Monthly Archives: June 2017

Fireflies, 6/16/17

Every year we have fireflies in our yard, and every year I intend to go out with a camera and take a picture of them, and then I always forget. Not this year! Last night and went and made a first attempt. It turned out… adequate! I need to take a longer exposure, I think, […]

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The Big Idea: Nicky Drayden

Coincidence: Random events that merely give the appearance of being connected, or… something more? Not so coincidentially, Nicky Drayden is thinking about coincidence, and how it plays into her debut novel The Prey of Gods. What are the odds that she will tell you about it here? Pretty good! NICKY DRAYDEN: Have you ever been […]

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The Big Idea: Michael Johnston

What does it take for a civilization to be “too big to fail” — and can any civilization in fact make it to that particular point? In writing his novel Soleri, author Michael Johnston had reason to consider this particular question, and came to a civilization near the Nile River for inspiration. MICHAEL JOHNSTON: I […]

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The Big Idea: Steven R. Boyett

A World War II bomber gets sucked through time and space — and that’s the easy part of Fata Morgana. What was the harder part? As Steven R. Boyett explains, it’s everything else that he and co-writer Ken Mitchroney had to build up around that initial big idea. (Disclosure: As you can see from the […]

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New Books and ARCs, 6/12/17

Hey, do you like books?  (This is a rhetorical question. If you are at this particular site and don’t like books, I really don’t know what to say to you.) Here are some new books and ARCs that have come to the Scalzi Compound in the very recent past. See anything you’d want to add […]

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Comey at the Senate

Hey, Scalzi! It’s me, your fictional interlocutor! Oh, God, you again. You know why I’m here! This is about the James Comey testimony yesterday, isn’t it? Correct!  *sighs* Fine, let’s do this. James Comey testimony! Your thoughts! Well, assuming Comey was truthful and reasonably accurate in his testimony, and to be clear I suspect he […]

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The Big Idea: Catherynne M. Valente

Catherynne M. Valente is one of the most interesting writers in speculative fiction today, not in the least because when she gets worked up about something, she doesn’t just yell about it — she creates art about it. This explains her latest, The Refrigerator Monologues, and now Cat is here to explain it to you. […]

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The Big Idea: A. J. Hartley

In today’s Big Idea for Firebrand, author A. J. Hartley explains that when it comes to worldbuilding, like Ringo in the Beatles, he gets by with a little help from his friends. A. J. HARTLEY: The core of the Steeplejack series, the idea at its heart, came out of the collision of two smaller ideas […]

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The Dispatcher Wins the Audie Award for Best Original Work

Breaking my week-long hiatus here, but I think this is a pretty good reason: The Dispatcher won an Audie Award! It won in the category of Best Original Work, one of the three categories it was nominated in (the other two categories were Science Fiction and Excellence in Marketing). The “Original Work” category is for […]

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