Alex Bledsoe and I talk about our novelette, Hisses and Wings, at SF Signal (#SFWApro)

This is just going to be a real short redirect post to let you know that Alex Bledsoe and I have an online conversation about our novelette, Hisses and Wings, over at SF Signal today. So if you're curious about how we came up with the story and characters, here's your chance to find out a little bit more. In other news ...

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The Character of Environment in Gothic Fiction

A few years back, just prior to a World Fantasy Con, a question was posited as to whether urban fantasy had become the new gothic horror due to the cityscapes taking the place of haunted houses and castles. It was an interesting idea, but one that I ultimately rejected. Urban fantasy has a texture that isn’t quite as dark as gothic horror; although, I will concede there are many elements that overlap (sorry, no Venn diagram is forthcoming from me).

However, the idea of a physical place, such as a house, a rural landscape, or a city, attaining the same characteristics as a person seems to be common to both urban fantasy and gothic horror. I recently read an NPR review for Lauren Beukes new novel, Broken Monsters, where Michael Schaub noted that Beukes renders Detroit as “… a major, tragic character in the novel.” Sarah Waters gives us a house in The Little Stranger that becomes haunted with a man’s desires.

Read the full post at Fantasy Book Critic

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Women Made of Chrome (a guest post)

I wish there were more Jane Navios in fantasy. Oh, you see them in science fiction and horror, but not in fantasy. There is an unwritten code that women in fantasy novels must not be older than thirty, or they’re all the grandmotherly types over sixty, but rarely are there any in the forty to fifty range. There are a few exceptions to this rule, but since the 1990s, female characters over forty seem to have faded into the background scenery, and very few are protagonists.

You can read the rest of this post over at the Hugo Award winning blog, A Dribble of Ink.

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writing contests and author photographs

Two cool things are going on around the interwebs this week:

A Writing Contest: Bloody Cake News is hosting a writing contest to help Mark Lawrence spread the good word about his newest novel, Prince of Fools.

Six authors will be judging the entries: Mark Lawrence, T.O. Munro, Snorri Kristjansson, Daniel Polansky, Luke Scull, and me. Entries have already begun to pour in, so go over to Bloody Cake News and see what the competition looks like. You have got until April 1, 2014 to give us your best three hundred words ... make them count.

[Edited to add: my flash fiction, Comes the Night, was only 231 words. You can do it!]

Authors on Author Photos: M.L. Brennan asked a bunch of us what we really thought about author photos. I'm over at her place this week along with authors Jason Hough, Delilah Dawson, Django Wexler, Elspeth Cooper, Stephen Blackmore, Mazarkis Williams, and Zachary Jernigan. We discuss the dreaded author photograph and what these pictures mean to us.

In other things, I'm busy with my latest work and will be around sporadically.

Stay out of trouble.

Yeah, I'm talking to you.

Unicorns, Highlanders, & the characters we kill! (#SFWApro)

I know that a lot of you enjoy going to cons, and I also know a lot you cannot attend cons due to financial reasons or because there simply aren't that many cons in your area. ML Brennan had a cool idea ... why not bring the con to the fans by creating an online author panel?

Please join me, Leigh BardugoML Brennan, and Django Wexler, for an informal author chat. The best part? You can read it at your leisure.

So here we are in Round 1 talking about Unicorns, Highlanders, and the characters that we kill!

Wait, you say [because I just know you say things in your head while reading these posts--don't you?]. I love interacting with the authors!

Got a question or a comment? Leave it in the comments for us and we'll answer you. So what are you waiting for? We're hanging out at ML Brennan's place. Go check us out.

Discovering the Inclusive Badass in Urban Fantasy

This week I am hanging out at Bastard Books with a guest post on the inclusiveness of badassery in urban fantasy. I talk about my misconceptions about the genre and how "Naked the Night Sings" found its way into the anthology, Manifesto: UF. The post is all about rethinking our misconceptions about urban fantasy.

You need to head over there, because the Bastard is also giving away not one, not two, not three, but five--that's right, I said FIVE--e-copies of Manifesto: UF, which features my short story "Naked the Night Sings" along with a host of other fine stories by authors you know.

Now get out of here and check out the Bastard's blog to see how to win.

Go on, you want it, you know you do ...

riding the razor's edge--urban fantasy and horror

What is the razor's edge that divides urban fantasy from horror? 

I give a few thoughts on the subject of riding that razor’s edge between horror and urban fantasy and talk about my short story "Naked the Night Sings," which appears in the Manifesto: UF anthology. I have a guest post this week with urban fantasy author Suzanne Johnson. If you don't know Suzanne, she is the urban fantasy author of the Sentinels of New Orleans urban fantasy series. You can read all about Suzanne's books here.

Suzanne is giving away a copy of Miserere too and all you have to do to enter is leave a comment. Come on over and join the discussion!

a guest post over at a bitter draft

This week, I'm hanging out over at Patrick Doherty's blog, A Bitter Draft, with a guest post that contains some of my random thoughts on religion in fantasy. I talk about religion, fanatics, and societies, oh ... my! Check it out.

I'll be back next week to tell you about the movie Solomon Kane and why I enjoyed it, but for now ... go say hi to Patrick and tell him that I sent you.

Q&A on Gender at Fantastical Imaginations

Dominick's Question and Answer series on gender continues at Fantastical Imaginations (apologies to Dominick for not getting a redirect up yesterday--I was a bit under the weather). This is a three-part interview series where I join authors Francis Knight, Elspeth Cooper, Anne Lyle, and Courtney Schafer to talk about gender in SFF.

You will find all the links at Fantastical Imaginations as well, but just in case you've already read one part and not the other, I'm including links to all three: Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.

gender today, StellarCon this weekend

This morning, I join authors Francis Knight, Elspeth Cooper, Anne Lyle, and Courtney Schafer at Fantastical Imaginations talking about gender. Also, as much as I love that picture of the mighty warrior woman and the eviscerated male at her feet, I must warn you that no one is getting killed. Of course, there haven't been any comments at the time of this post, so that situation could change rapidly.

Moving on ...

I'll be at one of my favorite cons this weekend: StellarCon 37! I'll post my schedule as soon as I have it available. I'm greatly looking forward to meeting new friends and catching up with old friends this weekend. So if you're in the Greensboro, High Point, Winston-Salem area, I'd love to see you.