Wednesday, August 26, 2009

S. M. Stirling Interview II

We have another interview with S. M. Stirling today (the first interview). Steve was nice enough to take time away from writing to answer more questions.

Why should readers buy your next novel, The Sword of the Lady?

-- it's a damned good story, if I say so myself. Kilts, swords, Moorish corsairs, Vikings who say "ayuh", Cheesehead cavalry, Sindarin-speaking girls with eyepatches, romance and young love... what's not to like?

According to your website ( you are working on three more Emberverse novels after The Sword of the Lady. Without giving away too many details, can you give readers an idea how much time elapses between them?

-- THE HIGH KING OF MONTIVAL starts directly after THE SWORD OF THE LADY; I'm working on it now. THE TEARS OF THE SUN and THE GIVEN SACRIFICE take place a bit later.

What other stories (long and short) are you working on right now?

-- there's A TAINT IN THE BLOOD and its two sequels, and I'm doing a novella.

Taint in the Blood is classified by some as an urban fantasy novel. Would you put the same label on it? Is this your first time writing in this genre?

-- first time at novel length. It's "urban" in that it's set in our time and world, more or less -- it starts in Santa Fe, NM, in fact. There's an element that could be either fantasy or science fiction.

Lately you’ve given readers sample chapters that end up revealing nearly half of the book for free. Have you noticed any change in sales by doing this? Do you think a free e-book would boost sales?

-- well, I've been doing that for some time now, and it doesn't seem to hurt. Quite the contrary. I think there are few people who'll read half a book and then refuse to shell out for the rest.

Changing gears a little, can you name one author you enjoy reading but feel is under appreciated or undiscovered?

-- errrr... a couple. Walter John Williams? John Miller? Melinda Snodgrass? and that doesn't exhaust the list by any means.

In the past you’ve stated that you love reading and researching history. Is there a particular period or topic that you enjoy more than others?

-- it varies. I like the Early Modern period and the Edwardian era, but I range around widely.

What's the simplest thing you never learned to do?

-- not talk.

What accomplishment are you most proud of?

-- writing!

What keeps you up at night?

-- habit. I have to be careful or I work all night and go to sleep at dawn; a habit I share with Winston Churchill and Mao.

Thank you again Steve for allowing me to bother you yet again with pesky questions. Make sure you check out his next book, The Sword of the Lady (review here), due out today and keep an eye out for his urban fantasy, A Taint in the Blood, due out next year.

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