stillsostrange: (Riff & Magenta)
I had plans to attend a summer solstice parade last night, and most of a Green Fairy costume assembled for the occasion. Then [livejournal.com profile] mmaresca informed me that The Bone Palace would be featured in a Naked Girls Reading performance. Well, dear reader, parades happen several times a year in Austin. Gorgeous burlesque dancers reading my books aloud--not so often. The reader turned out to be Zaftigg von BonBon.

Bunk.

After the show I blushingly introduced myself and got a glittery hug, which means that I have actually found the fabled auctorial glamour. Even awards that come with tiaras are not so glamourous.

I am suddenly incredibly motivated to finish The Poison Court.


In other news, my gym recently acquired a heavy bag. It is my new best friend. I spent ten minutes on it this morning, and now my knuckles are bruised. I want to punch things forever.
stillsostrange: (Words)
Because I...enjoy public humiliation? No, that's not right. Need motivation? Maybe that's it. Anyway, for whatever reason, I've joined the Clarion West write-a-thon this year.

2012 Clarion West Write-a-thon

I'm not sure exactly how this works. I write words and you donate money to other people? It seems odd, but whatever. I'm told it's for a good cause.
stillsostrange: (Agony)
Because [livejournal.com profile] plunderpuss asked on Twitter.

I've only had to do this once, with The Drowning City, but it went something like this:

My editor asked me if I knew any authors who might be willing to blurb the book. Luckily, I did. He also asked my agent if she had any suggestions. He then made a list of authors he thought might be appropriate--some of whom were Orbit authors and some who I'm pretty sure weren't--as well as my and [livejournal.com profile] arcaedia's suggestions. Those authors who were willing and who hadn't read the book in draft already were sent bound galleys. That's how I got blurbs from Jacqueline Carey and Brent Weeks.

Not every publisher sends out bound galleys; PDFs are also used, and sometimes the author will send out Word files, if that's all that's available. I've heard that some editors make the author do more work about soliciting blurbs, which sounds completely cruel. This is one of the times where professional networking may be of use--by which I mean meeting people at cons and being pleasant and friendly online, not spamming people on Twitter. DO NOT SPAM PEOPLE ON TWITTER. I MEAN IT!

If you know other writers, a polite email asking if they would be willing or able to read your book and possibly blurb it is perfectly okay. The worst that will happen is that a) they'll say no upfront, probably because of time constraints, or b) they'll agree to look at the ms but not actually have time or inclination to offer a blurb. DO NOT NAG PEOPLE. Obviously. If they have to time to read the book and have something positive to say, you'll probably get a blurb. Someone at your publisher will perform blurb-fu and trim the quote down to be punchy and cover-sized.

With any luck, the blurb won't say "No one can touch [AUTHOR] when he is on fire," or "[CHARACTER] is as hardboiled as a 5-minute egg." "Lush and evocative" seems pretty popular.

While I'm sure someone somewhere has said nice things about a book that they didn't really mean, most authors I know have no desire to lie to readers or their friends. I also have no idea how you would ever make money off blurbs. Maybe that only happens to people way more famous than me.
stillsostrange: (Default)
Tonight the Bat City Novelocracy and I are going to Péché. Drinking will happen. Maybe drunken brainstorming. I doubt a coherent post will happen afterward, but I'll try to take blurry phone pictures of cocktails. You'll have to make do with the adorable kitty picture in my last post.
stillsostrange: (Default)
Oops.

F is also for furniture. Namely, the two new bookcases I spent a chunk of my tax refund* on yesterday. Tonight they will be assembled and books shall be triumphantly placed upon them.

F also stands for furry menace. The kittens have taken over my bedroom, and scamper madly about, ready to trip the unwary and bring them down. They're not eating solid food yet, but they know they need to bring prey down. They'll figure out the flesh-rending eventually.

Does anyone have any suggestions for G?



* Refunds are a mixed blessing now. On the one hand, money! On the other hand, it means I didn't make a lot of writing income in 2011. I need to build the dungeon to hold my grad student ghostwriters.
stillsostrange: (Default)

I had my signing at Dragon's Lair Comics on Wednesday, and it was a lot of fun. People showed up and bought books, and I didn't even know some of them. I eventually passed signing duties over to Aswan, the store cat. She's much better at this sort of thing than I am.

The signing and a particularly heartwarming piece of fanmail have been the highlights of my writing week. Today the low came in having to bow out of an anthology I had really wanted to be part of, due to having run out of both miracles and chocolate coating.

Next week I'll be in Boston, signing at Pandemonium Books on Thursday. When I come home I get to begin in earnest the final revisions of Dreams. Final until I send it to [livejournal.com profile] arcaedia, anyway. But that's final enough for me.

stillsostrange: (Default)
Kingdoms has acquired a rating on Goodreads. Now I'm left to wonder if that means eARCs are going out, or if the reviewer is psychic. (It's a good rating, so she's clearly an accurate psychic.) If anyone hears of review copies, let me know.
stillsostrange: (Von says read)
I have been having quite the terrible no-good day, but I do have a bright spot to share:

On Thursday, March 22nd, [livejournal.com profile] matociquala and I will at Pandemonium Books in Boston, having a joint signing/launch for Range of Ghosts and Kingdoms of Dust, from 7 - 9 PM. Come hang out. We promise not to throw books at you. At least not hardbacks.
stillsostrange: (Driven)
I'm tired of coming up with alternate names for The Book Which Must Not Be Named, so I'll finally clarify the crazy book scrambling that's been going on around here since July.

Having delivered the three contracted books in The Necromancer Chronicles, I now have to come up with a proposal to show Orbit for an option novel. Either they like it (optimal, since I've been very happy with Orbit), or they pass and Fabulous Agent shops it elsewhere. My editor had some suggestions for possible option novels, which led to all my frantic scrambling to find a project that would make us both happy.*

In October, my editor left Orbit. Reader, I wailed; I tore my hair and beat my breast and rent my garments. Then I decided that since he wouldn't be the one we pitch the option novel to, I would be a shameless hack as practical as possible. So I started working on the fourth Necromancer Chronicle, The Winter Road, also known as Big Gay MacHamlet and That Damn (un)Norse Book.** I'm also revising Dreams, so I have two completely different projects to spread the insanity between.

I'd hoped that Orbit would assign me to a new editor fairly quickly, but since it's December and I haven't heard anything, I'm guessing that won't happen till next year.

So that's what's going on now. Any questions?



* I ended up with several different ideas I like, so it was a productive scramble.

** Unless it becomes The Ashen Throne, which is growing on me right now.
stillsostrange: (Siren)
Good morning, LJ! It's 6:25 in Kona, and I was awoken twenty minutes ago by my optometrist's office calling from a place where it is not 6 AM. Luckily, that got me up in time to watch dawn breaking across the ocean that is right under my balcony. Yes, I am in an honest-to-Cod beach front resort. Last night we saw eels in the tide pools under the balcony; this morning the tide has come in.

I may have found the glamour.

Sadly, the beach front resort lacks wireless in the rooms. I'm currently using a phone as a hotspot, but uploading pictures will have to wait till I can explore the supposed wireless in the lobby.

But first I think it's time to get up, get my free breakfast, and explore the beach.
stillsostrange: (Words)
Finish my Halloween costume.
Finish a website.
Attend the Pflugerville library's SFF readers' meet-up
Finish (by which I mean start) a piece of Shadow Unit art.
Finish a proposal for That Damn Book.
Revise the ending of Dreams for my crit group. Because not enough people have suffered already.
Read and crit two novels.
Come up with an idea for a Mi-go story.

I can do all this in two months, right? At least I'll have the flight to and from Hawaii to get some reading done.

Also on that list: get out of bed and put some pants on.
stillsostrange: (Blood)
I mentioned some time ago that I had sold "Bone Garden"--now I have a few more details. I've sold "Bone Garden" to Subterranean Press, for A Fantasy Medley 2, edited by Yanni Kuznia. I've been a fan of SubPress for years, and I'm thrilled senseless to be included in this anthology.

I don't have all the release details, but it will include a limited signed hardcover version. I'll get signature sheets! This is the fanciest I have ever been.

For those playing along at home, "Bone Garden" is a novelette set in Erisín shortly after the events of The Bone Palace, also known as "Demimonde Theatre Boys vs. Oracular Demons", or the story in which I kill [livejournal.com profile] sovay.

And now I have to get back to page proofs for Kingdoms.
stillsostrange: (Default)
Today was pretty awesome, in an understated way. First an anthology invite came through, for something I really want to be in. Of course this means scrambling madly to finish a story by the end of the month, but oh well. Also glamour-related was the news that as [livejournal.com profile] matociquala's arm-candy, I don't have to plan my own plane tickets to Eurocon. This is a huge relief.

Next was bouldering with [livejournal.com profile] fadethecat, who will be climbing circles around me in a couple of weeks. Yet another impetus to push myself up a grade or two. :P

The first day of serious dieting lifestyle change went well, concluding with mushroom & cannellini paprikas from Appetite for Reduction, served with fauxtato (or caulipots, as the book calls it--a combination of mashed cauliflower and potatoes). This might actually be better than the chickpea piccata, and stupidly healthy. I splurged and added a side of wilted beet greens. But don't worry that I'm becoming a filthy hippie; we used cheese and cream in the potatoes.

I've also written a thousand words today on the final chapter of Kingdoms, and will continue writing until it's finished. Then it flies away and I absolutely and for reals won't look at it again until editor and/or agent give me an edit letter.

Also, it rained, if only a pathetic drizzly amount.
stillsostrange: (The Drowning City)
The Orbit France site has a book trailer for La Cité des eaux. How awesome is that? (The text goes by too fast for my poor French to keep up.)

I started to make my own trailer for TDC back in the day, but it fell prey to the apathy demon. I should make one for Kingdoms.
stillsostrange: (Dark City)
I've written 3,000 words so far today, which was all of chapter 26. Chapter 26 contained a magefight, a terrible decision, and an irrevocable(ish) oath. Chapter 27 contains the next terrible decision, and hopefully the earth-shattering kaboom. After that it's epilogue all the way home.

Of course, my momentum is being derailed for dinner and socializing, so I can stare wild-eyed at people for a couple hours and say nothing but "Do you know how close I am?! I'm almost there!"

This is probably why no one wants to take writers out in public.
stillsostrange: (Default)
Kingdoms of Dust

Words today: 4,000. That's right. 1,500 of them were rewriting an old scene, but the rest were all forward motion. This may not be a personal best, but it's pretty close.



67000 / 75000 words. 89% done!

Darling: “Lovely,” Raisa said, “but don’t you know that human meat is sweeter?” Her eyes glinted.

“So I’ve heard, but I’m afraid this was the best I could manage. They count the humans, you see, in case one goes missing.”
Tyop: n/a
Mean things: Arrowed! Broken collarbone. Captured by antags. Chamber pots.

The manticore has wandered off, and Isyllt had been captured rescued by the antags. Now they just have to make her an offer she can't refuse, and we can get on with the space battle.

Now I have to clean the catboxes....
stillsostrange: (Agony)
Have any other authors with Bookscan access noticed a sales spike in the past two weeks? I wonder if it has anything to do with Borders' store-closing sales.
stillsostrange: (melancholy)
As if the crushing deadline stress wasn't enough, tomorrow I'm having pictures taken. If I'd thought of it, I would have stolen a play from [livejournal.com profile] jmeadows and had you guys vote on what I should wear. At this late hour the choices are pretty much between purple top or black top (or fuchsia!), black skirt or grey skirt, boots or kicky Fluevog heels?

A Cthulhu mask would make this easier.
stillsostrange: (Default)
Thank you for all the condolences about the cat.

Yesterday was a much better day, involving birthday sushi for a friend and no death. Today I get to spend alternating writing with cleaning the house, since my parents are coming over tomorrow. With any luck, in addition to a clean kitchen, I can also get to the beginning of a sandstorm today.
stillsostrange: (Default)
Happy Solstice, everyone!

We had heavy--and oddly pink--cloud cover last night, so I only caught a few glimpses of the eclipse in progress.

I woke up to two Solstice presents today: a royalty check for Lovecraft Unbound (YAY!), and a scratchy throat (BOO!). Now I get to make tea and oatmeal and finishing rewriting Chapter 1. This is my third rewrite. I would like it to be the last.

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