Monday, December 20, 2004


Liz Williams lives in Brighton, England, and is the author of five novels, with more books coming out soon. (She's also one of the doctors contributing to this, and has participated in many of the associated medical conference readings.) Her latest two books are The Banquet of the Lords of Night (Night Shade Books)...

...and Banner of Souls (Bantam Spectra).

Banquet is Williams' first story collection and is overdue from a multiple Philip K. Dick Award finalist. Banquet fully showcases Williams' restless, eclectic nature in 18 tales that span a wide spectrum, from fantasy to SF to unclassifiable cross-genre work. Lush, romantic, witty, and dark, many of these tales first appeared in Asimov's SF Magazine, Realms of Fantasy, or Interzone. Highly recommended--and available direct from the Night Shade site.

Banner of Souls, meanwhile, is Williams' highly lauded new novel, out from Bantam Spectra, blurbed by such rising stars as K.J. Bishop and Charles Stross. Here's part of the Publishers Weekly review: "In the far future, when the only males are dangerous "men-remnants" hunted by Martian warriors, and women are not born but made, what counts as human is far different from what we would think today. On the planet Nightshade, a mysterious clan of humans has joined with aliens to become stranger still. The women of Earth and Mars mainly know of the sinister doings on Nightshade through the use of "haunt-tech"—powerful objects possessed by spirits of the dead. While Lunae, an Earth girl with special gifts, tries to manipulate time and save humanity from an unnamed threat, an experimental woman, Yskatarina Iye, is sent from Nightshade to destroy her and the warrior Dreams-of-War sets out from Mars to protect her. Within this universe there are a great many grand, creepy creations, such as weather-controlling Dragon Kings and the murderous scissor-women. Readers who aren't put off by the mind-bending oddness of Williams's universe will find themselves rapidly flipping the pages." But mind-bending oddness is a good thing!

As is, subjecting thyself to...the five questions...


Why should readers pick up your book as opposed to, say, just about anybody else's book?
Anybody else's books do not have a dancing pink elephant on the cover.

Does your book have any socially redeeming qualities? If so, what are they?
1. If you MUST be a stripper, remember to stop at your epidermis. 2. When staying in a Greek monastery, seducing mysterious young men is always a bad idea. 3. Even if you are a demon, listen to your sister. See? Highly moral tales.

Does your book have any medicinal or mental health value to readers?
God, I hope not.

Assume your book has been filed under "Ages 8 to 12" in the children's section, perhaps by mistake, perhaps not. How horrified do you imagine a child would be after reading your book, and why? How many years of therapy would the child take to recover from the experience?
This actually happened to me, via a temporal loop. I read my own future stories at the age of 9, and have been quite dreadfully scarred as a result.

If no one buys your book and you are unable to continue publishing your fiction due to the intense vilification that occurs in the media, what line of work will you go into?
A close friend and I plan to open an Emporium for the sale of laudanum in Murano glass bottles. Just in time for Christmas.


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