Party Talk!

Today we’re diving into that most dangerous of places, the writer’s mind. Tell us, writers, what wanders through your head when you’re alone in your car?

Diana Pharoah Francis
Honestly? I’m usually trying to work out thorny plot problems, or coming up with fun scenarios for characters. Occasionally I’ll think about how I would write somebody else’s stuff differently, or what I’d write next in their worlds. Or if I’m reading a book, what I might write going forward for those characters.

John Hartness
My Golden Globe Acceptance Speech. No, I don’t act anymore, and have never had aspirations to do film.

Faith Hunter
Politics. Which I try to *not* think about because it ticks me off so badly.

Misty Massey
Oh, lord, my mind wanders in wild directions when I drive. I might start with something reasonable, like where I’m headed, but soon I’m distracted by what on earth is that guy in the green minivan doing because clearly he learned to drive in Romania, and move on to a better idea for the turning point event of the story I’m working on, which leads to remembering that I need to pick up milk on the way home, until I get where I’m going and it all goes away again.

Melissa Gilbert
The meaning of life, conversations I wish I’d had (or didn’t have), things I want to do, things I haven’t done.

Gail Z Martin
Usually the next section I need to write for the book

Tamsin Silver
Holy shit…I wonder whose car this is! 😉
When I’m on the train I tend to think about storylines or I’m reading history about dead people…for putting into storylines…

Edmund Schubert
I primarily run quadratic equations in my head when I’m alone in the car. I find them very relaxing. I used to think about String Theory, but I developed a severe allergy to string and it started doing a lot of theoretical sneezing.

Magical Words Link Roundup 2-16-2017

I want someone to write a science fiction novel featuring these people. Because they’re awesome and I need to read about them running the show.

John Joseph Adams’ Nightmare magazine is open to submissions!

Myke Cole wants to talk to you for a moment about fear.

On March 1, the Roald Dahl Literary Estate, Penguin Young Readers, and Warner Bros. Theatre Ventures, alongside Langley Park Productions and Neal Street Productions, are kicking off Roald Dahl’s Imaginormous Challenge, an idea contest that encourages U.S. kids and their teachers not to imagine small, but “imaginormous,” and come up with their most inventive story ideas.

Editors are not as evil as you might think.

How can you ever get writers’ block when there’s history? History is the ultimate reality show. It’s the best gossip in the world.

Before a book is published and released to the public, it’s passed through the hands (and eyes) of many people: an author’s friends and family, an agent and, of course, an editor.
These days, though, a book may get an additional check from an unusual source: a sensitivity reader, a person who, for a nominal fee, will scan the book for racist, sexist or otherwise offensive content.

When the beloved author of one of the world’s most popular book and movie franchises gets on your case, people are going to notice.

Yes, there were black people in the Renaissance.

From the slightly skewed to the utterly bizarre, alternate worlds are a staple of science fiction and fantasy. But as different as these parallel Earths can be, some things remain constant. To whit: there are a disproportionate number of alternate Londons in genre fiction.

For roughly six weeks, Jim C Hines collected data from novelists who had at least one book published prior to 12/31/2016. And now he’s sharing with us.

The book blog tour for Trials and Tribulations, the two Rogue Mage anthologies, begins today!

Tuesday’s Jeopardy game included a category near and dear to all of us – Sci Fi Books. Can you answer all five questions?

Have a taste of the weird west, with Alyssa Wong’s short story, “You’ll Surely Drown Here If You Stay.

Source Code keeps you guessing as to what kind of movie it is until you’re halfway through it, and that is just one of the things that makes it wonderful and heartbreaking.

The Book of Passion, by authors Will Wells and Margherita Tramontano, adds role-playing rules for love and sex to your OGL 3.75 campaign. But they need your help making the project happen!

If you’re coming to Atomacon in November, let’s all go check out the latest steampunk bar, Krazy Owls!

Magical Words Link Roundup 2-15-2017

Fairies might not seem like the first choice when it comes to “most terrifying” creatures in speculative fiction, but consider: vampires and werewolves, while horrifying, are at heart human. Fairies are completely other.

While some science fiction offers terrifying visions of the future, it’s not all foreboding doom and gloom. Some books can be downright hilarious.

The Official Making of Big Trouble in Little China by Tara Bennett and Paul Terry, available now, is a must-read for cult movie fans. Want to know what you might not have known about the movie?

Cracked presents five insane historical theories that actually make sense.

English author Philip Pullman has announced he will soon be releasing a trilogy of new novels set in the same universe as his wildly successful His Dark Materials series.

Wil Wheaton says, “For a few weeks (months?) I’ve been doing this silly and fun thing on Monday nights. I pick a random Choose Your Own Adventure book from my collection, and I read it on my Twitch channel, letting the audience make the choices for me.”

10 greatest horror authors…discovered through Horror Novel Reviews.

How can we take the Trump administration seriously when it can’t even spell good?

Magical Words Link Roundup 2-14-2017

Happy Valentine’s Day! And if you didn’t already know, love can be pretty great, but mostly it’s complicated and gross.

At times of global threat, a team of scholars working to protect the planet from existential threats meet to assess the biggest threats facing Earth and what can be done to save civilization from the impending apocalypse.

Science fiction movies have been fascinated with Mars for decades—giving rise to big-screen portrayals of the Red Planet that are often fantastic, insane, and sometimes ridiculously fun. And so, so wrong.

Jaym Gates is gauging interest in a speculative fiction anthology titled Nevertheless, She Persisted.

The BBC takes a look at early space program history, when the shrinks had some bizarre ideas about what would make a great astronaut.

If you think little old ladies are made of sweetness and light, clearly you never watched even one minute of The Golden Girls.

People, people, people…they said very clearly that we were not supposed to attempt a landing at Europa.

Tell your special someone you love them to the Wall and back with these Game of Thrones Valentine’s cards!

A couple decades and a few art movements down the road from steampunk lies the world of decopunk. Drawing from the sleek, streamlined, futuristic aesthetic of the art deco movement, decopunk takes the glitz and glamor of the Roaring ’20s in science-fictional directions.

Librarians are protesting Trump’s executive orders.

Magical Words Link Roundup 2-9-2017

I’m so proud to share this news!

Anya Martin says, “The easy response is to say horror is especially suited to these times—think of the horror boom which mirrored American hardcore punk in the Reagan ’80s. Or that we need more apocalyptic fiction—make it epic like Stephen King’s The Stand—and more zombies.”

Disney CEO Bob Iger revealed that Pandora: The World of Avatar will open May 27 at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in Orlando, Florida. It, of course, it based on the James Cameron series of films. He also revealed the company plans to open both its yet-to-be-named Star Wars-themed lands at Walt Disney World and Disneyland in 2019.

If you’re on the agent hunt, the Knight Agency is looking for writers!

John Hartness, author, publisher and friend – joins the Guardians of the Geekery to talk about his latest projects and upcoming appearances.

Sue Duff thought it would be easy to destroy Earth. Oh, was she naïve.

Whether you love the original material for nostalgia purposes or for specific qualities that only that adaptation can bring, here are five reboots totally worth checking out.

Sometimes a line comes along that is so cringeworthy you wish it had never assaulted your ears. And yet, you kind of have to show some respect — respect for the person who wrote it and respect for the actor who said it while keeping a straight face.

Ellen Datlow has released a call for submissions for an upcoming volume of the Best Horror of the Year series, to include material published in 2017.

Magical Words Link Roundup 2-8-2017

Cooking the Books podcast welcomes Laura Anne Gilman (The Cold Eye) and Mur Lafferty (Six Wakes) for their first episode of 2017.

I Smell Sheep presents The Story Behind the Story: Shadows in the Water by Kory M. Shrum.

If you’re a book lover, changes are you’re a word lover too – or as it’s known, a logophile.

The Huffington Post asked a range of science fiction authors ― some of them new to the genre, others prolific editors of anthologies ― to discuss speculative or fictional solutions to how climate change is discussed (and in some cases ignored) today.

The Science Fiction and Fantasy Marketing Podcast features Drew Hayes, the author of The Spells, Swords, and Stealth Trilogy, the Super Powereds, and several stand-alone adventures, and host of the Authors & Dragons podcast.

Christopher Robin Milne inspired the young boy of the same name in A A Milne’s iconic children’s stories and, so too did the bucolic setting of the family home serve as the backdrop. The quintessential English country house if there ever was one, is on the market and listed for $3.22M.

The Horror Writers Association is accepting applications for its Scholarship From Hell until March 15. The winner of the scholarship will receive a trip to StokerCon 2017 aboard the Queen Mary in Long Beach, California, and participate in the intensive, hands-on workshop environment of “Horror University.”

Heavens to Murgatroyd! Warner Bros., which owns the entire Hanna-Barbera libary, is rebooting the late-1950s character Snagglepuss as “a gay Southern Gothic playwright.”


Magical Words Link Roundup 2-7-2017

So what can you learn about storytelling through a tabletop game? Lots. Here are 5 things author Andrea Judy learned over the years.

Sometimes you want to read a book that’s like a sumptuous feast, rich and decadent, a lengthy, immersive experience. Sometimes you just want a book that goes down like tossing back a bowl of popcorn, handful after handful, until you’re startled to find it gone.

In the second half of the 1920s, swashbuckler films only got grander and more epic. If you can’t give an audience sound, you might as well give them spectacle, and that’s what filmmakers in America and Europe set out to do.

There are few genres in all of entertainment that are more sculpted by the times they are written in than science fiction.

When it was announced that a Black Lightning television series was in development at Fox with Greg Berlanti producing, fans were excited.

Here’s the Stranger Things season two Super Bowl commercial, which also announced a Halloween premiere.

Amazon has overall product revenues of more than $107 billion and more than 304 million active customer accounts worldwide. But are they playing fair with the average author dreaming of selling a million copies of his or her e-book?

Pulp Modern is a fiction journal that publishes crime, fantasy, science fiction, horror, and westerns. The next reading period is March 1, 2017 to March 10, 2017.

911 Operator: 911—what’s your emergency?
Robert: Hi, I . . . uh . . . I work from home.