Bujold Does It Again

The fabulous Lois McMaster Bujold is discussing her latest novella, “Penric’s Fox,” with the fabulous Eight Ladies Writing right now.  From our Micki:

“Lois McMaster Bujold’s new novella, “Penric’s Fox” came out last Tuesday, and she’s agreed to answer three questions about writing it for the Eight Ladies Writing Blog (August 12, 2017: Michaeline: Lois McMaster Bujold and Three Questions About Writing “Penric’s Fox”). I hope you’ll come over to see what she has to say about process. The new novella is the third in the Penric series, but the fifth she’s completed, which I found fascinating. How does a writer write out of order like that? It’s all about writing what wants to come next.”

You cannot go wrong with Bujold, or with the Eight Ladies, for that matter.  Go check it out.



15 thoughts on “Bujold Does It Again

    1. I met her once when I was having a hypomanic meltdown and I missed the chance to talk to her. She was lovely, though.

  1. It’s waiting on my Kindle. 🙂 I’ve sort of promised myself to finish reading some other books first, because Penric’s Fox will be lovely but over much too fast.

  2. Thanks so much for helping to get the word out! We do these interviews by email, and Lois always has great things to write about the state of the business and the art of writing. She sometimes talks about these things unprompted on her GoodReads blog. I remember in particular a series of posts she did about covers for ebooks when she got the rights back for some of her back catalog, and reissued them as ebooks. Really clean design, and her artist is a long-time friend and fan, as well. He knows those books.

    Jilly’s talking about indie publishing resources today, which is a subject on many of our minds over this past year. (-: The RWA conference in Orlando was a great meeting of minds and ideas, it seems!

  3. Another Penric! I don’t care about the order of stories. I want it! Heading out to Amazon right now to spend my money on this book. Thank you for the heads-up, Jenny.
    PS: finally one of Penric’s books has a decent cover.

  4. I have never read any of these, and I know it’s not Good Book Thursday, but if I was to start them, would I be best to read in chronological order or published order?

    1. Oh, it depends on so many things. My personal preference would be to read it in story-chronological order, I think.

      But if you are short of time, you could read it by itself. I wouldn’t think that would be ideal because a lot of the fun of the story is exploring the divinity system that has been set up by the other books. Reading “Penric’s Demon” and “Penric and the Shaman” should provide you with enough theology to enjoy those explorations.

      On the other hand, the characterization is there. You could read it on one level during the first read, and another level after you’ve read more books in the series. There are several good ways to do it.

      But best? Yeah, best would be to set aside a day, order in some lunch or make a plate of sandwiches, get yourself some liquid, and just read, read, read in book-chronological. Totally spoil yourself in her writing! I would estimate it would take me 12 to 14 hours to get through all five. (And if I could get a second day, I’d totally re-read the other Five Gods Universe books, too. Especially Hallowed Hunt, so I could triangulate on some of the theological theories — because I’m a nerd (-:.)

      TL;DR? Or feeling slightly scared? Just pick up “Penric’s Demon” and see how you like it. If you do well with it, I think you’ll like the rest. (I swear, I’m the worst book-pusher in the world . . . .)

  5. New Bujold announcements are my second favorite thing about your blog. *does a happy dance* (The first one being you, of course. 😉 )

    Wasn’t sure at first how I felt about jumpin around the timeline– on the one hand, I’m anxious for more resolution after Mira’s Last Dance, but on the other, I’m delighted to revisit the characters from Penric and the Shaman. On the whole, I’m glad she went back, not only because it’s a wonderful story in itself, but it also fills in some of the more subtle blanks left between Shaman and Mission, things that felt like I’d been told rather than shown. *resists discussing examples that might be spoilers* I think rereading Mission and Dance will be even more satisfying now….

    1. Can I fan squee with you? I think five or ten years from now, it’s really not going to matter at all about how the novellas were birthed into the world. People will just start at the beginning, and read to the end, and it won’t be that big of a deal.

      I think there’s so much rich material from Penric’s learning days. We haven’t seen him get into a major argument with Desdemona yet. (If we never see them fight, that’s OK. It’s an uneven fight in a lot of ways because Penric is not only kind and smart, but he’s got the whole authority of the Order behind him — they know how to deal with demons.) I can only imagine an argument stemming from The Stupid Misunderstanding meme. So I wouldn’t mind seeing more Penric during his apprenticeship to the princess-archdivine.

      But gosh, I’m burning to know what happens with Nikys!

  6. Thank you again. I read ‘Fox’ and then went back and reread all of Penric’s books. Now contemplating taking The Curse of Chalion on my next weekend away.

  7. There’s a spoiler thread over on Lois’ Goodreads Blog. I haven’t had a chance to visit it this week, but it was pretty full of good things the first time I visited. (-: I need to schedule a major re-read, too. First thing, get off the internet.

  8. I suggest reading The Hallowed Hunt first. Knowing the world and its religions helped me a lot when I read Penric’s Demon. Bujold doesn’t give the degree of detail in the Penric stories as she did in the 5 Gods’ World novels, and I needed to figure out what was going on and why (and loved doing so). Also, Penric’s Demon read to me as an incomplete story; it sets up the rest of the Penric stories, so I’d suggest reading it after the Hallowed Hunt.

    Otherwise, Mira’s Dance immediately follows Penric’s Mission with the same characters. Also, Penric and the Shaman completes a missing puzzle piece from The Hallowed Hunt, which I found very satisfactory. I’m looking forward to reading Penric’s Fox.


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