Monday, September 23, 2013

Author Interview: Wendy Wagner

You’ll not find a nicer person in the SFF community than Wendy Wagner. By some odd coincidence, she and I actually went to college together at Pacific University many moons ago. Since then, thanks to the glory of the Interwebs, we’ve been able to strike up an online friendship based on our shared love of everything spec-fic related. Wendy isn’t just a nice gal, though. She’s got the writing and editing skills to cement herself firmly in the SFF community. She’s worked as an assistant editor for Fantasy Magazine, she’s had her short fiction appear in top publications like The Way of the Wizard, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Three-Lobed Burning Eye, and Armored, and she has a new tie-in novel coming out as part of the Pathfinder RPG. I had the pleasure of interviewing Wendy for my recent article on the writing life at Blackgate, and I’m happy to present the entire interview transcript here.

Welcome, Wendy. Can you please describe your writing career up to this point, and what's the story with your Pathfinder Tales novel? When and where is it coming out?

I started out writing novels about eight or nine years ago. I struggled through drafting and endless revisions of two books (one of which sold, but the publisher went out of business before release), and realized that I wanted to practice on something a little shorter. So for a long time, I focused on short stories, even doing some work for an online magazine to learn more about the craft. Now I'm writing novels again, including a
tie-in for the Pathfinder RPG. That book, Skinwalkers, is due out sometime next year, and you'll see it on shelves in bookstores and game shops all over.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Happy Talk Like a Pirate Day!

A pirate walks into a bar and the bartender notices he has a big steering wheel attached to his crotch. The bartender dutifully pours a stiff rum drink for the pirate, cut can't help himself—he has to find out about the steering wheel.

"So, hey there, mister pirate captain, I couldn't help but notice you had a steering wheel down there. What's the deal with that?"

The pirate took a nip off his rum, turned to the bartender to regard him with his unpatched eye, and replied, "Arrr, it drives me nuts!"

Ba-dum-dum-cha! Thank you, thank you very much.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Author Interview: M Todd Gallowglas

I met M. Todd Gallowglas last year at Conjecture Con in San Diego, California. Being a bit of a newbie on the small SFF convention scene, it was great to meet Gallowglas, a guy who was cheerful and welcoming, making me feel right at home. Gallowglas is a frequent attendee and panelist at SFF conventions, and a born storyteller. In fact, he has been a professional storyteller at Renaissance Faires and Medieval Festivals for over twenty years, and he began self-releasing two series of fantasy novels several years ago, to much success. I interviewed Gallowglas for my recent article at Blackgate, and am now excited to release my full interview with him here.

Welcome! Can you describe your writing career up to this point in a nutshell, and don't leave out the part about being a Ren-Faire storyteller!

It’s funny that everyone asks about the storyteller bit, like it’s some secret. My professional writing career came out of my storytelling show, “Bard’s Cloak of Tales.” Let’s see…in a nutshell…A few years ago, I had this storytelling show to help make ends meet while I was seeking a position as an English teacher after having gone back to school to earn my BA in English (with a focus on Creative Writing, of course). My wife and a few friends sent me a couple of articles about this Amanda Hawking chick and John Locke dude, saying they were making a killing selling their self-published books straight to Kindle. I said, “Huh…interesting.” A few months later, I put some stuff up to see if I could make a little extra money by sending people from my show to my ebooks. At the same time I jumped into the self-publishing world, I wrote some Cthulu short stories for Fantasy Flight Games and

Sunday, September 15, 2013

The Knight's Dog

I'm very happy to announce the release of The Knight's Dog, an epic fantasy novelette, as an e-book single for both the Kindle and the Nook, for only 99 cents.

Official Blurbage: When Dern encounters a dying knight, he forsakes his life as a thief to do the honorable thing and deliver the knight's weapons and orphaned dog to the king. Civilized life is nothing like he imagined it, though. At every turn, someone is trying to swindle him or cut his throat. Everyone but the surly dog that now looks to him as his master....

This story was originally published in Tales of the Sword by Red Skies Press. Inasmuch as I'm objectively able to evaluate my own writing, I would have to say this is one of the short pieces I'm most proud of having written. I was very much influenced by George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series when I wrote it, and I think that comes across most clearly in the moral ambiguity of the characters.

-Garrett Calcaterra

Monday, September 9, 2013

Interview: Fantasy Author David B. Coe Talks the Writing Life

David B. Coe is a fantasy author I’ve been following for several years now over at the very cool website His novels have never been on the New York Times Bestseller list. No one’s ever written him a million dollar check to turn one of his books into a Hollywood blockbuster. And yet he’s been steadily publishing fantasy novels with Tor Books for sixteen years, including a new series of historical urban fantasy novels under the pseudonym D.B. Jackson. His forthright articles at Magical Words illustrate what a consummate pro he is—always striving to improve his craft, and writing for the love of storytelling, not fame and fortune. Not that he or I or dozens of other fantasy authors wouldn’t relish fame and fortune, but that’s the point: most published authors don’t get stinking rich from their books.

Coe’s writing advice at Magical Words, along with conversations I’ve had with steampunk pioneers James P. Blaylock and Tim Powers (similarly, successful pros who aren’t rich!), and my own personal experiences struggling to make a living as a writer, all served as inspiration for the new article I wrote over at Blackgate magazine. Coe was kind enough to agree to being interviewed for the article, and since I was only able to use a small portion of my conversation with him, I’m happy to present the entire transcript here at my personal blog.

David, welcome, and thanks for your time. You received a Ph.D. from Stanford in 1993 and your first novel, Children of Amarid, came out in 1997. Can you describe your journey going from graduate student to published author to full-time author?

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Free Amazon Download - A Good Brew is Hard to Find

If you have a Kindle or Kindle-reading app, hop on over to Amazon for a free download of A Good Brew is Hard to Find, the humorous, interactive SF/F/H book Ahimsa Kerp and I wrote. The book is on a free promotion today, Aug. 5, 2013, and tomorrow, Friday, Aug. 5.

-G. Calcaterra