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Anyone can call in and ask questions: At the appointed time, dial 1-857-232-0155 (long distance charges may apply, depending on your phone plan). Enter the Conference Code: 245657. To raise your hand and ask a question, dial 5*. To Mute yourself, dial 4*.


New interviews are being scheduled. Watch this space for details.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

26: Tim Powers: Talking Writing with the Author of On Stranger Tides

Tonight for the first call of the official Second Season of Farland's Authors Advisory Conference Calls,  we had the distinct pleasure of welcoming two time World Fantasy Award and Philip K Dick Memorial Award winning author Tim Powers as our guest.  Tim is the author of such award winning novels as: The Anubis Gates, Last Call, The Stress of Her Regard and On Stranger Tides.  Tim shared with us a literary concept that has been in existance for a long time and has become connected with his works. The concept of  "Secret Histories", which is defined as a " revisionist interpretation of either Fictional or real (or known) historical events which  claim to  be deliberately supressed, forgotten or ignored by established scholars".

Tim answered such questions as:
  • What makes real world history a good starting point for writing a Fantasy novel?
  • How much of your historical research is used in your novel?
  • How would you accurately portray an historical figure and have them as a character in your novel?   
      For over an hour of answers to these and even more intriguing and insightful audience questions, press "Play".

Click here to download the MP3.


  1. Excellent call. Very informative and great suggestions about involving all of the senses. THank you for doing this for us.

  2. You guys probably get tired of hearing me say, "that was one of the best interviews yet," but it continues to be true. Tim was inspirational. I liked his down-to-earth approach to squirting supernatural causes into everyday events. I've already suggested one of his books (Three Days to Never) to my book club. Here's hoping it wins our group vote. Even if it doesn't I'll probably buy a copy. The premise is too interesting to pass up.

    -- david j.

  3. David,
    No we don't tire of hearing from our faithful callers and participants that we're doing a good job and bringing on guests you all like and whose advice you find useful. Not by any strech of the imagination!

    Having Tim on was amazing for us as well and, though he told me he was initially nervous about being on a conference call, it didn't show once we got going. I'm glad you enjoyed it and found it useful- I know I did!

  4. Mike, Thank you so much for recommending this site. I have subscribed to it. It is always very interesting to read how a writer is thinking as he/she writes. I was very interested in Tim's interview. It was excellent! He is very clear in how he blends history and fantasy and I am drawn to that combination. Certainly this interview has interested me in reading some of his books (I'm new to SF, but will ask my husband if he knows of him). Since I'm signed in, it looks like, I'm not sure how to become an "unknown (Google). Sorry about that.

    1. You're very welcome! I'm glad you enjoyed the call and I hope you like Tim's works if you've been able to read them. I know I was thrilled beyond measure to do this interview and I consider it one of my best.

  5. Love getting any and all the information I can get. This was the best. Thank you for sending it to me Mike.

  6. Anytime Jeanette! I love sharing information and helping fellow aspiring authors just like our guests do. Glad you found it useful.


Discuss the call, praise the author's works, ask any questions (though we can't guarantee the author will come by to answer them)