Falling Sky

6/30/10

Diving in the Wreck wins 2010 Outstanding Achievement

The Wisconsin Library Association has chosen the 2010 Outstanding Achievement Awards for 2009 publications. Their list, which features ten titles by Wisconsin author, includes Diving into the Wreck by Kristine Kathryn Rusch. We are, naturally, very proud of her and the book!

The full list of titles are:

Lauren Groff (formerly of Madison) - Delicate Edible Birds and Other Stories
Jim Knipfel (formerly of Green Bay) - Unplugging Philco
Greg Kot (formerly of Milwaukee) - Ripped: How the Wired Generation Revolutionized Music
Valerie Laken (Milwaukee) - Dream House: a Novel
Daniyal Mueenuddin (formerly of Elroy) - In Other Rooms, Other Wonders
Michael Perry (Fall Creek) - Coop: A Year of Poultry, Pigs and Parenting
Jay Reed (Milwaukee) - Thor and More
Kristine Rusch (formerly of Superior) - Diving into the Wreck
Kathleen Kline Schmitt (Madison), Ronald Bruch (Oshkosh), and Frederick Binkowski (Milwaukee) - People of the Sturgeon: Wisconsin's Love Affair with an Ancient Fish
Patrick Somerville (formerly of Green Bay) - The Cradle: a Novel

The Dervish House: As Close to Perfection as a Book Can Get

Reviews for Ian McDonald's The Dervish House are starting to come in, and they are all saying the same thing. Which is--you need to read this book! Here are some of the first few reviews:

"McDonald takes the history of Istanbul, both real and imagined, and forges a multi-faceted and fascinating character out of the city itself; then he adds in the experiences of six people whose lives are about to intersect in the most unexpected ways. ...McDonald creates a magnificent knot of intrigue, thrills, and daring adventures, with the flair for character and setting that make his tales so satisfying to indulge in." Booklist

"The Dervish House is without a doubt his best and most accessible science fiction novel to date. And to put it simply, it just blew my mind. Believe me, I did try to find some shortcomings and facets that left a little to be desired. All to no avail, of course. The Dervish House is about as good as it gets, folks. McDonald's past novels had already set the bar rather high, no question. But this one, at least for me, is as close to perfection as a book can get." Pat's Fantasy Hotlist


"McDonald has a knack for painting a near future world that is both convincing and compelling, a rarity worthy of Frank Herbert or J.R. Tolkien. You are totally drawn in as this Istanbul of the year 2027 unfolds in a saga worthy of the Blade Runner tradition of anti-utopia fame. But as it always is the case in Turkey, the ultra-modern must give way to the ancient undercurrent of superstition and tradition. ...Mr. McDonald’s futuristic Istanbul reminds us of the complex underplay of European meets Middle Eastern politics, and why the term Byzantine entered our lexicon in the first place. You can almost feel the oppressive heat and smell the spice bazaars down those ancient narrow cobble stone streets… just watch out for that patrol drone whizzing by! ...MacDonald is an expert wordsmith and raises the bar in the Sci-Fi genre to a whole new plateau." Astoguyz

6/29/10

Pyr Comes to the Nook (and B&N eReader)

The first Pyr ebooks are starting to show up at B&N.com for reading on the Nook and their B&N eReader software. In all, there are some 800 Pyr & Prometheus titles that will be up shortly (about 60 of them Pyr - the parent company has been around a lot longer). But for now, you can get Ian McDonald's Cyberabad Days, Mike Resnick's Stalking the Dragon, and Mark Chadbourn's Always Forever (yes, I know that's book three. Books one and two up soon).

6/21/10

Pierre Pevel wins 2010 David Gemmel Morningstar Award!

Via SF Signal: The winners of the David Gemmell Legend Award 2010 were announced on Friday 18th June at the Magic Circle Headquarters in London. We're delighted to learn that Pierre Pevel's The Cardinal's Blades won the Morningstar Award for Best Newcomer. Pyr will be publishing the book in the US in October.

Congrats also to Joe Abercrombie, whose Best Served Cold won the Ravensheart Award for Best Cover Art (design by Didier Graffet, Dave Senior and Laura Brett). And to Graham McNeill, whose Empire won the Legend Award for Best Novel.

6/18/10

BSC Interview with Yours Truly

I'm interviewed today by Elena Nola over at BSC. Here's the opening to whet your appetite:

This one’s for those of you who like to know what goes on before the book falls off the bookstore shelf into your hands.  Lou Anders is the editorial director of Pyr books, as well as being the man behind many anthologies on a wide variety of topics.  Over the past week or so I’ve had the pleasure of picking his brain about how he chooses manuscripts, how he builds anthologies, what he sees as the current state of science fiction and fantasy, and more.  If you’re a young editor, or someone trying to break into the field as a writer, or just someone who’s curious about the publishing industry from an insider’s perspective, be sure to read this interview!  

First, for those readers out there who may not know, can you tell me what the Pyr imprint is all about?

Pyr was launched in March 2005 as the science fiction and fantasy imprint of Prometheus Books, a midsize independent publisher of intelligent nonfiction. From the beginning we tried to make a line that would appeal to discerning readers of genre fiction. We decided not to specialize in a subgenre (Military SF, Epic Fantasy), but to celebrate SF&F in all its forms. Still, we set out to try to make the through-line of the brand Quality. We heard early on from readers, distributors, independent bookstores, and big chain stores that we succeeded. This March marked our five year anniversary, and we will hit our hundredth title in September. In that time, we’ve been on the Hugo ballot eight times, and have placed on the Philip K Dick, Nebula, Theodore Sturgeon, Campbell (both of them), Chesley, BSFA, and Locus Magazine Awards, among many others. We are honored to have worked with such great authors as Joe Abercrombie, James Barclay, Mark Chadbourn, David Louis Edelman, James Enge, Kay Kenyon, Tom Lloyd, John Meaney, Ian McDonald, Michael Moorcock, Mike Resnick, Justina Robson, Chris Roberson, Kristine Kathryn Rusch, Joel Shepherd, Robert Silverberg, Adrian Tchaikovsky, Sean Williams, and many more. It’s a further honor to have worked with artists like Todd Lockwood, Stephan Martiniere, John Picacio, Dave Seeley, Jon Sullivan, Raymond Swanland, and others.

You were with Pyr from the very beginning—you were the guy Prometheus Books tapped to get it off the ground.  What was your personal background coming into that project?

I came into print publishing backwards...

Read More.

6/14/10

Cyberabad Days and the Sense of Wonder

Over at Reading the Leaves, there is a marvelous review of Ian McDonald's Cyberabad Days. Terry Weyna writes, "The prose sparkles, the plots of the stories are uniformly tight, but it is the imagination, the picture of the future, that really works here. If you want that 'sense of wonder' that science fiction is most famous for, this is the place to find it."

But in the comments section, a discussion has started as to whether or not Cyberabad Days might be good introductory fiction for someone unfamiliar with SF. Terry responds, "There's been a lot of discussion recently about how to introduce people to science fiction. Most often SF readers tend to suggest much older books and stories to potential new readers -- the things they read as kids, which tend to be very pulpy. The problem with a lot of more contemporary SF, though, is that it often seems to require some knowledge of the genre in order to understand any additions thereto. So, for instance, most SF about robots will assume that the reader knows Asimov's Three Laws of Robotics. It will also assume that you know what an ansible is, and so on. McDonald might well be an exception. I wouldn't call Cyberabad Days easy reading, but it doesn't require knowing the canon of SF inside and out, either."

What do you think?

6/11/10

Short Film: Oedipe

Via SF Signal: a short film by Thierry Bleton, Frederic Caro, Renaud Madeline and Jonathan Perez.

Charlaine Harris on Shadow's Son

Charlaine Harris, of Sookie Stackhouse/True Blood fame, has very kindly given a plug for Jon Sprunk's debut fantasy, Shadow's Son, on her blog.

"The cover looked sort of young adult-ish, but there’s nothing on the cover to classify it, so I wasn’t sure what I was getting into. As it turns out, Sprunk’s book could be read by young adults but is also quite entertaining for older adults. Assassin Caim, in the city of Othir, finds that he himself is the subject of an insidious plot. The killer becomes the prey, as Caim is framed for a murder he didn’t commit. Caim forms an alliance with the daughter of the murdered man, but her own past is as much of a lie as Caim’s. This is a short but fast-moving novel with heartbreak and redemption both."

6/9/10

New on Kindle: Two Shadows and the Devil

We're up to 57 books available on the Kindle now. Jon Sprunk's Shadow's Son, Mark Chadbourn's The Devil in Green, and Matthew Sturges' The Office of Shadow are among the latest releases.

And before you ask, more formats coming "soon."

6/8/10

Seven Countries and Counting

John Sprunk's Shadow's Son, first book in the Shadow Saga, has just been released in the US. But the entire trilogy has now sold in six additional countries. Here they are:

France (Bragelonne)
U.K. (
Gollancz)
Germany (
Heyne)
Czech Republic (Fantom Print)
Spain (Alianza)
Poland (Papierowy Ksiezyc)


And if this isn't enough to get you excited, today you can read a guest blog with Jon over at Pat's Fantasy Hotlist.

Three Chesley Award Nominations for Pyr

ASFA, the Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Artists, have announced the 2010 Chesley Award nominees for works eligible from 2009, and I am very honored to report that Pyr has made the ballot three times.


For Best Cover Illustration: Paperback:

David Palumbo for Stalking the Dragon by Mike Resnick (Pyr, August 2009)
John Picacio for World's End by Mark Chadbourn (Pyr, May 2009)

For Best Art Director:

Lou Anders (which is me). We are all very honored by these three nominations.

2010 is the 25th anniversary of the Chesley Awards. The awards will be presented at NASFiC: The 10th Occasional North American Science Fiction Convention, August 5th-8th, 2010, in Raleigh, NC.

Congratulations to all the nominees!

6/6/10

Ian McDonald on the Small World Podcast

Ian McDonald is a guest on the latest episode of the Small World podcast. Ian talks with host Bazooka Joe about his forthcoming masterwork, The Dervish House. This naturally leads to the incredibly/suddenly timely topic of Turkey's place in the global stage,  as well as discussions of Islam (particularly sufism), nanotechnology, and all the other other themes that factor into Ian's book. Cory Doctorow opens the podcast as well, discussing his latest novel, For the Win. Both interviews are well worth checking out (as is this podcast generally). You can download it at the length above or via iTunes.

6/2/10

Twice the Kudos for Shadow's Son

A joint review of Jon Sprunk's Shadow's Son on Fantasy Book Critic heaps double the praise on this debut fantasy.

Cindy says: “Shadow's Son is attention grabbing,  fast paced, and an overall stand out fantasy novel…Shadow's Son takes fantasy to it's original roots with a great storyline, quick paced plot flow, some  really great fight scenes and enjoyable characters…Jon Sprunk shows that not  all fantasy novels need to be doorstoppers to be good. Shadow's Son is easily one of my favorite books of 2010 and I  look forward to seeing what Sprunk can add to this trilogy.”

Liviu says: “The first lines of the novel should give you a clear taste of its style  since for me they were the kind that get and keep me reading without being able to put the book down unless I really must. And Shadow's Son continues in this  addictive way till the end without letting the pace slack even for a  moment… An A+ for the style and the series became another get/read asap, confirming for once the "good vibes" I had from the  original announcement.”

But if you want to see for yourself, our friends at Tor.com are kindly hosting an excerpt from the first chapter.

6/1/10

Three New Lou Interviews for You (Say That FIve Times Fast)


What are the chances of three interviews going live on the same day?


This morning, I'm the guest on the wonderful Dragon Page Cover to Cover podcast, episode #410a. They say,  "Lou talks about how the iPad has shifted his reading preferences recently, and despite his deep and continuing love for physical books themselves, he can see where his future book buying may go the way his music buying went after iTunes became more widely used.Technology is changing the publishing game, and the guys talk about easy it’s becoming to be lured away from the book to the many electronic readers out there; about whether to use enhanced content for ebooks to encourage sales, the importance of having a quality story, and much more. Lou also walks through what happens on the path from manuscript to shelf: from the acquisition process, the editing process, the cover art process, and the book design process." This is my second appearance on the Dragon Page. I'm a big fan of the show and always have fun talking with Mike & Mike. You can listen with the direct link on the page itself, download, or get via iTunes.

Meanwhile, a brand-new, online magazine launches today, Redstone Science Fiction, from editor Michael Ray. Redstone is an online magazine that publishes "primarily science fiction short stories" and pays SFWA pro rates. Their first issue features "Raising Tom Chambers" by Daniel Powell and flash fiction story "Freefall" by Peter Roberts. There are also three interviews, one with  cover artist Kittyhawk, a popular webcomic artist, one with Joel Hardy, an engineer who works with scientific research on the International Space Station, and one with Yours Truly (conducted by author David Alastair Hayden). Check it out and give them your love.


Finally, I'm interviewed on The Mad Hatter's Bookshelf and Book Review as well. We talk about steampunk, anthologies, the submission process, my own writing, and, yes, hats.