Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Fantasy and Ghosts, Fantasy Movie Trivia, More or Less Science in Sci-Fi, Movie Reviews – Automata and Stonehearst Asylum, and Ninja News

Today I welcome authors David Powers King and Michael Jensen!

Fantasy and Ghosts: Combining Our Favorite Genres

Hello everyone, and thank you Alex for letting us “possess” your blog for a moment.

The top question we get asked is “Where did you come up with the idea for Woven?” It started as a dream Michael had years ago, getting crushed by a tree and becoming a ghost. When he shared this idea with me, I caught his vision right awake and asked if we could write a story together.

But we needed more than one idea. Thankfully we’re both super nerdy and had a wealth of inspiration behind us with such favorite movies/books like Stardust, Ghostbusters, The Princess Bride, Lord of the Rings, and then some, like one of my favorite ghost novels When Marnie Was There (btw, Studio Ghibli made a movie of it—geeking out—release it in the US already!).

We had to go even deeper than what we knew, so Michael and I researched everything we could find about fantasy stories that feature ghosts. We truly wanted to create something special that we had never experienced before, which manifested as an unlikely pair who set out on a journey to thwart death itself—besides playing a game of chess with him, of course (he cheats anyway).

If you’re writing, don’t just read/watch the latest, most popular story today and start writing in that genre. Read up on all you can find in that genre. Many gems and much inspiration awaits.

Mind your eggs, watch your threads, and get yourself Woven. It’s now available at any major bookseller. Thank you again for having us, Alex! You’re the best Ninja Captain ever.

Find David – Blog - Twitter - Goodreads
Find Michael – Facebook - Goodreads
Find Woven at Website - Amazon - Barnes and Noble - iTunes

Movie reviews

Automata
Antonio Banderas is an insurance agent investigating robots altering themselves and discovers a whole lot more.
You’ll see bits of Blade Runner and I Robot in this film. It’s a dystopian future and the outlook isn’t good.
Banderas is good in his role, but Melanie Griffin an odd choice in her part.
It all meshed together to make an interesting yet not great science fiction story.
Not quite recommended.

Stonehearst Asylum
A medical school graduate starts working at a mental institution and finds a horrifying situation.
Director Brad Anderson leads a stellar cast through an obscure Poe story.
This should’ve been spectacular, but it ended up just being interesting. (Seems I’ve seen a lot of ‘interesting’ movies lately.)
Watch for the great cast, and of course, for Kate Beckinsale.
But for a really great Anderson film, watch Session 9 instead.
Not recommened

Ninja News

Today at the Insecure Writer’s Support Group site we have none other than literary agent, Alexander Slater talking about foreign rights!

And thanks to everyone who visited my post on pros and cons of small publishers at the IWSG on Monday – and special thanks to all the authors who contributed.

Found this site courtesy of Medeia Sharif - Awful Library Books. It’s old, odd, and just plain bad books discovered at libraries.

New Releases:

Of Mist and Magic, the product of another collaborative music and words project put together by Samantha Redstreake Geary.
It features a lot of authors you know, so check it out on Amazon!

It's Not Just a Job by Al Penswasser
Find it on Amazon



And thanks for all of the Minion volunteers last week! Due to the fact I have a book coming out in the middle of the Challenge in addition to all the other insanity of the month, the co-hosts graciously excused me from tending a section of the list. In return, I promised to help them find Minions, so hopefully if you wanted to be a Minion, one of the co-hosts has already contacted you.

Heavy or Light Science in Your Science Fiction?

Susan Gourley had a guest post on Christine Rains’ site where she talked about balancing the elements in her romantic science fiction series.

Susan said:
Romance readers don’t want a long explanation of the physics needed for my hero and heroine to travel between solar systems and galaxies at warp speed.

You know what? I don’t think all science fiction fans want that either.

Now, there is high tech and hard science fiction that goes into the scientific details. And then there’s the other end of the spectrum, like space opera and adventure, that is very light on the science.

Since I write space opera, you can pretty much guess how much science I want in my science fiction. I don’t care how something works, I only want to know that it does. That doesn’t mean it’s not plausible or the author didn’t do his research. I just don’t want to read it.

How about you?

Movie Trivia

In honor of David and Michael’s Woven, we’re going for fantasy movie trivia. Name the actor or actress.

1 – Who played Erik in Erik the Viking? (1989)
2 – What comedian voiced Reepicheep the mouse in The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian? (2008)
3 – Who voiced Hiccup’s father, Stoick, in How to Train Your Dragon? (2010)
4 – Who played Gimli In LOTR: Return of the King? (2003)
5 – Who voiced Draco the dragon in Dragonheart? (1996)

Answers Monday!

How many fantasy books have your read that feature ghosts? Seen Automata or Stonehearst Asylum? Want to learn about foreign rights? Know any of the trivia? And how much science you enjoy in your science fiction?

130 comments:

Zoltán Gecse said...

After your short reviews I don't intend to watch the mentioned movies.

Many people thinks all the space operas are science-fictions (like Star Wars). But is not true, because lots of them are space-fantasy (SW again). The writers should put little more science part to their books, because that makes the story more credible.


Trivia:
1. Tim Robbins (BTW, what a great and funny movie! I should rewatch it.)
4. John Rhys-Davies
5. Sean Connery / Sinkovits Imre (HUN)

kaykuala said...

Ghost stories can be mesmerizing. Perhaps balanced with the most fair of movie reviews. Very rarely one sees a negative assertion. And that is being frank! Will nip over to IWSG shortly!

Hank

Ash-Matic said...

I love a scientific explanations in my SF - even if it's just reduced to technobabble.

Want to go FTL?

How are you gonna do that? I need to know for me to have faith in the world the story inhabits.

Even if it's made clear that we 21st century humans wouldn't understand, that it's a side effect of supersymmetric reflector tech (or whatever) - that's okay. That's fine. But even that is a hell of a lot more satisfying than 'the engines do it'.

But maybe that's just me; I love hard SF so that probably leaks over when I read/watch space opera too.

randi lee said...

Hi Alex! Thanks for the movie reviews. Sounds like I'll be sticking to Netflix for my entertainment this week! And so many congratulations to David and Michael. Woven is everywhere, and it's well deserved success!!!

Natalie Aguirre said...

Sounds like Michael and David did lots of research for their book since they also researched weaving and sewing. Very excited for them.

Off to see Alex Slater's post.

Christine Rains said...

I love a good ghost story and in a fantasy setting it's that much more interesting. Congrats to Michael and David! I'm with you on the sci-fi explanations. I don't want scientific details why. The characters in the story know how things work and that's enough for me. (And thanks for the link. Susan's guest post was great!)

Michelle Wallace said...

Congrats to David & Michael!
I just want to read and enjoy the sci-fi, not too concerned with how something works...

Brian Miller said...

automata...had not heard of that one....will check it out....

as far as processes and details...the more we give the more we take from the reader...and their ability to use their imagination....

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Zoltan, got three! And Erik the Viking is such a quirky fun movie.

Ash, it probably does. I'm just not a hard science fiction reader.

Christine, you're welcome. And if the characters understand it, that's all that matters.

Michelle, Amen.

Brian, you nailed it. I like using my imagination.

DL Hammons said...

I was considering renting Stonehearst Asylum th :)is weekend. Thanks for the heads up!

Al Diaz said...


Gimli- John Rhys-Davies
Stoic - Non other than "Leonidas" Gerard Butler, of course
Draco - Sean Connery

The only story with ghosts I can remember right now is Harry Potter and the ghosts are just decorative there. Oh! And Ghost, but that was a movie. Does it count?

So clarify something for the dragon. If you say "interesting" I should understand "it kinda sucks"? Hmmm, that's interesting.

Debra McKellan said...

Yay, top 20! I don't know if I HAVE read a fantasy that has ghosts in it...Hm...

I need light science fiction. Hard science fiction is just...no. lol

Dianne K. Salerni said...

Crushed by a tree, huh? I just started WOVEN this morning, and I wonder if that's a spoiler alert for Nels ...

And I definitely want the lighter aspect of science! One of my favorite space opera series is Lois McMaster Bujold's Vorkosigan saga. Definitely character and culture based, very light on the science.

Cherie Reich said...

Great advice, David and Michael! Congrats on Woven!

And I don't care much for technical science fiction. I prefer space operas and the like.

Samantha Geary Jones said...

Looking forward to reading WOVEN! Thank you for the Of Mist and Magic shout-out! It's a magical journey for a good cause--and the music is phenomenal. I'll send the album your way for "inspiration":)
Cheers!
Sam

Charles Gramlich said...

I've had quite a few dream inspired stories as well.

Crystal Collier said...

Yay for David! And super yay for all of the contributors for Of Mist and Magic.

Thanks for the heads up on Stonehearst Asylum. My hubby really wanted to see it and we have been unable to find a rental copy yet, but now I know not to be disappointed if we do get it.

LD Masterson said...

Ah, a trivia question I can answer with absolute certainty. There's no mistaking the beautiful voice of Sean Connery (Draco in Dragonheart).

And I'm a SciFi Lite person.

Loni Townsend said...

I'm with you on the science!

I can't wait to get started on Woven!

Jo said...

Think I've seen all those movies but the only actor I remembered was Sean Connery. I own both the Train Your Dragon movies too. Alex, do go see Paddington, it's wonderful.

Good luck to David an Michael. A great story.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Congratulations. It sounds like a very original story. I love ghost stories, so this goes on my TBR list.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

Thanks for featuring my quote, Alex. Your science fiction is just the kind I like to read.
Haven't seen either of those movies and haven't even heard of the one.
David and Michael have their book every where the past two weeks.
Great post on IWSG.

Julie Dao said...

I am so thrilled and excited to buy a copy of WOVEN! It sounds like the kind of story that's right up my alley, going by the inspiration that David and Michael drew from!

Fundy Blue said...

Thanks for sharing your duo writing process, David and Michael! Congratulations on "Woven!" I think you made an important point about the importance of reading widely in your writing genre.

Alex, when it comes to hard science in science fiction, I fall somewhere in the middle. One series I thought was well-balanced without the hard science overdone was the Hyperion series. The science has to ring true for me. I do love exploring new worlds and societies through the eyes of the author, and I like enough description to flesh them out. Again, Hyperion did this very well.

In your series I would have liked a little more science, but that's a personal preference. It didn't decrease my pleasure in reading the series because I understood the kind of sci fi book you were writing.

It was fun for me to read your series twice and to follow your growth as a writer, especially in developing your style. Your strength is character development, and you have character driven plots.

As a reader, I'm greedy, and I wanted some more details and background in your books because you had such an interesting storyline throughout the series. Most important to me in any book is that the characters ring true, and yours did.

Have a good one everyone!

Michael Offutt, Phantom Reader said...

No idea on Erik in Erik the Viking. But I do know I had a bunch of friends in the early 90's that could have answered that question. No idea on number two either. Number three is Gerard Butler. Number four is John Rhys Davies. and number five is Sean Connery.

Yeah I suck at trivia, but I love Woven.

Emma Adams said...

I really need to pick up WOVEN, it sounds fabulous!

Most hard science goes over my head, but I do enjoy lighter SF. I think it's about striking a balance so the story doesn't get lost in technical information!

Jessie Humphries said...

Go DPK and MJ! I love that this started with a dream. A creepy dream, at that!

Stephen Hayes said...

Your posts are always informative and filled with fun. I enjoy coming here.

i'm erin. said...

Gah! I love Woven! I went to their book launch in Salt Lake City and it was pretty awesome. They're a great writing duo.

Suzanne Furness said...

Wishing David and Michael all the best with WOVEN. It sounds like a great read. I love a good fantasy/ghost story.

Tyrean Martinson said...

Loved reading Woven - I highly recommend it! It's a perfect, fun fantasy story with a heart of gold. :)
Stoick - Gerard Butler
Draco - Sean Connery, I think
Not sure about the others, but so excited I knew two answers!

I think I might be more of a space opera fan than a sci-fi fan considering I'm more into the plot of story-lines and less into the mechanics of space-craft.

Leovi Leovi said...

Yes, I think the same about Automata!

Lexa Cain said...

Woven sounds fabulous! Wishing David and Michael huge success!

"Automata" sounds like a very interesting premise. Too bad it didn't quite pull it off for you.

I enjoyed Medeia's links too!

Congrats to Samantha and Al on their new releases!

I think I lean toward hard science fiction as long as it doesn't bog down the story. I'm a BIG Peter Hamilton fan but not really sure where his books fall on the scale. :)

Elizabeth Seckman said...

Yay for David and Michael! It was an excellent book.

I liked the Asylum movie, but it may be because my guys got it for me for Christmas and there wasn't a single car chase!!

My husband is zipping through your Cassa series and his reasons for loving it is that you don't beat him over the head with all your techno-jargon and explanations. Tell a geek you're on a spaceship and he knows how to build it in his head.

Chemist Ken said...

Fantasy and ghosts! Woohoo! That's something I have planned for my next book, assuming I get my current ones finished first. I may be a ghost by the time that happens.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

DL, it's interesting but that's about it.

Al, got three, and I think it counts. Interesting is rather middle of the road...

Debra, light is all I can write.

Dianne, that's how I like it - character first.

Samantha, you're welcome and thank you!

Crystal, you'll be prepared.

LD, correct!

Jo, that's right.

Susan, you're welcome.

Fundy, thank you! Honored you read them twice. And yes, I grew as a writer.

Michael, you got three!

Emma, exactly.

Stephen, I'll try to stay consistent with that.

Erin, that's awesome.

Tyrean, you got three.

Leovi, good to know I wasn't the only one.

Lexa, probably more towards the harder science fiction.

Elizabeth, that's awesome to hear!

Pat Hatt said...

Once science fiction starts sounding like a technical manual I tend to glance over that part. I'd rather have it something like Stargate, throw in a few words and poof, it works haha

Tim Robbins
ummm
Gerard
John Rhy Davies
Connery

Liz Blocker said...

Hmmm, I've seen a lot of 'interesting' movies, too. Thanks for helping me know which ones they are!!! ;)

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

Congratulations on all the new books. They sound exciting.
I haven't seen either of the movies.
Ghost stories are some of my favorite books. Haven't read any lately though.
Technical stuff just confuses me. Keep it simple. :)

Heather M. Gardner said...

Happy Wednesday, Alex!

I'm looking forward to reading Woven. It's on the list. I swear!

Kate made a bad movie? What? I suppose they all need to pay their bills as well. :)

Trivia:
1. ?
2. ?
3. Gerard B.
4. ?
5. Sean C.

Wow. I suck at that.

Have a great day sir!
Heather

Annalisa Crawford said...

Stonehearst Asylum does sound interesting - I might have to check that one out... And read some Poe!

Andrew Leon said...

I will probably see Automata at some point. Not at the theater, though.

Murees Dupé said...

Some great books. Sorry, but I guess I'll pass on the movies. I don't read a lot of sci-fi, but I know I should. Sometimes i don't understand the terminology or it reads heavy, if that makes sense. Though, I do love sci-fi movies.

dolorah said...

Ugh, I only knew the last two of the trivia.

Sometimes I want a little explanation of how certain technology works, but mostly I just assume it does. I have a basic knowledge of what is needed to make a computer work - motherboard, hard drive, video and sound cards, modem - but that is as far as I want to learn. I'm not a HEA lover, so I like light romance in any novel.

M Pax said...

Congrats to David and Michael! I've been a long time fan of the genres I write in. It does help.

I saw Automata on Netflix. Husband Unit and I weren't too impressed. It could have been better.

Al Diaz said...

Oh, dragon gets it! Like when people say "you have an interesting personality", is like saying "I could do better".

Jeff Chapman said...

Love the cover for Woven. So I'm not the only person who likes ghost stories and fantasy. I'm with you, Alex, on sci-fi. I think technical explanations could date a piece as tech advances and maybe even make it sound silly after awhile.

Birgit said...

I have not read enough ghost stories and yet I love that type of story. I have read about real happenings and have even had weird stuff happen to me. I know Gimli is John Rhys Davies and The dragon is Sean Connery but I don't know the rest. As for tons of science fiction-nope but give me enough so i think it makes sense and i am right in there (think Star Trek)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Pat, Stargate works for me. And you got four.

Heather! At least she was good in the movie. Hey, you got two right.

Murees, it does make sense. That's why I keep mine simple.

Mary, it could've been!

Al - exactly! (Or that's what guys say about a girl who's not very pretty - she has an interesting and nice personality.)

Birgit, Star Trek rocks. And you got two right.

Elizabeth Spann Craig/Riley Adams said...

I've lost a lot of time at Awful Library Books! But it's absolutely hilarious.

I like your "not quite recommended" line. :)

Empty Nest Insider said...

Congrats to David and Michael! I haven't seen any of the movies on your trivia list. Awful Library Books sounds like a great idea for everyone but the authors!

Julie

mail4rosey said...

Always nice to see who you're guesting! Wishing all of you a great Wednesday. :)

J E Fritz said...

Congrats Michael and David! I'm so glad your book is ready for all of us to enjoy.

I might have to put those movies on my watch list.

mooderino said...

Don't think I've ever read a really good time travel or ftl explanation, but a good new concept no one's even thought of before (like psychohistory in the Foundation series) can be very engrossing, even though it's total bs.

Patricia Lynne said...

I haven't read much science fiction lately. Unless you count the Doctor Who trivia books I've been devouring. ;)

L. Diane Wolfe said...

If there's a ghost, the story usually falls under paranormal or horror.

I don't want a bunch of science in the books I read. It slows down the story.

J.L. Campbell said...

Woven does sound like a great story. Read Susan's article and she's right. Romance lovers want the romance up front and everything else after.

Lynda R Young said...

Doing that research is crucial!

I hadn't even heard of Automata... I must find it and watch, despite your not quite recommendation ;)

Dixie@dcrelief said...

Did anyone want me as a minion or do I receive a reject letter? (LOL)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Elizabeth, it was in that fuzzy middle area...

Lynda, it is worth a watch.

Dixie, did no one contact you? I'll let everyone know.

E.E. Giorgi said...

so interesting that from one dream two people created a story, fascinating! David and Michael, you guys must have a true affinity! :-)

Mason T. Matchak said...

Hmm... I like science in my sci-fi if it's made relevant and interesting. One of my favorite online comics, Schlock Mercenary, plays all up and down the hard-to-soft scale. But there are moments when the creator adds a footnote to explain the science behind something cool that's happening, and I think it adds a lot to the story without bogging it down.

Holy Ghost Writer said...

A middle ground with almost any writing is the best way to go, imo

The Happy Whisk said...

I enjoy science a great deal and I enjoy reading how things work, but the books I read are about baking, not space.

Happy Wednesday.

Michael D'Agostino said...

I'm ashamed to admit that I didn't know any of the trivia answers. I'll guess Ricky Gervais for the Narnia question.

Belle Wong said...

Woven has a great cover! And about the science in science fiction - I just need it to be plausible.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

As you know from my blog, Alex. I love ghosts -- I even wrote A book of myself helped by the ghosts of Marlene Dietrich and Mark Twain!

Leandra Wallace said...

I haven't watched either movie yet. My husband wanted to get Automata, but Redbox didn't have it at the time. And I can't think of any fantasies w/ghosts right now. My brain tends to go blank like that. I'm sure I'll think of some tomorrow! =)

Liz A. said...

I actually went and got a degree in physics, but I don't really want all the technical details in my sci-fi novels. I find it interesting, but I read for story, not for science.

I did see #1, but it's been too long. But I do know 3 (Gerard Butler) and 5 (Sean Connery).

Julie Musil said...

So cool that the idea came from a dream! I keep hearing great things about Woven.

Rawknrobyn.blogspot.com said...

I'm glad you posted Ken's book. He's so much more talented than he'll ever give himself credit for. Thanks, Alex.

Aunt Mary said...

Hi ALEX, I liked your movie reviews, they are short, interesting and honest.

Carolyn Brown said...

I like the look of automata. I haven't heard anything about this movie.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Ivy, and then you do need the science of baking.

Michael, wasn't him, although he was in a Muppets movie.

Belle, that's all I need.

Roland, you are the master of ghosts!

Liz, I just want the story. And you got two.

Robyn, of course!

Mary, I aim for simple.

Shah Wharton said...

Love ghost stories, and although I'm definitely not a fan of reading hard-sci-fi, I enjoy watching it. But while I'm watching it, it needs to be believable, so an explanation is important. Best served in kind sprinkles rather than dense and draining monologues however :)

Elsie Amata said...

One of my favorite movies is Princess Brides. Knowing that helped inspire Woven means it must be a great book!

Al has his book out? Great for him!! Best of luck, Al!!

And, thanks for the heads up about Face Off. I need to catch up. Hope I haven't missed much….

mshatch said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
mshatch said...

I like more hard science rather than less but I love scifi either way really, and I can't wait to read Woven because I love ghost stories, too!

Melissa said...

I'm so excited for David and Michael!

Congrats on all the other releases, too!

I agree about the science details. Research should serve as a framework for the story, not dominate it.

Dean K Miller said...

Enjoy many ghostly tales, but haven't done a fantasy version. Need to look into that and the music/word collaboration product as well. I've been considering that idea.

0-fer on the movie trivia, as usual.

Maurice Mitchell said...

I'd watch Automata for Banderas and Erik the Viking is an underrated classic. "You'll never be a berserker!"

Shell Flower said...

Woven looks awesome. I don't recall reading any fantasy stories featuring ghosts, but I love realistic stories about ghosts. I totally want to see Stonehearst Asylum--big Poe fan here. I like a little science in my fiction, but not so much that it gets boring.

David P. King said...

Thank you so much for having us over, Alex. And many thanks to everyone for your comments.

And congrats to the authors and their books!

I need a good sci fi fix every couple weeks. I may give these selections a shot. :)

Leovi Leovi said...

Thanks for the information on Stonehearst Asylum!

Rachna Chhabria said...

I love ghost stories. Infact, I am planning to write one. Woven has been added to my TBR pile which is now taller than me.

DMS said...

I am so excited to read Woven. Love the cover and the book sounds amazing. As someone who has written a MG book with a co-author, I especially love hearing about how the two authors came up with the idea and how they worked together. Wishing them all the best!
~Jess

Arlee Bird said...

Best wishes to the authors.

Don't recall reading any fantasy with ghosts.

Haven't even heard of those films let alone seen them and I probably won't.

No heavy science for me though I do like some reasonable short explanation when the science seems implausible.

Arlee Bird
A to Z Challenge Co-host
Tossing It Out

Nicki Elson said...

Aha, so Woven truly is woven of inspiration from all sorts of fantastical stories.

I definitely don't need to have in-depth scientifical explanations, but I like to have things make sense when I choose to think about them, so yes, it's very important for the writer to do his/her homework.

Beth Ellyn Summer said...

wow Michael and David's cover is AWESOME. and nope don't think I ever read a fantasy with ghosts!

Sherry Ellis said...

I've seen Woven featured on a few blogs. It looks like a really good book. I like books that incorporate magic and ghosts.

Decadent Kane said...

I've seen both those movies. I agree with your assessment of the first one, but I quite liked Stonehearst Asylum. Granted I don't find it one of my all time favorites, but Kate did a fantastic job of carrying the movie.

I know the answer to #3- only because he's my hottie. LOL Gerard Butler. :)

Margo Kelly said...

WOVEN certainly looks interesting! Another great post full of terrific information! THANKS! :)

Michael Abayomi said...

Automata was easily the biggest snoozefest I saw last year. The movie started okay, and I loved the premise, but that seemingly-endless walk through the desert was simply too tedious to endure.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Elsie, think they are on week five.

Melissa, exactly.

Maurice, great line!

David, you're welcome.

Kane, Kate can do no wrong.

Michael, that did get boring.

S.K. Anthony said...

So excited for David and Michael!! :D

I agree with the light science and Susan's comment. I don't go into depth because my chick reader's won't care as much, but I have just enough to give plausible reasons.

And...I'm not interested in those two movies, thank goodness lol

Mary Montague Sikes said...

Researching ghosts--that could be another book!

JJ said...

Alex: I will be ordering Dragon of the Stars. I have been reading more sci fi lately, and it looks interesting. I'll let you know.

Sandra Cox said...

I love fantasy and ghosts. Good luck with this.

jamieayres.com said...

I agree with you, Alex! Lucas totally ruined Star Wars when he tried to explain the midichlorians . . . I'll take the smoke and mirrors any day :-)

Donna K. Weaver said...

Hubby and I loved Woven. Fun read.

Carrie-Anne said...

I've always preferred soft sci-fi, where the focus is more on a story which just happens to take place in some future world, though I've read some harder sci-fi stories as well. I really need to get back to my long-hiatused soft sci-fi Bildungsroman set from 3001–06, but I don't recall many detailed explanations of the various technologies. Things like teleportation, artificial intelligence generating fully-cooked, prepared food, and normal people travelling on rockets just existed and were taken for granted.

Medeia Sharif said...

That's a great tip on research. My first fantasy and paranormal, two separate books, where published not too long ago. I like to think I read many books in both genres and that my ideas were original. Since I've been interested in speculative fiction lately, I know I have to read more spec fiction.

Stephanie Faris said...

I've never really gotten into space stories--not sure why. Even the Twilight Zones that were set in space didn't really interest me. I think too many battles perhaps? When you think about it, though, a spaceship in sci-fi is kind of like a giant cruise ship...just no buffets or old people!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

JJ, thanks!!

Jamie, Amen!

Carrie-Anne, those things are just taken for granted in my stories.

Stephanie, no buffets on my spaceships - sorry!

~Sia McKye~ said...

I don't need a lot of detail on how something works either. I'm reading it for the adventure and setting. Just needs some logic behind it all to make it plausible. Just enough so I can visualize it. :-)

Sia McKye Over Coffee

Leovi Leovi said...

Thank you for inviting these two interesting authors: David Powers King and Michael Jensen!

Chrys Fey said...

I love stories about ghosts! Woven is definitely on my TBR list.

When I read sci-fi I like it light.

Al Penwasser said...

WOW! Thanks for that.
Who's that handsome guy on the cover of that book?
No, not that wretched 'It's Not Just A Job' thing.
I think I'm hallucinating.

Sheena-kay Graham said...

I prefer god scifi, that's what I say. But in writing I would never be able to go beyond light sci-fi. The idea of writing the heavy stuff is just too much for my brain. Woven is everywhere! Research is important but so is creating your own unique story. Thanks guys.I'm working under J.L. Campbell as a minion. Whoo! Enjoy your week Alex.

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

I'm guessing that's Antonio on the front cover with his head shaved. Okay, that's strange, but I bet he's still just as cute without hair. Woven is everywhere. Yay!

I'm late because we're actually having a bit of a tropical storm off and on. The power keeps cutting out during the many rain storms. Still better than 3.5 feet of snow!

Intangible Hearts said...

I love the cover of Woven!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Sia, exactly.

Al, you're welcome!

Sheena-kay, glad you are a Minion.

Joylene, tropical storm sounds so odd right now...

Mark Noce said...

Just started Woven! Now you know what I'll be up to this weekend:)

alexia said...

Woven sounds awesome! So glad it's finally out.

I haven't seen those movies, but seeing Kingsman tomorrow!

T.F. Walsh said...

I'm with you... if technology is plausible in a story, I don't need to know the finer details of how it works... just get on with the story I say:)

ediFanoB said...

It's a bit sad but work keep me that busy that I arrive home later than usual and furthermore I'm often too tired to read blog posts in the evening.

I remember that I read about Automata a while ago. Need to check again and try to find out if it will be shown in cinemas in Germany.

Sandra Cox said...

Happy Valentine's Day, Alex.

Cindy said...

A good amount of science can be interesting, but sometimes authors are more interested in the science and it's more like reading a text book. One can't forget good characterization, conflict and plot. Both can be together if done well.

AJ Lauer said...

I'm a light science in my sci-fi kind of girl. My husband likes the heavier stuff, but I guess I'm more interested in the human aspects of what happens. That's part of why I loved BSG - it takes such an in depth look at how we react to stressors. Delicious.

Milo James Fowler said...

Thanks to Netflix streaming, I caught both of those movies last month -- while I had the flu. I enjoyed them, but that might have been the cold medicine...

G. B. Miller said...

I'm kind of in the light-to-medium range when it comes to sci in my sci/fi.

I'm not really into sci/fi movies as it seems to me that they go way beyond what is needed for FX.

Father Nature's Corner

Toinette Thomas said...

I haven't ready many books with ghosts in them, but I wouldn't mind to read more. Not sure if I'm up for Stonehearst, but Automata might be interesting. My trivia brain isn't working today. I feel like I should know all these except Erik the Viking, but I'm drawing a blank.
I do actually like to have some real science in my sci-fi and sometimes my fantasy if it fits, but I don't need it to be long and involved.

Beate said...

Thank you for letting us know what not to watch at the theater ;) If at all I'd rather watch those movies at home then :)
I think I've only read Harry Potter so far that features ghosts ;)
Have a great Sunday and an awesome week!

Suzanne Sapsed said...

First time I've not been able to answer even one of the trivia questions :(
Automata - Banderas is my all-time hearthrob, so I will be very shallow and watch it just so I can sigh and listen to his sexy voice! x

Kimberly said...

I'm excited to read Woven! I don't recall ever reading a fantasy with a ghost. :)

D.G. Hudson said...

I might like that Automata as I have a fascination with robots and their ilk.

Thanks for dropping by my blog when I've been absent a lot. I appreciate the encouragement re the A to Z, and will put forth more effort on it. . .
Funny captcha for someone like me who likes robots. . .

Nick Wilford said...

I like to follow a good story first and foremost and not too much interested in pages of technical details. Like anything - if it serves the story then keep it in, if not then cut!

That awful libraries site looks like a funny place to kill a few hours sometime...

I only know the book of Erik the Viking by Terry Jones, never seen the film. I think I only #4, which is three names and Welsh... John Rhys Davies?

Theresa Milstein said...

I'm excited for Jensen and King.

I've read several books with ghosts. Always creepy!

SuperLux said...

Woven is creating such a buzz in the blogging world. Excited for these wonderful authors.

Stonehearst Asylum sounds thrilling. Thanks for sharing the review. :)

Sandra Almazan said...

Looks like I missed this post last week. Terri Bruce is in the middle of a series about one woman's journey into the afterlife, and I've read other books that deal with ghosts. I can't remember the name of them, though.

There is some science discussion in my Catalyst Chronicles series, but I try to use it in small doses and have it described by characters who care about the science.