Wanna ask me any quessies?

I’m in the middle of updating my website to accommodate the imminent arrival of my next two books, Magic Lessons, the sequel to Magic or Madness, and Daughters of Earth, an anthology of feminist science fiction stories and essays. The lovely Deborah Biancotti is making it all look pretty.

Claire Light’s brilliant FAQ has reminded me that I need to update my own. So anyone got any questions for me that aren’t there already? About the books? About the writing life? About whatever. Fire away!


  1. claire on #

    Q1: how do I marry a successful writer from another continent so I can spend half the year elsewhere and get free writing advice?

    Q2: how do i smuggle flying foxes into the states, if the previous doesn’t work?

    Q3: how do i get a cool accent like that in the meantime?

  2. Justine on #

    1: hang out at science fiction conventions. Though I gotta point out I was travelling back and forth between the US and Australia long before I met Scott. You don’t need a man to do it, Claire!

    2. I cannot aid you in any illegal activities.

    3. Sweetie, you already have a cool accent.

  3. shelly rae on #

    1. What is the name of the place in Mexico with the cool dia de muerte bathrooms tiles?

    2. How much does it cost to stay there?

    3. How do I make a reservation?

    4. Are you ever coming to the Seattle area?

  4. Justine on #

    1. San Miguel de Allende.

    2. The house we rented is insane expensive and one of the many reasons we are still in debt. But there are much cheaper places.

    3. What am I? A travel agent?!

    4. Actually, it looks like we’re going to be there in October.

  5. Rachel Brown on #

    Describe the mangosteen.

  6. Jason Erik Lundberg on #

    1. How did you and Scott meet?

    2. Is there ever any jealousy associated with the successes that either you might have?

    3. What was the most interesting thing that happened to you last year?

    4. Will you be at WisCon?

  7. Justine on #

    Rachel: in order to answer your question adequately requires a whole new post involving scarcity and Cape Tribulation. Hope you don’t mind waiting.

    Jason: 1. It’s really boring, actually. We were just in the same geeky sf circles in NYC.

    2. Oh sure, seems like just about everyone is jealous of us! There are scads of writers who turn so green when they see us I worry that they might explode. They can’t stand to hear about our Aurealis nominations (the award ceremony’s tomorrow), all the best books of the years lists we both make, the fact that we can both spit much further than pretty much any other genre writers. I think those writers really need to learn to relax a bit. Yes me and Scott have achieved a lot, but you’re not doing so badly yourself!

    3. Magic or Madness being sold to Taiwanese, French, German and Thai publishers. It’s so amazing that my book has this whole new life in other languages.

    4. Yup me and a thousand of my closest friends.

  8. Scott on #

    where is my passport? i need it to get on the airplane tomorrow. (for, you see, she is my wife.)

  9. Ben Payne on #

    Hey Justine,

    I guess I’ve only known you (in the sense of reading your stuff) for a couple of years, so excuse my ignorance, but I’d like to know a little about your academic work… like, I know I could just read the books (and I will), but I guess I’m more interested in how you got interested in it, what your driving forces are in that area.

    Only if you feel like discussing it, of course…

  10. Ben Payne on #

    Oh, and (2), how did you get into cricket, and do you have a favorite test series…?

    (hehe…. i feel like such a geek asking that question…)

  11. Justine on #

    Scott: bummer on your not knowing where your passpart is. Looks like I’l be flying to Brisbane alone.

    Ben: 1. As it happens I have a piece here which explains how I fell into researching and writing about science fiction. It was kind of an accident.

    I can’t say that I miss academia. Everything I loved about it—the research and talking about ideas with like-minded colleagues—I still have with all my writing mates. And now when I write up my research I’m not cramped by the annoying generic constraints of scholarly writing (back up everything, be cautious, second guess any possible counter arguments etc etc). Fiction is a lot more fun. So now I’m a novelist with kickarse research skills.

    2. I honestly don’t remember ever not liking cricket. i grew up in a family where summer was the sound of the ABC’s cricket commentary. I still remember what Allen McGilvray sounded like . . .

    I became obsessed with Keith Miller when I was still a teenager, but I didn’t really start reading lots of cricket history until a few years ago. If I was stuck on a desert island and could only have one genre I might well pick cricket books. I loves them.

    Oddly, enough, I have never played, only watched. Just as well really: I have a history of breaking things (usually my own bones) every time I take up a new sport. I even managed to break a toe when I took up squad swimming . . . That’s why these days I tend to stick to yoga.

  12. Diana Peterfreund on #

    can you tell me in what way cricket is remotely interesting? 1. am i too dumb to comprehend its oblique, fascinating qualities? 2. is it a mental block? 3. a cultural deficiency?

  13. rachel brown on #

    Do you know any cute, smart, heterosexual male writers– you know, kind of like scott– who are not in a relationship and like short memoirists with glasses?

  14. Justine on #

    Diana: You’ve been warned about the rules of this blog before, missy! Cricket is sacred and aspersions will not be cast against it!

    1. No. There are many dim people who understand the noble sport. And you, Ms Peterfreund, are not dim.

    2. Sounds like.

    3. Nope. Scott not only adores cricket, but is now as knowledgable about its rules, play and strategy as me. I correspond with another USian cricket afficionado, Bob Harris, and know many other yanquis who are also fascinated by the game.

    Rachel: Hmmm, it’s the hetrosexual part that’s tricky. Speshly in Sydney. Growing up here, I honestly didn’t realise there were any interesting straight men until I was in my late twenties. I will, however, keep my eyes open.

  15. marrije on #

    1. you mentioned starting about five new novels when you should have been busy finishing m!m!m!o!o!o!. anything good/promising in there?
    2. what’s next for you (apart from discovering lots of fun facts about jetlag)? the elvis novel?
    3. what are you reading now?

  16. shana on #

    when’s your birthday?

    oh, and consider rachel’s question seconded.. except for the memoirists bit. and short. and actively wearing the glasses. but, you know.

  17. Justine on #

    Marrije: 1) it was three new novels (but five different endings to the book—the way the current rewrites are going could well wind up being six different endings). At the moment I think all three of them are promising. Much more promising (and enticing) than MorM 3 . .

    2) Yup, the great Australian Elvis mangosteen cricket novel is next up. Can’t wait to finish it. I’ve discovered that I really love writing comedy. So much more fun than tragedy!

    3) Guns, Germs and Steel. It’s amazing!

    Shana: In September. The very best month of all no matter where you live. My answer to Rachel holds for you. For what it’s worth . . .

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