Ellen Kushner

Ellen Kushner

After college, I wanted to be a writer, but there aren't any jobs like that, and I knew I'd be a lousy waitress because I'd drop things and be rude to people. Happily, I lucked into jobs as a fantasy editor for Jim Baen at Ace Books, and then got kidnapped by David G. Hartwell to work at Pocket/Simon & Schuster. I quit to write my first novel, Swordspoint, which took longer than I thought it would, so I supported myself writing Choose-Your-Own-Adventure (tm) books. But writing is a lonely business, and I love being onstage. So after I wrote my second novel, Thomas the Rhymer, I moved to Boston to become an announcer for WGBH public radio, later becoming the writer and host of PRI's national series Sound & Spirit. During that time I wrote The Fall of the Kings with Delia Sherman, and pulled an old manuscript out of a drawer, something I'd started after Swordspoint, about Alec's teenage niece, and my agent said I should finish it, so I did. I call it TPOTS (pronounced "teapots"), but its real name is The Privilege of the Sword. About this time, it became clear I was writing all the Riverside novels out of order, a practice I continue to this day, as I am currently working with a bunch of friends on Tremontaine, a collective serial published by Serial Box online, and SAGA Press in dead tree format. I love reading my own work aloud, and have been hideously indulged by "Neil Gaiman Presents" & producer SueMedia, who allowed me to read all 3 Riverside novels into a microphone for Audible. I am proud to have been one of the original writers on Terri Windling’s shared world "Bordertown" series, so I convinced Holly Black recently to co-edit Welcome to Bordertown, inviting younger writers who grew up with the series to join some of us old-timers on the Border where Elves on Motorbikes is pretty common. I sometimes teach creative writing at Clarion, the Odyssey Workshop, and Hollins University’s Children’s Literature summer M.F.A. program, where students say I do not coddle them, but I do bring them Turkish Delight, so that's OK. I now live in New York City with my wife, the writer, teacher, editor & best friend Delia Sherman. We have no cats, just plane tickets and theater stubs.
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