2020/07/28

Dragon Con Interview

Dragon Con Logo

Recently the folks at Dragon Con interviewed a number of Dragon Award-winning authors, including me, They asked a series of writing-related questions via email and will be showcasing various authors' answers in a series of posts on their web site.

Here are some highlights from their first post.
Now in its sixth year, the Dragon Con hosted Dragon Awards has proven to be the defining “must” list for the greatest in genre novels, media, comics, and games. While the world is locked inside, members and fans have turned to past award winners to build their reading lists.
We reached out to eight winners and asked them to talk about their award-winning novels, their other works, the Dragon Awards ceremony, and what they have coming up that they would like to share. We are sharing their responses over this three-part interview series. Those winners are:

  • Claudia Gray, 2018 winner of Best Media Tie-In Novel with Leia: Princess of Alderaan; 2017 nominee in Best Young Adult with Defy the Stars; 2019 nominee in Best Media Tie-In Novel with Master & Apprentice
  • S.M. Stirling, 2019 winner of Best Alternate History Novel with Black Chamber; 2016 nominee in Best Apocalyptic Novel with The Desert and the Blade; 2018 nominee in Best Alternate History Novel with The Sea Peoples
  • Nick Cole, 2016 winner of Best Apocalyptic Novel with Ctrl Alt Revolt!; 2019 co-nominee in Best Military Science Fiction or Fantasy Novel with Order of the Centurion (written with Jason Anspach)
  • Brian Niemeier, 2016 winner of Best Horror Novel with Souldancer; 2017 nominee in Best Science Fiction Novel with The Secret Kings
  • Richard Fox, 2017 winner of Best Military Science Fiction or Fantasy Novel with Iron Dragoons
  • Larry Correia, 2016 winner of Best Fantasy Novel with Son of the Black Sword; 2017 winner of Best Fantasy Novel with Monster Hunter Memoirs: Grunge (written with John Ringo); 2019 winner of Best Fantasy Novel with House of Assassins
  • Kevin J. Anderson, 2018 winner of Best Alternate History Novel with Uncharted (written with Sarah A. Hoyt)
  • Harry Turtledove, 2017 winner of Best Alternate History Novel with Fallout: The Hot War; 2016 nominee in Best Alternate History Novel with Bombs Away: The Hot War

All entertainment-focused. All best sellers. Much better company than the latest round of World Con participant ribbon winners. It's no wonder that the Dragons have supplanted the Hugos as greater sci fi fandom's go-to reading list.

The Dragon winners' answers to one question in particular sheds some light on why:
... what drives you to do what you do? What makes you an award-winning author and not a corporate executive or bricklayer?
Richard Fox: Why am I a full-time writer? Because my writing pays the bills. I write to get stories out of my head and there’s really no end to what’s available for me to write. Plus, it’s so much fun! I get to sit down and plot out an intricate storyline and bring that to fruition. On occasion, I’ll get a message from a reader thanking me for making their morning commute that much more bearable, or a doctor telling me they read my books to unwind from their job. Knowing that readers and listeners enjoy my stories so much is the best thing, really. I write to entertain, and that’s always first and foremost when I’m at work. 
Brian Niemeier: There’s no such thing as an aspiring writer. We’re defined by what we repeatedly do. You could be the world’s biggest music enthusiast, know the workings of a piano inside and out, and have every piece of sheet music ever composed committed to memory, but you’re not a pianist until you sit down and actually play the piano with skill. I’m a writer because I write as a matter of habit with skill. 
Claudia Gray: It’s actually hard for me to answer this, because I was never truly “driven” to do anything else. I DID do a lot of something elses, from law to marketing to journalism, but this is the only work that’s ever compelled me. It’s the best job I’ve ever had.
Read the rest here.

And be sure to read the Dragon Award-winning horror-adventure novel Souldancer!

Souldancer - Brian Niemeier

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