About Mary

Kowal1Hugo-award winning author, Mary Robinette Kowal is a novelist and professional puppeteer. Her debut novel Shades of Milk and Honey (Tor 2010) was nominated for the 2010 Nebula Award for Best Novel. In 2008 she won the Campbell Award for Best New Writer, while three of her short fiction works have been nominated for the Hugo Award: “Evil Robot Monkey” in 2009 and “For Want of a Nail” in 2011, which won the Hugo for short story that year. Her stories have appeared in Strange Horizons, Asimov’s, and several Year’s Best anthologies, as well as in her collection Scenting the Dark and Other Stories from Subterranean Press.

Kowal is also an award-winning puppeteer. With over twenty years of experience, she has performed for LazyTown (CBS), the Center for Puppetry Arts, Jim Henson Pictures and founded Other Hand Productions. Her designs have garnered two UNIMA-USA Citations of Excellence, the highest award an American puppeteer can achieve.

When she isn’t writing or puppeteering, Kowal brings her speech and theater background to her work as a voice actor. As the voice behind several audio books and short stories, she has recorded fiction for authors such as Kage Baker, Cory Doctorow and John Scalzi.

Mary lives in Chicago with her husband Rob and over a dozen manual typewriters. Sometimes she even writes on them.

Recent Journal Entries

My Favorite Bit: Fran Wilde talks about CLOUDBOUND

Fran Wilde is joining us today with her novel Cloudbound. Here’s the publisher’s description: After the dust settles, the City of living bones begins to die, and more trouble brews beneath the clouds in this stirring companion to Fran Wilde’s Updraft. When Kirit Densira left her home tower for the skies, she gave up many things: […]

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My Favorite Bit: Marie Brennan talks about COLD-FORGED FLAME

Marie Brennan is joining us today with her novella Cold-Forged Flame. Here’s the publisher’s description: The sound of the horn pierces the apeiron, shattering the stillness of that realm. Its clarion call creates ripples, substance, something more. It is a summons, a command. There is will. There is need. And so, in reply, there is a […]

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A textile metaphor for cultural appropriation

For Of Noble Family, I made the dress on the cover of the novel from a sari. I’m extremely proud of my work on that, because it’s historically accurate and also that entire thing is handsewn. It also is an excellent metaphor for cultural appropriation. I took a perfectly good, and beautiful Indian garment, cut it […]

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Once Broken Faith bloopers

Happy book release day to Seanan McGuire and Once Broken Faith. I’m the narrator for the audiobooks for her October Daye series and these are some of my favorite books to narrate. Compelling characters? Oh yes. But I think that Seanan doesn’t get nearly enough credit for the quality of her prose. It’s really easy to […]

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My Favorite Bit: Michael J. Martinez talks about MJ-12: INCEPTION

Michael J. Martinez joins us today to talk about his novel MJ-12: Inception. Here’s the publisher’s description: It is a new world, stunned by the horrors that linger in the aftermath of total war. The United States and Soviet Union are squaring off in a different kind of conflict, one that’s fought in the shadows, […]

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