Hi there.  I’m Sarah A. Hoyt.  I am a novelist with (I think) twenty three novels out.  There might be more, as I haven’t counted recently.  I could tell you what genres I write in, but that is liable to change on very short notice.

So far I haven’t written pure romance, hard sci fi or man’s adventure.  However my unofficial motto is “no genre is safe from me.”  To find out more about what I’ve done to various innocent tropes and subgenres, look under “my books.”  Unfortunately my webpage is down right now because younger son was working on it and then something happened.

Of trains, publishers and agency pricing

For more and links to buy my books, look under the “my books” tab, next to this one.  All purchases appreciated, because unfortunately writers have to eat and keep a roof over their heads while writing.

I want to request if possible that you don’t leave comments on this page or the “My books” page.  To delete any comments but the ones on the main page takes me forever, and I just wasted an hour doing it.  Even so, I can’t delete all of them, except one by one.  I appreciate “fan letters” of course, and I do answer your requests for help, but it truly is much easier if you just comment on whatever the day’s post is!

232 thoughts on “About

  1. Dear Sarah,

    Many thanks for reading and responding so passionately to my piece about publishing in Forbes. The reality is that there are more of them than there are of you and me, in that you and I pay for content and others don’t, or won’t in the future. Maybe I’m as wrong as you say. But my first name is Michael, not Mark, so perhaps we both have a right to be wrong! I enjoyed your piece and am glad that you saw fit to write about it. Warmly, Mark no wait Michael

    1. Yes, I corrected that. My fingers have a mind of their own. Possibly because a friend named Michael was annoying me at the time, and well… I could only take a Michael at a time. (Troublemakers all! )

      I do think you are wrong — as it’s obvious. Look at the music industry. The trajectory is very similar and while there are many, many people pirating music, the majority of people buy it. Part of it, of course, is that music has gotten much cheaper. I suspect books will too. Of course, it’s awfully hard to make predictions about the future, particularly when it hasn’t happened yet.

      Nice to meet you, and thank you for your gracious response.

  2. Hi, Sarah. I discovered your blog by following Stephen Green’s link, read several entries, and enjoyed it so much that I want to add it to my must-read list. But there’s a problem. The way I “follow” blogs is by using an RSS reader. Unfortunately, your blog doesn’t seem to have an RSS feed — or if it does, I can’t find it.

    I’m pretty sure that the RSS feed is a WordPress option that you can turn on. Would you do that, please, so that I can read all your new posts as soon as they appear? Thanks.

  3. Actually, you do. I eventually found it by hacking the URL (by which I mean appending “/rss” to it). The problem was that no link to the RSS feed appears on your blog page, and since Firefox doesn’t see any link, it doesn’t display the RSS icon in the address bar.

      1. Today when I took a notion to add you to my RSS feed, I found I had to click the little RSS icon to be taken to the right page; the obvious text link went back to the home page. [scratching head]

  4. Just a “heads up” if no one else has let you know: Death of a Musketeer by Sarah D’Almeida is mentioned by Carolyn Hart in Dare to Die. It is the inspiration for one of the watercolors in the bookshop.

  5. Dear Sarah,
    Introduced to you by reading Insta and went to this site and saw two Paul Simon quotes immediately! Now I am hooked. minor quibble with American Tune, though–“Oh, we come on the ship they call the Mayflower
    We come on the ship that sailed the moon”

  6. Sarah,

    I came over from Instapundit- I really enjoyed your posts there and wanted to hear more from you ( sorry if that sounds creepy). I’m looking forward to reading your fiction as I try to wash the bad taste of the election away. Thanx in advance !

  7. Sarah: Like other posters, I started reading your blogging over at Instapundit. Great stuff there and so much more here! It’s very valuable to get insights from a working, published author on the emerging self-publishing landscape. Hard to tell sometimes if it’s really crumbling barriers to entry or just generally crumbling the walls around everyone.

    Anyway, since this is the only “open forum” I can find on the blog, allow me to throw out a completely random question late this quiet evening. I’ve read and enjoyed the Horatio Hornblower novels over the years (haven’t tackeld the Master and Commander series yet). They’ve really fed by general interest in military sci-fi. I’ve wondered if there is a similar sea-faring adventure novel or character set in the Portuguese or Spanish navies. English literature is obviously focused on the British Navy, but Portugal and Spain had world-spanning enterprises of their own. Since you grew up in Portugal, maybe you know of any books or authors I might look into (translated, that is)?

    1. Not that I know of. Portuguese concept of novels is different, anyway.

      I made a joke at a con, once, about the discoveries in a fantasy world, and Kevin J. Anderson ran with , but I don’t THINK he kept it with a Portuguese background. (I’ve been so insanely busy the last few years I haven’t read them yet.)

  8. So I broke down and bought Darkship Thieves today. My daughter had gotten me one of the Monster Hunter novels. Unfortunately it was the same one she had gotten for my birthday, so I took it back to B&A and they happily exchanged it.

    1. Daughters with bad memories are boons to struggling writers. Though I’ll confess we’re up to four copies of MHI because the kids like it, and when the kids like something, we need four copies. Well, we do if we ever want to see it…

  9. Sarah –

    I just sent you a Facebook friend request, and discovered that FB no longer allows me to explain _how_ I know someone. I first discovered your writing through Baen and Instapundit, and more recently this Blog. I was curious what part of Colorado you lived in, and discovered that from Facebook. I have found your commentary here and on Instapundit much that aligns with my thinking, and would love to meet in person. Do you ever do public appearances here in Colorado?

  10. Sarah, just a word of thanks. Your constant harping about indie publishing pushed me off my @ss. I got my novel (Iron Magic) correctly formatted, finally, found cover art and made a nice cover, and got it up on Amazon Kindle. 90+ sales in a couple of weeks, pretty good for a newbie with no name and no adverts beyond Facebooking friends. May even make a believer out of my wife.

    1. Well — I SWEAR I’m going to do a commenter promo post Saturday. (I haven’t, because I’ve either been ill or very busy every weekend.) TxRed has a new book out. On Saturday comment with the link to your book, and I’ll try to get everything ready and list all ya’ll’s books.

      And welcome to the rank of those of us not to afraid to dive in.

  11. I found you at Eric Scheie (Classical Values) and then via Instapundit, ordered AFGM and read it out loud to my blind godmother. We both became instant fans and I’ve been reading your blog to her for a couple of months now, as well as more of your books (DOITD presently underway). If you could just know how much joy you are giving two rather isolated people… The only thing I can think of that we could offer is editing services, gratis of course… I have experience in editing translations (from Georgian) into idiomatic English, and Brigid excels in punctuation and resolving indefinite references. Together, we are a good team. Let us know if we can be of service.

          1. Sorry to hear that. Such weeks seem to be going around. I shall wait until you have your quidelines posted, and then submit to that email.

            Thanks again and best wishes for a better week!

  12. Hello Sarah,

    I was wondering if you had some recommendations for scifi novels for a 10 year old 5th grade boy. My youngest has to turn in regular book reports and I would like him to read something other than fantasy or dystopian scifi novels. I’d like something along the lines of Asimov’s Bicentennial Man which he cannot use because it is a collection of short stories.

    He has already done the first Harry Potter, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Meryl Yourish’s Darkness Rising. This week its the first Three Investigators book.

    Any suggestions would be appreciated.


    1. Look at Diana Wynne Jones, particularly the Chrestomanci novels, and also some of the Heinlein juveniles wear surprisingly well. My now 18 year old at that age loved Red Planet, Have Spacesuit Will Travel, Citizen of the Galaxy and The Star Beast.

  13. Burroughs’ John Carter books (A Princess of Mars, et al) are good for that age. I also enjoyed _Alan Mendelsohn, the Boy from Mars_ when I was about that age.

    There was another book, about a television-addicted boy whose grandfather could do magic, and who had to figure it out for himself after he interrupted his grandpa and got him exiled to another universe. Set in present time, more or less. Can’t remember the name of it for the life of me.

    1. _The Magic Grandfather_, by Jay Williams! That was it.

      I need to track that and Boy from Mars down again. Those were fun.

  14. Because reading levels are so variable across time — what was once Sixth grade is now HS Senior, in my op — that recommendations can be tricksy. Susan Cooper’s “The Dark Is Rising” series, like Lloyd Alexander’s Chronicles of Prydain might be a bit of a reach but are well worth the effort (although they might risk instilling a love for Welsh legendry.) Terry Pratchett’s Johnny Maxwell trilogy is well-suited for what I take as the level you’re indicating. At that age I was reading Bullfinch, Verne & Wells, so am possibly not the best benchmark.

    Asimov’s Lucky Star books ought be suitable, ‘though it’s long since I read them. I suspect a large number of Golden Age books are suitable for the reading level, although the trick is to find the ones he is enamored enough of to stretch for; look at Poul Anderson’s 3 Hearts and 3 Lions, or Pratt & De-Camp’s Harold Shea books. Christopher Stasheff’s The Warlock In Spite of Himself would have some things that fly above his radar but has a sufficiently straight-forward storyline he might well enjoy it and it would serve as good grounding against politically correct nonsense.

  15. I considered that, but because many boys of a certain age are reluctant to get involved in a book with a female protagonist, I decided Johnny Maxwell was the better entry point.

    Because that is what we are talking about, isn’t it? Once he starts reading Pratchett there’s no turning back. (The Nome Trilogy — aka The Bromeliad Trilogy in the US — also serves as an entry point for the young.)

  16. Thanks for your suggestions. It looks like I need to blow the dust off of my Heinlein novels. I have also downloaded a sample of the John Maxwell series and ordered a Lucky Starr novel. I’ll let you know how it goes.


  17. I ought have thought of this last night: good children’s (adult, too, for that matter) books from long ago are a form of time machine, and need to be read and understood as such. For SF novels such as the Lucky Star & Heinlein books there is not only the difference in the future described (sliderules still in use!) but the difference in the past; the perspectives are those of a different era and reflect different expectations. This ranges not only from the major — world government (an idea I gather Heinlein gave up on after touring the USSR) — to the minor — what was proper for boys (and girls) to do.

    When presenting those “ancient” texts to your son it might be wise to suggest that, just as the Greek, Roman, Norse, Egyptian etc. myths reflect the understanding of the world by those long gone cultures, so do books from SF’s past (and present, for that matter, albeit less obviously) reflect the understanding of the world in those (and our) days.

    It might minimize certain kinds of complaints to which youth are prone (Dad! This stupid book has them looking for a pay phone!) and encourage thoughtfulness.

    1. Sarah — please remind me, when life is less encouraging of my character development, of my above comment, with the suggestion I compose a guest comment on the topic of reading old books. Or develop the theme yourself, or farm it to another (TXRed or Celia Hayes might develop it interestingly.)

      There might even be a “side” post there on how the future was invented, building off the Star Trek communicators stimulating the invention of flip phones, for example. Before we can build we must first be able to envision.

  18. Howdy,

    I have now read all your books. Good stuff! Thank you. I have a daughter who is dyslexic and therefore is a heavy ‘reader’ of audible books. I see that the Darkship series has started to be converted to audible. She would really enjoy the Shifters series. Are there plans to audibilize them?

    1. I don’t know. They are being re-launched. We’ll keep our fingers crossed, shall we?
      I understand your daughter, my younger son had sensory issues and his first enjoyable “reads” were listened to.

  19. Sarah,
    Are you willing to give an unpublished author some advice about indie publishing? I’d like to tell you about my project and get some direction as to how to develop it for sale.


    1. If you mean advise you on the mechanics of putting stuff up and where to put it — I’ve been doing columns for PJM on that. If you mean answering questions like “is this more saleable” sure, if you accept that I have not a clue on most of them. If you mean book doctoring a novel, no. I wouldn’t be very good at it — I’m a lousy editor. I might be able to get you in touch with someone, though.

  20. Dear Ms. Hoyt

    I would like to take this opportunity to thank you. It was your post several years ago about how to write dialog (two people sitting around a kitchen table) that got me interested in writing fiction again. It relit a flame that had been snuffed out thirty years earlier. Your explanation and easy guidance seemed to open a window and let in a ray of understanding. Rarely can we point to that one minor moment that changed our lives. That one event that converted us into the person we would become. I can point to reading your blog post.

    I have followed your blog entries and your PJ articles religiously. Your links to other writers and other points of view have been invaluable in my learning experience as I try to grow and become better at my craft. Writing has opened my world and led me to people and places I would never have discovered and filled me with a sense of accomplishment. Most of all, it has been fun. I enjoy it immensely, getting lost in writing the stories I would like to read has enriched my life tremendously.

    I have just finished writing my third novel all because of your inspiration and guidance. They have gotten some nice comments from agents and editors, nothing to write home about, but positive comments that encourage me to continue. If that doesn’t work out I will go the self-publishing route. I realize this is a long journey, but it is a trip I would not have taken without your help and guidance. Thank you for all that you have done for me. I just wanted you to know that you have had a tremendously positive impact on at least one person out there. Thank you.


    Gary L. Snodgrass

  21. How does one go about submitting a recommendation? I have a friend whose novel Armageddon Girl (super-hero, crosstime adventure) could use a good plug. For what it’s worth, I enjoyed it.

    I may have mentioned it on your blog before, in which case I apologize for the redundancy.

    1. Hm. Well, I submitted a request for how to submit a plug, and now I’ve gotten the instructions, but I originally included the title and author and an incorporated link to Amazon, but no blurb, in the request for information. Should I now re-submit all that info along with a blurb?

  22. Have you thought about becoming an Amazon.com affiliate? I buy lots of books, and if I bought them through a link on your web site, you’d pick up a little change! I’m sure others would do so too.

    1. Of course I have. And I sort of have a link through the books on the side bar of the main page. Here’s the issue: CO tried to tax Amazon. Amazon killed all the affiliate accounts in CO. I have “sort of” an affiliate account and go halves with a friend in another state.

  23. Hi. I’m a lover of books and hang out on Goodreads. I saw on your profile that you had a question of how to become a Goodreads author. As you’ve already joined Goodreads, you can claim this author profile:
    At the bottom of the page, click “Let us know” for further instructions.
    Here are some of the ways you can use Goodreads:
    – Connect with your readers and build a following of fans
    – Participate in an online Q&A session with your readers
    – Publicize upcoming events, such as book signings and speaking engagements
    – Share excerpts of any upcoming publications
    – Post videos about your books or anything you choose
    Joanne G.
    P.S. If you have any questions, I’d be happy to answer them.

  24. Oh look, a new victim supplicant mark participant! Yep, just email me a direct link to the book’s page at the address Sarah gave, and I’ll get you in this weekend’s promotion post.

  25. Not sure where else to put this. I subscribed, but nothing told me how to get my password to log in as a subscriber. Am I just suffering from selective blindness and not seeing it?

    1. No. I just didn’t see it. Send me an email to Goldportpress at gmail dot com and I’ll send it. The subscriber space has been an utter dud due to my being sick all last year and now trying to catch up but I promise two things: I’ll try to post something new every other week (at least) starting in May AND y’all get a first peek at The Machines of Magic which is between Witchfinder and Rogue Magic… Probably… it’s looking like June.

  26. “I’m not so much good-natured as vague and too lazy to be bothered much.”

    I love you – we are kin.

  27. Hi Sarah,

    I didn’t come across any other contact method so I hope it is okay to post this question here.

    I am a librarian with High Plains Library District in Weld County. I am thrilled to invite you to participate in a local author signing event called Books and Brews. We will be featuring Colorado breweries and Colorado authors to provide an opportunity for our patrons to discover both. The event will take place Saturday, October 25th from 6:00pm – 8:00pm at Zoe’s Café in downtown Greeley. This is our second year to hold the event. Last year the event drew 125+ attendees and we are planning extensive marketing measures to bring even more potential readers to meet you and discover your books. If you are interested in participating in the signing, please let me know.

    Books and Brews is part of a larger event, ReadCon, hosted by High Plains Library that is a full day event on October 25th spread throughout downtown Greeley. ReadCon is a celebration of all things readers, writers, and books. There will be several writers’ workshops, lots of hands-on fun, and presentations by creators George Guidall, Scott Sigler, and KC Wayland. You are welcome to join us for any or all of the day’s free events. Details coming soon at http://www.ReadCon.us.

    Thank you for your time and I look forward to a chance to work with you.

    Happy reading,
    Jessi Barrientos

  28. I’ve been following the Ninja Nun comic strip for some time, and just today clicked on links there and found it’s by one of your sons. Seriously odd stuff going on there, which really works for me. Don’t know whether creativity runs in the family, or crawls like Nyarlathotep, The Crawling Chaos, but it gets there.

  29. Is it true that the salt in the seas comes from the tears of the Portuguese?
    Sorry — I just had to ask that. I had some idea of making a Lusophone out of myself a couple of years back, and one of the lessons covered sad songs called “fados.”
    Anyway, I just wanted to say I enjoy your blog and I’m adding the works of Hoyt to the stack on my nightstand!

    1. My mom sang that. I was rocked to sleep by the most depressing songs imaginable. When people resent my relentless American optimism, they should keep in mind it could be MUCH worse.

  30. I looked at the Heinlein quote in your header and realized it needs an addition, to read “…intellectuals and anti-intellectuals…”. I think the intellectuals, and especially those who think they are, are worse than the anti-intellectuals. Because they KNOW they are right.

  31. I wonder what your thoughts are on this, given you’ve written articles in relation to it:

    They openly admit it’s not about sci-fi. It’s about their feelings.

    I know how Vox Day and Mr. Wright feel about this. What about you?

    1. I think it’s stupid, but it’s their right to be stupid. I also think I could write stories with more convincing gay characters than they can (and more appealing to the public.) It’s hard to get through these people’s heads that what you are is not what you write. It can be… or it can not. I wish I’d done as the blast from the past today “Why I don’t write books set in Portugal.” because I don’t, and it’s because I’m too close for it to sound real to people.
      At least some of this applies to writing whatever your experience is. Left untouched is that I only sold stories (two) set in Portugal after I’d sold about 100 shorts, even though the very first shorts I wrote were set in Portugal. That’s because fiction is a collaborative act between the writer and the reader. (Damn it. I should do this as a post.) I.e. the writer CAN’T build a whole world. you have to fill in stuff. And when the reader assumes “this is baseline normal” for things that aren’t, he’s giving you the wrong clues, and ignoring others you need to be given.
      So writing a book of queer sf by queer writers can be a disaster, unless they pick VERY GOOD and experienced writers.
      Beyond that it baffles me why I should care what a writer does in bed. Isn’t that bizarre and, yep, bigotry?
      But the saddest thing about it is that they’re writing to shock people like us who, you know, would die before reading a book with gay characters. Yep, it was really hard to write Witchfinder and a Few Good men because I couldn’t edit them at all. Couldn’t READ them.
      Sigh. Once more, they’re trying to shock people in a nineteen fifties that never existed.

    2. Heteronormative is the default because, well, that’s what most people are. Bummer that that may be, I recall a story by LS deCamp (IIRC) about a man running for his life, having been sexually involved with his host’s child. He was from New Athens…and we know about those Greek proclivities.

  32. I will purchase your books from Baen with relish.
    Besides the authors you named, I also enjoyed Andre Norton, Elizabeth Moon and Lois McMaster Build.
    And abhor the PC social warriors that massacred Olsen Scott Card.
    A new fan,
    Scott Myatt

  33. Thank you so much for recommending Filter Forge (I think both on here and in a column on PJ Media). I finally got around to buying it, and am finding it very amazingly useful for book covers and other projects.

  34. Just found your site via the posting by Lehman “Thoughts on the Road”. Comments closed on that page so I thought I’d post hear. I’ll be timely in the future.
    The problem with farmers is farmers. I am a grass fed beef farmer so I know. I’m new to the industry at 4 years and come to it from the private sector (you know, where they actually expect results).
    Farmers don’t do math. None. Haying is a great example. Usually done just to keep the fields open on leased land. Here in the “hills and hollers” our state ag uni actually did a study to find out how much minerals and nutrients are found in a hay bale (1000lb.). $26. Yep each time a farmer takes a hay bale off his farm, they remove $26 of M/N that the field actually needs. A farmer would need to add back into his soil enough “fertilizer” to restore this amount. At 3 bales/acre that is $78/acre of M/N going down the road. Add into the mix that only about 60% (best case) of your fertilizer amounts to anything you’re already up to at least $110/acre just to eliminate the loss (no growth or restoration included). Now back to the bale: add the cost of baling at $19/bale (without major breakdowns) to the $26 and your at $45, not including the $36/bale of nutrient recharge for a grand total of $80/bale +/-. All this matters only if its YOUR field. You then would have to sell each bale at $80 just to break even. No profit, no major breakdowns on equipment, no soil improvement, just maintenance. Been doing this for 10 years and your ten years depleting your soil. Its rare a normal farmer leasing land from somebody cares about depletion. Typically they just mine it till it runs dry and move on. Next time you see pretty white flowers such as Queen Ann’s Lace or Brome sedge(furry thin brown stems) just remember its a sign that the field lacks enough PH to grow good grass (you know, the stuff cows actually do eat naturally).
    Oh, and one more brain teaser: Bats don’t eat mosquitos. Nothing does. Nope not even birds. So, why do people buy bat houses to rid themselves of them?
    Keep up the good work!!
    New fan.

  35. Hi Sarah. I’m a big fan and I have to do a project for a (stupid) journalism/blogging class. I have to interview a writer and blogger, and I was wondering if you could help me out? (I tried to find an email to get in touch with you, but couldn’t, so I came here to the comments). If you can help, I just have a few (7) questions for you to answer. I know you’re busy, but let me know if you’re interested. 🙂

  36. When you speak to the Wrongthink giveaway guys, thank them from me! Well from a few of us who read your blog I would guess. And of course thank you. Although obviously I’ve read Darkship Thieves I’m hoping to win Revenge. Not actual revenge, just your book.

  37. Hi Sarah,
    I’m one of the insta-lanche herd that just discovered you. I noticed one your preamble to your short story you mention a advair giving you writers block. I’ve been on advair for about 10 years now (woot for no more silt rescue inhaler), and I’m curious if you’ve found that correlation with advair to be consistent. I’ve had a number of low level symptoms and I can’t tell if it’s the advair or something else. Thanks for your thoughts and I look forward to reading your short story.


    1. writers’ block and writers’ “things” are weird. I also can’t take anti-histamines, or of all things, nutra sweet. I’d think I was nuts, but I have friends with the same problems.
      At any rate I also get signs of allergy to advair (what can I say, my body is bizarre) so I’ll have to find something different.

  38. You might be interested in know that the opening paragraph of “Lost and Found” is a perfect illustration of one of the two ways to write. They are:

    1. Describe events from the character’s perspective, making what he or she knows is what such a person in real life would know. For example, if he’s a pilot, what he says about flying is accurate. A flight will take extensive planning, including checking the weather, finding alternative airports along the way, and so forth.

    2. Describe events from the reader’s perspective, doing nothing to draw them out of their ignorance. Flying across the Atlantic is portrayed as little different from driving the family SUV to the mall because that’s all many readers know or want to know. A plane is different only in the sense that it has lots of mysterious instruments. They live in a world filled with mysteries they don’t care to understand.

    The first two paragraphs of “Lost and Found” are a perfect illustration of #2. They claim to be the thoughts of someone who has “cared for countless patients.” They’re not. For such people, patients don’t have “various tubes entering and exiting his body.” They have “lines,” and the fact that they enter or exit is so obvious, it need not be stated. What else are they going to do, dribble fluid on the floor. And those machines aren’t “making all sorts of noises.” That’s what a untutored visitor to the room thinks. Staff soon learn what specific sounds mean. None are “noises.”

    That brings up what might be called the writer’s dilemma.

    Write as in #1, and you will satisfy readers who, while they may not fly or work in a hospital themselves, understand what it entails. Tom Clancy is a good illustration of that kind of writer.

    Write as in #2 and you’ll appeal to those who live in a bubble from which they don’t want to be removed. They may vaguely realized that the wider world isn’t quite like they imagine, but they don’t want to be exposed to that, much less learn more about it. They want flying to be like driving. They want hospitals to be mysterious places filled with “tubes” and “noises.”

    I’m clearly a #1 reader. I abandoned a thriller because a few pages in the hero left in his private jet bound for Europe with no more preparation than for going to the supermarket. Reading novels requires suspending belief. Given an error of that magnitude, I couldn’t go along with his story.

    And yes, the same is true of your “Lost and Found.” Those tubes and noises make it impossible for me to believe that the voice I’m hearing it that of an experienced health caregiver. I not only was one, I’ve written four books on healthcare.

    On the other hand, for someone without that background, your opening paragraphs sounds true-to-life. They see patients as having tubes and hospitals with noises. They imagine that those working there see the same.

    Now for the catch. Many discussions about selling books assume that everyone has the same amount of time to read, should they take it. Not so. Doers are typically so busy doing and keeping up with their field that they have less time to read. Avid readers are disproportionately those who’re doing so little, they have lots of time to read. And this is critical—when they read, they want their limited world portrayed not the more complex one they take care to avoid.

    And yes, the money is in the latter. In the last few years, I made myself read as far as I could into novels by mega-sellers like James Patterson and the rest. I found them literally repulsive for two reasons:

    1. Violence far beyond gratuitous. I’ve been around enough of the consequences, I hate it. The only ones who like it, I concluded, are sociopaths and those whose lives are so shallow, they find that violence exciting. Having never cared for someone wounded with a shotgun—I have—they find a shotgun blast to the gut gives a thrill. Sorry, but I consider that sick.

    2. Lack of realism. One thriller featured a terrorist who routinely shacked up with women and killed them when he left a city. That was supposed to ‘cover his tracks’ well. Only an utter idiot would think that. Kill someone and the police will be turning over every rock to trace you. Stay in cheap housing, talking to no one and you will be forgotten a week later.

    Sorry to have to explain why I’m not interested in reading tales like your “Lost and Found.” Yours is a perfectly legitimate way to write. But I thought you might like to comment on it on your blog. It does seem to be a great divide among writers. Write in one way and you lose readers who like the other way.

    Of course, it is possible for a writer to bridge the two worlds and satisfy both readers to some extent. Mention in passing the time a pilot spends planning his flight. Describe hospital care from the perspective of staff but genuflect to the outsider view. Then it’d be “lines” that patients call “tubes” and that what to visitors are “noises” have specific meanings. You can show an understanding of both worlds.

    1. Sigh. Take a powder, sir. I’ve written AND PUBLISHED (traditionally) 32 books.
      You remind me of the man who told me guns don’t zap.
      This is the 26th century. You know the lingo? Wow, time travelers do exist.

    2. It might interest you to know, too, that there are about 10 different ways to handle POV not “two ways to write.” I suggest Dwight Swain’s “Techniques of the selling writer.”

    3. Oh my, a bit full of ourselves, aren’t we?

      First of all, who are you to lecture Sarah about how to write? She’s been traditionally published for years, has double-digits books out and triple digits in short stories, iirc. She’s built her street cred. What’s yours? (the fact your name links to an Adobe site does nothing to make me think you have any qualification to comment on writing styles. Yes, I could Google but there are a number of Michael W. Perry’s and Michael Perry’s out there. So that tells me nothing.)

      Then to go off on why you don’t like other authors/genres? Do you, sir, comment just for the joy of seeing your words appear somewhere on the internet? Besides, what does that have to do with what Sarah wrote?

      As for being crass enough to come to a writer’s blog to critique her work. . . well, that’s beyond the pale. You don’t like it, fine. You don’t have to stay and read. Oh, but you thought she might want to comment on it. That is when you send her an email and 1) ask if she’d be interested in your take on the story and 2) if she is, they you send it. You sure as hell don’t presume to come into her virtual living room and tell her what she did wrong, especially without an invitation.

      1. To be fair if he came in and said “I’d use lines, not tubes” I MIGHT, as in MIGHT consider it.
        But the whole point of that paragraph is that Addie is NOT thinking like a medical person. She’s scared and in shock. She’s certainly not going to list each of the technical things the machines do, because those machines don’t exist in our days.
        BUT even if I take “Hey, you might want to change that line” politely worded, I certainly don’t take a lecture on the techniques of writing from someone who thinks there are two povs …

      2. Lines, Tubes and Channels:
        Okay, this is probably overthinking. No, never mind, this IS way overthinking, but…
        I was thinking of this while having a cup of coffee, and I realized several things about my writing process, and also why I used “tubes” and why I have my character be in the sort of mild shock where she would call them that, no matter what they were called at that time.
        A nurse friend says they’d probably always call them “lines” because there are so many different kinds, not all tubes. I get that. #1 Medstudent son says they’d never call them channels because within a week they’d be “chans” since medical terms are shortened for speaking fast.
        I actually DO KNOW (as all of us do) that medical tubing going in and out of your body is called lines. (I’ve been in the hospital enough.)
        So why did I call them tubes?
        a) this is not a medical story. The main character is a doctor, but this is not about how she used her amazing medical knowledge to save her one true love. IF it were, yeah, I’d use probably Chan (and explain) just to be different and give it that futuristic feel. And I’d describe a couple of the machines to set in your head she knows what they are/do. BUT it’s not a medical story. Her job is to get him out of the medical predicament and free him. There is nothing wrong with him that won’t heal in the real world. She’s saving him from having his father’s brain transplanted into his head.
        b) and this part is fascinating because I don’t do this CONSCIOUSLY. I’ve been a writer for 20 years.
        The terminology MIGHT be “lines” even in the future, but I’ve trained myself to make a picture in your head in the first paragraph. The reason I did that is because I’ve found as a reader, if I can’t “see” what’s happening, I walk away. Or at least it has to be an amazing theme/whatever to keep me there.
        Sure, we all know it’s lines. BUT those of us who don’t work with them every day, if we read the sentence “he had many lines going in and out of his body” will see THREAD. Which will cause whiplash when we realize it’s tubing.

        The purpose of writing is to affect your reader. If you’re using terminology that will give the reader the wrong picture, I don’t care how RIGHT it is, you’re doing it wrong.

        In the end this is rather like the copy-editor who wanted me to write entire sentences in French in the book about the musketeers. “Because they’d speak French.” Well, yes, but the audience doesn’t.

    4. Hey, Mchael W. Perry, it’s awesome that you came to present a lecture on the craft of writing.

      Meanwhile, according to this: https://www.amazon.com/Michael-W.-Perry/e/B001JRYRAM your last book was in 2014, and it looks like the lone fiction piece you’ve produced with a whopping zero reviews.

      When you write something people actually want to read, maybe then someone will take your comments about the craft seriously.

      Until then, and until you can produce work consistently, you should perhaps consider staying in your lane.

      1. it looks like the lone fiction piece

        Which one would that be? I couldn’t see anything that was his (as opposed to “so and so and …” that would qualify. I could have just missed it, I supposed, but with that short a list…

        1. It’s called Lily’s Ride. It’s a “dramatization” of something that supposedly happened.

          Which I’ll classify as fiction.

          Of course, with the blurb that blasted long, it’s not surprising no one bothered to read it.

          1. Hmm. Even my worst selling short has never been that low, let alone my novels. Looks like he maybe sells one every couple of months on average if my own records are any indication.

            1. Sounds about right.

              But it makes such a lasting impact that absolutely no one feels up to reviewing it.

              Clearly, his prose is simply too inspired for mere mortals to comprehend and still remember to write a review.

  39. You know, if you’re that anally retentive about lingo (especially in a completely different time than our own), you shouldn’t read fiction. I’m a nurse. I know what those “sounds” mean and what all those “lines” are for. That doesn’t mean that I would waste time writing about all of that shit because the vast majority of readers don’t give fuck. Add to that the book being set in a different time, and all bets are off. Eat a dick, you pedantic fuck.

  40. Now now, this is a perfect example of how a small mind with a little knowledge is a danger not only to himself, but when he waxes poetic about that limited understanding he inflicts his ignorance upon the rest of us.
    Don’t know the man and by his remarks have no wish to, but I do suspect that he is either a recent graduate of a creative writing course or dare we speculate, the instructor of such a course.

  41. I don’t have an agent. I’m going to delete this in half an hour though, because this page is NOT supposed to have comments 😉
    Thank you. I was just thinking today that I need to link my PJMedia posts here on Saturday or Sunday. I’m new to the gig, so things are still shaking out.

  42. ok, guess that explains why hadn’t heard much about you in a while from hub, he always came to you here from there, not even sure who they considered the editor but glad it seems to have gotten worked out

  43. Dear Sarah, I’ve been reading your posts via Instapundit for a few years now and I finally got around to reading Darkship Thieves. I hate you. I really, really hate you. Now I have to go out and by Renegades and A Few Good Men and all your other works.

    Have you no shame, woman? Couldn’t you have been as bad as Stephanie Meyer so I wouldn’t have to spend my hard, earned money on good literature?

  44. Sarah,
    You mentioned elsewhere (instapundit) your younger son was (or should be) looking for engineering intern jobs. If he wants to try aerospace, please ask him to look at the career section for my company OrbitalATK (www.orbitaltk.com). The intern jobs were just posted and we have locations all over the country.


      1. It sounds like he’s at the right point in his career to get an internship. For engineering students these are paid stints where you usually finish your tour with a job offer pending graduation. For our part, we build spacecraft in Virginia and Arizona. The rockets are built mostly in Arizona. The applications are all on line. If he has any questions please have him email Regan.howard@orbitalatk.com . I’m a systems and avionics engineer working in Virginia and have been with the company 27 years.

        Happy New Yea!

        1. I called him and gave him the website. Oh, did I mention minors in physics and math? But he’s terrified he has “nothing to offer.” Yeah, you know, low confidence runs in this family…

          1. I know the type well. We raised four kids. All are now working and married. Some took some prodding. As long as his degree says engineering he has something to offer.

  45. Sarah
    Loved the essay on revolution. If you have time for a radio interview some evening please email me.

  46. Sarah, I’ve been a longtime follower of your comments on Instapundit. Also, I really liked your PJ Media column this past weekend about the Catholic Church and its growing liberal political activism.

    I’ve finished the manuscript for a non-fiction Cold War history book. Looking for a literary agent who is willing to work with people who, based on their FB postings, are obviously conservative. I’m trying to get the attention of a trade publisher, so I need an agent. I fear that most literary agents are very liberal, and would trash my proposal once they see my FB postings—which are pretty benign, but clearly conservative.

        1. indie — you do it yourself. I mean you might have a “publisher” as a…
          Oh, hell, go poke around Madgeniusclub.com If you still want a publisher, let me look at it, I know a few trustworthy ones.

          1. Sorry, I thought you meant “indie” as in “independent book publisher.” I will check out Madgeniusclub.com.

  47. I’ve checked out Madgeniusclub, and I’d still like to get an established press to publish my book. I really want a good editor to take my work and make it better. Also, because I draw on published sources, I’d like an expert to warn me if I’ve made any fair use violations. If you wouldn’t mind suggesting some good publishers, I would appreciate it.

  48. Just read your PJ Media column on the scarcity of political blogs outside the U.S. I can think of one reason for that—government monitoring and censorship. Our Bill of Rights and its First Amendment are unique in this world. In most countries, the government can punish speech it doesn’t like. So, that may be one reason why people overseas don’t blog on politics.

    1. Yeah, but while there is some censorship at least in the sense you can’t say anything bad about a certain religion,no, there really isn’t censorship in Western Europe. Not the kind you’re thinking of. This is not the old sov-union.

  49. Fair enough, and good to hear. But I’ll bet there’s a lot of self-censorship, because many authorities do aggressively monitor the blogosphere. From what I can tell, government monitoring is more aggressive overseas than it is here.

    1. Um… not in Western Europe. You can get their sjws accusing you, but that’s it.
      Thing to remember: almost every government in the world is more incompetent than ours. And you know what ours is like.
      Honestly, there is a culture more of fitting in and being afraid of sticking out. It’s political, not cultural.

  50. Sarah – I ran into you and Dan at the concierge lounge at the end of the LC and I wanted to chat with your husband some more about business aspects. Could you ping me with his email or remind him he has my card? melisa at badashpublishing dot com
    Thank you so much! And sorry I couldn’t find an email address for you to do it an easier way.

  51. Sarah, I read the first two Darkships and have been meaning to contact you about a Sword of Damocles that from the descriptions of the later books in the series, has not yet fallen. Is this something that would interest you, or is there another medium to go into it more at length?

  52. commenting here, so as likely to be seen… Sarah, I took the liberty of decoding your e-mail from mention above, and sent a letter there… cold introduction that it may be. The topic of that is moving surprisingly fast for me right now, so it is only fair that I tell you that the advice I asked is rapidly becoming a time-sensitive matter. That’s good, btw. Would still greatly appreciate getting in contact with you. All my best, and thank you.

          1. “es” “eh” and no spaces or punctuation. Any chance I ended up in a Junk folder or something? the mail of heat is sometimes prone to that.

          2. Good news, the matter sorted itself on my end. Still somewhat confused as to how that e-mail went into the void rather than reaching you, Sarah… but thanks for at least trying to help. (and yes, that project of mine referenced in all this is publishing today. yay me.)

              1. (( headdesk)) of course you don’t. I’ll just pull out the sent version, annotate it to reflect problem solve, and try a re-send. Just because it might get through this time.

  53. worst case… ldgarrettAThotmailDOTcom and I’ll resend to the return address. and thank you for taking time to follow this up, Sarah. Deeply appreciated.

  54. I have a note on my calendar, gleaned no doubt from the main blog, that today (11/18) is your birthday.
    If I got that right, then Happy Birthday!
    If I got that wrong, then I wish you a very merry un-birthday instead.
    Thanks for your books and your blog.
    They make delightful birthday presents for the rest of us.

  55. Hi Sarah.
    I have one word for you, RESPECT! My wife loves your books AND you defended Milo in a time of extreme intolerance. It’s beautiful to see these pockets of human decency and tolerance still remain. Let me assure you, they’re almost impossible to find today. Like you, I’m not especially fond of Milo, however, the entire mainstream media (which we all know is drowning in “fake news”) has vilified the poor guy and distorted the truth far beyond recognition. Worst of all, it’s been a collective, coordinated effort. One has to ask how deep does such coordination of “fake news” extend?
    To see you speak up (and one of the few voices on the planet) shows me what you’re made of. When the dust settles and this era of extremist lunacy wanes, you can hold your head high knowing you were not intolerant like the overwhelming majority.
    This is the darkest chapter in history that i’ve seen. History will not be kind to most public figures from the last decade (especially the mainstream media). With intolerance at an all-time high for many decades, it makes me wonder what future our children will inherit. We need more Sarahs – people with integrity who believe in basic human decency.

  56. Off Subject.
    I need to cancel my yearly subscription as it is with PayPal, a company I do not like — and the company will not let me cancel my account until I cancel the yearly scheduled subscription payment. I have no idea what my password is so I cannot access the Subscriber’s Space, in order to discuss this, so I’m resorting to a Comment. Weird, I know, but I’m frustrated that there is no ‘Contact Me’ option on this website. I’ll be happy to re-up my subscription, but I have no interest in doing this through PayPal. I have a strong antipathy to PayPal.
    I enjoy your books and your comments on Instapundit.

    1. I’m sorry. I have no idea who else to do it through, because all the other services are worse. If you have suggestions, they’re welcome.
      contact me… it’s something on the program. Just haven’t had time.
      I’m not sure what you want me to do? They only let me return money, not cancel the subscription.

  57. I think that your comments on Instapundit shouldn’t be in ALL CAPS. To me at least it makes them much harder to read (and I do enjoy them)

    Gordon Daugherty
    Austin TX

  58. Hey Sarah,
    Congrats on your MHI book. I’m a long time follower of you nocturnal posts on Instapundit. I was inspired to write a sci fi/fanatasy novel and I finally finished it. I have been looking around for somebody to help me edit it and get it into a kindle format for amazon. It’s about 113k words. Do you have any recommendations for reputable companies or freelancers that you trust that do that sort of thing? Line editing, proofreading and formatting. I submitted it to Baen on a lark but don’t expect I will hear back from them. Any help greatly appreciated.

    1. A) You might wish a different handle here.
      B) Line editing and proofreading are actually the same thing. So, what do you mean by this?
      C) formatting is yet another specialty. Younger kid does it. How much depends on what is needed.
      D) Baen takes forever. And has very specific tastes.
      E) If you’re going to publish yourself, you need a lot more than that, including cover, etc. The blog you want to be reading is not this one but Madgeniusclub.com

  59. Thanks for the response. Yes, I’ve gotten that reaction before but I’ve heard that I sort of grow on people. 🙂 I’ll be here til Thursday. Try the veal.

    Yeah Baen says 6 to 9 months on their FAQ and it has only been 3 and I’m a first time author so I was thinking I would just try to self publish on Amazon. I was looking at a service like EBookLaunch that would edit, proofread, do a cover and format it. Do you have any opinions on that type of approach? Are companies like that worth looking at? This is turning out to be just like my previous career where I really enjoyed creating the product but not the marketing and sales as much.

    Anyway, thanks again for your time and the advice.


    1. It took three years for a submission of mine to Baen to work its way up the chain before finally being rejected by Toni. That’s just one data point, but something to consider.

      1. Thanks. That is a nice data point to plot. So I should probably go ahead and start self publishing. I figured it was a long shot.

    2. 1- No, the initials have history. And some of the people who read this blog to find fault will lose their minds at seeing them. Not that we care but they’ll get more tiresome than usual. So, again, you might want to change, or add a middle initial.
      2- I know some people here and more at MGC have used services, but beware most services that “publicize” you or whatever are actual scams. If you’re paying for cover, proofing, etc. sure. But if you’re paying for publicity and “launch” you’re probably being taken.

      1. Sorry. Didn’t realize that.
        I was thinking of just using a commercial company to edit, proof, and format. I’ve had friends and family do some beta reading and give me feedback.

        Thanks again Sarah. I really appreciate you taking the time.

        Best. V

  60. Sarah – a family member forwarded me the article “The Higher the Fewer” and I enjoyed it so much that I visited this website. One addition; – you correctly document the nauseating kaleidoscope of madness emanating from the vortex black hole of today’s far extremists, but as predicted in your article, the examples are so increasingly plentiful, that some risk being forgotten (or erased).

    You left out “Michael Avenatti for President” week.

    Best Regards,

  61. Add this to your analysis:

    Needs are always generated by wants. Until you want something, you have no needs.

    Right out of the box, people will say they need air, water and food.


    Because they want to live.

    Any “need” can be so analysed.

    Wants, on the other hand, are infinite. Whatever you have, you always want more.

    In a socialist system, the government shuts down any needs above and beyond basic survival. You get equality of poverty, with the people in power getting very rich.

    A socialist arrangement has no path to higher level wants, and very poor satisfaction with the basics.

    The other side of the equation, abilities, require investment, and people invest themselves in proportion to what they will get out of the effort. If everyone is paid the same, there is no reason to improve skills to function at a high level because there is no reward for doing so. People don’t come preassigned with abilities.

    Harrison Bergeron could tell you for sure.

  62. Sarah, I’ve seen lots of your posts on instapundit, and you seem to be in the camp advocating an end to the national shutdown. While I agree, it’s not a cure and it’s worse than the disease, it does have uses.

    We’ve seen draconian orders from mayors, governors, sheriffs and police chiefs, most of which are far beyond the legal powers of the officials issuing them. I believe in the idea that inside every progressive/socialist is a tinpot tyrant trying to get out.

    This shutdown is exposing them, for all the world to see. The L.A. County Sheriff, for one, has been slapped down, but L.A.’s mayor Garcetti has actually threatened to turn off the power and water of those who defy his orders!

    We the people need those like you with a public voice to remind us constantly who these tinpot tyrants are, so we can be rid of them at the earliest opportunity. Please, note their names and actions, and keep reminding us.

    Larry Faria

  63. Sarah, Sarah, Sarah!

    Your SF Darkship Series is so damned addictive! I’ve just “burnt” a weekend on it! It’s good I’m a relatively fast reader, the dialog and action in the stories make it more like a movie (virtus) than a book. I love it when I’m in my own little space (when I was young, my parents and friends called it my “Stevie Space”. Unhearing, intense focus on what i was reading.

    In a past life I marketed supercomputers to H’wood. I even got credited in an Oscar winner for loaning them the h’ware (when you see commercial companies in the credits of a film, it means the products weren’t paid for, rather they were given). The best was having no credits, but having every frame rendered every night for 2 1/2 years by George’s studio (you know the George) on a RenderPlex that they paid for with actual money (>$1.6M).

    That having been said, this series should be a series of films (not however done by H’wood). The concepts are terrific as are the scenes. CGI integration makes this doable. Even a series of games using Unreal Engine would work.

    That’s the problem with being an GOF, you’ve seen a lot of things, know a lot of things are possible, but everyone doing things is sooo much younger…

  64. Hiya Hoyt,
    My Aunt Diane taught me to love words when I was four years old.
    For a while I forgot about words, except such words as BEGIN: END; I bought a Kindle, so now I have literally (literally!) many more words under my fingertips.

    French Polished Murder was tres jolie, I still have a few hundreds of your words in my pocket.

    Best wishes,
    Scot Billman

  65. I just finished PTerry’s “Going Postal”,(in hardback, with the cover) which I found in a metal and glass box outside an old schoolhouse.(repurposed). It was grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrEAT!! Thank you so much for recommending him!

  66. Hi Sarah. Not sure how to contact my Instapundit Mistress of the Dark so I’ll put this here.
    Do you know of any fiction authors who have had recent success without using Amazon and social media?

  67. Sarah:
    Here’s an idea for a non-fiction book, “The Stealing of the Presidency (a la Theodore H. White).” Start with the 2016 election, then the trials and errors to destroy Trump, then the forming of a strategy to steal the next election (the strategy, players, and tactics), then the election itself. For the election, go state by state that was stolen and do the same: the strategy, players, and tactics. Finally the aftermath, and how the game plan was in place to defeat each Trump response (e.g. neutralize the SCOTUS threat by preparing the battlefield with threats to pack the court). Conclude with a strategy to defeat their game plan in future elections. This will require a big, talented team, but you have them (e.g. Glenn Reynolds, Roger Simon, Ed Driscoll, Stephen Green, et al). Announce how to sign up (and pay) for a copy…count me in.
    A fan,
    Willis Cook, CPA

    1. Those guys don’t work for me, and I wouldn’t know how to do it. It’s not my thing. Also I believe the election was stolen in 2008. In 2016 we just surprised them and the made sure it wouldnt’ happen again.

  68. I’ve been working from home since December and now I’m seeing how on line school is really working.

    Teachers hold roll call, talk for a few minutes, and then dismiss the class to work on their own. Every day. Every class.

    One hundred years ago, the dictatorship in Portugal had an active policy to restrict the people from being educated. Their theory was that uneducated people are less likely to revolt. My grandmother’s family escaped from Portugal in 1901. She is gone from the world, but she always resented her lack of education.

    I wonder what she would say about our lack of schooling today.

    1. One hundred years ago the dictatorship in Portugal was actually hard Left Anarchist. The national socialist dictatorship came after those clowns bankrupted the nation.
      Also, this is a good example of “don’t believe everything you read.”
      Portugal’s PUBLIC schooling was introduced by the national socialists. Before them there was a network of parent-paid village schools. My dad in the mid-thirties still went through that, though my mom, from a lower social strata (TRUST me if they were selecting people NOT to teach it would be the place mom came from) was taught in a government school.
      It was VERY GOOD education as far as that went. The mandatory schooling was to 4th grade, which is all mom had, before being apprenticed, but that’s not to say she wasn’t educated. Looking at her books was much like the current American reading 19th century schoolbooks. She left fourth grade with the same or better education than I graduated 9th grade.
      OF COURSE there was a sting in the tail, in that every possible (and some impossible) text lauded great leader. Which, somehow still failed to convince people.
      BUT this is a good example of be wary of what you “Know.” Most of the facts about Portugal known in America, from sh*t like this to the “bloodless revolution” are completely wrong.
      The Marxists view the National Socialists as the enemy, so they tar them with all sorts of ridiculous things. I’m in the pox on both their houses camp, but the truth is the truth.
      Another truth is that the international socialists indoctrinate people just as much but make them UTTERLY pig ignorant. And it is absolutely stratified by region/cost of the houses in the area, etc.
      Because I taught my kids at home after school, they were being courted for college by entities that courted richer areas and schools more up the vine. When we went to meetings, we found we were the poorest in the room.
      EVERYTHING was teaching them “how to think” the school said. In fact it was teaching them WHAT to think. And making sure they viewed wrong thought as a sort of crime.
      Take what they’re doing tot he schools as an opportunity to homeschool your kids. IF it’s legal, go ahead and turn off the D*MN thing altogether. They get funding per student. IF it’s not, let them take roll call, then turn off the d*mn thing and teach your kid. Teach them to recognize propaganda, while you’re at it, too. And teach them that any history written in the last 80 years is tainted by Marxist assumptions and self-insertions.

  69. Hi,
    I just donated a pittance via paypal. I love your short story, Blizzard https://accordingtohoyt.com/2020/12/18/blizzard/. I read it out loud to my husband (after reading the original to him first (as we was raised by wolves, and had no bedtime stories)), and now I want to share this with a friend. Ever since I read Blizzard, it has rattled around in my brain. It has made me much more patient with those who have the shard, all the while plotting how I can help them dislodge it.
    I sent you the paypal donation, as a way of thanking you for this story. Despite it’s small denomination, I hope it will also act as an encouragement to keep on writing these modern fairy tales! I, for one, can hardly wait to buy the bound book!

  70. I am a long-time reader and a buyer of your books. But this isn’t about me.

    This is about my friend James M.

    James is in mid-move from Sheridan, WY to Boise, ID and his movers flaked out on him. He is a creative type, but he’s experiencing this move as sort of a personal crisis and he is at the end of his tether. He has one small apartment, a cat, and no local friends to lean on.

    Sarah, everybody loves you. This entire community you’ve created here is rock solid. Could you find it in your heart to put out the word that there is somebody who just needs help, right away? His lease is up on the 31st.

    People can get in touch with me, please. James is overwhelmed.

    Many many thanks.

  71. I do not know if you still read comments, but wanted to say, will you ever publish – in any form= a collection, NOT fiction, fantasy, sci fi, etc. BUT a collection of the essays and articles that you write? I am sure that thousands of people besides myself, would buy such a thing immediately!

  72. Looking for an old sci fi story about “limited mental flexibility”

    I’m looking for a short story I remember reading 50 years ago in a science fiction anthology. The phrase I remember was “age of limited mental flexibility”, but I’ve googled and googled and can’t find it. I’m hoping someone here may know of it. The story was something like the following.

    A group of humans visit a planet. One of the older aliens takes an interest in them and becomes their unpaid guide. They have a series of adventures but one of them ends badly. When they recover, their guide is no where to be found. A new alien appears to take his place. But they want to find their first guide to thank him for saving them.

    At the end of the story it is revealed that on this planet, every alien must have some sort of purpose or they are terminated. Acting as a guide for foreigners counts. Except that they have to be mentally competent. Their guide had been judged as having reached the “age of limited mental flexibility” for not foreseeing a dangerous situation and had been terminated.

  73. News reports over the last two weeks describe people of many stripes who are being dis-employed for not taking the jab. Firefighters, police, even sanitation workers declining the jab and bailing. Sort of makes me wonder, just who IS John Galt?

  74. Hi, Sarah.
    I really love your Shifter and Dark Ship series. I’d like to read more of our books, but I don’t do Kindel, I want to hold paper. So how about giving a guy a break?

              1. ooohh, I forgot about taxes.
                I’m not as well versed on what is available for sales opportunity on the internet. I tried selling on Ebay for a while and it was not worth the piddly profit I made. of course, i was probly all the used crap I was selling. Well, if there is anything I can help with. I’m a retired Quality Engineer, retired Seabee, active reader, gardener, and on staff for one cat.

  75. What novels in general, including yours, would you recommend for girls ages 10-14 to read about empowered female protagonists who also have kids and families? Asking for my daughters.

  76. Hi Sarah,
    I have read the Shifter series and the Darkship series and thoroughly enjoyed them. However, I just finished re-reading Witchfinder which is better, in my opinion. I am looking forward to the rest of Rogue Magic and The Witch’s Daughter. I think your Magical Empires series could be one of your best! I hope to see more of it soon.

  77. A few months ago, you indicated that you had updated the Kindle edition of Odd Magics. Please ask Amazon to put out notices on your Kindle audience’s personal “Manage Your Content and Devices” book lists that

    this update is available. (A reader can then click on the notice to get the updated version.) This seems to be the only easy way for people with earlier Kindle versions of a book to get the current version.

  78. I was just curious when you were going to start contacting donors about their bennies. I hope the email didn’t go to trash and I missed it.
    I’ve been so looking forward to talking to you and have you bash the first 10 pages of “Walden Shock”.
    I know I’ll learn so much.
    Please tell me I didn’t miss it!

  79. Hi Sarah – longtime fan here.
    I know you post a bit on Ace Of Spades – specifically links to your weekly book promo – but since I can’t find an email address to contact them I thought I’d mention a problem I’ve been having with access them – in the hope you’d either mention it to them or give me a clue how I can contact the website admins.

    I internet using latest OS for the apple iPhone and iPad and several days a week the main page will be loading and partway thru it blanks out and I get a “problem loading page” message. This happens both in safari and chrome. Those days reading more than the first 1 or 2 posts is near impossible. I can of course goto to your according to site to get your promo info but I thought the AoS mods need to know what it’s doing since it’s been doing it for over a year. I suspect it’s some clever coding thing their website is doing thats not so universally supported – since it’s specific to their website.

    Any how, if you can either pass that along to them or tell me how I can I’d appreciate. Keep up the good work and be well.

  80. I just heard about you from a brief mention in a Daily Wire video on YouTube. I have been a big fan of science fiction since the 1960s. I read pretty much any variety of fantasy or SF but I especially like hard SF and grand, epic space adventures. I have been reading a lot of Catherine Asaro and Alastair Reynolds recently. Your Darkship Thieves book looks interesting; I’m thinking of picking it up on Amazon. (Note that the link above is broken, though.) I prefer real books to ebooks, though I’m running out of space to pile them up in. They need no batteries, don’t break if you accidentally drop them, and you can get them autographed at conventions. Ebooks are ok if you want to quickly grep for a passage or a name or something.

    Best wishes.

    — Brian

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