Author Interview: Leif Chappelle’s City of Tigers

Author Interview: Leif Chappelle’s City of Tigers

Geeky & Genki recently got a chance to interview author, game designer and composer Leif Chappelle about the upcoming release of his first novel, City of Tigers. G&G: Thanks for chatting with us! So, the list of excellent game and music projects you’ve been involved in is about as long as my arm. Is writing fiction something you’ve also been doing over the years, or is it more recent? LC: To be truthful, City of Tigers may have been one of the first major writing projects I started on. It’s been something I’ve worked on during the course of many transitions over the past five years. I started working on the ideas and characters for the book around 2009. At that time, I was working as a certification tester at a little company called Nintendo. When I had free time, I’d scribble away on sticky notes about what became the basis for projeksjon. I went on to become a game designer at ArenaNet, which develops Guild Wars 2, an online fantasy MMORPG. I became involved in designing for the story side of things, and am still working there as my day job. My college degree is in music composition, and I’ve managed to write some pieces for the game and several indie projects. I’ve also written for dance choreography, chamber ensembles, and now an actual orchestra thanks to my involvement with ArenaNet. G&G: The Guild Wars 2 music you’ve done is fantastic. Okay… Say we’re in an elevator (and the music in here is terrible). I’m someone who likes reading, and I’m looking for a new book. Pitch City...
Frederik Pohl 1916-2013

Frederik Pohl 1916-2013

(cross-posted on my writing blog) Waaaay back in high school I read a story in one of those ‘Best of…” anthologies. It was about a future where the world population had exploded, and the United States had implemented a very unusual method of birth control- although the control was enacted well after the person culled had been born. It was a powerful story, and I remembered it. I couldn’t recall the title or the author, but I remembered every detail of the story. One day I told my husband about it. He pulled up Google- for some reason in all this time I had never thought to consult the Internet- and found the story: “Spending a Day at the Lottery Fair” by one Frederik Pohl. I was thrilled to have the information, and even more thrilled when, a few days later, he brought me a collection of short stories called “Pohlstars”, which included “Lottery Fair”. I re-read the story, and it was everything I remembered (and a little more, to my now-adult brain). And then, because you can’t read just one, I kept reading. I read the heartbreaking “The Sweet Sad Queen of the Grazing Isles”. I moved on to his most famous novel, Gateway. The incomparably weird “Starburst”. The epic “The World at the End of Time”. The sharp, cynical “The Day After the Day the Martians Came”. And the rest of the Heechee Saga, oh yes. When I discovered that Pohl had a blog, I read that too. As a writer and editor who had been working for the better part of the 20th century, he shared...
AnaKhouri Presents Shameless Self-Promotion

AnaKhouri Presents Shameless Self-Promotion

I have a new novella available as of today! “Hour of the Lotus” is up on the Amazon Kindle store, or you can get it directly from Dreamspinner Press’ website for a slight discount. Here’s the hook: General Sho Iwata is devastated when the man he secretly loves, Prince Narita, is struck with a mysterious illness. To make matters worse, the servants assigned to sit up with the prince at night have been falling asleep, leaving him unattended. Iwata’s current lover, Hiroshi, is well aware of the general’s unrequited passion. But that isn’t his biggest problem. His sister is Narita’s favorite consort, but Hiroshi believes she has been replaced by an imposter. When he convinces Iwata to investigate, they discover the true cause of the prince’s illness. Iwata will fight to save the man he loves, and Hiroshi will fight for his sister, but if they want to save the prince and find justice, they first have to battle an ancient spirit and survive.   If you do purchase a copy, please please please leave a review on either Amazon or the publisher’s site. And make it HONEST; I don’t need anyone to pat my head and tell me it was good. That’s what my mom is for.    ...
A Little Christmas Reading

A Little Christmas Reading

[wdgkt_cap_img source=”http://geekyandgenki.imaginaryexercise.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/3/2012/12/Pappy.jpg” thumb=”http://geekyandgenki.imaginaryexercise.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/3/2012/12/Pappy-210×300.jpg” align=”right” caption=”"The flames made him huge and painted him with fire, like a sorcerer, and he filled that whole end of the room with the blaze of his torch and his flickering figure and the shadow of his tremendous size."” width=”210″ height=”300″ alttext=”Pappy”] [/wdgkt_cap_img]Hey All, On my sixth Christmas, in 1979, one of the gifts waiting under the tree for me was a book by Paul Theroux, titled A Christmas Card. It’s not a very long book – only 84 pages. I read it for the first time that afternoon; the second time on boxing day. I read it at least a dozen times that first year, and countless times since. Much of my sense of what home and family are were shaped by these 84 pages. So too, were my sense of magic and wonder fed by its magic and mysteries. No one else ever seems to know this book, so for the last fifteen years, I have made it a tradition to read A Christmas Card to a new set of friends each Christmas. This year, I thought I’d share it with friends on the internet. Merry Christmas everyone, and thank you Dad, for this gift of magic you granted me all those years ago. I miss you. Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 59:26 — 54.4MB) edmcw on...
50 SHades of Grey Isn’t Sexy Even If George Takei Reads It

50 SHades of Grey Isn’t Sexy Even If George Takei Reads It

Here’s an early Christmas present. Actually, if the world ends tomorrow then this might be the last thing you ever read. Or have read to you. Look that up in your Funk & Wagnalls. Apparently in this book, the clueless idiot heroine says ‘Oh my’ every time her S&M-lite dom boyfriend/boss does anything remotely sexual. So I guess this was a no-brainer. Here’s everyone’s favorite Japanese-American geek icon reading from the one of the worst published novels ever written. (and yes, I know it’s one of the worst- I read part of it! At least it’s good for amusing bookstore cashiers during slow periods.)...
Boris Strugatsky Dead at 79

Boris Strugatsky Dead at 79

(Full disclosure: this is cross-posted over on my writing blog) Boris Strugatsky, one (and the surviving) half of the legendary writing team the Strugatsky Brothers, passed away yesterday at the age of 79 (his brother Arkady died in 1991). They were barely known in the US, but these Russian authors were, in my opinion, among the finest SF writers of the 20th century, writing thoughtful, original, compelling stories. If you’re interested in checking them out, I highly recommend their most famous work, the novel Roadside Picnic (which was made into a Tarkovsky film called Stalker). The latest US edition is a trade paperback that includes a fascinating afterword by Boris, describing the novel’s torturous route to publication in the former USSR. The book tells of a slightly-future world, in which aliens have abruptly descended and just as suddenly left, with no explanation of their brief presence. In their wake are large areas in several parts of the world filled with their leavings; strange alien technology. Only scientists are legally allowed into the zones to retrieve items for study, but most of the scientists (and some private collectors) are happy to hire stalkers, men who are reckless or desperate enough to enter and face things that make no sense in a human world and have no application they can figure out. Many of them end up dead, zapped by objects they can’t understand. The novel follows one particular stalker, and through him shows us the most poignant part of the story: that even the surviving stalkers don’t escape unscathed; in fact, their children pay the price for their parent’s exposure...