Linda Nagata: the blog at Hahví.net

Award Eligible Work — 2015

Wednesday, December 2nd, 2015

For those of you who like to nominate for the annual science fiction and fantasy awards, including the Nebula and Hugo awards, here’s a roundup of my 2015 award-eligible work.

In the short story category…

The Way Home in Operation Arcana“The Way Home” is a military fantasy story that reads like science fiction. It belongs to the subgenre known as “portal stories” in which ordinary people pass through some sort of portal to an extraordinary world. Bluntly, I think this is one of the best short stories I’ve ever written. I like its structure, its characterization, and its compactness — it contains an action story with multiple characters in only 6,300 words. Since I tend to write long, I take the latter as a personal victory. All that said, the story has garnered very little interest. So judge for yourself! “The Way Home” was reprinted at Lightspeed Magazine where it’s available to read free online.

In the novel category…

The Trials: book 2 of The Red TrilogyThe Trials
book 2
The Red Trilogy
Going Dark: book 3 of The Red TrilogyGoing Dark
book 3
The Red Trilogy

The books in The Red Trilogy are fast-paced, near-future, high-tech science fiction thrillers. The Trials continues the story begun in the Nebula and Campbell-nominated The Red, and Going Dark completes that story.

A short history for those of you new to The Red Trilogy: The Red was originally self-published in 2013. It was republished by Simon & Schuster’s Saga Press this past June, with The Trials following in August, and Going Dark released in November.

Edit: this sale price is no longer available. As of this writing, the ebook of The Trials (and also of The Red) is on sale at most ebook vendors for $1.99, so if you’re interested, this is a great time to pick them up.

Edit: For the month of February 2016, the Saga Press ebook editions of all volumes in The Red Trilogy are priced at $2.99 each.

SFWA members: ebook and PDF editions of all three volumes of The Red Trilogy are available for download in the SFWA Forum. Once you’re logged in, you can find them by following this link.

That’s it! Thanks for stopping by.

Science Fiction World:
Chinese Translations

Wednesday, August 26th, 2015

Science Fiction World is the primary publisher of Chinese-language short science fiction. I’ve been told they are the largest-circulation SF magazine in the world. A few years ago they translated and published my novella “Goddesses,” but I never saw that edition.

Now they’ve translated and published my story “The Way Home.” It appeared in the June issue. I just received my copies, so I thought I’d share them here. Of course I can’t read the issue, but check out the cover art below.

“The Way Home” was originally published last March in the anthology Operation Arcana. It was republished at Lightspeed Magazine, where it’s available to read (in English) online.


Podcast of “The Way Home”

Sunday, March 8th, 2015

Just a short note… In case you missed it, there is a podcast edition of my recent story “The Way Home,” which was dual published last week in Lightspeed Magazine and the anthology Operation Arcana.

I had a chance to listen to the podcast yesterday. It’s really well done, though I have to admit there are parts when I was thinking, “No, no. The emphasis wasn’t meant to be like that!” Yes, we all have our different ways of interpreting dialogue.

The podcast is hosted by Jim Freund, produced by Skyboat Media, and narrated by Stefan Rudnicki. Find it online at Lightspeed Magazine.

New Story: “The Way Home”

Tuesday, March 3rd, 2015

Operation-Arcana-final_250x400READ IT ONLINE

Operation Arcana, an anthology of military fantasy stories edited by John Joseph Adams, is out today in both print and ebook editions.

The anthology includes stories by T.C. McCarthy, Genevieve Valentine, Myke Cole, Elizabeth Moon, and many more, including me.

My story is called “The Way Home” and it’s available to read online at Lightspeed Magazine. There’s also an audio version available at that same link, if you prefer to listen.

In addition, Robyn Lupo did a short interview with me, to get some background on “The Way Home.” Read the interview here.

This story is a favorite of mine. I hope you enjoy it.

Operation Arcana — Table of Contents

Friday, November 21st, 2014

Operation-Arcana-final_250x400It’s getting closer!

Back in July I posted about the anthology Operation Arcana, edited by John Joseph Adams. It’s an all-original anthology of military fantasy forthcoming from Baen Books and due out in March 2015 — and yes, one of the included stories is mine. That story is called “The Way Home” and it was a favorite of mine among the stories I wrote in 2013.

Details are below, but here’s the final cover art. The artist is Dominic Harman, with cover design by Jason Gurley.

Cover Copy

In the realms of fantasy, the battlefield is where heroism comes alive, magic is unleashed, and legends are made and unmade. From the War of the Ring, Tolkien’s epic battle of good versus evil, to The Battle of the Blackwater, George R.R. Martin’s grim portrait of the horror and futility of war, these fantastical conflicts reflect our highest hopes and darkest fears, bringing us mesmerizing visions of silver spears shining in the sun and vast hordes of savage beasts who threaten to destroy all that we hold dear.

Now acclaimed editor John Joseph Adams is sounding the battle cry and sixteen of today’s top authors are reporting for duty, spinning never-before-published, spellbinding tales of military fantasy, including a Black Company story from Glen Cook, a Paksenarrion story from Elizabeth Moon, and a Shadow Ops story by Myke Cole. Within these pages you’ll also find World War I trenches cloaked in poison gas and sorcery, modern day elite special forces battling hosts of the damned, and steampunk soldiers fighting for their lives in a world torn apart by powers that defy imagination.

Featuring both grizzled veterans and fresh young recruits alike, including Tanya Huff, Simon R. Green, Carrie Vaughn, Jonathan Maberry, and Seanan McGuire, Operation Arcana is a must for any military buff or fantasy fan. You’ll never look at war the same way again.

Table of Contents (more…)

Operation Arcana

Monday, July 14th, 2014

OperationArcana250x377It’s still a long way off — not due to publish until next April — but since this blog hasn’t been overwhelmingly busy lately, I thought I’d share the just-released cover of Operation Arcana in which I will have a story.

Operation Arcana is an anthology of military fantasy stories edited by John Joseph Adams. My contribution is a short story called “The Way Home” — and it’s the last story of mine still to be published!** After this summer, I hope to write a few more.

To see a larger version of the cover, and to review the list of contributors,

** I have a story in the anthology War Stories, the ebook of which has just been released to Kickstarter contributors, and will be generally available later in the year.

Writing to Request

Tuesday, February 11th, 2014

Goddesses & Other Stories by Linda NagataI think of myself as a very independent writer. An idea will occur to me, I’ll play with it, work at it, expand on it, and if things go well, it will grow into a story. But fiction doesn’t have to occur all in isolation. Sometimes a request for a specific sort of story can be the inspiration to push past our own creative limits.

The first time I was asked to write a story to request was in the late nineties. Back then I was young and cocky, significant money was involved, and the project was unique, so I agreed. The assignment was to write a story with a positive, near-future setting. I talked over the details with the editors, took notes on all the technological and societal elements they wanted to see included, warned them that stories set in utopian milieus tend to be a bit dull, and set about it. The result was a decent novella. That project never reached publication, but I didn’t mourn because I’d been well paid and got all the rights back. I rewrote the novella, stripping out all the parts that were there only because the editors wanted them, and I ended up with an edgier story that I retitled “Goddesses.” It sold to Ellen Datlow for publication in, and went on to win a Nebula Award.

Here’s the takeaway: I would never have written this story on my own — it had nothing to do with anything else I was writing at the time — but once pointed in a specific direction, I was able to move beyond my own ingrained limits, and write a story of a kind that was new for me.

Title Contest! + short story sale

Friday, December 20th, 2013

I have this quirk of personality. I don’t like writing the same sorts of things for any extended period of time. This is why I’ve tended to go from far-future stories, to very near-future, to high fantasy, to middle-grade SF, to gritty fantasy, to magic realism… Easily bored, I guess. And who needs an author platform anyway?

At any rate, when John Joseph Adams, editor of Lightspeed and Nightmare magazines, as well as many anthologies, contacted me about writing a military fantasy story, my response was an enthusiastic “Yes!” Here was a chance to escape for a bit from science fiction, in which I’d been immersed for quite some time.

The result was a story presently titled “The Way Home” (this could still change) — and it’s a story I’m very happy with.

But there is a problem: the anthology is still untitled. JJA is still trying to come up with the perfect title for it and he’s encouraging all of y’all to help out by holding a name-this-anthology contest. If you’d like to participate, you can read more about it and enter your title ideas here — and you can also see the list of contributing authors.