Overdrive

Monday, August 7th, 2017 11:00 am
marthawells: (Reading)
People of the Libraries: FYI, the ebooks of my first four novels (The Element of Fire, City of Bones, Wheel of the Infinite, and The Death of the Necromancer) plus the story collection Between Worlds: the Collected Ile-Rien and Cineth Stories should be available now on Overdrive, through Draft2Digital.

ArmadilloCon!

Monday, August 7th, 2017 07:32 am
marthawells: (Stargate)
This weekend was ArmadilloCon 39 in Austin, which has been my favorite local convention for a long time. (It was actually the first one I went to, way back when I was in high school and I somehow talked my parents into taking me and a friend to it.)

Right before we left on Thursday afternoon, I got my copyedit for The Murderbot Diaries: Artificial Condition. We got to Austin, checked in at the hotel and then drove to a friend's house and while everybody else went swimming, I worked on the copyedit. (This is the last check for grammar, punctuation, missing words, making sure all sentences make sense, etc, and where I do a last read-through to hopefully catch any last mistakes.) Then when our friend got home from work, we went out to eat at an Argentine restaurant that was incredibly delicious. We got back to the hotel late and I finished the copyedit and got it sent off.

Then Friday morning I had to get up early and get breakfast and got to the writers workshop at 8:30 - 9:00. It's an all day thing and it went well, and I got to meet Nisi Shawl in person instead of just in pixels! It finished around 4:30 and we met up with more friends and went to a Japanese place called Lucky Robot that was also delicious and where I ate too many steamed pork buns. (It was happy hour and they were cheap.) We came back to the hotel and I had to struggle to stay awake and I ended up going to bed around 9:00.

Saturday I had all my programming, a reading, a signing, and three panels between 11:00 and 6:00. So that was kind of a whirlwind. In between all that, I signed a bunch of books. And for the reading I did a section of Artificial Condition and everybody laughed in all the right places. That night we went out with more friends to a Tex-Mex place and I had two mojitos and went to bed by 10:00. (This is why I don't go to parties much at cons, because I'm mostly semi-conscious by 6:00 and then dinner finishes me off.)

Sunday I just had one panel, an intro for people going to World Fantasy in November. We'd had a big breakfast with friends that morning, but still went on to have a big lunch at Hoovers, soul food place. I had ham steak, very much like my mother used to make, and it was delicious. Then we drove home and basically didn't eat anything for dinner last night except toast and cereal.

Raksura Patreon

Monday, July 31st, 2017 08:54 am
marthawells: (John and Ronon)
I just posted a new Raksura short story to my Patreon https://www.patreon.com/user?u=2458567 despite the Patreon interface's best efforts to stop me.

ArmadilloCon

Thursday, July 27th, 2017 10:05 am
marthawells: (Stargate)
Coming up on August 4-6 is ArmadilloCon in Austin: http://armadillocon.org/d39/#/

Major guests are: Guest of Honor: Nisi Shawl, Toastmaster: Don Webb, Fan Guest: A.T. Campbell, III Artist Guest: Mark A. Nelson, Editor Guest: Trevor Quachri, Special Guest: Tamora Pierce


My schedule is:


Friday: teaching at writers workshop


Saturday

Sa1100102 Reading
Sat 11:00 AM-11:30 AM Room 102
Martha Wells
(I'll probably read something from The Murderbot Diaries: Artificial Condition)


Sa1200DR Signing
Sat Noon-1:00 PM Dealers' Room
J. Comer, J. Wells, M. Wells
(I'll have Raksura stickers with art by Pentapoda to give away.)


Sa1400BE Pantsing vs. Outlining
Sat 2:00 PM-3:00 PM Ballroom E
C. Clevenger*, B. Crider, N. Southard, J. Reasoner, J. Wells, M. Wells


Sa1500BE Novellas (non tele)
Sat 3:00 PM-4:00 PM Ballroom E
J. Reasoner, A. Simmons*, W. Spencer, H. Waldrop, C. Ward, M. Wells
Is the Novella just a stunted novel,a spring-board for an awful fix-up novel, or the perfect length for written SF?


Sa1700SPB Fan Guest Interview
Sat 5:00 PM-6:00 PM Southpark B
A.T. Campbell, M. Wells*, T. Wilson*



Sunday:

Su1100SPB Preview of World Fantasy 2017
Sun 11:00 AM-Noon Southpark B
R. Babcock, J. Miles, M. Wells*
Co-chairs and Toastmaster of the upcoming World Fantasy Convention in San Antonio tell us what's coming
marthawells: (Miko)
http://www.tor.com/2017/07/26/the-2017-world-fantasy-award-nominees-have-been-announced/

Congrats to all the nominees!

Novel

Borderline, Mishell Baker (Saga)
Roadsouls, Betsy James (Aqueduct)
The Obelisk Gate, N.K. Jemisin (Orbit US; Orbit UK)
The Sudden Appearance of Hope, Claire North (Redhook; Orbit UK)
Lovecraft Country, Matt Ruff (Harper)

Long Fiction

The Dream-Quest of Vellitt Boe, Kij Johnson (Tor.com Publishing)
The Ballad of Black Tom, Victor LaValle (Tor.com Publishing)
Every Heart a Doorway, Seanan McGuire (Tor.com Publishing)
“Bloodybones,” Paul F. Olson (Whispered Echoes)
A Taste of Honey, Kai Ashante Wilson (Tor.com Publishing)

Short Fiction

“Das Steingeschöpf,” G.V. Anderson (Strange Horizons 12/12/16)
“Our Talons Can Crush Galaxies,” Brooke Bolander (Uncanny 11-12/16)
“Seasons of Glass and Iron,” Amal El-Mohtar (The Starlit Wood)
“Little Widow,” Maria Dahvana Headley (Nightmare 9/16)
“The Fall Shall Further the Flight in Me,” Rachael K. Jones (Clockwork Phoenix 5)

Anthology

Clockwork Phoenix 5, Mike Allen, ed. (Mythic Delirium)
Dreaming in the Dark, Jack Dann, ed. (PS Australia)
Children of Lovecraft, Ellen Datlow, ed. (Dark Horse)
The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2016, Karen Joy Fowler & John Joseph Adams, eds. (Mariner)
The Starlit Wood, Dominik Parisien & Navah Wolfe, eds. (Saga)

Collection

Sharp Ends, Joe Abercrombie (Orbit US; Gollancz)
On the Eyeball Floor and Other Stories, Tina Connolly (Fairwood)
A Natural History of Hell, Jeffrey Ford (Small Beer)
Vacui Magia, L.S. Johnson (Traversing Z Press)
The Paper Menagerie and Other Stories, Ken Liu (Saga; Head of Zeus)

Artist

Greg Bridges
Julie Dillon
Paul Lewin
Jeffrey Alan Love
Victo Ngai

Special Award, Professional

L. Timmel Duchamp, for Aqueduct Press
C.C. Finlay, for editing F&SF
Michael Levy & Farah Mendelsohn, for Children’s Fantasy Literature: An Introduction (Cambridge University Press)
Kelly Link, for contributions to the genre
Joe Monti, for contributions to the genre

Special Award, Non-Professional

Scott H. Andrews, for Beneath Ceaseless Skies
Neile Graham, for fostering excellence in the genre through her role as Workshop Director, Clarion West
Malcom R. Phifer & Michael C. Phifer, for their publication The Fantasy Illustration Library, Volume Two: Gods and Goddesses (Michael Publishing)
Lynne M. Thomas & Michael Damian Thomas, for Uncanny
Brian White, for Fireside Fiction Company


The awards will be announced at the World Fantasy Convention, which this year is November 2-5 in San Antonio, TX. http://wfc2017.org/wfc2017/

Headliner guests are Tananarive Due, Karen Joy Fowler, Gregory Manchess, David Mitchell, Gordon Van Gelder TOASTMASTER: Martha Wells

Catching Up

Wednesday, July 26th, 2017 08:06 am
marthawells: (Default)
I went on vacation last week, first actual vacation in a long time. Me, my husband, and two friends went to Galveston Island, which is about a three hour drive away and stayed on the east beach: https://marthawells.tumblr.com/post/163287314212/yesterday-we-got-back-from-three-days-in

We swam everyday, and stood on a sandbar over a hundred yards out in the water and looked at rainstorms out in the gulf. The water was warm in the afternoon, like a giant saltwater spa. We ate a lot of seafood and had margaritas and went out in the harbor in a little boat. It was awesome.

Then yesterday I had jury duty for traffic court, got picked, and everyone there got to tell a mean, angry, scary old white guy clearly used to controlling everything around him that yes, he did have to pay his fine just like everyone else. I don't even know how someone could be this confident in his belief that he can get away with anything, but watching him change his story and lie, and have the woman DA point out the body cam and dash cam video showing he was lying, and Judge Navarro being completely fair yet also bored and unimpressed, and effortlessly cutting off the guy's attempt to rant and swear on the stand. The Judge also made the DA skip over what was probably 20 minutes of video that didn't show anything except that the guy was a terrible person, but believe me, the jury already knew that.

I'm going to try to catch up on book rec posts, and I need to do another Raksura story for my Patreon this month. (https://www.patreon.com/user?u=2458567)
marthawells: (Reading)
Signings and Stuff


* Here are some photos of me and Rachel Caine at our signing at Murder by the Book: https://marthawells.tumblr.com/post/163060728297/my-friend-tooks-some-photos-of-me-and-rachel-caine We had a good crowd, even though it was pouring rain and there were tornado warnings.

* Here's a post from me on Writers Read: https://whatarewritersreading.blogspot.com/2017/07/martha-wells.html about what I'm reading now (actually what I was reading when I wrote the post)

* And I'm not in this article but I know all these people: https://www.austinchronicle.com/arts/2017-07-14/writing-science-fiction-fantasy-and-horror-in-austin/



***

Books


(If you've been following my book rec and new book listing posts for a while, you may have noticed this already, but while most book lists emphasize books by popular straight white men, this one emphasizes everybody else. I include books by straight white men, but in about the same percentage that other book lists include everybody else. I also try to highlight books that are less well known.)

(I only link to one retail outlet in the book's listing, but most books are available at multiple outlets, like Kobo, iBooks, international Amazons, Barnes & Noble, etc. The short stories are usually on free online magazines.)


* Short Story: Children of Thorns, Children of Water by Aliette de Bodard


* Stranglehold by Rene Sears
Morgan Tenpenny has retreated from her painful, magical past, choosing to live quietly as a guardian of one of the gates between worlds. But her sister Gwen is married to a lord of the High Court of Faerie-and when Gwen asks her to protect her nieces, it's time for Morgan to emerge from her seclusion. The gates to Faerie have inexplicably closed, and no one knows why...


* Revision by Andrea Phillips
Mira is a trust fund baby playing at making it on her own as a Brooklyn barista. When Benji, her tech startup boyfriend, dumps her out of the blue, she decides a little revenge vandalism is in order. Mira updates his entry on Verity, Benji’s Wikipedia-style news aggregator, to say the two have become engaged. Hours later, he shows up at her place with an engagement ring. Chalk it up to coincidence, right? Soon after, Benji’s long-vanished co-founder Chandra shows up asking for Mira’s help. She claims Verity can nudge unlikely events into really happening — even change someone’s mind. And Chandra insists that Verity — and Mira’s newly minted fiance — can’t be trusted.


* Short Story: Waiting on a Bright Moon by JY Yang


* Where the Stars Rise: Asian Science Fiction and Fantasy (Laksa Anthology Series: Speculative Fiction Book 3) edited by Lucas K. Law and Derwin Mak


* All Things Violent by Nikki Dolson
Soon the ambitious Simon introduces her to Frank Joyce, a man who would teach her how to become a stone-cold professional killer. Laura learns her deadly trade and earns her money. Twenty-six years old and she thinks she’s found her happily ever after. Sadly it all falls apart when Simon leaves her for another. Now some other woman, blonde and polished, all shiny and new, is living Laura’s happy life.


* Telling the Map by Christopher Rowe
There are ten stories here including one readers have waited ten long years for: in new novel-la The Border State Rowe revisits the world of his much-lauded story The Voluntary State.

Swag!

Wednesday, July 12th, 2017 09:28 am
marthawells: (The Serpent Sea)
Raksura stickers and buttons


This is the first time I’ve been able to afford actual swag for a signing. These are stickers with art by Pentapoda, and I also have buttons. I’ll have them at the Murder by the Book (in Houston) signing with Rachel Caine on 7/15/2017 at 4:30 (if you can’t come, you can order our signed and personalized books to ship to you at http://www.murderbooks.com/event/wells-caine ) and at ArmadilloCon http://armadillocon.org/d39/#/ and World Fantasy 2017 http://wfc2017.org/wfc2017/

Tuesday Post

Tuesday, July 11th, 2017 07:57 am
marthawells: (Stargate)
My post on the Barnes & Noble blog: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/blog/sci-fi-fantasy/8-books-blend-science-magic-minus-fantasy-tropes/ Fantasies that Blend Magic and Science

I also somehow missed that there was a Publishers Weekly review for The Harbors of the Sun: https://www.publishersweekly.com/978-1-59780-891-0

I removed the one mildy spoilery bit:

The beautiful fifth Raksura fantasy begins immediately after the events of The Edge of Worlds, tracing the various journeys of Moon, Jade, and the rest of the now-scattered Raksuran archaeological expedition.... Having done the heavy lifting of characterization in earlier books in the series, Wells is able to focus here on exploring how the Raksura fit into the wider world, dealing with the prejudices that result from their previous isolation, their shape-shifting ability and other magic, and their biological connection to the predatory Fell. The Fell themselves give rise to some of the more intriguing social explorations, as more is revealed about the half-Fell/half-Raksurans who were raised among the predators. Wells’s worldbuilding strengths are on display, and she knows just what to explain and what to imply, making this volume accessible to newcomers as well as longtime readers.


Now I'm going back to my aerobics class and hope I don't have any trouble from my back, my hands, my feet or any of the other bits of me that are falling off.

Monday

Monday, July 10th, 2017 07:33 am
marthawells: (SGA Team)
I keep wanting to write more here, but I keep forgetting to, and then forgetting what I was going to write about. I've been busy trying to do promo stuff for The Harbors of the Sun and I had a bunch of guest posts to write, and I've been working on the fourth Murderbot novella. (Which basically means I write half of it, decide it's going in completely the wrong direction, and start over.)

I need to start up Martha's Guide to TV Mysteries again because I have a lot to add to it. In particular Witnesses, which is a French series available on Netflix with subtitles, with a woman main character dealing with very creepy mysteries. (The first series starts with the discovery that someone is digging up corpses and arranging them like they're a family in model show homes in real estate developments.)

Now I went back and looked at my old mystery guide posts and now I can't remember what else I was going to write. So basically, stress, distraction, stress, is how things are going.


Oh, standard begging: If you enjoyed The Harbors of the Sun, please consider leaving a review somewhere like Amazon or GoodReads. Amazon won't include the book in its promotion system until it gets 50 reviews/ratings (Or so we think, I'm not sure if anyone knows for sure), so reviews and ratings really do help a huge amount and writers really appreciate them.

Also, if you want to get the book at your local library and they don't have it, remember that you can request that they buy it for their collection. And a lot of libraries are offering ebook lending, too, now.


And I'm doing a signing at Murder by the Book in Houston this weekend (July 15, 4:30) with Rachel Caine, and if you can't come you can get our signed and personalized books shipped to you from here: http://www.murderbooks.com/event/wells-caine Signed books make great gifts!

Also coming up is ArmadilloCon is Austin http://armadillocon.org/d39/#/ on August 4-6.

Posts

Friday, July 7th, 2017 08:15 am
marthawells: (Default)
I have guest posts here:

Post on Write On, Right On: Reading for Fun and How I Temporarily Forgot How to Do It http://writeonrightoncom.ipage.com/42/reading-for-fun-and-how-i-temporarily-forgot-how-to-do-it

One thing I've been thinking about lately is how so many writers don't have time to read. We presumably got into writing because we were readers, but the older you get, the more you work, the more you have to do, and it starts to get hard to find time for reading. I hate that.


and:

The Page 69 Test for The Harbors of the Sun
http://americareads.blogspot.com/2017/07/pg-69-martha-wellss-harbors-of-sun.html


and:

There's an interview with me here about Harbors and the Books of the Raksura in general:
http://paulsemel.com/exclusive-interview-harbors-sun-author-martha-wells/


Also, on July 4 we sat out in the yard after dark, and found out we have a colony of small burrowing owls. It makes sense, since we have two water sources (a lily/frog pond and a fountain) and no outdoor pets any more. And now I know what made all those holes, and it wasn't snakes and giant spiders.
marthawells: (Atlantis)
Everybody, Artificial Condition, the second Murderbot Diaries, had to have its ISBN changed, that's why it disappeared from retailers. It should be back up for preorder soon, and it's still coming out in 2018. It's actually a very good thing because it means the book is going to get wider distribution in bookstores.

Artificial Condition and the third novella in the series, Rogue Protocol are finished drafts, it's just the fourth one I'm still working on.
marthawells: (The Serpent Sea)






So, tomorrow, July 4 2017, is the release day for The Harbors of the Sun, the last book in the Books of the Raksura series.

The ebooks will be dropping tomorrow, but I think the trade paperbacks and hardcovers have already started shipping. (I haven't heard anything about an audio version yet.)

If you want a signed edition, you can order one shipped to you from Murder by the Book as part of a signing I'm doing there with Rachel Caine on July 15. (You can probably get a whole signed set of Raksura books if you want, as long as you order in enough time for the store to get them.)


The timeline for all novels, and the novellas and stories collected in Stories of the Raksura I and II is:


"The Tale of Indigo and Cloud" - in the Reaches, before the Time of the Great Leaving

"The Forest Boy" - Moon as a young boy

"The Dead City" - Moon as a young man, after Saraseil

"Adaptation" - sometime later, at the old Indigo Cloud colony in the east

The Cloud Roads - two turns later

The Serpent Sea - eleven days later after the end of The Cloud Roads

The Siren Depths - two months after the end of The Serpent Sea

"Mimesis" - three months after the end of The Siren Depths

"Trading Lesson" - a month later

"The Falling World" - one turn since arriving at the Reaches colony. Jade, Chime and Balm go missing while on a trip to another court.

"The Dark Earth Below" - half a turn after the end of "The Falling World." Jade is about to have her clutch and the court is under attack.

The Edge of Worlds - one turn after "The Dark Earth Below"

The Harbors of the Sun - immediately after The Edge of Worlds


The Raksura Patreon with flash fiction about the Indigo Cloud Court is here: https://www.patreon.com/user?u=2458567

The Traveler's Guide to the Three Worlds is here: http://www.marthawells.com/wiki/index.php?title=Main_Page


Happy reading!

Book Recs and News

Tuesday, June 27th, 2017 09:49 am
marthawells: (Reading)
News: If you missed it yesterday, there are going to be two more Murderbot novellas for a total of four, and 2, 3, and 4 are all coming out next year.


***

(If you've been following my book rec and new book listing posts for a while, you may have noticed this already, but while most book lists emphasize books by popular straight white men, this one emphasizes everybody else. I include books by straight white men, but in about the same percentage that other book lists include everybody else. I also try to highlight books that are less well known.)

(I only link to one retail outlet in the book's listing, but most books are available at multiple outlets, like Kobo, iBooks, international Amazons, Barnes & Noble, etc. The short stories are usually on free online magazines.)


Short story: The White-throated Transmigrant by E. Lily Yu


* Miles Morales - A Spider Man Novel by Jason Reynolds
Miles Morales is just your average teenager. Dinner every Sunday with his parents, chilling out playing old-school video games with his best friend, Ganke, crushing on brainy, beautiful poet Alicia. He's even got a scholarship spot at the prestigious Brooklyn Visions Academy. Oh yeah, and he's Spider Man.


* Bright Thrones by Kate Elliott
An exciting e-novella set in the world of the New York Times bestselling Court of Fives, from World Fantasy Award finalist Kate Elliott!


* Drawing Dead by SM Reine
The vampire slayer is turning into a vampire? Over her dead body. Dana McIntyre has been bitten by a master vampire. She's infected with the venom. And after killing hundreds of vampires to keep Las Vegas safe, she'd rather die than turn.


* Kangaroo Too by Curtis C. Chen
On the way home from his latest mission, secret agent Kangaroo’s spacecraft is wrecked by a rogue mining robot. The agency tracks the bot back to the Moon, where a retired asteroid miner—code named “Clementine” —might have information about who’s behind the sabotage. Clementine will only deal with Jessica Chu, Kangaroo’s personal physician and a former military doctor once deployed in the asteroid belt. Kangaroo accompanies Jessica as a courier, smuggling Clementine’s payment of solid gold in the pocket universe that only he can use.


* The Strange Case of the Alchemist's Daughter by Theodora Goss
Mary Jekyll, alone and penniless following her parents’ death, is curious about the secrets of her father’s mysterious past. One clue in particular hints that Edward Hyde, her father’s former friend and a murderer, may be nearby, and there is a reward for information leading to his capture...a reward that would solve all of her immediate financial woes. But her hunt leads her to Hyde’s daughter, Diana, a feral child left to be raised by nuns. With the assistance of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson, Mary continues her search for the elusive Hyde, and soon befriends more women, all of whom have been created through terrifying experimentation: Beatrice Rappaccini, Catherin Moreau, and Justine Frankenstein.


* Mapping the Interior by Stephen Graham Jones
Blackfeet author Stephen Graham Jones brings readers a spine-tingling Native American horror novella. Walking through his own house at night, a fifteen-year-old thinks he sees another person stepping through a doorway. Instead of the people who could be there, his mother or his brother, the figure reminds him of his long-gone father, who died mysteriously before his family left the reservation. When he follows it he discovers his house is bigger and deeper than he knew.


* Shattered Minds by Laura Lam
Carina used to be one of the best biohackers in Pacifica. But when she worked for Sudice and saw what the company's experiments on brain recording were doing to their subjects, it disturbed her—especially because she found herself enjoying giving pain and contemplating murder. She quit and soon grew addicted to the drug Zeal, spending most of her waking moments in a horror-filled dream world where she could act out her depraved fantasies without actually hurting anyone.


* The Last Good Man by Linda Nagata
carred by war, in pursuit of truth: Army veteran True Brighton left the service when the development of robotic helicopters made her training as a pilot obsolete. Now she works at Requisite Operations, a private military company established by friend and former Special Ops soldier Lincoln Han. ReqOp has embraced the new technologies. Robotics, big data, and artificial intelligence are all tools used to augment the skills of veteran warfighters-for-hire. But the tragedy of war is still measured in human casualties, and when True makes a chance discovery during a rescue mission, old wounds are ripped open. She’s left questioning what she knows of the past, and resolves to pursue the truth, whatever the cost.


* Mars Girls by Mary Turzillo
What Nanoannie and Kapera find at the Smythe’s Pharm is more than the girls bargained for. The hab has been trashed and there are dead bodies buried in the backyard! If that wasn’t bad enough, the girls crash the rover and Kapera gets kidnapped by Facers who claim her parents are murderers! Between Renegade Nuns, Facers, and corp geeks, Nanoannie and Kapera don’t know who to trust or where to go. Kapera only wants to find her parents so they can get to Earth Orbitals and she can be treated for her leukemia. Nanoannie wants to help her friend and experience a little bit of Mars before selling her contract to the first corp that offers to buy it.
marthawells: (The Serpent Sea)
Yesterday was the anniversary of the day I found out The Cloud Roads sold to Night Shade, after two years of visiting and being rejected by various publishers.

So I posted: https://marthawells.tumblr.com/post/162255829557/something-else-ive-been-meaning-to-post-the The entry on the Three Worlds from Worlds Imagined: The Maps of Imaginary Places Collection for the Cushing Library exhibit.

I got my author's copies of the trade paperback of The Harbors of the Sun on Friday, so it should start showing up soon. The hardcover will probably be a week or so later, and the ebook will drop on July 4.


***


Murderbot got a really nice review on The Verge: https://www.theverge.com/2017/6/25/15837368/all-systems-red-murderbot-chronicles-martha-wells-book-review

Our protagonist got its name after killing a bunch of company employees on another planet a couple of years ago, but while it has a bit of a bloodstained history, this isn’t Hal from 2001: A Space Odyssey. It’s a dour security bot that likes to watch steamy soap operas, and would rather be left alone. After its murderous rampage, it hacked its own governor module, not wanting to fall victim once again to hardware manufactured by a company that cuts corners to save a buck.


Ann Leckie also liked Murderbot:

http://www.annleckie.com/2017/06/23/recent-reading/

I’m not kidding, I can almost guarantee that my readers will enjoy this. I have already pre-ordered volume 2, which is out in January.


***


The Authors Auction for the victims of Grenfell Tower is going until June 27. My item is https://authorsforgrenfelltower.com/2017/06/23/signed-copy-of-the-murderbot-diaries-all-systems-red-by-martha-wells/

and the whole list of items is

https://authorsforgrenfelltower.com/items-for-auction-2/


***


If you need a quick break today, "Night at the Opera" is still free at Podcastle in text and audio:

http://podcastle.org/index.php?s=night+at+the+opera

It's a prequel to The Death of the Necromancer


***


I'm doing a signing with Rachel Caine at Murder By The Book in Houston, TX, on Saturday, July 15, at 4:30, and you can order our books and get them signed and personalized and shipped to you: http://www.murderbooks.com/event/wells-caine
marthawells: (Miko)
This has been a week of extreme highs and lows. The high points were awesome but the low points are...low.

I've got news I can't share yet so this is kind of a boring post. I need to get back to my book rec posts but Fridays are kind of a bad day for them.

We were supposed to have a hurricane but it turned and is now torturing a different part of the country.

Oh, I did a Reddit r/Fantasy AMA yesterday, and got a great question on Worldbuilding:

Question: One of my favorite things about your books is the incredible detail and authenticity to the cultures and societies you create. I've read City Of Bones and your Raksura books and I am always immediately engaged when the characters travel to a new city. The residents, architecture, customs, languages, and overall presentation feel well rooted and historical. It really adds an incredible flavor to your writing and inspires me to improve my own.

Are you willing to describe the process in which you develop a new city? When you sit down to create a new location, how you start the vision and do you have a system in how you begin to add layers of detail until the city/town/society feels authentic?

Me: Thank you so much!

I use different methods for different types of book. For the Ile-Rien books, where the locations are based more on real-world places, I did a lot of research into cities in similar cultures, climates, environments as my imaginary city. For the Raksura books, I tried to think of a neat setting for a city, then tried to make it as weird and extreme as possible. Like the Turning City, Keres-gedon, which started out as just a camp in the mountains.

Basically it's a process of coming up with an element you want in your city, like canals. You look at cities with canals, like Venice, and maybe Angkor Wat. What are the canals used for? Transportation, a reservoir, entertainment, defense, etc. You think about how the environment and climate of your city is going to affect your canals. Can they freeze over? Are they affected by drought? Sewage? Plant growth? Underwater monster issues? Etc. Why or why not are they affected by these things? Once you make all those decisions, you decide how they affect the inhabitants of the city, their culture, their everyday life. It can be simple or complicated, and ideally, it leads to ideas that can further characterization and plot. And the big thing to remember is that the reader doesn't need to know everything you know about your canal system. They'll be able to infer a lot from the bits and pieces they see as your characters move through the story, and the sense that the city is operating by a logical system is more important than knowing the exact details.

I also don't usually figure out too many of the details of my settings in advance, since I'm going to concentrate mainly on the parts my characters are interacting with. Like most of the city may be sketched in, but the characters are going to need this little train system and this temple hospital, so those bits are going to get more attention and development. Also keep in mind that cities change over time, with new buildings, new roads, and what stays in place and what gets built over or torn down all say things about the people who live there.

It also helps not to set too many boundaries. You never want to tell readers that there's nothing over the mountains, because it's going to make the world feel closed in, like a puddle instead of a huge mysterious ocean. And if you keep writing in this setting, you may eventually need those empty places to put things in.

I hope that helps!


***

Also:

I have a signed copy of The Murderbot Diaries: All Systems Red in the Authors for Grenfell Tower Auction: https://authorsforgrenfelltower.com/2017/06/23/signed-copy-of-the-murderbot-diaries-all-systems-red-by-martha-wells/

There are tons of other great items up for auction to benefit the tower fire victims. Please check it out or pass it on.

r/Fantasy AMA

Thursday, June 22nd, 2017 09:00 am
marthawells: (The Serpent Sea)
FYI, I'm doing an Ask Me Anything on reddit Fantasy today (June 22): https://www.reddit.com/r/Fantasy/comments/6it1cf/hi_everybody_this_is_sff_writer_martha_wells_and/
marthawells: (Default)
Trying to get photos to post here still seems really wonky, so here's a link to a tumblr post with a quote from The Murderbot Diaries: Artificial Condition: https://marthawells.tumblr.com/post/162086407182/for-book-quote-wednesday-bookqw-on-twitter

This was for Book Quote Wednesday on Twitter.

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