Science Fiction & Fantasy

Hawk by Steven Brust

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Author Spotlights

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Ysabeau S. Wilce

I wrote this story while I was at Clarion West. The whole thing — character, voice, action — just sort of sprang, as it were, completely out of nowhere. I stole the name Springheel Jack from the notorious early nineteenth-century monster, but the shiny red boots were a riff on the fairy tale of the red shoes. Instead of making you dance until you drop, these boots make you steal until you drop.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Marie Vibbert

I was walking in Niagara Falls, Canada, far from the strip, with my husband. We had gotten lost and ended up on a residential street — all these tiny bungalows so close to massive hotels. I wondered what it was like to live in a small town that was also a huge tourist attraction. I wanted to write a story that took place on a space station as the ultimate closed community — an exaggeration of the trapped feeling of living in a small town, juxtaposed against the freely mobile wealthy visitors.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Steve Hockensmith

I’ve written a mystery series set in the Old West — the Holmes on the Range novels — so I’ve done a ton of research into cowboy life and slang. One of the things I enjoyed most about writing the Holmes on the Range books was the chance to throw around a lot of colorful words and turns of phrase, so I did that in “The Herd,” too.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Rebecca Ore

I was living in rural Virginia, where the fragments of slavery and interracial breeding were still swirling around — one of the people I knew was a guy whose male ancestor was either R.J. or Hardin Reynolds — [of the] Reynolds Tobacco family. We saw what had happened, but didn’t always understand why things had happened. The Reynolds family sold a slave, apparently because the other slaves hated him, and bought a piano with the money. I don’t know if that’s a true narrative or not …

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Author Spotlight: Kelly Link

I was in my first year of the MFA program at University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and needed to turn something in to workshop for the first time. Someone I knew had told me the story about how as a teenager, they had masturbated into Kleenex, and then had the problem of their dog wanting to eat the Kleenex. I also wanted to write about a mother with a wooden leg, and a surplus of dogs. I liked the idea of an awkward dinner.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Daniel José Older

Science fiction allows us to imagine both the best and worst of humanity. When we open our stories up to the realm of the fantastic, we bring a new creativity and freshness to the question of how to survive this twisted, complicated world with our souls intact. As a genre, science fiction hasn’t always been welcoming to different cultures and their answers to this question.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Rhys Hughes

Sometimes ideas bubble and percolate through unknown passageways in my mind for many years before they finally find expression in a story, but in the case of “Eternal Horizon,” everything developed very quickly indeed. I was walking along a remote beach and looking out to sea and a submerged sandbank halfway to the horizon made a line of surf that looked like another horizon nearer to shore. On the way back home all the elements came together from this single observation.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Sam J. Miller

“We Are the Cloud” extrapolates from the very real and interconnected systems of exploitation that I was seeing up close through my work with homeless people. The people I met at soup kitchens had aged out of foster care; the moms I met in shelters had lost kids to the foster care system. The boys I saw hanging out in Morningside Park in Harlem were the ones who got arrested and fed into the prison system by cops looking to fill their quotas;

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Matthew Hughes

I like a good (i.e., unanachronistic) historical, like Patrick O’Brien’s masterful Aubrey/Maturin tales, and I read a lot of crime fiction. People who are familiar with my work will know that I’m actually a crime writer trapped in a science-fiction author’s career.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Holly Black

The story actually started with the rules. I’d been reading a lot of Karin Lowachee and Lois McMaster Bujold and I wanted to experiment with writing science fiction of the sort I’ve read a bunch of, but never written. As I was thinking through the story I wanted to tell, I thought of a few of the rules and wondered if I could play with them as structural markers.