Author Archives: Cat

About Cat

Cat Rambo lives, writes, and teaches by the shores of an eagle-haunted lake in the Pacific Northwest. Her 200+ fiction publications include stories in Asimov's, Clarkesworld Magazine, and the magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction. Her story, "Five Ways to Fall in Love on Planet Porcelain," from her collection Near + Far (Hydra House Books), was a 2012 Nebula nominee. Her editorship of Fantasy Magazine earned her a World Fantasy Award nomination in 2012. She is the current President of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA). She is currently working on Exiles of Tabat, the third book of the Tabat Quartet. A new story collection, Neither Here Nor There, appears from Hydra House this fall.

Guidelines for Guest Blog Posts

Because I’ve run a number of guest posts on my blog and get offered additional ones from time to time, here’s the guidelines. I prefer they fall into one of the following areas but I’m open to interesting pitches: Interesting … Continue reading

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You Should Read This: Some Recent Reading

Post-Nebulas, I’ve been going through and trying to clear away a lot from my shelves and TBR list, particularly given that I still had a substantial armload from ICFA. Here’s some particular recent favorites.
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My Report: Pittsburgh 2017 Nebula Conference

I got back late last night, after a trip back that included a lost reservation, my luggage being overweight (how could that be? oh, look at all those books) so I had to repack a bit at the counter under the check-in agent’s impatient gaze, and the poor kid beside me throwing up steadily all the way from PIT to IAD. It’s always weird, the day after travel, because one feels as though you’ve been simultaneously on vacation and yet working harder than most days.

I cannot begin to enumerate all the ways that weekend was wonderful. It was a great joy to see months and months of planning finally bear fruit and now we can relax for at least a couple days before thinking about next year. The programming was, in my opinion, outstanding. My only quarrel would be that there was so much good stuff that I could not get to every panel I wanted to, and that I could not spend enough time with the fabulous SFWA events team of Kate Baker, Terra LeMay, and Steven H Silver, who are responsible for everything that was wonderful.

One of the challenges for the Programming Team, led by Mary Robinette Kowal, was making sure the programming had something for all writers, whether they were tradpub, small press, indie, or hybrid. There were so many terrific, in-depth panels, including a wealth of shadow programming additions and office hours with writers and other publishing professionals. It made me think back to a Nebula from several years when I was on a lackadaisical panel about writers block that was, I think, so much less useful than it could have been and realize just how far the Nebula Conference has come from the days of “let’s all get together in a hotel and hand out the awards and then drink a lot.”
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Cussin’ in Secondary Worlds

Cussin’ in Secondary Worlds Saturday, June 10, 9:30-11:30 AM Pacific Time Cursewords, expletives, and more – those things your characters say when nothing else will do – tells you more about the world (including issues of class, cultural taboos, and … Continue reading

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Guest Post from Carrie Patel: Whose Story Is This, Anyway? – Character Craft for Novels and Games

Growing up, two of my favorite things were books and video games. If you’d told me twenty years ago that I’d grow up to write both, I probably would have choked on my Mountain Dew.

But over the past few years, I’ve been doing exactly that. I’ve written the Recoletta series, a science fantasy trilogy published by Angry Robot, and I’ve worked as a narrative designer at Obsidian Entertainment for three and a half years now, writing for the Pillars of Eternity games and expansions.

The implementation, however, often differs, simply because the user experience between a linear, tightly-paced novel and an open-ended, exploration-heavy game differs. At the end of the day, the writer’s goal is always to draw her audience into a world and its story, and the best tools remain engaging characters and consistency between the big picture and the little details.
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Playlist for Female Leaders

Women in leadership positions face a lot of unwonted and unwanted bullshit. Self care’s important, both physically and mentally. Here, for your weekend, is some music. This is some of the playlist I listen to when walking.
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Nattering Social Justice Cook: Time to Fix the Missing Stair

The following is my personal opinion and unconnected to any SFWA activity. I am speaking as a member of the speculative fiction community, one that has been involved in it for a decade and a half now, and one that has watched its internal workings with interest.

I met Monica Valentinelli in 2016 at GenCon. I don’t know her well, but I’m proud to count her as a friend and she is one of the people I have consulted with about issues gamewriters face and what SFWA can do to assist them. She has been a valued bridge-builder, and I trust her judgment. For those who don’t know about the recent events prompting this essay, here is her account of the event as well as some reactions.

Monica is currently being punished for speaking out, with vitriol, suggested boycotts, and more, all for going public about her decision. Forces with an interest in women not speaking out have decided to make her a cautionary tale, particularly since she’s dared to lead to other people, including men, to follow her example.
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Nattering Social Justice Cook: Supporting The Next Generation

If you don’t know about DonorsChoose, it’s a great program that lets you support individual classroom projects. I sponsored one in honor of my aunt Nona. Here’s the lovely thank you note I just got.
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Upping the Number of Plunkett Slots

Something I’m trying to do this year is pay things forward as much as possible. Recent technological upgrades means I can now fit more than 8-9 people in a class (can now handle up to twice that many, which is more suited to some classes than others), so I figured one way to do that is to make more class slots available to people who couldn’t otherwise afford the class.

So, each class now has three Plunkett scholarship slots, the third of which is specifically reserved for QUILTBAG and POC applicants. Everyone is encouraged to apply, but I want to make sure it’s getting to a diverse range. The only qualification for a Plunkett is this: you would not be able to afford the class otherwise. Just mail me with the name/date of the class and 1-3 sentences about why you want to take it.
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Where I’ll Be: Norwescon 2017

Thursday What is a Story? 3:00pm – 4:00pm @ Cascade 9 Marta Murvosh (M), Cat Rambo, Curtis C. Chen, Nancy Kress, James C. Glass SFWA: What is it, Where is it Going, and Why Should You Care? 6:00pm – 7:00pm … Continue reading

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