Stargate Monuments


Martha Wells

The Invisible Woman


Stories of the Raksura vol II

Stories of the Raksura vol. II: The Dead City & The Dark Earth Below will be released into the wild in just a couple of weeks on Tuesday June 2, in trade paperback and ebook. It's also being released in audiobook (by Christopher Kipiniak, who's been the performer for all the Raksura books so far!) but I'm not sure if that will be done by June 2 or if it'll be a little later.

You can preorder it at all these places:

Amazon US, Barnes and Noble, Mysterious Galaxy, Powell's, The Tattered Cover, Chapter Indigo, Books-a-Million, Book Depository, Amazon Canada, Amazon UK, Amazon DE, Amazon Spain, Amazon France, and all other Amazon sites, or look for it in an independent bookstore in the US through Indiebound.

ebook: Kindle US, Barnes & Noble Nook US, Kobo, iTunes, Kindle Canada, Kindle UK, Kindle DE, Kindle Spain, Kindle France, and all other Amazon sites.

Excerpt from The Dark Earth BelowCollapse )

Dr. Orpheus


On May 22-25, I'll be at Comicpalooza in Houston. It's a great con, with a ton of panels on writing and art and costuming and film and pretty much everything you can think of, on top of a massive convention floor with artists, dealers of all kinds, celebrity signings, robots, 3d printers, circus acts, etc.

(If you decide to go, I recommend that you get your pass online and then pick it up as early as possible. On Saturday last year there were huge lines to get in.)

Here's my schedule. Last year there were book signings at the Barnes and Noble table, but I don't know if they're going to do that this year.

5:30-6:30 Fifty Shades of Fae: Fairies in Fiction (F) 03-350B
How have contemporary fantasy authors used the classical folklore and literature of fairies to create modern stories? What are some of the best stories involving the faerie otherworld?
Martha Wells, Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam, Raven Raye, C. D. Lewis, Janet Wrenn (M)

11:30-12:30 Writing Tips and Tricks: How to Create Believable Worlds (CBW) 01-350A
World-building in fiction can be a challenge. How much is enough? How much is too much? Authors share techniques for creating believable, immersive worlds in fiction writing.
P. J. Hoover, Steve Bein (M), Martha Wells, Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam, Rachael Acks, Kerrelyn Sparks

2:30-3:30 Tips for Aspiring Writers (CBW) 23-352B
New to writing? Not sure where to start? Come and learn from published authors, who will share tips, dos and don'ts, and personal stories about how they began their writing careers.
Patrice Sarath, Martha Wells, Rachael Acks (M), Rachel Caine, Mercedes Lackey, Larry Dixon

2:30-3:30 Business 101 for Writers (CBW) 05-350C
Writing is more than just finishing your short story or novel. Come learn from pro writers about the business side of writing: budgeting, networking, website creation, promotional materials, branding and more.
Martha Wells, Jonathan Maberry, Kimberly Frost, Jake Kerr (M), K. M. Tolan

John and Teyla - Uh Oh


I've been doing a quickie edit/revise of the book I just finished before I send it in to my agent, and that means doing about 100 manuscript pages per day, so I've feeling a bit swamped. And it's a longer one, about 140,000 words.


The YA fantasy I co-wrote with Aaron de Orive, Blade Singer, is on sale for $2.99 at Barnes and Noble and Amazon


* Representing Marginalized Voices in Historical Fiction and Fantasy by Joyce Chng, David Anthony Durham, Kari Sperring, and Vanessa Rose Phin

* An interview with author Judith Tarr

* How to vote No Award in the Hugos

New Books

* The Book of Phoenix by Nnedi Okorafor
A prequel to the highly acclaimed, World Fantasy Award-winning novel, Who Fears Death, it features the rise of another of Nnedi Okorafor’s powerful, memorable, superhuman women.

* Apex by Ramez Naam
Against this backdrop, a new breed of post-human children are growing into their powers. And a once-dead scientist, driven mad by her torture, is closing in on her plans to seize planet's electronic systems, and re-forge everything in her image.

* The Venusian Gambit: Book Three of the Daedalus Series by Michael J. Martinez
In the year 2135, dangerous alien life forms freed in the destruction of Saturn's moon Enceladus are making their way towards Earth. A task force spearheaded by Lt. Cmdr. Shaila Jain is scrambling to beat them there while simultaneously trying to save crewmember Stephane Durand, who was infected during the mission to Saturn and is now controlled by a form of life intent on reopening a transdimensional rift and destroying the human race.

* The first chapter of Charm by C.L. Hellisen


Avengers Friday

This weekend I still have a lot of stuff to do, but I'm also hoping to be able to see the new Avengers movie as soon as possible.


Con or Bust, which helps people of color/non-white people attend SFF conventions, end Sunday May 3.

I've posted four entries, with a set of audio CDs for the Wheel of the Infinite audiobook, a signed set of the Emilie books, a signed set of all the Raksura books, and a signed hardcover of Star Wars: Razor's Edge. There are tons of other items to bid on (books, jewelry, knitted goods, art, etc), so check it out if you have a chance.


Good Raksura news! Christopher Kipiniak will be narrator again for the audiobook of Stories of the Raksura vol II: The Dead City & The Dark Earth Below. He's narrated all the Raksura audiobooks and he's fabulous, so I'm so glad he's doing this one too.


All the collections from the Six by Six Kickstarter have now been released! If you joined the kickstarter you should have gotten all your goodies by now. If you think you are missing something, email Brad, the kickstarter admin.

This was a really fun project and I'm really glad I participated.

If you didn't sign up for the Kickstarter, you can still get my story collection Between Worlds: the Collected Ile-Rien and Cineth Stories, with the new The Death of the Necromancer story, as an ebook on Kobo, Kindle, iTunes, Nook, etc.

And always, if you enjoyed something I wrote, and you have time, please consider leaving a review on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, GoodReads, etc. Those reviews really do help the books show up more on those sites, and it's a great thing to do for any author.



Still waiting to get our electrical work done, but there's been several big thunderstorms so the electricians are really backed up with work. And the other day we had a giant funnel cloud wandering around town. It never touched down (they aren't officially tornadoes until the land and start destroying stuff) but still, not fun.

Years ago when I was living in a fourplex at the edge of big field and wooded area, a tornado came right over us. Seen from directly below, they look like the sky is doing something terrible and wrong and terrifying.

It's a busy week for me. I've finished the first draft of a book and am revising it, plus I'm writing a short story for an anthology, plus a couple of guest blog posts. The story isn't due until the end of the summer, but it's less stressful if I do a draft as soon as I can and then let it percolate a bit.

Book recs

* Darkened Blade by Kelly McCullough
It’s been nine long years since the death of his patron, Namara, and exalted assassin Aral Kingslayer desperately misses the thrill and glory of being a higher power of justice. Now he is haunted by the ghosts of the past—and by the ghost of the lost goddess herself.

* Of Noble Family by Mary Robinette Kowal
Jane and Vincent's sense of peril is screaming out for them to flee, but Vincent cannot stand to leave an estate connected with his family in such a condition. They have survived many grand and terrifying adventures in their time, but this one will test their skills and wits more than any they have ever encountered before, this time with a new life hanging in the balance. Mary Robinette Kowal's Of Noble Family is the final book of the acclaimed Glamourist Histories.

* Aunty Lee's Deadly Specials by Ovidia Yu
Rosie "Aunty" Lee, the feisty widow and amateur sleuth and proprietor of Singapore's best-loved home-cooking restaurant, is back in another delectable, witty mystery involving scandal and murder among the city's elite.
Just read this one. It was like if Miss Marple was Chinese and lived in Singapore, I really enjoyed it.

Stargate Monuments

Fall of the House of Usher, Part Million

If you've been following this blog for a while you may know we have had a lot of work done to our house in response to various problems (foundation work, plumbing, etc). At this point its basically had most of its insides replaced. (It was very solidly built - by amateurs - in 1969.)

So a couple of weeks ago I smelled gas in the kitchen. The emergency gas company people came and said the hose and valve for the gas stove were incorrect and leaking and needed to be replaced. So I got an appointment with our regular plumber to come do that. As they were making the repairs, (I dread the words, "Boss, I found something weird.") they realized that when they touched the stove and the gas line, they felt an electrical charge. This is really bad, because electrified gas lines can explode. Plumbers recommended an electrician and ran out the door. I called the electrician and they showed up within an hour (which was pretty fast considering there had been a giant storm the night before and they were slammed with calls).

There was a lot of worried searching by the very calm and methodical electrician, who finally traced it to the outlet the stove was plugged into, which was apparently completely jacked and had been since before we moved in. (And the breakers for it didn't work either, so we're just lucky we're not dead, basically.) (The electricians called it a "handyman special.") So that got fixed, but he also found that the pole where our electrical service is connected to the house is actually being pulled out of the house and that needs to be fixed Real Soon.

So I had them come out today and do an estimate, and it's not as bad as I thought, in that we may get out of the this whole situation for around $1000, and the stove is working again. Though that's a $1000 I wasn't planning on spending.



Audio story: Toasted Cake 145: Boneshadow by Jessica Reisman, read by Alex C. Renwick

New Book: Edge of Dreams by Diana Pharaoh Francis

My Stuff:

* Between Worlds: the Collected Ile-Rien and Cineth Stories is out now in ebook

* Stories of the Raksura vol II: The Dead City & The Dark Earth Below is coming out in June.

Wheel Icon 2

Con or Bust Auction Starts Today

Con or Bust, which helps people of color/non-white people attend SFF conventions, starts today!.

I've posted four entries, with a set of audio CDs for the Wheel of the Infinite audiobook, a signed set of the Emilie books, a signed set of all the Raksura books, and a signed hardcover of Star Wars: Razor's Edge.

There are all kinds of items up for auction, including signed books, jewelry, etc. Items are still being submitted for the auction, so if you don't see something you want to bid on, keep checking!


Raksura Answers

pilgrim3 asked: tool use by the Aeriat. I know that the Arbora use tools (anvils, etc., have been mentioned), but it seems rare that the Aeriat use tools at all. Is not using tools the norm for them? Or are there exceptions lurking in future books?

And an odd question - what is your next favorite race to write about in the 3 Worlds setting?

They do when they need to, but it's more from necessity, where the Arbora always used tools for things like making their living spaces more comfortable, making art, etc. The Arbora make all the material goods for the colony because they put a high priority on both having those things and the effort and talent it takes to make them. Without the Arbora, the Aeriat probably would only bother with the minimum they needed to survive.

Favorite race other than the Raksura: it might be the Kek, because they're a lot of fun to work with, because they're very different from the Raksura, and they're very different from humans, too. I ought to do a short story from the Kek's perspective, at some point.

Stargate Monuments

Good News and Various

YAY!!!! I just got a great Publishers Weekly review for Stories of the Raksura: The Dead City & The Dark Earth Below! "The Raksura world features innovative and alien creatures; Wells thinks far outside the humanoid fantasy box. The line between animal and person is drawn extremely thin, and the power structure among the races resembles nature more than it resembles any human civilization. With a strong sense of adventure, horror, and mystery, this is an enjoyable read for fantasy fans seeking a new series to sample."

I also got an invite to be on the WorldCon program, so I decided to go ahead and bite the bullet and go. (Bite the bank account, actually, because the hotels are hella expensive this year.) I have a roommate so it shouldn't be too bad.

Writing ramble

One thing I've noticed is I still have an occasional plotting problem which I think of as getting ahead of myself and leaving the characters behind. When I trying to move the characters through a sequence of events because that's what I need to have happen, and it's just not working, because I'm not considering whether 1) the characters are actually going to want to do these things at this point 2) these things are or are not priorities for them at this point. These things have to happen, I just have to make sure the characters' motivations are lined up first and that there's space to deal with the stuff that they see as more important. It's a POV issue, which I tend to think lies at the root of most of the roadblocks and problems in writing. You have to see things from the characters' viewpoint at all times.

John - WTF


We had a situation this weekend where I kept smelling gas in the kitchen, just a little bit. After overcoming that whole "I'm just imagining it and if I call someone about it I'll be made to feel stupid and all but called/actually called a silly little girl" we called an appliance place and on their advice called the emergency gas company number, and it turned out it was an emergency. There's a leak in in the hose and valve connected to the stove, so that's turned off now and I need to call the appliance place again today to see if I can get the hose etc replaced.

Then we found out the gas company didn't get the hot water heater turned on right when they suddenly decided to install a new meter, so we had to get them to come out and do that, so there was no hot water for a while.

So that was the weekend, small yay.

Fan art

Some lovely fan art of The Element of Fire by punkranger


* The stories I wanted to read by Aliette de Bodard
Aliette writes about reading SF/F as she was growing up: There’s a lot of books in my reading that feature China, or some representation of the Far East–I read them all like I read invented worlds, because the China they depict is so out of touch with my family stories (I won’t say my family stories are all positive! Vietnam has… a complicated relationship with China)–surely they have to be about some kind of fictional China/Far East that doesn’t exist. They speak of martial arts and inscrutable, passive people awaiting to be saved; of some fount of mystical wisdom that awaits the traveller. I think fake!China must be some kind of faraway land invented by writers, because it cannot possibly be the real thing.

* Women in SFF Month Readers Recommendation Giveaway

* Right-Wing Trolls Hijack SciFi Oscars by Arthur Chu
This is about the Hugo awards situation, which I find really depressing. I have a voting membership this year, and I'm going to vote "no award" on every category.

* Talk with me about being a fan of SF and F by Mary Robinette Kowal
This is also about the Hugo awards

Novella rec

Introducing Midnight's Silence and a new series by T. Frohock