Jean Marie Ward

fiction, nonfiction and all points in between

My Schedule for Balticon 50

Tuesday, May 24th, 2016 | Author: jmward14 | anthology, balticon, broad universe, jean marie ward, rapid fire reading | Comments Off

Taking a moment away from baking double batches of molasses cookies and pecan snowballs to share my tentative schedule for Balticon 50. Why did I tantalize you by mentioning baked goods made with butter and sugar and vanilla and all sorts of wonderful things? Because they and a lot of other homemade goodies will be waiting for you at the E-Spec Books Launch Party on Sunday night. I’m also bringing chocolate to the Broad Universe Rapid Fire Reading Sunday afternoon.
This means you’re coming to Balticon, right? Right?
Can’t wait to see you there!

Saturday 1-1:50 PM, Guilford (Renaissance)
Writing: It’s My Job AND What I Do For Fun—Our panelists discuss how awesome it is having their job be something they love to do: the work itself, the fan, the other authors they meet, the places they get to visit.
Panelists: Carl Cipra (Moderator), Keith DeCandido , Jody Lynn Nye, Jean Marie Ward

Saturday 6-6:50 PM, St. George (Renaissance)
Steampunk and Urban Fantasy Readings with Keith R. A. DeCandido, Christine Norris, Jean Marie Ward, and D. C. Wilson

Sunday 3-4:20 PM, Pride of Baltimore (Renaissance)
Broad Universe Rapid Fire Readings—The woman of Broad Universe are back with flash readings to tweak your appetites!
Panelists: Randee Dawn (Moderator), Roxanne Bland, Carmen Webster Buxton, LJ Cohen, Vonnie Winslow Crist, Kelly A. Harmon, Lisa Hawkridge, Tamara Siler Jones, Paula S. Jordan, Gail Martin, Jody Lynn Nye, Jean Marie Ward

Sunday 7-9 PM, MD Salon B (Renaissance)
E-Spec Books Launch Party—The authors contributing to Gaslight and Grimm, The Weird Wild West, The Side of Good/The Side of Evil and Defending the Future invite you to help them celebrate!
Panelists: Danielle Ackley-McPhail, R. S. Belcher, Danny Birt, Keith DeCandido, John L. French, Eric Hardenbrook, Kelly Harmon, Chris Hiles, Emily Leverett, Diana Bastine, Gail Z. Martin, Mike McPhail, Bernie Mojzes, Christine Norris, Jody Lynn Nye, Ken Schrader, Bud Sparhawk, David Lee Summers, Jean Marie Ward, Robert Waters, Jeff Young

Monday 12-12:50 PM, Parlor 8029 (Renaissance)
What’s Hot Short Fiction?
Panelists: Sarah Pinsker (Moderator), Alex Shvartsman, Michael Underwood, Scott Edelman, Jean Marie Ward

Posted 2 years ago at 11:03 am.

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The Baltimore Book Festival and me

Wednesday, September 16th, 2015 | Author: jmward14 | jean marie ward | Comments Off

For the second year in a row, the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) has invited me to participate in the Baltimore Book Festival, September 24-26. *user rubs hands in anticipation and utters a muted “Mwahahaha!” then looks around guiltily and hopes no one saw*
This year, you can find me in the SFWA tent for two full hours on Friday afternoon (September 24). My schedule is:

4 PM
Find your new favorite author
Four writers, one hour. Prepare to be surprised and intrigued. Readers: Anatoly Belilovsky, Robin Wyatt Dunn, KM Szpara, Jean Marie Ward

5 PM
When sci-fi and fantasy get sexy
It’s not all ray guns and unicorns… join our writers to talk about the hotter side of science fiction and fantasy. Panelists: Kelly Harmon, Carmen Maria Machado, Emmie Mears, KM Szpara, Jean Marie Ward (Moderator)

Not only will these panels give you a chance to sample the wit and works of some great authors, you’ll get to hear me read a bit from “Cooking up a Storm” from Tales from the Vatican Vaults, which is only available in the UK–or in the few places I happen to be speaking. It’s gonna be fun. Looking forward to meeting you there!

Posted 2 years, 9 months ago at 11:36 am.

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My Dragon Con Schedule, 2015 Version

Wednesday, September 2nd, 2015 | Author: jmward14 | Dragon Con, cons, jean marie ward | Comments Off

It’s that time again–Dragon Con time. Starting this afternoon, Greg and Pumba will be on their own for the better part of a week, and I’ll be working panels and catching up with friends at the world’s number one summer camp for wayward adults. If you’re going to be there, too, I hope you’ll join me at one of my panels:

Title: And, That’s the Truth!
Time: Fri 02:30 pm Location: Embassy D-F – Hyatt
Panelists: Mike Bara, Michelle Belanger, Dr. Bob Blackwood, Mike Faber, Jean Marie Ward (Moderator)
Description: How to build a career, or supplement your fiction career, writing non-fiction.

Title: Broad Universe Reading
Time: Fri 07:00 pm Location: Embassy A-B – Hyatt
Panelists: Trisha Wooldridge, Gail Martin, Kathryn Hinds, Jean Marie Ward and more
Description: The ladies of Broad Universe read snippets from their work.

Title: Navigating the Media/Online Frenzy
Time: Sat 11:30 am Location: Embassy D-F – Hyatt
Panelists: Gail Z. Martin, Tom Merritt, Michael Z. Williamson, Mike Faber, Jean Marie Ward (Moderator)
Description: What else is out there besides Facebook? How to generate “buzz” about a book to promote sales.

Title: The Source: Folklore & Mythology in UF
Time: Sun 01:00 pm Location: Chastain ED – Westin
Panelists: Alethea Kontis, Leanna Renee Hieber, Jean Marie Ward, Jonathan Maberry, Valerie Hampton, Samantha Sommersby
Description: Urban fantasy is rooted in age-old myth, legend, and folklore. Authors discuss influences.

Title: Showcase: Todd McCaffrey
Time: Sun 08:30 pm Location: Embassy A-B – Hyatt (Length: 1)
Description: Todd McCaffrey discusses his life and work with Jean Marie Ward (Moderator) and answers questions from the audience.

Title: Win, Lose, or Draw, SF Style
Time: Mon 01:00 pm Location: Embassy A-B – Hyatt (Length: 1)
MC: Jean Marie Ward
Description: The game of drawing & guessing returns to the Lit track. Prizes & glory!

But even though I’ll be away from my keyboard for the next week, you can still participate the great Zombies Need Brains Kickstarter for two (count ‘em) new anthologies, Alien Artifacts and Were- featuring authors like Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Phyllis Ames, Jacey Bedford, Patricia Bray, David B. Coe, David Farland/Dave Wolverton, C.S. Friedman, Walter H. Hunt, Faith Hunter, Katharine Kerr, Gini Koch, Sharon Lee and Steve Miller, Gail and Larry N. Martin, Seanan McGuire, Juliet E. McKenna and me. Click here for the details on two of the best anthologies you’ll read in 2016. The Kickstarter will be ending just about the time I return, so don’t miss out!

Posted 2 years, 9 months ago at 10:14 am.

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My Schedule for Balticon 49

Wednesday, May 20th, 2015 | Author: jmward14 | balticon, cons, conventions, jean marie ward | Comments Off

Balticon has posted its 2015 program—and not a minute too soon. The con starts in three days! I can’t wait. There will be friends to see, toasts to raise, costumes to praise, and panels to enjoy. This year, I have three formal panels, and three readings, at least one of them involving more than my usual offering of chocolate.
Yes, I share chocolate at all my readings—and bring swag to all my panels. I trust that means I’ll see you there. ;-)

Friday

6 PM, Chesapeake
Readings: Keith R.A. DeCandido, Sunny Morraine and Jean Marie Ward

Saturday

8 PM, Salon B
The Scholar as Author: Not every great author is an academic, or vice versa, but it doesn’t hurt. Our panelists discuss what scholarly experience brings to an author’s tool kit, and what writing techniques can’t be picked up in the academic setting and have to be learned the hard way. Karen Burnham (Moderator), Tom Doyle, Ada Palmer, John Skylar, Jean Marie Ward

9 PM, Frankie & Vinnie’s
Broad Universe Fabulous 15 Birthday Party: The Balticon Broads celebrate 15 years of Broad Universe with readings, goodies, giveaways and food! Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Day Al-Mohammed, Sarah Avery, Roxanne Bland, Vonnie Winslow Crist, Kelly A. Harmon, Gail Z. Martin, Roberta Rogow, D.H. Timko, Jean Marie Ward and T.J. Wooldridge

10 PM, Salon B
Diversity in Popular Culture—Fad or the New Normal: Diversity and representation has been a hot topic
in SF/F literature, gaming, and other parts of fandom and popular culture over the past few years. Is this a phase or a watershed moment in the broader pop culture landscape? What role can individual readers, writers, and fans play in this discussion? Jean Marie Ward (Moderator), Day Al‐Mohamed, Stephanie Burke, William Galaini, Sunny Moraine

Sunday

12-2 PM, Concierge Lounge
Broad Universe Rapid Fire Reading: Bite-sized readings from your favorite Broad Universe authors. Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Day Al-Mohammed, Sarah Avery, Roxanne Bland, Vonnie Winslow Crist, Kelly A. Harmon, Gail Z. Martin, Roberta Rogow, D.H. Timko, Jean Marie Ward and T.J. Wooldridge

Monday

11 AM, Salon B
Ancient Greece in SF and Fantasy: Greek history—rewritten or reimagined—is one of the more common sources for stories and novels in fantasy and science fiction. Our panelists discuss why it works so well and what still remains to be imagined. Tom Doyle (Moderator), Jack Campbell/John Hemry, Jo Walton, Jean Marie Ward

Posted 3 years, 1 month ago at 10:00 am.

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My RavenCon Schedule, Version 2015

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2015 | Author: jmward14 | cons, gail z. martin, jean marie ward, ravencon | Comments Off

RavenCon 10th Anniversary

If it’s April, it must be RavenCon, Richmond’s home-grown con. Yours truly will be on the program again this year—as will lots of my favorite people. What you see here is only the smallest part of the whole.

Friday, April 24

5 PM (Panel) Urban Fantasy in the Real World
Room G
Panelists discuss using real-world places and historical figures in your writing. What can you do and what will get you in trouble? How do you keep a place real enough to be recognizable to people who have visited or lived there, but still make it suit your fiction needs?
R.S. Belcher, J. T. Glover, Kurrie Hoyt, Gail Martin, Jean Marie Ward (Moderator)

7 PM Opening Ceremonies
Rooms E & F

11 PM (Event) CJ Henderson Memorial
Bon Air
Friends and fans of CJ Henderson gather together to remember this iconic author and frequent guest of RavenCon.
Danielle Ackley-McPhail (Moderator), Heidi Hooper, Mike McPhail, Michael Ventrella, Jean Marie Ward

Saturday, April 25

4 PM (Presentation/Workshop) Broad Universe Rapid Fire Reading
Chesterfield
Bite-sized readings from seven of your favorite authors.
Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Meriah Crawford, Nicole Givens Kurtz, Gail Martin, KT Pinto, Jennifer Povey, Jean Marie Ward (Moderator)

7 PM (Panel) Weird Westerns
York
What is it about the west that attracts speculative fiction writers? Firefly, The Dark Tower, Cowboy Bebop, Trigun, and The Wild Wild West; film, television, anime, and commercial fiction use the west as a setting and place for magic to happen. Why do we love this sub-genre? Where is it going next?
Danielle Ackley-McPhail, R.S. Belcher, Doc Coleman, Nicole Givens Kurtz (Moderator), Jean Marie Ward

10 PM (Panel) The Villain’s Journey
Anna
We all know about the Hero’s Journey. But is there a corresponding Villain’s Journey? Panelists will discuss the arc villains (or antagonists) can and should take through novels and other media.
Emily Lavin Leverett, Kate Paulk, D. Alexander Ward, Jean Marie Ward (Moderator)

Hope to see you at the con and at the book launch parties being hosted by my good friends Gail Z. Martin (Saturday, 11 PM—I love her so much I may actually crawl out of my coffin before noon to attend) and the folks at Double Dragon Publishing (Friday, 6 PM—by far a saner hour). ‘Til Friday!

Posted 3 years, 1 month ago at 9:58 am.

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My first annual awards suggestion post

Tuesday, February 10th, 2015 | Author: jmward14 | anthology, jean marie ward, short stories, short story | Comments Off

Yeah, I’m late to the awards nomination party. Surprise! But if you’ve still got space on your Hugo or Nebula ballots–or are looking forward to the 2015 World Fantasy Awards–have I got some suggestions for you.

First the writing. This year I had three eligible stories published. How you classify them depends on the award, so I’ll give you all the relevant details. In ascending order of size, they are:

“The Wizard of Woodrow Park” published in The Clockwork Universe: Steampunk vs. Aliens (Zombies Need Brains, LLC)
Hunting for a rogue anthropologist, Aviann Special Agent Hreaak Meekram finds himself confronting a wizard.
(7,000 words)

“The Gap in the Fence” published in Athena’s Daughters (Silence in the Library Publishing)
Ten-year-old Ana will do anything to save her best friend’s dog–even challenge the fairies who live beyond “The Gap in the Fence”.
(9,600 words)

“Glass Transit” in Hellfire Lounge 4: Reflections of Evil (Bold Venture Press)
Bumbling sorcerers Eddie Woodhouse and Ducky “Duke” Orr get more than they bargain for when they leap from a magical bottle into the skies over Lakehurst, New Jersey, on May 6, 1937.
(13,500 words)

And don’t forget all those anthologies are eligible for Best Anthology or Best Related Work, depending on the award. But honestly, one 2014 anthology knocks them and every other potential contender out of the park: Unconventional Fantasy, a celebration of 40 years of World Fantasy Cons published by the Baltimore Washington Area Worldcon Association.

Go ahead, accuse me of favoritism. I’m one of the editors, along with Peggy Rae Sapienza, Sam Lubell and Bill Campbell. But look at the stats.

The six (yep, six!) volumes of Unconventional Fantasy comprise over 250 short stories, essays and poems by best-selling, award-winning authors and amazing new talent. We’re talking writers like Neil Gaiman, Hideyuki Kikuchi, Guy Gavriel Kay, Patricia McKillip and Joyce Carol Oates. Then there’s the art. In addition to the catalogue of the Virgil Finlay exhibit hosted by World Fantasy Con 2014 and the fifty-image gallery of WFC 2014 Artist Guest of Honor Les Edwards, the collection features over two hundred images of artists from around the world–artists like Alicia Austin, Kathleen Jennings, Dr. Moro and Mahendra Singh. To cap it off, there’s a 100-image pictorial gallery of World Fantasy Cons past. Taken together it’s over 3,200 pages of text.

The anthology was formatted in PDF, MOBI and EPUB on a souvenir thumb drive given away (yep, as free!) to all members of WFC2014. As publications go, it was a very limited edition, but thanks to the generosity of our contributors, we just might be able to offer an electronic version to 2015 Worldcon and World Fantasy Con members if the collection makes it to the final awards ballots.

And if that’s not a reason to vote it on every major ballot, I don’t know what is.

Happy voting!

Posted 3 years, 4 months ago at 10:02 am.

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Clockwork Universe: Steampunk vs. Aliens
is officially ticking

Monday, September 15th, 2014 | Author: jmward14 | anthology, gail z. martin, jean marie ward, short stories, short story | Comments Off

Just in time for you to see what all the fuss is about before Zombies Need Brains starts up another Kickstarter, ZNB’s first anthology, Clockwork Universe: Steampunk vs. Aliens has landed at a retailer near you. It’s got Steampunk. It’s got little green men, bug-eyed monsters, secret agent chickens and Chihuahuas. What more do you need to know?

A table of contents? We can do that:

“The Cavorite Job” by Ian Tregillis

“Gracie’s Fire” by Leah Cutter

“Quinta Essentia” by Bradley P. Beaulieu

“When Comrade Ekaterina Died for the Motherland” by J.R. Hargenrader

“A Clockwork Alien” by Gini Koch

“Heart of the Empire” by Jason Palmatier

“The Red Queen and the White” by C.B. Pratt

“The Wizard of Woodrow Park” by Jean Marie Ward (me!)

“Of War and Wings” by Tansy Raynor Roberts

“Airship Down: A Sound and Fury Adventure” by Gail Z. and Larry N. Martin

“Steamsuit” by David J. Fortier

“Fingers of Steam, Veins of Gold” by Brad Hafford

“Heart of Clockwork” by S.C. Butler

“Lady Antheia’s Guide to Horticultural Warfare” by Seanan McGuire

All edited by the irrepressible Joshua Palmatier and Patricia Bray, the same folks who brought you The Modern Fae’s Guide to Surviving Humanity and After Hours: Tales from the Ur-Bar. Wanna taste? I’ve got your excerpt right here. Or you could check out one of the early reviews:

“They take a steampunk nineteenth century…and add aliens. Would Earth even recognize the threat? It’s a nod to industrialism… A high-five to technological advancement… And, above all, kudos to the genius of action-packed prose.”
Word of the Nerd

Not only that, the book comes in all your favorite flavors:

Trade Paperback

Kindle

Kobo

Nook

What are you waiting for? Those Chihuahuas can’t hold out forever, you know. ;-)

Posted 3 years, 9 months ago at 9:57 am.

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Okay, that didn’t work

Tuesday, June 24th, 2014 | Author: jmward14 | Blog, jean marie ward, jeanmarieward.com, web pages | Comments Off

The subscriber button I posted on my website didn’t work with any of my email addies. So it’s off the sidebar, and I’m back to researching widgets. Ah, the glamour of the Intarwebs–not!

Posted 3 years, 12 months ago at 10:00 am.

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Ah, that new paint smell!

Saturday, June 14th, 2014 | Author: jmward14 | jean marie ward, jeanmarieward.com, short stories | Comments Off

Earlier this year, I got disgusted with the duplication of effort involved in maintaining a blog (which, I admit, I use more as a newsletter than a daily/weekly journal) and a “News” page on my website. Techno-dummy that I am, I wasn’t sure I could rectify the problem on my own. The header needed to be changed and that entailed reconstructing the accidental combination of typeface and format I blundered into three versions of image/photo software ago. But I did it–I did it!–without breaking the site.

Tonight’s blog is something of a shakedown cruise for the refreshed site. The basic organization remains the same. The pages don’t look noticeably different. But instead of the redundant “News” in the header, there’s a shiny new “Articles” tab, which links to my web-based nonfiction. At the moment you’ll find about fifty links to interviews on Buzzy Mag, a global link to Crescent Blues, and links to two YouTube features I did for personal research and entertainment.

My ultimate goal is to resurrect the articles I did for SciFi Weekly back in the day, and post them on the site. Whether I can will depend on the copyright status of the articles. Resolving that will involve buttonholing my former editor at a con, because naturally the program where the electronic contracts were stored crashed and wiped all the data. Lesson to remember, folks, paper is still god.

I’m also experimenting with a subscription button to provide email updates when I blog, but the first version I tried doesn’t appear to work. Obviously, this calls for more experimentation. I’ll let you know when it’s operational. Until then, you can try, but don’t expect the email they keep promising you. Mine has yet to arrive.

On a more writerly note, The Mammoth Book of Tales from the Vatican Vaults has accepted my equally mammoth retelling of the 1814 Burning of Washington, “Cooking up a Storm”. When I say “mammoth” I mean effing HUGE. I turned in over seventeen thousand words on a call for six. And, oh yeah, the editor and publisher are British, so of course, I made the Brits my villains. The saga of its acceptance is a textbook example of how not to get published. The only thing missing was the typo in the first paragraph (which I managed to do in another submission earlier this year–oops!) Needless to say there was much mad flailing and ecstatic happy dancing when the contract appeared in my inbox.

I’ll post more on the anthology as details become available. But for now just let me say I’ll be sharing page space with my good friends John Grant and Dave Hutchinson, as well as folks like Mary Gentle and Storm Constantine. Release is set for spring 2015.

As you might have gathered from the sidebar, I’ve got a lot of stories appearing in pixels and print this year. “District Coincidental” made it to the Akashic Books website in February. The link will take you to all 750 words of noir-ish goodness (badness? Who knows with noir?)

Hellfire Lounge 4: Reflections of Evil hit the stands at the end of May. In it you’ll find the latest adventures of Eddie “WOOD LOUSE!” Woodhouse and Ducky “Duc” Orr. The two hapless sorcerers were last seen at the bottom of a jinni’s bottle stinking of absinthe. “Glass Transit”, my story in HF4 tells the tale of how they escape that predicament only to land in a mirror on the Hindenburg on May 6, 1937. Oh the humanity! Oh, the teeny tiny excerpt!

Speaking of Eddie and Ducky, their first adventure (“Burning down the House” from Hellfire Lounge 3: Jinn Rummy) will be reprinted with added monkey and Tuckerization in Dance Like a Monkey, the charity anthology to support the inimitable C.J. Henderson during his cancer treatments. That anthology is scheduled for release in a month or two.

It should appear on the shelves about the same time as The Clockwork Universe: Steampunk vs. Aliens, the first anthology from Zombies Need Brains, Joshua Palmatier’s new publishing venture. Joshua and Patricia Bray were the editors of The Modern Fae’s Guide to Surviving Humanity. They had so much fun with that anthology and After Hours: Tales from the Ur Bar they decided to create their own press to publish more.

My contribution to The Clockwork Universe, “The Wizard of Woodrow Park”, involved stuffing a sentient chicken into the head of a Daniel Craig clone and sending him after an anthropologist missing for seventeen years in a steam-powered world. I also punked out a Chihuahua. Imagine my consternation when I discovered people really are putting titanium crowns on the teeth of dogs attached to Special Forces teams. DUDES! I was trying for ABSURD! Though I suppose the secret agent chicken probably has that covered…

Finally, this entry would not be complete without mentioning Athena’s Daughters, the record-busting Kickstarter literary anthology. The anthology’s tag line is: Stories about strong women by strong women. To which I should add: Introduced and illustrated by strong women, too. Both the print and electronic versions are now available from Silence in the Library Publishing and should be available from online and bricks-and-mortar retailers soon.

Given the company–Mary Robinette Kowal, Sherwood Smith, Gail Z. Martin, Diana Peterfreund, Jean Rabe, Janine Spendlove and so many more–I can’t tell you how honored I was to be included. But it gets better. My story, “A Gap in the Fence”, closes the collection. I still can’t believe it. It’s a gentle story, but one that means a lot to me. I hope readers will feel the same.

That’s it for now. Happy reading!

Posted 4 years ago at 8:05 pm.

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Athena’s Daughters Has Achieved Cover

Thursday, April 17th, 2014 | Author: jmward14 | jean marie ward, short story | Comments Off

Isn’t the print cover just gorgeous? Click the image for a larger view if you don’t believe me. I can’t wait to hold this book in my hands. Even better, from a purely selfish point of view is the illustration for my story, “The Gap in the Fence” (below).

Want to know more? Well, you can read a taste of my story here. Or better yet, pre-order the entire book here. You won’t be disappointed!

Posted 4 years, 2 months ago at 9:30 am.

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