Monday, 9 December 2013

Female authors of gothic, horror, fantasy & science fiction (part 7)


Welcome to the final blog in this series:

Holly Black (1971-) - Spending her early years living in a decrepit Victorian house obviously had an impact on Holly, who went on to write the children’s fantasy series Spiderwick Chronicles (2003-2004) - five books in two years! Holly has also written a number of young adult fantasies, graphic novels and short stories.

Sarah Pinborough aka Sarah Silverwood (1972-) - A prolific and witty tweeter as well as a writer of horror fiction, supernatural thrillers, fairy tale reworkings and tv scripts. Daughter of a diplomat, Sarah grew up in the Middle East, spent many years in boarding school and had a career as a teacher. Sarah uses the Silverwood psuedonym for her young adult fiction. Her writing goes from strength to strength, with 2013 being a big publishing year including her VERY saucy fairy tale trilogy Poison, Charm & Beauty (all in 2013), Ripper-era thriller Mayhem (2013) and the sublime and touching The Language of Dying (2009, but reprinted December 2013). I love Sarah, she's very funny.

Stephanie Meyer (1973-) - Controversial for introducing the vampire who sparkles with her best-selling Twilight series (2005-2008). This, as I’m sure you’re aware, is a vampire romance that has been turned into a big movie franchise, leading Stephanie to sell over 100 million books and earn over $50m in 2009 alone. Although receiving an English BA in 1997, Twilight was apparently her first attempt at writing fiction. An author whose religious belief (Mormonism) hasn’t stopped her delving into territory others might shy away from, her character actions are probably directly influenced by this background.

Gail Carriger (1976-) - Gail is the pen name of Tofa Borregaard, archaeologist and steampunk fiction author. Her main work to date is the Parasol Protectorate series (2009-2012), which is paranormal romance about a woman without a soul living in an alternative history version of Victorian England, where Werewolves and Vampires are treated as equals to the Human citizens. Gail is currently working on a 4-book Finishing School series (2013-) for young adults.

Erin Morgenstern (1978-) - Although Erin (usually a painter) has only written one book so far, it’s made a bit of a splash. The results of one of Erin’s National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) products became the inspiration for her novel The Night Circus (2011).

During the course of this blog I’ve noticed a gradual move from gothic horror to fantasy, with sci-fi tending to remain on the fringes. There has also been a dramatic increase in the number of recognisable authors as time goes on as well as an increase in the volume of output from those authors. Encouraging trends, but I’d like to see some more gothic tales balancing out the fantasy. It’s also encouraging to see that perseverance has paid off for a number of these authors (and paid off handsomely for some). If you’re a female author waiting for a breakthrough, don’t lose heart!

As always, feel free to leave comments and thank you for reading this blog series - I hope you've found it informative and have added some books to your reading list.

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