Write, have deadlines, meet people! How one gets their book or story published is a common question for writers, and Runtime author S. B. Divya recently jotted down 7 TL;DR steps that were essential to moving her work from the laptop to the printed page. There’s no one trick, but a continuum of activities…
Fiction and Excerpts 
Imagine the United States of America in the near future, a few decades hence. Conservative, anti-immigration sentiment has dominated government and policy. Congress passed the Licensing Act, which denies public services (like education and health care) for children born to immigrants unless their parents obtain a special license. Any state that doesn’t enforce this law is denied certain federal funds.
In November of 2014, I sat down to construct a near-future scenario for a science fiction novella that became Runtime. I wanted my invented world to be plausible and believable, not an unexplained dystopia. This had to feel real. A significant part of world-building is research, which also happens to be one of my favorite pastimes, and so I began with the history of immigration in the United States.
Moena lives in a world of her own making, sealed off from the deadly pathogens of Bangalore in her own personal biome. But when she meets Rahul, a beautiful man working to clean up his city, her need for him draws her into danger. She will risk her health and her work to satisfy her lust for Rahul, and may find love along the way.
In this ongoing series, we ask SF/F authors to describe a specialty in their lives that has nothing (or very little) to do with writing. Join us as we discover what draws authors to their various hobbies, how they fit into their daily lives, and how and they inform the author’s literary identity!
Drowning… broken bones… dehydration… exposure… heatstroke… frostbite… nature has many ways to make you suffer and, possibly, die.
But I can’t keep away from the great outdoors. The sense of being away from all civilization, the isolation of being miles from a road, the lack of ability to communicate with humanity—I thrive on these experiences.
The Minerva Sierra Challenge is a grueling spectacle, the cyborg’s Tour de France. Rich thrill-seekers with corporate sponsorships, extensive support teams, and top-of-the-line exoskeletal and internal augmentations pit themselves against the elements in a day-long race across the Sierra Nevada.
Marmeg Guinto doesn’t have funding, and she doesn’t have support. She cobbled her gear together from parts she found in rich people’s garbage and spent the money her mother wanted her to use for nursing school to enter the race. But the Minerva Challenge is the only chance she has at a better life for herself and her younger brothers, and she’s ready to risk it all.
S.B. Divya’s exciting science fiction debut Runtime is available now from Tor.com Publishing!
This article originally appeared on the Kickstarter page for People of Color Destroy Science Fiction!, a special issue of the Hugo-winning magazine Lightspeed, 100% written—and edited—by POC creators.
I’ve been a fan of science fiction since the age of ten. For years, I was relatively isolated in my passion. Multiple factors played into that: my gender, immigrant culture, and being an only child all contributed. My favorite books and movies were experiences for me alone. I knew that fans must exist. Star Wars, Dune, Lord of the Rings—fame doesn’t exist in a vacuum, but I had no idea how to connect with others who loved these strange and intricate worlds. One benefit of my isolation, however, was that no one said, “Science fiction isn’t for you, for someone who doesn’t look like the light-skinned, male authors of these stories.”
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