Katharine Eliska Kimbriel

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Born
in Sun-Return, Michigan Territory, The United States
Website

Twitter

Genre

Influences
Everything. Seriously.

Member Since
June 2008

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In the beginning Katharine Eliska Kimbriel was nominated for the John W. Campbell Award for Best New SF/Fantasy Writer. Katharine’s work has long straddled the line: “too literary to be commercial, too commercial to be literary” – she has a list of itinerant occupations to prove it.

Published novels include the historical dark fantasies NIGHT CALLS, KINDRED RITES, and SPIRAL PATH. On the science fiction side you will find FIRE SANCTUARY, FIRES OF NUALA, and HIDDEN FIRES, stand-alone tales that take place on the same planet.

Katharine is managed by Burmese cats and a handful of gargoyles. Her occasional hobbies have included ballroom dancing, brewing beer, antique roses, and macrobiotic and paleolithic cooking.

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Popular Answered Questions

Katharine Eliska Kimbriel Mike, I haven't set a limit to what I will write about Alfreda. I hope to write several more books, launching her into adulthood. The War of 1812 appr…moreMike, I haven't set a limit to what I will write about Alfreda. I hope to write several more books, launching her into adulthood. The War of 1812 approaches swiftly, and the 1800s were a fascinating time in America. What limits how fast a book happens will be a job search, and how well the books sell. I told my subconscious to get to work on the next Allie book, and I am currently doing a contemporary/urban fantasy I've been researching for years.

I want to write more Allie! But I got really ill for a while, and now I have to get back into the job market and not get roped into doing 2.5 jobs masquerading as one! ;^) That would derail all writing for a time.

So--tell people about the books, and keep your fingers crossed for me!(less)
Katharine Eliska Kimbriel I've started a contemporary fantasy/urban fantasy that is set in Austin, TX. It has nine-souled enchanters, werewolves, vampires, sentient cats, drago…moreI've started a contemporary fantasy/urban fantasy that is set in Austin, TX. It has nine-souled enchanters, werewolves, vampires, sentient cats, dragons, and the Fates, just for starters. And begins the tale with murder, an old curse, and the adage that you are what you eat.

Right now I am reading about traditional Japanese house construction. Because Quinn tells me it's important. And when one of the protagonists wants something, I try to oblige. ;^)(less)
Average rating: 4.2 · 1,869 ratings · 217 reviews · 14 distinct worksSimilar authors
Night Calls (Night Calls #1)

4.27 avg rating — 403 ratings — published 1996 — 5 editions
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Kindred Rites (Night Calls #2)

4.49 avg rating — 285 ratings — published 1997 — 4 editions
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Fires of Nuala

4.01 avg rating — 193 ratings — published 1988 — 5 editions
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Spiral Path (Night Calls #3)

4.42 avg rating — 204 ratings — published 2014 — 3 editions
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Fire Sanctuary

4.25 avg rating — 92 ratings — published 1986 — 4 editions
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Hidden Fires

4.18 avg rating — 96 ratings — published 1991 — 4 editions
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Wings of Morning (Night Cal...

4.13 avg rating — 48 ratings — published 2005 — 3 editions
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Against the Wind (Elfquest:...

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4.18 avg rating — 251 ratings — published 1990 — 2 editions
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Lord of the Fantastic: Stor...

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3.84 avg rating — 148 ratings — published 1998 — 2 editions
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Nevertheless, She Persisted

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really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 42 ratings — published 2017 — 3 editions
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More books by Katharine Eliska Kimbriel…

Still Alive

Found at Facebook, occasionally Twitter, and mostly by Friended accounts at Dreamwidth.

https://alfreda89.dreamwidth.org/

Still writing, still alive, still healing, perhaps surprisingly. I didn't think after fifty+ years ill there was any energy to fix anything else. Surprise!

"I wanted to write science fiction, not live it." -- Katharine Eliska Kimbriel Read more of this blog post »
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Published on February 14, 2020 11:38
Night Calls Kindred Rites Spiral Path
(3 books)
by
4.36 avg rating — 940 ratings

Fires of Nuala Hidden Fires Fire Sanctuary
(3 books)
by
4.11 avg rating — 381 ratings

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Fires of Nuala (Science Fiction & Fantasy)
1 chapters   —   updated Nov 06, 2010 02:11PM
Description: Quotes from Fires of Nuala

Katharine’s Recent Updates

Katharine Kimbriel wants to read
Murder on Black Swan Lane by Andrea Penrose
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The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery
"Warning: spoilery talk ahead for this book that is nearly a century old.

I've heard this book disparaged as second-rate Montgomery, even as outright trash. And I can see the problematical aspects--the "bucket list" plot was already pretty worn out by " Read more of this review »
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Business as Usual by Jane  Oliver
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Virgil Wander by Leif Enger
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The Hum and the Shiver by Alex Bledsoe
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The Hum and the Shiver by Alex Bledsoe
"Haiku review:

Southern fantasy.
Worthy heir of Wellman, and
Henderson's People."
Katharine Kimbriel entered a giveaway
The Vanished Queen by Lisbeth Campbell
The Vanished Queen
by Lisbeth Campbell (Goodreads Author)
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Foul Is Fair by Hannah Capin
"This is a situation where I should have judged the book by its cover, rather than the marketing buzz about Macbeth. It's not the fault of the author that I went in expecting something heady and brilliant like Dorothy Dunnett's King Hereafter, but got" Read more of this review »
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Logging Off by Nick Spalding
Logging Off
by Nick Spalding (Goodreads Author)
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Network Effect by Martha Wells
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More of Katharine's books…
“When will we learn we are Human first, and that all other names are merely changes of clothing?”
Katharine Eliska Kimbriel

Topics Mentioning This Author

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“Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.”
Rainer Maria Rilke

“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
Oscar Wilde

“I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be.”
douglas adams, The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul

“In the matter of prejudice...we are all the same. Goddess and demon, human and monster: none of us understand difference, but at least some of us make the effort to try.”
Liz Williams, Snake Agent

“Fantasy is hardly an escape from reality. It's a way of understanding it.”
Lloyd Alexander

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Comments (showing 1-13)    post a comment »
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message 13: by Estara (last edited Oct 13, 2010 03:57PM)

Estara Katharine wrote: "You hit the button twice, I think (or the system thought you did) because I got this post twice! So, one at the top, one already at the bottom!

Well now I can't see it at the bottom anymore, only where it's supposed to be... strange.

If Sherwood has shared her results yet, I haven't s..."

I don't remember her having shared the results, she just asked her regular readers on LJ for their thoughts on BVC's usability and attractiveness (because of the ongoing discussion among you BVC lot). I don't think she promised she'd share the results on her LJ, so maybe she simply passed them along, too.


Katharine Kimbriel You hit the button twice, I think (or the system thought you did) because I got this post twice! So, one at the top, one already at the bottom!

If Sherwood has shared her results yet, I haven't seen the message go by -- I've been so swamped I haven't been at LJ except to post or answer questions. I'll watch for them!


message 11: by Estara (last edited Oct 13, 2010 01:27PM)

Estara Katharine wrote: "But I'll pass along your comments!"

Sherwood Smith might have done so already, she recently asked her LJ readers for similar feedback on the BVC site ^^

ETA: I have no idea why this comment shows up at the bottom when I've clicked the reply button. Hmm.


Katharine Kimbriel Actually, the blog IS in WordPress -- it's just not the most up to date version, since we tend to wait a while until everything in a version that will break is done breaking. But I'll pass along your comments!

Because a lot of BVC interaction with readers happens on the blog and also because there are so many updates (quite different from single author blogs) I think the blog link needs to be majorly highlighted on the original plattform page, but you still could just transfer the blog itself to Wordpress


message 9: by Estara (last edited Oct 13, 2010 01:24PM)

Estara Katharine wrote: "I am not part of the "torture as entertainment" craze. Life is hard enough for everyone right now without that. People want entertainment, something with characters that are at least interesting, and that they learn something about and from -- but are not hit over the head with it."

I agree that I wasn't the target audience for that book of E. Wein's but she has a gift for characters who go through great emotional upheaval during their journey through the plot and sometimes that isn't all occasioned by inside insecurities - Rachel Manija Brown compares her books to Megan Whalen Turner and I've read the Thief of Attolia books and can't help but agree - I have to put them down sometimes to recover, but they are still - in the right mood - something to cherish (the last Inda book was similar for me).

But being German and having to read very clever (mostly psychological) Gestapo torture, mixed with some abrupt physical bits - to highlight the spirit of the girl who is the prisoner of war and how she manages to turn it into a spiritual victory and how her friend outside the headquarters plays into it and her (and the Resistance) attempt to save the imprisoned girl - and the whole background of their friendship during the war...

Well, the book puts you through the wringer but you come out with a belief in humans (there even is a sympathetic German in there) and their strength in the face of adversity.

It's just not something I read for escape ^^.

BVC is now debating whether to go to Joomla 2.0, which should fix some problems on the site, or switch to WordPress. We want to have a comments section, where fans can talk about things. And a better shopping cart. (We had to go with cheap yet able to handle TONS of pages. Joomla was pretty much it when we started.)

Because a lot of BVC interaction with readers happens on the blog and also because there are so many updates (quite different from single author blogs) I think the blog link needs to be majorly highlighted on the original plattform page, but you still could just transfer the blog itself to Wordpress (which has themes these days that support threading and encourage discussions that way - also plugins that allow automatic notification if a comment gets answered - much like LJ).
In case the plattform and shop software just doesn't play nice with the blog part.

The downside of WordPress popularity is that script kiddies like exploiting loopholes. It might be easier to let the blog be hosted on wordpress.com (where they are vigilant) but then you'd have to pay extra for having your own corporate identity theme and some of the plugin features cost extra, too, so hosting it on your own server is cheaper (but means more vigilance and work).

Oh well, I'm sure the ladies in the know have already explored these various thoughts.

If some people at BVC have the energy to try building another subcommunity here, why not. But I'd think making the BVC plattform and connected sites (the blog, the smashwords shop) become a strong community might tie people to the site and the news (and purchase opportunities) more...


Katharine Kimbriel I am not part of the "torture as entertainment" craze. Life is hard enough for everyone right now without that. People want entertainment, something with characters that are at least interesting, and that they learn something about and from -- but are not hit over the head with it.

BVC is now debating whether to go to Joomla 2.0, which should fix some problems on the site, or switch to WordPress. We want to have a comments section, where fans can talk about things. And a better shopping cart. (We had to go with cheap yet able to handle TONS of pages. Joomla was pretty much it when we started.)

In the meantime, maybe one of us needs to think about monitoring a BVC group at Goodreads or something...like we're not already going nuts over here!

I think I can handle that ^^ (it also helps if the book doesn't feature the Gestapo torturing anyone).


Estara Katharine wrote: "Okay, I will enjoy your reviews, but not ask you to beta! If I have a German question, I'll just send sentences or ask your opinion on word choices! ;^)

I think I can handle that ^^ (it also helps if the book doesn't feature the Gestapo torturing anyone).

Sherwood does do a lovely book review, do..."

Indeed, ditto to both of these observations. Which is why she attracts a fascinating diversity of commenters which makes the discussion ever more lively on her LJ - threading really helps, I think that's a big disadvantage of the BVC blog.


Katharine Kimbriel Okay, I will enjoy your reviews, but not ask you to beta! If I have a German question, I'll just send sentences or ask your opinion on word choices! ;^)

Sherwood does do a lovely book review, doesn't she? She has such a gift for starting up a conversation online. And I love her books.


Estara Katharine wrote: "No, you are discerning -- .........
This makes you a great reviewer for plot and characters.
"


Sometimes I am. Sometimes I'm just inarticulate or totally partial (as Sherwood Smith can attest). I admire the Dear Author or the Booksmugglers reviews in that way, or your anime reviews and Sherwood Smith's book reviews.

But there are some reviews - the one about Fires of Nuala, for example - where what I meant to say and what I write actually coincide, true ^^.

I actually was a sort-of beta reader for the newest book by Elizabeth Wein, and she did find some of my commentary useful, but my dreaded procrastination raised its ugly head (the book concerns the travails of two British girls in occupied France under the tender mercies of the Gestapo - but it's gripping and uplifting and heartbreaking and coming out next year in the UK), so I avoided looking at it for months - I have no idea if she was even able to put some of the German corrections into the manuscript on time. I hope so.

As in, now I know I should only do this if the author has at least half a year to spare before time is critical. My egocentricity overcame my desire to be helpful.

Katharine wrote: "I know what you mean about having a purpose for blogging -- people who want a conversation are on Facebook. I want a stop/start conversation -- like email but with more people. So I post about my work, and things I find that are interesting."

That's how my blogging started out, too. And even though I now mostly comment, this is part of my daily emotional life. I don't have local friends who share these particular interests with me (and they are my main hobbies), so the internet is a boon in this way.


Katharine Kimbriel No, you are discerning -- you notice the details that give a book life, and the touches of character that make you remember people as people and not walk-ons. You notice thematic echoes, and consistency. You mention things that didn't bother you but might bother others -- and things that didn't ring true for you, but they weren't your experience, and others might feel differently.

You don't give spoilers without warning!

And then, you can explain the slight shadings of why this book over another -- or why this character group pleased you more than this group over here. I think of discerning as also including quality, and if you're lucky, enthusiasm. Good judgment and insight are there, too. This makes you a great reviewer for plot and characters.

You'd probably make a good beta reader, actually. So of course I am interested in what books you've found that you think are worth reading!

I know what you mean about having a purpose for blogging -- people who want a conversation are on Facebook. I want a stop/start conversation -- like email but with more people. So I post about my work, and things I find that are interesting. But I am not Cory Doctorow -- I want to change the world with my stories, not my blog!


I'm not sure I'm very 'discerning' as a reader, but I will squee when I really enjoy a book (and try to give reasons for the squee) or explain in detail why I didn't like a book if it captured my interest enough to finish it and be in arms about it.



message 3: by Estara (last edited Oct 10, 2010 08:00AM)

Estara Katharine wrote: "We know that we like a lot of the same type of anime and books. Now that I will be writing again, I need to keep up with good recs from discerning readers. Or else I may miss good books while try...

Seems to me like we're a natural link. I did follow your name from BVC to see if you had a blog, but it looked like you hadn't done anything with it in a long time. Over here, we can have an on-going convention! ;^) "


That sounds like a sensible plan to me, indeed ^^.

Yes, my impetus to keep updating sort of died. I keep meaning to start again and to turn it into a review blog mainly, but so far I feel happiest commenting - mostly on LJ (where I do have an LJ, too, but it's mostly memes and also rarely gets updated) and on the other blogs I read regularly.

I'm not sure I'm very 'discerning' as a reader, but I will squee when I really enjoy a book (and try to give reasons for the squee) or explain in detail why I didn't like a book if it captured my interest enough to finish it and be in arms about it.


Katharine Kimbriel We know that we like a lot of the same type of anime and books. Now that I will be writing again, I need to keep up with good recs from discerning readers. Or else I may miss good books while trying to write good books!

Seems to me like we're a natural link. I did follow your name from BVC to see if you had a blog, but it looked like you hadn't done anything with it in a long time. Over here, we can have an on-going convention! ;^)


Estara Thank you for friending me ^^. I feel chuffed.


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