content by

Kameron Hurley

Fiction and Excerpts [5]

Fiction and Excerpts [5]

Our Faces, Radiant Sisters, Our Faces Full of Light!

On International Women’s Day, several of the best writers in SF/F today reveal new stories inspired by the phrase “Nevertheless, she persisted”, raising their voice in response to a phrase originally meant to silence.

The stories publish on all throughout the day of March 8th. They are collected here.

[Read “Our Faces, Radiant Sisters, Our Faces Full of Light!” by Kameron Hurley]

Series: Nevertheless She Persisted

Who Owns the Stars? Creating a Space Opera Universe

Authors make stuff up. Let’s not pretend it’s any more magical than that. It’s when we’re called out for populating those made-up worlds in ways that reveal our assumptions about that future that we get uncomfortable admitting that on the page, we rule absolute. So we hand-wave and sputter about how the characters led the way, about how we were being “realistic,” about common tropes and what came before…

But when we choose who goes into to space, who populates the future, we are doing just that: exercising a choice. And I wanted to see a choice I hadn’t seen before.

So I wrote it.

[Read more]

The Geek Feminist Revolution: Where Have All the Women Gone?

The Geek Feminist Revolution is a collection of essays by double Hugo Award-winning essayist and fantasy novelist Kameron Hurley—available May 31st from Tor Books!

Unapologetically outspoken, Hurley has contributed essays to The Atlantic, Locus,, and others on the rise of women in genre, her passion for SF/F, and the diversification of publishing. The book collects dozens of Hurley’s essays on feminism, geek culture, and her experiences and insights as a genre writer, including “We Have Always Fought,” which won the 2013 Hugo for Best Related Work. The Geek Feminist Revolution will also feature several entirely new essays written specifically for this volume—including “Where Have All the Women Gone?” presented below.

[Read more]

Empire Ascendant

Every two thousand years, the dark star Oma appears in the sky, bringing with it a tide of death and destruction. And those who survive must contend with friends and enemies newly imbued with violent powers. The kingdom of Saiduan already lies in ruin, decimated by invaders from another world who share the faces of those they seek to destroy.

Now the nation of Dhai is under siege by the same force. Their only hope for survival lies in the hands of an illegitimate ruler and a scullery maid with a powerful – but unpredictable –magic. As the foreign Empire spreads across the world like a disease, one of their former allies takes up her Empress’s sword again to unseat them, and two enslaved scholars begin a treacherous journey home with a long-lost secret that they hope is the key to the Empire’s undoing.

But when the enemy shares your own face, who can be trusted?

In this devastating sequel to The Mirror Empire, Kameron Hurley transports us back to a land of blood mages and sentient plants, dark magic, and warfare on a scale that spans worlds. Read an excerpt from Empire Ascendant—available October 6th from Angry Robot.

[Read an excerpt]

I Love Writing Books, So I Need to Get Better at Writing Them

I read a really spectacular Advance Reader Copy yesterday of a book called The Traitor Baru Cormorant (out Sept 2015. I’ll talk more about it then). I was hooked from the first page and cried through the first 40 pages. It’s a tragedy in the traditional sense, like Madame Bovary or Macbeth (or Mass Effect 3!). You know everyone is fucking doomed. You know it from the first forty pages, and the inevitability of that, of knowing that to “win” in this book, for the protagonist, means the endurance of staggering, brutal losses, was actually terribly comforting for me.

I dreamed about it when I went to sleep—about being stuck in these horrible political nightmares, of trying to untangle plots through bank notes and accounting, and desiring the wrong people, for all the right reasons, in a society that kept close watch on me, like a secondary world fantasy Big Brother, marching me inevitably toward my doom. I dreamed of trying to fight a system within a system that was horribly corrupt, and trying to retain my own sanity, my own decency, my own sense of self, while knowing the only way to win was to give all that up.

Horrible choices. A terrible bind.

And I admit that sometimes this is what is feels like to be a career novelist.

[Read More]

Cultivating Wonder: Robert J. Bennett’s City of Stairs

I’ve been trying to read Robert Jackson Bennett’s books for some time. He’s got one of the most entertaining Twitter feeds around—a blend of absurdist, weird, nonsensical , and occasionally on the edge of off-color humor (I’ll sometimes find myself laughing at a tweet while thinking, “I don’t dare retweet this”). But there are all sorts of writers I like in other venues whose fiction just doesn’t do it for me.

Bennett writes a variety of books in a variety of genres, and is a two-time Shirley Jackson Award winner and winner of the Sydney J. Bounds Awards for Best Newcomer. Yet I’mGideon Smith amazon buy link not much of a horror or gothic fan outside a few classics, and thus his previous work was not quite up my alley. I’m terribly particular about what I read: lush writing, secondary world or seriously far-out science fiction, strong worldbuilding, dynamic characters. I need to have it all for it to work for me.

So when I heard Bennett was writing a secondary world fantasy—City of Stairs—I was intrigued. When early reviewers compared its themes to those in my own new epic fantasy, The Mirror Empire, I was doubly intrigued.

[Read More]

Series: That Was Awesome! Writers on Writing

The Mirror Empire (Excerpt)

Check out The Mirror Empire, the first installment in a new series from Kameron Hurley, available worldwide this September from Angry Robot!

On the eve of a recurring catastrophic event known to extinguish nations and reshape continents, a troubled orphan evades death and slavery to uncover her own bloody past… while a world goes to war with itself.

In the frozen kingdom of Saiduan, invaders from another realm are decimating whole cities, leaving behind nothing but ash and ruin. As the dark star of the cataclysm rises, an illegitimate ruler is tasked with holding together a country fractured by civil war, a precocious young fighter is asked to betray his family and a half-Dhai general must choose between the eradication of her father’s people or loyalty to her alien Empress.

[Read an Excerpt]