Coming of age as an individualist: Author Dave Freer’s Prometheus interview, part 2

Here is the second part of the Prometheus interview with Australian/Tasmanian author Dave Freer, the 2023 Prometheus winner for Best Novel for Cloud-Castles.

Author Dave Freer at his home desk in Tasmania Photo courtesy of author

Q: How did you first get interested in science fiction/fantasy?

A: I was born into it, you might say. No, not in a hut hopping the Taiga on a solitary chicken-leg as might seem likely, or even half way up a space-elevator, hanging between heaven and earth. Into a family where reading sf and fantasy were a norm.

If you think there to be nothing unusual about this, it is plain you know little of the country and times of my birth.

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The Prometheus interview with Dave Freer, the 2023 Best Novel winner for Cloud-Castles

“The outback of Australia was a very individualist place. So: I had my model.” – Dave Freer

Australian writer Dave Freer Photo courtesy of author

Dave Freer’s Cloud-Castlesthe 2023 Prometheus Best Novel winner, offers a zestful and often funny coming-of-age adventure set on diverse habitats floating above a gas-giant planet.

 

The Australian author, who lives in Tasmania, considers himself “mostly a rational anarchist” in the tradition of Robert Heinlein. Freer was interviewed by email by Michael Grossberg, a Prometheus Blog editor.

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A sense of wonder: The Gallagher Interview (part 3), about Heinlein, Niven, Bujold and other sf authors, favorite novels, and what he thinks of awards

So far, in the first two parts of his Prometheus-blog interview, SF writer Karl K. Gallagher has answered questions about his own novels. Now, in the wide-ranging conclusion, the focus shifts to other authors and his favorite works – including the “sense of wonder” and “sense of freedom” that he gets from his favorite pro-liberty sf novels.

Q: Which authors in particular have influenced you most as a writer – whether in terms of their style, themes or spirit?

Robert Heinlein, a drawing (Creative Commons license)

A: Robert Heinlein, for ideals and heroic characters.

Larry Niven, for ideas driving stories.

Lois McMaster Bujold, for looking at what a change will do to people and how they’ll react.

Continue reading A sense of wonder: The Gallagher Interview (part 3), about Heinlein, Niven, Bujold and other sf authors, favorite novels, and what he thinks of awards

The Karl Gallagher interview, part two: On the pleasures of writing, challenges of series, and what’s next in his Fall of the Censor series

Here is the second part of the Prometheus-blog interview with sf writer Karl K. Gallagher.

A 2022 Best Novel finalist for his Fall of the Censor novels Between Home and Ruin and Seize What’s Held Dear, Gallagher is in the midst of completing his projected nine-volume Censor series.

His fourth novel in the series, Captain Trader Helmsman Spy, was  published in May.

Continue reading The Karl Gallagher interview, part two: On the pleasures of writing, challenges of series, and what’s next in his Fall of the Censor series

Interview: Frequent Prometheus-finalist Karl K. Gallagher on sf, growing up, and the roots of his Fall of the Censor series

SF author Karl K. Gallagher is in the midst of writing his ambitious multi-volume Fall of the Censor series, an interstellar saga set in the distant future.

The series, popular with libertarian sf fans, now includes four published novels, two of which became 2022 Best Novel finalists: Between Home and Ruin and Seize What’s Held Dear.

Author Karl K. Gallagher (Creative Commons license)

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The John Christmas interview, part 3: Good guys, bad guys, Cold War politics, fiction writing and how Putin has delayed his next novel

KGB Banker, a contemporary financial-political thriller co-written by author and LFS Best Novel finalist judge John Christmas, has recently been recognized by the Best Thrillers website as the “Best Conspiracy Thriller of 2022.”
Meanwhile, Christmas’ first novel was Democracy Society, a futuristic and satiric libertarian novel about fighting corrupt government.

John Christmas (Photo courtesy of author)

In the third and final part of his Prometheus Blog interview, Christmas discusses literary styles, Cold War politics, what kind of “good guys” and “bad guys” he likes to create as characters, why he became a novelist and what he plans to write next.
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John Christmas interview, part two: What the novelist and awards judge looks for in Prometheus nominees and what he’s learned about writing fiction

LFS member John Christmas, a Prometheus Best Novel judge for the past decade, has written and published two novels.

Most recently, Christmas co-wrote KGB Banker, a contemporary political thriller recently recognized by Best Thrillers as the “Best Conspiracy Thriller of 2022.”
In this second part of his Prometheus Blog interview, Christmas discusses what he looks for in judging Prometheus nominees, and shares more about what he’s learned about writing fiction and appreciating good fiction.

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Interview: Best Novel judge John Christmas on favorite Prometheus winners, lessons learned about writing fiction from judging the awards

“My experience as a writer helps me as a judge. And, my experience as a judge helps me as a writer.” – John Christmas

LFS member John Christmas, a published novelist, has served as a Prometheus Best Novel judge for about a decade now.

Author, LFS judge John Christmas Photo courtesy of Christmas

Christmas co-wrote KGB Banker, a contemporary political thriller recently recognized by Best Thrillers as the “Best Conspiracy Thriller of 2022.”

Christmas’s first novel was Democracy Society, a futuristic libertarian novel about fighting a corrupt government.

In this interview, Christmas discusses some of his favorite Prometheus-winning novels, how his creative writing has helped him be a better awards judge, and how serving as a Best Novel judge has benefited him as a writer.

The Christmas interview also seems timely in how it sheds light on the awards-judging process, since the Best Novel finalist judging committee is currently reading and discussing more than a dozen nominees and candidates for nomination in the final month or two before voting to select the annual slate of finalists.

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The Prometheus interview, part 3, with Wil McCarthy: On his first novel Antediluvian and his cool sci-fi portrait pics

Here is the third and final part of the Prometheus interview with Wil McCarthy, the 2022 Prometheus Best Novel winner for Rich Man’s Sky.

Will McCarthy (Photo courtesy of Baen Books)


Q: Talk about the impetus for your first novel Antediluvian, once you returned from your recent writing hiatus. I recently read and enjoyed it as an ingenious twist on the standard time-travel novel, offering a genetic-memory approach to experiencing what really might have happened millennia ago to our “cave man” ancestors. Your novel plausibly reimagines key events – like the massive flooding 12,000 to 14,000 years ago that’s the reality behind the story of Noah’s Ark – that gave rise through generations of oral history to our inherited (and likely highly distorted) mythologies about ancient history.

Continue reading The Prometheus interview, part 3, with Wil McCarthy: On his first novel Antediluvian and his cool sci-fi portrait pics

The Prometheus interview with Wil McCarthy, part 2: On temptations of power, libertarianism, his favorite Prometheus authors and why he reads Reason every day

Here is the second part of the Prometheus Blog interview with Wil McCarthy, the 2022 Best Novel winner for Rich Man’s Sky.

SF author Will McCarthy in command of some sort of starship (Photo: Baen Books)

Q: Were you aware of the Prometheus Awards before receiving your first Best Novel nomination this past year?

A: I have been aware of the award, yes.  I used to think of it as a purely political award, which I think perhaps it was in the early days.  But when you see it going to people like Cory Doctorow (Little Brother) and Charles Stross (Glasshouse) — both excellent, thoughtful writers, and clearly not Libertarians in any traditional American sense — I think it’s easier to see it as a genuine literary prize that rewards great ideas and great storytelling.

Continue reading The Prometheus interview with Wil McCarthy, part 2: On temptations of power, libertarianism, his favorite Prometheus authors and why he reads Reason every day