Interview Questions for Lois McMaster Bujold

Carolyn Hill

Brown Rat, wandering & wondering
Apr 8, 2006
Teresa has arranged for Chronicles to interview Lois McMaster Bujold, author of acclaimed science fiction and fantasy novels such as the Miles Vorkosigan series and the Chalion series. (Hooray, Teresa!)

Bujold seems to be less well-known on Chronicles than she is in the states, so here's your chance to get to know her--or, if you are already a fan of her marvelous writing, here's your chance to ask her those questions you've always wanted to ask.

Please post your questions here, and they'll be included in the interview.
Many congratulations to Teresa and anyone else involved in organising this -- it's quite a coup.

I would love to ask the following:

I know the author has been concentrating on fantasy in recent years, with her award-winning Curse of Chalion series and now her The Sharing Knife series, but is she planning on returning to the Vorkosigan universe at some point in the future?

We've had a brief taste of Miles in married life -- enough to show that it's not going to be as simple as he might have expected, even though he's been forced out of his double life as Admiral of a mercenary fleet and trouble-shooting agent fro Imperial Security, but you just sense there's so much more yet to come, if the author ever finds the time to tell us...

Okay, I guess Lois probably gets fed up with SF fans asking her questions like this, but there are many of us out here who still await Miles' return with great anticipation. :rolleyes:

PS and I'm English, by the way... Some of us over here are fully aware of LMB and her writing... honest! :)
IW said:
is she planning on returning to the Vorkosigan universe at some point in the future?

I'll second that: and third it if necessary!
(Well done, Teresa! Thankyou lots!)
I'm lousy at preparing questions: I'd probably ask if she'd finally got her bathroom finished, so she could get on with serious things (like writing books for me to read, obviously)

However, without wanting to be as persistant as a martian lizard (she'll know what I mean) any information about future plans, SF or fantasy, would be much appreciated.
I would like ask about the relationship with Jim Baen and his influence on her writing.

How does her writing evolve? Does she start with an idea about a character, or setting, or overall story?

I know in general what authors she likes to read but which authors would she say were her influences and in what way?

Which current authors that she has encountered would she recommend for us to read?(Always looking for recommendations:))

What influence, if any, the advent of fandom via the internet has impacted science fiction in general and herself in particular?

What is her take on the future of Science Fiction/Fantasy in general. Does she see it expanding and vibrant, or derivative and stale?

Please let her know that I have encountered her GOH speech When World-Views Collide referenced in college courses on writing. She's making it into academia! link here-

Also let her know that in the 12 years I was in the book business I was able to introduce more than 400 people to her writing. And it was a great, great pleasure to do so.
I'm pretty simple, I guess.

I'd like to know who her inspiration for Miles actually is. Is it a real person. I almost think it would have to be. If so, she must have some literally side splitting stories to tell...
Since personal obligations are now making it impossible for Brown Rat to organize the questions and conduct the interview, I'm taking over that job.

I'll be collecting questions through Tuesday. After that ... well, you can ask them, but they probably won't get into the interview (unless I fall behind my schedule for sending the questions to the author).
Thanks, Teresa, for picking up the ball for me.

I wanted to ask her about two recurring themes in her work: (1) people of different cultures or backgrounds coming together to find a new or blended way, and (2) characters with physical and/or psychological disabilities they overcome or find strength in--often after feeling outcast or disenfranchised because of those disabilities. Both themes appear in many of the Miles books and in the Sharing Knife books, and both themes resonate strongly for me. And both seem to revolve around issues of individual values versus cultural values. I was hoping she might share with us why those themes are important to her.

Another question I wanted to ask was about the romances between characters in her books. I enjoy romance mixed into science fiction and fantasy and would be interested in her thoughts about the process of combining SFF and romance, the market for works that combine SFF and romance elements, and her fans' reaction to the various romances in her works.
I've just received Ms. Bujold's answers this morning. She's been very busy and apologized for the "truncated" interview, so perhaps some of the questions went unanswered (I really did ask everything that everyone suggested here), but the answers she does give are so full and generous, I don't think that anyone will be disappointed. Far from it.

Right now, I have to finish formatting the interview for HTML, and write a brief intro. Then I will post it.

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