Suppose you were born with a magical ability, but the ability was so intrinsic to who you were that you were unaware of how unusual it was. Just as a child doesn’t know what a miracle it is to be able to see colours, or distinguish the different scents of… Read More

NaNoWriMo and What Comes Next by Christi J. Whitney

November is nearly over, which means NaNoWriMo is also coming to an end – well, the writing part, at least. Anyone who has ever participated in this annual phenomenon will know exactly what I’m talking about. If you haven’t, here it is in a nutshell: NaNoWriMo presents you with the… Read More

Building a magic system on memories – Gerrard Cowan

Memories can play tricks on us, fading and twisting over time and sometimes even changing altogether. How, then, can they form the basis of a magic system? That was the question I faced in developing The Machinery Trilogy. Without giving too much away, memories sit at the heart of the… Read More

The Anatomy of Truth by Nancy K. Wallace

From the very beginning, The Wolves of Llisé has been about truth. On my website, there is a quotation by Mark Twain that I love: “The very ink with which all history is written is merely fluid prejudice.” It’s an old refrain but most would agree that history… Read More

Marina J. Lostetter – Alternate Yous

Clones have long held a fascination for storytellers.  Before cloning was a scientific reality, there were many myths and fables about evil twins, doppelgängers, and the creation of humans “from scratch.” Copies, supernatural reflections, and Frankenstein’s monster all come from the same long-standing questions and fears: what… Read More

Creating a World by Anna Smith Spark

When I came to write The Court of Broken Knives, it was the world that came first, not the story. The story, in fact, is pretty simple, in the way that myths and folk tales often are. The first scene I wrote was a description of men in a… Read More

Hero Risen: Guest blog from Andy Livingstone

The safety valve for our darker selves Cricket with my parents and brother on baking-hot days in a park on holiday in Blackpool. Tennis, with my dad pretending I was as good as him and, in later years, with my brother proving I was not. Rugby at school, hockey after… Read More

An exclusive message from Robin Hobb

I dedicated Assassin’s Fate to Fitz and the Fool. They’ve been my closest friends for over twenty years. That’s not to denigrate my marriage of forty-six years, or the friendships that reach back to my high school. The characters we write live inside our minds, creating an internal friendship that… Read More

A Letter from Mark Lawrence

Red Sister contains a very different story to that in my debut, Prince of Thorns, or my next trilogy starting with Prince of Fools. When I brought Jorg Ancrath’s story to a close I made it clear that I didn’t want to be wedded to one character for the whole… Read More

Red Sister is coming! Out tomorrow!

  “If you wish to know what someone is made of you must squeeze them until it shows.” In the Convent of Sweet Mercy Abbess Glass and her sisters apply pressure to the girls placed in their care. They find out what their novices are made of and train each… Read More

A Ripple in the Glass by A. F. E. Smith

Every book holds up a mirror to the world, and to humanity. Sometimes the reflection shows us as we are. Sometimes it shows us as we might be. Fantasy is particularly good at this, I think, because it puts a ripple in the glass. That ripple changes the reflection, makes… Read More