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Hey now, who let the boys in? Today we’re welcoming our first male author to the #WomenofSciFi series. We’ve been running these interviews for about 6 months and it seemed time to let in a little diversity, hear from the other side of the gender divide and remember that as with all things feminist, men are not the enemy, they are our allys and sometimes the solution. So, I wanted to invite some amazing Indie Sci-Fi Talent to the blog. So who did I start off with? Why Logan Snyder! And you’ll see why!
P.K. Tyler – The bio on your website talks about your life as an author, but not necessarily of your own. Can you tell us a bit more about your day to day life? What authors inspire you, where do you find it easiest to write & what’s your favorite food, car & color?
Logan Snyder – My day to day life is fairly quiet, and that’s the way I prefer it. I’m an author who works from home. Usually I spend a few hours each day drafting copy for advertisers and marketers, then I switch over to the fiction side of things. I’d love to be able to focus entirely on writing fiction, but the books aren’t paying the bills yet. I still feel pretty lucky, though, because even when I’m working I get to play with new ways of putting words together while getting paid for it. Not a lot of indie authors get to say that about their day jobs.
Authors who inspire me… well, my fellow indies, definitely. Anyone brave enough to go it on their own and press the PUBLISH button is inspiring to me. As far as traditionally published authors, I’m a big fan of Iain M. Banks, Justin Cronin, William Gibson, Lev Grossman, Erin Morgenstern, and E.J. Swift. There are loads of others, of course, but that’s a fairly solid sampling off the top of my head.
As for where I find it easiest to write, I do my drafting on a desktop, so there’s not a lot of freedom there. But I always edit from a hard copy, and usually I’ll take that out to the kitchen or the porch and pick it apart. Sometimes I’ll red-line and rewrite pages and pages in long form if they don’t work. That happens more often than I’d care to admit.
Favorite food: Good, authentic Greek food. There are a couple places in my area that do it right and the experience is next to sublime.
Favorite car: I’ve had my current car, a Toyota Corolla, for ten years or so and it still drives like a dream, so I’d have to say the one that I have.
Favorite color: I should probably say violet because reasons, but twenty years in South Florida has conditioned me to appreciate and even enjoy pastels. Make of that what you will.
PKT – You’ve written novels, short fiction and short stories in collected anthologies. Which of these is the hardest to write, and which is the most fun and why?
LS – Novels, at least for me, if only because of the commitment involved. I used to write nonfiction before transitioning to fiction, so I’ve been comfortable writing in the short form, either article or essay length, for a long time. When I decided I wanted to try writing fiction, though, I jumped into the deep end and wound up abandoning my first two attempts at novels. That’s when I decided to scale it back and try my hand at a novella. The result was This Mortal Coil. After that I wrote my first full-length novel, The Lazarus Particle, and have written a few others since then, but every time I start a new novel project I take a few minutes to acknowledge the two that never were. I may not have finished them, but they were both extremely important to my development as an author.
As for which is most fun, I’d have to say all of them. They all present different challenges, and that’s always fun. Plus I’m still at a stage where I’m amazed people want to read the stories rattling around my head, so any opportunity to put another one out into the world is exciting.
PKT – What science fiction devices are common in your writing?
LS – Interesting question. The Lazarus Particle and VIOLET both revolve around world-changing scientific breakthroughs and the potential for their abuse. They also share elements of artificial intelligence, though obviously VIOLET leans much harder in that direction. (For now…) The Lazarus Particle has a number of elements common to military sci-fi, including space travel, interstellar conflict, etc., and that will likely continue as I expand and add to the Particleverse.
Also, grisly deaths seem to be pretty common, although I’m not sure that’s strictly a sci-fi device. Either way, good luck if you’re one of my characters.
PKT – Are your stories based in the future, past, or both?
LS – Most of my stories are set either far in the future (like The Lazarus Particle) or a vague, indiscernible near-future (This Mortal Coil, VIOLET). I’ve written some stories that take place in the past, and I’d like to do more historical fiction, but the audience is limited and despite the fact that I was a History major, my heart keeps taking me back to sci-fi. Both of the next two novels I have planned out are sci-fi in scope, one being a sequel to The Lazarus Particle and another which is still way too early to talk about.
PKT – There’s a lot of buzz in the science fiction world about female vs. male authors in what used to be a very male dominated genre. What are your thoughts on this?
LS – I hate it, and I’m glad you used a word like ‘buzz’ to describe it. I’ve seen people try to couch it as a discussion and I reject that, because the side that’s for male authors is unequivocal in that they don’t want female authors in the genre anywhere, period, at all, which is just patently ridiculous. I can’t even tell you how excited and humbled I was when Patrice asked me to join the lineup for Beyond the Stars, and not just because Dark Beyond the Stars was my favorite anthology of 2015. I’ve grown up around strong women my entire life, and I think the thing I’m proudest of when it comes to The Lazarus Particle is that it has so many badass female characters whose actions drive the story. A huntrex, an advocate, a commandant, an ace pilot, a savvy starship mechanic… the list goes on. So it was very cool to revisit that universe and contribute a story about one of my most favorite characters ever, Xenecia of Shih’ra, the Huntrex. And to be part of such a fantastic lineup just made it that much more special.
As for the people pushing for female voices to get out of science fiction, the only thing I have to say is that no one is taking your stories away from you. If you love the version of Star Wars that only featured one main female character and was happy to put her in chains as a trophy slave for a sentient gangster slug, good news! That movie still exists, and no one is coming to take it. In fact, you don’t have to consume any media written, directed, produced by, or starring women, sci-fi or otherwise. You’re more than welcome to hunker down with your classics and pretend the rest of us aren’t here. But we are here, authors and allies, and I for one couldn’t be happier by the influx of female and LGBT voices in science fiction. The genre needs it, and fans should welcome it.
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About Logan Snyder
Logan Thomas Snyder is a lifelong reader, dreamer, and avid science fiction fan. His stories run the gamut from historical fiction to speculative and science fiction, with the occasional pit stop in between. You can connect with him online at www.LoganThomasSnyder.com for info on his upcoming projects and more.
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Logan is offering one lucky commenter a paperback bundle of VIOLET and This Mortal Coil. These are great books you definitely want on your shelf!