mine have been published as horror, fantasy is fundamentally My Genre. To see A Natural History of Dragons on the list of nominees is nothing short of gobsmacking. Like, I’m half-afraid to hit “publish” on this post because what if I’ve imagined the whole thing? (The couple dozen congratulatory tweets and emails and such argue otherwise, but y’know, paranoia knoweth few boundaries.)

I was already planning to go to World Fantasy this fall; now I guess I should plan on going to the banquet, too? And get something interesting to wear to it. Not that I expect to win — and that isn’t just modesty talking; it’s my admiration for my fellow nominees. But hey, let the record show I have promised my husband that, should I win, he has my permission to get me drunk. Which is a thing that hasn’t happened in the nearly thirty-four years of my life, so the promise is a non-trivial thing.

And what will I do between now and the con? I will write another book. Because being an author is like enlightmentment: Before nomination, chop wood, write book. After nomination, chop wood, write book. I don’t have any wood or an axe, so I guess I need to focus on the writing.

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: (natural history)

His cover for A Natural History of Dragons is one of the finalists for the Chesley Award, in the category of “Best Cover Illustration — Hardback Book.”

I feel a bit proprietary about this, of course, because the book in question is mine. Furthermore, I had input with Tor about the cover design; I had suggested a skeletal diagram of a dragon, while my editor was thinking of more of a life drawing, and the two concepts got hybridized to produce the final cover. But the cover itself is Todd’s work, and the nomination is richly deserved. Fingers crossed for him to win!

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: (Default)

‘Tis the season — the season in which every writer-blog you read features a list of what that writer published in the previous year, in case you’re looking to nominate things for awards. :-)

I had a book. You may have noticed me talking about it once or twice. :-P A Natural History of Dragons feels like forever ago, since I’m nearing the end of a draft of #3 in that series, but it was in fact just last year.

I also had two short stories, both courtesy of Mike Allen’s editorial efforts:

“The Wives of Paris,” which was in Mythic Delirium and can be read in its entirety at that link, and

“What Still Abides,” which was in Clockwork Phoenix 4 and has gotten a surprising amount of praise. (I guess there’s a bigger audience for stories written in Anglish than I expected.)

Not a vast quantity, but I’m quite pleased with all three.

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: (natural history)
You know how I said that A Natural History of Dragons was in the semifinal round for the Goodreads Choice Awards?

Apparently it wasn't in the first round. It was, instead, one of the top five write-in candidates during the first round, and thus got added for the semifinal.

That? Is really cool. I don't know how the write-in votes stacked up against the ones cast for first-round nominees, but the fact that people remembered it well enough to vote for it off their own bat is very flattering.

I think voting ends tomorrow, so if you want to cast your vote, you still can.

In other news, I was trying to make a paper shell for my inflatable globe so that I could finally work out where all the continents are in Isabella's world, when it occurred to me that what I really needed was a spherical whiteboard. So there's a white beachball that should be arriving here in the next few days, and I'll be putting the water-soluble markers we bought for drawing on the D&D battle map to an exciting new use. :-)
swan_tower: (*writing)
It's taken me about a week to regenerate much brain, with most of what I could spare going to working on the next of the Memoirs. But I have some now, and so you get a news batch!

First of all, A Natural History of Dragons is in the semifinal round for Best Fantasy of 2013 over on Goodreads. I'm not saying you should go vote for it or anything. I'm just, y'know, mentioning.

you should totally go vote for it

Next up, Book View Café has a fun new anthology out: Mad Science Café. This debuted while I was out of the country, so I'm a bit behind the curve in announcing it, but it's pretty much what the title would lead you to expect, i.e. lots of stories about Science Gone Wrong (Or Very, Very Right). It reprints my story "Comparison of Efficacy Rates for Seven Antipathetics As Employed Against Lycanthropes," aka the Werewolf Fake Academic Paper story, so if you missed it when it first came out in Ekaterina Sedia's Running with the Pack, here's your chance!

I'm also in another anthology! Apex Magazine has put out The Book of Apex: Volume 4, which collects fifteen issues' worth of the magazine, including my own "Waiting for Beauty." That one's available in print as well as electronic formats.

Speaking of anthologies (no, we're not done yet), there's an excerpt from "Centuries of Kings" up at Bookworm Blues. Because I was out of the country when that went up, the Kickstarter linked is over and done with (after successfully raising its target and more). But still, you can get a taster of the story, which will be in Neverland's Library.

And finally, not about me: Mike Allen ([profile] time_shark), editor, poet, and fiction writer, has a novel out! The Black Fire Concerto, about which people have said many good things. It has a blurb from Tanith Lee! "A prize for the multitude of fans who relish strong Grand Guignol with their sword and sorcery." Mike is, of course, the fellow who has brought you all four Clockwork Phoenix anthologies, not to mention Mythic Delirium and other such projects. If you dig horror, you should definitely check this out.

. . . did I mention that A Natural History of Dragons is up for a vote? ^_^
swan_tower: (With Fate Conspire)
I was supposed to sit on this a while longer, but somebody apparently jumped the gun, so now I'm allowed to tell.

Romantic Times (which covers a great many things besides romance) is holding its Reviewers' Choice Awards, and With Fate Conspire has been nominated! In, er, the "Epic Fantasy" category, which is not what I would have expected -- but hey, I'm in good company:

THE WISE MAN’S FEAR Patrick Rothfuss, DAW, (March 2011)
WITH FATE CONSPIRE Marie Brennan, TOR, (September 2011)
THE COLD COMMANDS Richard K. Morgan, DEL REY, (October 2011)
THE KINGDOM OF GODS N.K. Jemisin, ORBIT, (November 2011)
STANDS A SHADOW Col Buchanan, TOR, (November 2011)

I won't know the results until April. In the meantime, congrats to my fellow nominees, and to all the other nominated authors.
swan_tower: (*writing)
If you're a Hugo or Nebula voter, here's what I published in 2010:

Novel
A Star Shall Fall

Novelette
"And Blow Them at the Moon," Beneath Ceaseless Skies #50

Short stories
“Comparison of Efficacy Rates for Seven Antipathetics as Employed Against Lycanthropes,” Running With the Pack, ed. Ekaterina Sedia
“Remembering Light,” Beneath Ceaseless Skies #44
“The Gospel of Nachash,” Clockwork Phoenix 3, ed. Mike Allen
“The Last Wendy,” On Spec #81
“Footprints,” Shroud Magazine #9

. . . I need to get back on the short story wagon, or I'll have very little to list for 2011.

We now return you to a more interesting corner of the Internet.
swan_tower: (Default)
I've done another reading for Podcastle: "Väinämöinen and the Singing Fish," by Marissa Lingen ([livejournal.com profile] mrissa). My apologies to both Marissa and my erstwhile Finnish teacher for any mispronunciations I may have committed in the course of recording that story.

(This is what I get for telling the Podcastle editors what foreign languages I'd studied. Though in checking that e-mail, I see I didn't even mention the Finnish, because I only studied it for only two weeks. I hope they never find out about my two weeks of Navajo . . . .)

Also, it turns out that both "Once a Goddess" and "Letter Found in a Chest Belonging to the Marquis de Montseraille Following the Death of That Worthy Individual" got Honorable Mentions from Gardner Dozois in the most recent Year's Best Science Fiction. Given that I only had seven stories out last year, I'm pretty pleased with that average.
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I didn't realize the transition to the new Nebula rules means stuff published after July 1st of last year is still eligible, so my list also includes "Kingspeaker" and "A Heretic by Degrees." (Possibly also "A Mask of Flesh," but it's right on the borderline, so I'm thinking no.) You can read or hear the first, and hear the second, in their entirety; details at those links.
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If you're eligible to nominate for the Nebulas, you might be interested in an offer from Mike Allen, editor of Clockwork Phoenix 2: he'll provide a PDF review copy to any SFWA member who wants to give the anthology a look. (Details about halfway through that entry.)

That antho, of course, has my story "Once a Goddess," which has been getting some very pleasing attention in reviews. Other stories of mine out this year are:



Those first two and "Waking" are free to read in their entirety online; click through to find the links on their respective pages. Also, of course, I had a novel on the shelves this year.

Here endeth the obligatory Nebula-eligibility post.

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