Author Archive

James Dashner was born and raised in Georgia but now lives in the Rocky Mountains with his family. He has four kids, which some might think is too many but he thinks is just right. Once upon a time, James studied accounting and worked in the field of finance, but has been writing full time for several years. (He doesn’t miss numbers. At all.)

In his free time, James loves to read, watch movies and (good) TV shows, snow ski, and read. (Reading was mentioned twice on purpose.) Most of all, he’s thankful that he gets to make a living writing stories and considers himself pretty much the luckiest guy on the planet.

I was lucky enough to interview James about the Maze Runner book series, the (huge!!) new movie based on it, and much more!


Kristin Centorcelli: I’m very, very excited for The Maze Runner movie, and really enjoy the books as well! What inspired you to write the series?

James Dashner: Lots of different things, accumulated over the years. I think the first spark came when I watched The Shining as a kid. I was scarred for life by the scene at the end where Jack chases his kid through the garden maze with an axe. Books like Lord of the Flies and Ender’s Game. The TV show Lost. I think you can see all those influences.
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In this series, I ask various publishing professionals (including authors, bloggers, editors, agents etc.) to recommend 2-3 authors or books they feel haven’t received the recognition they deserve.

Today’s recommendations are by Sarah Knight. Sarah Knight is a senior editor at Simon & Schuster, where, in addition to her regular S&S list, she also oversees the new speculative fiction imprint Simon451, which launches its first set of titles in October 2014 (among them Gillian Anderson’s debut SF thriller, A Vision of Fire). She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and their ill-behaved cat, Doug, and goes by @mcsnugz on Twitter.

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In this series, I ask various publishing professionals (including authors, bloggers, editors, agents etc.) to recommend 2-3 authors or books they feel haven’t received the recognition they deserve.

Today’s recommendations are by Richard Kadrey. He is the author of dozens of stories, plus ten novels, including Sandman Slim, Kill the Dead, Aloha from Hell, Devil Said Bang, Kill City Blues, Metrophage and Butcher Bird. His Wired magazine cover story, Carbon Copy, was made into one of the worst movies of 2001. It starred Bridget Fonda. Sorry, Bridget.

He has been immortalized as an action figure. “Kadray [sic]: The Invincible Wizard” was a villain in an episode of the Blackstar animated TV series.

Kadrey created and wrote the Vertigo comics mini-series ACCELERATE, which was illustrated by the Pander Brothers. He plans to do more comic work in the near future.

He has written and spoken about art, culture and technology for Wired, The San Francisco Chronicle, Discovery Online, The Site, SXSW and Wired For Sex on the G4 cable network.

Richard has no qualifications for anything he does.
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[Do you have an idea for a future Mind Meld? Let us know!]

There were so many wonderful debut authors in 2013, and the last post was so much fun, I thought it might be high time we give 2014 debut authors their turn:

Q: What are the most fun/unusual/interesting/etc. things you’ve learned since becoming a published author?

Here’s what they had to say…

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Jack Heckel is the writing team of John Peck, an IP attorney living in Long Beach, CA who is looking forward to the upcoming release of Once Upon A Rhyme, and Harry Heckel, a roleplaying game designer and fantasy author, who is looking forward to the publication of Happily Never After.

“Jack” — er…”Jack” and Prince Charming, that is — kindly answered a few of my questions about ONCE UPON A RHYME!
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Peter Liney was born in Wiltshire but has spent a large part of his life overseas. He has written sitcoms for ABC and Channel 4, and drama for the BBC and South African radio. The Detainee is his debut novel. He lives in Salisbury.

Peter was kind enough to chat with me about INTO THE FIRE, the next book in his dystopian series.


Kristin Centorcelli: Book 2 of your dystopian trilogy, INTO THE FIRE (after THE DETAINEE), is already out in the UK, and will hit the US in 2015. Will you tell us a bit of what we should expect from this instalment, and our hero, Clancy?
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In this series, I ask various publishing professionals (including authors, bloggers, editors, agents etc.) to recommend 2-3 authors or books they feel haven’t received the recognition they deserve.

Today’s recommendations are by Sarah McCarry. Sarah McCarry is the author of the novels All Our Pretty Songs, Dirty Wings, and About A Girl (summer 2015) and the editor and publisher of the chapbook series Guillotine.
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Lou Anders‘ research on Norse mythology while writing Frostborn turned into a love affair with Viking culture and a first visit to Norway. He hopes the series will appeal to boys and girls equally. Anders is the recipient of a Hugo Award for editing and a Chesley Award for art direction. He has published over 500 articles and stories on science fiction and fantasy television and literature. Frostborn, which Publishers Weekly described as “thoroughly enjoyable” (starred review), is his first middle grade novel. A prolific speaker, Anders regularly attends writing conventions around the country. He and his family reside in Birmingham, Alabama. You can visit Anders online at louanders.com and ThronesandBones.com, on Facebook, and on Twitter at @ThronesandBones.

Lou was kind enough to chat with me about Frostborn!


Kristin Centorcelli: Lou, let’s talk Frostborn. Will you tell us a bit about the book, the world that it’s set in, and why you decided to write it?

Lou Anders: Frostborn is the story of Karn Korlundsson, a boy growing up knowing he will one day inherit the responsibility of running a large farm but who would much rather play the board game Thrones and Bones, and Thianna, a half-human, half-frost giant girl, who at seven feet tall, is picked on horribly by her peers in the frost giant village for being so short—they don’t let her play any reindeer games, you could say—and wishes she could expunge her human half. The two of them are driven out of their individual homes by unforeseen circumstances and meet in the icebound wilderness, where they help each other survive, learn about themselves, and overcome monsters and two separate sets of bad guys. Frostborn is the first book in the Thrones and Bones series, and it is a middle-grade fantasy series written for boys and girls ages eight and up. It was just recently released by Random House Children’s Books new imprint, Crown Books for Young Readers (headed by the brilliant and famous Phoebe Yeh), and I have been blown away by the reaction to it thus far.
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Austin Basis plays JT on the hit CW show, BEAUTY & THE BEAST, and I was thrilled to be able to ask him about the show, acting, and more!

A complete bio for Austin can be found at his website.


Kristin Centorcelli: You play JT Forbes, a scientist and childhood friend of Vincent Keller (the “Beast”) on BEAUTY AND THE BEAST. Will you tell us more about the show and your character? What kind of prep have you had to do for the role?
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James A. Moore is the author of over twenty novels, including the critically acclaimed Fireworks, Under The Overtree, Blood Red, Deeper, the Serenity Falls trilogy (featuring his recurring anti-hero, Jonathan Crowley) and his most recent novels Blind Shadows, Seven Forges and the sequel The Blasted Lands.

The author cut his teeth in the industry writing for Marvel Comics and authoring over twenty role-playing supplements for White Wolf Games, including Berlin by Night, Land of 1,000,000 Dreams and The Get of Fenris tribe. He also penned the White Wolf novels Vampire: House of Secrets and Werewolf: Hellstorm. Moore’s first short story collection, Slices, sold out before ever seeing print. He has twice been nominated for the Bram Stoker Award and spent three years as an officer in the Horror Writers Association, first as Secretary and later as Vice President. He currently lives in the suburbs of Atlanta, Georgia.

James was kind enough to chat with me about his newest book, ALIEN: SEA OF SORROWS!


Kristin Centorcelli: James, your new book in the Alien ‘verse, ALIEN: SEA OF SORROWS just hit the shelves. Will you tell us a little about it?

James A. Moore: Well, it’s a bit of a twist, I think. 20th Century Fox had a few ideas for expanding the universe and ALIEN: SEA OF SORROWS comes from one of those ideas. The story is linked into two other stories that take place a LONG time before SEA does. In this case a planet with a xenomorph infestation is encountered by Ellen Ripley (In the excellent ALIEN: OUT OF THE SHADOWS by Tim Lebbon) and the planet is left and abandoned. And a few centuries later a descendant of Ellen Ripley is working with the crew to find out why there are still some problems with the terraforming that was done to the planet. Ripley was marked by Aliens when she wreaked havoc on the planet and the remaining xenomorphs catch one whiff of our here’s blood and immediately recognize him as a descendant. When Weyland-Yutani catches hold of that fact, the fun begins. Rest assured, Weyland_Yutani is back with a vengeance and they still have plans for the aliens.
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In this series, I ask various publishing professionals (including authors, bloggers, editors, agents etc.) to recommend 2-3 authors or books they feel haven’t received the recognition they deserve.

Today’s recommendations are by Jamie Schultz. Jamie Schultz has worked as a rocket test engineer, an environmental consultant, a technical writer, and a construction worker, among other things. He lives in Dallas, Texas. His first novel, Premonitions, received a starred review from Library Journal, who called it “a sterling urban fantasy debut with a great cast of characters.”
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MIND MELD: Our Favorite Gadgets from SF

[Do you have an idea for a future Mind Meld? Let us know!]

In part 2 of our Mind Meld duo featuring fictional gadgetry (Part 1 featured magical items from fantasy), we asked our panelists this:

Q: Where’s my holo-deck, and aren’t we supposed to have flying cars?? What gadget (or gadgets) from SF(from Golden Age to the present), would you like to see go from Science Fiction to Science Fact? Are there any oldies that you were sure would be reality by now?

Here’s what they had to say…

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[NOTE: This is part of a series of Q&As with the Shirley Jackson Award nominees.]

Nina Allan was born in Whitechapel, London, grew up in the Midlands and West Sussex, and studied Russian literature at the University of Exeter and Corpus Christi College, Oxford.

“I wrote my first short story at the age of six. Recurring obsessions include old clocks and rare insects, forgotten manuscripts and abandoned houses. Writers who have inspired and continue to inspire me include among many others Vladimir Nabokov, Iris Murdoch, Joyce Carol Oates, Paul Auster, J. G Ballard, Roberto Bolano, M. John Harrison, Shirley Jackson, Kelly Link, and of course Christopher Priest, my partner and first reader. We live and work in the historic seaside town of Hastings, East Sussex.

My stories have appeared regularly in premier British speculative fiction magazines Interzone, Black Static and Crimewave, and have featured in the anthologies Best Horror of the Year #2, The Year’s Best SF #28 and The Year’s Best Science Fiction and Fantasy 2012 and 2013. My story ‘Angelus’ won the Aeon Award in 2007, and short fiction of mine has shown up on BFS and BSFA shortlists on several occasions.

A first collection of my short fiction, A Thread of Truth, was published by Eibonvale Press in 2007, followed by my story cycle The Silver Wind in 2011. My most recent books are the story collection Microcosmos (NewCon Press March 2013) the novella Spin (TTA Press 2013) and Stardust: The Ruby Castle Stories (PS Publishing April 2013). My first novel, The Race, set in an alternate and near-future version of southeast England, will be published in summer 2014 by NewCon Press.”

Nina was kind enough to chat with me about her Shirley Jackson Award nominated novella, THE GATEWAY.


Kristin Centorcelli: Congrats on the Shirley Jackson Award nomination! Will you tell us about your story and what inspired you to write it?
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[NOTE: This is part of a series of Q&As with the Shirley Jackson Award nominees.]

Rosanne lives in South London, so it’s no surprise she has a story titled “Lambeth North” in the anthology Horror Without Victims. A longstanding member of the precariat, Rosanne engages in a variety of occupations including freelance editing, copywriting and care work.

Her novella Helen’s Story (PS Publishing) has been shortlisted for the 2013 Shirley Jackson prize and she has contributed to anthologies such as Rustblind and Silverbright (with Mat Joiner), Never Again: Weird Fiction Against Racism and Fascism, Extended Play: the Elastic Book of Music, The Slow Mirror: New Fiction by Jewish Writers, Conflicts, The Horror Anthology of Horror Anthologies and a new science fiction collection, Life Seed. You can visit her website here: rosannerabinowitz.wordpress.com

Rosanne was kind enough to answer a few of my questions about HELEN’S STORY!


Kristin Centorcelli: Congrats on the Shirley Jackson Award nomination! Will you tell us about your novella and what inspired you to write it?
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[NOTE: This is part of a series of Q&As with the Shirley Jackson Award nominees.]

Michael Rowe was born in Ottawa in 1962 and has lived in Beirut, Havana, Geneva, and Paris. An award-winning journalist, and literary nonfiction writer, he is the author of Writing Below the Belt, a critically-acclaimed study of censorship, erotica and popular culture, as well as the essay collections Looking for Brothers and Other Men’s Sons. His essays, articles, and reviews have appeared in the Globe & Mail, National Post, The Advocate, and The Huffington Post, as well as CFQ, The Scream Factory, All-Hallows, among many others. For 17 years he was the first-tier Canadian correspondent for Fangoria. He has won the Lambda Literary Award, the Randy Shilts Award, and the Spectrum Award, and has been a finalist for the National Magazine Award, the Associated Church Press Award, and the International Horror Guild Award. As the creator and editor of the critically acclaimed horror anthologies Queer Fear and Queer Fear 2, he was hailed by Clive Barker in 2002 as having “changed forever the shape of horror fiction.” He is married and lives in Toronto. Enter, Night was his first novel. His second, Wild Fell, was published in December 2013 by ChiZine Publications.

Michael kindly answered a few of my questions…


Kristin Centorcelli: Congrats on the Shirley Jackson Award nomination! Will you tell us about your novel and what inspired you to write it?
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In this series, I ask various publishing professionals (including authors, bloggers, editors, agents etc.) to recommend 2-3 authors or books they feel haven’t received the recognition they deserve.

Today’s recommendations are by AJ Colucci. A.J. Colucci is the critically acclaimed author of THE COLONY and SEEDERS, which combine true, cutting-edge science with the adrenaline-rush of a thriller. SEEDERS was described by Douglas Preston as “gripping and brilliantly original.” Her debut novel THE COLONY received a starred review in Publishers Weekly, and Booklist called it “a frightening combination of well-researched science and scenes of pure horror.” A.J. Colucci was a journalist and editor for 15 years and has authored hundreds of magazine and newspaper articles.
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[NOTE: This is part of a series of Q&As with the Shirley Jackson Award nominees.]

Mark Morris became a full-time writer in 1988 on the Enterprise Allowance Scheme, and a year later saw the release of his first novel, Toady. He has since published a further sixteen novels, among which are Stitch, The Immaculate, The Secret of Anatomy, Fiddleback, The Deluge and four books in the popular Doctor Who range.

His short stories, novellas, articles and reviews have appeared in a wide variety of anthologies and magazines, and he is editor of the highly-acclaimed Cinema Macabre, a book of fifty horror movie essays by genre luminaries, for which he won the 2007 British Fantasy Award.

His most recently published or forthcoming work includes a novella entitled It Sustains for Earthling Publications, a Torchwood novel entitled Bay of the Dead, several Doctor Who audios for Big Finish Productions, a follow-up volume to Cinema Macabre entitled Cinema Futura and a new short story collection, Long Shadows, Nightmare Light.


Kristin Centorcelli: Congrats on the Shirley Jackson Award nomination! Will you tell us about your novella and what inspired you to write it?
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[NOTE: This is part of a series of Q&As with the Shirley Jackson Award nominees.]

Nicole Cushing is an author of dark fiction.

She is the author of the novellas Children of No One (recently nominated for the Shirley Jackson Award) and I Am the New God.

The anthology Werewolves & Shapeshifters: Encounters With The Beast Within includes Nicole’s short fiction (alongside stories by Neil Gaiman, George R.R. Martin, Charlaine Harris, and Chuck Palahniuk). Three of her tales received honorable mentions for Ellen Datlow’s Best Horror of the Year, Volume 5. One of her stories was selected for the Tangent Online 2013 Recommended Reading List. Several of her stories have been (or are currently being) adapted for audio presentation on podcasts such as Tales to Terrify, Pseudopod, and Cast Macabre. All told, Nicole has sold well over twenty short stories to various markets in the U.S. and U.K.

Her essay on the racism of H.P. Lovecraft has been quoted by The Guardian and linked to by The Atlantic Monthly.

She invites correspondence via Facebook, Twitter, or (if one must be old-fashioned about it) email at nicolecushingwriter (at) gmail (dot) com. A native of Maryland, she now lives with her husband in Indiana.

Nicole was kind enough to answer a few of my questions…


Kristin Centorcelli: Congrats on the Shirley Jackson Award nomination! Will you tell us about your novella and what inspired you to write it?
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[NOTE: This is part of a series of Q&As with the Shirley Jackson Award nominees.]

Kit Reed is the author of the Alex Award-winning Thinner Than Thou and many other novels, including The Night Children, her first young adult work. Reed has been nominated for the World Fantasy Award and has been a James W. Tiptree Award finalist. Kit Reed lives in Middletown, CT, where she is Resident Writer at Wesleyan University.

Kit kindly answered a few questions about her Shirley Jackson Award nominated collection The Story Until Now.


Kristin Centorcelli: Congrats on the Shirley Jackson Award nomination! Will you tell us a bit about your collection?
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[NOTE: This is part of a series of Q&As with the Shirley Jackson Award nominees.]

Jared Shurin set up the publishing house Jurassic London in 2011, and has edited or co-edited 9 anthologies of original fiction in conjunction with not-for-profit partners such as English PEN, Tate Britain and the Royal Observatory. In 2013 he was selected as one of the Guardian/Hospital Club’s top ten Pioneers and Innovators in publishing. His work as an editor and a blogger has been nominated for several prizes, including the British Fantasy, BSFA and Hugo Awards. He is on Twitter at @pornokitsch and blogs at www.pornokitsch.com.

Jared kindly answered a few of my questions…


Kristin Centorcelli: Congrats on the Shirley Jackson Award nomination! Will you tell us about the nominated anthology and what inspired the collection?
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