Author name: Lesley L. Smith
*Please tell us about your publications. I’ve published seven novels and many short stories, mostly science fiction. See the bio below for specific titles. I love the interplay of the logic science with the fun of imagination. I also love strong quirky characters. Kirkus Reviews said of my novel Quantum Murder “Imagine if Janet Evanovich had given Stephanie Plus a science-teaching degree…”
What are your views on authors commenting on reviews? Never, never, never!
How do you deal with bad reviews? I try to avoid reading any reviews. This helps eliminate the problem!
Sometimes, you can’t avoid it, as with editorial reviews. In this case you need to know so you can (usually) tell them not to publish it. Then, you just have to grit your teeth and power through it.
Sort these into order of importance:
- Great characters
- Awesome world-building
I must admit I read for character. And I write for character.
How much research do you do for your work? What’s the wildest subject you’ve looked at? I’m a physicist in my day job, and I write a lot of science fiction, so I don’t generally have to do a lot of research. The one exception to this was my time travel novel Temporal Dreams—which was based on the Australian Aboriginal idea of Dreamtime. I did a ton of research on this. It is wild and utterly fascinating. It taught me that scientists don’t truly understand what time is. Yes, that’s a strong statement—but I stand by it!
How influential is storytelling to our culture? I think storytelling is at the heart of our culture. Storytelling is oldest profession, in my opinion. I think storytelling is how we truly communicate with other human beings. It binds us together into a common human culture.
What’s the best advice you’ve received about writing/publishing? Just do it! I wish I’d gotten serious about the whole writing/publishing thing earlier. If anyone reading this is considering taking the plunge: Do it. Do it now.
Tell us about your latest piece? One of my recent novels was Temporal Dreams. This is actually a time travel novel. I love time travel and I wanted to write a novel about it for a long time, but I also wanted to try to create something fresh. I had to do a lot research to see what was already out there. (This was awesome research, by the way!) I ended up using the Australian Aborigine mythology of Dreamtime—which is fascinating.
What’s your next writing adventure? Right now I’m trying to finish the third book in my Quantum Cop series. The protagonist, physicist Madison Martin, uses quantum physics to solve mysteries. It’s called Quantum Mayhem and I’m a little bogged down in the middle. It’s tough coming up with mayhem that can still be resolved. Wish me luck! J
What is the last book you’ve read? I just reread the Collegia Magica Series by Carol Berg. Wow! The world building and characterizations are truly amazing.
Is there a message in your books?
I do have some pretty strong messages in my books. Since I write science fiction and often have female protagonists (and am a female scientist), I’m trying to show readers that anyone can be a scientist. In particular, women and people from under-represented groups can be awesome scientists! I try to encourage people, in general, to make dreams and to follow them.
How important is writing to you?Writing is very important to me. Once I made the mental leap from someone who wanted to be a writer to someone who was a writer—it was huge! I try to write at least a little every day.
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Lesley L. Smith has published seven science fiction novels including Temporal Dreams, The Quantum Cop, A Jack By Any Other Name, and Conservation of Luck.
Her short science fiction has been published in several venues including “Analog Science Fiction and Fact” and “Daily Science Fiction.” She is an active member of the Science Fiction/Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) and Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers (RMFW).