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Episode 61 of Speculate! – Pyr Roundtable with Lou Anders, Brenda Cooper, Gabrielle Harbowy and E.C. Myers

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Welcome to Episode 61 of Speculate! The Podcast for Writers, Readers and Fans.  We set a new record for single episode participation in this show with four distinguished guests: Brenda Cooper and E.C. Myers (authors of The Creative Fire and Quantum Coin, respectively), freelance editor Gabrielle Harbowy, and Pyr Books‘ editorial and art director Lou Anders speak for an hour on what has made Pyr such a successful speculative fiction imprint, where it’s been and where it’s going in the future.  This wide ranging discussion also looks at the finer points of how good editors work with good authors, how important a good cover is to an equally good book, and what makes Dragon Con such a scary (and amazing!) event every year.  Our shows normally don’t run this long, but we hope you’ll agree the extra discussion we got with all of these fine people was worth the extra time.  If you like what you hear, don’t forget to check back next week when we’ll start a new series of shows on the work of Joe Abercrombie.  Until then, thanks as always for listening, and please continue to spread the word about the show!

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Episode 60 of Speculate! — Amber Benson and Anton Strout Author Interview

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Welcome to Episode 60 of Speculate! The Podcast for Writers, Readers and Fans.  In this episode we (virtually) sit down for a discussion with urban fantasy authors Amber Benson and Anton Strout for a discussion of why they love doing what they do, why urban fantasy continues to appeal to such a wide audience and what the future looks like for the subgenre–and why they’re fired up to talk about it even after an exhausting go-round at New York Comic Con!  If you like what you hear, make sure to check back next week when we’ll begin a new triptych of shows on the work of Joe Abercrombie.  Until then, thanks as always for listening, and please continue to spread the word about the show!

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Episode 59 of Speculate! – Beneath Ceaseless Skies Writing Discussion

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Welcome to Episode 59 of Speculate! The Podcast for Writers, Readers and Fans.  In this episode we conclude our triptych of shows on the Beneath Ceaseless Skies magazine with a look at a few of the specific writing techniques used in the stories from the two issues we discussed during this series, focusing on ways to establish tone through language, work against reader expectations, use vignettes to engage the reader, and put together surprise endings–ones which don’t have to rely simply on the progression of the plot.  If you enjoy the conversation, don’t forget to check back next week for an interview with urban fantasy authors Amber Benson and Anton Strout.  Until then, thanks as always for listening, and please continue to spread the word about the show!

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Episode 58 of Speculate! – Scott H. Andrews Editor Interview

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Photo courtesy of the excellent Al Bogdan.

Welcome to Episode 58 of Speculate! The Podcast for Writers, Readers and Fans.  In this episode we continue our triptych of shows on the Beneath Ceaseless Skies magazine with an interview of its publisher and editor-in-chief Scott H. Andrews, who has a lot of interesting stuff to say about the origins of the magazine, his editorial philosophy, and why literary adventure fantasy is a seriously underserved portion of the speculative fiction market.  If you like what you hear, don’t forget to check back next week when we’ll conclude our triptych with a discussion of some writing techniques employed in stories published in Beneath Ceaseless Skies.  Until then, thanks as always for listening to the show, and please continue to spread the word!

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Episode 57 of Speculate! – Beneath Ceaseless Skies Magazine Review

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Welcome back for Episode 57 of Speculate! The Podcast for Writers, Readers and Fans.  After a busy summer of convention-going, workshops and interviews, we get back to our usual routine by going back to the beginning (so to speak), as we start our first triptych of shows on a short fiction magazine since our inaugural series of episodes last year.  Despite being in operation for only four years, Beneath Ceaseless Skies has already racked up an impressive list of authors, stories and awards, and we take a look at stories from the two most recent issues to see what all the buzz is about.  If you like what you hear, don’t forget to check back next week when we’ll interview Scott H. Andrews, BCS‘s editor-in-chief and publisher.  Until then, thanks as always for listening to the show, and please continue to spread the word!

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Episode 55 of Speculate! – The State of the Field, with Special Guests Mary Robinette Kowal and Michael Underwood

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Welcome back for Episode 55 of Speculate! The Podcast for Writers, Readers and Fans.  In this episode we take a second look at the state of the speculative fiction field with special guests Mary Robinette Kowal, former vice-president of SFWA and Hugo-award winning writer, and Michael Underwood, North American Sales and Marketing Manager for Angry Robot and the author of Geekomancy.  Our discussion (recorded at the recently concluded GenCon) covers a variety of topics, focusing particularly on new ventures in e-publishing, marketing strategies, and the differences between an author’s online and offline personas, and we hope you’ll find the conversation as interesting (and helpful) as we did.  If you like what you hear, don’t forget to check back next week for a series of short interviews with the intrepid participants in the Wellspring Workshop 2012.  Until then, thanks as always for listening, and please continue to spread the word!

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Episode 54 of Speculate! – Saladin Ahmed Writing Discussion

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Welcome back for Episode 54 of Speculate! The Podcast for Writers, Readers and Fans.  In this episode we conclude our quadtych of shows on the work of Saladin Ahmed with a look at some of the specific writing techniques used in his debut novel Throne of the Crescent Moon, focusing on narrative pace and character description, misdirection, filling in the world, character development, and cultural portrayals.  If you enjoy what you hear, don’t forget to check back soon for a series of short interviews from GenCon and the Wellspring workshop.  Until then, thanks as always for listening, and please continue to spread the word about the show!

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Episode 52 of Speculate! – Betsy Wollheim Editor Interview

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Photo courtesy of the talented Al Bogdan.

Welcome back for Episode 52 of Speculate! The Podcast for Writers, Readers and Fans.  In this episode we continue our sequence of shows on Throne of the Crescent Moon, the new sword and sorcery book by Saladin Ahmed, with an interview of DAW Books president, editor-in-chief and veteran observer of the field Betsy Wollheim.  In this discussion Betsy explains what she enjoyed the most about editing Saladin’s book, but also ventures farther afield to talk about her general editorial philosophy, what authors most need to remember about what they choose to write and what the future of the industry looks like–and why she’s bullish on the potential of E-books and digital publishing. If you like what you hear, don’t forget to check back next week when we’ll interview Saladin himself.  Until then, thanks as always for listening to the show, and please continue to spread the word!

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Episode 51 of Speculate! – Saladin Ahmed Novel Review (Throne of the Crescent Moon)

ThroneOfTheCrescentMoon

Welcome back for Episode 51 of Speculate! The Podcast for Writers, Readers and Fans.  In this episode we begin a new triptych plus one (is that a quadtych?) of shows on the work of Saladin Ahmed, who previously appeared on Episode 2 of Speculate! as we discussed one of his short stories; this time we’re looking at his debut novel Throne of the Crescent Moon, a sword and sorcery tale which NPR calls “Lord of the Rings meets Arab Spring.”  With a line like that, how could we resist taking our own look at a book with dervishes, ghuls, and a fantastic city with an Arabian flair?  If you enjoy the discussion, don’t forget to check back next week when we’ll be conducting an interview with the book’s editor, DAW president Betsy Wollheim.  Until then, thanks as always for listening, and please continue to spread the word about the show!

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Episode 50 of Speculate! – Ian Tregillis Author Interview

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Welcome back for Episode 50 of Speculate! The Podcast for Writers, Readers and Fans.  We celebrate turning 50 (that sounds less ominous when we’re talking about episode numbers, somehow) with an interesting interview with Ian Tregillis, author of the alternative history series The Milkweed Triptych (he likes that last word as much as we do).  Here we get a chance to talk to Ian about alternative history, how Nazis and warlocks make a cool mixture for speculative fiction purposes, and other miscellaneous subjects like covers, audiobooks and batboys, not necessarily in that order.  If you like what you hear, don’t forget to tune in next week when we’ll start our next triptych of shows on Saladin Ahmed‘s Throne of the Crescent Moon.  Until then, thanks as always for listening to the show, and please continue to spread the word!

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