24. November 2015 10:03
I am home from OryCon and SF Authorfest 9. I had a fabulous time. It was so much fun. In lieu of content, here is a Bubble and Squeek.
Article: Mind Meld: More Children’s Movies that Scared the Crap Out of Us.
Podcast: LIMETOWN. If you aren't listening to this podcast, you are missing out. It reminds me of American Elsewhere and Night Vale.
Review: A Lovely review of Jazz Age Cthulhu and "Dreams of a Thousand Young" from Hauntology. I really am fond of this novelette.
For the Melissa Allen section of Bubble and Squeek...
Article: Over on Wag the Fox: Characters with a mind of their own. AKA why the sequel, Never Let Me Leave, exists.
Article: Why a Bat? Over on Damien Walter's blog, I discuss why Melissa Allen use a baseball bat when fighting monsters.
Podcast: SF Spotlight Radio from 14 Nov 2015. I talk about a lot of things. Mostly the Melissa Allen series.
17. November 2015 08:30
I am at OryCon in Portland, OR this weekend. If I'm not at a panel, I will be at the Apocalypse Ink Productions booth in the Dealers Room. Come say hello, buy a book, get it signed, and pick up my convention story card! Sunday early evening is SF Authorfest 9, hosted by the Cedar Hills Powell's Bookstore.
Fri Nov 20 4:00:pm, Sunstone
How to Blurb Your Novel
We all need them, we all hate them. Summing up our books may be harder than writing them in the first place! Learn techniques to write compelling book descriptions (aka "blurbs"), and hook readers.
Sat Nov 21 2:00:pm, Salem
The Softer Side of SF
What is "social science fiction"? How have authors used ideas from "soft" sciences like sociology, anthropology, and linguistics to craft convincing future scenarios, telling fascinating stories while shedding light on current human problems? Discuss authors past and present (LeGuin, etc.) who specialize in this.
Sat Nov 21 4:00:pm, Salmon
Broad Universe Rapid Fire Reading
Join members of Broad Universe--an organization dedicated to women in genre fiction—for a whole bunch of really short readings crammed into one hour.
Sat Nov 21 6:00:pm, Salem
Writing and Art for the RPG Industry
A how-to workshop on what it is like to work for the RPG industry.
Sun Nov 22 11:00:am, Sunstone
What should the relationship between publishers and writers look like, as well as writers and readers? Both situations require respect. What does that look like?
Sun Nov 22 12:00:pm, Sunstone
Writing in Other People's Worlds
The fine art of franchise writing: working with established universes like Star Trek, Star Wars and more—including the new Kindle Worlds licensed fan fiction program.
Sun Nov 22 4:00-6:00:pm, Powell’s Bookstore, Cedar Hills
SF Author Fest 9
Come see 30 authors in their natural habitat—a bookstore! Chat, buy books, and get them signed.
16. November 2015 12:02
Greetings, and thanks, Jenn, for the most gracious invitation to Tell You… something about my writing!
Most people know the saying “write what you know,” but I prefer another common one: “write what you want to read.”
I read a pretty eclectic mix that crosses almost all styles and genres. And even though science fiction and fantasy dominate, I like to believe my writing includes a great deal of variety that runs the gamut as well. But that doesn’t preclude favorites, or preferences, or recurring themes—nor include some themes and subjects I absolutely avoid.
So . . .
A few things creep into almost all of my stories. Like cats. They’re a necessity, right? Sometimes dogs or horses, or goliaths (look it up, I dare you), or fictional furballs, but—naturally—cats rule. Ahem. All right. Putting aside the aside…
Especially in my science fiction, I infuse it with my love of all of nature.
Two of my series are diametrically opposed in that one shows people who eschew technology; and the other, people who strive to stay on the cutting edge. Yet, even the former appreciate the value of technology, and the latter still cherish nature. For example, they classify their most powerful ships as “apex” and name them after their world’s most powerful predators. Their tiny fightercraft class names: “bee”, “hornet”, and “wasp.”
Which brings me to yet another series that combines both. Exploration, a behemoth ship the size of a small planet, carries a crew of five thousand. Over the hundred-year voyage to another galaxy, that number will grow to five million—or more. Science unequalled in all of history enabled the engineers to construct the fantastic vessel, the vanguard of a fleet of three hundred. That accomplishment pales next to the true masterpiece: The Core.
The heart of the ship—actually, almost fifty percent of the ship—contains something far more spectacular: a wilderness. Almost ten million square kilometers of pristine wilderness teeming with wildlife. Untouched and self-sustaining as if it were on the surface of a planet orbiting a star. And each ship of the fleet will house a distinct biosphere: completely subterranean, or oceanic, or all swirling atmosphere like Jupiter or Saturn.
Peace. Hope. Cooperation. Upward and onward. That mindset resonates with me. Science and technology help and sustain, rather than destroy or run amuck. Combine that with “intrinsic value” regarding nature, not natural “resources.” Those stances resonate with me.
Themes I avoid: nihilism, pessimist, grit, hopelessness. If you want apocalyptic or post-apocalyptic, keep searching. Not that tons of fans don’t love the dark side. Nothing wrong with that at all. But I write more toward humor, and optimism, and pulling together rather than apart.
Not that Bad Stuff doesn’t happen. Without it, no novel. In this case, a very determined group wants to stop the intrepid explorers from even beginning, let alone finishing, their journey. But you won’t find gloom or doom or soap opera. I hope you will find diverse, appealing characters and an exciting, suspenseful adventure.
Fly off to a far-flung galaxy, and take A Little Piece of Home along for the trip. Available in print and eBook editions.
To see a complete bibliography with all the covers, as well as updates on upcoming works, please visit http://BluetrixBooks.wordpress.com
10. November 2015 09:01
Book two of the Melissa Allen series, NEVER LET ME LEAVE, has been released! I'm really happy with the series. The first book, NEVER LET ME SLEEP, is getting great reviews.
What would you do if you found yourself locked in an underground lab with a murderous alien hunting you? Melissa Allen and her new friends know exactly how it feels. With no help from the outside and time running out, it’s up to Melissa to keep herself and the other teens safe. How can she do that when she’s not sure who she can trust?
Someone in the lab helped that alien escape. Someone human.
NEVER LET ME LEAVE almost didn't happen. This is why it did.