Author Archives: dan

Charming Lies chapter 1

Here’s the first chapter of Charming Lies, the historical fantasy currently in need of beta-readers! Comment below if you’re interested. ~~~ Chapter 1 The ropes pulled tight. Timurhan bin Metin stiffened his muscles and thanked All-Merciful God the smugglers had … Continue reading

Posted in The Novel | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

7th Mother

Sorry, no April Fool’s joke this year. But remember last week when I talked about making the 7th-son-of-a-7th-son fantasy trope make sense as a system? Well, it turns out I didn’t go nearly far enough. Flesh-Pocket, Melissa Walshe, and Peter Queckenstedt, … Continue reading

Posted in Wonderful, Awful Ideas | Tagged | 6 Comments

Teenager Conlang

I’m so sorry http://danbensen.tumblr.com/post/112692988201/excessunrated-phonetic-description-of-annoying

Posted in Language is Great!, Wonderful, Awful Ideas | Tagged | 3 Comments

X^xth Son

Imagine a world in which being the seventh son of a seventh son (or whatever combination of number and gender) reliably made you magical. The result wouldn’t be as awful as a “magic gene,” a la Star Wars, but it … Continue reading

Posted in Wonderful, Awful Ideas | Tagged | 10 Comments

3 Dimensions of goal-orientation

There are few better feelings than getting an email from Arianne “Tex” Thompson. Zzz! Goes my phone, and to the right of the unopened letter icon, there’s a line of text (in bold!) that says something like Schedulations! or The … Continue reading

Posted in Blog | Tagged | Leave a comment

92 Obsession with Ferrett Steinmetz

This week I’m talking with Ferrett Steinmetz, who’s debut novel, Flex is out now from Angry Robot. Flex has been described as “Breaking Bad meets meets Jim Butcher’s The Dresden Files,” and it has a lot of themes to explore (such as body … Continue reading

Posted in The Kingdoms of Evil Podcast | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Heavy Magic Poisoning

Magic accumulates through the food-chain, from plants  to herbivores to large predators, to humans. Eat enough wolf-liver and you gain the ability to make the world conform to your expectations. You become a baatar. ~~~ Kashin of the house of … Continue reading

Posted in Wonderful, Awful Ideas | Tagged , | Leave a comment

The Era of Kite and Rocket

Remember Abbas ibn Firnas? Here’s what might have happened if his glider had worked. “He flew faster than the phoenix in his flight when he dressed his body in the feathers of a vulture.”—Mu’min ibn Said The earliest known use for … Continue reading

Posted in Wonderful, Awful Ideas | Tagged | 11 Comments

Hang-gliders

       “A thousand years before the Wright brothers, a Muslim poet, astronomer, musician, and engineer named Abbas ibn Firnas made several attempts to construct a flying machine.” What if he had been successful? How might functional gliders in the … Continue reading

Posted in Wonderful, Awful Ideas | Tagged | 3 Comments

91 Book Launching with Carrie Patel

  I’m talking with Carrie Patel, author of the Buried Life, about book launches. I’ve talked with Carrie before about her steampunk-ish, noir-ish, fantasy-ish, dystopian-ish, book-ish underground thing, but that was when we thought it was coming out in summer … Continue reading

Posted in The Kingdoms of Evil Podcast | Tagged , | 2 Comments