Posts Tagged With: SciFi

Books: Sci-Fi and Fantasy for the Winter

Winter Reads

Thanksgiving is officially over (it went very well, thank you!) and I finished putting up my Christmas things on Sunday.  It’s cold here – in the 40s – and I’m hoping it quits soon because I own, like, 2 sweaters that are actually warm and weren’t bought for pretty.  Next weekend is when all the Christmas events start happening in my town.

There’s no way it will snow here, though.  So in the absence of actual snow, I need literary snow.  And for some reason, all my favorite winter books have a fantastical component.  Here are three that you should read, if you like this sort of thing:

Landline: A Novel, by Rainbow Rowell: Georgie McCool has always put her career as a scriptwriter front and center, and her husband Neil has picked up the slack.  When she and best friend Seth have the chance to pitch the script of their lifetime, if they can write it in five days, Georgie knows Neil will be upset.  But he’ll probably roll with Georgie’s assessment that they can’t bring the girls to his family’s house for Christmas like they planned.  Georgie didn’t forsee that Neil would be more than pissed.  He takes the girls to his parent’s house, leaves Georgie in California, and then is strangely unavailable.  Frantic, Georgie calls Neil from an old rotary phone in her bedroom to find that she’s dialed 20 years in the past.  But can she save her marriage from decades away?

Wintersmith (Tiffany Aching), by Terry Pratchett: Tiffany Aching accidentally joins the dark mummer’s dance, and then has to contend with Jack Frost, who thinks she’s his new girlfriend.  Embarrassing snowflakes in Tiffany’s shape, a cornucopia spilling out all sorts of things you just don’t want, the Nac Mac Feegles, and relations with the human boy Tiffany has a thing with are just some of the problems she faces.  But now that Tiffany has dethroned the goddess of spring, will Summer ever come again?

The Left Hand of Darkness, by Ursula K. LeGuin: Genly Ai has agreed to go as an emissary to the planet deemed Winter to see if he can get them to join the ecumenical society of planets.  It is first contact, and Genly is more than aware that he could be killed or imprisoned.  Winter is a world where most humans there are genderless until they mate, and over the course of a lifetime can be both male and female.  The planet is as unforgiving as it’s icy landscape, with a strange code of behavior called shifgrethor, and Genly is getting nowhere with his quest.  He places his trust in Prime Minister Estraven, who is then accused of treason and cast out of the kingdom.  But Genly and Estraven meet again in a work camp on the outskirts of civilization, and together they undertake a perilous journey over icy wastelands so that they can be free.

 

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Fantasy Magazines

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This trying to be a writer stuff is so odd sometimes.  I go through cycles of things.  Like, the last month has been a month of rejection after rejection as all my stories came back with a “no, thank you.”  I like to think that I get better at handling this with time, but when they all pile up into a mass… And they inevitably all pile up that way, no matter how spaced out I send them.  I have packaged them all up again, given them a polish, and sent them back out.  Hopefully this time (my fingers are crossed) the news will be better.

Being a fantasy writer isn’t easy.  And it’s not just the writing part (although that’s some of it.  Writing is always hard).  It’s also the fact that a lot of journals don’t take fantasy or speculative things.  I have spent hours upon hours researching places to send my work to.  I thought it might be helpful to others if I threw down a master post of journals that take this sort of thing, so you can benefit from all the free time I seem to have.  Not all of them accept submissions all of the time, so you will still need to keep your ear to the ground.  The other thing I’ve found handy is this site: http://writingcareer.com/.  They have a Tumblr blog I can follow, and fancy reminders just show up in my feed.  They advertise for all genres, but they definitely cover fantasy too.

The list I put together is of stuff that looked good for my own writing.  I know there are other Canadian magazines and Aussie magazines out there (among others), but they don’t all want my American stuff.  Nor do places who print mostly horror. I also didn’t include any contests, no matter how prestigious, that required an entry fee.  Just say no, kids.  The chances of winning are so tiny; why pay for someone to reject your story when you can get that service absolutely free?

Now on to the list of Journals:

Paying Professional Rates:

Paying Well:

Paying Not a Lot:

Paying Nothing/Unknown:

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