Some of you know I’ve been working on a new project with friends called Boralis Books. Boralis Books arose out of my frustration with New York publishing rejecting strong, well written page turners because they “didn’t know how to market them.” It’s happened to me several times and I know other authors have experienced the same frustration. So I decided to publish some novels myself, and to me, the best way to do it is to create a press and recruit staff—editors, proofers, designers—and try and put out quality product that rivals New York quality books.
Eventually, Boralis Books will release titles by multiple authors: novels, anthologies, collections, maybe a few novellas too. But for now, it is starting with three near future procedural thrillers by me. Every project will depend upon the success of prior projects for funding, so the initial plan is to release three books a year, one every four months, and see how it goes. Books will be released in hardcover, trade paperback, and ebooks—with audio to come as available. All books will be distributed via Ingram Sparks so bookstores anywhere can stock them if they desire, with ebooks initially exclusive to Kindle and then expanding from time to time to other mediums. We will, of course, also set up a Boralis Books store for selling the other formats as soon as we can.
For information on what we have so far, please check out Boralis Books at www.boralisbooks.com, a work in progress for sure. As more authors and projects are chosen, we will post information there. We will not be doing open submissions at least initially. I don’t have the time or resources to review them adequately and keep up with other plans. But we leave open that option for down the road.
Meanwhile, we plan to publish both speculative fiction and mystery/thriller with a few others possibly mixed in. We hope you’ll check out what we’re doing. Our first release will be Simon Says, the firs in my John Simon thrillers, which is Bosch meets Lethal Weapon with robots. It’s filled with action, strong memorable characters and humor and set in 2029 Kansas City, with a tough Luddite cop teaming with an android witness to solve a nanotech crime and his partner’s kidnapping. Future books will follow.
As always, launching a small press is a challenging endeavor, but having edited numerous novels and short stories, I hope I am up to the task with a lot of friends for support. Our editorial staff includes Guy Anthony Demarco, an MFA in Creative Writing, who also does our interior design. A.R. Crebs will be our book trailer and cover designer and artist, though we may employ others as time goes on. I also have some proofers and a few others as well.
Be sure and check us out. Simon Says is up for preorder now on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and wherever books are sold!
For those wanting to connect, here are my confirmed tour dates so far for Fall 2017. Still trying to fill in open weekends in November with dates in either Arkansas, Nebraska, or Iowa. John Morris (aka Alexi), hope to see you there.
Oct. 5-8, 2017 New York Comic Con, Javits Center, New York City, NY, Guest, Book Launches: Predator: If It Bleeds (Titan) and Infinite Stars (Titan)
Please welcome to my blog today on her latest blog tour, the talented Gail Z. Martin.
by Gail Z. Martin
When I was a kid, I picked my breakfast cereal by the toy surprise in the bottom of the bag. That hidden treasure mattered to me a whole lot more than the flavor of the corn flakes.
So I find it interesting that in fiction, readers are discovering the allure of a new type of ‘serial’–serialized fiction. Of course, serials aren’t new. Charles Dickens made his living writing for magazines, stretching his stories out in installments for a breathless reading public. Magazines in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries ran a lot of serialized fiction, with readers awaiting the next installment in the forthcoming issue. And for a while, ‘penny dreadful’ writers cranked out lurid pulp fiction at a brisk rate, much like episodic TV does nowadays. Back in the day, radio shows also serialized stories, so that listeners would ‘tune in again next week’ for the next thrilling segment.
With the demise of many magazines, it took the internet and digital publishing to breathe new life into serialized fiction. Podcasters were quick to embrace the idea, with folks like Scott Sigler and JC Hutchins doing very well with the concept, and others like Christiana Ellis, Tee Morris, Rich Sigfrit and PG Holyfield bringing back the dramatic multi-actor radio drama format for serialized stories.
I took the leap into doing serialized novels with my Jonmarc Vahanian Adventures ebook short stories and novellas a few years ago. The series focuses on the backstory for a favorite character in my Chronicles of the Necromancer/Fallen Kings series, someone with a dark past whom readers wanted to know more about. I began writing sequential short stories that will add up, eventually, to three full novels about Jonmarc.
The Shadowed Path, my new book from Solaris Books, is a collection of the first ten of those short stories (plus an exclusive eleventh story) that comprise the first third of Jonmarc’s story. Taken together, they form a novel with a full story arc. I’ve had a lot of fun writing the stories, and having the chance to share Jonmarc’s background, since he’s a favorite of mine, too. There are eight additional stories available in ebook beyond those collected in The Shadowed Path, with three more novellas coming later this year.
Serializing a story requires a slightly different approach from writing a regular novel, because each individual ‘episode’ has to have its own internal arc to a greater degree than do chapters in a book. The stories need to be able to stand on their own, but also link together to build a greater whole. It’s an interesting writing challenge, and I’ve been enjoying working with it.
Readers and authors get some wins with a serialized story that are also different from a regular novel, or stand-alone short fiction. Readers don’t have to wait as long for the story to unfold, but still have the anticipation of the upcoming installment, which is familiar to people who watch episodic TV. For those who prefer to binge read like they binge watch, the sequential short stories will eventually be collected into a larger, cohesive whole.
For the author, it’s nice to get feedback throughout the process instead of only at the conclusion of a full novel. Bringing out episodic work on a regular basis maintains a relationship and an ongoing connection with readers, preserving that link between books. And it’s a great way for authors who may have contractual obstacles that restrict bringing out new ‘novels’ (due to publisher right of first refusal, etc.) to be able to still create larger, cohesive works. Personally, I’m a fan of bringing out additional, sequential stories that tie into my novels because there are a lot of smaller adventures I enjoy sharing with readers that involve the characters and setting and which happen outside the full novels and which introduce secondary characters or expand on the world building.
My Deadly Curiosities Adventures short stories expand on the novels in my dark urban fantasy series with additional episodes featuring more cursed and haunted objects and supernatural threats. Readers get a chance to know the main and secondary characters better and spend more time in the modern-day Charleston, SC atmosphere. The first 10 of those stories with Cassidy, Teag and Sorren, are collected for the first time ever in Trifles and Folly, currently part of the Modern Magic ebook boxed set with 12 full-length books by 13 bestselling dark fantasy authors, just $1.99, only on Kindle for a limited time.
The Storm and Fury Adventures continue the Steampunk world of Iron & Blood, with Department of Supernatural Investigation agents Mitch Storm and Jacob Drangosavich fighting clockwork monsters and supernatural evil in 1898 alternate history Pittsburgh. And my Blaine McFadden Adventures will eventually provide six sequential, serialized novellas that fill a six-year gap in my novel Ice Forged. Three of those novellas are currently available, either individually or collected in King’s Convicts.
For me, the prize in the serial is the chance to tell more stories, explore more adventures, and keep readers on the edge of their seats, waiting for the next installment. So dig in!
From June 21-June 30 I’ll be doing my annual Hawthorn Moon Sneak Peek Event blog tour, and I hope readers will stop over to my website, find out what all is going on and where to find the posts, giveaways, contests and fun events. And of course, please look for The Shadowed Path at your favorite bookseller!
The Hawthorn Moon Sneak Peek Event includes book giveaways, free excerpts, all-new guest blog posts and author Q&A on 22 awesome partner sites around the globe. I’ll also be hosting many of my Modern Magic co-authors guest posting on my DisquietingVisions.com blog during the tour. For a full list of where to go to get the goodies, visit www.AscendantKingdoms.com.
An Excerpt from Raider’s Curse, part of The Shadowed Path:
Jonmarc took off running. At fifteen, he was tall, just a bit over six feet. Years of working
alongside his father in the forge had given him a strong back and muscular arms. A mop of
chestnut-brown hair hung in his brown eyes, and he pushed it out of the way as he ran.
A worn path led to the open shed that was his father’s forge. Jonmarc could hear the steady
pounding of his father’s hammer on the anvil. The sound echoed from the hills, steady as a
heartbeat. He skidded to a stop just outside the doors.
Anselm Vahanian swung a heavy hammer in his right hand while his gloved left hand turned
the piece of metal on the anvil. Sparks flew around him, landing on the long sleeves of his rough-
woven shirt, his gloves, and his leather apron. The forge smelled of coal, iron, and sweat. To one
side lay two swords Anselm had completed for a client in the village. On a table lay a variety of
farm tools—iron pots and pans, and hoops for the cooper’s barrels. Jonmarc had helped to forge
several of the pieces, though he longed to work on swords, like his father.
“Mother said to tell you to wash up for dinner,” Jonmarc shouted above the clanging.
Anselm stopped and looked at him. “I’ll eat supper later. You know I can’t stop in the middle
of something when the iron is hot.”
Jonmarc nodded. “I know. I’ll tell her to put a plate aside for you.” He paused, and Anselm
looked at him quizzically, waiting for the unspoken question.
“Have you talked to any of the fishermen lately?” Jonmarc tried to make the question sound
off-handed, but Anselm frowned as if he caught the undercurrent of concern.
“You mean the talk about raiders,” Anselm replied, and struck the iron he was working.
“Do you think it’s more than just talk?”
Anselm didn’t answer until he put the iron bar back into the furnace to heat up. He was
Jonmarc’s height, with a head of wiry dark hair and brown eyes that glinted with intelligence. A
lifetime in the forge had given him broad shoulders and a powerful physique. His profession also
showed in the small white burns that marked his hands and arms, scars too numerous to count.
Jonmarc had gained a few of those burn scars too, but not nearly as many as his father. Not yet.
“Maybe,” Anselm replied. “The real people to talk to are the traders. Their ships go up and
down the Northern Sea coast, stopping at all the villages. I always get news when I trade iron
“Have you heard anything?”
Anselm turned the iron rod in the furnace. “Some. One of the villages on the other side of the
bay burned. Everyone was gone when the traders came. No way to know why or how. Eiderford,
down the coast, did have a run-in with raiders a few months ago.” He eyed the iron, and turned it
one more time.
“So there are raiders,” Jonmarc replied.
Anselm shrugged. “There are always raiders. But there’s less to attract them here in
Lunsbetter than in Eiderford. We’re not a proper city, and we’re as like to barter as deal in coin,
so there’s less to steal.”
Unless they want food, livestock, or women, Jonmarc thought. And there are enough people
who trade with the ships that there’s probably more coin here than anyone wants to admit.
“There’s a garrison of the king’s soldiers beyond Ebbetshire,” Jonmarc replied. “Can’t they
stop the raiders?”
Anselm shrugged. “They can’t guard every village along the coast,” he said. “And they’d
have to know for certain when a raid was planned.” He shook his head. “No, we’re on our own.”
“Don’t worry yourself about it,” Anselm said, drawing the rod out of the furnace and placing
it on the anvil. “We’ve doubled the patrols, and the fishermen are on alert.” He grinned. “And
tomorrow, those swords are going down to the constable and the sheriff. We’ll be fine. Pump the
bellows for me. The fire’s grown cold.”
Anselm stood in front of a large open furnace filled with glowing coals. Jonmarc pumped the
bellows that were attached to the back of the furnace, and the coals flared brighter, flames licking
across their surface. Anselm lifted his hammer to strike the iron. “Now get back up to the house.
Your mother’s waiting. Just save some for me.”
“I’ll make sure of it,” Jonmarc replied. The clatter of the hammer drowned out anything else
he might have asked. He stepped out into the cool night, and started back up the path to the
house. His stomach rumbled and he fancied that he could smell the stew. But the worry he felt
when he went to the forge had not lifted; if anything, his father’s comments increased Jonmarc’s
concern than the warnings about raiders were not mere tales.
If father says the men are keeping their eye out for trouble, then that’s the end of it, he
thought. Naught I can do. But he remembered his comment to Neil about keeping the axe
sharpened, and on the way back to the house, he detoured into the barn. Thanks to his father’s
craft, they were well-stocked with farm implements.
He walked over to the space his father used to butcher meat. Butchering wasn’t a pleasant
job, but it was necessary, and a task with which Jonmarc was well acquainted. He had learned
the craft from his father, practiced enough that it no longer made him lose his dinner to be awash
in blood and entrails. His father had taught him to strike swiftly and cleanly, to block out the
death cries of the terrified livestock, to go to a cold place inside himself until the job was done.
He had even learned a few tricks of the trade, like how to hamstring a panicked animal that was
likely to kick or buck. But nothing about how to fight men.
On the wall hung an impressive variety of knives. He selected a large butcher knife with a
wicked blade as well as a smaller boning knife, and made his way around to the back door,
hiding the knives among his mother’s herbs before going in for supper. Tonight, when everyone
was in bed, he would come back for them—one for him, and one for Neil. Just in case the men
If you want to see more stories about Jonmarc Vahanian, check out The Chronicles of the
Necromancer series and The Fallen Kings Cycle books, as well as the Jonmarc Vahanian
Gail Z. Martin is the author of The Shadowed Path (Solaris Books), Vendetta: A Deadly Curiosities Novel in her urban fantasy series set in Charleston, SC (Solaris Books); Shadow and Flame the fourth and final book in the Ascendant Kingdoms Saga (Orbit Books); and Iron and Blood a new Steampunk series (Solaris Books) co-authored with Larry N. Martin.
She is also author of Ice Forged, Reign of Ash and War of Shadows in The Ascendant Kingdoms Saga, The Chronicles of The Necromancer series (The Summoner, The Blood King, Dark Haven, Dark Lady’s Chosen); The Fallen Kings Cycle (The Sworn, The Dread) and the urban fantasy novel Deadly Curiosities. Gail writes three ebook series: The Jonmarc Vahanian Adventures, The Deadly Curiosities Adventures and The Blaine McFadden Adventures. The Storm and Fury Adventures, steampunk stories set in the Iron & Blood world, are co-authored with Larry N. Martin.
Her work has appeared in over 30 US/UK anthologies. Newest anthologies include: Robots, The Big Bad 2, Athena’s Daughters, Heroes, Space, Contact Light, With Great Power, The Weird Wild West, The Side of Good/The Side of Evil, Alien Artifacts, Cinched: Imagination Unbound, Realms of Imagination, Gaslight and Grimm, Baker Street Irregulars, Clockwork Universe: Steampunk vs. Aliens.
Still time to order copies of my books for that special someone. I have copies of all of my titles. Tell me which one you want and if you want it personalized too or just signed.
Email me at bryan at bryanthomasschmidt.net. I will tell you how much to paypal and then priority mail the bubblewrapped, signed books wherever you want.
Typically I charge $15 per trade paperback plus $5 priority mail but international I’d have to calculate. This helps me. It helps your loved ones and friends by giving them good materials. And it helps you save time shopping. A 3-way win.
Today, my friend, Howard Andrew Jones, one of my favorite writers, shares with us about his writing process. His latest Pathfinder Tales novel, Beyong The Pool of Stars, is out now from TOR and Paizo. But I’ve enjoyed his previous Pathfinder and original novels very much as well. Check them out and enjoy his wise words.
A writing career is a work in progress. I’m always striving to better my writing process.
I suppose I still live in hope that I’ll produce 5k or more of workable prose every day like some of my friends do. And it happens for me, sometimes. More often, though, I’m a 2k to 3k guy. And I’ve decided that might just be the way it works for me, so more and more I’m trying to make sure that the 2 or 3 thousand words I produce are useful ones.
Bit by bit, tweak by tweak, I’ve come to my current method, and it’s served me well for Beyond the Pool of Stars as well as for the book that immediately preceded it and the two books currently on my hard drive. I’ll detail it for you in the hopes you’ll find it useful.
First, three steps I have to take once I have the germ of the novel’s idea:
It probably goes without saying that you have to know your characters. Develop principal characters – and keep that number small – that fascinate you. If you don’t find them interesting no one else will.
Find out what their goals are, then find a way to keep them away in an entertaining way.
Know your villain and what she wants. And make her interesting as well, or you’ll be just as bored as your readers whenever your characters interact with her.
Once I have those pieces I set to work on the outline. I block it out loosely, imagining important scenes. I try to take my characters to fascinating places. Why not create backdrops of wonder with a few lines of description it would take a film company millions to create?
Once I have a basic feel for beginning, middle, and end, I get to plotting chapter by chapter and scene by scene, and my current favorite trick is to block it out like a play.
I write entire scenes with just dialogue and occasional stage direction. It might be that I can perfectly picture the tone of voice or even a moment of description, and if I do, I go ahead and drop it in even during this rough “stage draft.” There aren’t any hard and fast rules for what I can or can’t do at any stage, after all, and if I picture something I really like I try to get it down, even if it’s just a few quick notes.
Once I get the scene working I can either move on to the next section, or punch away at it, getting the dialogue just right. If the scene’s working properly then the more I work on dialogue, the better I can picture it… and the more solid the scene or chapter becomes as I polish. I add detail as I work until that dialogue is surrounded by useful prose and the stage descriptions of what characters are doing transforms into fluid actions.
A stage draft enables me to experiment with the dialogue and flow without investing a whole lot of energy into finessing metaphor and getting into a character’s internal thoughts. If something doesn’t work and the scene goes off the rails, I haven’t wasted hours polishing fool’s gold. And believe me, I’ve done that before.
Neither this method nor any other can work for every writer. If a method worked perfectly for everyone, there wouldn’t be so many writer self-help books out there.
I think it’s been successful for me because I’ve always found that dialogue comes easily. You should always be aware of your weaknesses and work to overcome them. But during the initial composition stages, whatever methods you, try to play to your strengths.
Howard Andrew Jones is the critically acclaimed author of The Desert of Souls, The Bones of the Old Ones, and Pathfinder novels Plague of Shadows, Stalking the Beast and the hot off the presses Beyond the Pool of Stars. A former Black Gate Editor, he also assembled and edited 8 collections of historical fiction writer Harold Lamb’s work for the University of Nebraska Press. He can be found lurking at www.howardandrewjones.com. Follow him on Twitter @howardandrewjon
Well, I said I was going to do it, and so here I am. At present, I don’t do general open calls because I just can’t read through all that would come in for the 3-4 anthologies I do a year. But one reason I got into anthology editing was to create opportunities not just for me, but for other writers, so instead I have decided to offer two week annual submissions periods for basically earning your way onto my invite list. So that first period will begin Monday and run two weeks, through September 21st. Here are the parameters:
1) Send your best story in RTF, DOC or PDF format. Make it easy on me to read your work. If I can’t open the file, I won’t read it.
2) Send me the best thing you have, published, unpublished, etc. I am NOT BUYING. All my current projects are full, BUT I am starting to pitch for anthologies in 2017 and 2018, so I will need writers when they sell, which means, I want to see what you can do. If I like your voice, craft, and style, then I will put you on my list.
3) Expect to wait a while. I am going to read through what I get, but it will take a while to read it because other ediitng and reading priorities must come first. The good news is, you can go about submitting elsewhere and living your life, because I am not buying right now so I don’t need exclusivity.
4) Please use standard manuscript formatting. I.E. double spaced, serif font, 12 point type, italics instead of underlining, wordcount and contact info above title on front page, etc. Also, NUMBER PAGES so if I read offline and drop one, I can easily find where the pages go and in what order.
5) If you story is over 7500 words, please contact me first.
6) If I have already bought stories from you or you know I own your books or stories, you just need to ask to be included. Please feel no need to submit pieces to this call. I will have enough to read already.
That’s it. That simple. Send these files to bryan at bryanthomasschmidt.net starting Monday with the subject: OPEN CALL (story name).
I will read and let you know if you’re invited to my list.
Oh, a couple notes on taste:
I like adventure stories more than lesson stories, but if you can do both, I will be awesomely impressed and pleased. I like character driven stories. I like heroes I can admire, but if the story is strong enough, of course, any of this won’t matter. I also do not like overuse of foul language or gratituitous sex and violence, so keep in mind that since I do PG themed anthologies mostly, your story samples should fit those parameters as much as possible. Beyond that, I like all kinds of genres, but I am not a huge vampire or zombie fan, just a warning.
I do reserve the right to just say no. I don’t owe you a slot, nor do I owe you an explanation. Unfortunately, this has to be said given the nature of the www world today, sot here it is. It is not that I plan to just arbitrarily say no without some kind of explanation, but I probably don’t have time to give long notes on every story. I don’t promise to read the whole thing either. If I don’t like it, I will treat it like any other slush. Time management is key. It is not personal. It is subjective and ruled by my personal taste, yes. I am open to people of all beliefs, lifestyles, ethinic backgrounds, cultures, etc. In fact, I strongly seek it out and don’t get enough from POC and non-western writers, so by all means, let me see what you’ve got.
I appreciate the opportunity to look at your work and your patience through this process, and I look forward to working with many of you in the future.
Bryan Thomas Schmidt is an author and Hugo-nominated editor of adult and children’s science fiction and fantasy novels and anthologies. His debut novel, The Worker Prince, received Honorable Mention on Barnes & Noble’s Year’s Best Science Fiction Releases of 2011, and was followed by two sequels. As editor, his anthologies include Shattered Shields (Baen, 2014), Beyond The Sun (Fairwood, 2013), Raygun Chronicles (Every Day Publishing, 2013) and Space Battles (Flying Pen Press, 2012) with two more forthcoming from Baen Books and St. Martin’s Griffin in 2015 and 2016. He is also developmental editor for WordFire Press, owned by New York Times Bestselling author Kevin J. Anderson and Rebecca Moesta. Books he’s edited include The Martian by Andy Weir, My Big Fat Demonslayer Wedding by Angie Fox, The Outpost by Mike Resnick, A Game Of Authors by Frank Herbert and more. From December 2010 to earlier this year, he hosted Science Fiction and Fantasy Writer’s Chat the first Wednesday of every month at 9 P.M. ET on Twitter under the hashtag #sffwrtcht and is a frequent guest and panelist at World Cons and other conventions. His website is www.bryanthomasschmidt. Twitter: @BryanThomasS
Here’s my schedule for the World Science Fiction Convention, Sasquan, in Spokane, Washington, August 18-23, 2015. I look forward to seeing some of you there. I will be at the WordFire Party, Wednesday night, the Baen Books Party, Thursday Night, the Fairwood Press Party, Friday and the Hugo Loser’s Party, Saturday. Beyond that, I will be wandering and at the WordFire Press table in the Dealer’s Room.
Thursday, August 20th
PANEL: The Work of Being a Writer, Thursday 9:00 – 9:45, Bays 111A (CC)
Writers write, but there’s more to being a writer than writing. Come learn how to work with editors, agents, other writers, marketers, and fans. Can writers’ groups and social media make you or break you? Learn about all the work involved in being a writer and some strategies for success.
Randy Henderson (M) , Brenda Cooper, Bryan Thomas Schmidt, Susan Palwick
Join a panelist and up to 9 other fans for a small discussion. Coffee and snacks available for sale on the 2nd floor. Requires advance sign-up.
PANEL: The Changing Role of the Editor, Friday 3:00 – 3:45, Bays 111B (CC)
With the various ways that fiction is published (print/online/audio/self-published), how is the role of editor changing? Does the editor need to be more technician than tweaker? Is self-publishing making the editor’s job obsolete?
Gordon Van Gelder (M), Scott H. Andrews – Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Hugo Nominee, Yanni Kuznia – Subterranean Press , Wendy S. Delmater – Abyss and Apex – Hugo Nominee, Bryan Thomas Schmidt – Hugo Nominee
Saturday, August 22nd
Autographing – Jeffrey A. Carver, David Hartwell, Esther Jones, David Peterson, Bryan Thomas Schmidt, Saturday 10:00 – 10:45, Exhibit Hall B (CC)
Jeffrey A. Carver, Esther Jones, David Peterson, Bryan Thomas Schmidt, David Hartwell
Hugo Awards Ceremony, Saturday 8:00 – 10:30, INB Performing Arts Center (CC)
The 2015 Hugo Awards promises to be one of the most memorable ceremonies in years. Come be a part of history. Your Masters of Ceremony will be Sasquan Guest of Honor David Gerrold and Tananarive Due, and they’ve both promised an entertaining ceremony.
As most of you know, I am a very busy anthologist, with 8 projects in various stages of contract and development through 2017. Most of these have their allotment of writers already, but as I develop new projects, I hope to expand my stable. Because of budget and busyness, my reading time is limited and so slush is just not something I can manage at the moment, however, I have come up with an option that will appeal to some of you.
I am ending Science Fiction and Fantasy Writer’s Chat in August. This is because of sheer exhaustion from four years, fading enthusiasm from me and regulars, and also needing time to read for both fun and work that I can’t find anywhere else. Interviewing people, even twice a week, and reading one of their books to do so, is a tremendous time commitment. I have had to put in 20 hours a week to it since starting in 2010. I just can’t keep up with that and slush, and I can’t read novels by friends or colleagues for fun, blurbs or more. Add to that my work in Acquisitions and Development for Wordfire as a Junior Editor, and I just am falling further and further behind. I hate that, so something had to give.
So the solution is that I will be doing an open submission period of two weeks, starting this Fall (September 1 through 15) where writers can send me their best work. The idea is to give me a chance to get to know your work–voice, style, etc. for consideration toward future projects with openings. I am not going to buy these stories. So send your best, whichever speculative genre you want. The sole exception is erotica. I don’t publish or buy it so it won’t be the best sample for me. I don’t promise quick turn around. It may, in fact, take me months to get through the submissions. But if you are professional quality in your writing, you will be considered for invites to future anthologies. You will be in the door. I will limit the word count, probably 6k words and under, but those details shall be announced when the Fall comes. And I will limit to one piece per writer as well. I need to be able to see an end game here if I ever hope to do it again. Published work is fine. I will be flexible on format as well. I will make it easy for you, so please do the same for me.
Further details will be announced when the submission time gets closer. But since many busy anthologists just don’t have time and resources to do many open calls, consider this a great chance to get into projects that may interest you in the future. If you are put in my pool, I will notify you and invite you to appropriate future projects. You also have the right to ask about openings when I announce projects you want to be invited to. Yes, people do that anyway, but if I don’t know your work, I almost always say no. Just a practicality. In any case, get those submissions ready. Reading stuff I’ve edited for taste might be a great way to see what I like in the meantime. I look forward to discovering new colleagues to work with.
Bryan Thomas Schmidt is an author and Hugo nominated editor of adult and children’s speculative fiction. His debut novel, The Worker Prince received Honorable Mention on Barnes & Noble Book Club’s Year’s Best Science Fiction Releases for 2011. His short stories have appeared in magazines, anthologies and online. His anthologies as editor include Shattered Shields with co-editor Jennifer Brozek for Baen, Mission: Tomorrow, Galactic Games, Little Green Men–Attack! and Monster Hunter Tales (with Larry Correia) all forthcoming also for Baen, Joe Ledger: Unstoppable with Jonathan Maberry for St. Martin’s Griffin (forthcoming 2017), Space Battles: Full Throttle Space Tales #6, Beyond The Sun and Raygun Chronicles: Space Opera For a New Age. He hosts #sffwrtcht (Science Fiction & Fantasy Writer’s Chat) Wednesdays at 9 pm ET on Twitter as @SFFWRTCHT.
Well, another Con has arrived. From Friday through Sunday, I’ll be in Springdale, Arkansas at the Holiday Inn Conference Center for GlitchCon with the lovely Claire Ashgrove, my best bud and editing partner in Finish The Story, Jonathan Maberry and David Farland and several others. Here’s a full schedule of programming. See participants at the website at http://www.glitchcon.com/
FRIDAY, August 1
3:00 – 3:50 pm Creating Comics and Graphic Novels (Jonathan M. /
David F. / Kyle / *Tommy) (Steam Room)
5:00 OPENING CEREMONIES (John Q. Hammons Hall)
6:00 – 6:50 pm Pulp Fiction (Jonathan M. / David F. / Tommy / Bryan
S. / Phillip D.)(Steam Room)
6:00 – 8:00pm Story In A Bag, lead by Dyann Love Barr & Claire A. (Anime & Cosplay)
7:30 p.m. — David F. / Jonathan M. / Claire / Bryan to dinner
SATURDAY, August 2
10:00 – 10:50 — Collaboration (Sue S. / Bill A. / Brad S. / Dyann) (Steam Room)
12:00 – 12:50 — Series Writing (Saranna D. / David F. / Jonathan
M. / Bill A. / Claire A. / Dyann LB) (Anime & Cosplay)
1:00 – 1:50 — Writing 101 (David F. / Phillip D. / Sue S. / Dyan LB
/ Claire A. / Saranna D. / Bryan S. (MOD)) (Steam Room)
2:00-2:50 – Old School Monsters (Jonathan M.)(Steam Room)
3:00 – 3:50 pm Horror – Then and Now (Jonathan M. / David F.
/ Brad S./ Saranna D.)
4:00 – 4:50 — The Fantasy Allure (Jonathan M / David F. / Bryan S.
/ Brad S. / Claire A. / Saranna (MOD))(Steam Room)
7:00 – 7:50 — World Building (Sue S. / Bill A. / Dyann LB / Bryan
Well, ConQuest 45 – Noir has come and gone, and I am calling it a great success. This is the one Con I try to make annually, because it’s local and put on by my local fan group, which is a great group of people. Glen Cook has been attending as a dealer for years, but this year we also honored him as Guest Of Honor, and that was a blast. I panelled with Glen several times including a Spec Noir panel with Mark W. Tiedemann (shown), a live GOH interview which neither of us wanted to end but did, and a military fantasy panel also featuring Kij Johnson and Robin Wayne Bailey.
On Friday night, Robin Wayne Bailey, Todd Hunter and I threw an impromptu launch party for Raygun Chronicles: Space Opera For A New Age, which released last December after funding on Kickstarter the previous March, and which features stories by Todd and Robin as well as many others, including Seanan McGuire, David Farland, Brenda Cooper, Sarah A. Hoyt, Allen M. Steele, and A.C. Crispin. The party was hopping for several hours and a Who’s Who of the Con stopped by, later voting us Best Party at the Closing Ceremonies. I also sold out of copies, for the first time ever, selling 19 and giving away 2. So I had to order more for the next Con. I call that a success./
Once again, the Basic Editing 101 For Writers panel that my editing partner Claire Ashgrove and I initiated last year was a hit with really strong attendance, including Artist GOH David Lee Pancake, who told me it was the best, clearest panel he’d seen on basic issues like passives, telling vs. showing, etc. I hadn’t encountered David yet, due to my busy schedule, so afterwards I headed down to the art show and wound up buying one of his beautiful works.
I also did a panel on Heroes and Heroines with Kij Johnson and others, a Writing For Young Audiences panel with Chris McKitterick and K.D. McEntire, and several others. Only my Abraham Lincoln Dinosaur Hunter reading drew interest as my first reading was Friday night during check in time, so I got an extra hour of rest pre-Con.
An Editor’s Are Not The Enemy panel with Selina Rosen, Deanna Sjojander and Rich Horton was lively, and brought up interesting issues about publishing traditional vs. self-publishing vs. small press which I hope were helpful.
The Con Suite, which I made extensive use of this year, unlike last year, was also well stocked and managed and I relied on it for most of my meals outside a Friday dinner with Dennis and Diane Barr and Saturday dinner with Rich and MaryAnne Horton.
Altogether, a delightful time and well worth attending, even though I arrived tired and not sure I was not sure I was ready. I quickly slipped into a different frame of mind and really enjoyed myself. Thanks to the Con Comm, and the party group especially for helping make this such a delightful experience.
After the Con, I came home and announced an upcoming Kickstarter anthology I’ve really been looking forward to. And I know it’s going to be a real special and fun project to complete. A fitting way to close the Con, with inspiration.
Bryan Thomas Schmidt is an author and editor of adult and children’s speculative fiction. His debut novel, The Worker Prince received Honorable Mention on Barnes & Noble Book Club’s Year’s Best Science Fiction Releases for 2011. His first children’s books, 102 More Hilarious Dinosaur Books For Kids and Abraham Lincoln: Dinosaur Hunter- Land Of Legends appeared from Delabarre Publishing in 2012. His short stories have appeared in magazines, anthologies and online. He edited the anthologies Space Battles: Full Throttle Space Tales #6 for Flying Pen Press,Beyond The Sun for Fairwood Press, Raygun Chronicles: Space Opera For a New Age for Every Day, and Shattered Shields with coeditor Jennifer Brozek for Baen Books (forthcoming). He is currently working on Gaslamp Terrors and Mission Tomorrow: A New Century Of Exploration. He hosts #sffwrtcht (Science Fiction and Fantasy Writer’s Chat) Wednesdays at 9 pm ET on Twitter,