B57 Mini Interviews with Nicole Givenz Kurtz, Joshua Bilmes, and Mur Lafferty

The Boskone Mini Interviews are back, which means that Boskone 57 is now only a couple of months away. We are particularly excited to share this year’s mini interviews, which so completely capture the love of SF/F and science, the fannish energy within our community, and the clever wit of our participants. We are also delighted to share mini interviews from participants who are new to Boskone as well as those who have returned after long absences.

There is something incredibly special about the Boskone community. We are so glad that you have joined us for our first set of our Boskone 57 mini interviews and look forward to seeing you for a fantastic convention in February 2020.

Kicking off this year’s mini interviews in style is Nicole Givens Kurtz (who is new to Boskone), Joshua Bilmes (who is one of our favorite resident agents), and Mur Lafferty (who has been away, but is now back. Huzzah!). Please help us to welcome them all. Leave questions, share this post, or just stop by to say “hi.”

Nicole Givens Kurtz

Nicole Givens Kurtz is a published author, educator, and publisher. She’s know for her science fiction mystery series, CYBIL LEWIS. Her works have been published in over 40 anthologies and publications. She’s an active SFWA member. Her work has appeared in 2018 Bram Stoker Award Finalist, Sycorax’s Daughters. Her novels have finaled in science fiction awards, Dream Realm Awards, EPPIE Awards, and Fresh Awards. Readers can support Nicole’s #OwnVoices stories by becoming a patron of her Patreon.

Visit Nicole on their Facebook, Twitter, or website.

What is it about Boskone that makes this the convention you choose to attend each year? Or if this is your first Boskone, what attracted you most to Boskone this year?

I have heard wonderful things about Boskone and about its inclusive programming. I liked working with Erin for WorldCon programming. She is the reason I’m attending this year.

Bonus: Up for a challenge? Give us a haiku or limerick about Boskone!

Boskone in the snow
Fandom fun in the coldness
Geek loving warms us

Authors: Fans often ask authors to talk about their favorite main characters, but what about the side characters? Who is one of your favorite sidekicks or secondary/tertiary characters who have had a lesser role in your work?

My favorite sidekick of any of the characters and stories I’ve told is Jane, from my Cybil Lewis series. She’s younger than my private inspector, and she’s spunkier. She loves hard, is fiercely loyal, but doesn’t miss a chance to point out her own personal growth to her mentor. I love writing her because she’s so, well, no pun intended, plain. Jane Broxter is herself all the time, no mask, no coverage, and I adore that about her. You can see for yourself at https://cybillewisseries.blogspot.com/p/character-bio-jane.html.

What will you be working on in 2020? Any new releases or dates that fans should be looking forward to hearing about?

I will be releasing the next Cybil Lewis novel, book 4, called SCORNED: A CYBIL LEWIS SF MYSTERY NOVEL (August 2020). It will pit Cybil against an enemy she doesn’t know and one that is as faceless as the online life that spawned it. I will also continue to pitch my urban fantasy novel as well as work on editing a collection of black vampire stories, titled SLAY: STORIES OF THE VAMPIRE NOIRE (October 2020). I will continue to write for my patrons over at my Patreon site as well as serve as a guest at various SF conventions.

If you could bring any object or device into the real world from fiction or film, and it would work perfectly, what would you choose? Why would you choose that item?

I would bring Hermoine’s Time Turner from Harry Potter because I need more hours in the day to do stuff!

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Joshua Bilmes

SJoshua Bilmes founded JABberwocky Literary Agency in 1994, and the first stepping stone on that path was the 1979 Boskone, making this 40th anniversary year a very special one. His clients include top bestselling authors like Brandon Sanderson, Charlaine Harris, Jack Campbell and Peter V. Brett, and many other award-winning and long-running authors including Elizabeth Moon, Simon R. Green, Tanya Huff and Myke Cole. We’re just weeks away from the publication of FINDER, the debut novel from Hugo Award winning author and Massachusets’ own Suzanne Palmer, and Dan Moren, Greg Katsoulis and Auston Habershaw are other Boston area authors. Joshua first met Nick Martell at Boskone 56, and less than a year later had a personal best debut author sale for Nick’s first novel. Comics, movies and tennis are the things Joshua does when he isn’t doing the work thing.

Visit Joshua on their Twitter, or website.

What topics are you most looking forward to talking about at Boskone?

Three years ago, I met a young author named Nick Martell at Boskone, which led to my repping him and then selling his first novel.That book, THE KINGDOM OF LIARS, will be coming from Saga Press in May 2020, so this is the first Boskone since when I’ll be able to show off an actual advance reader copy of the book, and the cover.And as of the day of this writing I’m about to go out to market with another author whom I met at a Boskone Kaffeklatsch a couple years ago, and I have fingers crossed I’ll be able to sell that manuscript between now and February.

Bonus: Up for a challenge? Give us a haiku or limerick about Boskone!

The windswept passage
Across to the waterfront
Now developing

If you could be a fly on the wall during any scene or event in literature of film, which scene would it be and why?

Back before special effects were as fancy and full of CGI as they are today — I believe I read that when Luke and Vader are fighting at the end of The Empire Strikes Back, there are people outside of the frame throwing things at them, the detritus etc. that Vader is supposed to be using his mastery of the force to overwhelm Luke.Wouldn’t it have been great to be one of the people throwing stuff, or even watching them throw stuff?

What was your first book event or literary convention? Tell us about it! Perhaps you even have a photo to share?

Depending on one’s definition of “first” and “book,” there are a surprising # of possibilities I could talk about for this, but I’m going to go back to a comic book convention I attended at a hotel off of Times Square back when I was in high school.It wasn’t that big, pint-sized or smaller by today’s standards but they had some Syd Mead art from Blade Runner on display which was totally cool. And they also had a small focus group panel led by someone at DC Comics. I remember quite clearly that one thing that came up as a negative was the whole “skip week” thing. I might have been a high school student, but it was pretty clear to me that it made no sense to have weeks that a company would just decide to entirely take off. Sometime thereafter (we’re talking years, but sometime thereafter), DC did away with skip weeks. Currently, those are the weeks that are filled with Annuals and other assorted one shots.I have no idea the entire process that led to that happening, but I’d like to believe that the focus group at this little comics convention in the early 1980s might have lit a spark someplace.

If you could bring any object or device into the real world from fiction or film, and it would work perfectly, what would you choose? Why would you choose that item?

A tribble, of course.A very troublesome tribble, straight from Star Trek.

*

Mur Lafferty

Mur Lafferty is a Hugo and Nebula nominated writer, most recently of Six Wakes and Solo: A Star Wars Story. She’s also known for being a Hugo winning and Hall of Fame podcaster and co-host and producer of Ditch Diggers and I Should Be Writing. She’s the co-editor of the science fiction podcast Escape Pod, nominee for the Best Semiprozine Hugo Award in 2018.

Visit Mur on their Twitter or website.

What is it about Boskone that makes this the convention you choose to attend each year? Or if this is your first Boskone, what attracted you most to Boskone this year?

It’s a well-organized and professionally run convention that a lot of people I like and admire attend.

If you could be a fly on the wall during any scene or event in literature of film, which scene would it be and why?

Pretty much any scene in The Lighthouse because I have no idea how much of that movie occurred in one character’s head and how much was real.

Looking back, what was the first piece of work (whether it be from literature, cinema, art, music, video game, toy, or whatever it may be) that first made you love science-fiction and fantasy?

A Wrinkle in Time, Madeline L’Engle. Giving girls the lead role in an SF adventure was new to me, and the story blew my mind.

Register for Boskone 57!
Register for Boskone 57 today!

About DJ (@MyLifeMyBooksMyEscape)

DJ is a year 3 medical student in his clinical rotations, who in his spare time, loves to interview authors about all the books that he has no time to read :)
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