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Welcome to another Author Interview Special Edition.  This one is to celebrate a new book by Judith Tarr.  It has been four years since Judith’s last novel and much of the world has been anxiously awaiting a new release.  It is also a special book, as it may not have been seen had it not been for a very successful Kickstarter campaign.

In Judith’s words:

Living in Threes, a brand-new YA fantasy/science fiction/historical, is coming from Book View Cafe on November 20th. It’s one of my projects that my agents loved but could not sell. Editors would want to buy it but marketing couldn’t figure out where to put it.

I ran a Kickstarter to finance the revision, which drew a round 256 backers and a lot of enthusiasm. It’s been extensively revised, edited, designed and formatted by the Book View crew, and we’re all excited to see it finally out in the world. Ebook only for now, but print edition eventually, we hope.

I am also celebrating by having one of the legends of fantasy agree to this interview:

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I have the absolute pleasure of introducing Norman Wilson of Melange Publishing as the newest reader to join my review club. Norman is a published author of the Shamanic Mysteriesand, and is also the contact point for a number of authors I have now interviewed.

At some stage during our email conversations, Norman let me know he was reading my book Long Lost Song. With pride, I can now present to you his review:

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Kurt Vonnegut: Letters

Kurt Vonnegut (edited and with an introduction by Dan Wakefield)
Random House Publishing Group
      Delacorte Press

Pub Date                Oct 30 2012

Description
This extraordinary collection of personal correspondence has all the hallmarks of Kurt Vonnegut’s fiction. Written over a sixty-year period, these letters, the vast majority of them never before published, are funny, moving, and full of the same uncanny wisdom that has endeared his work to readers worldwide.Included in this comprehensive volume: the letter a twenty-two-year-old Vonnegut wrote home immediately upon being freed from a German POW camp, recounting the ghastly firebombing of Dresden that would be the subject of his masterpiece Slaughterhouse-Five;wry dispatches from Vonnegut’s years as a struggling writer slowly finding an audience and then dealing with sudden international fame in middle age; righteously angry letters of protest to local school boards that tried to ban his work; intimate remembrances penned to high school classmates, fellow veterans, friends, and family; and letters of commiseration and encouragement to such contemporaries as Gail Godwin, G�nter Grass, and Bernard Malamud.

Embers at Galdrilene has undergone a huge transformation! It now sports a beautifully  redesigned front cover, spine and back cover. It also has an awesome custom designed interior and has been professionally edited. All thanks to the incredible team at Blue Harvest Creative. And as an added bonus, when you read the final page of Embers at Galdrilene, you’ll get an exciting sneak peek for the prologue Tears of War, the second book in the Dragon’s Call series.

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Embers at Galdrilene has undergone a huge transformation! It now sports a beautifully  redesigned front cover, spine and back cover. It also has an awesome custom designed interior and has been professionally edited. All thanks to the incredible team at Blue Harvest Creative. And as an added bonus, when you read the final page of Embers at Galdrilene, you’ll get an exciting sneak peek for the prologue Tears of War, the second book in the Dragon’s Call series.

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Tony Shillitoe burst onto the Australian fantasy scene with the Andrakis Trilogy beginning in 1992.  As the story, he was convinced by a friend to send a sample to a publisher even though he had only about 10 chapters written.  He didn’t hold much hope for it being seen, as he says that only about 0.1% of manuscripts get published.  Much to his surprise his was accepted.  A little bit of amazement and a lot of shock and Tony had himself a trilogy.

He then went on to write ‘The Last Wizard’, which was shortlisted for the Aurealis Award for best fantasy novel.  It would then be some 7 years before he would return to fantasy with the Ashuak Chronicles.  In 2006 Shillitoe released the first novel in a new fantasy series, the Dreaming in Amber quartet.

But since then he has been very quiet.  The great news is that there is something new coming.  Something very new, and I cannot wait for it.  Until then Tony agreed to do this little interview with me.

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Charity Parkerson scares me with her brand and style of writing.  The things she writes, well, it curls my toes.  From the sounds of it, it curls her toes as well.  Wow, this stuff is hot.  This interview has been sitting with me for a while now, but Charity has not nagged me at all about it.  (I think she’s probably too busy writing that next steamy scene.)

Not only is Charity good and prolific, she also hosts a internet show called the ‘Melissa Craig & Charity Parkerson Podcast’ and I’m pretty sure that gets out of control very easily for these two fine ladies.  Her blog also has an over 18 warning as you enter it.  Be careful!!

Here’s Charity:

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I have only met Trent recently through a mutual friend of Martin Reaves.  Martin has done an interview with me and mentioned Trent Zelazny.  So I did a little investigating and found this Trent Zelazny, only to be amazed by what I found.

Trent is son of Roger Zelazny.  For me this was a bit of a big deal, as I enjoyed the Amber Chronicles.  What was more amazing, to me, was the sheer fact that Trent had lived through the loss of his girlfriend, which Trent will talk about more later.

I sent Trent my standard questions, but with the proviso that I could ask him some tougher questions (of which you will see later).  trent was very open about his past and did not knock back any of my questions, answering them overnight.

I will add to this before I let Trent have a go.  There are some great authors out there talking about Trent and how good he is.  To drop just two names here – Neil Gaiman and Joe R. Lansdale.

A little warning as well.  This post is over 3,500 words long, but more than worth the effort.

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What can be said about K. W. Jeter.  He blew me away in the 80’s and through the 90’s with some of the best science fiction/cyperpunk/steampuck that I have read.  I waited for each new Jeter book, and was rewarded with a book I knew I would enjoy.  He wrote sequels to Blade Runner, which were brilliant.  Then a little Star Trek and Star Wars.  But then he stopped writing – just literally disappeared.

There was a gap of some ten years before we saw a new release with ‘The Kingdom of Shadows’.  There is even a sequel of Infernal Devices coming up, but I’ll let K. W. mention that.

K. W. blew me away by agreeing do to an interview.  It did not take me long to shoot some questions through.  I think it took him shorter to return them to me.

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Is there anyone who has helped or mentored you in your writing career? If so, who?

Now this is a fertile field for study.   I would lump these folks into three categories.

First, I would like to comment on those folks who helped me by virtue of how I fell in love with their work.  I have mentioned in other places that my love of SF started in childhood.  I suspect that is one reason my approach to it is a very visual one.  I shivered as I watched Johnny Quest evade the howling invisible monster, or Tobor the Eigthman, Astroboy and Marineboy battle futuristic enemies.  I watched Fireball 5 hurtle down the skids to her missions in space.  Anime inspired me because where the American SF material was simplistic and exterior driven, the Japanese anime characters had family conflicts, personal tragedy and emotional turmoil.  The young officer might not worship his “Captain Kirk” but rather as Derek Wildstar did, might reject Captain Argo’s authority.  A whole emotional level of loss, longing and love existed as subtext largely, if not entirely, absent from the American material.

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