Friday, February 14, 2020

Invaders From Planet 3 - Ep 36 - Walter Jon Williams

Author Walter Jon Williams joins us in this episode! We talk about his first loves in science fiction, including Heinlein's Have Spacesuit — Will Travel and John Schealer's Zip-Zip Goes to Venus. And Walter tells us about his evolution as a writer: from feeling the compulsion to write at age 3, to getting a rejection letter from the editor of The New Yorker, to writing historical fiction novels, to getting into sf. He also reflects on the nature of his compulsion to write, including finding a balance between the business needs of writing and the compulsion, and eventually watching the compulsion die.

We also talk about the universe of science fiction publishing, and the change from the days of limited selection to today's huge output of stories, and the challenges of maintaining a sense of what the community is talking about. We discuss Walter's time in the spotlight in the 1980s when his cyberpunk novel Hardwired garnered love and hate. And he shares the story of his involvement in the Wild Cards mosaic superhero novels, including his coining of "toaster" as a derogatory term for androids.

And Walter shares some details from his two newest novels, Quillifer the Knight (published in late 2019), and the latest, as-yet-untitled Praxis novel, due later this year.

Our conversation took place in the impromptu studio of bloginhood in the Dublin convention centre last summer at Worldcon 2019.

To learn more about Walter and his novels, visit his website:

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Let the Invasion begin!

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