Science Fiction & Fantasy

A DARKER SHADE OF MAGIC by V.E. Schwab

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Author Spotlights

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Ann Leckie and Rachel Swirsky

The birth scene was the one that Ann and I had the most trouble with. I wanted to write something abstract and blurry in the way that writers often do when we want to dodge details, something like “Time started to fade as she became preoccupied by her senses, and sometime later . . . “ And Ann was like, “Yeah, no, that’s not what birth is like.” She’s done it twice, so she won the argument.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Jeremiah Tolbert

I was first exposed to the idea of neophiles and neophobes by writer Robert Anton Wilson, and it’s a notion that has stuck with me ever since. I’m an unabashed neophile, but my personal belief is you’d have to be a little crazy to not be afraid of what the future could hold sometimes. On the net, I think I’m pro-new and pro-future. But there are some futures that I wouldn’t want to live in.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Matthew Hughes

In this serialized novel, as in the rest of my Archonate stories, I’m looking at a civilization that is about to be profoundly changed, though almost all of its inhabitants have no idea what’s about to happen. The general inspiration came from thinking about the western world in the summer of 1914, when the civilization of Europe was about to be wracked and transformed beyond recognition, but only a few realized that “the lamps are going out and will not be lit again.”

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Michael Cassutt

I have been fascinated by human spaceflight since I was eleven years old and have done a lot of research into and writing on the subject — five books, in fact, with a new one on the way, in addition to a couple of dozen articles. I’ve met dozens of astronauts, flight directors, and space program types. And for years I have grown a bit impatient or even completely cranky with the way human spaceflight is portrayed.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Aliette de Bodard

I was writing a story for an anthology edited by Nick Mamatas and Ellen Datlow, which was about retellings of classic horror tales. Basically, at the time I was reading Pu Songling’s STRANGE TALES FROM A CHINESE STUDIO, and this was the one tale that stuck with me — because the detail of the painted skin is so horrific, I guess?

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam

I absolutely wanted to explore a less certain view of sexuality, one that was true to my own experience. When I was in high school, a lot of students did see sexuality as this fluid thing, even in the small Texas town where I grew up. But as someone who was attracted to both men and women, I struggled with feeling like I had to be either gay or straight; most of this pressure came from adults with a more closed-off view of sexuality.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Sequoia Nagamatsu

Once I decided that this story would involve a corporation, I felt like attaching a corporate structure to the arc of the story would not only provide an annual report-style history of Headwater, but also reinforce the fact that Yoko’s life (and the life of the other employees and the customers) are very much woven into the fabric of Headwater (through addiction, through totalitarian company policy).

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Theodora Goss

I think we all know Beautiful Boys. We probably knew them in high school, the ones who were in a band, and smoked during lunch period, and mothers warned their daughters about. There were certainly boys like that in my high school, and I dated several of them despite my mother’s warnings. And then you never hear about them again, unless it’s years later and they’re doing carpentry in Montana.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Rachael Acks

I also searched for blog posts from veterans and active duty soldiers about the experience of PTSD. Some of them are very frank, such as with that concept of never feeling safe, always thinking about the exits. I’m grateful that veterans and currently serving soldiers are being more open about their experiences; it’s important for civilians to understand these things, because we’ve frankly been failing pathetically when it comes to our responsibility to those who have served and are serving.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Damien Angelica Walters

I was thinking about the nature of liars, how they often get away with it by spoon-feeding people stories a little at a time, and the lengths they’ll go to to preserve that fiction as truth. Some of the best liars use sweet words as a lure; they tell people what they want to hear and believe, and they do it in such a way that their sincerity is never doubted. (At least not until it begins to fall apart, as all lies eventually do.)