Sunday, January 24, 2016

Lawrence M. Schoen

Lawrence M. Schoen holds a Ph.D. in cognitive psychology and psycholinguistics. He’s also one of the world’s foremost authorities on the Klingon language, and the publisher of a speculative fiction small press, Paper Golem. He’s been a finalist for the John W. Campbell Award, the Hugo Award, and the Nebula Award. Schoen lives near Philadelphia.

His new novel is Barsk: The Elephants' Graveyard.

Recently I asked the author about what he was reading. Schoen's reply:
For the last several years, I’ve set myself a challenge over on my Goodreads page to read 50 books. I tend to focus on my favorite authors, writer friends, and highly recommended titles by readers whose tastes have been shown to parallel my own. But come November that sort of free will takes a backseat and I focus on reading for the year’s award nominations (specifically the Nebula first, and the Hugo after).

It’s an incredibly strong year and I think we’re going to see some fierce races. So what follows are some of the things that I’ve read in the last couple of weeks that really amazed and delighted me.

Laura Anne Gilman’s Silver on the Road is possibly the best thing she’s written to date. It features a strong female protagonist in a weird west setting, vivid imagery and compelling worldbuilding.

Debut novelist Fran Wilde’s Updraft is a different coming-of-age tale including wings, secrets, and invisible monsters; I think it’s a shoe-in for this year’s Norton award, and you can quote me.

An author that I’d somehow missed before now is Kelly Robson. Her novella “Waters of Versailles” was so deft that I think it may be the very best novella I’ve read all year.

Two novelettes really got my attention: Christopher Kastensmidt’s “The Discommodious Wedding” is the latest in his The Elephant and the Macaw Banner series and a vivid blend of European and New World sensibilities, while Keffy R. M. Kehrli’s “And Never Mind the Watching Ones” manages to be both surreal and breathtaking at the same time.
Visit Lawrence M. Schoen's website and Twitter perch.

--Marshal Zeringue