The Geomancer


5 Questions to a Great Story

As part of Wake County Public Libraries' Write On @ Your Library series, Vampire Empire authors Clay and Susan Griffith discuss five questions to create a great story.


The Making of The Creative Fire

Over at the collective artists blog, Muddy Colors, John Picacio talks about his inspiration for creating the cover for Brenda Cooper's The Creative Fire (Book One of Ruby's Song). He shows some classic paintings that inspired his piece, as well as rare glimpses into his pencils and early process pieces.

From John's piece:
"All of us are living in a fragile time for our fundamental rights, at least here in America. It seems our news and social feeds are filled with daily attacks on womens' rights. Revolutionary posters have always been rallying cries, and Lou and I felt like we might have a chance to evoke those here, as well as serve the novel's intentions. When I thought about who Ruby was, I thought of the 1940's image of Rosie the Riveter, as imagined by J. Howard Miller and Norman Rockwell (with genius inspiration from Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel). I thought of the grace of Sandro Botticelli's The Birth of Venus, along with Russian revolution posters, and Howard Chandler Christy's 'Fight or Buy Bonds' painting."


Pyr Podcast Roundtable

Today, episode 61 of Speculate: The Podcast for Writers, Readers and Fans, features a special roundtable podcast with Pyr editorial director Lou Anders, Pyr authors Brenda Cooper (The Creative Fire) and E.C. Myers (Fair Coin and Quantum Coin), and freelance copyeditor Gabrielle Harbowy. They say:

"We set a new record for single episode participation in this show with four distinguished guests: Brenda Cooper and E.C. Myers (authors of The Creative Fire and Quantum Coin, respectively), freelance editor Gabrielle Harbowy, and Pyr Books‘ editorial and art director Lou Anders speak for an hour on what has made Pyr such a successful speculative fiction imprint, where it’s been and where it’s going in the future. This wide ranging discussion also looks at the finer points of how good editors work with good authors, how important a good cover is to an equally good book, and what makes Dragon Con such a scary (and amazing!) event every year. Our shows normally don’t run this long, but we hope you’ll agree the extra discussion we got with all of these fine people was worth the extra time. If you like what you hear, don’t forget to check back next week when we’ll start a new series of shows on the work of Joe Abercrombie. Until then, thanks as always for listening, and please continue to spread the word about the show!"


Resetting Superheroes in a Steampunk World

Over at the Agony Column, Rick Kleffel reviews Andrew P. Mayer's entire trilogy, The Society of Steam, recently completed with the release of book three, Power Under Pressure. Rick says:

"What Mayer has managed in a quite tightly-written trilogy is to reset the superhero story in a steampunk world. These are both genres that feed on fun, that require adventure and reward the reader with a light-hearted look at the darkest of times. Mayer's prose has the feel of the time it is set in, but not so much as to be annoying... and his plotting and pacing keep things lively but not frantic. ....Mayer hits all the right notes; a touch of horror, some high-adventure, heroes and villains who deserve the elaborate contraptions that carry them across a Rube-Goldberg machine landscape, all at a pace that suggests a handcart on the way to hell."

And Andrew himself was recently a guest of the SF in SF reading series, where he read from the novel. Those who haven't yet experienced his mashup of steampunk and superheros can get a taste here or download the Agony Column Podcast on iTunes.


City of Ruins wins 2012 Endeavor Award

Kristine Kathryn Rusch's City of Ruinshas won the 2012 Endeavor Award. The Endeavour Award is given to a novel or single-author collection written by a Pacific Northwest writer and includes an honorarium of $1000.00 and an engraved glass plaque. The 2012 judges for the award were Gregory Benford, Lawrence M. Schoen, and Susan Shwartz. The winner was announced on November 2, 2012 at OryCon 34 in Portland OR.

The finalists were:
City of Ruins, Kristine Kathryn Rusch (Pyr)
River Marked, Patricia Briggs (Ace)
Anna Dressed in Blood, Kendare Blake (Tor)
When the Saints, Dave Duncan (Tor)
Robopocalypse, Daniel H. Wilson (Doubleday)

You can read Kristine's acceptance speech on her blog.

Congratulations to Kristine and all the nominees!

RT Book Reviews Nominations for Clay and Susan Griffiith

RT Book Reviews have announced their 2012 Reviewers' Choice Awards and Clay Griffith and Susan Griffith's The Kingmakers (Vampire Empire, Book 3) is on the shortlist for Steampunk Novel!