R.B. Lemberg: A Different Adventure

R.B. LEMBERG was born September 27, 1976 in Ukraine, and grew up there, in Russia, and in Israel. They attended graduate school at the University of Cali­fornia, Berkeley, where they studied Slavic linguistics, earning a PhD. They work as a sociolinguistics professor at a Midwestern university.

Lemberg began publishing poetry and fiction of genre interest in 2008, initially under the byline Rose Lemberg. Some of their poetry is collected in ...Read More

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Estcon 2021 Report

THIS ESTONIAN SUMMER would have been right at home at the Locus office in California: Sunny days under brilliant blue skies with just a slight breeze to keep the heat from becom­ing stifling. Perfect for the annual outdoor science fiction convention held at Udu Farm in central Estonia. The event wasn’t confirmed until just a few weeks before, but the vaccination program had reached full throttle and infection rates remained ...Read More

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Tade Thompson: Unified Field Theory

TADE THOMPSON was born in South London in the 1970s. He traveled a lot as a child due to his parents’ separation and his father’s work as a lawyer (some of which was behind the Iron Curtain). Thomp­son’s qualifications include medicine, psychiatry, and social anthropology, though he flirted with Industrial Chemistry in 1988. He has been a member of the Royal College of Psychiatrists since 2007.

He sold his first ...Read More

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Spotlight on: Sana Takeda

What was your introduction to the comics field? Who were your influences? Was there a particular artist or artists who drew you in?

You know a lot of talented artists in the field of comics. At first, I felt, ‘‘There is no room for me in this business.’’ I have not got any formal education in art and didn’t have special drawing skill. It was clear that, even if I ...Read More

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Spotlight on Ryka Aoki

Tell us about your new book Light From Uncommon Stars (Tor Books). What’s the story about, and what inspired you to create that future?

Light From Uncommon Stars is about violins and deals with the Devil. It’s about recovering from transphobia and racism and trauma. It’s about space aliens fleeing a galactic war. It talks about the ultimate end of the universe and what is after that end. It talks ...Read More

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Photo Story: Odyssey 2021

The 2021 Odyssey Writing Workshop was held June 7 – July 16, 2021. ‘‘Similar to last year, Odyssey held its writing workshop online due to the ongoing pandemic. It is still the same intense and immersive experience as always!’’ The 12 students came from the US, Denmark, New Zealand, and India; six of the students received scholarships.

This review and more like it in the August 2021 issue of Locus. ...Read More

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Zen Cho: Gods, Ghosts, Gangsters & Grandmas

ZEN CHO was born in Selangor Malaysia in 1986 and grew up in Malaysia, apart from a year and a half spent in the US around age six. She moved to the UK at 18 for university, where she met her husband. She earned a law degree at Cambridge, and now works as a lawyer. She lives in the UK with her family.

Cho began publishing genre fiction in 2010, ...Read More

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Photo Story: Charm City Spec Returns

Baltimore reading series Charm City Spec held its first in-person event of the year on July 14 on the patio of The Ivy Bookshop, with readings by Sarah Pinsker, Michael R. Underwood, Kate Reed Petty, K.M. Szpara, and Karen Osborne. The quarterly event is sponsored by the Baltimore Science Fiction Society with support from The Ivy Bookshop and ‘‘a generous grant from SFWA.’’ Information about upcoming events can be found ...Read More

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Jennifer Marie Brissett Guest Post–“Time As A Technology”

My novels have been characterized as being “Afrofuturistic,” but to be honest I never thought of the subgenre while writing them. When I write I generally don’t think of any subgenre before I sit down to create the work. My thinking when writing is usually concentrated more on story and narrative construction, not on the genre. Mostly all that is happening is that I have a story to tell, I ...Read More

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Lavie Tidhar: Between the Cracks

LAVIE TIDHAR was born November 16, 1976 and raised on a kibbutz in Israel. He has traveled extensively since he was a teenager, living in South Africa, the UK, Laos, and the small island nation of Vanuatu.

Tidhar began publishing with a poetry collection in Hebrew in 1998, but soon moved to fiction, becoming a prolific author of short stories early in the 21st century. Story “Temporal Spiders, Spatial Webs” ...Read More

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Spotlight on: Robert Repino

Your debut novel Mort(e) came out in 2015 and launched the War with No Name Series. Tell us about that book and the world it introduced.

The sales team likes to call it either “Animal Farm on steroids” or “Animal Farm with machine guns.” In short, the series is about a war between humans and sentient animals. In this world, a hyperintelligent queen of a globe-spanning ant colony has vowed ...Read More

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Cory Doctorow: Breaking In

When I was a baby writer, I obsessively collected career advice from established writers, reading books and essays and attending panels on ‘‘How I broke in’’ featuring established pros. It’s a testament to the irrational, burning desire to publish that I continued to do this long after it became apparent that there was nothing of contemporary applicability in these discussions.

I mean, it was entertaining to hear a writer describe ...Read More

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TJ Klune: The Idea of Kindness

Travis John Klune was born May 20, 1982, in Roseburg OR, where he lived until his family relocated to Tucson AZ when he was 16. He moved to Virginia in 2013, where he worked in insurance before becoming a full-time writer in 2016.

Klune began publishing with Bear, Otter and the Kid (2011), and has authored numerous queer romances. His first work of genre interest was Burn (2012). Lambda Award ...Read More

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Photo Story: New Found Land

Austin Grossman, Sean Stewart & Neal Stephenson collaborated on Audible Original New Found Land: The Long Haul, released in June 2021. Stewart sent a photo of the team at Enchanted Rock State Natural Area in Texas: “No, seri­ously, we really were doing research!” For details on the proj­ect: <www.audible.com/pd/New-Found-Land-The-Long-Haul-Audiobook/B096BMCLT3>.

While you are here, please take a moment to support Locus with a one-time or recurring donation. We rely on ...Read More

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Stephen Graham Jones: Slasher Cycle

Stephen Graham Jones, a member of the Blackfeet Tribe, was born in 1972 in Midland TX, and grew up in Texas apart, from a year in Colorado when he was a teenager. He attended Texas Tech University, studying English and philosophy, and attained a master’s degree at the University of North Texas. He earned his PhD in creative writing at Florida State University. Jones taught at Texas Tech before accepting ...Read More

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Kameron Hurley: When Should You Compromise? How to Evaluate Editorial Feedback

Here’s some feedback I’ve received from editors, agents, and mar­keting managers in response to my work over the years:

“This is just a jumble of words.”

“I think this suffers from a failure of the imagination.”

“This is sorta too emotional.”

“Try again.”

One of the most difficult skills a writer must learn – whether writing novels, screenplays, marketing copy, or news articles – is how to receive, process, and ...Read More

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2021 Locus Awards Online Report

The Locus Awards Weekend took place on June 23-26, 2021, in its second virtual-only iteration. Connie Willis emceed the awards ceremony along with host Liza Trombi. There were over 150 registrations, and full members received a Locus t-shirt and awards program. There was also a sliding scale, attendance-only membership available.

This year’s online event added panels and doubled the number of readings. A pocket convention, the online events had seven ...Read More

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Spotlight on: Shelley Parker-Chan

Tell us about your debut novel She Who Became the Sun — the world where it takes place, and the characters who inhabit that world.

She Who Became the Sun is set in China in the mid-1350s, which was the last gasps of a period of short-lived Mongol rule over China — the Yuan dynasty. The Mongols were steppe warriors from a nomadic culture, and China was a sedentary civilisation ...Read More

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Spotlight on: Lucinda Roy

Tell us a bit about The Freedom Race—the world where it takes place, and the characters who inhabit that world.

In The Freedom Race, which is set in the future, a second civil war, referred to as the Sequel, has transformed the country into the Disunited States. Other kinds of instability—climate change, refugee crises, ideological divisions, and pandemics—have also taken a toll. After the Sequel, rural areas of the ...Read More

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Photo Story: Enchanted: A History of Fantasy Illustration

The “Enchanted: A History of Fantasy Illustration” exhibit, featuring pivotal works of science fiction and fantasy art from greats of the field both past and present, is on view at the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge MA from June 12-October 31, 2021. Bob Eggleton said, “It is truly a pinnacle for fantasy art to be recognized in such a venue. Curator Jesse Kowalski brought it all together.” For more information ...Read More

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Cassandra Khaw: All-Consuming

Zoe Khaw Joo Ee was born August 31, 1984 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, but has gone by Cassandra Khaw for the past 20 years. She lived in Malaysia until age 25, then spent ten years traveling before settling in Montreal, Canada. She has worked as a journalist and video game writer in addition to writing fiction, and is currently a senior scriptwriter at Ubisoft Montreal.

Khaw began publishing short fiction ...Read More

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Christopher Brown: Gonzo Transgressive

CHRISTOPHER TRACY BROWN was born June 10, 1964 in Des Moines IA. He grew up there, then went to Phillips Exeter, a prep school in New Hampshire, for high school (where his classmates included author Dan Brown; no relation). He spent a gap year traveling in Europe and working in Washington DC, then attended college at Tulane University in New Orleans, studying political economy, and spent a year at Oxford ...Read More

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Cory Doctorow: Tech Monopolies and the Insufficient Necessity of Interoperability

I care about monopolies for exactly one reason: self-determination. I don’t care about competition as an end unto itself, or fetishize “choice” for its own sake. What I care about is your ability to live your life in the way you think will suit you, to the greatest extent possible, and taking into account the obvious limits when other people’s needs and wants conflict with you realizing your own desires. ...Read More

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Spotlight on: Veronica G. Henry

Bacchanal is a richly imagined historical fantasy. Tell us a bit about the book: the world where it takes place, and the characters who inhabit that world.

Bacchanal is set against the backdrop of The Great Depression and culminates with the Oklahoma Dust Bowl. At the center of this maelstrom is an unusual young woman, Eliza Meeks. She’s alone, ostracized and struggling to navigate her reality – a family that ...Read More

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A.C. Wise: Dark Darlings

Alison Campbell-Wise was born December 30, 1979 in Montreal, Canada. She moved to New Jersey 20 years ago with her husband, and they now live in the Philadelphia PA area.

She began publishing short fic­tion in 2005. Notable stories include Nebula Award finalists “How the Trick Is Done” (2019) and novella Catfish Lullaby, Sunburst Award winner “The Sailing of the Henry Charles Morgan in Six Pieces of Scrimshaw (1841)” ...Read More

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Charles Yu: Adjacent Realities

CHARLES CHOWKAI YU was born January 3, 1976 in Los Angeles CA. He attended UC Berkeley, where he stud­ied molecular and cell biology, graduating in 1997, and then went to Columbia Law School, earning his law degree in 2001. He worked as a lawyer until 2014, when he took a job writing for SF drama Westworld on HBO. He went on to write for other shows (including Lodge 49 and ...Read More

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Kameron Hurley: Endings (And Beginnings)

Like most authors, I have more experience writing beginnings than I do endings, but perhaps not in the way one would expect. Some of this is an artifact of the linear way we have evolved to see time. It’s how many of us were taught to approach narrative. For many years I began every story with a scene, an inciting incident, a mood, a situation, and wrote until I figured ...Read More

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Spotlight on: Reiko Murakami

Reiko Murakami is a US-based concept art­ist and illustrator specializing in surreal fantasy and horror art. With her subtle and expressive gesture drawings she focuses on capturing moments filled with unspeakable emo­tions. Her illustrations have appeared on many projects such as Tor.com, Magic: the Gathering, and Basketful of Heads (Hill House Comics, DC). Her work has been exhibited at Nucleus Portland, Helikon Gallery, Krabjab Studio, Light Grey Art Lab and ...Read More

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Nghi Vo: Stories About Stories

Nghi Dong Vo was born December 4, 1981 in Peoria IL. She lived there until attending college at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign, where she studied political science and media studies. In 2007 she settled in Milwaukee WI.

Vo’s first story was “Gift of Flight” in 2007, and she has since pub­lished almost 20 stories in various publications. Her first book was Crawford Award winning novella The Empress of ...Read More

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Seasonal Bias in Speculative Fiction Awards Nominations by Douglas F. Dluzen & Christopher Mark Rose

It’s a little dangerous, after selling a story to a professional science fiction or fantasy publi­cation, to start calculating the odds of pulling in an award nomination. The draw is inexorable though – the Nebula Awards, the Hugos, World Fantasy, Locus. It’s the stuff of legends. Through the years, now-familiar SF/F names have stood to accept these awards, held them up to the light and heard that applause. It’s accomplish­ment, ...Read More

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Nnedi Okorafor: That Which Is Hers

Nnedimma Nkemdili Okorafor was born April 8, 1974 in Cincinnati OH to Igbo parents who emigrated from Nigeria in 1969. She earned a BA in rhetoric at the University of Illinois in 1996 and an MA in journalism from Michigan State University in 1999. She attended the University of Chicago, getting her MA in English in 2002 and complet­ing her PhD in 2007. She attended the Clarion writing workshop in ...Read More

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