Tanith Lee Was An Indispensible Fantasy Author

Tanith Lee, who died on Sunday, was one of the most prolific and influential authors of fantasy and horror. Everyone seems to know her for something different. Some people are obsessed with The Silver Metal Lover, while others devoured her fantasy series. And then there are the Blake’s 7 episodes. She left a huge… » 5/26/15 7:12pm Yesterday 7:12pm

DC and Star Wars: Two Very Different Approaches To Sprawling Backstories

Massive continuities are a blessing and a curse for the epic franchises that dominate popular culture. There’s a rich lore to draw on, but how do you keep the complicated backstories understandable to newcomers? DC Comics and Star Wars have taken very different approaches, that illuminate the importance of the past in… » 5/26/15 8:00am Yesterday 8:00am

How To Raise The Stakes In Your Story Without Wrecking Your Characters

The best science fiction and fantasy stories are impossible to tear yourself away from — and often, that thrilling sense of momentum comes from the sense that the danger to the world keeps getting bigger and scarier. But how do you raise the stakes without sacrificing your characters? » 5/19/15 3:38pm 5/19/15 3:38pm

The City Is a Crossroads: Daniel José Older on Protest Art and Urban Lit

This week, Gawker Review of Books is running interviews with three authors from the world of speculative fiction, discussing their work and their place within the evolving genre. Our final interview is with Daniel José Older, author of the Bone Street Rumba urban fantasy series, which debuted in January with the… » 5/16/15 2:30pm 5/16/15 2:30pm

Which Great Author Do You Re-Read, A Single Page At A Time?

Some authors are so great, you re-read their books from cover to cover, every few years. But then there are the authors that pack such a great punch, you just want to read a page or two, when you need to wake your brain up or remind yourself of a great scene. Which author do you just re-read a single page of,… » 5/15/15 2:47pm 5/15/15 2:47pm

Here's One Brilliant Recipe For A Story That Will Kick Anyone's Ass

There’s no one secret formula for a great story, even if Pixar has its rules and other people have their own ideas. There are as many great shapes for a story to take as there are stories. But Chuck Wendig, author of the Blackbirds series, has a pretty great example of how to structure a kick-ass story. » 5/05/15 2:00pm 5/05/15 2:00pm

The Smithsonian Museum Has An Early Draft Of Arthur C. Clarke's 2001

The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum’s Udvar-Hazy Center recently received a treasure trove: 85 cubic feet of Arthur C. Clarke’s papers, shipped from his home in Sri Lanka. Including a high-school notebook, where the young Clarke rated the science fiction stories he read. And an early draft of Clarke’s 2001:… » 4/30/15 7:41pm 4/30/15 7:41pm

Stop Using These Overused Short Story Titles!

Clarkesworld Magazine has received 50,000 short fiction submissions. To celebrate, editor Neil Clarke posted a list of the most common short story titles, based on analyzing his submissions. Including “Dust,” “Home,” “The Gift,” “Hunger,” and “Monsters.” And he also put all 50,000 titles into Wordle, resulting in the… » 4/21/15 10:00pm 4/21/15 10:00pm