Having just returned from World Con, I’ve been thinking a lot about the nature of writing as a career, what it takes to create one, build one, sustain one.
One cannot attend an event like World Con (or World Fantasy, for that matter) and not find that one is up to one’s waggling fanboy eyebrows in the likes of George R.R. Martin, John Scalzi, Robert Silverberg, Ellen Datlow, and many other luminaries of the speculative fiction field.
I used theWesleyan Anthology of Science Fiction for my university SF literature class in the spring, and I found it to be an amazing anthology, filled with some of the greatest stories from Hawthorne’s “Rappaccini’s Daughter” in the 1840s up to Ted Chiang’s amazing story “Exhalation.” I joked to friends that I should have brought the anthology with me and enacted a scavenger hunt for autographs, because practically every author who is still among the living in that anthology was attending World Con.
But one cannot rub elbows with brilliance and talent, and not wonder how they got there, not wonder how to get there oneself. There’s nothing quite like hanging out with a bunch of best-sellers, Hugo and Nebula winners to stoke artistic insecurities. “Oh, god, I’ll never be able to write like George R. R. Martin!”
Then I remembered that I have a wealth of that information already available right here. Several years ago, I began an author interview series that led to some fascinating conversations with authors I have long admired. So I thought, let’s reprint those and let other writers who weren’t around these parts in 2008 perhaps gain some insights.
So let it be written, so let it be done.
Starting this week, I’ll be reprinting some of those old interviews. We’ll begin with the highlights and see what folks have to say. If time permits, we might even work in some fresh interviews.