Middle Grade Fantasy Faves

I love a good middle grade fantasy. In fact, I sometimes prefer reading children’s books. They can be fun and humorous and don’t demand much and – best of all – I can discuss them with the kids. In fact, a couple of years ago, I wrote the first draft of a middle grade fantasy novel with (for me) surprising speed, in response to their demand for a new chapter every night. More on that later. Continue reading

Posted in Books and media, Science fiction and fantasy | Tagged | 4 Comments

Sumer Is Icumen In (and other reasons to smile)

Sumer Is Icumen In is the title of a medieval English round of the mid-13th century. The middle English is pretty hilarious to sing aloud (Lhude sing cuccu!), but it feels appropriate to the day, which must be the first (okay maybe second?) sunny day in the last TWO WEEKS. April showers are supposed to bring May flowers, but what are May showers supposed to bring? Floods, that’s what. We’ve been relatively fortunate in the GTA… Continue reading

Posted in Books and media, Science fiction and fantasy, Writing | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

April News and Reviews

News flash! I have a release date for my novel. Markswoman is scheduled for 23 January 2018. A few weeks, and I should have a cover to share. It’s all very exciting.

I’m working with my editor on line edits, and it’s a very interesting process, quite an eye-opener for me. I’ve been writing this book for so long, and have so many versions in my head (and computer) that sometimes I can’t ‘see’ it any more. That’s why my editor’s eagle eye is so critical. I’m loving her suggestions, and can’t wait to share the results with the world. Continue reading

Posted in Books and media, Science fiction and fantasy, Writing | Tagged , | 4 Comments

Hackers’ Faire: now live at Cast of Wonders

Story Day! Very pleased to announce that Hacker’s Faire, my far-future story with cats, cyborgs and buskers mingling in a bombed-out space station in Toronto, is now available to read or listen at Cast of Wonders. The story is narrated by Wilson Fowlie and hosted by Alethea Kontis.

Hackers’ Faire was inspired by the amazing 2014 New York Makers’ Faire. Giant electronic giraffes, robots, rockets and 3D printers galore… I wandered the Faire in a daze, and in the months that followed, drew on that ‘sense of wonder’ to write my own version of a far-future Faire. I hope you enjoy reading (or listening to) it as much as I did writing it. Continue reading

Posted in Science fiction and fantasy, Writing | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Poems on the Underground

poemsontheugTwenty years ago, a friend of mine from England gave me a beautiful gift: a book titled Poems on the Underground, a collection of poems that were selected to be displayed on unlet advertising spaces in the London Tube. The reasoning was that the Underground is an inescapable part of life for commuters, and we all have a yearning for poetry, or at least prefer reading poetry to ads. The project was a hit with commuters. And I still have my amazing book. The poems are as vibrant as ever. Continue reading

Posted in Books and media, Writing | Tagged

In the Ruins of the Residency

This winter, I returned after a gap of some years to visit my old hometown Lucknow: the capital of the most populous and tumultuous state of India, Uttar Pradesh. There were parts that looked utterly different – enormous, walled-off parks with stern statues, bright and noisy malls, a river development and – most surprisingly – the beginnings of a metro.

And there were parts that were just the same – the crowded, cow-dung smeared streets of the old city, the boys flying kites on the rooftops, the myriad little shops and food stalls to tempt the unwary. There were just as many cows as when I was a child, and a lot more people and traffic, resulting in the kind of nightmare congestion that would give road rage to a flying pig. Continue reading

Posted in Travel | Tagged ,

Piety, Prayer, Peacekeeper, Apocalypse

For a writer, there is no better way to welcome the new year than with a new publication. I am delighted to announce that my story Piety, Prayer, Peacekeeper, Apocalypse has been published by Podcastle and is available both to read and to listen as a podcast, narrated by Stephanie Morris. Thanks to the lovely folks at Podcastle, and to Stephanie for an amazing narration! Continue reading

Posted in Science fiction and fantasy, Writing | Tagged , ,