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Diabolical Plots is a Sci-fi/Fantasy zine that covers virtually every media related to the genre from books to movies to video games. This site also features regular content related to the craft of writing. Take a look around!

15 September 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Laura Resnick on Cover Art

MisCookLaura Resnick has authored 6 fantasy-detective-comedy novels (the Esther Diamond series from Daw), 3 fantasy novels (the Silerian trilogy from Tor), 15 romance novels (from Silhouette), many short stories (mostly in DAW anthologies), several essays on print and screen fiction, and “Rejection, Romance, and Royalties: The Wacky World of a Working Writer.”

She won the Campbell award for best writer and was a finalist for the Rita award. She won the Romantic Times Magazine award 3 times. She writes “The Mad Scribbler,” a monthly opinion column for Nink. For the Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America’s bulletin, she wrote a quarterly opinion column, “The Filthy Pro.” She wrote a monthly column, “The Comely Curmedgeon,” for Nink. She has served as member of the board of directors, president elect, and president of Novelists, Inc.

12 September 2014 ~ 20 Comments

On Unqualifying for SFWA

I don’t approve, though, of the 10,000 word limit. Presumably there was a specific reason–but what is that reason? It seems to me that this is a strategy specifically designed to keep flash fiction from counting toward membership. I don’t know if this is another one of those conversations where some older members of the organization think that SFWA membership should be kept only to those who have writing as their only job. Could you do that? Sure. But the organization would be small and much more irrelevant, and would explicitly exclude a whole ton of award winning authors like Ken Liu who have day jobs. Who does that benefit exactly?

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10 September 2014 ~ 0 Comments

“The Original Blue Fairy is a Cruel Monster” or “My Review of The Adventures of Pinocchio”

I was working on a story loosely inspired by Pinocchio, and so to understand my source material as completely as possible, I wanted to read the original for a basis of comparison. I was quite surprised by what I found there. In particular, the character that Disney based their Blue Fairy character on.

08 September 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Picking Apart “The Cold Equations”

The story takes place on an emergency dispatch ship headed for a colony planet with a load of desparately needed medical supplies. Our protagonist finds a stowaway on board his ship, a teenage girl who has done this to visit her brother on the colony planet. This is a major problem because these runs are planned with just enough fuel to safely reach their destination. She thought that she would only get fined for sneaking on, but punishment for stowing away is death, to be sucked out of the airlock. It’s apparently meant to be a commentary on the coldness of reasoning that would be necessary for space travel. And that’s an interesting topic, but in my opinion the premise has so many monumental flaws that it falls apart on the least inspection. I had heard the general premise before and was expecting to feel for the story, but when I listened to the particulars I was so frustrated that this situation could exist, and that the people in this situation are so incredibly stupid, that I just couldn’t buy into it, emotionally or intellectually.

05 September 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Interview: Literary Agent Amy Boggs

amy-boggs-photoLiterary agent Amy Boggs is a sci-fi/fantasy geek who has been professionally geeking out over books at Donald Maass agency since 2009. She specializes in speculative fiction and is especially interested in high fantasy, urban fantasy, steampunk (and its variations), YA, MG, and alternate history.

03 September 2014 ~ 1 Comment

Book Review: Speaker for the Dead

Speaker for the Dead is the sequel to Ender’s Game. Ender’s Game was first a short story and then was expanded to a novel, and just last year was made into a movie. I reviewed the novel and the movie in a previous article. As usual I will try to avoid spoilers for the story being reviewed, but I’m not even going to try to avoid spoilers for Ender’s Game, so if you don’t want to find out some of what happens in that book then go read it and come back.

01 September 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Interview: Nancy Kress

Nancy KressNancy Kress is an award winning author, Asimov’s regular, and workshop instructor. She authors a book in Writer’s Digest’s “Write Great Fiction” series and was a columnist for Writer’s Digest. Here she offers how-to insights into character development.

29 August 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Podcast Spotlight: Extruding America

“Searching for the heart of a nation… in the throat of its people.” Thus is the mission of Extruding America, the brainchild of podcaster Gerard Armbruster. His mission: to deliver a nice slice of Americana straight to your ears with a generous dollop of profundity on top. Such as Stetson Tudd who lives in the state of Washington and has delivered periodic Postcards from Battersea, and… Well, admittedly, Gerard has only one correspondent. But don’t tell Stetson that.

27 August 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Mike Resnick on “No Heavy-Lifting Sales”

Mike_ResnickGordy Dickson told me close to half a century ago that if you were good, and prolific, and an aggressive marketer, there would come a point 25 years into your career where you received a pleasant surprise (which is to say, a reprint or foreign sale) in your mail box every week, all for writing just those two words, ‘Mike’ and ‘Resnick’ on a contract.

25 August 2014 ~ 2 Comments

Interview: Rhiannon Held

R-Held-230x300Rhiannon Held is a frequent panelist at writer’s conferences. She is a archaeologist by profession. She is the author of the Silver series, an urban fantasy published by Tor. In this interview, she answers questions about character development and world building, then wraps up by sharing her take on critique groups.