Interview & Giveaway with Tanya Huff

Tanya HuffThe Bookpushers are pleased to present an interview with Tanya Huff. She has written 28 novels and numerous short stories available in collections and anthologies. She has been on E’s autobuy list since she first discovered Ms Huff’s works in the early 90s. She also had a TV series based on her Blood series — think vampires, female police detective, and other supernatural beings. Her latest book, The Wild Ways, following after 2009’s The Enchantment Emporium releases November 1st. E’s review of The Enchantment Emporium was posted yesterday here. Ms Huff is also sponsoring a giveaway at the end of this interview so keep reading to find out the details. The winner will be announced on release day 1 November along with a review of The Wild Ways.

BP: Tanya thank you so much for joining us today and sponsoring a giveaway. You have been published in the SF/F field since 1988. What got you started?

Tanya: I’ve always been a story teller. When I was three and my father was at sea, I told my grandmother a long and involved story about a spider in the garden that she wrote down and mailed to him. I have no memory of this, of course – there are weeks I don’t remember Tuesday – but the letter reappeared a few years ago. Apparently, I did the illustrations myself. (they were about what you’d expect from a three year old *g*) Maybe if I hadn’t discovered Heinlein’s young adult fiction I would have become a nature writer, but my school library had a full set of Heinlein’s, everything Andre Norton had written to that point (late ’60s) and a collection of Ace Doubles. From that point on, there was no turning back. I wrote all through high school – I called them books but they were really novellas – and taught my history teacher that yes, I did want to share what I was doing with the class so if he didn’t want me to do it, he shouldn’t have asked me if I wanted to. Finally writing something I thought was good enough to be sent to a publisher was just a natural progression.

BP: I know since I first discovered SF/F I have seen things change as a reader. What changes as a writer do you think have been significant?

Tanya: As a writer, all I can do – all any of us can do – is write the stories we have, write them the best that we can, and hope they find an audience. That hasn’t changed. It never will. If you want to be published, write a good book.
What has changed is the domination of the industry by a few big players. After Lucas proved there was money in SF back in 1977, smaller publishing companies began being bought up by the larger companies then the larger companies were, in turn, bought up by multinational corporations. (The staff at Bakka, NA’s oldest SF book store, called it PacMan publishing as imprint after imprint was devoured.) Add to that the simultaneous condensing of distribution into a few large chains bookstores and the whole industry becomes dependent on only a few players. When the economy tanks, it doesn’t take much to topple the whole house of cards. Border’s bankruptcy will be echoing through the publishing industry for some time. Hopefully, small independent bookstores will move into the places Borders has left vacant. Those small independents, with no shareholders breathing down their necks, will be able to pick up more small press books, hand selling them. The small presses will get bigger…
…and the whole cycle will start again.
As far as content is concerned, at the moment, paranormal romances are hot. Romance readers read a lot more than SF/F readers and in an effort to expand the SF/F market, romance readers are being courted. In a year or two, something else will be hot. As a writer, it all comes back to wring a good book.

BP: Within the big umbrella of SF/F you have works that fall in what is now known as pure fantasy, UF, and military SF with significant characters as varied as gods and goddesses, bards, cats, thieves, witches, vampires, werewolves, aliens, a Gunny Sergeant and most recently Dragons. What drew you to explore these different areas?

Blood PactTanya: I just tell the stories I have to tell. That sounds facetious, but it’s the answer. I could have done nothing but write Blood books for the last fifteen years, but I’d said everything I had to say about those characters at novel length with Blood Pact so I wrote “the end” and moved on.

BP: You mentioned in the afterword of the first Valor book, Valor’s Choice, that you took your inspiration from a real against all odds battle. Throughout the entire series you were able to keep an accurate portrayal of the military atmosphere. This is something I have found that a lot of authors struggle with. How were you able to accomplish this?

Valor's Choice CoverTanya: Because I’m just that good. Okay, that was facetious. *g* Part of it probably comes from spending time in the Naval Reserve, part of it may come from my grandfather who was career military, and part of it from researching fewer facts and more first person accounts of what it’s like to be in the military in both war and peace. There are a lot of soldier’s memoirs and blogs out there – the men and women who serve are telling their stories. All I do is listen.

BP: Have you encountered any difficulties using Canadian landscapes as your setting?

Tanya: No. I had to explain what a twonie was (it’s a two dollar coin) but other than that I’ve had free reign. My editor told me once that American readers consider Canada an exotic local. I wish I didn’t have to lose my u’s but it’s been so long now, I’ve learned to cope…

BP: You live in Canada, a country that has moved forward past the US regarding certain rights, have you had to deal with any backlash regarding the relationships you include in your work from your US audience?

Smoke and ShadowsTanya: If I have, it’s been stopped at the publisher and hasn’t reached me. I had a reader worried about the pre-martial sex in Blood Ties and I got called a war pornographer by a (very minor) US reviewer when Valor’s Choice came out. The Smoke books, (Smoke and Shadows, Smoke and Mirrors, Smoke and Ashes) which have a gay protagonist haven’t done as well as my other books, but there’s no way of determining exactly why.

BP: Out of your varied works which is your favorite and why?

Tanya: I love everything I’ve ever written. Unlike some authors, I can happily go back and reread my old stuff. I honestly don’t have a favourite.

BP: Who is your favorite character and why?

Tanya: Vicki, [Blood series], is the character most like me but again, I don’t have a favorite. That’s a bit like asking who’s my favorite child. While I’m writing them, that character – those characters – are my favourites. Right now, I’m very fond of a stubbornly logical mage and an annoyingly teenage werewolf.
(E: Sounds good…)

BP: The Enchantment Emporium introduced us to the “family”, dragons (yes E has a weak spot for them) and what could be called a jumble shop. Where did you get the inspiration for this family?

Tanya: I’m not entirely sure… I know I wanted to write something where the power was with the women and the real power with the older women. Probably because I’m becoming an older woman and I wanted the characters I identify with in real life to be the ones kicking ass. (In The Night Watch, Terry Pratchett has this wonderful bit about putting the Grannies on the barricades and I may have found inspiration there.)
I do find it kind of funny how people miss things that are right there in the text about the Gales. Everything the antagonist says about the family, about the women in the family, is absolutely true. I like to think that text makes it very obvious that “you can’t say no to a Gale boy” is about equivalent to “you can’t say no to a kitten” and when Dmitri is in the haymow with half a dozen girls – you should be feeling sorry for Dmitri.
Harvest HomeMy personal cutline for the book is: It’s HARVEST HOME, with a laugh track.

BP: Did you always plan to write about Charlie in The Wild Ways or did that develop as the previous book moved along?

Tanya: The Enchantment Emporium was absolutely, positively, without question going to be a stand alone book. There was only ever going to be one. No more. Nada. And then, as I was working on the not!Napoleonic werewolf story, I kept thinking about Charlie. About how easy it would be to write a book with her as the protagonist because she has so much more freedom than the rest of the Gales. About how much I really liked writing the Gale family and didn’t want to stop. And then, I heard Heather Dale sing about Selkies and that started me thinking and the next thing I knew I was up to my elbows in The Wild Ways. It kind of took me by surprise, actually.

BP: Do you have any more stories planned in this particular world?

Tanya: Two books. That’s it. Just two books in this world. It’s not a series. I was standing firm. And then I was talking to my editor about one of the things that came up in The Wild Ways and I said, “Well, they can’t…” and she said, “But you already have…” and I said, “I suppose I could…” and she said, “What if you…” and I said, “That would work.”
And then I said, “Okay fine. I’ll write a third book but that’s it. Just one more…”

BP: ok I can’t wait for the third book and I really hope this trend of “just one more…” continues. Thank you for your answers Tanya. Now for the readers out there Tanya is graciously sponsoring a contest that is open worldwide. To enter leave a comment mentioning what author or story got you started reading SF/F. Good luck.


  1. krishna says

    Love Tanya’s books especially the Valor series, anybody knows when the next book is going to come out? the books that got me into SF was Rendezvous with Rama by Arthur.C.Clarke.

  2. Ivana H says

    I’ve read my first fantasy book when I was eight – it was The Hobbit and it’s still my favorite book..
    Thank you for the giveaway!

  3. says

    This sounds very cheesey, but it was Tanya Huff who got me reading Sci-Fi and Fantasy. I read Blood Price, Gate of Darkness Circle of Light, and The Fire’s Stone about eight million times in high school. The Blood series are my default go-to comfort reading. (Strange but true.)

    Unless you count Watership Down, which my father read aloud to me at a young age.

  4. says

    Well, I read “The Dark Crystal” in fifth grade, but I really have o place the blame with my sixth-grade English teacher. The rest of sixth grade read “The Hobbit”. We read Arthur C. Clarke’s “Childhood’s End”. For the next three years, I’d drop in on him occasionally: “Hey, Mr. Kreke, I need something to read.” Because of him I read “Dandelion Wine” and “Watership Down” and lots of other great stuff. But it really darted with “Childhood’s End” when I was twelve years old, which seems…appropriate, somehow.

  5. Crystal Paul says

    I found 2 things in 4th grade: A Wrinkle in Time & Star Trek. Those kept me sane through the rest of elementary school.

  6. Marsha McLean says

    What Author or book got me started? I honestly can’t remember. Seriously. I read The Hobbit at about four years old (really; my mom was reading it and left it laying around, I would pick it up and read til I got to something that was too mature for me and I had to go away and think about it). The story took me a very long time to get through. So Tolkien was probably the first, though I can’t swear I hadn’t read something else before that. From the moment that the lightbulb went on that symbols on paper meant sounds which made words which made stories I have read as eagerly as fish drink.
    I have complained to Tanya (and others) that they write too slowly. Tanya told me something along the lines of “suck it up”.
    SF/F has always been my preferred genre – I would much rather read of hope and possibility than humdrum everyday or tragedy. Especially when I see something I read about 30 years ago in SF come true, like smart phones, or retinal scanners, cloning, etc! How marvellous, and how fortunate I am!
    I adore Tanya’s books for the characters, and for how “real” her stories are. No one has that superpower that always saves the day; her heroines and heroes are real people, people who get hurt and are frightened and slog though it anyway because it’s the right thing to do. He books aren’t rainbows and fluffy unicorns, but real people in what-if situations, worlds that don’t exist but maybe we wish they should!

  7. Kate Summerbell says

    Hurray for references to Heather Dale! So nice to hear her music inspires other professionals.

    My childhood was filled with fantasy and sf stories. The first adult fantasy novel I read was a gift from a friend in Grade 6 (when I was 11). The White Dragon, by Anne McCaffrey. It was amazing and formative (despite being the third in a series, which I didn’t notice at first). Still one of my favourite stories, to this day.

    As for the Smoke series – sorry to hear it is under-read. It is my favourite of all Tanya’s series, and Tony is hands-down my favourite character, since the moment he was first introduced in the first Blood book.

  8. s.e. says

    I love Tanya Huff’s writing in general and I REALLY loved the Enchantment Emporium:) I can’t wait to read this new book but can’t afford to buy it just now. i an excited to hear that there will be a third book in this world.
    I have been reading fantasy/scifi for as long as I can remember. I had the Hobbit read aloud to me for sure along with the Lord of the Rings. I remember reading Madeleine L’engle books at quite a young age, those might have been the ones to start getting me hooked:) I have to admit that I love the growth of the urban fantasy genre.
    p.s. I recommend that people follow Tanya on twitter and also read her journal on Live Journal if they want to know what she is working on etc. It’s great to be able to learn more about authors without feeling like a stalker.

  9. says

    It was “A Princess of Mars” by Edgar Rice Burroughs. I’d read some SF before but I just didn’t “get” it. After reading Princess it was as if a light went off and I was in ecstasy. I read all the other Mars books in rapid succession then the rest of his books then discovering there were sections of the libraries and bookstores devoted to SF I went after other writers and I’ve been deep in the realm of SF ever since.

    ERB wasn’t a great writer but when he was good he was a great storyteller who could grab me by the collar and whisk me into the book from which I’d emerge a few hours later wondering which planet I was on 😉

  10. skitz_phenom says

    I was a voracious reader as a child, and was encouraged in that by my Mom, who had a terrific ‘library’ with quite a few genres. I remember reading “A Wrinkle in Time” quite early – which definitely had a big influence – and being a fan of SciFi/Fantasy on TV (Star Trek, Doctor Who, etc…) but i had very broad reading habits and was likely to focus more on stories about animals than anything ‘spacey’ or too fantastical. The story that really cemented my interest in SciFi/Fantasy was “Slow Sculpture” by Theodore Sturgeon, which I found after borrowing my Brother’s collection of 1971 Hugo Award winners. It sold me on the idea that SciFi could be more about humanity than hard science.

  11. Lissa Allcock says

    I can’t easily pull a single one out. My childhood was pervaded by things like The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe, Freaky Friday, Mrs Frisby and the Rats of Nimh, The Borrowers and The Phantom Tollbooth. I have clear memories of heavy rereading of a book about a boy who changed into a dog. There are so many children’s books with at least threads of fantasy in that identifying a particular starting point in impossible for me. Did I read the Tripod books first or some of Heinlein’s books? When did mum buy me A Wrinkle in Time? How old was I when I first read Charmed Life? Who knows. Clearly I was doomed from very early on :-)

  12. says

    I am a big fan. I loved the Blood series and also the spin off Smoke series. I really enjoyed The Enchantment Emporium and have been anxiously awaiting The Wild Ways. As for what author or story got me started reading SF/F that would be Robert A. Heinlein’s Stranger in a Strange Land.

  13. Rose Kegler says

    I can’t remember the first book I read that started me down the path that led to amazing authors like Ms. Huff but I’m grateful for that. I always read things like The Chronicles of Narnia, The Rats of Nimh, The Borrowers – by grade 4 I was reading at a grade 10 level so my librarian tried to keep me challenged. Anything that involved space travel, time travel or alternate universes captivated me, especially if there was a mystery or crime to solve. As I got older my interests expanded to the supernatural – especially Vampires. I really believe Tanya’s Henry is one of the best Vampires ever written.
    I guess I’ve always believed that there’s more out there than we’re aware of, so reading SF/F was the natural place for me to wind up. I’d rather read about the possibilties of worlds and creatures yet to be discovered than the consistently everyday. My mom has always told me I’m too busy dreaming or lost in a fantasy world. It took me almost 50 years to finally say, “So?”

  14. Jess says

    Hmm, i’d have to echo most of the comments (tolkien, wrinkle in time…) but add susan cooper and the dragonlance and belgariad series. It was early years of high school when my bff and i discovered tanya huff (child of the grove) and there was no turning back….

  15. Anne says

    I believe one of the first fantasy series I read was Narnia back in grade 1 or 2, and I’m sure The Hobbit was soon after, along with wonderful authors like E. Nesbit and Enid Blyton. I found science fiction through Monica Hughes, William Sleator and Madeleine L’Engle until I was old enough to grok Robert Heinlein’s work (which took up a whole shelf in my parents’ collection).

    I discovered Tanya Huff’s novels after seeing her read at a Toronto scifi convention in my teens, and she’s been on my autobuy list too ever since. I’m excited to hear of a third book about the Gale family, but I really hope we see the not-the-Napoleonic werewolves soon! Love the concept =).

    (This thread is excellent for reminding me of all the wonderful novels of my past!)

  16. Shawna says

    Well, the first book that really had me reading was in the second grade (I was 8)… my teacher pulled a copy of Zilpha Keatley Snyder’s “Season of Ponies” off of the bookshelf and told me to give it a try. I still love that book and her book “The Velvet Room”…. both of which I re-read at least once a year. After that it was on to the Narnian Chronicles.

    As far as sci-fi goes, the first one I ever read was when I was 10…Alan Dean Foster’s “Splinter of the Mind’s Eye” had come out the year previous and I stumbled onto it by chance in the library. I had no idea movie tie-ins even existed! …but I found I preferred fantasy over sci-fi…though Orson Scott Card got me re-thinking that with the Ender novels.

    I discovered Tanya’s work when “Blood Price” came out in 1991… I was working for a book store at the time and was stocking the SF/F bookshelves when it came in with the new releases…. I thumbed through it for a few minutes and then purchased it on my lunch break… and have been a fan ever since.

  17. Sharon Brooks says

    I was left home alone a lot as a kid and to amuse myself I would watch old black & white movies on the television. The ones that captured my attention the most were Dracula, Wolf man, The Mummy, and King Kong. Those were all fantasy. I read every fairy tail book that my elementary school library owned. My father gave me children’s books on understanding Physics and Chemistry which I also found fascinating. Then I discovered When Worlds Collide and After World Collide. I was in heaven. After that came Asimov and Heinlin and Bradbury and Octavia Butler who continued to feed my curiosities. I was hopelessly hooked.

  18. says

    The book that got me interested in Fantasy was Robin McKinley’s The Blue Sword – love that book! I recently read Cordelia’s Honor by Lois McMaster Bujold and LOVED it, so I’ve slowly been reading her Vorkosigan saga.

  19. Jo Owen says

    I think the first adult sci-fi book I remember reading was Friday by Robert Heinlein, my library didn’t have a very good selection and at that time sci-fi and fantasy was just filed in with general fiction so finding any was hit and miss. The first fantasy book I bought was Blue Sword by Robin McKinley, which I still love today.
    My first Tanya Huff book was Blood Price and I loved that series despite the covers – which gave me the creeps! My favourite Tanya books are the Summon the Keeper series and The Enchantment Emporium.

  20. anna_sinistra says

    I can’t recall the very first, but the earliest I can remember were probably the Narnia books and Tamora Pierce.

  21. Miriam says

    I always enjoyed fairy and folk tales, and read many during elementary school and later.
    I read the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings books in the mid-1960s, and maybe one or two other SF/Fantasy books, but I didn’t start reading a lot of SF/F for a couple more years. I can’t remember what came first – it was a long time ago (I’ve got about 6 years on Tanya). Maybe Bradbury’s Martian Chronicles, or Anne McCaffrey.

    I was introduced to Tanya’s books by my Mom, who loved most genres. she was a voracious reader, and greatly enjoyed mysteries. She introduced me to the Blood books. I then moved on to Tanya’s other books.

    I am very happy that Tanya was surprised by a second book about the Gale’s, and yet a third one, though whatever stories come to her, I’ll happily read!

  22. Mary Beth Robb says

    I started reading Heinlein when I took 8th grade library science in the 60’s and haven’t stopped yet.

  23. says

    I think the first Science Fiction I read and really liked was by Anne McCaffrey – to Ride Pegasus. Prior to that, all the science fiction I’d read was depressing post-apocalyptic stuff (this seemed to be very popular in the 1980s).

    As for fantasy – I grew up reading every single fairy tale or myth or legend I could get my hands on, and as soon as I discovered people were writing them for adults, too, I was hooked. I honestly can’t remember which came first.

    I do remember Merryll of the Stones by Brian Caswell being one of the first bits of fantasy I came across, and it’s still a wonderful story.

  24. GTD Wannabe says

    That’s a tough one. I recall devouring Pamela Sargent’s Earthseed when I was early teens. Heinlein’s Friday was something I read when I was in my tweens, and I loved it. But I think the earliest book I remember that was ‘out there’ was Pierre Berton’s The Secret World of Og – it was read to us in Grade 4 or 5 – awesome.

  25. Kelly says

    Tolkein was the writer that got me interested in SF/F. I also read a lot of Mercedes Lackey, Charles de Lint, and Tanya Huff as I went along. Somewhere in there I was reading Heinlein’s Number of the Beast, and everything snowballed from there.

  26. Cindy says

    The first fantasy book I remember vividly was “The Dark Tide” by Dennis L. McKiernan. What a revelation! I reread that trilogy ever few years.

  27. Marty Halvorson says

    I started reading SF standing by the magazine rack at Mr. Wilson’s drugstore in the early 50’s. He thought kids needed to read, so, I could read a magazine as long as it wasn’t damaged and I kept out of the way of other customers.

    I already was hooked on reading (read Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn in 2nd and 3rd grade), Then I discovered Astounding SF and F&SF while reading for free at Mr. Wilson’s Drugstore. From there I discovered libraries and was off, never to look back. My favorite author was Theodore Sturgeon.

    My Dad and I were the only readers in the family. With 5 kids, my Dad didn’t have much time for books or money to buy them, and my Mom just wasn’t a reader, so, I mostly did it on my own.

  28. Marty Muenks says

    I got into science fiction from A Wrinkle in Time and then an old torn up paperback that I found on my parents’ book shelf of Second Foundation (i had no idea at the time that there were other Foundation books….now that’s an example of a book you can read without the others.)

  29. Mez says

    The very first fantasy book I’d read as a kid, still living in Russia, was The Hobbit byTolkien. The first fantasy book I read as a 13 year old in English was Alanna, the First Adventure by Tamora Pierce. It’s still one of my favorite books ever. I read Sing the Four Quarters by Tanya Huff soon after that. It was my first Huff book, but definitely not my last. Tanya Huff has been on my instant buy list for the last 12 years.

  30. Saruby says

    The book that stands out to me as an introduction to SF was actually an anthology called “Tomorrow’s Children”. I checked it out of the local bookmobile, and then checked it out again, and again all summer long. It’s been many, many years and I don’t remember all of the stories or authors, but it started me reading Heinlein and it was all downhill from there. In fact, it must have been less than a year before I bought “Methuselah’s Children” at a book sale. Fantasy is harder to remember, because so much children’s literature falls into that category, but I remember reading Tolkien in 7th or 8th grade.

  31. Dee says

    Ooh, a giveaway! I just ordered the Emporium on the basis of the recent review (and the Canadian setting) and now I learn there is a second book.

    As for fantasy/sci fi first book, I dunno. I loved fairytales and progressed from there. Like other posters, there was Madeleine L’Engle, CS Lewis, Tamora Pierce, Robin McKinley, Patricia McKillip, Andre Norton, Heinlein. Heck, I’d say reading Bill Peet in early readers counted as fantasy. Possibly the very earliest official fantasy genre story I read that I can recall was McCaffrey’s Littlest Dragon Boy in our third grade reader (it was in the 2nd half of the book that our class was deemed to slow to finish but I loved it and read it over and over). It was another 3 years before I was exposed to her Harper Hall series and then went on a major Sci-fi/fan jag through the public library system, but it still took me a couple of years to realize why the Pern world seemed so familiar (duh…).

  32. JenM says

    I love stories about witches, yet somehow, I’d never heard of this before. Thanks for adding to my wishlist! Honestly, I started reading SF/F so long ago (40 yrs. ago or so) that I can’t remember the first book I read. I read exclusively SF/F throughout my teen years and I adored Tolkien, Poul Anderson, Andre Norton, Frank Herbert, Frederick Pohl, Isaac Asimov, Anne McCaffrey, CJ Cherryh, Terry Brooks, and so many others.

  33. Barbara Elness says

    The first SciFi book I can remember reading and that really got me hooked was Robert Heinlein’s Stranger in a Strange Land. I remember reading a lot of SciFi anthologies as well, it exposed me to a lot of fabulous authors. I think the first fantasy books I read were The Lord of the Rings.

    Barbed1951 at aol dot com

  34. Kai W. says

    It was Anne McCaffrey’s Dragonriders of Pern series that got me into reading SF which was followed by Issac Asimov’s books and then so many others afterwards.

  35. Mary Preston says

    My first experience of Fantasy began with Enid Blyton’s books as a child. I loved all the elves etc. My love for Fantasy grew from there.


  36. Rebecca says

    I usually say that Harold and the Purple Crayon was the first sf/f book I read and I haven’t stopped since. (Though arguably it was The Runaway Bunny or The Wicked Wizard and the Wicked Witch.)

    Honestly, I don’t know. I can tell you that I read Mists of Avalon when I was about 8 and the Harper Hall trilogy somewhere in there. Also a bunch of Diana Wynne Jones and Tamora Pierce and Andre Norton, but I couldn’t swear in what order or exactly when I read all those.

  37. Jean says

    As usual, the answer depends on your definition of SF–and even then, I can’t quite answer, because I don’t remember starting to read. I know I got _The Wizard of Oz_ for my fifth birthday, and _The Hobbit_ the next year, and then the Narnia books and _A Wrinkle in Time_ and so many others. But Oz was probably the first fantasy.

    The first hard SF I can remember reading was a YA, Alan Nourse’s _The Universe Between_, at age twelve; around the same time, my father introduced me to his collection of Judith Merril “Best” anthologies, and I also found _Dangerous Visions_ in the library. (Apparently somebody had left it on the shelf; when I brought it up to the front desk to check out, the librarian glanced at it and said, “Yuck! That’s not ours; you can just take it.”) And then, the week I started high school, Dad gave me a package that contained _Foundation_, _Dune_, and _Stranger in a Strange Land_, and for the next few years I read everything SF I could find.

    _Gate of Darkness, Circle of Light_ was probably my first urban fantasy.

  38. Anne says

    I probably read The LOTR trilogy first, but it was not a positive experience for me. I couldn’t keep track of the characters and what was going on (same with Dune). Charlaine Harris’ Southern vampire series probably started my desire for Urban Fantasy.

  39. erinf1 says

    Thanks for such a wonderful interview! I’ve never read Ms Huff and it was fun to read about her. I’m definitely interested in her books now :)

    The first Scifi/fantasy that I can remember reading was Lord of the Rings. I think I found it in the school library when I was in 6th grade and plowed right through the trilogy. I was inspired and then sought out as much as I could find.

    Thanks again!


  40. Claire says

    The first Scific book I read was one of Andre Norton’s Space Trader novels. I must have read 4 or 5 of her SciFic books before discovering her Witch World series.
    That led me to Heinlein, Asminov, Marion Zimmer Bradley and Tolkien.

  41. Ellen says

    I first got started in SF/F as a 12 year old reading Anne Logston’s ‘Shadow’ series – all about an elf who is the accidental Guildmistress of Theives. Tanya Huff’s ‘Sing the Four Quarters’ was the second SF/F series I ever read and I’ve been hooked ever since! I now own at least one copy of all her novels, some of them multiples (the downside of reading in the bathtub).

  42. Ellyll says

    Stretching WAY back over the years, I think my first was Zenna Henderson (bonus points if you know who she is 😉 ). I’m beyond thrilled to hear that there will be a new Gale family book. I loved the Enchantment Emporium (since it was a Tanya Huff book, I bought it back when it came out in hardcover). Thank you so much for letting me know about it – I’d missed the new book entirely!

    * goes off to do happy dance *

  43. Mara says

    Hi, Tanya.
    Congrats on the book and thanks for the interesting interview. I have to tell you that you were one of the first paranormal writers that I ever read and I fell in love with your writing and the entire genre. In terms of SF, my love of it goes back to growing up watching Star Trek (the original and only in my book).
    When I was younger, I read a lot of Asimov (sp?) and some other writers than I can’t remember.
    Thanks again for the giveaway!
    msmjb65 AT gmail DOT com

  44. Jean says

    @Ellyll: Hi, Ellyll! I loved Zenna Henderson too. In fact, my cat (now) is named after her…and the NESFA Press volume of the complete “People” stories is on my bookshelf.

  45. Argantel says

    Thank you very much for the give-away Tanya. It was a pleasure reading your interview.

    Now, who got me started reading SF/F … probably George Lukas’ Star Wars films. Back when I watched them, SF/F was not such a big genre in the book world. At least not in the one I had access to as a child.

  46. MD Cormier says

    I believe the first S/F book I read was The Hero and the Crown. I then read all of Robert Heinlein’s books. My favorite Tanya Huff book(s) is Valor. I wish she would write something about David Gale from The Enchantment Emporium.

  47. Mama Mary says

    IIRC, it was the Edgar Rice Burroughs “John Carter of Mars” series, when I was about 8. by the time I was teen, I had gobbled up every SF/F book I could get my hands on. Clarke, Heinlein, Asimov, LeGuin, Tolkien, Van Vogt – it didn’t matter, I read it all.
    As I got older, and my reading time evaporated, I strayed away from “hard” sci-fi and more into fanatasy and “speculative” fiction. (I love all the different name that are invented for storytelling.) The “Valor” series, which I consumed on audiobooks, was the first “space battle” series I really enjoyed. Somehow, Tanya Huff wove in enough engaging characters to keep me from pondering the science too much – which is why I usually stay away from sci-fi and stay on the fantasy side. It sucks to be reading and all of a sudden be thrown out of the willing suspension of disbelief by bad science.
    I’m really looking forward to finding out more about the Gales!



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