[Do you have an idea for a future Mind Meld? Let us know!]
We asked this week’s panelists…
Here’s what they said…
Tropes are a funny thing. To some extent, knowing and expecting what’s going to happen next in a story – anticipating a particular structure and story elements – is why we’re drawn to specific genres and sub-genres. Many romance readers are looking for boy meets girl, boy loses girl (or girl loses boy) but they happily (and sexily) get together at the end. Hard SF readers may be reading for a Big Idea and exploring how it changes our society, but be less interested in the characters moving that big idea around on the stage. Urban Fantasy readers may be looking for tough – but vulnerable! – heroines put into paranormal situations that may seem harrowing, but all work out at the end. And in Epic Fantasy, many still expect the White Hats (Stark white!) to Save the World.
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Many of us here at SF Signal are Warhammer fans, and we’re excited whenever a new Warhammer book is releases…like Nick Kyme’s War of Vengeance: the Great Betrayal.
here’s the synopsis from Black Library:
Thousands of years before the rise of men, the dwarfs and elves are stalwart allies and enjoy a era of unrivalled peace and prosperity. But when dwarf trading caravans are attacked and their merchants slain, the elves are accused of betrayal. Quick to condemn the people of Ulthuan as traitors, the mountain lords nevertheless try to prevent conflict, but the elves’ arrogance undoes any chance of reconciliation and war is inevitable. Snorri Halfhand, son of the High King and no particular friend of the elves, is at the vanguard of the war with his cousin Morgrim Blackbeard. At the city of Tor Alessi a vast army stands against the dwarfs. Here Snorri will meet his destiny against the elven King Caledor as the first blow is struck in a conflict that could bring about the fall of two great civilisations.
And here’s the book info from Amazon US:
- Paperback: 416 pages
- Publisher: Black Library (October 25, 2012)
- ISBN-10: 1849701911
- ISBN-13: 978-1849701914
BRIEF SYNOPSIS: The Thunder Wolves, a super-elite military team, hunt down their zombie-like brother before he can kill again.
PROS: Perfect pacing; gripping and gory action; characters you care about; high quality production value.
CONS: I could nitpick that one character distractingly sounded too much like Arnold Schwarzenegger.
BOTTOM LINE: I cannot imagine how this could have been a more enjoyable listening experience.
- The Teeming Brain interviews Stephen Jones (The Mammoth Book of Best New Horror).
- Thanks to this helpful post at The Black Library, I’ve added the following authors to the list of sf/f authors who blog:
- Free Sample: Marooned notes that PS Publishing has posted the first 17 (PDF) pages of Gilbert and Edgar on Mars, a forthcoming novella written by British science fiction author Eric Brown.
- URL Update: Grasping for the Wind.
- @Suvudu: The Trouble with Zombies.
- SCI FI Wire lists 6 most awesome Stephen King horror films (plus 3 that sucked).
Short fiction anthologies come in many flavors: some contain original fiction and some are comprised of reprints; they can be themed or non-themed; they may restrict themselves to a certain sub-genre of speculative fiction… But one thing they all have in common is that it’s Editors that put them together.
Read on to see their illuminating responses…
My experience to date in anthology editing is rather thinner than that of most of my colleagues, as I have edited only “Best of the Year” collections. That makes my job easier on several grounds. Compared to an original anthologist, I don’t have to commission stories, nor wade through slush, nor work with authors to improve their submissions (either by line editing or by suggesting more dramatic changes). Compared to many reprint anthologists, I don’t have to look through nearly as many stories, and the authors I reprint are likely to be pretty accessible. (I have heard some harrowing stories about difficulties with finding out who controls the estate of dead authors, and also of difficulties working with authors’ heirs with unusual ideas of the market potential for reprinting old short stories.
The story of the conception of my books is simple enough. For many years, as an offshoot of my reviewing work for Locus (and prior to that, Tangent Online), I have prepared a list of the best stories of the year, organizing them (on occasion) as “virtual” best of the year books. A few years ago I had the thought that one market segment that was underrepresented in anthologies of this sort was online fiction. I suggested to Sean Wallace at Prime Books an anthology of the best online fiction of the year. Sean was unsure of the sales potential of such a book, but shortly later he suggested that we simply do a pair of more traditional Best of the Year anthologies: one for Science Fiction, one for Fantasy. (As of this year, those two books have been combined into one – and, happily, I am finally doing a Best Online short fiction book, Unplugged, for Wyrm Publishing.)