Archive for July, 2011

The Skill List Project: The Raconteur Viewpoint

This is another post in The Skill List Project: an attempt to list all the skills involved in writing and selling fiction, particularly science fiction and fantasy. Last time around, we talked about Avoiding Viewpoint Mistakes. This time we’ll look at one of my favorite viewpoints, but one that definitely requires skill: the viewpoint of […]

Thoughts on Creating Magic Systems

I’ve written before, on other blogs (including, a site I maintain with several other fantasy authors) about creating magic systems and what I feel such a system needs to read as “real.”  In recent months, though, I’ve been thinking about magic a bit differently, in part because I’m now writing historical fantasy and contemporary […]

Birds, Dinosaurs, and the Secret Life of Labels

Well, another month has passed, and here is another post from me that contains more questions than answers. This post is particularly question-ridden because it arises from a very recent experience that I’m still digesting. I went to Readercon last weekend, where I spoke on several panels about gender in science fiction. Most of those […]

Prodding the Defaults, Episode 316

I’ve been talking lately about the setting for my new series, but mostly from a scientific point of view (since, despite being a fantasy story, it has a scientist heroine). But I’m anthropologist at heart, and I’d like to step back for a moment and talk about the social side of things. Specifically, religion. My […]

Does Heinlein Matter?

He used to.  He used to be the be-all and end-all of ‘60s, ‘70s, and ‘80s SF.  This despite the fact that most critics think his later output is far inferior to his Golden Age writing and juveniles.  Even during the rise (and fall) of the New Wave, Heinlein’s star, no matter how scorned, never […]

Author Information

James Alan Gardner

James Alan Gardner got his M.Math from the University of Waterloo with a thesis on black holes...and then he immediately started writing science fiction instead. He's been a finalist for the Hugo and Nebula awards, and has won the Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award as well as the Aurora award (twice). He's published seven novels (beginning with "Expendable"), plus a short story collection and (for street cred) a Lara Croft book. He cares deeply about words and sentences, and is working his way up to paragraphs. Visit site.

David B. Coe

David B. Coe ( is the Crawford award-winning author of the LonTobyn Chronicle, the Winds of the Forelands quintet, the Blood of the Southlands trilogy, and a number of short stories. Writing as D.B. Jackson (, he is the author of the Thieftaker Chronicles, a blend of urban fantasy, mystery, and historical fiction. David is also part of the Magical Words group blog (, and co-author of How To Write Magical Words: A Writer’s Companion. In 2010 he wrote the novelization of director Ridley Scott’s movie, Robin Hood. His books have been translated into more than a dozen languages. Visit site.

Chris Moriarty

Chris Moriarty has been making a living writing science fiction and fantasy for over a decade. Chris's books include SPIN STATE, SPIN CONTROL (winner of the 2007 Philip K. Dick Award), and THE INQUISITOR'S APPRENTICE. Chris also has a regular review column with the Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction. Visit site.

Marie Brennan

Marie Brennan is the author of more than forty short stories and seven novels, the most recent of which is the urban fantasy Lies and Prophecy. Visit site.

S.C. Butler

Butler is the author of The Stoneways Trilogy from Tor Books: Reiffen's Choice, Queen Ferris, and The Magician's Daughter. Find out what Reiffen does with magic, and what magic does with him... Visit site.



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