The Real: Laura Anne Gilman

Posted: 24th October 2011 by onyxhawke in Uncategorized
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The Real returns with Laura Anne Gilman, cat slave, food connoisseur, wine snob, author, editor and rumor has it she’s heiress to the font of snark for the greater NYC metro area.


Where do you hide the stories you don’t want others to see?  In my head.  They seethe and simmer and cannibalize each other there, until something better emerges.

Where do you do your best thinking?  In the shower.  Doesn’t everyone?  Hot water applied externally, plus hot water applied internally (coffee/tea) can solve any plot-knot ever tangled.  Combine them (drinking coffee in the shower) and I can give you an entire short story before the hot water heater conks out. 

Who was the first objective person to tell you your writing/art was good?  My teachers.  First, an English professor in, I think, 10th grade, who was taken by my ability as a poet (the bar was, I suspect, set very low.  Very, very low).  And then a writing professor in college, who was also a working novelist, who said he thought I had what it took to make a living in this gig.

Who would you love to get a cover quote from?  Charles Dickens.  Failing that, JK Rowling. I respect the hell out of writers who can get readers to wait on the pier (figuratively and literally) anxious for new installments to arrive….

Of all the historical world leaders who do you wish you could put in charge today?  FDR.  Sometimes you need someone to say “shut up, I’m in charge, let’s get shit done before things get worse.”  

Of all the made up religions you’ve run across which makes the most sense?

Religion by its very nature doesn’t make sense, because it’s a matter of faith and belief.  If it makes sense, then there is no challenge to the believer, and without the challenge the question of faith fails.

However, Pastafarianism works for me. 

What yet to be realized invention do you want the most?

The matter transporter.   Even if it won’t work on people (the complications of transporting living cells is… complicated) the ability to move large items long distances quickly could be the thing to finally end famines.  Also, make moving cross-country much easier. 

Spiderman or Wolverine  Wolverine.

Rudyard Kipling or Stephen King  For reading-as-fiction?  King.  Kipling was quite brilliant but reading him now always feels like a social history lesson rather than an entertainment/adventure. 

Superman or Batman  Neither.  I’ve never been much impressed by superheroes. I’m sure that’s a personal failing in me.


Is your favorite time of year?

Autumn.  Or, any time that’s not-Summer.  So Very Not A Summer Person.

Do you see a movie?

What time of day is your favorite?  I don’t raelly have a particular favorite, but there’s a stillness just before dawn that’s wonderful, when absolutely anything is possible, and you could be awake or asleep or awake-while-asleep…


Goes on your pizza?  Anything except mushrooms.  Or pineapple.  Or ham.  And certainly not all together!  (anchovies, tho, are le yum.)

On your feet on your day off?  Skin.  Sometimes high heels.  Sometimes sneakers.  Sometimes I just stay off my feet all day.

Complete the sentence:

The worst advice I ever got:  “Put up with it.”

The most annoying job I’ve ever had:  retail clerk at an upscale womens’ clothing store.  The clients were mostly wealthy women in their 60’s who thought nothing of letting their small dogs crap in the dressing rooms.  Also, they tried returning clothing they hadn’t bought there.  The job was great for inspiring characters, but oh, I hated it…

For fun:

When I’m done working I unwind by:  sleeping.  Or drinking.  Or hiking/biking.  But never all at the same time!

When I take a break during the workday I:  do a bunch of different things, depending on the break and the day.  Cook.  Play with the cats.  Go for a walk.  Nap.  Go to the gym….  My day is structured into several parts, not just “work” and “home,” because sitting for 10 hours at the computer is really not healthy.  

Your Work:

The one I’d most love to see made into a movie or tv series:  Oh, the Retrievers series, definitely.  It has the most potential for visual adaption – and you could easily weave the PSI series into it, since the characters all inhabit the same universe of the Cosa Nostradamus.  Plus, I know who would play Wren (I have never been able to cast any of my other characters)

The next project to come out is (indulge yourself with this one):  Hrm, that’s a tough question to answer, because this week was the release of THE SHATTERED VINE, book 3 in the (award-nominated!) Vinart War trilogy.  So I’m pretty jazzed about that – having the entire trilogy finally in the hands of readers. 

But mid-November, TRICKS OF THE TRADE comes out – that’s the third PSI novel, featuring the forensic magicians of Paranormal Scene Investigations, and I really gave them a twisty little knot to solve this time…  

Laura Anne Gilman can be found:

Blog:  Http://

Web:  Http://


Twitter: @LAGilman