Eating Authors: Sebastien de Castell

No Comments » Written on July 27th, 2015 by
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Sebastien de Castell

As I prepare this week’s EATING AUTHORS post, I’m far from home and surrounded by aliens. Which is to say I’m attending the 22nd annual conference of the Klingon Language Institute, as I warned you about last week. For days now we’ve been barking and spitting at one another, singing songs of battle, and telling uproarious stories. And we’ve done it all in Klingon. As always, it’s been glorious and alas ends all too quickly.

But it’s a fitting background for introducing this week’s guest, Sebastien de Castell, whose curriculum vitae reads like the description of an over-the-top action hero. Doubtless this lends a level of verisimilitude to the swashbuckling derring do to his The Greatcoats series, which presently includes Knight’s Shadow and Traitor’s Blade. So it’s hardly surprising then to discover — as you will when you read of his most memorable meal below — that the man is a romantic as well.

And I, for one, think that’s a good thing.

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Eating Authors: Mary Rickert

No Comments » Written on July 20th, 2015 by
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Mary Rickert

For most of you, today is just another Monday in July. Not so for me. Today is the last Monday before I head to Chicago for the 22nd annual conference of the Klingon Language Institute (aka the qep’a’ cha’maH cha’DIch), several days spent in the company of people who gather from around the world to share their delight in the galaxy’s fastest growing language. I’ve been pushing Klingon since 1992, and some of the folk I’ll be seeing this week have been in my life that long. So, in some ways, the qep’a’ is like a family reunion. But instead of a three-legged race we have pain sticks.

So if I seem a bit distracted today, it’s only because there’s so much left to get done before I head off to the conference, not least of which is to switch into “Klingon-mode” because, honestly, other than this one week each summer I don’t spend a lot of time speaking or thinking in Klingon.

Okay, so with my excuses firmly in place (majQa’!) let’s move on and get to introducing this week’s EATING AUTHORS guest, Mary Rickert. Not that Mary needs much introduction as earlier this year her novella The Mothers of Voorhisville, landed her on the Nebula Award ballot, and this past June she took home a Locus Award for her first novel, The Memory Garden. And that’s just for 2015. In prior years, her short fiction has earned her the Crawford Award, two World Fantasy Awards, as well as other nominations for both the Nebula and World Fantasy Awards.

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My pretty-much-final Sasquan (aka 74th WorldCon) Schedule

No Comments » Written on July 16th, 2015 by
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Sasquan

This summer I’ll be heading to glorious (or so the travel brochures asure me) Spokane, WA to partake in the 74th WorldCon, affectionately known as Sasquan.

And, in case you’d like to stalk me, here’s my full schedule:

Wednesday, August 19th
12:00 – 12:45 (Bays 111B) Comfort Reading
What do you read when you just want to relax? What books do you return to during busy times to unwind? What are your book equivalents of meatloaf and macaroni and cheese?
with Jason Hough, Louise Marley (M), Christie Meierz, and Jo Walton.

Thursday, August 20th
09:00 – 09:45 (Breezeway/Statue) Stroll with the Stars
A gentle morning stroll with some of your favorite authors, artists and editors. Meeting each morning at 9AM in the Breezeway between the INB Theater and the Convention Center (check your map), and returning in time for 10AM programming.
with David Gerrold, Vonda N. McIntyre, Cat Rambo, Stephen Segal, Stu Segal (M), and Tom Smith.

11:00 – 11:45 (401C) Klingon Language Workshop
An interactive (i.e., barking and spitting) session aimed at beginners. In 45 minutes I’ll run you through about 80% of Klingon grammar and leave you with the ability to speak and comprehend hundreds of well-formed sentences, including useful things to say throughout the rest of the convention!
this is my one-man show event, but any Klingon fans are welcome to help with crowd control, random and senseless martial discipline, and passing out instructional sheets.

12:30 – 13:00 (303B) Reading
The convention has generously given me 20 minutes to read to you. Come and listen to the first chapter of Barsk: The Elephants’ Graveyard. You too can be part of the groundswell for this shiny new book, and maybe even leave with an autographed copy of an ARC!
me plus an invocation of anthropomorphic elephants (and a few others, but hey, no pre-convention spoilers).

14:00 – 14:45 (202B-KK4) Kaffee Klatche
Somewhere there will be a sign-up sheet where you can put your name down to join me for light banter, inspiring pontification, rude jokes in Klingon, and the inevitable bloviation. Spaces are limited.
me and nine lucky souls!

Friday, August 21st
09:00 – 10:45 (Location is Secret!) Codex Worldcon Breakfast
As I try to do every year when I’m at the Worldcon, I’ll be attending the annual Codex Writers’ Breakfast. As of this writing, we’re looking at 60 participants. That’s a lot of waffles
The list of attendees is known to Codexii and their guests, sorry.

12:00 – 12:45 (Conference Theater 110) The Future of Food
Science fiction rarely discusses what people will eat in the future. Denny Zager and Rick Evans’ 1969 hit song, “In the Year 2525,” predicted “Everything you think, do and say is in the pill you took today.” Will the future really replace barbecue and burgers with capsules and protein drinks? How far can nutriceuticals go? Will we print our food in 3-D or carve it from Chicken Little? How are cuisines and tastes evolving? What drives food trends?
with Beth Cato, Scott Edelman, Amy Thomson, Fran Wilde.

13:00 – 13:45 (Exhibit Hall B) Autographing
Sasquan has thoughtfully set aside forty-five minutes for my annual ego-deflation. Come by and help me name the crickets.
with Aliette de Bodard, P. C. Hodgell, Richard Kadrey, Devon Monk, and Michelle Sagara.

Saturday, August 22nd
12:00 – 12:45 (Conference Theater 110) Alien Linguistics
Science fiction and fantasy often deals with alien or constructed languages. What makes a convincing language? What can we learn about creating such languages from the diversity of human languages?
with Annalee Flower Horne, David Peterson (M), Julia Smith, and Stanley Schmidt.

13:00 – 15:00 (300B) SFWA Business Meeting
It’s everyone’s favorite time to see how they make the sausage. Also, meet the new SFWA Board!
with a cast of dozens!

Sunday, August 23rd
09:00 – 09:45 (Breezeway/Statue) Stroll with the Stars
If you missed coming along on Thursday morning, this is your chance! Same route, different strollers. Meeting in the Breezeway between the INB Theater and the Convention Center (check your map), and returning in time for 10AM programming.
with Laura Anne Gilman, Joe Haldeman, Gay Haldeman, Stephen Segal, Stu Segal (M), and Steven Silver.

That’s pretty much it. At this point, it’s not clear if there will or will not be a San Marino Worldcon Bid Party (but if there is, it will be Saturday night — unless, um, it’s not).

See you in Richmond!

Eating Authors: Rachel A. Marks

1 Comment » Written on July 13th, 2015 by
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Rachel A. Marks

Why is it that the summer is such a crazy time? It’s not the heat (or not just the heat), and since I’m not in academia any more, on either side of the desk, I can’t blame it on the change in work schedule. Maybe it’s the conventions. I haven’t been to any yet this summer (though many of you reading this may have just returned from Readercon or ComicCon) but I’m still feeling it. Like when everyone around you is coming down with the flu and you’re still fine but a part of you knows it’s probably only a matter of time. Yeah, convention fever. It’s a viral thing.

I haven’t caught it yet — though the 22nd annual Klingon Language Conference, the qep’a’ cha’maH cha’DIch, is little more than a week away — but this week’s guest on EATING AUTHORS has a bad case of it. Rachel A. Marks has been off at ComicCon, and why not? The first volume of her Dark Cycle series, Darkness Brutal, just launched on the first of the month. Book two, Darkness Fair, is already in the can and should be coming your way in February.

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Eating Authors: Marshall Ryan Maresca

No Comments » Written on July 6th, 2015 by
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Marshall Ryan Maresca

For the last 20 years or so, I’ve always gotten a bit anxious in the days leading up to Independence Day (those of you living outside the USA, be advised I’m referring to the American event known locally as “the 4th of July”). As you may know, I live in the greater Philadelphia area, considered by some as the birthplace of the nation (we’ve got this bell, see…). Every year as this holiday draws nigh, I find myself thinking that if I wanted to make an anti-American statement, it would happen on this date and in this city, and then I start wondering where I should be spending the weekend, far far from here.

Of course, I’m setting up this week’s entry a bit in advance of the holiday, so if you’re reading this and something dire has come to pass, well, damn. Sorry. On the other hand, if this is just another Monday as usual, then great. Let’s proceed to the main event here at EATING AUTHORS and this week’s guest, Marshall Ryan Maresca.

I first met Marshall back in February when we were both snowed in at attending Boskone. His first novel, The Thorn of Dentonhill, had just been published and it was great fun to spend a portion of the convention just introducing him to lots and lots of people. But the life of a new author is not all panels and barconning, oh no. Marshall has been busy. The second book in his Maradaine Constabulary series, A Murder of Mages, comes out tomorrow! Hmm… we could be looking at a long-running series here!

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Eating Authors: Michael Hodges

No Comments » Written on June 29th, 2015 by
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Michael Hodges

And lo, we’ve nearly reached the end of the month, roughly the halfway point of 2015. Looking back over the past six months, I have to say I’m pretty pleased with the year so far, and looking forward I see even more exciting adventures on the horizon. Hoping you are the same.

Meanwhile, it’s another Monday, and one of my favorite ways to start the week is by telling you about an author that may be new to you but shouldn’t be. Michael Hodges has been writing short fiction for years, publishing in venues such as Penumbra Magazine and Perihelion SF.

Michael recently saw his first novel, The Puller, released by the fine folk at Severed Press. On a related note, the book’s already been optioned for a film, so run off and read it quickly before the movie comes out.

Michael dwells in the greater Chicago area, but his soul haunts the Northern Rockies.

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Eating Authors: Mike Allen

No Comments » Written on June 22nd, 2015 by
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Mike Allen

This week’s EATING AUTHORS guest is the kind of person I like to describe as a three-sided coin. Mike Allen may be known to you as one of the top speculative poets in the business, which probably goes a long way to explaining his three Rhysling Awards. Then there’s his skills as an editor, having created the poetry journal Mythic Delirium as well as the Clockwork Phoenix: Tales of Beauty and Strangeness anthology series. Somewhere in there he’s also found the time to write some prose. He’s been previously nominated for a Nebula Award for Best Short Story (and his recent collection, Unseaming, a Shirley Jackson Award finalist, makes that point very clear) and he’s no stranger to longer lengths, (e.g., his novel The Black Fire Concerto).

Like most three-side coins, odd things happen when you flip him. But don’t take my word for it, after you’ve read his account below why don’t you go and check out some of his work and see for yourself?

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Eating Authors: Stephanie Feldman

No Comments » Written on June 15th, 2015 by
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Stephanie Feldman

I saw my first firefly of the year a couple evenings ago, which for me marks the real start of summer (forget Memorial Day or the solstice, I’m here to tell you, it’s all about the fireflies). Signs. Signs and portents. Which is about as good as I’m going to be able to manage for a segue to introduce you to Stephanie Feldman, my guest this week here at EATING AUTHORS, whose first novel, The Angel of Losses won the William L. Crawford Fantasy Award earlier this year. And, if that’s not enough for you, it was also a finalist for the Mythopoeic Fantasy Award, as well as landing on the Washington Post’s Five Best Science Fiction/Fantasy Books of 2014.

Stephanie continues the glorious tradition of awesome authors living in the greater Philadelphia area (seriously, there must be something in the water here). For reasons that I cannot begin to comprehend, I’ve not seen a lot of buzz about this book, and so please believe me when I tell you that it is nothing short of incredible and seriously, why haven’t you clicked the cover image below and already ordered a copy? By the way, the paperback version of her book comes out a week from tomorrow, so you’re really running out of excuses.

Oh, and one final plug (in case you’re live in or plan to be in Philadelphia), in celebration of the paperback release, Stephanie will be appearing at a local Barnes & Noble (1805 Walnut Street, Philadelphia) alongside novelists Daniel Torday and Cecily Wong. It’s all taking place on Wednesday, June 24th, starting at 7pm. The word on the street is that Geekadelphia will be there running a trivia quiz. Expect readings, prizes, and possibly even (gasp!) cupcakes.

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