Eating Authors: Naomi Novik

1 Comment » Written on June 13th, 2016 by
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Naomi Novik

I’m preparing this week’s post from New Mexico, where I am ensconced at a writers’ retreat and working hard to up my craft (while also enjoying great company, fabulous meals, and some truly awesome leisurely walks through nature). But such things cannot stop the juggernaut that is the EATING AUTHORS blog! Which is about as much of a segue as you’re going to get this week by way of an introduction for my latest guest, Naomi Novik, who should already be known to you for her Temeraire series which blends fantasy and alternate history (or, as it’s more commonly described, the Napoleonic Wars with dragons!).

She’s a past Hugo nominee, and has won the Campbell Award as well as the Compton Crook Award. And just last month, Naomi took home the Nebula Award for Uprooted. So, if by some fluke you’ve not already read her work, seriously, what can you possibly be waiting for?

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Eating Authors: Adam Rakunas

No Comments » Written on June 6th, 2016 by
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Adam Rakunas

So there’s this thing, let’s call it “June,” and it’s supposed to be the time when summer begins (I’m writing only for northern hemisphere folks at the moment, sorry). Except… during the last week in May temperatures climbed into the 90’s like, you know, summer. Not surprisingly, June is a little upset with this and it’s anybody’s guess how it will all pan out. As for me, I’ve already turned on the A/C here at home.

As to whether any of this is a problem for Adam Rakunas, this week’s guest here at EATING AUTHORS, I could not say. He lives waaaaay over on the left side of the country in that rainy Pacific Northwest place you keep hearing about. But we do have a couple things in common, as we were both raised and educated in southern California. Yeah, we have that going for us.

Adam also has another thing going his way. His new novel, Like A Boss (the second book in his Windswept series), come out tomorrow from the irascible automatons at Angry Robot Books. Pick up a copy, it might help improve the robots’ mood.

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Eating Authors: Alyssa Wong (Campbell Award nominee)

No Comments » Written on May 30th, 2016 by
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Alyssa Wong

Hello and welcome to the second and last of this year’s special Campbell Award nominee editions of EATING AUTHORS. This is scheduled to post on Memorial Day, arguably the busiest convention day of the year (as I type this, I’m away at BayCon), so I’ll understand if you don’t read this today, but maybe come by later in the week after you’ve recovered from your own travels.

As detailed last week, of the five authors nominated for this year’s award, Sebastien de Castell has already shared his memories of a meal (back on July 27th of last year), Andy Weir was too busy with other projects, Pierce Brown could not be reached, and Brian Niemeier was featured last week. Which brings us to this week’s guest, Alyssa Wong, who likely may already be known to you, as her short fiction has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize, the Bram Stoker Award, the Locus Award, and the Shirley Jackson Award. Oh, and earlier this month she took home the Nebula Award for Best Short of 2015.

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Eating Authors: Brian Niemeier (Campbell Award nominee)

No Comments » Written on May 23rd, 2016 by
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In just under twelve months, thousands of people will converge on Kansas City, and while they’ll doubtless consume vast quantities of barbecue, that won’t be their main reason for the trip. No, they’ll be showing up for MidAmeriCon II (also known as the WorldCon), a wondrous celebration that for many is the highlight of the convention year. And a regular feature of the convention is the Hugo Award ceremony, which includes the coveted John W. Campbell (not a Hugo) Award for Best New Writer.

Long time viewers of this blog know that, as a former Campbell nominee myself, I am a sucker for this award. Which is why each year I reach out to the nominees and invite them to come on down and share the tale of their most memorable meal. Alas, the pickings are a bit slim this year. Of the four nominees, Sebastien de Castell has already graced this space with a meal (back on July 27th of last year), Andy Weir sent his regrets as he’s swamped with books, TV pilots, and screenplays, and Pierce Brown never responded to my queries. This leaves Alyssa Wong (who will be featured here next week) and today’s EATING AUTHOR guest, Brian Niemeier.

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Eating Authors: Bishop O’Connell

No Comments » Written on May 16th, 2016 by
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Bishop O'Connell

I’m writing this before the Nebula Awards take place, so I don’t know if I’ve won for Best Novel or watched one of my incredible co-nominees take home the prize. What I do know is that I’ll be on a plane flying home from Chicago the morning this posts. But just because I’m going to be recovering from what will (win or lose) be a gloriously exhausting trip is not sufficient reason to deprive you of an EATING AUTHORS post. Especially when I have Bishop O’Connell standing by as this week’s guest.

Bishop is the author of the American Faerie Tale series, with three volumes published thus far and a fourth book (The Returned) coming out in just a couple months (July 12th, to be precise). He resides in Richmond, Virginia.

I’d tell you more about his background and history, but he’s gone on record as making some or all of it up, and it’s a slippery slope to be sure. And attempting to Google him is also somewhat fraught, unless… made he really is a high school in Arlington. Hmmm, it would explain some things…

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Eating Authors: Ada Palmer

1 Comment » Written on May 9th, 2016 by
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Ada Palmer

As you know, Bob, the Nebula Awards Conference is happening this week (I fly out on Wednesday), it’s always an exciting time, a chance to reconnect with old friends and to make some new ones. Among the latter is Ada Palmer, this week’s guest here at EATING AUTHORS. I first noticed her name when I received my preliminary programming schedule for the GenCon Writer’s Symposium and saw we were doing a panel together. Then I spotted it again when I was perusing the “Ask An Expert” offerings at the Nebs. And again upon discovering that not only is her debut novel, Too Like the Lightning, coming out tomorrow from Tor Books, but also that we share a publicist. It’s like the universe was speaking to me.

And if that weren’t enough to convince me to invite her in to tell us about her most amazing meal, you need to know that this is a woman who is organizing a four-person team to determine, once and for all, the best possible gelato experience in Florence! Ada is also a history professor at the University of Chicago, and I can only imagine that if any of the people who tried to teach me history had shared even a fraction of her passion for empirical gelato discovery, my education would have gone a very different direction.

Also worth noting is that tomorrow’s debut fiction release is just the first volume in her Terra Ignota series. Book two, Seven Surrenders, comes out the first Tuesday in December (but feel free to pre-order it now).

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My FINAL 2016 BayCon Schedule

No Comments » Written on May 3rd, 2016 by
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BayCon

Now that it’s actually May, the Powers That Be over at Baycon have a couple minor tweaks to my schedule. Here now is the result, so you can properly find or stalk me.

NB: I do not have a formal signing slot in the program. That’s not a problem, as panels leave plenty of time at the end for brief conversations and autographs. Feel free to come at me with something you want signed at the end of one of my panels, or wherever you happen to find me.

Friday, May 27th
12:00 – 1:00 p.m. (Convene ) Opening Ceremonies
The official start of what you know will be an awesome weekend!
With David Gerrold, Chris Butler, Anastasia Hunter, and The Library Bards

1:00 – 2:30 p.m. (Connect 4) How to Remember EVERYTHING!
Mnemonics and You! Come here me explain how memory works and how to enhance yours.

2:30 – 4:00 p.m. (Collaborate 2) Star Trek – Why We Still Love It
From The Man Trap to to Star Trek Beyond, the franchise has spanned 50 years and still captures new generations of fans. Our panelists talk about the shows, the movies and the captivating universe that is Roddenberry’s legacy.
With David Gerrold, Wanda Kurtcu, and Irene Radford

7:00 – 9:00 p.m. (Convene) Meet The Guests
All attendees are invited to come meet and mingle with our guests at an informal reception.

Saturday, May 28th
10:00 – 11:30 a.m. (The Courtyard) GOH Breakfast
We’ve got to eat, and apparently it’s a spectator event at this convention.
With Chris Butler, David Gerrold, Bonnie Gordon, Anastasia Hunter, and Xander Jeanneret

11:30 – 1:00 p.m. (Collaborate 2) Klingon 101
What’s the point of a convention having a Special Language Guest is you can’t learn some Klingon? In less than an hour I will teach you 80% of Klingon grammar. Believe it!

1:00 – 2:30 p.m. (Synergy 4) How Can Science Fiction and Fantasy Blend Well?
Yeah, how? Well, I could tell you here, but then you wouldn’t come to the panel. Ha!
Jennifer L. Carson, Jacob Fisk, Todd McCaffrey, and Irene Radford

Sunday, May 29th
12:00 – 12:30 p.m. (The Courtyard) Reading
Come and hear me read from Barsk: The Elephants’ Graveyard.

1:00 – 2:30 p.m. (Strategy) A Chat With Lawrence M. Schoen
They tell me there is ***LIMITED SEATING*** for this event. Please visit Prog Ops to sign up and be a part of the small group of attendees with whom I will officially chat.

2:30 – 4:00 p.m. (Convene) GoH Interview: Lawrence M. Schoen
They won’t tell me what the questions are in advance, but I’m pretty sure I won’t be under oath. With luck, they will not be solicited questions from colleagues and family members.

5:30 – 7:00 p.m. (Synergy 5) Linguistics For The Storyteller
This is more than a “how to write” panel. Language is everywhere in our stories: it’s the vehicle we use to tell them, but also the engine that runs societies and personal relationships, and the tool that characters use to define their own identities. Linguistics is the study of language structure, from the level of sound, to word and sentence structure, all the way to the level of political discourse. Come learn about how it can turn your gut knowledge of language into a more conscious and powerful tool.
With Juliette Wade (M)

Monday, May 30th
10:00 – 11:30 a.m. (Synergy 4) Second Life’s Second Life
The living world is not enough. Come here us discuss existence in the virtual world of Second Life.
With David Ciriello (M)

1:00 – 2:30 p.m. (Engage) How We End
Death – social and personal experiences, in life and literature.
Gregg Castro (M), Colin Fisk, Setsu Uzume, Fred Wiehe, and Randy Smith

As always, be aware that some of the people listed on the items above may have to drop out due to other obligations (or be replaced by clones, pods, or distant cousins). Times of things are unlikely to change but I’ve been told a location or two might so always check the latest updates. And, as noted previously all attendees are responsible for their own action verbs.

See you at BayCon!

Eating Authors: Jennifer Foehner Wells

1 Comment » Written on May 2nd, 2016 by
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Jennifer Wells

Welcome to May! I have to say I have mixed feelings about this month, in part because I’ve enjoyed having all of April without the need to do any traveling. The first three months of this year have taught me what a simple pleasure it is to sleep in one’s own bed night after night. For that, as well as other reasons, April was glorious. May, on the other hand, represents a return to more, albeit delightful, travel. I’ll be spending a full third of the month away from home, first as a hopeful nominee at this year’s Nebula Conference in Chicago, and then as one of the GoHs at BayCon in San Mateo, California. Along the way I’m hoping to have some truly memorable meals (Valerie has scouted out and made reservations!), which is a good segue to why you’re really here, so let’s get to today’s EATING AUTHORS guest, and her most memorable meal.

Jennifer Foehner Wells is another indie-author success story, the woman behind the tentacles of Blue Bedlam Science Fiction. Her first novel, Fluency, smashed its way into best seller success via Kindle Direct Publishing, and this past March she followed it with the release of Remanence, the second book in her Confluence series. For my reading, it certainly didn’t hurt that her protagonist starts out as a linguist before transforming (butterfly-like) into the commander of an interstellar starship. You know, as one does.

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