Charles Tan’s excellent Bibliophile Stalker Blog has just put up a brand new interview with Aliette de Bodard conducted by Marshall Payne. In it Aliette talks about her background and, of course, her writing, and she also discusses the odd but fortuitous circumstances which brought about her first book deal…
You just signed a three-book deal with Angry Robot. What can you tell us about that?
Well, this was totally a case of serendipity. Last year, I was rather miffed when British Airways cancelled my flight home from World Fantasy, leaving me stuck in a shabby hotel with not much in the way of distraction. By sheer luck, there were also two people in the hotel: John Berlyne, who was setting up a new agency in the UK, and Marc Gascoigne, editor of the new HarperCollins Angry Robot. Together, they cajoled me into pitching the novel I had completed at the time (and which I’d had no intention of pitching at all, making for a rather flustered few seconds while I got my sentences under control).
And, as it turned out, the first became my agent, and negotiated a three-book deal with the second, for the novel in question and two sequels. It all feels very surreal, but there you have it.
The novel is called Servant of the Underworld, and is a fantasy-mystery set in Aztec times, featuring death-priest-cum-investigator Acatl (and ghostly jaguars, bloodthirsty gods and fingernail-eating monsters). It’s a wild, fast-paced ride through a blood-soaked land where the old gods are manifest, and quick to demand their due in all kinds of unpleasant ways. It’s due in print Spring 2010.