Several months ago, I announced that author Glen Cook would be joining us to answer your questions about his book, and September’s fantasy Book of the Month Club selection, The Black Company. So several of you read the book, took part in the discussion, and posted comments for Glen. And waited. And waited. And waited some more. “What the hell is going on?!”I’m sure more than a few of you asked. “Did Mallozzi lie to us? Is he blowing us off like the time he promised us a musical episode? Or that puppy for Christmas? Or to drop by and say hi the next time he was in town?!”

Well, I can assure you that nothing could be further from the truth. I’m still working on that musical episode (or should I say movie musical?), you will be getting that puppy for Christmas, and I have every intention of dropping by the next time I’m in town so please make sure to have some vanilla ice cream on hand if you’re planning on serving pie otherwise I won‘t eat it. As for author Glen Cook – he was experiencing some computer issues and was incommunicado for a while. Eventually, he got those computer issues resolved, received the questions, and started working on them – only to suffer another computer-related issue halfway through his responses that caused him to lose everything he had written (See! It’s not just you. It occasionally happens to professional writers as well.). To his credit, rather than throw up his hands in surrender and make me answer the questions for him, Glen demonstrated the stalwart determination of one of a Black Company’s veteran by starting over, answering your questions, and then celebrating by pillaging the tiny hamlet of Jefferson City.

So, a huge thanks to Glen for persevering. And another big thank you to everyone who lost faith in me yet, nevertheless, still returned to this blog in order to check in for possible SGA movie spoilers, take me to task for my creative decisions, and find out what I had for lunch (a tarragon chicken sandwich on flatbread). Today, I finally turn this blog over to author Glen Cook. Tomorrow, I’ll tell you all about how I spent an hour this afternoon wandering through Vancouver’s seediest neighborhood in search of my car. Lotsa laughs.

Over to Glen…

KaziWren writes: “1. Why did you choose not to include more details about the Dominator and the Lady as their rule was the harbinger of the darker times the story is set in?

2. You seemed to put distance between the reader and the Rebel. By simply naming them that way (eg. the Rebel) I never felt connected to them or their cause. Did you want that? To keep the reader entrenched with the company?

Thank you for your time. I am reading the second book now. “

GC: 1) The time of the Domination in the Black Company world is as remote as is the Elizabethan Age in our. That time was a harbinger of the modern Anglo-Saxon world but does not need more than cursory review in anything set in modern times.

2) There is no reason to connect with the Rebel. They are the Enemy. The Company is the protagonist.

Thornyrose writes: “A few questions for Mr. Cook. First, what was your MOS, and you final rank in the navy before you rejoined the civilian world? How much influence did your military experience play on your developing the Black Company novels? When you did the Black Company, did you at the time see it as a starting point for a series of novels, or is it something you just kept coming back to? If you did see it as a series, how far ahead had you outlined the story arcs when first doing Black Company? Finally, under what conditions do you prefer to work when writing? thank you very much for your time and participation in Mr. Mallozzi’s blog, and thank you also for a great reading experience.”

GC: I was a Quartermaster in the Navy. 2nd Class, OKed for 1st Class if I’d shipped over. My military experience had a great deal of influence on my writing. Black Company began as a series of novelettes, grew into a trilogy, and kept on growing. It continues to grow. I am doing a novelette now for an anthology and will, should I survive long enough, write more novels. The conditions question I do not understand.

TimR writes: “Is it true that some of the characters depicted in this book were modeled on people you knew? If so, how much of Croaker is you (and vice versa?)

GC: In the early books many of the lesser characters were based on people I knew. Croaker does have a lot of me in him.

Terry writes: “To Glen Cook: You’ve written a few series over the years. Do you have a world that you prefer to write in? Do you get bored with your characters the further in you get? If you do get bored or annoyed with them, how do you adjust your approach to them? Have you ever looked at your older books and thought about what you would have done differently in them?”

GC: The world I find easiest is that of the Garrett novels.

I don’t get bored. I do get frustrated and pessimistic about works as a whole. By the time I finish a book I am convinced that it is utter crap.

Yes, sometimes I see things but they’re just inconsistencies or mistakes. I’m content, otherwise.

Glochidiagirl writes: “Questions for Mr. Cook:

1) Did you have a story line for the entire Black Company series in mind when you started writing, or did you “make it up as you went along”?

2) I’ve read that you based the character of Croaker on yourself. How much similarity is there between you?

3) There has been a lot made about the fact that the Black Company series is so dark and gritty. Are you more interested in “less than perfect” characters or would you ever write noble-hero-on-a-noble-quest-to-save-the-world type book?

4) What make a book interesting to you?”

GC: 1) I am an intuitive type of writer. I make it up as I go. For me there would be a lot less excitement if I knew the story before I started

2) Croaker is thinner and smarter. I own my own home and have a bank account. Our outlooks on the universe are pretty close

3) I don’t feel that my stuff—barring maybe Shadows Linger—is all that dark. No noble heroes for me. They don’t exist, and never have.

4) Best answer: I know it when I see it.

Antisocialbutterflie writes: “Q: I saw Croaker’s fantasies of the Lady as a means of validating his actions. Do you find that this sort of romanticizing is common among soldiers? Was this something you found yourself doing while you were in the service?”

GC: No and no to both queries.

SometimeReader writes: “For author Glen Cook: 1. What is it about dark characters that most appeals to you? Do you find that they allow you a freedom in writing that a more traditional hero would not? 2. The use of magic as presented in The Black Company was very different from what we’ve seen in traditional fantasy. Was this a reaction to traditional tropes? As Joe pointed out, Goblin and One-Eye were a far cry from Gandalf. They were loose cannons and the last thing you wanted to do was get caught in the crossfire of their rivalry. 3. How hard was it to find a publisher for The Black Company? Did the fact that the book strayed so far from convention help or hinder its publication?

GC: 1) I don’t see my characters as dark. I see them as people. Traditional heroes don’t happen till the original has been dead a long time and subsequent generations have remodeled them for the needs of their time

2) Funny. I never thought of Black Company as being that different. It must be, though, because people have been telling me so for twenty-some years

3) It was not a hard sell, though the editor who bought it did, initially, reject it because she didn’t like anybody in it. She came back and asked if she could have it two months later because she couldn’t get those people out of her head.

Kellyk writes: “1. I read somewhere that when you first started writing, you were holding down a fulltime job at the time on an assembly line. You would write in your head while you worked the line, then quickly jotted down your thoughts on papers during short breaks, then resumed working the line and writing in your head. How does your approach to writing differ today?

2. Some readers have commented on the lack of backstory elements in The Black Company. There are a lot of unanswered questions. Is this because you approached this as the first book in a longer series and intended to fill in the backstory in later volumes?

3. You have a very unique militaristic approach to fantasy. Are there any authors that you feel influenced your work?”

GC: 1) I’m retired now and my kids are gone so I waste a lot more time. I still do first drafts by hand. The two books I’ve tried to do from scratch on computer turned out incoherent and had to be rebuilt almost from the ground up.

2) What lack of back story? What is missing that you need to know? The characters know who they are and where they came from. And most are the kinds of guys who would lie to you if you asked.

3) Authors who have had a serious impact on me are Tolkien, Jack Vance, Fritz Leiber, John D. and Ross MacDonald, Talbot Mundy, Dashiell Hammett, Raymond Chandler and, amongt the still living, Robert B. Parker. But I read constantly, across a wide spectrum, and everything influences me somehow.

Three apples fell from the tree, one for the listener, one for the teller, and one for the audience unseen.

Thanks, all.

Glen Cook

56 thoughts on “October 7, 2008: Author Glen Cook Answers Your Questions

  1. Vancouver has a seedy section? Canada is not all clean, safe, and filled with nice people? It can’t be so! Or perhaps it’s an issue of comparison. Maybe what is seedy to a Canadian isn’t quite the same as it is down here. But how did you come to lose your car, that required such and adventure to find it? I know, we will find out tomorrow. Good thing I (usually) have internet acces at work in the evenings…
    Many thanks to Mr. Cook and his answer session. I enjoyed his very direct way of answering questions. It is reflective of many military retirees I know. But there is no ambiguuity there, and that’s nice to see. Thank you for making it possible to ask the questions and have Mr. Cook participate.

  2. I asked for a puppy for every birthday and christmas when I was a child. I still do – out of habit.

    I was also left traumatised to find out that Lassie was really a boy.

    Life is so cruel.


  3. I asked for a horse for my birthday when I was little and woke up to find one in the front yard. Unfortunately it had wandered from the paddock down the road.

    Oh well.

    Cheers, Chev

  4. To Thornyrose:

    There was once a story that went around in Canada that an American film company had come up to Toronto to film. They found it very frustrating because, after having trashed an alley to film, they left to film in another area. when they returned to film in that spot again, the city of Toronto had cleaned everything up on them. This might just be an urban myth, but, I think our clean and nice reputation as Canadians is well earned. Several of my American friends said they couldn’t get over how people up here say, “You’re welcome”, when they’ve said, Thank you”, after purchasing something.

    Patricia (AG)

  5. joe said: I have every intention of dropping by the next time I’m in town so please make sure to have some vanilla ice cream on hand if you’re planning on serving pie otherwise I won‘t eat it.

    You want me to cook a pie? Are you insane? Although it might make for a good video – you pulling all sorts of faces. How about I put my trust in the professionals? What’s your favourite pie? Me, I love a good lemon meringue pie or apple. I used to love making the leaves to go on top when I was little. They were always anatomically correct.

    Cheers, Chev

  6. @ Thornyrose: I’m from Toronto and went to Vancouver this summer for vacation. I’m a news and media junkie so I read the paper everyday. I came across a map of a section of Vancouver where there were several red dots and alerts–repeated crimes were happening all over this section! In Toronto, though we have a huge restriction on handguns, many guns get to us across the Buffalo boarder. So, these red dot can mean gun shootings, therefore I thought this must be the same. No. This was a map of purse snatchings. Oh and a few restless dogs in the area. Purse snatchings, and restless dogs…purse snatching. I suppose the same person who had the restless dogs was also snatching the purses. Hmmmm. This is not that a-typical a “scare” in a Canadian city. Ya. I think you’re right–it is relative.

    @ Joe: you know I’m not a picky eater, and I’m pretty blase about what I put in my cake hole–my husband is a foodie–he’s so much more refined about dinner than I am. I could careless if I had to eat a plate full of cold raw potato peels–meh! Dirty underware, uncooked spiders–meh! Is it relatively edible? I’ll eat it–though I won’t eat intelligent creatures, rodents, omnivores, carnivores nor baby anything–so that leaves kelp. I won’t even eat octopus (creepy smart creatures).

    Oh, and the whole reason that brought on my tirade: I hate wraps–yuk! No wraps, flat bread fine–wraps no. Restaurants think they can put a wrap around ka ka and say “Hey Here’s a Wrap–YUM!” No. it’s ka ka.

    BTW I was being cheeky about shark shamoo (I think I said shark moo moo)



  7. I haven’t lost faith in you, though I have to admit I did want to send you a pair of those faux human skin fashions I posted here in the form of undies. I did want to send you a pair that said dumb ass across the ass–so that a wraith would be tempted to kick you there, every time you declare that wraith wear hominid gotchy potchies.

    Anyhow, right now my husband and I are watching the McCain Obama debate while my husband is reading Planet Crap. The peeps on Planet Crap have named the discussion thread “Debate Bit**es” and having a drinking game (knowing those guys their drinking a stiff drink of 7-Up. That’s what we’re drinking), everytime McCain says “Well, listen folks….” Okay, here he goes again–



  8. Thanks to Glen Cook for stopping by!!! Didn’t have time to read Black Company, but the insight into an author’s mind is always much appreciated =)

    A very special Stargate *musical* episode?!?!? Why hasn’t this been done yet? 🙂

    And don’t feel bad about losing your car, Joe… I get lost all the time… it’s how I learn to find my way around =)

  9. Ykickamoocow writes: “Your idea for the season 6 episode “Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow” sounds brilliant to me. Is there any chance of that idea being turned into a Atlantis movie?”

    Answer: Highly unlikely. Truth be told, the story was originally pitched as an SG-1 episode. If you’re interested (and nice) I might even post the original color-coded outline for you.


    I will continue to remain hopeful though as the idea does sound like it would work really well in movie form. Also i am very interested in reading the original color-coded outline if you have time to post it on your blog.


  10. WK, I gave up on watching the debates – I’ll read the transcripts tomorrow so I won’t let the visuals and voices taint what they are really saying (if anything).

    Thanks to Glen Cook for stopping by to answer questions!

    *Dang, his answers sound a lot like Croaker* I enjoyed ‘The Black Company’ and am moving on to the second set – ‘The Books of the South’.

    joe said: I have every intention of dropping by the next time I’m in town so please make sure to have some vanilla ice cream on hand if you’re planning on serving pie otherwise I won‘t eat it.

    Joe, how do you feel about apple crisp? I think it goes quite well with vanilla ice cream and I make a darn good one. So let me know next time you’re in the Chicago area and I’ll whip one up for ya!

  11. Thank you, Mr. Cook for answering my questions. 🙂 But I must say I STILL find myself curious about the time of the Domination. Call me a sucker for history. 😉

    @Wraith Cake: LOL!

  12. Is your car playing funny buggers with you?

    So Joe, I have the Sara Lee Deep Dish Apple Crumble High Pie in the freezer on hand. But we always have one for the unexpected drop in visitor. Although probably not suitable to your palette because it contains fruit and is a dessert. I’d keep ice-cream in the freezer too, but I have a husband that can polish off a 2 litre tub in one sitting. And people wonder why I can’t put on weight, I never get a chance to eat the good stuff!

    While I’ve never been to Vancouver, my Dad spent a lot of his corporate life travelling, including Canada. He said it’s the most Melbourne town he’s been to. So thinking of some of Melbourne’s seedy parts, I hope you took a club lock with you.

    I second thornyrose in her statement about the way Glen Cook answered his questions. It’s such a relief sometimes when you get the answer as it is; no spin, no fluff, no jargon. Saves everyone a lot of time and effort in interpretation.

    Mary – What is considered “sentient” depends on your viewpoint. I consider most animals sentient, including cows. Spend enough time with any animal, you realise how beautiful a soul they have.

  13. I managed to lose an entire afternoon hunting in the seedy part of Vancouver looking for my mum’s car. I finally bused home in despair, worked up the nerve to report the missing vehicle to my mother … and walked past the parking lot and saw the car happily snoozing in its space. The stereotypes about absent-minded professors? Yeah, they’re true.

  14. Tarragon Chicken? Sounds delicious, I might have to try to make some this weekend if I can find a recipe.

    So what kind of pie do you like? I’m partial to apple crumble, but I love most all pies. I can make a beautiful pumpkin pie as well. 😀 Cherry Cheesecake is the next to top my list of desserts. Yum!

    I always used to have vanilla ice cream with a piece of hot pie, until I came to Australia! Now, when I asked for vanilla ice cream on my pie, people give me strange looks. They use regular cream on pies here. I tried it once, but it just isn’t the same nor as good as ice cream! I always have ice cream on hand in my house though. 😉

    I read your blog every day because it’s entertaining. I have to admit that I do look forward to hearing about SGA spoilers, but I love hearing about the strange cuisine and your wonderful dogs as well as your thoughts and experiences just as much or even more than SGA. I love to read and love how you share the books with us. Sadly paperback books here are three times as much as they are in the US. That, of course, isn’t the entire reason that I haven’t bought the book selections yet. My fiance has banned me from entering book stores since I went in to buy a book for someone as a present only to come out with the present plus four books for myself. *grin*

    I was one of those strange kids who would beg my parents to take me and a friend to the library every weekend instead of the mall. I could easily spend hours in a book store and leave with my arms full of books.

    Once we’re back in the states, and I have a job, I’ll be looking up all the books that you recommend, until then, I may try to find the nearest library to see if they have any of the books listed. I have my doubts though, given the fact they call the movies 300 and Juno new releases at the movie rental place. lol. I think we’re definitely a little slow to catch up to the rest of the world here.

    I hope you have a good night and pleasant dreams!

  15. Anyone else notice the strange peacefulness here today? You can almost here the crickets. Ah, the serenity.

    Alexandria We do? I notice in Aus we tend to get cream and ice-cream. Can’t beat the real vanilla bean ice cream.

    Have a good night Joe.
    I think I caught your insomnia.
    It did allow me to get a big chunk of the second Traveler book knocked over.

  16. Hey Joe! Tell Martin Wood that I saw a couple of nanoseconds of him on the news earlier tonight! Looks like he was part of the “file film” stuff for the Canadian film industry… I totally missed what the news piece was about, probably something to do with the Election — my father uses the remote control as a piece of cutlery at the dinner table! — so the moment was fleeting.

    Whatever, I glanced up at the TV and saw Martin!! Made my meal a much better experience! :-]

  17. Hi Joe,

    Thanks for the dedication for my sister Amy. She loved it…made her feel great. The test results came back ALL CLEAR!! No sign of any bad cells anywhere in her body and certainly nothing on the bones!! We’re a bunch of happy people here. I think you’re blog must be good luck as I suspected!

    Thanks for the dedication for her and all your work, Joe!


  18. @ Wraith Cake – gotchie-potchies!! *ROTFLMAO!!!*

    *waves at fellow Aussie Narelle*

    hey Joe…just picking up on your cue from yesterday to send in questions for Brad Wright…

    Mr Wright (are you? hehehe)

    I’m sure many Stargate fans are hoping to get some kind of reassurance that Universe will NOT be “90210 in Space”…can you tell us why you think that the audience demographic needs to be ‘lowered’, when the majority of sci-fi fans are in fact in the upper percentile of intelligence, including the younger ones who are already fans? By limiting the cast to under-25s (and believe me, reading those quicky synopses of their characters, they sound like a right bunch of snotnosed twats) do you really think that they will have the depth and experience, let alone the security clearances, to participate in the Stargate program?

    If you can please give us a plausible reason why some stupid senator’s bimbo daughter would be a member of a top-secret military operation, I’m all ears.


  19. Ok Joseph, it is 2:10am here and I can’t sleep again. The power of suggestion you instilled.

    As for pie making, I used to asked my grandmother to show me how she made her homemade pies. So she would, but I would start wandering as far as my attention went and never did figure it out. Tried it once and well, lets just say that it probably could of made the weird food purchase of the day video.

  20. HA! I knew Stargate – the Musical wasn’t just a part of my vastly peculiar imagination!

    *attempts to Jedi-mind-trick Joe* A stargate musical is a GOOD idea…you want to write a movie-musical starring a Wraith queen as the primadonna…you do not want to sell me death sticks…

  21. Hiya Joe.
    What a wonderful video from yesterday it looks so real! What is it made out of? Did u touch it? I wanna touch it lol I really had no idea they used a real puddle-thing its awesome, screw a puppy for christmas I want a giant blue stargate wormhole puddle please ^^

    Question for Brad (the almighty one):
    Thanks for giving us two brilliant shows over the years mate (thankyou to you Joe btw) ^^
    1. Why are you so awesome?
    2. How did stargate become something you wanted to do? Did you just see the movie and go “wow! Im gonna be awesome and make a series from that!”
    3. Will the Atlantis movie be released in Australia? Because I heard it would play on scifi In the US first, so what does that mean for us Aussies? We have scifi but its only playing season 3, our free-to-air tv gets all the new shows first.

  22. @ Hachi: Nay! The curse on Gateworld shall continue for as long as we see fit, or as long we choose to stay away from it! The denizens of Gateworld shall suffer for their crimes of passion, and boil in the heat of cyberslowness! It is the price they must pay for what they have done to us! MUAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!


    Seedy part of Vancouver? Where’s that? The few yards of street near our only hobo on Hastings?

  23. Hi Joe,

    First post here, after reading for a few weeks. Massive fan of the Stargate franchise!

    I am guessing this is the way to get into the “mail bag”.

    I am 19, and planning on studying screen production next year at uni. I live in Australia, where there is now no sci-fi productions. How would someone go about trying to get a job with the show’s crew if you live internationally? A dream to work on any Stargate production!

    Come to Australia to film! 😀


  24. This is for Brad Wright: When the M.A.L.P.S go to a planet befor the SG teams are the M.A.L.P.S remote control or is there a Dwarf driving it.

  25. Mornin’, Joe..

    And thanks to Glen for popping by. I haven’t read the book and unless someone’s into doing bedtime stories for me.. I doubt I will. But it sounds interesting and he seems like a really nice guy. Kudos 😉

    Soo.. i’m still feeling crappy this morning and am due to go throw myself at the mercy of a classroom of kids, in a little over an hour. I still don’t get the whole karma thing.. But, boy.. I *must’ve* been bad somewhere down the line. ‘Course, feeling crappy also falls in line with being snarky and today i’ve dedicated my own blog entry to the bumbling arsewipes at Skiffy. After playing, re-playing and boring poor old Jenks to tears with the opening titles for season 5 of Atlantis, i’ve come to the conclusion that I simply *can’t* fall asleep, nor lose interest in the 01:01 minutes it takes to watch them.

    And on that note, i’d like to invite them into taking a very long walk off something exceptionally short and steep.. Or to sit down on something equally sharp and pointy.

    Nuff said.

  26. Salut Joseph!!
    Sa va???
    Je suis impatiente de savoir ce qu’il vous est arriver hier aprés midi=)
    Et bien moi pas grande chose, mise appart les cours, les devoirs. A si! je suis partenaire de stargate convention =) je suis trés contente!
    Et que je suis toujour aussi fan de stargate et de vous^^!! De plus je recommence a marquer stargate au lien de stage -_-‘, ce n’est pas ma faute se sont mes doigts qui font sa tout seul =)

    Bon passer une bonne journée =) Bisou Bisou!

  27. I blame the current economic crisis and stock market plunge on the cancellation of Stargate: Atlantis!!

    Whew. Felt good getting that out of my system. 😛

    @ Joe – And I blame you for my problems with sleep last night. First, I fell asleep before 8:30 pm – I don’t do that unless I’m taking a power nap, or sick. I woke up when hubby got home from work, but only to grunt out a loving and heartfelt ‘Clean the litter pans, honey.’

    Fell back to sleep, woke up again about 1:00 am, and watched the rest of NCIS, then some CNN commentary on the debates (*yawn!* Only the colorful James Carville kept it interesting…ya know, he’d make a great supervillain). The commentary was interrupted by a news alert that the Asian markets were as much as 10% off at closing, which – I suppose – is bad. I would not know – most of my money is invested in cats, comic books and well-arranged clutter.

    Went back to sleep, where I dreamt about the bathroom at Walmart. I’ve never even been in the bathroom at Walmart. But I dreamt about it…though it was really more of a nightmare. The bathroom (as public restrooms usually are) was very dirty. I dropped something on the floor near the sink (can’t remember what it was) and when I bent down to pick it up, my lip touched the dirty sink/counter. I spent the rest of my dream trying to scrub off the germs. *shudder* I am SO ‘Monk’ when it comes to using public restrooms. I have these ‘public bathroom nightmares’ about 2 or 3 times a year. It usually involves dirty toilets, and stall partitions that are too short or too high, or missing all together. Often there is one extremely clean toilet that sits in the middle of the room – without wall or partition – exposed for all to see. My dilemma then is whether or not to use the clean toilet while everyone watches, or use the dirty toilet where no one can see me.

    YES. I have issues!!! BUT…only in using public bathrooms, not in cleaning them. As long as I have a bigass bottle of disinfectant, and rubber gloves, I’m good! 😀

    So…anyway…slept until 6 am, got hubby off to work (day shift today!), and now it’s 10, and I’m eating leftover sausage and black olive pizza for breakfast. Ah, there’s nothing like ‘clean the fridge’ day. 😛

    RE: Tarragon Chicken – My favorite! I make it a lot, with the following (to taste, of course): Dijon mustard, white wine, tarragon, garlic, lemon juice, chicken broth (just to stretch the sauce if need be), and chicken, of course. It is yum!

    RE: Car Search – CanNOT wait for this story!!

    RE: Toddifer Shippers – Someone here a couple months ago mentioned a Todd/Jennifer fic they were working on…I forget who. Wolfenm, maybe? ANYWAY…I was just wondering what they thought after seeing First Contact? I’m not a shipper fan (unless it’s pure comedy), but I am curious if that episode stirred up anything. Personally, I still think Todd belongs with John…but more in a Planes, Trains, and Automobiles kinda way…waking up in a motel together…

    Todd: “Why are you holding my hand, John Sheppard?”
    John: “So you don’t sleep-feed on me.” [frowns] “Where’s your other hand?”
    Todd: “Between two pillows…”
    John: “Those aren’t pillows!”

    Yeah. That’s the pizza talking… 😛


  28. Hi Joe, I noticed you wrote “New Order” in SG-1 S8; could you please answer me why did Fifth chose to impersonate Pete instead of Jack in the fantasy?

  29. Glen Cook sounds like an interesting person to talk to, big thanks to him that he took the time to guest blog!

    if you had lost your car at night I would have suspected you of being drunk and that would already have been funny but you said afternoon so I’m really looking forward to the story about your car ^^
    I only once “lost” my bike for some weeks. Someone must have thought it looked good at first glance… but they returned it to the police shortly afterwards
    thankfully the police believed the broken brakes and lights were caused by the thiefs 😉

  30. I was beginning to wonder what had happened to Glen Cook but didn’t want to ask in case I remembered incorrectly and he really wasn’t going to be answering questions. I would have looked silly what with having asked questions. I’m glad he overcame the computer troubles.

    You lost your car? Are you having brain fog moments because of the lack of sleep or was the car stolen? Towed? Poor Joe. What of the non SG-related meeting? Go well?

  31. C’mon, how seedy could a street in Vancouver possibly be? Next you’ll be telling me there’s actual crime in Canada. Pfft!

  32. das said …

    RE: Toddifer Shippers – Someone here a couple months ago mentioned a Todd/Jennifer fic they were working on…I forget who. Wolfenm, maybe?

    Oh, HELL no!! XD Nah, I just mentioned I was roleplaying him and had paired him up with an OC. If I *had* to choose a member of canon to pair him with, it’d be John or Rodney over Jennifer. 😉 But I’ll stick with McShep …

  33. Hey Joe,

    It just so happens that my freezer is always stocked with the tastiest vanilla ice cream. Also, I can bake up Mrs. Smith’s Pumpkin Pie. If you are in town, that is.

    And what’s this you say?! Pro writers have computer problems too!!??? AND they lose their cars in the *seedy* parts of neighborhoods! Wow! Just when you think you have figured out how the world works…

    Am I right in assuming that *seedy part of the neighborhood* in Canada means that bears roam free? Like that bear that got into the subway somewhere up there? That’s a rough neighborhood in my opinion! Down in Florida it means you have to watch your small dogs and cats because they might become gator snacks. That’s why I’m thinking it means there are bears. 😉

    @Narelle: I couldn’t agree with you more. My puppies aren’t just bursting with wonderful souls… they are members of my family. And I’m honored to know them and live with them.

    Forgive me for sticking my head in on the Nazi vs. Wraith discussion. I do have one thing to say about it. Nazis were terrible because they commited religious genocide on their own species. They did it because they COULD. Not because they had to, to live. I see a difference even if some people don’t. I’m sure that Narelle and Das agree with me. But you two will correct me if you don’t. 🙂 Which is why I respect the two of you.

    Ok. Nuff said.

    The yard work is calling to me. 🙄

    Trish 😀

  34. – A few questions for Brad Wright, concerning Universe there are a lot of reports that have been released which seem to give different impressions on what the show is going to be like, in terms of characters. A Sci-Fi press release seemed to indicate that the characters and character drama would be like BSG, while the light hearted/humour aspects you’ve said you want to keep in the show as well as the younger characters point me a bit more towards Farscape. If you had to pick a show, any show that the direction and development concerning the cast could compare to what would it be?

    – Will the show have a large number of recurring characters compared to SG-1/Atlantis given the idea that these people are isolated from Earth, and essentially have to rely on each other?

    – Will the fact that Sci-Fi are showing the Atlantis movie, and the SG-1 movie, does that mean there will be less of a wait for the films to be shown given that the economics of preparing a DVD including extras and distribution won’t be there? And if so do you have any idea when they could potentially be shown?

    I’m personally looking forward to Universe though, I think a lot of people are hesitant about it because they’ve seen SG-1, they’ve seen Atlantis and they’re expecting more of that. When the information about it was released it did not conform to those expectations and people were hesitant. I’m not expecting another SG-1, and I don’t think it would be a good idea to make one. I think that’s why I’m quite looking forward to Universe. There are a couple of issues with the SG franchise, character elements tend to get put on the back seat rather then be a central aspect a lot of the time, the idea of the Earth ships like Apollo and beaming has made things a bit too easy and convenient. I see Universe as not only the chance for a great show but as a chance to get rid of everything from the franchise which has handcuffed it. A new start almost, it has the potential to be a very good show though, and a well considered and planned out first series could really help it succeed and given the timing of the show being green lit it should hopefully come across on screen in a strong way.

    Anyway, cheers for your time. – Inpa.

  35. Hi again Mr M!

    WRT: Stargate Atlantis The Musical, I believe Mr Hewlitt, Ms Staite and Ms Tapping had a little Dinner Thetare piece going during “Trio” with such songs as “The Wraith, the wraith, are a very very very bad race”……. This I would pay good money to see!

    WRT: Vancouver and seedy section? Never saw it…. But loved the little Canadian things like… A bus that had a sign “OUT OF SERVICE” …ok that’s normal enough, but here is the Canadian bit, it then flashed “SORRY”….so Canadian! I saw this at the Bus Station in MetroTown.

    How did the non-SG pitch meeting go with you and Paul?

    Best to all


  36. Hey Joe!

    Question for Brad Wright:

    A totally out-of-the-blue question, has there been thoughts of including SG-1 characters in the pilot for Continuum? Such as how Richard Dean Anderson and Michael Shanks were in Atlantis’ pilot?

    Thanks as always!

    – Enzo Aquarius

  37. Shirt’n’Tie said

    A bus that had a sign “OUT OF SERVICE” …ok that’s normal enough, but here is the Canadian bit, it then flashed “SORRY”

    I love it! Had me struggling to not inhale coffee into my lungs. And the “Sorry” would have been said ala Carter in “McKay and Mrs Miller”.

    Trish – So nicely said. I’ve had Hubby away for almost a week and my dogs are completely different.

    They know they aren’t allowed on the bed or the couch. Even in a king size not all four of us fit!

    I went to bed last night alone, I woke up at about 2am to my Kelpie tucked in with his head on my pillow and snoring, then I woke up at 4am to find the Kelpie gone and the Ridgeback x Bullmastiff having taken his place. And notably my legs lacked feeling due to the little-big guy needing to be as close as possible to you at all times.

    They have arguments with each other verbally. Not barking, but making mumbling sounds. Those arguments usually end in one of them coming to get me and show me what they are arguing over. Once I sort it out they happily settle down again.

    That is very sentient behaviour.

    Lt.Col.Errandboy **waves back**

  38. Hello Joe,

    Can you give tell us what the ratings were for First Contact? I can’t seem to find them anywhere!


  39. Trish, I know what ya mean about the alligators, here in S. Fla. When we first moved to Port Saint Lucie ( about an hour north of West Palm Beach) in 1990 we couldn’t let our kids out in the back- due to the roaming BOBCATS and the occasional PANTHER!! None here now! Where in Florida are you? JOE, when’s Mr. Wright comming to blog and I can’t believe you posted all these comments to him -including mine, he must know what he is in for. STILL everytime I see an atlantis commercial, I curse at the tv , still thinking of the end of SGA. tata for now. Sheryl

  40. When I was in Vancouver earlier this year I was surprised the amount of crime in the city from just having read the newspaper. Within the five days I was there, there were two instances of the military and police beating people, child abuse at a trailer park and animal abuse. When I left the restaurant ‘Fuel’ the manager asked me to wait inside for a cab, not on the street. Won’t stop me from returning though. All cities have crime and ‘seedy’ areas. It’s part of life. I just look for the good things cities offer and accept the not so good.

  41. I hope I am not too late to submit a question for Mr. Wright. This is about Stargate Universe.

    I am sure all due research was done to assure that the projected time slot for SGU has sufficient numbers of the targeted audience watching television at the right day and time. I am also sure that all due research was done indicating that the non-targeted audience is watching television in insufficient numbers at the same day and time.

    I am long past the days of finding young, angsty, buff things appealing in any way, shape or form. I fear that if there isn’t enough “adult” content, the second episode will be the last I watch. I am a long time fan of the franchise and would seriously dislike for it to end on that note as far as series watching is concerned. Be sure I would watch the SG-1 and Atlantis movies, buy the DVDs and download from iTunes. But, that would be it. There are far too much young, angsty, buff things on television as it is. Being a member of the wrong demographic currently chomps in a very large way.

    Sorry for the long preamble. My question is, given the admittedly brief and preliminary profiles given for the major characters, will there be enough other characters and storylines for the non-targeted demographics to attract and keep our attention?

    Thank you very much for so many great years of Stargate!

  42. Lassie is a boy *sigh* another myth gone west like Santa and St Valentine.

    Joe, I have hokey pokey ice cream in the freezer if you would care to try that. “World famous in New Zealand for ages” that stuff. Great with deep dish apple pie – fresh made not frozen too.

    Have a great day

  43. @Sherwood Forest Maiden: ooh, I haven’t thought about hokey pokey ice cream in a long time. Loved it, got it every chance I could when I vacationed in New Zealand (best trip I’ve ever had). That’s were I also discovered pavlova! And that I love lamb. All pretty hard to come by in the US (lamb dishes are usually pricey here for some reason).

  44. Hi Joe,

    How many Athosians are left? Will any more be “rescued” and cured this season?

  45. @Narelle –

    Maybe it’s just my fiance’s family then…lol. They gave me a very strange look when I asked for vanilla ice cream with the apple crumble. They only had neapolitan ice cream, so I had to scoop the vanilla out from the chocolate and strawberry. hehe.


    Awesome that you’re studying film. I majored in video production with a minor in film in the USA. I may be able to answer your question in regards to working on a Canadian filmed show. Most shows filmed in Canada do not hire very many foreigners for one main reason, relocation aside. The Canadian government will give x amount of money to Canadian filmed and run shows. Stargate may or may not be a part of this, I do not know for sure. The only way to receive this extra government funding is have a certain majority of the crew be Canadian. I think it’s 85 to 90 percent, but I may be wrong on the exact number. It’s a high percentage nonetheless. This is one of the reasons why shows in Canada advertise for Canadians only. I really think it’s a great way to help support the country’s own film industry.

    At any rate, it makes it extremely unlikely that they will hire foreigners for the crew whether they are Americans, Australians, etc. It’s not completely improbable, just not very likely. So, if you get one of those much needed skills that few people have in the film industry, then you’ll definitely have your foot in the door to about any production you want to do. 😉

  46. Hey Das, ” Michael” is on criminal minds on CBS network in the U.S. The name of the epi is Minimal Loss- injoy your other wraith. sheryl

  47. Hey Joe, I have a question for Brad.

    Whose job was it to make sure that the references to ancient Egyptian mythology and civilization portrayed on SG1 were accurate?

  48. Sorry I missed the discussion with Mr. Cook I could tell he was a military man by how wrote the novel: the interactions between the characters, sort of like a “band of brothers” scenario, as well as the banter and rather violent reaction to outsiders. However, like so much of my time and my meals, my ingestion of novels has to be quick, gulped and ruminated over–after I’ve eaten, sometimes months after I’ve eaten. I read The Black Company about two years ago.

    One writer I love, and who I would love to see you do a segment on (though she’s dead) is Angela Carter–she hasn’t been dead for that long though. Among other things she wrote the novel Oscar and Lucinda. A film by the same name starring Cate Blanchet and Ralph Fiennes was adapted in 1997.

    One of my favourite pieces of her writing is a collection of short fiction called The Bloody Chamber. In it she takes traditional fairy tales and puts a rather macabre twist on them. For instance, Snow White is THE SNOW CHILD, who is a victim of a pedophilic king and an envious mother. IN THE COMPANY OF WOLVES is an older translation of Red Riding Hood, where the grandmother is actually a werewolf and falls victim to her deft martial arts fighting granddaughter. Finally, my favourite is THE LADY OF THE HOUSE OF LOVE. It is a spin on vampire folklore. The story is of a sixteenish year old girl who loathes her “condition”.

    This is an excerpt:

    Wearing an antique bridal gown, the beautiful queen of the vampires sits all alone in her dark, high house under the eyes of the portraits of her demented and atrocious ancestors, each one of whom, through her, projects a baleful posthumous existence; she counts out the Tarot cards, ceaselessly construing a constellation of possibilities as if the random fall of the cards on the red plush tablecloth before her could precipitate her from her chill, shuttered room into a country of perpetual summer and obliterate the perennial sadness of a girl who is both death and the maiden.

    Her voice is filled with distant sonorities, like reverberations in a cave: now you are at the place of annihilation, now you are at the place of annihilation. And she is herself a cave full of echoes…

    She rises when the sun sets and goes immediately to her table where she plays her game of patience until she grows hungry, until she becomes ravenous. She is so beautiful she is unnatural; her beauty is an abnormality, a deformity, for none of her features exhibit any of those touching imperfections that reconcile us to the imperfection of the human condition. Her beauty is a symptom of her disorder, of her soullessness.


  49. @Sparrow_hawk — there was an awesome SNL sketch of the Palin/Biden debate. I had to have a lay down afterward. Tiny Fey did such a wonderful parody of Palin–when she was asked about Russia and the US foreign policy Fey/Palin says “Oh I don’t know ’bout whosie whatzat all I’m gosh sure about is what its like to be a MAVERICK yep, me and John are real Mavericks and…
    What’s your stance on the melting of the polar ice caps?
    “Well, I’ll tell ya we have a strong policy–a STRONG POLICY and besides its another sign of the end of days…and we’re all MAVERICKs here…”

    If you get a chance take a peek see.


  50. Hey guys, wow I wish I would have stumbled across this site a few weeks ago. Did anyone ask Glen Cook about the final 2 books in the Black Company series? He said they’d be out in a few years.. a few years ago. A Pitiless Rain and Port of Shadows should be out sometime soon I’d guess. But i’d love to hear it from the writer himself.

  51. Hello, Mr. Cook. I’ll start by saying that I am enthralled by your Black Company series. I would like to know about something that has really been bugging me. At the end of the second book when Raven “dies” does he really die? Or is he just faking it again? And also, who are your favorite characters? That would be all. Thanx for your time!^_^

  52. Awesome job getting Cook here Mallozzi. Been reading his books for over a decade now and writing for about half that, and his answers give a great amount of insight into the BC world.

  53. Glenn,

    I’ve been going thru your Garrett, PI works.

    I love the pictoral sketches, the dialog, the intense activity of the characters.

    The books keep wanting to come back.

    I only have one complaint. It is a too late thing, but very important to many of us around the world.

    A Marine is only an ex-Marine when he becomes dead.

    Otherwise he/she is a Marine or former Marine.

    Once you earn the title and the C.O. and DI declare you to be a Marine, you have that for life, no matter what you do with the rest of it.

    Thanks for the fantasy worlds that you have built.

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