Anton Strout was born in the Berkshire Hills mere miles from writing heavyweights Nathaniel Hawthorne and Herman Melville. He currently lives in the haunted corn maze that is New Jersey (where nothing paranormal ever really happens, he assures you). He is the author of the Simon Canderous urban fantasy series and the Spellmason Chronicles for Ace Books, a division of Penguin Random House. Anton is also the author of many short tales published in anthologies by DAW Books. His latest book, Incarnate, the third Spellmason Chronicles book, is coming out September 30, 2014. In his scant spare time, his is a writer, a sometimes actor, sometimes musician, occasional RPGer, and the worlds most casual and controller smashing video gamer. He currently works in the exciting world of publishing and yes, it is as glamorous as it sounds. He is currently hard at work on his next book and be found lurking the darkened hallways of antonstrout.com or talking with your favorite SF&F authors on The Once and Future Podcast, where he is host and content curator.

Keeping It Fresh, or How To Be a Good Judge of Character

by Anton Strout

When you do something for a long time like, say, writing an ongoing series, there’s always the danger of your books going rotten like weeks old fruits or vegetables. Sure, the characters were nice and fresh in book one, but three books in they’re looking a little too squishy and unpalatable.

Never fear, dear reader! I’m here to tell you what it takes to keep an ongoing series from going rotten and boring you!
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Check out Blake Morrow‘s gargoylish cover art and the synopsis of the novel Incarnate by Anton Strout, the latest in the series A Spellmason Chronicle
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Fantasy author Anton Strout was born in the Berkshire Hills mere miles from writing heavyweights Nathaniel Hawthorne and Herman Melville and currently lives in the haunted corn maze that is New Jersey (where nothing paranormal ever really happens, he assures you). He is the author of the paranormal detectiveseries Simon Canderous (Dead To Me, Deader Still, Dead Matter and Dead Waters) and the urban fantasy series The Spellmason Chronicles, consisting of Alchemystic and, just out today, Stonecast. Anton is also the author of many short fiction tales. In addition to writing, Anton endeavors to bring authors and readers together through a weekly news show format called The Once & Future Podcast. You can find out more about Anton at his website (antonstrout.com), on Facebook and Twitter as @AntonStrout.

Writing, or How America’s Favorite Lower Midlist Urban Fantasy Author Contends with Finding A Rotting Corpse

By Anton Strout

Every book — not just my own urban fantasy ones — is a crime scene.

So every time I sit down at the computer to start a new project, I’m staring down the cold steel barrel of zero word count. Then it’s up to me to establish motives, hunt down all the characters, pay attention to the details as I sort through the clues, and eventually put down on the page whodunit.

But it’s arriving at that crime scene and finding that dead rotting book body without knowing who, what, when, where, how, or why that most writers fear.

How do you solve the crime that is the empty page?
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MIND MELD: The Intersection Between Gothic Horror and Urban Fantasy

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

This week, just in time for Halloween, we asked our distinguished panelists about Gothic and Urban Fantasy…

The theme of this year’s World Fantasy Convention is “Northern Gothic and Urban Fantasy”. The thesis is that Urban Fantasy represents the new Gothic; castles and haunted locations have been replaced by the Modern City.

Q: How do you see the intersection between Gothic Horror and modern Urban Fantasy? How connected are these two genres in your mind?

This is what they had to say…

Lyda Morehouse
Lyda Morehouseis the author of the Archangel Protocol novels, most recently Resurrection Code, out from Mad Norwegian Press. She also writes novels as Tate Halloway. Check out LydaMorehouse.com to find out more about her and her work.

I suppose if you go back far enough, this is a valid theory. It doesn’t, however, happen to be mine. Probably because I’m not literate enough. I’m not sure I’ve read a single book that Michael Ashley or John Clute references in their essays.
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