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Aliens In Taos

When astronauts look down on Earth from orbit, they don't see borders, national boundaries, or linguistic groups; they see one world, a gorgeous blue globe spinning in space, streaked with clouds. I don't know if humanity will ever reach the stars (though I hope we will), but if we do, it won't be Americans who get there. It won't be the Chinese or the Russians or the British or the French or the Brazilians or the Kiwis or the South Africans or the Indians or the folk of any other nation state either. It will be humanity; in the language of the SF of my youth, it will be Terrans or Earthlings or Earthmen. The future belongs to all the peoples of the world.

With that in mind, I want to announce that I am sponsoring a new scholarship, to bring an aspiring SF writer from a non-English-speaking country to the Taos Toolbox, the graduate level writing workshop that Walter Jon Williams and Nancy Kress run every summer in the mountains of northern New Mexico. The TERRAN AWARD, as I am calling it, will be given annually, and will cover all tuition and fees to the Toolbox (travel and meals not covered, alas). Applicants will need to speak and write in English, but must be from from a country where English is not the primary language. Walter Jon and Nancy and the Toolbox staff will select the winner. For more information on applying for the workshop, and the scholarship, check out the Toolbox website at http://www.taostoolbox.com. If you have further questions, you can contact WJW at wjw@taostoolbox.com

Oh, and while we're speaking about Walter Jon Williams... he's got a new book out, volume one in a new fantasy series, called QUILLIFER, and he'll be signing copies of it on Sunday at the Jean Cocteau Cinema in Santa Fe.

The event starts at 3:00 pm on Sunday. I'll be there as well, so we'll open with an interview and discussion, then open for some questions from the audience, then put Walter to work signing.

See you at the JCC on Sunday... and in Angel Fire come summer.


Matheus Ervall
Jan. 12th, 2018 11:21 pm (UTC)
Very exciting!
I happen to be an aspiring (part) SF-writer from a non-english speaking country. Is there any deadline to send a story to Mr Jon Williams?

How SF does the story need to be? I am thinking about translating one which is kind of on the boundary of the SF genre, but I have more core SF stories which I could also send in.

In any case, thank you, George, for stretching out a little finger towards the small ones in nowhere-land, all of us who were destined to float around like undetectable asteroids, with heads full of silly little dreams, in the great vacuum between the stars.

I will do my very best to make my small dream look big.
Jan. 13th, 2018 12:34 am (UTC)
Re: Very exciting!
Please send your queries to Walter at the email in the post.
Matheus Ervall
Jan. 13th, 2018 01:17 am (UTC)
Re: Very exciting!
Yes, will do. In any case; thank you, George.
Jan. 12th, 2018 11:50 pm (UTC)
You just made me reread Pale Blue Dot
Man oh man,

what a great post. But it made me go grab my well thumbed copy of Pale Blue Dot by Carl Sagan.

Ahhh... so perfect. Thank you.

Jan. 12th, 2018 11:51 pm (UTC)
Should our species ever escape this rock and start encountering other forms of sentient life, my preferred name is Terran over Earthling or Earthman. Sounds more dignified.
Gregory Hullender
Jan. 13th, 2018 12:42 am (UTC)
I really enjoyed Quillifer, and I recommend it to anyone who like fantasy-adventure stories.
Jan. 13th, 2018 01:28 am (UTC)
"One united humanity"? Not if the MCRN has anything to say about that...
Jiří Kábrt
Jan. 13th, 2018 09:05 am (UTC)
Or OPA for that matter.
Jan. 13th, 2018 08:59 am (UTC)
A Question Regarding People
I’m curious—and I don’t mean this in a snarky or otherwise unpleasant manner: why do you think that humanity striking out into the cosmos will be a good thing? I mean, given our track record as a species, I’d be inclined to think our branching out will be altogether negative.
Jan. 13th, 2018 11:57 pm (UTC)
Re: A Question Regarding People
I like to think that we'll take one of two courses:

A) We'll continue the way we have, in which case we will render ourselves extinct before we're ever any real threat to the cosmos.

B) We will outgrow our current behavior, ala STAR TREK, at which point we will no longer be the horrible threat to everything that isn't us we would be if we went out there now.

I'll admit Option B isn't looking too likely at this point.

Edited at 2018-01-14 12:09 am (UTC)
Laura J Mixon
Jan. 13th, 2018 06:14 pm (UTC)
This is a great idea...
I'm so pleased to see this is happening! Thanks for doing this, George. I'll spread the word as far and wide as I can.
Stephen Richter
Jan. 15th, 2018 12:34 am (UTC)
re: Thank You
Thanks for all you do regarding new and inspiring writers.
Charlie Armstrong
Jan. 17th, 2018 07:12 am (UTC)
Thank you Mr. Martin
With the UFO story in the news I've been checking your blog hoping for your take on it. The more I research ufos the more I see the information in your books, consciousness, remote viewing, genetics, and higher forces steering mankind (love craft). With how well read you are and your syfy background it could all be coincidence but im also curious if you have had time to develop an option on the subject and recent developments.

Anyways, i was hoping this post was about that but I cant complain that your helping young writers so I thank you for that.
Selene Writer
Jan. 18th, 2018 02:10 pm (UTC)
Good idea, but...
These initiatives tend to be very US-centric, so great idea to sponsor international writers. That said, the administrative side doesn't seem thought out. Applicants have to send a _check_ that can be cashed by a _US bank_? Heck, over here in Sweden no one even uses checks anymore (that's why there are credit cards...) so I couldn't even issue one even if I wanted to. That is if my bank can even theoretically issue some kind of international check that the US bank wants.

Incidentally, just sending two physical letters with the requested material (10,000 words in standard MS format) to the US is $19 _each_, so applying is $93 right there, not peanuts for most aspiring writers I know.

If the organizers are serious about wanting to support foreign writers, they need to start accepting digital submissions and PayPal for the application fee.


George R.R. Martin
George R. R. Martin

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April 2018



  • grrm
    5 Mar 2018, 19:17
    Still working on that. When we have a final, I will share it.
  • grrm
    5 Mar 2018, 05:32
    All the Wild Cards books under Tor have had absolutely stellar covers. I'd frame them and hang them on my wall if I could.
  • grrm
    4 Mar 2018, 03:28
    Are all these examples digital artwork? It doesn't look like traditional oil on canvas. I miss the fantasy/sci-fi covers of the '70s and '80s. Even the paperbacks had amazing covers.
  • grrm
    3 Mar 2018, 17:49
    Whatever anyone can get their hands on is, I suspect, the right answer.

    At the last party, it was an open bar with pretty much everything you can imagine on offer. There were some special drinks as…
  • grrm
    3 Mar 2018, 00:07
    Any chance you could tell us who’s doing the cover art for Fire and Blood? And maybe when we can expect a glimpse of it. Thank you!
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