In Defense of the Defenders

I’m going to break my rule about keeping this blog dedicated to writing, because there’s currently a scandal going on in the science fiction community. Normally I’d keep my mouth shut on a scandal, but things like this do affect us as writers, and it’s good to think about them. For context, Marion Zimmer Bradley’s children have both spoken out publicly (one on the blog of author Deirdre Saoirse Moen and the other on facebook) accusing their mother of having molested them. Continue reading

“We Can’t Afford To Pay…”

Let’s talk money.

I don’t know if it’s beginning to happen more often or if I’m just noticing it more acutely recently, but the phrase, “We don’t pay our writers…” (and the usual variations on it) is showing up in submission guidelines all over the place. The closely related, “We can only offer token payment…” is alarmingly common. Folks, even if you’re just starting out and hungry for exposure, you should regard non-payment, token-payment, and royalty-only offers for publication as a huge red flag. Continue reading

New Classics: Five Recent SF & F Books You Should Read

I’m back from BayCon, which was a tremendously fun con, where I was on eight (yes, eight) different panels. Most of those were me talking about writing, but the last one — on Monday after a good chunk of of attendees had already left — gave me the chance to talk as a reader. It was a panel called “New Classics: Five Recent SF & F Books You Should Read,” which I shared with writer Laurel Anne Hill and uber-reader Randy Smith. It was surprisingly difficult for me to boil the great science fiction and fantasy of the past decade down to a list of five, but I managed to do so, and so I thought it would be worth sharing my picks here. Continue reading