B56 Mini Interview with William Hayashi, Sarah Smith & Jeffrey A. Carver

Welcome back to our Boskone 56 Mini Interview series! Happy Monday! And to those of you who are from New Englands, I want to extend an EXTRA Happy Monday to all of you 😉 Let’s start this week of with some interviews with William Hayashi, Sarah Smith and Jeffrey A. Carver!

William Hayashi

William Hayashi is an author, award-winning screenwriter, film producer, and host of the Genesis Science Fiction Radio Show. He has published a number of novels and short stories, and his first four movie scripts were made into films. His seminal work was The Darkside Trilogy, telling the story of what happens in the U.S. when African Americans are discovered secretly living on the backside of the moon since before Neil Armstrong arrived. His followup to Darkside is The Archangel-X Trilogy which continues the story of Darkside several years later.

Visit William on his Facebook, Twitter, and Website!

With many conventions to choose from and limited time in your schedule, what attracts you to Boskone?

The first feature of this convention that resonates especially with me is the comprehensive program that the committee manages to put together year after year.

If you could relive your first experience with any book or film, which one would you pick? What is it about this book or film that you want to experience again for the “first time?”

Thinking back so many years and thousands of books ago I think it was reading Frank Herbert’s Dune for the first time. The scope of the store, the futuristic aspects, the complexity of the plot, and the incorporation of political intrigue was something I had not found in any other book, let alone a series, before.

What is your favorite memory of a fan interaction at a convention? It could be you as a pro interacting with one of your fans or you as a fan meeting someone you admire.

I was in conversation with several people at Boskone 54 and heard someone call out my name behind me. It was a woman I did not know who wanted to compliment me on the moderation I did at Boskone and WorldCon for the AfroFuturism panels at both conventions. She stated that whatever panels I was on, she was going to be sure to attend.

Can you share some details about upcoming projects or what you’re working on now? Do you have releases in 2019 that readers should look for?

I am in the last stages of completing a second series, The Archangel-X Trilogy, consisting of volumes Quarantine, Enmity, and Enlightenment, to be released all at once in the first or second quarter of 2019. I also have a Young Adult novel that will follow, hopefully, by the Labor Day holiday. In July, two literary organizations in Portland, Oregon are putting together a weekend’s worth of programs with me as the headliner. I will be discussing my work, world building, character construction, and several aspects of crafting compelling stories.

Sarah Smith

Sarah Smith writes things, including an Edwardian mystery series. She’s working on a fantasy set in an alternate 19C Brazil. For fun she fixes Victorian things, IRL she works in online education. For fun, virtual chocolate, and short stories, visit http://www.sarahsmith.com, FB and Twitter sarahwriter

Visit Sarah on her Facebook, Twitter, Website, Pinterest, and Instagram!

In 10 words or less, how would you recommend Boskone to a friend or fan?

SF in the snow–pros, programming, fine art, friends.

If you could relive your first experience with any book or film, which one would you pick? What is it about this book or film that you want to experience again for the “first time?”

The very first book I consciously fell in love with was T.H. White’s MISTRESS MASHAM’S REPOSE. I was at my aunt’s, the only child at a party, and found it on her bookshelves. I fell entirely into the book–that strange, postwar-Victorian world of Malplaquet; Maria, doughty heroine in her boots and glasses; the villainous Vicar and Mrs. Brown; the Professor; Mrs. Nokes, riding her bicycle down the halls of the gigantic house; the dog, Captain; and, of course, the Lilliputians. All of them beautifully brought to life, with grownup jokes and adventure and perfect illustrations by Fritz Eichenberg.

I wouldn’t go home until she let me borrow it. (She gave it to me, wise woman. I still have it.)

So the book I’m always looking for is the one that’s better written than it needs to be; where the characters are in trouble, yearning for something better, something just and fair and kind; a book set in a strange world that feels like home. Usually that book is fantasy or historical fiction. It’s not always a kind world but it’s unique, and the characters are passionate people fighting for high stakes. Jo Walton’s FARTHING, THE HUNGER GAMES, Harry Potter, Ysabeau Wilce’s FLORA SEGUNDA, any Miles Vorkosigan book–I think the first one I read was was “The Mountains of Mourning”–Brian Selznick’s THE ADVENTURES OF HUGO CABRET (and the movie too), Malka Older’s Centenal books, Barbara Hambly’s DRAGONSBANE and the Benjamin January books, anything by Angela Carter. Mikhail Bulgakov’s THE MASTER AND MARGARITA….So many books to love. Most recently Robin Sloan’s MR PENUMBRA’S 24-HOUR BOOKSTORE.

They say you can find hints of creators in their work. Looking back at your work, which character, piece of art, song, poem, article, etc. most closely resembles you? Why?

(Insert standard “They’re all me” here.) Like Alexander von Reisden, I had a very difficult relationship with my family of origin. Like Perdita Halley, I have/had a disability: she’s legally blind, I had a severe speech defect. Like Joe Roper, I was a graduate student on a working-class budget. But the one that most closely resembles me? Law Walker in THE OTHER SIDE OF DARK. Not because I’m a rich mixed-race teenager, or because his father is a bully (though I’ve been there). He and I are both huge fans of old architecture.

There’s a moment when Law looks into the chimney closet of an eighteenth-century house and realizes that the other wall of the closet is the fireplace of another room; the whole house turns inside out for him, he understands how it works, the house in its garden; he stands at the center of it and his understanding radiates out, and he knows he’s never going to be bored again. Me. I did that first.

It’s not as though characters *are* you; rather, something in their experience is like something in your experience, and it starts up a whole conversation between you and them about how they feel and how it affects them because of who they are.

Do you have a favorite photo from a book event or literary convention? If so, when and where was it taken? What do you enjoy most about this photo?

Books are never done till readers read them. I love to hear from readers and talk with them. This was taken at Malice Domestic in 2010. I was talking with a reader/fan about a book of mine, which was up for an award. It got it, and she was even happier than I was!

Can you share some details about upcoming projects or what you’re working on now? Do you have releases in 2019 that readers should look for?

Three big projects: The Titanic book has a title, CRIMES AND SURVIVORS. My agent and I are working on various schemes for publishing it and republishing the 3 other Reisden-Perdita novels. There are some interesting nibbles, but if nothing comes of them, we’ll do Kindle Direct.

I’m working on a big fat fantasy, working title ICARU, set in a fantasticated Brazil.

Finally, a group of the Future Boston writers and others are collaborating on a shared-universe project, which may lead to more Future Boston.stories. Meanwhile FUTURE BOSTON, SLOW LIGHTNING, and IN THE CUBE are going to be republished, together with a new novel, Jon Burrowes’ VUBRE THE GREAT.

Who is your favorite literary character of all time? What is it about this character that you admire?

No points for originality here: Terry Pratchett’s Death, especially in HOGFATHER. But usually my favorite literary characters are the ones in the book(s) I’m working on.

Jeffrey A. Carver

Jeffrey A. Carver was a Nebula Award finalist for his novel Eternity’s End. He also authored Battlestar Galactica, a novelization of the critically acclaimed television miniseries. His novels combine thought-provoking characters with engaging storytelling, and range from the adventures of the Star Rigger universe (Star Rigger’s Way, Dragons in the Stars, and others) to the ongoing, character-driven hard SF of The Chaos Chronicles—which begins with Neptune Crossing and continues with Strange Attractors, The Infinite Sea, Sunborn, and the forthcoming The Reefs of Time. A native of Huron, Ohio, Carver lives with his family in the Boston area. He has taught writing in a variety of settings, from educational television to conferences for young writers to MIT, as well as his Ultimate Science Fiction Workshop with Craig Shaw Gardner. He has created a free web site for aspiring authors of all ages at writesf.com. Learn more about the author and his work at starrigger.net.

Visit Jeffrey on his Facebook, Website, and Blog!

With many conventions to choose from and limited time in your schedule, what attracts you to Boskone?

It’s in my home town! Plus it’s very welcoming, and I always enjoy it.

If you could relive your first experience with any book or film, which one would you pick? What is it about this book or film that you want to experience again for the “first time?”

Milton Lesser’s Stadium Beyond the Stars. I read this book at least a dozen times when I was a kid. I loved the unabashed sense of wonder at the exploration of the galaxy, first contact with cool aliens (the Rollers), and the coming together of worlds in the galactic Olympics. I loved that the hero, Steve, put humanity’s first interaction with another race above his own ambitions as an Olympics athlete. (His field was spacesuit racing.) Truth is, I loved all the Winston Juveniles with the rocket on the spine that I encountered at that age. I recently discovered that many of them are available at very low cost as ebooks, and I’ve dipped back into them. “Stadium” isn’t nearly as exciting as I remember it, so I see now how much of *me* and my own aspirations were wrapped up in my reading of it, and books like it.

They say you can find hints of creators in their work. Looking back at your work, which character, piece of art, song, poem, article, etc. most closely resembles you? Why?

Depends on my stage of life. I have been told that Gev Carlyle of Star Rigger’s Way seems like me. The whole notion of a star rigger (pilot) crafting fantastic landscapes in the net to enable navigation through the tricksy currents of the interstellar Flux seems a lot like a young writer crafting visions of wondrous worlds and navigating stories through them. Or so I was told; I didn’t think of it that way at all as I was writing it. But yeah.

On the other hand, at a slightly later date, I channeled a good deal of Panglor Balef, who was more than a little crazy and pretty unhappy with his lot in life.

On the other other hand, Ed the virtual cyberparrot in the dragon books really bounced off the virtual walls in a way that some part of me wanted to.

Shall I go on? Can you share some details about upcoming projects or what you’re working on now? Do you have releases in 2019 that readers should look for?

I have FINALLY, after more than ten years, completed the next volume(s) of The Chaos Chronicles, entitled The Reefs of Time! It’s getting its finishing touches put on right now. Nothing definite about a publication date, but I’ll let the world know as soon as I know.

Who is your favorite literary character of all time? What is it about this character that you admire?

Gandalf, hands down. Do I really need to say more?


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B56 Mini Interview with Ellen Datlow, Mike Olshan & Max Gladstone

Welcome back to the Boskone 56 Mini Interview series! It officially the first day of February and we are now 2 weeks away from Boskone! To help celebrate this, today we are chatting with Ellen Datlow, Mike Olshan & Max Gladstone!

Ellen Datlow

Ellen Datlow has been editing science fiction, fantasy, and horror short fiction for over thirty-five years as fiction editor of OMNI Magazine and editor of Event Horizon and SCIFICTION. She currently acquires short fiction for Tor.com. In addition, she has edited more than ninety science fiction, fantasy, and horror anthologies, including the annual The Best Horror of the Year, The Doll Collection, Black Feathers, Mad Hatters and March Hares, The Devil and the Deep: Horror Stories of the Sea, and The Best of the Best Horror of the Year. Forthcoming is Echoes: The Saga Anthology of Ghost Stories. She’s won multiple World Fantasy Awards, Locus Awards, Hugo Awards, Stoker Awards, International Horror Guild Awards, Shirley Jackson Awards, and the 2012 Il Posto Nero Black Spot Award for Excellence as Best Foreign Editor. Datlow was named recipient of the 2007 Karl Edward Wagner Award, given at the British Fantasy Convention for “outstanding contribution to the genre,” and has been honored with the Life Achievement Award by the Horror Writers Association and by the World Fantasy Convention. She lives in New York and co-hosts the monthly Fantastic Fiction Reading Series at KGB Bar. More information can be found at http://www.datlow.com, on Facebook, and on twitter as @EllenDatlow.

Visit Ellen on her Facebook, Twitter, and Website!

With many conventions to choose from and limited time in your schedule, what attracts you to Boskone?

Honestly this is the first time I’ve been back to Boskone in more than 20 years. I used to attend regularly when I was working for OMNI Magazine (and had an expense account), but I stopped going once we folded. The reason I came back this year is because my friends Liz Hand and Gardner Dozois were GOH. I’m so sorry Gardner isn’t here so I can hang out with him one more time. I also figured it would be a great time to see what’s been going on since I last attended.

If you could relive your first experience with any book or film, which one would you pick? What is it about this book or film that you want to experience again for the “first time?”

Bladerunner. It was gorgeous, it seemed to channel William Gibson’s sprawl (I published most of Bill’s short stories/novelettes in OMNI), and was elegiac, sexy, weird, romantic. I’ve rewatched it many times and am never disappointed.

Do you have a favorite photo from a book event or literary convention? If so, when and where was it taken? What do you enjoy most about this photo?

I have some great photos from events I did with some of the contributors for MAD HATTERS AND MARCH HARES, my Alice in Wonderland anthology. The photos are whimsical and true to the book.

Can you share some details about upcoming projects or what you’re working on now? Do you have releases in 2019 that readers should look for?

Echoes: The Saga Anthology of Ghost Stories is a huge ghost story anthology (3 reprints) that will be out August 2019.
The Best Horror of the Year: Eleventh Annual Collection will be out around June 2019.
I’m working on a very special project for Subterranean Press that hasn’t yet been announced and won’t be out till 2020.
Have two novellas I’ve acquired and edited for Tor.com that will be published in 2019.
About nine stories I’ve acquired for Tor.com website coming out in 2019.

Mike Olshan

Mike Olshan is a New York-based journalist, editor and photographer who has been archiving 16mm film for over 40 years. He was formerly editor of the film/TV production journal Millimeter and of Videoplay Magazine. He’s best known as the screening producer and film show host Movie Mike. Mike has produced and hosted screenings outdoors in community gardens and in museums, film workshops, galleries, community centers, pub backrooms, steampunk events and SF conventions. His work includes screening and lecturing at the Anthology Film Archives, Millennium Film Workshop and the Robert Beck Memorial Cinema. A film photographer who favors the use of high-end vintage equipment, Mike’s a Board member at the Brooklyn Waterfront Artists’ Coalition. He’s a frequent contributor of photos, copy and research for the forgotten-ny.com website.

Visit Mike on his Website!

With many conventions to choose from and limited time in your schedule, what attracts you to Boskone?

It is a major event in my area.

In 10 words or less, how would you recommend Boskone to a friend or fan?

A lively large convention with lots of interesting programs.

If you could relive your first experience with any book or film, which one would you pick? What is it about this book or film that you want to experience again for the “first time?”

Three Strangers, which is a well-written and well-acted story built entirely on character development in which the three principals are shown though their actions to be entirely different than you might think when they are firs introduced.

They say you can find hints of creators in their work. Looking back at your work, which character, piece of art, song, poem, article, etc. most closely resembles you? Why?

My unpublished underground comic book script Tales of Lost Atlantis which distills the essence of my hippie idealism in the period when I wrote it.

What is your favorite memory of a fan interaction at a convention? It could be you as a pro interacting with one of your fans or you as a fan meeting someone you admire.

I went down to the dealers room and behind one table I met the woman I lived with for the next eight years.

Do you have a favorite photo from a book event or literary convention? If so, when and where was it taken? What do you enjoy most about this photo?

No, but I have a few favorite works of art I bought at convention art rooms.

Can you share some details about upcoming projects or what you’re working on now? Do you have releases in 2019 that readers should look for?

I am preparing for a contrast corrected theatrical quality 4K video master of the 16mm film print I cut together and showed at Boskone a few years ago retelling in complete continuous detail the 1940 Flash Gordon serial, which version I have titled Mission to Mongo.

Who is your favorite literary character of all time? What is it about this character that you admire?

Hard to say but I do like Kurt Russell’s action hero who is fearless because he really does not care if he lives or dies in the remake of The Thing. He is completely nihilistic, dead inside. I am not saying I would want to be like that myself, just that he is a great character. He appears again as virtually the same character in Escape from New York.

Max Gladstone

Max Gladstone is the author of the Hugo-nominated Craft Sequence, of which the most recent novel, RUIN OF ANGELS, was released in September 2017. Max’s interactive mobile game, CHOICE OF THE DEATHLESS, was nominated for the XYZZY Award, and his critically acclaimed short fiction has appeared on Tor.com and in Uncanny Magazine, and in anthologies such as _XO Orpheus: Fifty New Myths_ and _The Starlit Wood: New Fairy Tales_. In addition to his solo and creator-owned work, Max is the lead writer on the BOOKBURNERS serial, a contributing writer on THE WITCH WHO CAME IN FROM THE COLD, and contributed a comic for the Kodansha Press anthology GHOST IN THE SHELL: GLOBAL NEURAL NETWORK. Max has sung in Carnegie Hall and was once thrown from a horse in Mongolia.

Visit Max on his Facebook, Twitter, and Website!

With many conventions to choose from and limited time in your schedule, what attracts you to Boskone?

I love Boskone’s literary focus, its consistently high level of programming, and the space it allows for neat things to happen.

If you could relive your first experience with any book or film, which one would you pick? What is it about this book or film that you want to experience again for the “first time?”

Most of the artwork I love opens over time with rereads and rewatching, but I’d love to be able to go back and read Dorothy Dunnett’s Game of Kings for the first time again. Part of the joy of that first read-through is coming to understand what Dunnett is doing with Lymond, how she’s hiding her tricks, and what all the chaos is aiming toward. Once you understand the whole picture you never experience that same sense of the book “clicking” into place again.

Do you have a favorite photo from a book event or literary convention? If so, when and where was it taken? What do you enjoy most about this photo?

Amal El-Mohtar and I took what would become the author photo for our upcoming novella THIS IS HOW YOU LOSE THE TIME WAR at World Fantasy, after a choreographed duel we’d filmed to promote a project. John Clute walked past in the background as we were swinging swords at one another; I have no idea what, if anything, he thought about walking past a swordfight in early autumn outside the con hotel.

Can you share some details about upcoming projects or what you’re working on now? Do you have releases in 2019 that readers should look for?

My novel EMPRESS OF FOREVER comes out on June 18 of this year?a space romp, starring a woman from our Earth thrown into the center of a galactic conflict in the far future. Vivian Liao’s just trying to get home, but she may have to save the galaxy to do that.

Amal El-Mohtar and I have cowritten a novella, THIS IS HOW YOU LOSE THE TIME WAR, due out in July. In TIME WAR, two enemy agents in a war between two different possible futures start trading mocking letters. But as their correspondence deepens, they find they have more in common with one another than with the futures they’re theoretically trying to bring about…

They’re very different, very grand pieces of work, and I’m so excited to share them with people this summer.


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B56 Mini Interview with E. C. Ambrose, Clea Simon, Steven Popkes & Alan F. Beck

Welcome back to the Boskone 56 Mini Interviews! Today you are in for a special treat, because we talking with four authors! E. C. Ambrose, Clea Simon, Steven Popkes, and Alan F. Beck, are all here to talk more about themselves, books, and Boskone!

E. C. Ambrose

E. C. Ambrose wrote “The Dark Apostle” series of dark historical fantasy novels about medieval surgery. The Dark Apostle started with Elisha Barber (DAW, 2013), described in a starred Library Journal review as, “beautifully told, painfully elegant”, and continues with Elisha Magus, Elisha Rex, and Elisha Mancer, concluding with Elisha Daemon, in 2018. As Elaine Isaak, she is the author of The Singer’s Crown (Eos, 2005), and its sequels, as well as the “Tales of Bladesend” epic novella series. Her short fiction has won the Tenebris Press Flash Fiction contest and appeared in Fireside magazine and Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader. Editorial credits include Love Free or Die, and two additional volumes of the New Hampshire Pulp Fiction series.In the process of researching her books, Elaine learned how to hunt with a falcon, clear a building of possible assailants, and pull traction on a broken limb. The author is a graduate of and an instructor for the Odyssey Writing workshop. In addition to writing, Elaine works as a guide, teaching rock climbing and leading outdoor adventure camps.

Visit E.C. on her Facebook, Twitter, and Website!

In 10 words or less, how would you recommend Boskone to a friend or fan?

Greatest concentration of avid readers in New England

What is your favorite memory of a fan interaction at a convention? It could be you as a pro interacting with one of your fans or you as a fan meeting someone you admire.

When I attended the Science Fiction Hall of Fame Induction in Seattle several years ago, I got the chance to introduce myself to Anne McCaffrey, and tell her that one of my first ever short stories was Dragonriders of Pern fanfic. She took in my name tag, turned to her assistant and said, “I believe I have Elaine’s book on the shelf to read, don’t I?”

Do you have a favorite photo from a book event or literary convention? If so, when and where was it taken? What do you enjoy most about this photo?

For my first published novel, I had the chance to do a signing in the town where I grew up. One of the people named in the acknowledgements of the book was my first grade teacher, Mrs. Krackhardt, because she let me stay inside to read during recess. I had mistakenly thought she was dead–but she attended my reading, and I got to thank her personally and have a photo taken with her.

Who is your favorite literary character of all time? What is it about this character that you admire?

Schmendrick, the Magician, from Peter S. Beagle’s The Last Unicorn. Schmendrick struggles to produce any magic at all. He struggles with just about everything, really. He is awkward and incompetent–and trying very, very hard to do the right thing and live by his ideals, no matter what.

Clea Simon

The author of more than two dozen mysteries featuring cats, three nonfiction books, and one punk rock urban noir, World Enough (Severn House), Clea Simon likes to keep busy. The Boston Globe best-selling author’s most recent mysteries range from the dystopian black-cat narrated Cross My Path (Severn House) (the third Blackie & Care mystery) and the snarky pet noir Fear on Four Paws (Poisoned Pen) (Pru Marlowe #7) to the cozy A Spell of Murder, the first Witch Cats of Cambridge mystery, which Polis Books will publish in December. Clea lives in Somerville, Massachusetts, with her husband and one (1) cat. She can be reached at http://www.cleasimon.com

Visit Clea on her Facebook, Twitter, and Website!

With many conventions to choose from and limited time in your schedule, what attracts you to Boskone?

I want to further expand my universe! I’ve long been involved in the crime fiction/mystery community, but increasingly my books have involved (or evolved to include) paranormal and dystopian elements. As my world(s) expand, I’m looking for others who see the paranormal as perfectly, well, normal as well.

If you could relive your first experience with any book or film, which one would you pick? What is it about this book or film that you want to experience again for the “first time?”

I wish I could pass through the wardrobe to the lamp post and meet Mr. Tumnus the faun for the first time. I’ve gone on to love other books besides “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe” ? in fact, “The Magician’s Nephew”* remains my favorite of the The Chronicles of Narnia. But that first magical journey so perfectly captures what books can do. They are these hidden portals to new worlds. Always have been.
*This may explain why, as a child, I invented an elaborate religion around the worship of trees. I guess C.S. Lewis would think my little pagan heart had missed the point.

What is your favorite memory of a fan interaction at a convention? It could be you as a pro interacting with one of your fans or you as a fan meeting someone you admire.

I got to meet the late great Sue Grafton at a crime fiction convention about eight years ago. I’m such a fan, I was stammering as I approached her, but she was so unfailingly gracious, even asking me if I was a writer. When I told her that, yes, I was, and that in fact I was working on a book then, she leaned forward and said, softly, in my ear, “It’s hard. Isn’t it?”

Can you share some details about upcoming projects or what you’re working on now? Do you have releases in 2019 that readers should look for?

Having just celebrated the release of my first “witch cats of Cambridge” book, A Spell of Murder, I am deep in the writing of the second book. So far, we have two suspects accusing each other, one murder, and ? again ? three magical cats trying to keep their person out of trouble. It may be called “An Incantation of Cats,” and if all goes well, it will come out in December 2019.

Who is your favorite literary character of all time? What is it about this character that you admire?

Frodo, from J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Lord of the Rings,” because he is so tragic and true. Or possibly Edward Gorey’s “The Wuggly Ump” (from the book of the same name), because he is so single-minded (and reminds me of my cat, as well).

Steven Popkes

Steven Popkes is mainly known for his short fiction and novellas. That said, there are three novels out there for people to read: Caliban Landing, Slow Lightning and Welcome to Witchlandia. He has been collected several times in various “Best of…” anthologies. He lives in Massachusetts with his wife. Together they have a dog, a cat, forty turtles and twenty three chickens. The turkeys just visit. His son just visits.

Visit Steve on his Website!

With many conventions to choose from and limited time in your schedule, what attracts you to Boskone?

Boskone is a convention that investigates the science fiction of the written word. Other media are also looked at but it’s primarily the written narrative.

If you could relive your first experience with any book or film, which one would you pick? What is it about this book or film that you want to experience again for the “first time?”

Book: Norstrilia. Film: 2001.

What is your favorite memory of a fan interaction at a convention? It could be you as a pro interacting with one of your fans or you as a fan meeting someone you admire.

I once overheard a fan talking about my work to another fan. He said I had to be gay because I treated gays so well in my work. I liked that.

Can you share some details about upcoming projects or what you’re working on now? Do you have releases in 2019 that readers should look for?

I have just finished a novel involving the long term effects of child abuse and the terraforming of Venus.

Who is your favorite literary character of all time? What is it about this character that you admire?

Huckleberry Finn. Because at all times he tries to do things his own way and stumbles onto the right thing to do from his own point of view, in spite of those around him. (The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain)

Alan F. Beck

Alan F. Beck has been an artist, designer and illustrator for over 30 years doing work for many major corporations including book covers and magazine illustrations. His work has been exhibited in art shows and Science Fiction/Fantasy conventions all across the country. He has won numerous awards and honors including two Chesley award nominations, a HUGO finalist award nomination, and received a “Body of Work” Award at LA Con IV WorldCon Art Show, Anaheim, CA. Alan’s work tends to be realistic and surrealistic in nature, often whimsical and humorous. His paintings and prints can be found in collections in the US, Canada and Europe. He has recently published a children’s book “The Adventures of Nogard and Jackpot” and is creator of the “Mouseopolitan Museum of Art”. His artwork and concepts are produced using acrylics, watercolor, pastels, 3-D modeling and image manipulation programs. His art can be found in Space and Time magazine, The Fantasy Art Bible, assorted e-zines and various book covers. visit http://www.alanfbeck.com

Visit Alan on his Facebook and Website!

With many conventions to choose from and limited time in your schedule, what attracts you to Boskone?

I?m based out of Brooklyn, NY so Boskone is easily accessible for me. Boskone is a well run convention by great people. In my opinion, it has one of the greatest art shows on the east coast and the panels are filled with knowledgeable experts and the subjects are not only interesting but entertaining as well.

If you could relive your first experience with any book or film, which one would you pick? What is it about this book or film that you want to experience again for the “first time?”

One of my favorite films is Walt Disney?s 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. I know it?s an old one and I saw it when it first came out. The scene in the beginning where the partially submerged sub was zooming across the sea toward the ship just blew my teenage mind away. I loved the under water scenes and the design of the nautilus that fit the time of the story. I could have done without Kirt Douglas singing to the seal but the anti war message resonated with me as well.

What is your favorite memory of a fan interaction at a convention? It could be you as a pro interacting with one of your fans or you as a fan meeting someone you admire.

One of my fondest memories that happened was when I was standing my my panel in the art show when a woman approached with her little girl hiding behind her leg. She told her daughter that I was the man the made her favorite Nogard & Jackpot picture. I stooped down and the shy girl came out told me what her favorite picture was. Then she went on to tell me all the other ones she had and said the Adventures of Nogard and Jackpot was her best book ever. This conversation went on for another 5 minutes. Meetings like this and talking to fans is one of the best joys of life.


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B56 Mini Interviews with Grady Hendrix, Reiko Murakami & Alan L. Brown

Welcome to a new week, Boskone fans! As we count down the days to Boskone, check out these amazing mini interviews with Grady Hendrix, Reiko Murakami & Alan L. Brown.

 

Grady Hendrix

Grady Hendrix

Grady Hendrix is the award-winning author of the novels Horrorstor,  My Best Friend’s Exorcism, and We Sold Our Souls. He’s also the author of Paperbacks from Hell, a history of the horror paperback boom of the 70’s and 80’s, as well as the screenwrite

r of Mohawk and Satanic Panic.

Visit Grady on Facebook, Twitter or via his website.

With many conventions to choose from and limited time in your schedule, what attracts you to Boskone?

Boskone is close to NYC and I’m lazy, so that’s part of the appeal, but I also love how grassroots it is. It’s a nice way to stay in touch and get drunk with people I know in the area who I don’t have an excuse to see otherwise.

If you could relive your first experience with any book or film, which one would you pick? What is it about this book or film that you want to experience again for the “first time?”

Darby O’Gillis and the Little People was a movie that terrified me as a child when it was screened at Peter Mansfield’s birthday party. I hid from the TV screen in a full-blown, free-falling attack of gibbering fear. I’d love to feel that scared again.

They say you can find hints of creators in their work. Looking back at your work, which character, piece of art, song, poem, article, etc. most closely resembles you? Why?

I feel a lot like the Swamp Thing: slow, stupid, and generally confused by the people around me. Also, I smell bad and live in a puddle of muck.

 

Reiko MurakamiReiko Murakami

Reiko Murakami, also known as Raqmo, is an award-winning U.S. based concept artist and illustrator specialized in surreal fantasy and horror characters. Her work has been published in Spectrum, Infected by Art, ArtOrder Invitational: The Journal, Exposé, 2D Artist and many others.

Visit Reiko on Facebook, Twitter or via her website.

With many conventions to choose from and limited time in your schedule, what attracts you to Boskone?

I learned about Boskone from some of my artist friends who attend. I love that I get to see them there every year. The fact that it’s in Boston is great too.

They say you can find hints of creators in their work. Looking back at your work, which character, piece of art, song, poem, article, etc. most closely resembles you? Why?

I use myself as a model for hands quite a lot. Especially for my personal work you can probably recognize me in their hand gestures.

What is your favorite memory of a fan interaction at a convention? It could be you as a pro interacting with one of your fans or you as a fan meeting someone you admire.

One time at a con I was talking to a person about my work. I was explaining the background story of the piece, which was based on very personal and emotional event, and after I was done talking the person started to share their personal event. We didn’t go too much of the details of our experiences, but it wasn’t needed. At the end of the day we felt we were connected, all because of what I painted. That was the best experience I’ve ever had, because sharing our feelings and connecting is my purpose in making art.

Can you share some details about upcoming projects or what you’re working on now? Do you have releases in 2019 that readers should look for?

I am working on a publication, but I cannot disclose any information yet. All I can say is it’s very exciting, I’m creating a ton of images for it, and it is the biggest projects I’ve ever done 🙂

 

Alan L. BrownAlan L. Brown

Alan Brown contributes bi-weekly reviews of classic SF books to TOR.com in the Front Lines and Frontiers column, reviews the Marvel Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. TV show for the website, and occasionally contributes articles on other topics. He is also an SF author, albeit not a prolific one, having contributed to Tor’s There Will Be War series, Baen’s War World series, and John F. Carr’s small press relaunch of that same War World series. He has a story coming soon in Charles E. Gannon’s Lost Signals of the Terran Republic, shared-world anthology. He retired from the US Coast Guard Reserve as a Captain, and retired from a civil service career that included supporting the US Navy as an Emergency Manager. He is a lifelong fan of science fiction, having started on the juvenile novels of the ’20s and ’30s that his father tucked away in the basement: Tom Swift, the Great Marvel series, Don Sturdy and the works of Edgar Rice Burroughs. He started reading comics as Marvel exploded on the scene in the mid-1960s, and soon graduated to grown-up stories in Analog and Galaxy magazines, and SF and fantasy novels of all varieties.

 

With many conventions to choose from and limited time in your schedule, what attracts you to Boskone?

Boskone was one of my father’s favorite cons, and became one of mine as well. It involves a nice mix of literary and media topics. In its current incarnation, it is small enough to feel cozy, and big enough to have a lot of options.

 

If you could relive your first experience with any book or film, which one would you pick? What is it about this book or film that you want to experience again for the “first time?”

The movie Star Wars is the first thing that comes to mind. It was like nothing I had seen before. As if Hollywood had looked into my head, and put together just the right mix of pulpy space opera goodness to make me happy.

What is your favorite memory of a fan interaction at a convention? It could be you as a pro interacting with one of your fans or you as a fan meeting someone you admire.

I’ll never forget my first interaction with an author, I was at my first con with my dad, and he called to another old timer across the huckster room. When he turned around, I saw those big muttonchop sideburns, and realized it was Isaac Asimov. I’m glad they had things to talk about, because my tongue was tied in knots. It turns out my dad had been a customer at the candy shop in NY where Isaac had worked when he was young, and had encountered him a number of times over the years.

Can you share some details about upcoming projects or what you’re working on now? Do you have releases in 2019 that readers should look for?

I am a regular contributor to Tor.com and I have a story coming out soon in the Lost Signals anthology, edited by Chuck Gannon.

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Flash Fiction Slam! Who Will Win the Title?

The Flash Fiction Slam is back! The Boskone Flash Fiction Slam has become a Boskone staple and you don’t want to miss out! Be one of the 11 writers to dazzle the judges and the audience with an original story that can be read in under 3 minutes.

Sign up in advance for one of eight (8) reading slots on a first-come, first-served basis by emailing program@boskone.org. Please put “Flash Fiction Slam” in your email’s subject line. Once the 8 pre-convention slots are full, you can come to Program Ops in the Harbor Level Foyer to sign up in person for one of the remaining three (3) slots. A waiting list will also be available.

Judges

  • James Patrick Kelly
  • Andrea Corbin
  • John Chu
  • Rob Greene, Moderator

Date: Saturday, February 16, 2019
Time: 5:00 PM
Location: Marina 2

Flash Fiction Slam
Boskone’s Flash Fiction Slam returns! Be one of eleven (11) writers to compete for the title of The Flash, reading your own original fiction — which must tell a complete tale within a 3-minute period. Our expert panel of judges will score your work, and you automatically lose 10 percent for going over your 3-minute time. You may only read your own work. The reader with the top score wins! Sign up before the con by sending an email to program@boskone.org for one of eight (8) reading slots on a first-come, first-served basis. Or sign up onsite at Program Ops in the Harbor Foyer for one of three (3) at-con openings. A waiting list will also be available there.

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Go Mobile and Get the Boskone Program App

With over 350 program items and nearly 200 program participants, there are a lot of things to keep track of at Boskone this year. But we have an app for that!

(Actually, we have your choice of two apps for that!)

With your smart phone, tablet, or computer, you can use the Grenadine Event Planner app or the KonOpas app to personalize your very own Boskone 56 schedule!

Online Schedules

The Boskone 56 schedule is online as a schedule that can be personalized as well as a text-only listing.

The Boskone Schedule Apps

Grenadine Event Guide is an (IOS or Android) application available on your phones and mobile devices. Grenadine is the database we use to set up the Boskone schedule. We have a schedule that can be personalized and can be connected with Grenadine’s mobile app. Once you have installed and launched the application, enter code “boskone56” to download the correct schedule.


Download on the AppStore
Get it on Google Play

Note: If you have set up a Grenadine account in the past for organizing your Boskone schedule, you can reuse that same account. Otherwise you may need to sign up as a new user.

KonOpas is a web based online schedule that you can view in any browser and can be personalized to export and share with others.  KonOpas will store all its data in the browser so you can still view it when you have no internet connectivity.

Access the KonOpas schedule at http://schedule.boskone.org

Tweet Your Experience

Use #boskone to share your thoughts on Twitter.

Boskone Internet Access

The hotel lobby offers free internet access so that you can keep up with any last minute schedule changes. So, please be sure to refresh your app before heading to the program area since the hotel does not make internet access available in those spaces.

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B56 Mini Interview with Auston Habershaw, Marshall Ryan Maresca & K.R. Branch

Happy Friday and welcome back to the Boskone 56 Mini Interview series! Have you bought your tickets to Boskone 56 yet? We are only 3 weeks away! Well, if you are still on fence about it, today we are talking to Auston Habershaw, Marshall Ryan Maresca, and K.R. Branch, who are more than happy to tell you exactly why they love Boskone and what they enjoy most about coming each year 🙂

Auston Habershaw

On the day Auston Habershaw was born, Skylab fell from the heavens. This foretold two possible fates: supervillain or scifi/fantasy author. Fortunately he chose the latter, and spends his time imagining the could-be and the never-was rather than disintegrating the moon with his volcano laser. He is a winner of the Writers of the Future Contest and has published short stories in F&SF, Analog, and Galaxy’s Edge among other places. His fantasy series, The Saga of the Redeemed, is published through Harper Voyager—the final installment of which, The Far Far Better Thing, will be released in March of 2019. He lives and works in Boston, MA, and you can find him online at aahabershaw.com

Visit Austin on his Facebook, Twitter, and Website!

With many conventions to choose from and limited time in your schedule, what attracts you to Boskone?

Well, in the first place, Boskone is a local convention for me (I live in Boston) and I think it’s important as an author to support local organizations that encourage and attract fans and authors like me. Even more important than that, though, is the simple fact that Boskone is a convention that consistently attracts top talent in an intimate setting. If you’re looking to meet your favorite author and talk with them without having to deal with the mob scene that is some of the larger conventions, then Boskone is an excellent choice.

If you could relive your first experience with any book or film, which one would you pick? What is it about this book or film that you want to experience again for the “first time?”

I’m going to go pretty old school here, but I’d love to encounter Stevenson’s TREASURE ISLAND for the first time again. That book is so rich in character, in setting, in dialogue–in *everything*–that it sucked me in as a kid more than any book had before. And the plot twists! And Long John Silver! God, so often as a kid I imagined being Jim Hawkins. Now, as I begin to reach John Silver’s age (his 40s), I long for those adventures of my youth.

They say you can find hints of creators in their work. Looking back at your work, which character, piece of art, song, poem, article, etc. most closely resembles you? Why?

This is a tough one, since self-analysis is inherently biased, but I’d say that there is an awful lot of me in both Tyvian Reldamar and Artus in my series The Saga of the Redeemed. Tyvian is the worldly, cynical, arrogant me and Artus is the optimistic, naive, and humble me. Part of the point of the story is that they need each other, even though they often try to escape from each other.

Can you share some details about upcoming projects or what you’re working on now? Do you have releases in 2019 that readers should look for?

Book 4 in The Saga of the Redeemed (my fantasy series)–titled THE FAR FAR BETTER THING–releases on March 5th of 2019. It will be the conclusion of the series.

My short story “Applied Linguistics” will be in the January issue of Analog.

There are some other short works that should be appearing at some point that year, but I don’t have the pub details yet.

Marshall Ryan Maresca

Marshall Ryan Maresca is a fantasy and science-fiction writer, author of the Maradaine Saga: Four parallel series set amid the bustling streets and crime-ridden districts of the exotic city called Maradaine. This includes The Thorn of Dentonhill, A Murder of Mages, The Holver Alley Crew and the forthcoming The Way of the Shield. His work also appeared in Norton Anthology of Hint Fiction and Rick Klaw’s anthology Rayguns Over Texas. He also has had several short plays produced. He lives in Austin with his family.

Visit Marshall Ryan on his Facebook, Twitter, and Website!

With many conventions to choose from and limited time in your schedule, what attracts you to Boskone?

This year will be my fourth time coming to Boskone, third as a panel participant, and I find it to be one of the real standouts of fan run conventions, with the quality of the panels, the breadth of talent attending, and the open, friendly environment.
Plus, I won’t lie, my sister lives in the Boston area, so it gives me the opportunity to visit her family at the same time.

If you could relive your first experience with any book or film, which one would you pick? What is it about this book or film that you want to experience again for the “first time?”

I’m going to have to go with DIE HARD, which remains one of my favorite movies of all time. It really is a masterpiece of structure and character work. Part of why I would want a do-over in experiencing it for the first time is because I really didn’t get a proper go of it the first time around. I first saw it when it was on rotation on HBO, and saw it starting halfway through. So when I did see it from the beginning, I had already been spoiled for the back half. So getting to see it unfold completely fresh, properly from the beginning, that would be a real treat.

What is your favorite memory of a fan interaction at a convention? It could be you as a pro interacting with one of your fans or you as a fan meeting someone you admire.

OK, this is kind of a cheat, but I was recently one of the Guests of Honor at PhilCon, and a few friends from college came out to see me. That included brining their teenage children, who were HUGE FANS of my books and were super excited to talk about them, with me and with each other. So it was wonderful, both as a chance to see old friends, but also to see that kind of enthusiasm in its raw, unfiltered form. That’s exactly why I write books: for people to geek out over these characters and stories as much as I do. And that’s pure joy for me.

Can you share some details about upcoming projects or what you’re working on now? Do you have releases in 2019 that readers should look for?

I’ve got two novels coming out in 2019. First is A PARLIAMENT OF BODIES, which is the third Maradaine Constabulary novel (and the ninth in the overall Maradaine sequence), which comes out March 26th. Our inspector heroes, Satrine and Minox, are called to solve the mystery of a murderous atrocity on the Parliament floor, which will team them up with some of the main characters from the Maradaine Elite series which started with THE WAY OF THE SHIELD last October. And then, in October 2019 I have the next Maradaine Elite novel: SHIELD OF THE PEOPLE, in which our heroes Dayne and Jerinne deal with a radical protestors and a threat to the integrity of the Parliamentary elections.

K.R. Branch

K.R. Branch is a graduate of the University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast MFA program. She lives in Nebraska but goes adventuring at the drop of a hat. Her most recent writing endeavors include participating in #querykombat, presenting a paper at the International Conference for Fantastic in the Arts, and an author spotlight on The Stonecoast Review.

Follow K.R. on her Facebook, Twitter, and Website!

With many conventions to choose from and limited time in your schedule, what attracts you to Boskone?

I attend a lot of large conventions centered around anime and manga which host more than thirty thousand people in a weekend. It’s fun, but it’s an entirely different kind of fun than Boskone’s intimate, laid back atmosphere. At the big conventions, I spend a lot of time people watching. At Boskone, I can actually talk to people!

If you could relive your first experience with any book or film, which one would you pick? What is it about this book or film that you want to experience again for the “first time?”

This is a hard one, because so much of my perception of books and films is connected to where I am in my life at that point in time. For instance, the first time I read “Snowflower and the Secret Fan” I had just had a big fight with a good friend, and when I got to the end I cried for hours, knowing that my friend and I had experienced something very similar to the characters. I sent that book to her as a mea culpa and we’re friends again now.

I’d love to watch all of the Avatar: The Last Airbender (The Nickelodeon series) again for the first time. The sheer wonder of the world, the comedy and drama of the story, the characters, that would be really fun to experience again without spoilers.

What is your favorite memory of a fan interaction at a convention? It could be you as a pro interacting with one of your fans or you as a fan meeting someone you admire.

I met Tamora Pierce at Boskone 2018. I had this tatty old copy of “Wild Magic” with me because when I was a kid I would take this book everywhere – it was one of the first books I bought with my own money in my own decision – I knew I liked Tamora Pierce and she had another book, so I bought it. I’d read in school, on trips, in the bath, and this book looked it. Everyone else in line had these lovely, hardback copies, and I started to get a little nervous. I knew how much this book meant to me, but after seeing all these carefully conserved hardbacks, would she?

Shouldn’t have been worried at all. She carefully opened my half-falling apart book and signed the title page and encouraged me when I sputtered about how she had inspired me to write. Top 10 moment of my life.

Who is your favorite literary character of all time? What is it about this character that you admire?

Mrs. Coulter from “His Dark Materials” series by Phillip Pullman. She is written as a beautiful person doing evil things (and occasionally using her beauty to those ends) which is a nice change from the “ugly person is evil” thing. The way she chooses to end her story is fascinating.


Register for Boskone 56 today!

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