Friday Nattering Et Hangovers

Helloooo! I didn't meant to go poof vanish-y, but I did. And I'm afraid the next week or two is likely to be more of the same.

However, I didn't want to miss saying that the Bluegrass Writers Studio faculty and students showed Jenn and I a fabulous time last weekend. And it was so nice having her here. If there's any agent on the planet who is more willing to answer questions and be candid and explain how this crazy business we call pub works, well, I don't know them. (And this is just one of the many reasons I feel so lucky she's my agent. And my friend. <3) We also talked about the new secret book, which I'd just sent her to read, and much of my AWOL-ness this week has been because I'm revising (spoiler alert: she likes it; whew). After a bit from Blackwood, I read a little section of it at my reading–audience choice, and in my experience, people always want to hear from the new secret thing–and burbled about it afterward and was very much relieved at how enthusiastic people were. And they sold out of copies of Blackwood after the reading, ever happy-making. My husband, the original Christopher Rowe, is in this program, and so I went back last night to see Justin Cronin read and hang out and people still wanted to talk about the new novel. This is the kind of thing that makes a writer happy.

Having Jenn in town meant I finally got to meet a couple of other local authors previously only known on the twitter machine: Andrew Shaffer and Tiffany Reisz. Not to mention, one of my favorite things in life is taking visitors to our fab local bookstores and favorite restaurants, and I got to do that too. Puck the Dog, who is famously picky and hates everyone, loooooves Jenn. So there. A great weekend.

Anyway, I'm busily trimming away bits of research loveliness that aren't strictly speaking enhancing the story (or unstrictly, let's be honest!), and doing a bazillion other things, and still trying to catch up on reading I owe people and wearing the wrong earrings together by mistake, etc. But I shall return victorious or triumphant or something or other. I also managed to take no pictures, so no pictures to share.

But I do have a few little Friday hangovers:

Friday Hangovers

Just a few leetle things, most of which I've already shared on twitter, but things flit by so quickly there:

Resolving, Etc., And A Reading

Welcome to 2013, dear readers.

I've been really enjoying everyone's resolutions posts this year, but don't have much more to say here than what I did already. I really only have one overall resolution* this year: to play more. Which isn't to say I intend to do less work–I enjoy working (plus, I can't afford not to)–but that I want to have more time for play. This is harder than you think for someone who likes work and perhaps, at times, is guilty of saying yes too often. I suspect that won't change, but my plan is to say yes to Actual Fun Things Too. So there.

I sent off the secret book to mine agent on New Year's Eve, just barely making my own personal deadline. So now I'm trying to catch up on everything else–email, manuscript reading, etc. etc.–before I travel back to revisionland. If I owe you something, it'll be coming in the next week or two.

A few other things:

  • And I'm particularly excited to be starting off this new year as an official guest author at the Bluegrass Writers Studio winter MFA residency this coming weekend in Lexington. Aforementioned lovely agent Jennifer Laughran will be there as well, so we can do a panel for students on Saturday. BUT there is also a free and open to the public reading event featuring yours truly that evening at 7:30 at the Hilton downtown. I'll be reading some combination of things–while I may read a snippet of Blackwood, I'll read from either The Woken Gods or the secret book too. And I'll be around after to chat and sign any copies of Blackwood people want (I believe there will be some for sale). All the details here. If you are local, there's lots of other great evening events happening too. So, check out that schedule.

And now I must crawl back into the catch-up cave.

*Other mini-resolution: Hopefully, at some point this year, I'll get my act together and find someone to help me give ye olde website/blog a makeover (problem is, I just want a design spruce and face lift, but I like typepad's back end and hosting *clings to what I know*). If you know someone or are someone willing to work within those parameters, lemme know. Though I probably won't be ready to tackle it for a couple of months yet.

Season Of Reflection

That's what we're in, isn't it? We're surrounded by lists of things from the old year, and thinking ahead to what we're looking forward to or hope to achieve in 2013. This past year was a crazy packed one for me, in a way I was only tentatively allowing myself to hope for at this time a year ago.

What a difference a year makes–since then I've really begun the career I've been working toward for years by selling two books and having one come out (!),  having that book optioned for TV and then put into development at M-freaking-TV (yeah, I still can't believe that happened), and, in addition to everything else, writing two books this year. (Yes, I got to the end of my revision on the secret book; doing clean-up and it will be off my desk for a while by the end of the year.) You were not apocalyptic, but you were full of surprises and anxiety and busybusyness, 2012.

ANYway, editor Amanda asked us for Best lists of 2012 for the Strange Chemistry blog. As I explain over there, I'm a little fatigued by the whole concept of Best of lists at the moment (though not too fatigued to blow kisses at Kat Howard at Fantasy Matters, Leo Elijah Cristea, and Jenny Davidson for including Blackwood in their end of year reading wrap-ups this week). But one of the things I have learned this year–and, oh boy, I have learned a great many things–is that bookstores are even more important than I thought they were. And I've always thought they were important. I remain thrilled that you can pick Blackwood up at B&N, but a great gift of having the book come out has been getting to meet and talk to so many new book people (book people are the best people) and many of the most special times this year took place at independent bookstores. Each one unique and wonderful, and a reflection of the community it serves. As a new author, the support of booksellers has meant more than I can say. But I tried in my entry about my Favorite Places of 2012, writing about the seven fabulous indies I got to visit this year.

Go check it out, and leave your own indie love in the comments if you like. I'm hoping to get to some new places this year, especially when The Woken Gods comes out (July! soon enough I will start to talk more about this and at some point there will be a cover and ARCs and things of that sort! panic!). And while these are stores I wanted to single out because I visited them this year, please know that I appreciate each and every bookseller, reader, blogger, librarian and generally kind soul who has read Blackwood, reviewed it, put it into someone's hands or encouraged someone else to read it. I mentally give a frolicking kitten wings whenever a copy is handsold or passed on to a friend. And I hope you'll all be excited about The Woken Gods too. I'm excited for you to read it.

But who knows what 2013 holds? Not me. And I'm okay with that. I'll take another ticket for the roller coaster, please.

Happy New Year, everyone.

Friday Hangovers, Quicker Than Kris Kringle Edition

Guest Post: Emma Newman & A Split Worlds Story


Today I'm bringing you something a bit different than usual, but undoubtedly a treat–a guest post complete with bonus story from the fabulous Emma Newman, set in the world of her forthcoming fantasy novels for adults with good taste. The first, The Split Worlds: Between Two Thorns, will be out soon (pretty cover to the right). I'll let her tell you what this is all about….


Emma Newman: In 2013 the marvellous Angry Robot books will be publishing three Split Worlds novels, the first is out in March and called "Between Two Thorns." This story is part of a crazy thing I decided to do before I got the book deal and was forging ahead with the project on my own: releasing a new story every week for a year and a day, hosted on a different site every time, all set in the Split Worlds. I wanted to give readers a taste of my kind of urban fantasy and have the opportunity to build in secrets and extra tit-bits for those people who, like me, love the tiny details. It's also been a major part of my world-building work alongside writing the novels.

This is the forty-second tale in the year and a day of weekly short stories set in The Split Worlds.  If you would like me to read it to you instead, you can listen here. You can find links to all the other stories, and the new ones as they are released here.  You can also sign up to get the stories delivered to your inbox, one per week for a year and a day.

The first part of this story can be read here or listened to here.

Story starts behind the cut tag:


Tuesday Hangovers

Friday Hangovers

Tripping Whirlwind

Back from the last travel of the year, which was a weekend so packed it seems I must have been gone for a week. But I know I wasn't, because it was all so quick and there were far too many people I didn't get to see at all. Alas! Next trip to New York will be longer.

The lovely and wonderful Delia Sherman and Ellen Kushner were kind enough to let me stay with them, and we had some great talks and meals and even went to see a play–something I really don't do often enough. (It was Volpone, an acid Renaissance comedy that featured an interesting cast playing truly despicable characters.) I also managed lunch at Tea & Sympathy (yum) with Ellen Datlow and Genevieve Valentine. Then we meandered around seeing holiday sights (and possibly witnessing the birth of RAR–crowd-induced rage-a-hol syndrome), including some fantastic window displays:


Bergdorf Goodman windows were amazing.

(Bergdorf Goodman)

(More behind the cut…)


Look There And A Sweet Deal

Home from first mini-leg of this week's travel, and brain is playing catch up…as is the rest of me. A couple of quick things I wanted to point to, though.

  • Thing the first – Blackwood gets reviewed by the one and only Colleen Mondor in her latest column at Bookslut. Snippet: "Bond concocts her own gumbo of story here, with a blend of mystery, thriller, paranormal, and romance to create a densely packed adventure that sucks readers in with a blistering plot pace but then keeps them riveted with some truly dark and scary moments. … Thoughtful teens will eat this novel up, and honestly, who could blame them?" This whole review made me so happy, because this was the book I wanted to write and Colleen is one of the people whose taste on books I trust and admire most in the world. *beam* Also happy-making to be sharing that column with some of my own favorites from this year.
  • Thing the second – Strange Chemistry is running a buy-one-get-one-free e-book deal for any of the five launch titles–including Blackwood–through December at the Angry Robot Trading Company, where you can always get DRM-free versions of its e-books (along with 6 and 12 month e-subscriptions where you can get them all automagically and at a hefty discount). The prices are UK-ized, but the deal's good everywhere (it'll convert to US $ when you check out). All you have to do is go to this page, select the books and the discount will be applied at check-out.