Here’s the cover and synopsis for Evie Manieri’s upcoming novel Fortune’s Blight, the second book in The Shattered Kingdoms series.

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MIND MELD: How Science Fiction Changed Our Lives

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

This week, we asked our panelists the following:

Q: How has reading science fiction and fantasy changed you as a person or changed your life?

Here’s what they said…

Linda Nagata
Linda Nagata is the author of multiple novels and short stories including The Bohr Maker, winner of the Locus Award for best first novel, and the novella “Goddesses,” the first online publication to receive a Nebula award. Her story “Nahiku West” was a finalist for the 2013 Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award. Her newest science fiction novel is the near-future military thriller The Red: First Light. Linda has spent most of her life in Hawaii, where she’s been a writer, a mom, a programmer of database-driven websites, and lately an independent publisher. She lives with her husband in their long-time home on the island of Maui. Find her online at: MythicIsland.com

I’ve been reading science fiction and to a lesser extent fantasy for so long that it’s hard to say how it’s changed my life. I don’t recall a moment of waking up to a sense of wonder or to radical possibilities, because I’ve been reading this stuff since I was a kid. I think it’s more that SFF has shaped my life and my outlook.

Good science fiction tells a gripping story but it’s also a thought experiment that lets us imagine other worlds, or this world, changed. So it offers answers to the question of “How would things be if…?” Ideally, that’s an exercise that should lead to a more flexible, less dogmatic outlook. I don’t know who I would have been otherwise, but I do think I’ve benefitted from being immersed in fictional worlds that are so very different from the real world. I think it’s made me more open minded, more adaptable, and less averse to change—and that’s what I’ve come to think of as the science fictional mindset.

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Evie Manieri is fascinated by intricacy. She loves books with complicated plots where every detail matters.  Her debut novel from Tor Books is Blood’s Pride, first in her Shattered Kingdoms epic fantasy series. Evie grew up a product of the Philadelphia public schools, played French Horn, acted in drama club, sang in show choir then went on to Wesleyan University in Connecticut, studied theater and medieval history, majoring in Taking Herself Too Seriously. Her acting past ingrained in her ideas about pacing, dramatic  tension, holding audience’s attention, economy, and not dissipating energy that influence her writing. The next book in the Shattered Kingdoms trilogy, Fortune’s Blight, is due out later this year. She can be found on Goodreads, Twitter and via her website at EvieManieri.com.


SFFWRTCHT: Where’d your interest in speculative fiction come from?

Evie Manieri: Madeline L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time. Read it in fifth grade and was smote, in the biblical sense. My agent mentioned it in her bio. It’s why I queried her.
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