“As far as I can recall, the first time I spoke with Jacob Weisman was at the 1993 worldcon in San Francisco. My Sonoma County science fiction writing workshop, the Spellbinders, had just issued a collection showcasing the fiction various members had produced over the previous couple of decades, and we were putting on a publication-launch party at the con. When Jacob was told that we had produced the trade paperback volume on our own, he began asking what methods we had used, what steps we had taken, what resources we had found essential. Jacob hadn’t yet founded Tachyon, but as he turned Spells Unbound this way and that, I could see the light in his eyes: “I can do something like this. I’M GOING to do something like this.” It was a certainty. The only question in my mind was whether the epiphany was a thing of that very moment, or if he had years earlier made it his goal to someday be a publisher of science fiction. (I assume it was the years-earlier scenario, but I’ve never actually asked him about it.)
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The latest reviews and mentions of Tachyon titles and authors from around the web.
THE BIBLIOSANCTUM is intrigued by Kimberly Unger’s forthcoming NUCLEATION (not due until November, but available for pre-order from your favorite bookseller or direct from Tachyon and for reviewers via EDELWEISS and NETGALLEY).
With thanks to Tachyon Publications I also received NUCLEATION by Kimberly Unger, a debut author and game designer who has written a sci-fi techno-thriller involving VR, nanites, corporate espionage, a murder mystery and more. Whew, that’s a lot! But it’s certainly hooked my interest.
On the Tachyon Publications Channel, meet the publisher Jacob Weisman.
Arley Sorg, for CLARKESWORLD, interviews Kate Elliott about her new novel Unconquerable Sun.
Unconquerable Sun marks a return to space opera at novel length. Is the timing purely about the whims of the creative muse, or are there other aspects to it? Why space opera and why now?
Unconquerable Sun will be my twenty-seventh published novel. Since seven of my first eight published novels were science fiction, I started out thinking of myself as an SF writer more than as a fantasy writer. After this beginning, however, I became best known for the Crown of Stars epic fantasy series. Its success kept me in fantasy for quite a while longer. To be clear, I love both SF and F; to me they all nestle under the larger umbrella of speculative fiction. So, writing space opera now is really me going back to my roots in SF.
Rick Klaw participates in American Sci-Fi Classics Roll-A-Panel: Movies From 1990, 1995, 2000.
FIRESIDE publishes, in both text and audio format, “The Liberation of Ghost Story” by Elly Bangs. Watch for Bangs’ first novel UNITY, coming from Tachyon in Spring 2021.
Let me go,” the condemned woman sighed, “or I’ll have no choice but to end the world.”
Responses to her ultimatum were mixed. An anonymous laugh barked out over the sea of frayed coveralls and shock collars, over the empty, gray faces that had earned this prison its nickname. Officer Curdin spectated from the corner of the platform, leaning back against the steel armature and chewing on a ration cake. Near the front of the crowd stood the man whose jaw he’d cracked in half the week before, an inmate everybody called Scrimm, straining to hear and make any sense of the condemned’s last words.
“Listen!” she called out. “What were you before this? I mean, what is a ghost, really? Whatever happens next, ask yourself that.”
A few sneered or furrowed their brows or sighed long white breaths into the frigid air, but most, like Scrimm, remained stoic: trapped between sympathy for one more fellow inmate finally broken, and perverse envy for however much freedom her delusions offered. Curdin only chuckled and brushed away the crumbs.
“If all this ends, I don’t know what comes next,” she continued, twisting in her restraints to address the crowd, the guards, their stun batons, the trapdoor, and the inmates doggedly tying the knots and hauling up the weights. “Maybe it all disappears. Or it might become something else. I don’t know what. I only know it’s going to hurt like hell. Facing your baggage always does.”
“Don’t make this any harder,” the warden told her, tugging on his gloves, and Curdin knew the man’s mind: how much the entire staff was going to miss her brazen defiance, her weird little kindnesses to inmates and guards alike, and every other daily expression of whatever absurd hope had so armored her against every torment they’d devised. The charges were a formality. Everyone knew the only true capital offense here in Ghost City Prison was to earn the warden’s admiration.
“Okay then,” the condemned woman said. “Here’s the story. There used to be only one world, but people didn’t like it so much so they started building their own. Simulations — real to the people inside them — where they could write all their own rules, have and do anything they wanted. Eventually forget about the original world altogether.”
“What is this bullshit?” Curdin muttered.
SEA CHANGE is a fast, exciting read that highlights climate change instead of pandemic as its apocalypse generator. In 2022, GMOs were banned.
KRISTEN’S BOOK JUNGLE feels much the same.
If you like novels that focus on the planet with high-stakes drama, tons of suspense, plenty of action, and sparks of eco-friendly hints of espionage, take a chance to read SEA CHANGE today.
“A strong, striking look at a a possible future, and the courage that will allow us to survive it.”—Laura Anne Gilman, author of Heat of Briar and Soul of Fire
“SEA CHANGE is like liquid nitrogen ice cream—a chilling treat. Right next door to the future, filled with dark wit—a fine addition to Kress’s work.”—Greg Bear, author of Eon and Take Back the Sky
“Nancy Kress is one of the best science-fiction writers working today. Her use of science is tricky and thought-provoking, her command of fiction sharp and full of feeling.”—Kim Stanley Robinson, author of The Years of Rice and Salt
“Nobody is better at destroying the world—see one of my favorite novellas, the multi-award-winning AFTER THE FALL, BEFORE THE FALL, DURING THE FALL—but here Nancy Kress dives into the science of genetically modified plants and shows us how we just may need them to save the planet. And this brilliant, thoughtful story is also a page-turner! I don’t know about you, but a thriller about a fear-mongering, anti-science government and the smart, brave people resisting it was exactly the story I needed right now.”—Daryl Gregory, award-winning writer of Spoonbenders
“Kress brilliantly weaves together two halves of a bio-thriller about GMOs and climate change that blooms logically from our immediate past and into one possible catastrophic near future. What’s even more impressive is how she warns us about the dangers of GMOs on one hand, and teaches us about their wonderous advantages on the other. It’s science fiction and it’s not science fiction, and that’s what’s scary about this novella. Highly recommended.”—Patrick Swenson, author of The Ultra Thin Man
“This taut, suspenseful near-future ecothriller combines a frighteningly plausible ecological/economic collapse scenario with genuine human emotion. A winner!”—David D. Levine, author of Arabella of Mars
ASH & BOOKS delivers the first review of Jane Yolen’s forthcoming collection THE MIDNIGHT CIRCUS (not due until October, but available for pre-order from your favorite bookseller or direct from Tachyon and for reviewers via EDELWEISS and NETGALLEY).
A wonderful collection of short stories! Each one is it’s own self contained story that is just perfection. I really had a fun time reading them!
THE BIBLIOSANCTUM is excited about the book.
A collection of darkly weird and wonderful poems and tales, it’s due out later this fall and seems perfect for the Halloween season.
What was the inspiration for THE LAST TSAR’S DRAGONS? What were the steps you took to bring it from initial inspiration to the finished book?
THE LAST TSAR’S DRAGONS started life as a short story in The Dragon Book, a collection of short stories edited by Jack Dann and Gardner Dozois. It’s a fun collection with the likes of Dianna Wynne Jones and Gregory Maguire adding stories to the mix. We felt like we had more to tell, and pitched it to Tachyon as a novella. Expanding a short story is an interesting task. We added another viewpoint character and a small framing device while fleshing out the characters that were already in the story. I felt that by lengthening it, we were really able to explore some thematic elements—the corruptive nature of power, for one—that there just wasn’t room for in the shorter form.
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“Twenty-five years! Can it possibly be that long? I was involved with Tachyon Publications from its earliest years. Back then, the staff consisted of Jacob Weisman, his dog, and (I think) only one employee.
Jacob published my work in chapbook format. I wrote introductions to his more substantial books. Somewhere along the line, he started publishing my short story collections. Now, every so many years, he calls me up and asks, “Don’t you have enough short fiction for another book?” I pull up the files and count and, if the numbers come up short, write new material to cover the gap.
Somewhere along the line, our relationship became so close that I was invited to Jacob and Rina’s wedding. I saw them pledge their troth to each other with a modified version of the Green Lantern oath.
All that matters a great deal to me. Less so to you. To you, what matters is that all the while Tachyon has been carefully selecting books to publish, that all those books were worth publishing and most worth cherishing, that they’ve never stooped to putting out the merely popular over the worthwhile, that a quarter of a century after they began they’re still saving the world one book at a time.”
— Michael Swanwick
Tachyon tidbits featuring Ellen Datlow, John Picacio, Charlie Jane Anders, Kameron Hurley, Nina Kiriki Hoffman, Nancy Kress, Tim Powers, and Brandon Sanderson
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The latest reviews and mentions of Tachyon titles and authors from around the web.
LOCUS MAGAZINE announced the winners of their annual awards with Ellen Datlow nabbing the Best Editor and John Picacio for Best Artist. Check out LOCUS for the complete award list. Congratulations to all the winners.
Congratulations to Charlie Jane Anders (The City in the Middle of the Night) and Kameron Hurley (The Light Brigade) for making the 34th Arthur C. Clarke Award shortlist.
The shortlist for the 34th Arthur C. Clarke Award is:
- The City in the Middle of the Night – Charlie Jane Anders
- The Light Brigade – Kameron Hurley
- A Memory Called Empire – Arkady Martine
- The Old Drift – Namwali Serpell
- Cage of Souls – Adrian Tchaikovsky
- The Last Astronaut — David Wellington
GALAXY PRESS shared the news: Writers and Illustrators of the Future Announces a Combined Event with the 36th and 37th Annual Award-Winners in 2021. Nina Kiriki Hoffman, Nancy Kress, Tim Powers, and Brandon Sanderson number among the judges for the annual.
As the top names in the science fiction and fantasy world, Contest judges include Kevin J. Anderson, Doug Beason, Gregory Benford, Orson Scott Card, David Farland, Eric Flint, Brian Herbert, Nina Kiriki Hoffman, Nancy Kress, Katherine Kurtz, Todd McCaffrey, Rebecca Moesta, Larry Niven, Jody Lynn Nye, Nnedi Okorafor, Tim Powers, Kristine Kathryn Rusch, Brandon Sanderson, Robert J. Sawyer, Robert Silverberg, Dean Wesley Smith, and Sean Williams. Illustrator judges include Laura Freas Beraha, Echo and Lazarus Chernik, Ciruelo, Vincent Di Fate, Diane Dillon, Bob Eggleton, Craig Elliott, Larry Elmore, Val Lakey Lindahn, Stephan Martiniere, Gary Meyer, Mike Perkins, Sergey Poyarkov, Rob Prior, Dan dos Santos, Shaun Tan, and Stephen Youll.
Every quarter, three writers and three illustrators are selected by a panel of leading authors and artists of science fiction and fantasy. With no entry fee and judging done on an anonymous basis, the criterion is strictly merit. Beside first time publication, benefits include over $30,000 in cash prizes and royalties, a week-long workshop with top professionals of the genre as well as book signings, radio, and TV interviews organized by the Contest administrators to assist the winners in launching their careers
Catch the magnificent Nalo Hopkinson in the 2020 Virtual Summer Reading Series: Summer of Science Fiction & Fantasy
The acclaimed Nalo Hopkinson, author of FALLING IN LOVE WITH HOMINIDS, is participating in the 2020 Virtual Summer Reading Series: Summer of Science Fiction & Fantasy with a virtual reading on Tuesday, July 14, 9 EST/8 CST/6 PST. You’ll need to pre-register.
Readings include selections from recently published books, unpublished stories, or novels-in-progress. The featured reader also answers questions about writing, teaching, editing, and other topics.
The readings will stream live on YouTube.
About the Summer of Science Fiction & Fantasy Reading Series:
The Clarion West Summer Reading Series is sponsored by the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture, King County 4Culture, Amazon Literary Partners, the University Book Store, and the Seattle Public Library. If you are interested in helping to sponsor the summer reading series or sponsor the Write-a-thon, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rick Klaw birthday, blog birthday, Caitlín R. Kiernan, central station, daryl gregory, her smoke rose up forever, james tiptree jr, jill roberts, kage baker, lavie tidhar, r. b. lemberg, the four profound weaves, the hotel under the sand, the very best of caitlin r kiernan, we are all completely fine
Since joining Tachyon in 2002 as the managing editor, Jill Roberts has overseen the remaking of the press from one that originally published 2-3 titles a year and only sold to specialty bookstores into its present incarnation of 8-10 books a year and mainstream distribution. Tachyon titles under her watch have won Nebula, Hugo, World Fantasy, Shirley Jackson, Campbell, Neukom, Sturgeon, and Locus awards and routinely make “best of the year” lists. Among the numerous acclaimed titles Roberts oversaw include HER SMOKE ROSE UP FOREVER by James Tiptree Jr., THE EMPEROR’S SOUL by Brandon Sanderson, WE ARE ALL COMPLETELY FINE by Daryl Gregory, STEAMPUNK edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer, CENTRAL STATION by Lavie Tidhar, THE HOTEL UNDER THE SAND by Kage Baker, THE FREEZE-FRAME REVOLUTION by Peter Watts, THE VERY BEST OF CAITLÍN R. KIERNAN, and THE FOUR PROFOUND WEAVES by R. B. Lemberg.
Prior to Tachyon, Roberts worked within the gaming, fashion, and health industries. She has been a columnist for Books to Watch Out For and the Thirteenth Moon, as well as a consulting editor at the nonprofit writing program Streetside Stories.
Everyone at Tachyon wishes the amazing Jill a happy birthday. And not just because we’re scared of her.
Formerly a practicing M.D and faculty member at the University of California in San Francisco, Michael Blumlein’s modest, yet impactful output included The Movement Of Mountains (1987), The Healer (2005), THE ROBERTS (2011), and Longer (2019). His novel X,Y (1993) was the basis for the 2004 movie of the same name.
Many of his short stories and essays have been collected in the Readercon Award winner and World Fantasy Award nominated The Brains of Rats (1990), What the Doctor Ordered (2013), All I Ever Dreamed (2018), and Thoreau’s Microscope (2018). Blumlein also wrote the screenplay for the acclaimed short film Decodings (1988).
The insightful, witty, and talent Micheal is missed by all who knew him.
Author of the World Fantasy and Shirley Jackson Award winning WE ARE ALL COMPLETELY FINE (2014), Daryl Gregory also wrote the Crawford award winning novel Pandemonium (2008), The Devil’s Alphabet (2009), Raising Stony Mayhall (2011), Afterparty (2014), Harrison Squared (2015) (the young adult prequel to WE ARE ALL COMPLETELY FINE), Spoonbenders (2017), and Nine Last Days on Planet Earth (2018).
Gregory has written several comics and graphic novels including Legenderry: Green Hornet, Secret Battles of Genghis Khan, Dracula: Company of Monsters, and an acclaimed run on Planet of the Apes. Many of his stories were collected in Unpossible and Other Stories (2011).
All of us at Tachyon wish the magnificent Daryl an extraordinary birthday. Not matter how terrible things are, we hope it all stays fine.