Rebecca Roanhorse Celebrates the Launch of Trail of Lightning with a Reading and Q&A

Sunday, July 1st, 2018 | Posted by Emily Mah

Rebecca Roanhorse-smallTrail of Lightning-smallNebula Award winning author Rebecca Roanhorse released her first novel this week.

Trail of Lightning takes place on the Navajo reservation, where Roanhorse lived with her extended family (she, herself, is Ohkay Owingeh and African American). Environmental apocalypse has drowned most of the rest of the world, but the Navajo reservation — now called Dinétah — survived with some supernatural help. The Sixth World has dawned, bringing back the gods and monsters of old.

Main character, Maggie Hoskie, isn’t sure whether or not she’s a monster herself, but she excels at hunting them. When a new kind of horror starts abducting and killing innocent people, only Maggie, with the help of an unconventional (and rather attractive) medicine man named Kai, can hope to stop it; but can she defeat this great evil before it destroys what’s left of the world or will her own demons consume her first?

I had the privilege of facilitating a Q&A session with Roanhorse at the Jean-Cocteau Cinema on the day of her book launch. During the hour-long session, she read excerpts from her book and took audience questions about her work and process.

The video below is a record of that evening — unedited for the most part. The only parts it lacks are the signing session and the amazing cake that Roanhorse brought to celebrate.

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Wrestling with Genre: Robert V. S. Redick on Master Assassins

Friday, May 25th, 2018 | Posted by C.S.E. Cooney

The Red Wolf Conspiracy-small

AN INTRODUCTION

I think I stumbled on my first Robert V. S. Redick book in the Westerly Public Library. Oh, those Halcyon days where I wandered at whim through the SFF stacks, idly selecting titles and reading first pages. If they happened to catch my interest, well then! Together we went to the Self-Checkout, and thence for home — and blissful, blissful book-chomping time.

Is this how Red Wolf Conspiracy came to my hand? I seem to remember thinking, for whatever reason: “Probably not for me!”… and then, like two seconds later, it’s dawn of the third day, and my eyeballs are twitching, and I’ve just finished it.

At which point, knowing me, I probably friended him on Facebook.

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The Poison Apple: What do The Watchmen, Sandman, Frankenstein, Dracula, H.P. Lovecraft and Sherlock Holmes have in Common?

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2018 | Posted by Elizabeth Crowens

Leslie Klinger in Sherlock mode

Leslie Klinger in Sherlock mode

An Interview with Leslie S. Klinger

Crowens: What drew you to the Victorian era? That seems to be the common thread for most of your books except for your annotated graphic novels.

Klinger: When I was young, I was a big science fiction reader. In my second year of law school, my girlfriend bought me a copy of the William S. Baring-Gould Annotated Sherlock Holmes. I was hooked. Like most people, I probably read one or two stories as a kid, paid little attention to them, and wasn’t really interested in mysteries. Then I started reading this, and I enjoyed the footnotes — the idea that there was this scholarship. One of my responses to the Baring-Gould edition was a weird one: Some day when I’m old and retired, maybe I’ll be the person who will update it. I became immersed and decided I was going to become a Sherlockian.

In 1976, there was a classified ad in the Baker Street Journal placed by somebody selling his collection of 300 books, a real collection, not like the junk I’d been buying. It was very expensive… like thirty-five hundred dollars. I talked it over with my wife. For that time that was a lot of money. She said, “You’re the kind of person who should be a collector. Go for it.”

Suddenly I had the core of a really good collection and became known in some small circles as a nut about Sherlock Holmes. I started giving talks about Sherlock Holmes, and I got invited to a dinner at the BSI back in 70s. It was one of those bucket list things where I never thought about it again. In 1995 a friend arranged for another invitation. I went to the dinner, and I haven’t missed one since then.

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Goth Chick News: 13 Questions for Misty Keasler, Creator of Haunt

Thursday, May 17th, 2018 | Posted by Sue Granquist

Misty Keasler Haunt-small

Our annual road trip to the Haunted Association and Attractions Show this year yielded some very unique finds, not the least of which being the photo-journal / coffee table book Haunt, created by photographer Misty Keasler.

Ms. Keasler toured and photographed professional haunted attractions across American and her work was recently the subject of an entire exhibit at the Modern Museum in Fort Worth, TX. Haunt includes 104 photographs many of which are unpopulated “scenes” from some of the season’s most famous attractions. Who would put these rooms together this way? Who makes up the market for such places, paying to be scared? And what does this say about American culture?

As you can imagine, we were just dying to find out so Misty, meet everyone – everyone, meet photo journalist extraordinaire, Misty Keasler.

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Tripping on the Void: An Interview with Plaid Klaus of Image’s Void Trip

Saturday, May 12th, 2018 | Posted by Derek Kunsken

Void Trip 1 alternate-small

This May, Image Comics will be collecting the five issues of Void Trip, by Ryan O’Sullivan and Plaid Klaus. I took advantage of the chance to interview Plaid. Here’s the description for Void Trip:

Meet Ana and Gabe — the last two humans left alive in the galaxy. They’re low on fuel, they’re low on food, and they’re low on psychedelic space froot, but they’re still determined to make it to the promised land: hippy-paradise super-planet Euphoria. VOID TRIP is the story of their journey, the friends and enemies they made along the way, and how the universe responded to those who dared to live freely within it. “VOID TRIP aims to answer the question: ‘how can we be free in a universe that will always course-correct to limit us?’” said O’Sullivan. “This isn’t your typical adventure comic, with violence as the solution to every conflict. It’s a road trip story. Its main concern is exploring the human condition. It’s Jack Kerouac and Hunter S. Thompson meets Herman Melville and Cormac McCarthy. Expect laughter, tears, and existential dread in equal measure.”

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Backstory Cards: for Roleplayers, Writers, and Game-Runners

Friday, April 20th, 2018 | Posted by C.S.E. Cooney

Tim

So, our friend Tim Rodriguez came by our home a few weeks back when we were hosting a game-night. We’d thrown the doors open to a bunch of game-lovers of our acquaintance for a night of food and play, and they flocked in with their favorite games (Wari, or Oware, being the game that got the most giggles) and some very fine (I was told) single malt whiskey. (Or maybe it was double-barreled? Something. I don’t know; I was too busy making lasagna.)

Anyway, Tim brought some new Backstory Cards to playtest. Most of us (including me) who volunteered to playtest with him hadn’t role-played in, well, ever. Or at least for years, the fog of memory obscuring most of the details.

. . . But since we were just testing the cards for story-potential and not playing an actual game, it seemed to work out well enough, and pretty soon we were all, like, a gaggle of giant fungal glow-in-the-dark monster crabs running around ravaged urban landscapes bringing down mobsters. You know. Like you do.

And sometime in all the chaos, Tim may have mentioned something about a new Kickstarter project.

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Fire Dance: An Interview with Ilana C. Myer

Thursday, April 12th, 2018 | Posted by Managing Editor Howard Andrew Jones

Last-Song-Before-Night-small Fire Dance Ilana C Myer-small

At GenCon in 2017 I met the brilliant and engaging writer Ilana C. Myer. I soon discovered that her first book, Last Song Before Night, was as brilliant and engaging as its creator; it was one  of the finest modern fantasy novels I’ve read in years. I’ve eagerly been awaiting its sequel, Fire Dance. It was just released this week, but it’s already receiving accolades. Kirkus gave it a starred review, and it was chosen by the Washington Post, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble as one of the best SFF releases of the month.

More people need to know about Myer and her work, so I invited her to Black Gate to answer a few questions and convince you to start reading her. You can find our conversation below.

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Nazis and Superheroes Warring in the Shadows: An Interview with Kay Kenyon

Tuesday, March 20th, 2018 | Posted by John ONeill

At the Table of Wolves Kay Kenyon-small Serpent in the Heather-small

The Dark Talents novels by Kay Kenyon

I was lucky enough to hear Kay Kenyon read from her novel At the Table of Wolves in 2016, and I was immediately captivated. Her tale of a young English woman with superhuman abilities in the late 1930s who is drawn into the world of intelligence services warring in the shadows — and who stumbles on a chilling Nazi plan to invade England, utilizing their own superhuman agents — was one of my favorite novels last year. I jumped at the chance to interview Kay for Black Gate last week; the transcript of our conversation is below.

The next book in the series, Serpent in the Heather, arrives in hardcover on April 10th, and Saga Press is offering a Goodreads Giveaway which runs until March 27. Check it out here!

Kay, thanks so much for joining us! I first became acquainted with your work through your marvelous standalone SF novels from Bantam Spectra beginning in the late 90s, like The Seeds of Time, Rift, and Maximum Ice, which was nominated for the Philip K. Dick Award. More recently you’ve embraced series fiction, starting with The Entire and The Rose from Pyr, and now the Dark Talents books from Saga. Why the switch?

Do you want the deep artistic reason or the crass marketing one? I mean, I’m tempted to go all artistic on you with the vision thing and growth as a writer, but I know you too well to lie that brazenly.

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The Latchkey Revelation: An Interview with Nicole Kornher-Stace

Monday, March 19th, 2018 | Posted by C.S.E. Cooney

Latchkey Nicole Kornher-Stace-small Latchkey Nicole Kornher-Stace-back-small

O long, long have I anti…cipated (yes, just like that) the sequel to Nicole Kornher-Stace’s Archivist Wasp. A book about ghosts and girls, ferocity and friendship, catastrophe and cataclysm and katabasis and a whole badass bunch of other alliterative nouns, Archivist Wasp published in 2015 by Big Mouth House, an imprint of Small Beer Press.

So you see, that was ALMOST THREE WHOLE YEARS AGO! I’ve been WAITING and WAITING and WAAAAIIIITIIINNNGGG!

But fear not. That time of endlessly unfulfilled appetite has not been wasted. I have not waited in vain. For now — at last! — the day I have yearned for is AT HAND!

(*cues Phantom of the Opera synthesizers and a falling chandelier*)

Nicole Kornher-Stace has done her job, and done it well. And Mythic Delirium has abetted her by publishing it. Soon! In July! This year! And you can PRE-ORDER IT HERE!

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Wordsmiths: Black Gate Interviews Jim Butcher at ConFusion 2018

Friday, February 23rd, 2018 | Posted by Brandon Crilly

If you talk to Jim Butcher, he might tell you that he’s a “crazy hermit shut-in” and scoff at being referred to as the Jim Butcher — showing that even one of the greatest fantasy writers around might be as uncomfortable with accolades as the rest of us mere mortals. How do I know this? Because I got the chance to sit down with Jim at ConFusion last month, for an hour-long chat about his published work, his craft, and what makes him tick.

I’ve been a huge fan of Jim’s ever since a friend shoved Storm Front at me and insisted I read it, and I sincerely hope you enjoy watching it as much as I enjoyed taking part in it. There is a lot that can be learned from Jim Butcher, and I’m really happy with what we were able to get into here.

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