This week we’re joined by the delightful and provocative Kim Stanley Robinson, to discuss his new novel New York 2140, his “comedy of coping” about dealing with catastrophic climate change in the next century, as well as how his previous novel Aurora challenged one of the cherished ideas in science fiction, the literary and artistic function of exposition in fiction, the relationship of science fiction writers to “futurists” or to MFA programs in creative writing, and his own distinguished career in the context of both science fiction and contemporary environmental literature.
As always, our thanks to Stan for making the time to tallk to us. We hope you enjoy the episode and will be back next week!
I find myself less and less happy with social media, so I’m going to try (again) to blog here with some reliability. I may even try to get the blog to push posts over to social media and let it rest at that for the moment. Or I won’t.
Slow start to Saturday. Last night was the eldest daughter’s Prom. She was lovely and I was very proud of her: she seemed to have a good time. While she was at the Prom I got news that it looks like I’ve sold a new book, which is nice. I also started to watch a new Netflix documentary series, Five Came Back, which seems terrific.
What else? Coffee, toast and confusion this morning.
Well, the time has come. I have just recently delivered the manuscript for my latest anthology, Infinity Wars. It’s the sixth book in the ‘Infinity Project’ and while I’m waiting on copyedits for this one I’m already pushing ahead on the seventh.
Infinity Wars will be out in the world in September of this year, so you’ll be hearing plenty about it from me in the coming months. For the moment, here’s the table of contents:
Introduction, Jonathan Strahan
Evening of the Span of Their Days, Carrie Vaughn
The Last Broadcasts, An Owomoyela
Faceless Soldiers, Patchwork Ship, Caroline M Yoachim
Dear Sarah, Nancy Kress
The Moon is Not a Battlefield, Indrapramit Das
Perfect Gun, Elizabeth Bear
Oracle, Dominica Phettaplace
In Everlasting Wisdom, Aliette deBodard
Command and Control, David D. Levine
Conversations with an Armory, Garth Nix
Overburden, Genevieve Valentine
Heavies, Rich Larson
Weather Girl, E.J. Swift
Mines, Eleanor Arnason
ZeroS, Peter Watts
And here’s the cover text:
We have always fought. Tales of soldiers and war go back to the very roots of our history, to the beginnings of the places we call home. And science and technology have always been inextricably linked with the deadly art of war, whether through Da Vinci’s infamous machineries of war or the Manhattan Project’s world-ending bombs or distant starships fighting unknowable opponents.
Oppenheimer once wrote that “the atomic bomb made the prospect of future war unendurable. It has led us up those last few steps to the mountain pass; and beyond there is a different country.” But unendurable or not, future always comes. War was integral to science faction at its birth and remains so today, whether on the page or on the screen.
Infinity Wars asks one question: what would Oppenheimer’s different country be like? Who would fight it? Because at the end of it all, it always come down to a soldier alone, risking life and limb to achieve a goal that may never really make sense at all. How would those soldiers feel? What would they experience?
Infinity Wars tells the tale of soldiers, on the ground and fighting, in the near future and in the farthest reaches of space, using the latest technologies and facing the oldest of fears. New original military science fiction from Eleanor Arnason, Elizabeth Bear, Indrapramit Das, Aliette de Bodard, Nancy Kress, Rich Larson, David Levine, Garth Nix, An Owomoyela, Dominica Phettaplace, E.J. Swift, Genevieve Valentine, Carrie Vaughn, Peter Watts, and Caroline M. Yoachim that will leave you on the edge of your seat.
My sincere thanks to all of the fabulous authors who have written such great stories and agreed to be part of the whole Infinity madness.
That sounds a bit grandiose, doesn’t it? We’re back rambling, and this week we discuss some of our recent reading (Jonathan finished reading his second novel of the year!!), Gary’s convention, the history of the Crawford Award, voting, and Gary’s new History of Science Fiction. There’s rambling, diversions, and parts of the conversation that just trrail off into the ether, as you might expect.
As always, our thanks to everyone and we hope you enjoy the podast. More next week.
This week Gary is in Orlanda, Florida for the International Conference on the Fantastic Arts. Despite being thousands of miles away, across aligator-infested waters, he took the time to sit down with long-time friends of the podcast John Kessel and James Patrick Kelly to discuss John’s new novel The Moon and the Other (Saga Press, April) and Jim’s new novel, Mother Go, which will be out from Audible later this year. As always happens on Coode Street, the conversation started on new books, new publishers, and publishing methods, and wandered far and wide.
As always, our sincere thanks to John and Jim for making the time to join us. We hope you enjoy the episode and will be back with more next week!