Both Tortall and the Circle Universe made The Mary Sue’s list of 8 Fantasy Series We Could Adapt Besides More Lord of the Rings! Check out the full list for more great fantasy series.
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io9: Let’s start with the new book, Tortall: A Spy’s Guide. Why do this kind of in-world expansion/set of information?
Tamora Pierce: People are always asking me—and if not me, friends of mine who know the universe well—details that don’t normally get included in the books, or details of story that haven’t come out yet. I was talking with my editor at Random House about just a basic dictionary or travel guide, or something of the sort that would have just bits and pieces that people would like that was pretty much insider information. I’d seen that there were several books of that kind that had come out at that point and I thought, “Yeah, we can do this.” That was my first mistake.
(There’s even a little tidbit about the upcoming Numair Chronicles in there…)
Earlier in October, Tammy spoke with Unbound Worlds at NYCC 2017. In addition to talking about the writing process, she speaks frankly about the feminist themes in her books:
I write female heroes, by and large, and I write female characters taking action when action is needed. I write female characters undertaking tasks that are often described as tasks women can’t do. I write realistically as I can how they would go about undertaking those tasks in a way that people in our world would understand without ringing any false notes. I was raised a feminist. My mother was a feminist.
Check out the full interview here: Tamora Pierce: ‘No is Not a Word You Should Tell Me’
Last week, bestselling author Leigh Bardugo interviewed Tammy for Parnassus Books’s AuthorsIRL blog. The two go into the world of Tortall, the writing process, and the future of Tammy’s books– and the YA genre as a whole:
As times have changed, I’ve tried to bring more variety in my characters to my books. It’s important that readers feel part of my universes—there’s too much exclusion and battering in this one.
Read the whole interview here: Leigh Bardugo Interviews YA Legend Tamora Pierce
(And, if you’re in the Nashville, TN, area, be sure to stop by Parnassus Books this evening to meet Tammy and her Spy’s Guide co-author, Julie Holderman!)
In a recent interview with Re:Fiction, Tammy discusses her experiences as an author, from the beginnings of her career to the writing process itself. For writers everywhere, Tammy’s advice is to:
Keep writing. If one idea gives out on you, go to work on another. The more you do, the longer your work will get, and the better it will get, until you’re finishing projects. Write what entertains you. That will keep you working on a project.
Check out this recent SYFY WIRE article by Tricia Ennis: Tamora Pierce’s Tortall Books Deserve to Be an Awesome TV Series! Alas, there aren’t any Tortall TV shows in the works right now, but maybe there’s a network out there listening to all of Tricia’s great points.
After all, there are a lot of good things happening with fantasy in TV these days. Isn’t it about time for a prestige series for girls?
Earlier this month, Tammy joined authors Lisa Maxwell, Katherine Arden, K. Arsenault Rivera, S.A. Chakraborty, and V. E. Schwab at New York Comic Con, to speak on the Extraordinary Enchantments panel:
“Fantasy is the realm of idealism,” Pierce said. “Science fiction is the realm of the future. We can game out how the future is going to grow from the seeds we have now. But fantasy is about idealism, is about justice, is about the effects of the rule of law, is about the effects of tyranny, is about the effects of poverty; and we put these things in fantasy so that readers don’t feel preached at.”
Read more about the ensuing discussion here: “Fantasy is the Realm of Idealism”: Tamora Pierce in Conversation with the Female Fantasy Authors She Inspired
Congrats to Julie Holderman, Tammy’s longtime assistant and co-author of Tortall: A Spy’s Guide, for her win in the 2017 Industry Insider Screenwriting Contest! In her recent interview with Script Magazine, Julie discusses the writing process, her winning screenplay, and her beginnings as a student (and, later, a teacher) at the Alpha Workshop. About her script:
It follows two young female science students in 1890s Chicago, after the murder of their teacher. In trying to find out who killed her, they discover her shady dealings with one of Chicago’s foremost businessmen. They have to choose whether or not to bring him to justice for her murder, exposing their teacher and ruining their own future careers, or staying silent. He’s very invested in making sure they can’t say a word.
Click here to read the interview in full: Meet Julie Holderman, Winner of Industry Insider Screenwriting Contest
In “How ‘Harry Potter’ Saved Young Adult Fiction,” Tammy and other authors, publishers, and sellers of children’s books reflect on the Harry Potter series, from its rapid rise in popularity to its lasting impact twenty years later. Happy 20th Birthday to the Boy Who Lived!
(Also featured in the article is Peter Glassman, founder of Tammy’s favorite bookstore, Books of Wonder!)
Daja gets some recognition from Guardian readers as she makes the list of Ten Empowering Female Characters in Children’s Books! Regarding her impact, Hannah Catteral says:
She has a strong sense of justice and hard work, and is always a champion for her friends. She apprentices to an older blacksmith, Frostpine, who teaches her skilled and magical metalwork, and eventually becomes a master of her craft.
In later books, as she grows older, she also falls in love with a woman, and this is treated as perfectly normal. Having grown up with Daja, her friends and their adventures, this was absolutely wonderful and unprecedented for childrens’ series at the time.