marthawells: (Default)
Today is Juneteenth!

Juneteenth is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States.

From its Galveston, Texas origin in 1865, the observance of June 19th as the African American Emancipation Day has spread across the United States and beyond.

There are some events going on in Galveston, Texas, one of my absolutely favorite places, where it was first celebrated.


The Chesley Award Nominees for SF/F art were announced and Matthew Stewart was nominated for the cover of The Cloud Roads! Yay! That link has the list of all nominees, plus the nominated artwork. IO9 listed their favorite pieces here.

Kitten report:

The kitten's name is now Jack. He has to go to the vet this morning to get the rest of his shots, then I have to do all the errands I didn't do this weekend.

I signed up for the Clarion West Write-a-thon to support the Clarion West Writers Workshop, and my sponsor page is here. I'll try to write up a post with my progress and post of snippet of something when I get a chance.

I also really need to do a book rec post.


Malinda Lo: YA Pride: Change Without Blame
Over Memorial Day weekend, I attended WisCon, the feminist science fiction convention, in Madison, Wisconsin. I did a couple of panels there, including one called "De-Gaying and Whitewashing: What Publishing Trends Mean for Writers."
marthawells: Cover for the Cloud Roads, Art by Matthew Stewart (The Cloud Roads 2)
The DDoS attack sort of sank the whole Clarion-Write-a-Thon snippet thing I was doing, and I did not actually finish my writing goal as I had to stop work on the third book to do revisions on The Serpent Sea. (Thanks very much to everyone who donated! I know Clarion appreciates your donations a lot.)

I finished the revision off yesterday, and it is a much better book with over 4000 words added and a lot of corrections made. We went to a new local brewpub to celebrate, and I had a mixed berry cider which was delicious, and tasty fish tacos.

The Serpent Sea snippet )

Oh, and Got to see a scan of the great review that The Cloud Roads got in the July/Aug issue of Interzone by Juliet E. McKenna. Very much improved last week for me. Here's a quote:

Thus the world is made all the more convincing for the reader, and all the more alien, by Wells's finely tuned instinct for what to explain, and how, always in keeping with Moon's viewpoint, and what to simply show without further clarification; other species with blue skin or horns, treelings, skylings, and waterlings, some sentient, some not, some with magic... It reminds me of the SF/F fantasy I read as a teen, long before YA was categorized. Those books explored adult concepts without 'adult content'; the complexity of morality and the potential, uncaring harshness of life. This story's conclusion satisfies on all those counts as well as leaving me eager for the sequel.
marthawells: (Stargate)
New post by me on The Night Bazaar: Don't Be That Guy, about arguing with reviews.

Some people get addicted very quickly to internet attention and sympathy, and are prepared to kill and eat just about anybody to get that attention and sympathy. Don’t be one of those people. And don’t play into the hands of one of those people by responding to their effort to kill and eat you.

I'm about to start working on the last revision for The Serpent Sea, so here are:


Another snippet post for the Clarion West Write-a-thon. And thanks very much to the people who donated so far!

The Serpent Sea )

And a long one from Wheel of the Infinite:

Wheel of the Infinite )
marthawells: (Ardeth Bey)
I'm still behind on comments, but here's some things:

Please, please, please pass this on:

The Romance Relief auction on ebay for for writer L.A. Banks ends on the 13th. L.A. Banks has late stage adrenal cancer and donations to help are badly needed.

The items being offered include signed books, ads for books on popular web sites, critiques for writers, etc. And there is a signed copy of The Cloud Roads by me.



This is another snippet post for the Clarion West Write-a-thon. And thanks very much to the people who donated so far!

Here's one from The Serpent Sea

The Serpent Sea )

A snippet from Wheel of the Infinite:

Wheel of the Infinite )
marthawells: (Stargate)
From [personal profile] kateelliott: Something Greater: An Epic Discussion of Epic Fantasy, Part 1 by Jeremy L. C. Jones He did interviews with 26 writers, 13 male and 13 female, on why they write epic fantasy.

Common Dreams: The Movement to Abolish Corporate Personhood


This is another snippet post for the Clarion West Write-a-thon:

From The Serpent Sea, second book in The Cloud Roads series. Moon meets a queen that's even bigger and scarier than Pearl.

The Serpent Sea )

This one is from The Wizard Hunters, with Tremaine being Tremaine, with Florian realizing for the first time that her friend is a little different. Again, 2003 was not a good time to publish a steampunkish novel. And the cover was beautiful art, but looked a bit more SF than fantasy.

The Wizard Hunters )
marthawells: (Reading)
I spent most of yesterday with a friend at the doctor's office, waiting for appointments that went unexpectedly long. It's weird how tiring it is to sit around in a waiting room. I brought my laptop and worked, but it didn't exactly involve heavy lifting or ditch digging, so I have no idea why it wore me out.


I did a guest post on SF Signal on my NASA tour: Martha Wells: NASA Up Close and Personal, for SF/F Writers and Editors

Diversity in YA Fiction: the Diversify Your Summer Reading Challenge!


This is another longish snippet post for the Clarion West Write-a-thon:

One from The Serpent Sea, second book in The Cloud Roads series. More Raksuran gender politics:

The Serpent Sea )

And one from City of Bones:

City of Bones )
marthawells: Cover for the Cloud Roads, Art by Matthew Stewart (The Cloud Roads 2)
This is another longish snippet post for the Clarion West Write-a-thon:

One from The Serpent Sea, second book in The Cloud Roads series. This is a bit of Raksuran gender politics:

The Serpent Sea )

And one from The Ships of Air. This is aboard the Queen Ravenna, a giant steam ocean liner carrying refugees across the sea in another dimension.

The Ships of Air )
marthawells: (pic#)
This is from The Serpent Sea, a sexy bit:

The Serpent Sea )

and from The Gate of Gods, one of my favorite bits. This is a long snippet, because I like the whole sequence so much. There's a lot of stuff in this last novel of the trilogy that I had so much fun with and really loved writing. It's too bad the three books were too early for the steampunk surge.

The Gate of Gods )
marthawells: (Indeed)
Yesterday I spent catching up on everything, finishing off a couple of blog posts that I owe, worked on my Doctor Who essay a bit more, and got about 775 words toward my Clarion West Write-a-Thon goal. I didn't try to count any of the re-writing I did last week, since I took out almost as much as I wrote. I'll do another snippet post later today.

One of the highlights of the con for me was the little girl who won the masquerade. She came as the Book Fairy, decked out in book covers, and had the cover of The Cloud Roads around her neck:

photo - the Book Fairy )

Friday I had the Opening Ceremonies, plus:

Not So Happily Ever After - Alexis Glynn Latner (M), Derly Ramirez, Martha Wells, Rhonda Eudaly, Stina Leicht
We talked about the real endings of fairy tales and the variants, the one where Hansel and Gretal are actually captured by the Devil and he tries to bleed Hansel to death on a "sawhorse," the real story of Sleeping Beauty, etc. I tried to remember the one which has a second half that was taken out over time, that when the princess is saved by the prince and taken back to his kingdom, she has to defeat his evil (mother or stepmother or wife) and got through various trials to save him. And also what lessons they were trying to teach, how the changes effected that. I also recommended Thorns, the first short story I ever sold back in 1995, and is a retelling of Sleeping Beauty from the witch's perspective.


No WEMs Allowed: Multiculturalism Steampunk - Alexis Glatner, Kathy Thornton, Martha Wells, O.M. Grey (M), Mel White
We talked about setting SF or fantasy steampunk in other countries, other cultures, other times. I'm still a big advocate for Ancient Egyptian steampunk. I think it would be awesome. And we also got into steampunk set in India and Ancient China, and talked a bit about the exploration fleet that China sent out at one time, pointing out that steampunk is often about adventurous exploration, and that a steampunk fantasy or alt history starring Zheng He would be awesome.

I also did the Guest of Honor interview, an autographing, and a reading (I read from The Serpent Sea, so it was a pretty full day.


Researching Things That Don't Exist - Alexis Glynn Llatner (M), Martha Wells, Linda Donahue, Julia Mandala
We talked about research as a way to help you create fantasy settings and cultures, that knowing what the real thing is like makes the flights of fancy more real, and how research spurs your imagination. I recommended Atlas Obscura as a great place to get ideas and get your creative thinking going.

World in a Box, Just Add Water - Martha Wells (M), Kerry Tolan, Linda Donahue
This was a panel on worldbuilding, and we talked about where you start, how far you go (leaving spaces open for later development), not putting up boundaries to the reader's imagination. That again knowing how real things work helps you learn how to build fantastic things. About having a structure that is logical and internally consistent, even though that logic is not our Earth logic and does not use our physics, and bears no resemblance to the way things work in the real world.

And that was it!
marthawells: (pic#)
I picked fairly long snippets, since I'm not sure how much I'll be able to post for the rest of the week.

One from the first chapter of The Serpent Sea, which should be coming out from Night Shade Books early next year:

The Serpent Sea )

And one for the people who wanted random bits from my other books: This is from The Death of the Necromancer, which came out from Avon Eos in 1998, before steampunk was popular, and was a Nebula-nominee.

The Death of the Necromancer )
marthawells: (Zoe)
Many Things:

First Thing: My email started working late yesterday morning so I should be caught up now. Also, hoping we'll get rain today or tomorrow. There have been a couple of forest fires in the area.

T2: This is going to be a crazy busy week for me because I'm going to be guest of honor at ApolloCon this weekend in Houston. We will all be having lots of fun without you. (Unless you're coming too, then we'll be having fun with you.) I don't know how much time I'll have for posting, but I'll try to do a few.

T3: The Clarion West Write-a-Thon: my goal is 15,000 words on the third Cloud Roads book, and yesterday I tore apart and re-wrote chapter 1 and part of 2. I have no idea what my word count was, because I took out a lot, wrote two new scenes, and re-arranged a lot.

T4: the snippet poll. Snippets from The Serpent Sea are winning by a large margin, but a lot of people also wanted random snippets from other books, so I think I'll do both. I'll try to do a snippet post later today when I'm more awake.

T5: Links:

SF Signal: Girl Cooties: A Personal History by Judith Tarr Judith talks about gender and publishing.

CBC News: Canadian Rioters Tried to Burn a Chapters Bookstore

Greg van Eekhout: The color of The Boy at the End of the World
I am multiracial. My skin is light brown. My features are a mix of, well, Dutch and Indonesian. People often don’t know what to make of me. When people see me, sometimes they see a person of color. Sometimes they see an Asian person. (Indonesia is in Asia, so that makes sense.) Sometimes they see a Latino person. Sometimes they see a white guy with a tan. When people don’t know what you are, they will sometimes project their own expectations on you.

The auction to help with author L.A. Banks' medical expenses starts today.

Cynthia Leitich Smith: It Gets Better: Authors & Illustrators Unite an "It gets better" vid from childrens and YA authors and illustrators.

Austin YNN: Copper thieves shut down Austin library indefinitely
Gillum said the Ruiz branch caters to more than 30-thousand Austinites a month.

"We're just filled with kids and teenagers normally all through the summer while they're away from school," Gillum said. "Not this year."

marthawells: (Stargate)
First off, courtesy of dreamhost, my email is down. So if you're emailing me, I can't tell.


The Cloud Roads, and many other lovely books, are on The Book Smugglers' List of the Best Books of 2011 So Far

Charles Saunders has a new book out! Damballa It's an adventure pulp story set in 1930s Harlem.

Liz Hand linked to NPR: 'Good Stuff': Cary Grant's Daughter On Growing Up

Clarion West Write-a-Thon:

I've signed up for the Clarion West Write-a-Thon here. You can see the other writers listed here

Read about what Clarion West is here. Clarion West is a nonprofit literary organization and is committed to equal opportunity. Although there are fine science fiction and fantasy writers of all ethnicities, races, and genders, historically the field has reflected the same prejudices found in the culture around it, leading to proportionately fewer successful writers of color and women writers than white male writers. Within the limitations of the workshop, Clarion West is dedicated to improving those proportions.

The goal of the Write-a-Thon is: Our goal now is to get 270 Write-a-thon donors. We'll gladly accept donations of any amount. Now till July 29 you can support Write-a-thon authors doing their best by donating to Clarion West when they accomplish their goals: help them, help the workshop, and help yourself as you sponsor the creation of more writing you'll want to read.

My writing goal is to write at least 15,000 words on the draft of the novel I'm currently working on. It's the next book in the Cloud Roads series, set after The Serpent Sea. (I didn't get much done yesterday because I was trying not to beat a scanner to death.)

My dilemma is that people are supposed to post snippets of their writing to encourage donations, but I don't want to spoil readers on the third book when the second book isn't out yet. So I've made a poll:

Poll #7310 Which Snippets?
This poll is closed.
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 4

Would you like to see snippets from:

View Answers

The Cloud Roads
1 (25.0%)

The Serpent Sea
3 (75.0%)

The Third Book Because I Like Spoilers
0 (0.0%)

Random Stuff from Martha's Other Books and Stories
0 (0.0%)

Random Stuff from Random People's Books and Stories
0 (0.0%)

Whatever it is, I'll post it behind an lj cut so people can skip it at will.


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