Lightspeed: Edited by John Joseph Adams



Author Spotlights

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Caroline M. Yoachim

When I was thinking about these colony ships, a couple of the key features were (1) that they were designed to interface with their cargo, and (2) they had enormous lifespans. It seemed natural to me that a complex organic entity that interacted with humans for thousands of years would develop consciousness.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Eric Gregory

I’m really fascinated by the way certain myths transform or cross-pollinate over time—fairies and grey aliens are both little people from Elsewhere who abduct innocent folks for mysterious reasons. And the giant nerd in me really likes the idea that there’s a sort of ur-myth or ur-monster behind those stories, some old truth that different cultures articulate in different ways. So the Sympathy’s another iteration of that whole concept.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Karin Lowachee

I think [power armor/mecha is] just damn cool to look at. It’s raw power built to smash and blow things up. There’s an aesthetic appeal, too, and a lot of variation on how that can come about—either more brute, more graceful, or more robotic in appearance. The idea that you can add extensions to your own body, in a way, and become an arsenal is probably attractive to people on all sorts of levels. There’s that idea of indestructability.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Caitlín R. Kiernan

That which any given person finds exotic or sexually unconventional, that’s not something that can be nailed down with a straightforward answer. These are things determined by the sum total of our life experiences, formative influences, particular cultures, etc. It so happens that I find cyborgs sexy, though I have no idea why. There’s a reason, or reasons, I’m certain, I just don’t dwell on what they might be. I sit down to write a story like this and I’m following unconscious impulse as much as conscious intention.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Vandana Singh

How do chance and habit and the laws of nature play out on a grand scale? The origins of uncertainty in the macroscopic and microscopic realms are actually quite different, but in this story I’ve messed with that quite deliberately. I’ve also had to think about how we do science in the mundane world, including the unfortunate separation between what C. P. Snow called “the two cultures,” the humanities and the sciences. I wanted to come up with imaginative alternatives—because it is both important and interesting to think about alternatives for things we take for granted.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Marc Laidlaw

The story came entirely from the first image: wondering how cats do that thing where they seem to edit reality and retroactively insert themselves in your lap after you’ve repeatedly tried to keep them out of it.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Karen Joy Fowler

I’m drawn to characters with imperfect knowledge of events, because they seem real to me. This is the human condition. We all have to operate daily without the data needed and all of our lives are severely impacted by events we don’t witness and are powerless to affect. By the ends of my stories, the reader knows at least as much as my narrator knows and sometimes more; if I know more than the narrator, then I mean for the reader to know that, too. Whatever questions remain in the story are questions for which I don’t have the answers.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Steven Utley

Ah, science fiction—how I doted on the stuff from exuberant boyhood into sullen post-adolescence, a span of time encompassing Captain Video and Again, Dangerous Visions. In somewhat less general terms, between the ages of ten and about twenty-eight, I described an arc through Jules Verne (admittedly, a tough go at age ten), H. G. Wells, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Ray Bradbury, Philip José Farmer, Harlan Ellison, Robert Silverberg, and Barry Malzberg: ontogeny roughly recapitulating phylogeny.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: David Barr Kirtley

A lot of my fiction is a retelling of something or other, because I have serious problems with the philosophical underpinnings of a lot of stories, and it often seems to me that the best way to answer them is to rewrite them in a way that lays bare the absurdity.

Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight: Kathleen Ann Goonan

We are technological creatures, and use the products of our scientific discoveries for various ends. Sometimes the results are predictable; often, they are not. Biotech is a strong presence in our lives today. As our scientific and engineering abilities become ever more finely honed, targeted biotech applications will become ubiquitous, with anticipated and unanticipated results.