Fiction & Fact:
Rick Wilber & Alan Smale:
On a series of hikes near Taos, New Mexico, during the Rio Hondo writer’s workshop run by Walter Jon Williams, Alan Smale and Rick Wilber conjured up a story that combines their two passions—ancient history and baseball. Alan’s Clash of Eagles novels (Del Rey Books) depict a Roman invasion of North America at the height of the Mississippian Culture, and Rick has published nearly two dozen science fiction or fantasy stories—many of them in this magazine—that prominently feature baseball in the storytelling. Perhaps it was the bracing mountain air that persuaded these two Sidewise Award-winning authors that a 1940s barnstorming baseball team might travel back in time and wind up fighting for their lives in a sports arena of a very different kind.
David Gerrold & Ctein:
David Gerrold has been writing professionally for half a century. He created the tribbles for Star Trek and the Sleestaks for Land of the Lost. His most famous novel is The Man Who Folded Himself. His semi-autobiographical tale of his son’s adoption, “The Martian Child,” won both the Hugo and the Nebula awards and was the basis for the 2007 movie starring John Cusack and Amanda Peet. Ctein and David met through the machinations of John and Bjo Trimble’s Save Star Trek campaign in 1968 and have been friends ever since—although this is the first time they’ve written a story together. An active member of the science fiction community for almost half a century, Ctein is the coauthor (with John Sandford) of the New York Times bestselling science fiction thriller, Saturn Run. He is also the author of several books on photographic techniques as well as many hundreds of articles and columns on photography, computers, and other nonessentials. Ctein’s photographic work can be seen at http://ctein.com. David and Ctein’s thrilling story about the struggle to survive during the onslaught of an overwhelming force of nature enthralls from beginning to end.
Sue Burke’s first novel, Semiosis, came out from Tor in February. A short story set in the book’s universe, “Spiders,” appeared in our March 2008 issue. Sue tells us, “The road to publication is paved with patience and persistence, and then more patience and persistence.” After seventeen years in Madrid, Spain, Sue and her husband relocated to Chicago last year. When she isn’t writing, reading, or cooking, Sue translates Spanish authors into English. Recent works have appeared in Supersonic Magazine. Of her latest tale for Asimov’s, she says, “Unlike some of my stories, ‘Life From the Sky’ is set in the here and now, which has as many dysfunctions as the average science fictional future.”
Nancy Kress is the multiple-award-winning author of over two dozen novels and a hundred short stories. Her most recent work is the second book of the Yesterday’s Kin series, If Tomorrow Comes (Tor, March 2018). “Cost of Doing Business” grew from the 2016 Year Without a Winter Conference in Arizona, but Nancy had been thinking about fossil fuels for a long time. When she was in grade school, more decades ago than she cares to admit, teachers were warning that oil reserves would someday run out. They didn’t warn, back then, about climate change. They did say that drastic alterations in our society would be necessary—although not as drastic or as planned as in this story.
Cadwell Turnbull is a recent graduate from the North Carolina State University’s Creative Writing MFA in Fiction and English MA in Linguistics. His short fiction can be found at Lightspeed, Nightmare, and right here at Asimov’s. Cadwell is currently at work on a novel set in near-future U.S. Virgin Islands after an alien occupation. His latest tale features a Caribbean that—though similar to ours—exists elsewhere in time and space.
Paul Park is the author of twelve novels and two collections of stories. He lives in Massachusetts and teaches at Williams College. Paul’s latest tale shows us the possible consequences of “creative nonfiction.”
Peter Wood, an attorney in Raleigh, North Carolina, hopes that in the far future we have moved past business retreats and conferences. If not, the poor souls conducting team building exercises on an interstellar ship might actually welcome a little change of pace.
After twenty years in the game industry, working on blockbusters such as Half-Life and Dota 2, Marc Laidlaw recently retired and has returned to writing fiction. A collection of fifty-one stories written over four decades, 400 Boys and 50 More, is currently available on Kindle. His latest book, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (Now with Extra Monsters) has been released to great reviews.
Jane Lindskold tells us, “After the universe’s most inept delivery person left Valentine’s Day flowers meant for me at the same wrong house three times, and after I learned that my sister’s flowers arrived without a note, I found myself wondering what happened to the occupants when those unexpected flowers continuously showed up.” Jane has published around seventy short stories and over twenty-five novels. She likes writing different things, so these works include urban fantasy (Changer), imaginary world fantasy (the Firekeeper Saga), weird Chinese mythic historical mah-jongg fantasy (the Breaking the Wall series), and space opera (the Artemis Awakening series). The author’s latest novel is the surreal Asphodel. You can learn more about her works at www.janelindskold.com.
As Director of Research and Development for Deep Space Industries (a company devoted to asteroid mining and creating new technologies), Stephen Covey’s day job is “turning science fiction into science fact.” In other words, he gets to play with asteroid dirt all day. Having visited Stephen’s mad scientist laboratory in Orlando, Sandra McDonald envisions a future where space miners have soared into the skies while Florida has succumbed to rising oceans. This story about a woman seeking a long-lost connection to her past is their latest collaboration.
Jay Cole is senior advisor to the president and an adjunct faculty member at West Virginia University. His scholarly interests include science policy, the history of science, and the relationship between science fiction and public opinion. During the fall 2016 semester, Jay channeled his life-long love of science fiction, and Isaac Asimov in particular, into creating and teaching an honors course on Asimov. Jay’s guest editorial describes his experience and makes a case for teaching about Asimov’s work as an antidote to a “post-truth” era of “alternative facts.”
Bruce Boston is the author of more than fifty books and chapbooks, including the dystopian SF novel The Guardener’s Tale. His poems and stories have appeared in hundreds of publications and have received the Bram Stoker Award, the Asimov’s Readers Award, a Pushcart Prize, and the Rhysling and Grandmaster Awards of the Science Fiction Poetry Association. For more info, please visit http://bruceboston.com/.
Robert Borski’s writing has appeared in Asimov’s, F&SF, Strange Horizons, and way back in July 1975, the pages of this magazine. Blood Wallah, a collection of his better poems, remains available from Dark Regions Press. A self-described late-blooming child prodigy, he continues to live in Stevens Point, Wisconsin, where he works for a local university.
Ken Poyner’s latest collection of short, wiry fiction, “Constant Animals”, and his latest collections of poetry—”Victims of a Failed Civics” and “The Book of Robot”—can be obtained from Barking Moose Press, at www.barkingmoosepress.com, or Amazon at www.amazon.com, or Sundial Books at www.sundialbooks.net. He often serves as strange, bewildering eye-candy at his wife’s power lifting affairs. His poetry of late has been sunning in “Analog,” “Asimov’s,” “Poet Lore,” “The Kentucky Review”; and his fiction has yowled in “Spank the Carp,” “Red Truck,” “Café Irreal,” “Bellows American Review.” His personal web can be found at www.kpoyner.com.
Jane Yolen, often called "the Hans Christian Andersen of America," is the author of over 360 books, including OWL MOON, THE DEVIL'S ARITHMETIC, SISTER EMILY'S LIGHTSHIP, and HOW DO DINOSAURS SAY GOODNIGHT. The books range from rhymed picture books and baby board books, through middle grade fiction, poetry collections, nonfiction, and up to novels and story collections for young adults and adults.. Her books, stories, and poems have won an assortment of awards--two Nebulas, a World Fantasy Award, a Caldecott Medal, the Golden Kite Award, three Mythopoeic awards, two Christopher Medals, a nomination for the National Book Award, the Rysling Award, and the Jewish Book Award, among many others. She was the first woman to give the St Andrews University’s Andrew Lang lecture since the lecture series was started in 1927. She was also the first writer to win the the Arts and Humanities award given by the New England Public Radio. A past president of SFWA, she is a World Fantasy Grand Master and a Science Fiction Poetry Association Grand Master. Six colleges and universities have given her honorary doctorates. Also worthy of note, her Skylark Award--given by NESFA, the New England Science Fiction Association, set her good coat on fire. If you need to know more about her, visit her website at: www.janeyolen.com.
John Richard Trtek trained to be an astrophysicist, but in graduate school decided he lacked the temperament and abilities for research. Returning to his native Oregon, he instead pursued a career as a high school physics teacher. An ancient graduate of Clarion West from 1987, he has spent retirement engaged in volunteer work and once again writing in earnest. He currently lives in Portland with his wife Ellen and two cats.