I had to wonder as I walked around the Book Passage 2009 Mystery Conference — who was that guy wearing the shirt featuring the Orbit Theater from a Joe R. Lansdale novel? It was some kind of impressive. I wanted one!
Turned out it was author Tim Maleeny, and once I sussed that, I made sure to interview him. And for that I have to apologize to my podcast listeners, because once you hear him talk, you're going to want to add his books to your ever growing to-be-read stack. There's a reason he was wearing that ultimately cool shirt, which is because he's a Lansdale fan, and you hear him talk about his latest novel, 'Jump', youére going to quickly understand why it jumped into the San Francisco Chronicle's Fiction Bestsellers list the week it arrived. Smart, funny, dark, and even sort of sweet, in a nasty way. You can hear this conversation that will send you to the bookstore yet again by following this link to the MP3 Audio file.
09-10-09: SF in SF Panel Featuring Elizabeth Lynn, Marta Randall and Terry Bisson:
"We all did Chelsea House!"
Funny what comes out when you put three speculative fiction writers behind a table and ask them to talk about writing. Sure, theyére going to talk about genre, and about the history of the genre, especially when, as it happens here, all three are integral parts of that history.
But for all the in-group jokes and asides, all the genre fiction tweedly-bits, all the knowledge and experience in the world of science fiction, it helps to remember that these folks are not just writers, but working writers. They have jobs to do, just like the rest of us, only they involve authoring books. Now for all we love science fiction, fantasy, horror, mystery and literary fiction, sometimes our favorite SF writers write well outside the genre for pay. It's not like they're offering up six-figure salaries for full-time writers of paperback genre fiction. Thus, in our panel on August 22, we had three writers who discovered that they had all worked for the same non-genre fiction publisher, Chelsea House — among many other things they talked about. To hear their discussion, follow the link to the MP3 audio file.
09-09-09: Elizabeth Lynn Interviewed at SF in SF on August 22, 2009
"Usually what happens for me is that a character appears in my psyche." —Elizabeth Lynn
I trust that listeners got an earful of Elizabeth Lynn's dynamic reading of 'Dragon's Treasure' at SF in SF, when I podcast it back on August 26. If so, then you'll definitely want to hear her interview. If not, check the reading out, then return here, and proceed to our interview.
Elizabeth Lynn is every bit as intelligent and fascinating as you might guess from her reading. The author of the classic 'A Different Light' talked to me about her work from the 1970's to the present. We talked about how she creates characters who live in unreal worlds that seem so much like people who live in this world. You can hear our conversation by following this link to the MP3 audio file.
09-08-09: Marta Randall Interviewed at SF in SF on August 22, 2009
"The dynamic tension between the two edges of the field made for a fascinating time to get into the field." —Marta Randall
It was a heady time for science fiction — the New Wave. Everything was changing and everything was being challenged. The rebellion at the heart of rock and roll had made its way into the once cordoned-off world of science fiction. Sex and drugs found their way into the worlds that writers created. Experimentation, already at the core of the genre, took on a distinctly literary form. Science fiction entered New Dimensions.
Marta Randall was at the helm of New Dimensions, along with Robert Silverberg. She co-edited three of the most influential anthologies of the time, and indeed, perhaps of all science fiction. I spoke with Randall at SF in SF on August 22, 2009, and heard her story of going through the slushpile at New Dimensions, which might have something well ... not so good, and might yield up a story by Michael Swanwick or Howard Waldrop. Here's a link to our conversation.
09-07-09: A 2009 Interview with Fran Gage
"All olive oil should have three things; it should be fruity...and it should have some bitterness and some pungency." — Fran Gage
Gage has owned restaurants and even a bakery. She knows her olive oil the ay you want an expert to know it; from the historical, scientific, and production aspects to the practical world of using the oil in recipes. Rest assured, in this conversation, you will walk away with enough information to intelligently choose a good brand of olive oil. Gage also gives you enough details on the theory, so that you'll understand why a good olive oil is in fact good. And you'll hear enough about the book and the recipes in the book to make your mouth water for both.
05-04-13: Commentary : Reasons Not to Leave the House, Reality Check : The Truth Hurts Edition: 'Down the Up Escalator' by Barbara Garson, 'The Wolf and the Watchman' by Scott C. Johnson,'The Book of Woe' by Gary Greenberg, 'Confessions of a Sociopath' by M. E. Thomas