Snapshots: Kristine Kathryn Rusch interviewed

What are you working on now?
I’m finishing my next Retrieval Artist novel, as yet unnamed. I just finished a story for a new gaming company, and I really need to write some mystery fiction Real Soon Now.

What have you recently finished?
Ooops, answered that above. I wrote a novella for Asimov’s called “Uncertainty,” which is an alternate history. I finished “Charming Blue,” last fall which is a humorous fantasy/romance under my Kristine Grayson pen name. I slowed down tremendously this past year because Dean and I inherited an estate from a friend who was a hoarder and a book collector. We’ve been wrangling that thing down to size and finally have it so that we can at least see all the items we now own. (It’s astonishing what he collected over 30 years.) I count that as writing, since it took the place of much writing.

What’s out recently or soon out?
Out now, Anniversary Day, which is the most recent Retrieval Artist novel. Also, Boneyards, the latest Diving Universe novel. (Both of these are sf.) A pen name space opera romance, Assassins in Love, written under the name Kris DeLake. And lots of short stories.

What’s your typical writing day?
I get up, answer e-mails/check blogs/read the news (I can’t say newspapers any more), then write at least 1,000 words, exercise, write another 1,000 words, have lunch, write another 1,000 words, cook dinner, write some more, and then read. I watch about an hour of TV, and I do answer e-mails along the way. But my e-mail accounts are only on one computer two floors away from my writing computer, so I can’t waste time answering e-mail instead of writing. It keeps me productive. That’s a typical day.

What would you draw attention to from your back-list?
WMG Publishing has released all of my Retrieval Artist books, which is the first time they’ve all been in print at the same time. I’m thrilled by that. There are also some novellas in the series that only appeared in Analog, and they’re available as e-books. Eventually, all of the RA novels and novellas will be available in print as well, probably later this year. Also, my Fey novels are all in print again–including 4 that never got released in the UK. So I’m pleased about that as well.

Which other authors or books do you think deserve a plug?
Oh, there are so many! I think every sf fan should read Allen Steele and Jack McDevitt, as well as Stephen Baxter. Lightspeed and Asimov’s are both doing great things in the short fiction field at the moment. Elizabeth Hand has a new mystery novel out worth reading, and the new Stephen King is spectacular. Lots of great writers bypassing traditional publishers and going direct to e-books. Rather than go through a huge list here, folks should check out my website:, and hit the Recommended Reading button. I post a new list every month, and often point out good short fiction (published indie or traditional) as I find it.

So… the easy one: what’s the future of publishing? How will writers be making a living and publishing in five or ten years? What will readers be reading?
I blog specifically about the future of publishing every Thursday and have done so for years now. That’s on my blog as well. The short answer is this: The future of publishing is in flux. The future is bright for writers smart enough to publish indie. Less bright for writers who remain in traditional publishing. Traditional publishing is running scared right now (and it should–it has a lot of bad business practices) and will hurt writers with bad contracts and bad reporting until things settle down, four or five years from now.

The future of reading is the brightest of all. Not only are more people reading, but thanks to e-readers, more people have access to books. (You don’t need to live near a bookstore to get the book you want.) Plus writers can put their backlists into print now without the help of traditional publishing, so there’s more to read than ever before. It’s wonderful and a bit overwhelming.


Kristine Kathryn Rusch is an internationally bestselling author. She writes under a variety of names, including Kris Nelscott for mystery, Kris DeLake, Kristine Grayson and Kristine Dexter for romance, and of course, Kristine Kathryn Rusch for sf/f. She’s won awards in all her genres, and her books–diverse as they are–all have hit bestseller lists. She’s also known as a short fiction writer. Her short work has appeared in more than twenty best of the year collections, and won more awards than she’s willing to count.

Kris wrote the chapter ‘Alternate History: Worlds Of What If‘ in Strange Divisions and Alien Territories: the sub-genres of science fiction (edited by Keith Brooke, published by Palgrave Macmillan, February 2012).

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About Keith Brooke and infinity plus

Keith Brooke is a writer of crime fiction, science fiction, fantasy and other strange stuff, and editor and reviewer of same. He is also the publisher at infinity plus, an independent imprint publishing books by leading genre fiction authors. View all posts by Keith Brooke and infinity plus

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