Monday, March 10, 2014

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Martha Wells - Emilie and the Sky World (Emilie #2)

Today, we're really excited to be hosting Martha Wells, author of Emilie and the Sky World, which is out now from Strange Chemistry! Martha took some time to answer a few questions for us, and we're happy to share her answers with you. Before we get to her interview though, here's some information about Martha and her newest book!

About the book!

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Title: Emilie and the Sky World (Emilie #2)
Author: Martha Wells
Publication Date: March 4, 2014

Ashley's Emilie and the Sky World Review
Ashley's Emilie and the Hollow World Review

Synopsis: When Emilie and Daniel arrive in Silk Harbor, Professor Abindon, an old colleague of the Marlendes, warns them that she’s observed something strange and potentially deadly in the sky, a disruption in an upper air aether current. But as the Marlendes investigate further, they realize it’s a ship from another aetheric plane. It may be just a friendly explorer, or something far more sinister, but they will have to take an airship into the dangerous air currents to find out.

Emilie joins the expedition and finds herself deep in personal entanglements, with an angry uncle, an interfering brother, and an estranged mother to worry about – not to mention a lost family of explorers, the strange landscapes of the upper air, and the deadly menace that inhabits the sky world.

About the author! 

Martha Wells was born in 1964 in Fort Worth, Texas, and graduated from Texas A&M University with a B.A. in Anthropology. She is the author of over a dozen science fiction and fantasy novels, including the Nebula-nominated The Death of the Necromancer, as well as a number of short stories and nonfiction articles. Her books have been published in seven languages.

Her first novel, The Element of Fire, was published by Tor in hardcover in July 1993 and was a finalist for the 1993 Compton Crook/Stephen Tall Award and a runner-up for the 1994 Crawford Award. The French edition, Le feu primordial, was a 2003 Imaginales Award nominee.

Her third novel The Death of the Necromancer (Avon Eos) was a 1998 Nebula Award Nominee and the French edition was a 2002 Imaginales Award nominee.

The Fall of Ile-Rien trilogy, published by HarperCollins Eos -- The Wizard Hunters (May 2003), The Ships of Air (July 2004), and The Gate of Gods, (November 2005) -- is set in the same world as The Element of Fire and The Death of the Necromancer. She has also published three media tie-in novels: Stargate Atlantis: Reliquary, released in March 2006, and Stargate Atlantis: Entanglement in March 2007, and a Star Wars novel, Empire and Rebellion: Razor's Edge in September 2013.

She has had short stories published in Realms of Fantasy, Black Gate, Lone Star Stories, Lightspeed Magazine, and in the anthologies Elemental, Tales of the Emerald Serpent, The Other Half of the Sky, and Tales of the Emerald Serpent II: A Knight in the Silk Purse. She has essays in the non-fiction anthologies Farscape Forever, Mapping the World of Harry Potter, Chicks Unravel Time, and The Kobold Guide to Magic.

Her latest fantasy novels were published by Night Shade Books: The Cloud Roads in March 2011, and the sequels, The Serpent Sea, in January 2012, and The Siren Depths, in December 2012. Her first young adult fantasy, Emilie and the Hollow World, was published in April 2013 by Strange Chemistry Books, and the sequel, Emilie and the Sky World in March 2014. There will be a two-volume print collection (Tales of the Raksura Volume I and Tales of the Raksura Volume II) and individual ebook editions of four novellas set in the world of the Books of the Raksura series in September of 2014.
You can find Martha on her website and @marthawells1 on Twitter.

And now, the interview!

What are some of your favorite classic sci-fi/fantasy books?
Wraiths of Time by Andre Norton, Zelde Metara by F.M. Busby, The Birthgrave by Tanith Lee.

What made you decide you wanted to be a writer?
I don't really remember. I wrote stories (basically fanfic about Godzilla movies) when I was in elementary school, and I know by the time I was in high school I wanted to be a writer. I felt a lot of connection to the books I read, and I was one of those kids who probably wouldn't have survived if I hadn't had access to a library and books to escape into. I think I've just wanted to write stories that other people could escape into too.

If you had to choose, would you rather visit the Hollow World or the Sky World?
Definitely the Hollow World. The Cirathi would be fun to hang out with.

Which character in Emilie and the Sky World was your favorite to write?
I think it's a toss-up between Emilie and Professor Abindon. Lord Engal is a lot of fun too.

How does a typical writing day normally go for you?
I get up and answer email, check out what's going on online, and take care of anything that's time-sensitive, then start writing as soon as I can. I'll usually go from about 9:00 am or so until around 3:00 pm, then I'll take care of any chores or housecleaning that needs to be done. If I'm really on a roll, I'll start writing again after dinner.

What do you enjoy doing when you aren't writing?
Reading, and watching movies and TV.

Do you have any plans to continue Emilie's story?
Not at this point. The book I want to write next is a bit different.

How did you come up with the ideas for The Hollow World and The Sky World?
I had wanted to write a Jules Verne-ish story for a long time, and I had some ideas for hollow earth stories, but once I thought of making it for younger readers and came up with Emilie's character, the books just came together. After Emilie and the Hollow World, it just seemed natural to send them in the opposite direction, into space.

What three words best describe Emilie?
Gutsy, resilient, and curious.

Are there any books currently on your nightstand?
Right now I'm reading The Avalon Chanter by Lillian Stewart Carl, a contemporary mystery/ghost story. The last few books I read were Dirty Magic by Jaye Wells, Ancillary Justice by Anne Leckie, A Natural History of Dragons by Marie Brennan, and London Falling by Paul Cornell.

A huge thank you again to Martha for taking the time to stop by and answer our questions!

--Ashley & Paul

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