I was recently interviewed by Lavender Lass Books about Across the Broken Stars – my entry into this year’s Self-Published Fantasy Book-Off, run by Mark Lawrence. This episode is the audio version of that interview. Enjoy!
Gabriel Bergmoser and I sat down to discuss The Hunted (his latest thriller novel) in depth. This is the third time I’ve interviewed him, and somehow he keeps getting better. The Hunted is my favourite book of his and it was enthralling to dive into the mind of its creator. This episode is available in podcast and video form. Enjoy!
I chat with Rob for the second time to discuss his latest grimdark fantasy trilogy, The War Eternal. The trilogy follows Eska, a young magician struggling to reconcile her urges for revenge with her longing for human connection. The books include:
What does it take to write stories where readers’ decisions affect the outcome? Kate Heartfield is an author of several historical fantasy and interactive fiction stories, including The Road to Canterbury, and The Magician’s Workshop, published by Choice of Games. Her fiction has won or been shortlisted for the Nebula, Locus, Aurora and Crawford awards.
Justin Call graduated from Harvard University in 2012 with a Master’s in Literature and Creative Writing. He has studied fantasy literature for almost two decades and is the author of Master of Sorrows, Book 1 of The Silent Gods tetralogy. Justin is also the CEO of Broomstick Monkey Games and co-designer of the games Imperial Harvest, Royal Strawberries, Royal Scum, and 8 Kingdoms. He currently lives in Park City, Utah with his wife, his two sons, his Great Dane (Pippa) and his St. Bernard-Mastiff (Herbie).
In this interview, we dive deep into his creative process, explore how designing board games has helped his world building, and discuss how he’s writing one of the most challenging and subversive fantasy series of this decade.
A Canticle for Leibowitz is a 1959 post-apocalyptic sci-fi novel by Walter M. Miller Jr. It’s often described as one of the first post-apocalyptic stories. Without it, there would be no Book of Eli, The Stand, or most other post-apocalyptic tales.
Don’t just take my word for it. It won the 1961 Hugo Award – one of science fiction’s highest honours. Legendary scientist Carl Sagan described it as: “so tautly constructed, so rich in the accommodating details of an unfamiliar society that [it] sweep me along before I have even a chance to be critical”.
It’s a remarkable novel. I don’t have the space in one episode to fully analyse it, so today I’m focusing on just one thing: how it uses an unconventional structure to explore the theme and emotionally gut-punch readers. Enjoy!
Gabriel Bergmoser is a Melbourne based author and playwright. He’s written the Boone Shepard trilogy (I analysed book 3 in this episode of the podcast) along with multiple plays. His latest novel is The Hunted (aka Sunburnt Country in the UK), which comes out in mid-2020 from HarperCollins.
It was a pleasure to have Gabe back on the podcast to discuss his recent book & movie deals, along with other aspects of his life as a writer. Have a listen if you’re interested in:
– Gabe’s advice for being resilient and overcoming rejection;
– What it’s like to get a huge book deal with a major publisher (& an equally huge movie deal!);
– The biggest writing lesson he learnt from finishing the Boone Shepard trilogy;
Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo is a gritty YA fantasy heist story. It’s got a racing plot, an interesting setting, and amazing characters. In this episode, I analyse the relationship between Kaz and Inej, using Mary Robinette Kowal’s 6 relationship axes
:Mind – Both people have similar levels of intelligence.
Money – Both people have similar attitudes about money. They don’t both have to have the same amount. This is about what money is for and how it’s handled.
Morals – Similar moral compasses of right and wrong.
Manners – Similar senses of what is polite. So it’s possible to have the same manners and wildly different morals.
Monogamy – Similar attitudes about the relationship. You know that guy that thinks you are BFFs and you think you’re just colleagues?
Marx Brothers – You both find the same things funny.
Arguably more intelligent, but this often gets in the way of him
connecting with people. High IQ, low EQ – apart from when he’s
sociopathically manipulating people
Not as cunning or clever as Kaz, but with better genuine people
“he is a young criminal prodigy, ready to do anything for the right
price” – Leigh Bardugo. Wants money for selfish reasons (so he can destroy a
gang leader who hurt him)
Also wants money, but for unselfish reasons (so she can destroy
Rock solid, mainly because of her religious convictions.
Manipulative; views manners as a tool to use to further his goals.
Seems relatively kind; uses manners in an unconsciously kind way,
because she’s a kind person.
Has feelings for Inej, but puts up walls to protect himself.
Also has feelings for Kaz, but won’t commit to anything while he
still maintains his walls.
They both find it funny to upset the privledged, the cruel, the
sadistic. In many ways, their mutual hatred of abusive authority figures binds
After Dale from The Reading Gorilla podcast sent in a listener request, who was I to ignore it? This is an episode about Orson Scott Card’s sci-fi classic, Ender’s Game. Specifically, I examine how he crafted such an amazing twist. Enjoy!
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What does it mean to craft epic fantasy? How is it different that other forms of fantasy? What are it’s unique strengths, and potential pitfalls? All those questions and more answered in today’s episode, which focuses on The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson.