VERONICA BELMONT: Hey, everyone.
Veronica Belmont here from Sword and Laser.
Welcome to my very messy lady lair.
Not quite as nice as the pub.
I wanted to let you know that we have a lot more questions
that we wanted to ask author Scott Sigler from last week
that didn't make it into the show.
So here they are for your enjoyment.
And also, make sure to check out the brand new episode of
TableTop coming this Friday.
And the week after, we've got the new Sword and Laser.
See you then.
Well, since we already had Scott captive in
our castle in space--
TOM MERRITT: You're not going anywhere.
VERONICA BELMONT: You're trapped here forever, now.
We thought we'd throw a few more questions his way.
This one comes from Ross.
He says, I've been a big fan of yours for years.
And he wants to know if there's going to be a chance
for a sequel of Nocturnal.
SCOTT SIGLER: Yeah, totally.
People who have listened to the podcast, for example, will
realize that the ending for the podcast, I was really
proud of it.
It was this awesome set piece.
But it had to change due to the changes in the structure
and of the plot.
So I've kind of got the ending for the sequel
already squared away.
So we're definitely going to bring that out.
And the original podcast was 230,000, 240,000 word book, so
about 1,000 page hardcover novel.
So really, a lot of what I cut out and restructured is ready
to go in the sequel.
So maybe a year or two or three, but we're definitely
going to see a sequel to it.
I've got it set up as a trilogy.
And then if that's successful, also a prequel going back to
the late 1800s in San Francisco.
TOM MERRITT: Oh, wow.
SCOTT SIGLER: When all of this began.
So it'll be pretty sweet.
TOM MERRITT: So not Gold Rush era, exactly.
SCOTT SIGLER: A little bit after the Gold Rush era, but
the real advent of the government of San Francisco
really starting to crack down on the lawlessness and the
TOM MERRITT: Do some fun Barbary Coast stuff.
SCOTT SIGLER: Yup.
VERONICA BELMONT: I love how much everything is San
I know we're kind of biased, because we live here.
But that's awesome that you're bringing a little bit of that
into your work, or a lot of that, actually.
SCOTT SIGLER: There's quite a bit of San Francisco history
in Nocturnal, particularly the filling in of the Bay and all
the ships that were abandoned in the Gold Rush.
And I won't give it away, but there are some things that I
think are really cool about the book that are very unique,
San Francisco only.
And anybody who knows the area is going to like it.
But it does create kind of a large, epic, urban fantasy,
sprawling element to the whole thing.
TOM MERRITT: Yeah, because a lot of people don't realize,
whenever they're building a new building in San Francisco,
they always find a ship, it seems like.
VERONICA BELMONT: Really?
TOM MERRITT: They always dig up--
VERONICA BELMONT: I didn't know that.
TOM MERRITT: They dig up a boat.
Probably not a ship, a boat.
SCOTT SIGLER: Well frequently, if they put in a new
foundation in San Francisco, they'll hit a vessel.
And they have to stop and let people come in and
take a look at it.
Mexico City's another one.
They have a huge problem with that.
TOM MERRITT: Tamahome writes, "Your writing
seems simple and clear.
What kind of style are you trying to achieve?" And in
fact, Timchrista asked a similar question
about writing style.
VERONICA BELMONT: I think they just called you simple.
TOM MERRITT: Well, that's in a Vonnegut sort of way.
That kind of simple.
How do you see yourself as a writer?
Do you have a style that you're aiming at?
How would you describe that?
SCOTT SIGLER: That's the first time Vonnegut and Sigler have
ever been used together.
I'm really trying to go for a natural, conversational tone.
Early on, this is what podcasting was extremely
Because when I started out, like a lot of young writers, I
was quite full of myself and like, I'm going to do all
these great things and would write way too much for any
And then when I started reading everything out loud, I
was like, this is boring, because I'm boring myself with
my own words.
And that helped.
TOM MERRITT: The gleam of the tea cup, that kind of stuff?
SCOTT SIGLER: That kind.
And big words and words people had to look up, and showing
off my vocabulary, et cetera.
And after podcasting for a year or two, I was like, this
doesn't help anything.
All this does is get in the way of the
story you're telling.
So everything I'm writing is trying to be conversational,
our modern culture.
I write the way people talk.
And I think that helps naturalize it.
And people tend to go through the books really, really fast
because of that.
TOM MERRITT: And that's good advice, I think.
VERONICA BELMONT: Yeah, I know.
I love the bringing in the podcasting aspect to it.
Because I don't think enough authors do that.
And it's such an interesting and it's such a modern way to
get your work out there and to test your limits and to also
try out your own writing on yourself and on other people
before you actually go to the hardcover format.
SCOTT SIGLER: Even if somebody's writing and they're
never going to podcast anything, never going to
release the audio, they hate the sound of their voice, the
exercise of actually reading half or a whole novel into a
recorder and then listening to it back, will make drastic
improvements on your writing style, because you will hear a
lot of things in there.
I just don't need that.
I don't need that.
And you're able to cut those things out.
So it's really cool.
VERONICA BELMONT: Well, it makes me wonder, too, how many
authors get to the audio book phase of their writing, where
they're actually listening to someone read their book as an
audio book, and say, oh, that sounds terrible, or that
didn't make any sense.
It has to get that far before they have a chance
to listen to it.
Whereas, you're doing it before you even publish.
SCOTT SIGLER: I drove my editors crazy with Ancestor,
which was the book before this, because I got to record
the audio book.
So I had the galleys for the book--
VERONICA BELMONT: And we happen to have it right here.
TOM MERRITT: Oh, you mean this one?
SCOTT SIGLER: This one right here.
But I was reading from the page galley, so as it's going
to look in the book to do the audio book.
And I kept finding stuff when I'd read out loud.
You don't realize that you use the word key twice in close
proximity at the end of one sentence, and
it just sounds weird.
So I was fixing everything, and every day faxing the pages
back to the publisher like, no, you got to fix this before
it goes to print.
TOM MERRITT: They're like, stop reading your book aloud.
We can't take it.
SCOTT SIGLER: They weren't happy about that.
TOM MERRITT: Should we go to TassyDave who's a big fan
since EarthCore days, says, "When can we look forward to
SCOTT SIGLER: Mt Fitzroy is the sequel to EarthCore.
EarthCore was the first book I podcast back in 2005.
And we have not been able to put that back out in print.
But now, to make it fit into the continuity of the
Siglerverse, I have to rewrite it so that it takes place
after Nocturnal and after Pandemic.
So I have to finish EarthCore.
And then after that, then I can write the
sequel to it, Mt Fitzroy.
So I can't write Mt Fitzroy until I finish EarthCore.
But this is the kryptonite of my writing career, because I
was the guy who was, yeah, George RR Martin, took five
years to write a years to write a book.
Get off your dead ass and write something.
And now I'm going on eight years of
promising people this sequel.
So now I'm that guy.
TOM MERRITT: He also wants to know, I gather this is a
common question for you, when the FDO will become the DO?
SCOTT SIGLER: When the Future Dark Overlord becomes the
actual Dark Overlord, that's not until I get a number one
When that happens, then I will be the Dark Overlord.
TOM MERRITT: Make that happen, people.
VERONICA BELMONT: And finally, Cameron wants know, "Scott,
how come none of the creatures in any of your novels shoot
freaking laser beams out of their eyes?"
That would be so cool.
SCOTT SIGLER: I'm going to have to work on the physics of
how somebody could generate some kind of beam weapon.
VERONICA BELMONT: The hard science with that, the hard
sci-fi with that, is not quite as simple to put together.
SCOTT SIGLER: I know there's some leeway.
I know there's some leeway.
VERONICA BELMONT: Got to figure it out.
TOM MERRITT: There has to be something that could be a
bionic eye or something.
Some kind of artificial thing.
SCOTT SIGLER: Oh, if I started to go into cyborg or machinery
or nanotech, there's definitely ways to do it.
But so far, everything's been very much biological.
So I got to get into those areas and start to go.
Yeah, I'll work on it.
I'll work on it.
TOM MERRITT: Some kind of alien fish species,
bioluminescence, really focused.
VERONICA BELMONT: Awesome.
And one final question from us.
We have a dragon, as you've seen.
Any name suggestions?
Any guess to whether he's a he, or she's a she?
TOM MERRITT: We're pretty sure the dragon has a name.
A dragon always has a name, but we just don't
know what it is.
SCOTT SIGLER: I think it's probably a he and a she.
I think the she is the biological side and the
machine is the male side.
I think got to go with Victor Victoria.
It's clearly the name.
TOM MERRITT: Victor Victoria.
SCOTT SIGLER: Clearly the name of that dragon.
TOM MERRITT: We'll put it to the dragon and see.
VERONICA BELMONT: Awesome.
Well, thanks again.
And if you guys want to catch the rest of our full interview
with Scott Sigler, check out episode number one of the
Sword and Laser Show.