Thursday, November 12, 2015

Coming soon to San Francisco!

Hey, y'all!

I'll be in San Francisco this weekend, and it's going to be an action-packed weekend! Here's what's on the roster:

First, I'm stopping by Borderlands Books at noon on Saturday, November 14. I'll sign some stock (probably mine) and meet the fine folks of this illustrious establishment. It's all pretty informal, so consider yourself in-the-know.

Next, I'm thrilled to join Writers with Drinks, Charlie Jane Anders' legendary literary variety show! I'll read a bit from my own work and bask in the glory of Sarah Jeong, K. Tempest Bradford, Jessica Erica Hahn, S. Kay, and Michael Collins. This all happens in The Make Out Room at 7:30pm on Saturday, November 14.

Finally, I'll be at the San Jose Barnes & Noble at 3:00pm on Sunday, November 15 to sign copies of The Buried Life and Cities and Thrones!

If the fates (or furies) take you to any of these fine establishments this weekend, come on over and say hello!

Monday, October 26, 2015

Announcements: Nook special, Writers with Drinks, and Pillars stories, oh my!

I thought October was a crazy month, and then I looked into the future and into November.

But first, Nook special! For the rest of the week (through Halloween), THE BURIED LIFE is on special for $2.99 on Nook! If you haven't picked it up, now's a great time to do so, and if you have, write your review to let other readers know what you thought. If you don't have a Nook, you can also get the Kindle deal on Amazon.

Next up, I'm thrilled to announce that I'll be joining Sarah Jeong, Jessica Erin Hahn, S. Kay, and Michael Collins at Writers With Drinks in San Francisco! It all goes down on November 14 at 7:30 in The Make Out Room, so be there!

ALSO, while I'm in town, I'm looking forward to stopping by Borderlands Books around noon on the 14th to sign stock and visit. Come over and say hello!

Over the next few weeks, you can look forward to seeing some PILLARS OF ETERNITY short stories by Eric Fenstermaker, Paul Kirsch, and yours truly. "The Ratcatcher," starring Sagani (and Itumaak, natch) is already out!

And finally, I'll be at the World Fantasy Convention in Saratoga Springs the first weekend in November, where I'm looking forward to catching up with old friends and meeting new friends. It was one of the most social and fun conventions I went to last year, and I'm really looking forward to repeating the experience. Hope to see you there!

Monday, October 5, 2015

A brief list of books I've loved lately

Sharing is caring. Maybe not when it comes to salmonella, but definitely when it comes to excellent books.

With that in mind, here's a short list of books (in no particular order) that I've read and enjoyed lately:
If you've read something and loved it, tell others about it. Write a review of it. Not only does that help others discover something wonderful, but it also goes a long, long way toward ensuring that the authors you love can keep producing.

What have you been reading?

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Review: Cat's Whirld by Rodolfo Martínez

Cat's Whirld is the new translation of La sonrisa del gato, a 1995 Spanish cyberpunk novel written by Rodolfo Martínez and translated into English by Steve Redwood. It’s an ambitious, fast-paced story about self-aware AIs, warring empires, and the ragtag band of hackers and cyberthieves caught between them, and it’s definitely worth a read for fans of cyberpunk and space opera.

The book is set in a spinning space station called the Whirld, a kind of wild west positioned between two highly regulated empires, Confederacy and Mandate. It’s a hotbed for the kinds of technological advances that both empires require (yet are too cautious and rule-bound to develop themselves). As such, the labs of the Whirld are filled with projects that are as dangerous as they are visionary, and the station’s busy corridors and seedy lounges are filled with operatives trying to buy, sell, or steal them.

Cat’s Whirld tells a big story on a refreshingly small scale. Even though the grand designs of rogue AIs and powerful empires are responsible for many of the inciting events of the book, the action follows a close-knit group of data thieves who call the space station home. This tight focus adds a layer of warmth and humanity to the circuits and corridors that dominate cyberpunk, though it does feel as if more concepts and conflicts are introduced than thoroughly explored.

But these characters are the true focus of the story, and it’s their relationships—rather than their ideologies—that drive them.

The frame story is an interrogation, which nicely teases the intrigues and developments of the central plot. Good frame stories are an art, and I found myself surprised by the full revelation of circumstances at the end. The interrogation narrative also nicely focused the events of the central plot, even if it leads to a bit of overly expository dialogue.

Cat’s Whirld clips along at a nice, quick pace, and it’s over almost before you know it. The chases through the hazardous space station, the games of cat and mouse between the thieves and the authorities, and the high-stakes gambling between resourceful humans and hyperintelligent AIs keep the story speeding forward. 

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

It was the best of times...

Who am I kidding, it was still a really good time.

For those of you who don't know, this year's Worldcon (or World Science Fiction Convention if you like to sip your tea with your pinky up) was beset with its share of catastrophes and controversies. It was almost overshadowed by the Sad Puppy/Rabid Puppy debacle, and it was literally overshadowed by smoke from the Washington wildfires. Many visiting authors and creators found themselves unable to get on programming, and those that did found aspects of said programming woefully problematic.

But many of us attended nevertheless, and we got the very thing that draws us to conventions in the first place: the company of fellow fans and creators.

As someone who's only been attending conventions for three years now, I can easily say that this was one of the most fun for me. In my experience, each con is better than the last because I have the pleasure of visiting with more and more old friends and making even more new ones. I don't go for the programming or even the travel--I go for the community, and this year was a great example of community coming together.

It's also a call to action for me to be more proactive about supporting the work that makes the SFF genre great. This year was a testament to the fact that every vote and and every voice matters, and if we want the conversations around our genre to be constructive, we all need to pitch in.

Most importantly, it's a reminder that the community is filled with thoughtful and delightful people, many of whom I got to see this weekend. So, to Tex Thompson, Eric Fischl, Jennie Goloboy, Annalee Flower Horne, Sunil Patel, Megan O'Keefe, Joey Hewitt, Lee Harris, Mike Underwood, Beth Cato, Andrea Stewart, Jeremiah Honer, Randy Henderson, Folly Blaine, Wesley Chu (and Paula!), Fran Wilde, Scott Andrews, Dan Wells, Cat Rambo, Jason Hough, Patrick Tomlinson, James Sutter, Kate Elliot, Jay Swanson, Luke Mathews, Melissa Olson, Tim Ward, Tina Gower, Matt Rotundo, Courtney Schafer, Kate Dollarhyde, Ramez Naam (and Molly!), Darusha Wehm, Rachael Acks, Arley Sorg (and Danny!), Marina Lostetter, RM Ambrose, Dominick D'Aunno, Tim Sussman, Amy Sisson, Paul Abell, Martha Wells, Lawrence Schoen (and Val!), Alyc Helms, Adam Rakunas, Andrew Barton, Josh Vogt, Cassie Clarke, D.L. Young, S.B. Divya, Austin DeMarco, Terra LeMay, Effie Seiberg, Coral Moore, Amanda Forrest, and so many others that I'm forgetting right now--cheers to you all!

Friday, August 21, 2015


I'm noticing a Kimmy Schmidt-esque tendency to title all of my blog posts with exclamation points, but hey, I'm excited! Let's go with it.

I'm especially excited to be at Sasquan this weekend, where I'm making new friends and reconnecting with old friends. Controversies aside, it's still a great place to visit with a lot of wonderful people.

If you want to catch up, here's where you can find me this weekend:

 - Kaffeeklatsch, 5-6 pm
 - r/Fantasy's Drinks with Authors, 7-11 pm @ Black Label Brewing

 - pop-up r/Fantasy AMA, 11:30-12:00 pm, here
 - signing, 2-5 pm, @ the Angry Robot booth

 - reading with Annalee Flower Horne, 1:30-2:00 pm, @ Room 301

 - autographing, 11-12 pm, @ convention signing table

Thursday, August 6, 2015

THE BURIED LIFE is today's Kindle Daily Deal!

If you've been waiting for the right time to pick up THE BURIED LIFE, wait no longer. It's available for $1.99 on Kindle today!

And if you've already finished THE BURIED LIFE, there's this other book, oh what's it called...