Saturday, June 29, 2013

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Nuts, Bolts and Cranky Pants: Female SFR Archetypes for Writers By Maybelle

[The Galaxy Express is excited to present a series of posts by a Very Special Guest. Her name is Maybelle and she's here all the way from sweet home Alabama to give us her take on archetypes in science fiction romance. This is the eighth installment of a ten part series. Maybelle's posts will go live Saturday 9 am EST).] Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5 Part 6 Part 7 


Them first two archetypes is likely to be Martian by birth. They’re the most agro of the eight with the biggest designs on ruling the galaxy by hook or by crook. Most of the other archetypes are fellow abductees. Except for you and me, of course, because when the Earth God done made us, he broke the mold. So here’s the competition:

Thursday, June 27, 2013

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Free Ebook: TALES FROM THE SFR BRIGADE Anthology

Exciting SFR news! TALES FROM THE SFR BRIGADE is a new and *free* e-anthology of science fiction romance stories! It's currently available from Smashwords.

Here's the blurb:

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

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99 Cent Ebook Deal: Heidi Ruby Miller's GREENSHIFT

I enjoyed Heidi Ruby Miller's AMBASADORA (see my post about it here), and so I couldn't resist sharing the news about a great promotional deal for GREENSHIFT, book two in the series! Here's the press release courtesy of the author:


To celebrate the cover reveal for Greenshift, the e-book will be temporarily 99 cents at Amazon!

A tale set within the world of Ambasadora.
Mari's rare eye color makes her a pariah within Upper Caste society, which is why she prefers plants to people...except David, the former Armadan captain who shuttles scientists around on a refurbished pleasure cruiser.
But someone else is interested in Mari and her distinctive look--an obsessed psychopath who tortures and murders women for pleasure.
When the killer chooses Mari as his next victim, the soldier inside David comes alive, but it is Mari who must fight for her own life and prove she isn't as fragile as the flowers she nurtures.

Greenshift by Heidi Ruby Miller
Cover Art by Bradley Sharp
Foreword by Dana Marton
Space Opera/Science Fiction Romance paperback coming from Dog Star Books in August 2013
 

Friday, June 21, 2013

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SFR Brigade Midsummer Blog Hop: "Out of this World" Adventures & Prizes



SFR Brigade Midsummer Blog Hop Headquarters
Welcome aboard The Galaxy Express for the SFR Brigade 2nd Midsummer Blog Hop!

Visiting another world through a story in the comfort of one's own home is one of the best travel bargains known to humankind. Science fiction romance in particular features a love story set against a variety of fascinating backdrops. In keeping with the SFR Brigade 2nd Midsummer Blog Hop's "Out of this World" theme, I'd like to take you on a brief tour of some inventive sci-fi romance settings.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

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SF Signal's Mind Meld Tackles Apocalyptic & Post-Apocalyptic Romance

SF Signal's Mind Meld this week focused on Love in the Time of Apocalypse...:

Love In the midst of apocalypse…whether it be an apocalyptic or post-apocalyptic scenario, or a dystopian one, such as in The Hunger Games, or just amidst things blowing up, etc, our need to find a partner to share the angst is still a strong one. So, we asked our panel…

Q: What are a few of your favorite fictional couples that fell in love in an extreme situation? Why do you think this type of story is so popular?
It's a topic that fits right in with science fiction romance so I wanted to make sure you knew about it. The discussion includes a few authors of SFR such as Jessa Slade, Joss Ware, and Delilah S. Dawson.
 
The last post-apocalyptic sci-fi romance I read was Ella Drake's DESERT BLADE. What about you? What appeals to you about these stories? Is there a certain kind you'd like to read more of?

Joyfully yours,

Heather

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

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There's Plenty Of Room For More Android Romances!



Amazing Stories featured a column by MD Jackson about Mechanical Men and Women in science fiction. It's a fun snapshot of iconic robot/android characters, plus other interesting facts involving sexy android art. The post didn't cover the romance angle, but hey, that's where I come in!

I've blogged about this trope before, but the Amazing Stories column inspired me to revisit it. Science fiction romance offers its fair share of romances involving androids. It's a fascinating way to explore the "Other," meaning that point in time when an android/robot becomes capable of romantic love. Despite the relatively small number of stories pairing humans and androids/robots, there's actually quite a bit of variety.

The stories range from sweet heat levels to erotic SFR. The science fictional aspects are varied as well. Some stories, like Tanith Lee's SILVER METAL LOVER (bittersweet ending alert!) focus on the psychological/cultural/sociological themes, while others are hard SF in nature.

Catherine Asaro's books, such as THE PHOENIX CODE and ALPHA, incorporate the nitty gritty hardware involved. L.J. Garland's MECHMAN is all about the action-adventure. I even wrote a couple of android romances myself: THE WATCHMAKER'S LADY and HEROES ARE FOREVER. Both titles are squarely in fantastical fantasy territory.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

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Blogging At Coffee Time Romance & Other SFR News


I'm at the Coffee Time Romance Steampunk page blogging about steampunk romance covers (talk about a topic that never gets old!). In my post, I discuss the challenges facing these covers as well as some of the popular steampunk romance cover elements (so there's eye candy, too!).

At Spacefreighters Lounge, Pippa Jay poses an interesting question: Is There a Market For Non-HEA Romance?
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Winner of Angelia Sparrow EBook Giveaway

It's time to announce the winner of Angelia Sparrow's ebook giveaway--winner's choice of HARD REBOOT or HEART'S BOUNTY.

And the winner is...Carol!

Congratulations! Carol, please email me at sfrgalaxy "at" gmail.com to claim your prize. Subject line: Sparrow.

Thanks so much to everyone who entered!

Joyfully yours,

Heather

Saturday, June 15, 2013

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What Happened to the Martian Women Anyway? Female SFR Archetypes By Maybelle

[The Galaxy Express is excited to present a series of posts by a Very Special Guest. Her name is Maybelle and she's here all the way from sweet home Alabama to give us her take on archetypes in science fiction romance. This is the seventh installment of a ten part series. Maybelle's posts will go live Saturday 9 am EST).] Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5 Part 6



With the women in space, the first thing you’ll notice is many archetypes are abductees from Earth. This is when they ain't somebody's mom, sister, grandmom, old nanny abductress, female Robot computer machine, or ex-hussy. For whatever reason, the men of space often get a female shortage, and that's why they come after us. Plus the Traxian Seers keep sending them here, like the seed of destiny is on our little blue planet.

Maybe so, and maybe it’s because Earth girls are easy. You be the judge.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

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Jessica E. Subject Ebook & Swag Giveaway



Jessica E. Subject has two erotic science fiction romance shorts out this month from Decadent Publishing: ANOTHER NIGHT, ANOTHER PLANET (m/f) and NEVER GONNA DESERT YOU (f/f). I wanted to help celebrate the releases, so the author came aboard with prizes for a few lucky passengers!

Here are the covers and blurbs for her new stories:


Limited by status…
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More Posts About Sexism In Science Fiction


The sexism in SF conversation has gone supernova in the past few weeks. I'm rounding up a few of the more SFR-centric posts that have surfaced recently.



At Its Comic Book Day!, TOUCHED BY AN ALIEN author Gini Koch weighs in on the SFWA Bulletin controversy and Stuart Sharp's controversial Talking Sci-Fi Romance post:

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

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A Tag Tour Of Isabo Kelly's Naravan Chronicles

Since writing THE PROMISE OF KIERNA'RHOAN (Samhain Publishing), Isabo Kelly has expanded her Naravan setting with two indie titles. INTERFACE (short story) and THE SECRET OFNARAVA (novel) are the next installments (click the titles to read the story descriptions).

The stories stand alone, but ideally, the Naravan Chronicles should be read in order: 1) THE PROMISE OF KIERNA'RHOAN, 2) INTERFACE 3) THE SECRET OF NARAVA.

I've now read all three stories and decided to tag the latter two. While they differ in terms of romance and external plot, both stories share many common elements. Therefore, I created a composite, non-spoiler tag list.

* INTERFACE includes a suspense/mystery thread. Intensity level: mild

* THE SECRET OF NARAVA includes more information about Naravan mythology and history. There's also some exploration of the political ramifications of a certain discovery.

* Both stories feature scientist heroines. The heroine in INTERFACE is a nanotech researcher. The heroine in THE SECRET OF NARAVA is a paleontologist. In both stories, much of their day-to-day work occurs off stage (to make room for the romance, possibly)

* Both stories feature bodyguard heroes (the heroes are connected by a business partnership); they are strong, silent types

Sunday, June 9, 2013

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Angelia Sparrow's Adventures In Fandom, Plus Giveaway



Introduction: So I've been reading Angelia Sparrow and Darren Bloomquist's HARD REBOOT (2012, Amber Quill Press). While this isn't the first book of Ms. Sparrow's I've read, this title in particular contained such attention-to-detail worldbuilding that I became very curious about her background as a science fiction and fantasy fan.

I'm sure my reaction had a great deal to do with the dark, post-apocalyptic setting and vivid cyberpunk elements. Something about the prose told me she was committed to creating a compelling world for her readers.

I'd characterize HARD REBOOT as a gritty cyberpunk suspense story with strong romantic elements. Its particular style of graphic sexual content means it's not for the faint of heart, but the tale is thought-provoking nonetheless. (I'm hoping to blog more about HARD REBOOT when I'm done, but in the meantime, a review at Hearts on Fire provides many helpful tags).

Given my experiences reading Angelia Sparrow's work, I invited her aboard to blog about the SF/F influences that informed her writing. As it turns out, she's had a very interesting journey and is here to share it with us.

Details for an ebook giveaway follow her post. Enjoy!

Saturday, June 8, 2013

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Two Final Male Archetypes for the SFR Genre By Maybelle


[The Galaxy Express is excited to present a series of posts by a Very Special Guest. Her name is Maybelle and she's here all the way from sweet home Alabama to give us her take on archetypes in science fiction romance. This is the sixth installment of a ten part series. Maybelle's posts will go live Saturday 9 am EST).] Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5


Type 7m: The Reckless Brother of the King of the Galaxy Who Turned Space Pirate and Has Little Desire to be King (aka the Swashbuckler): Used to be, the spare heir just played Galactic Yuffball or lazed around seducing women and stuck close to the home planet, but this new breed, Reckless, spends his time doing extreme planet sports to disguise his pirating habits.

Friday, June 7, 2013

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Blogging About Tech-Based Time Travel Romances At Heroes & Heartbreakers

I'm always on the lookout for science fiction romances featuring tech-based time travel elements, so I was excited to see a link to a recent post about time travel romances. Perhaps I'd encounter some new titles. Unfortunately, it wasn't quite the roundup I was expecting. Therefore, I decided to revisit the topic for Heroes and Heartbreakers: Have Tech, Will Travel: Big List of Tech-Based Time Travel Romances.

(Click here to read my previous post on the subject. Many thanks to all of the passengers who contributed title recommendations.)

For easy reference, I also created a Goodreads list for the books: Time Travel Romance With Time Machine Or Other Scientific Device.

Joyfully yours,

Heather

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

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SFR News & Links For June 2013

This month, the sci-fi romance releases are hitting the ground running with stories ranging from romantic military SF to scorching erotica and everything in between!

New releases

THE PIRATE'S GRAND PLAN (re-release of A PIRATE'S PASSION; future historical) - K.S. Augustin

A Republic “future historical”

Gilthen Ahn is captain of the Darck Banks cartel, a pirate band working deep in Republic space. He has six ships under his command and, unless he finds money to pay off his substantial debts, he’ll lose everything.

Tera d’Olzon is a privileged member of Republic high society, tryiing to make a difference by thumbing her nose at everything her family stands for. Unfortunately, things haven’t quite turned out the way she anticipated and, while running from Security Forces, she is “rescued” by Gil’s cartel.

The reasonable thing for the cartel to do is to ransom her. But that won’t bring in enough money. So Gil hatches a plan….

Visit Sandal Press for more information.

HIS CLOCKWORK CANARY (steampunk romance; Victorious Glorious Darcys #2) - Beth Ciotta

Sunday, June 2, 2013

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Guest Blogging At The Serious Reader

I'm guest blogging at The Serious Reader about Science Fiction Romance: A Frontier of New Adventures. The feature is a combination of an SFR 101 and the reasons I find it so appealing.

I presented a number of titles for readers to explore, but you're welcome to visit and add your own favorites!

Joyfully yours,

Heather

Saturday, June 1, 2013

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Out With The Old (Boys Club), In With The New (Generation of Progressive Genre Fans)


Hot on the heels of the SFWA Bulletin controversy starring Mike Resnick and Barry Malzberg comes another chapter in the battle for equality and respect in fandom. 

Stuart Sharp (via The Story Hub) was Talking Sci-Fi romance (note how the "r" in "romance" isn't capitalized). Initially, he lays out what he believes to be the difference in structure between SF and romance. Then he goes on to question the scope of competence of authors who write sci-fi romance (particularly those stories that adhere to the conventions of genre romance):

Then there's a question of understanding the field. Sci-fi is reasonably well defined by this point. Most people who write in this genre understand know what it is about…it's a big soup of cultural references that we all get, right?...

…Except that the new authors coming into the field don't necessarily get them. Their references are all to do with the Formula, grand gestures, love triangles, the tropes of romance or chick lit or YA. They don't understand the reasoning behind some of the arguments that have been bubbling for years. They certainly don't get that Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep Reference you made in chapter three.

What Mr. Sharp is trying to say, authors of SFR, is that Ur Doin' It Wruong. You think you're being "stunningly original" when in fact "an idea has been given a pretty thorough going over by the sci-fi world already."

And here's the cherry topping Mr. Sharp's anti-SFR sundae:
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Fully Functional SFR Archetypes for the Reader and Writer By Maybelle


[The Galaxy Express is excited to present a series of posts by a Very Special Guest. Her name is Maybelle and she's here all the way from sweet home Alabama to give us her take on archetypes in science fiction romance. This is the fifth installment of a ten part series. Maybelle's posts will go live Saturday 9 am EST).] Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4


To recap, the previous archetypes are: 1. King of the Galaxy (the Chief); 2. Dispossessed King of the Galaxy Who's Too Pissed and Horny to Do Anything About It Just Yet (the Bad Boy); 3. The Gruff Alien Bodyguard Assigned to the Destined Mate of the King of the Galaxy (the Best Friend); 4. The Wastrel Brother of the King of the Galaxy Who Secretly Wants to Be King (the Charmer); and 5. The Confused Grouch Who Don't Realize He's Actually King of the Galaxy But Was Hidden Away at Birth by His Alien Nanny (the Lost Soul).

Since I promised last week we’d find out if robots are built to last and can keep going and going and going, I’ll just move on to archetype number six.