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marthawells

Martha Wells

My Flying Lizard Circus


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Element of Fire cover
marthawells

The Death of the Necromancer Audiobook

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The Death of the Necromancer is now available as an audiobook, narrated by Derek Perkins, from Tantor Audio, in MP3 or CDs. It's also available on iTunes (scroll down for audiobooks), Barnes and Noble, Audible, and Amazon, and wherever else they sell audiobooks.

(It's also available as a DRM-free ebook at Barnes and Noble NookBook, Kobo, Amazon US Kindle, Amazon UK Kindle, Barnes and Noble UK, Kindle Canada, Kindle Germany, Kindle France, Kindle Spain, etc.)

The Death of the Necromancer was my third book, and came out from Avon Eos in 1998. It was a Nebula nominee, and was also the book where the crazy copyeditor (the person who is supposed to check grammar, punctuation, and continuity after the editing process is done and right before the book gets formatted for publication) who decided to re-write the book and take out Reynard Morane, because he was gay. Obviously, her re-write was thrown out, because copyeditors are not supposed to re-write other people's manuscripts, plus she was a very bad copyeditor. So the version of the book that came out was the one actually written by me.

It's set in Ile-Rien, the same world as The Element of Fire, but sometime in the future, in Ile-Rien's Victorian/la Belle Epoque time period. The main character, Nicholas Valiarde, is a Moriarty-type figure.

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Wow. I've had copy editors argue plot points with me, and one (otherwise good) actually changed something in Night Calls that I didn't catch until preparing for the ebook--something dangerous, drat her, so all those books are now out there.

But I never had a copy editor try to delete a character. Kudos for getting your version out there!

When people ask me what my favorite book is, The Death Of The Necromancer is still usually the first title that comes to my mind. I first read it as a teenager (which I guess would have been within a few years after it came out); it was the first gaslamp fantasy sort of book I had read, and I think the notion that not all fantasy need be set in a Tolkienesque medieval-style world was something of a revelation to me at the time. Plus it's, y'know, good, which counts for something, too.

It still informs my thinking on necromancy, even having played tons of games where necromancy features prominently, with different rules in each setting. The first example that springs to mind: when I've DMed tabletop games, I've at least once shamelessly stolen the notion of torture as a means of generating magical power, which allows for more interestingly pragmatic villains than simple sadism for sadism's sake (I still think of it as stealing the idea from you, though I've since come across variations in a few other places, though not as many as one might think).

I still can't believe that your copyeditor took it upon herself to write out Reynard (who is an awesome character, by the way), but I'm glad it worked out in your favor.

I'm sincerely hoping not to come across that for myself, but I'll definitely be sure to keep an eye out for things like that, especially for what alfreda mentioned above. My plot tends to depend on certain things to work in a very specific way to allow for me to roll out other concepts in later novels, and when you're trying to plan--at least partially--for two or three books ahead, it's hard enough to keep things from getting too convoluted just in a single part of the story.

One of the best fantasy novels I've read

I'm a fan of all of your work, Martha, but DOTN is far and away my favorite. Everything about it - the setting, the characters, the dialogue, the plot - is just fantastic.

Okay, that's enough sycophantry for today! :)


That is such a great book.

I can't believe that! I had a copy editor who tried to correct my British characters from dialing 999 for emergencies to dialing 911. I just thought that was funny.

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