swan_tower: (Default)

Tomorrow, y’all. Tomorrow, Within the Sanctuary of Wings will be available from all reputable vendors of books! If you’ve been waiting for the series to be complete before you pick it up, now is your chance to start! If you know someone who has been waiting for the series to be complete before they pick it up, now is your chance to tell them to start!

My upcoming tour schedule is here, with a new item added: a May 11th signing at University Bookstore in Seattle, where I will be joined by the inestimable Todd Lockwood.

Also, don’t forget that the illustrated edition of Lies and Prophecy is currently 30% off at Kobo. Just enter “APR30” as a coupon code at checkout to get the discount. The sale ends today!

Finally, I’ve contributed a number of items to this year’s Con or Bust auction. There are three lots:

Bidding is open now, and will continue until May 7th. It’s a great organization and a great cause, so go forth and bid!

. . . see you all tomorrow!

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: (natural history)

It’s been just two days since the release of In the Labyrinth of Drakes, and already I have stuff I should link to!

First of all, I’m up at Tor.com with a nonfiction post titled “Learning to See Through Photography”, where I talk about how I went from taking really crappy pictures of my camp friends to displaying selling prints at Borderlands.

I also set a land-speed record for time elapsed from drafting a post to it going live on someone else’s site: around midnight I started writing a requested post about dragons (riffing off the panel I was on this past FOGcon) and sent it off to my UK publicist at about 1:30 in the morning. By the time I went to bed at 3, it had already been posted to SFF World! Talk about quick turnaround . . . .

And I know I linked to this before, but I should mention again that “From the Editorial Page of the Falchester Weekly Review” went live on Tuesday. You don’t need to have read the Memoirs to understand the story, nor does it contain any real spoilers.

But! Speaking of Borderlands!

This Saturday, at 3 p.m., I will be doing a reading and signing. It will be lonely without Mary Robinette Kowal — come keep me company! :-) (And come see my pretty photos on the wall!) After that, I’m doing two other tour stops in the immediate future:

Monday, April 11th, at 7 p.m., I will be at the Powell’s Bookstore in Beaverton, in the Cedar Hills Crossing mall.

Tuesday, April 12th, also at 7 p.m., I will be at the University Bookstore in Seattle — in company with a certain artist. So if you want to get your books signed not only by me, but by Todd Lockwood, this is your chance to do both at once!

Further plans include Mysterious Galaxy in San Diego for their “birthday bash” on May 7th, the Bay Area Festival of Books in June, and in between those things, my Very First International (Non-Convention) Appearance at Les Imaginales in France. I don’t know whether any of my European readers will be able to make it there, but if so, I’d love to see you!

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: (natural history)

So yesterday I’m on my way to Borderlands Books for the last reading/signing event with Mary (the tour isn’t quite over, as I have BayCon yet to go, but I’m almost there), and I see that somebody has mentioned me on Twitter.

That someone is Victoria Ying, an artist at Sony Pictures Animation, who has worked on a couple of films you might have heard of: Tangled, Wreck It Ralph, Frozen, Big Hero 6 (OH MY GOD HOW MUCH DID I LOVE THAT MOVIE). She has apparently read A Natural History of Dragons . . . and this is the result.

. . . it’s wee!Isabella. With a jar of vinegar. And Greenie pickling away in it.

<melts on account of adorableness>

Seeing that, and then reading to a packed crowd at Borderlands (it’s always a good sign when they run out of chairs), and then meeting this lady, who showed up with a dragon on her shoulder:

Honeyseeker at Borderlands Books

It’s a good way to (almost) end the tour.

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: (Default)

. . . something shiny and new. I won’t show it to you yet, but here’s a hint:

paint supplies

Full tour schedule is here. If you live in or near Chicago, San Diego, Petaluma, Portland, Salt Lake City, Scottsdale, Houston, Raleigh, Chapel Hill, Asheville, or San Francisco, I hope to see you there!

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: cover detail from Voyage of the Basilisk (Voyage of the Basilisk)

Mary Robinette Kowal and I will be going on tour again in May, for Of Noble Family (her) and Voyage of the Basilisk (me — out two weeks from today!). We’re hitting a few of the same locations as last time, but also some new ones; check below to see if we’ll be anywhere near you!

Tuesday, May 5, Chicago, IL

Wednesday, May 6, San Diego, CA

Thursday, May 7, Petaluma, CA

Friday, May 8-Sunday, May 10, Coos Bay, OR

Tuesday, May 12, Beaverton, OR

Thursday, May 14, Salt Lake City, UT

Saturday, May 16, Scottsdale, AZ

Sunday, May 17, Houston, TX

Monday, May 18, Raleigh, NC

Tuesday, May 19, Chapel Hill, NC

Wednesday, May 20, Asheville, NC

I will also be at BayCon the following weekend, and may have a Borderlands event in there somewhere, too. I’ll post the details here when I know about that for sure.

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

swan_tower: from the cover art for my novel The Tropic of Serpents (Tropic of Serpents)

Design Your Own Dragon ends tomorrow night! Get your entry in while the getting is good . . . .

Me, I’m home from tour. The fact that I am exceedingly glad to be back has more to do with the wear and tear of shifting from hotel to airport to cab to store than to do with the tour events themselves, which were splendid. Mary Robinette Kowal and I drew some pretty good crowds together, and it turns out we make for compatible traveling companions — which was by no means a guarantee! We’d met a couple of times before, at conventions and such, and of course our books make a good pairing with each other . . . but that didn’t necessarily mean we’d get along on the road. Despite Mary having her own hashtag for travel woes, I quite liked traveling with her. It turns out we see eye-to-eye on a number of fronts, ranging from fiction to how early we should get to the airport, and that’s valuable when you’re spending a week and a half together and suffering the aforementioned wear and tear.

Plus! There were costumes! And dragon bones!

I foolishly did not get anyone to take photos on my own phone, so rather than stealing other people’s pictures, I will link you to them. This report at A Truant Disposition shows the whole thing pretty well, from my dress and Mary’s to our respective song-and-dance bit (a mini puppet show on her part, a mini naturalist lecture on mine). Geeky Library has some more, and I quite like this photo from @ghostwritingcow on Twitter. The “dragon bones” are the thing I alluded to before the tour: Mary suggested I obtain replica dinosaur fossils from Skulls Unlimited, and use them as dragon substitutes. For the curious, the skull and the smaller claw are from a velociraptor, while the tooth is from a T-Rex and the larger claw is from a megaraptor. (The tiny skull, which I don’t think got photographed, is actually supposed to be a “dragon skull;” Mary picked it up at a natural history museum in Utah.)

Touring is a lot more fun in company, I have to say. Not only does it jazz up the event itself, by giving you somebody to riff off of, it does a lot to mitigate the “oh god I’m in another airport” drudgery of the travel itself. So props to Tor for putting us together, and I hope for a chance to do something like this again in the future.

Originally published at Swan Tower. You can comment here or there.

Stage Two

May. 18th, 2009 08:38 am
swan_tower: (ship)
Am now in Indiana, despite the best efforts of rental car companies to prevent me from getting here. Was in Ohio this weekend, despite the best efforts of the airline travel industry to prevent me from getting there. Will be bouncing back and forth to Chicago a couple of times in the next two weeks; hope nothing tries to prevent that. Then London. Then New York. Then home.

This trip is crazy.
swan_tower: (love blood and rhetoric)
Now we're at 20K. Once upon a time, this would have been a fifth of a book; since this novel's planned for 140K, it's a seventh.

That feels like quite a bit less.

But I made some interesting decisions in tonight's writing, like answering the question of "how will this character find out about this otherwise well-concealed thing?" with the tidy solution of "they'll tell him." I need to make sure they have good reasons for that, of course, but it'll be easier than contriving a reason he can stumble across it on his own. And this gives me a chance to spin a particular element of the Onyx Court in a direction I haven't taken it before. When you're writing a series, these things matter.

Now, however, we go into the Month of Unpredictable Progress. I'll be on the road, without my research materials or a quiet place to work half the time, so for the next four weeks, 1K/day goes out the window. I'll get what I can get, when I can get it. And then in mid-June we'll see what good that semi-composting time has done me.

(Hopefully a lot.)

Word count: 20,718
LBR census: Love (of the puppy-dog sort) and rhetoric (of the rebellious sort).
Authorial sadism: Knowing how to hook Irrith.
swan_tower: (exercise)
In non-Deeds of Men news, I had a really satisfactory night at karate.

I don't think I've come out and said here that I'm going to be out of town for four straight weeks, traveling hither and yon for family events and a friend's wedding and research and so on. This will include a week in London, so look for a return of the trip blogging. I'm pretty excited.

But it means I'll be missing four straight weeks of karate, which is honestly a little frustrating. I learned pinan nidan recently, a new kata, and have just started practicing it; in a month everything I was told about the neko ashi bits will have no doubt fallen out of my head. (Yes, I can practice it on my own, and may very well, but it isn't the same as having a sensei watch and correct you. I might end up practicing bad habits without knowing it.) On the other hand, tonight I had a better-than-average sparring experience, and while that's going to rust even more badly than my kata while I'm gone, it's encouraging to go into my travels with a high note fresh in my memory. (Some nights, my timing and aim and reflexes are on. Other nights . . . not so much.)

I actually asked Shihan whether we had a sibling dojo in London. (Our own place has seen visitors from Hawaii, Germany, and Slovakia in the time I've been there; it wasn't unreasonable to wonder.) Alas, we don't -- or perhaps not "alas," seeing as how if we did I'd have to decide whether I'd really haul my gi across the Atlantic, and whether I'd have any energy for practice after walking all over the city. This way, I don't have to find out how lazy I really am.

Oh well. I'll just do situps and pushups and shiko dachi every day, right? Right???

Sure I will.

Come mid-June, I'm going to be rusty like a rusty thing. Sigh.

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