News Flash: Uglies and Leviathan ebooks are on sale!
Both titles are $1.99 for all of December. ‘Snot bad.
(This applies to the USA only.)
And for Uglies on Kobo, click here. (Leviathan isn’t on sale on Kobo. Sorry!)
What the hell. I’m just going to throw in some laudatory quotes:
“Full of nonstop action, this steampunk adventure is sure to become a classic.”
—School Library Journal
“When a book pursues you into your dreams, you can’t ignore it.”
“Wouldn’t it be cool if the First World War had been fought with genetically engineered mutant animals, against steam-powered walking machines? And the answer is, Yes, it would.”
—The New York Times
“A superb piece of popular art.”
—New York Times
“This book, the first in a trilogy, asks engaging questions about the meaning of beauty, individuality, and betrayal. Highly recommended for SF fans or anyone who likes a good, thoughtful adventure.”
“With a beginning and ending that pack hefty punches, this introduction to a dystopic future promises an exciting series.”
—Kirkus Reviews (starred)
This is pretty cool. It’s a table restoration by Fiona S. and her grandma, featuring monoplanes, the Emperor’s airyacht, and a kraken on the top.
Here’s a close up of the air yacht Stamboul:
But wait, there’s more!
The side panels feature a flechette bat . . .
a strafing hawk . . .
a message lizard . . .
and the ever-popular perspicacious loris!
Truly a magnificent piece. And it’s great to see everything in such vibrant colors. May you have many fine tea parties on this table, Fiona.
Just a wee headsup: There may be some Uglies news before the end of the year, or in early 2014. Look for it right here, or in the pages of your favorite industry rag.
UPDATE: Ebooks of both Uglies and Leviathan are on sale for all of December in the USA. Click here for details.
Please enjoy the Russian cover of Goliath. The book comes out in December in Russia!
And here are the others, for your referencing pleasure:
The lovely Leviathan:
And the possibly even more awesome Behemoth:
Things I like about this series of covers:
Book 1 has Deryn, Book 2 has Alek, and Book 3 has them both. Like the US paperbacks, but with Deryn first.
The clothes are great (especially Alek’s leather trousers). Painter can paint.
Love the Leviathan itself. True to the book, but it glows in a way that only this color medium can produce.
The person in front with the Big Object in the background is kind of a theme of the books. That is, the struggles of the characters are foregrounded, but the scale of background events (and creatures and machines) is always huge and within view. Keith was very careful that the illustrations always alternated between close-ups to pulled-out images, from faces to Big Stuff. It’s nice to see both scales represented here on all three covers.
Well done, Eksmo.
ALSO: If you’ve never read this book I wrote called Uglies before, you can do so now for free on PulseIt, but you have to join up to do so.
If you live in the United Kingdom, you can acquire the e-book of Uglies for the low cost of FREE from iTunes.
[Alas, this offer is no longer.]
Hope all your NaNoWriMoings are going well. Today’s NaNo hint is: Don’t forget that visual aids can help you organize your novel!
Here’s my Action/Tension plot from the first few chapters of Behemoth. Each index card represents one chapter. I add the chapter description, the Action/Tension labels, and the color-coded POV pushpins (red for Deryn, blue for Alek). This is all really easy in Scrivener:
Rather than software, some writers use physical objects to help organize their novels. Here is Lauren Beukes’ “murder wall,” which she used to keep the serial killings in The Shining Girls straight:
Image ganked from this interview in Zola Books.
I can just imagine the South African police busting into Lauren’s home on an unrelated matter, seeing this murder wall, and being all, “Check the basement.”
Diana Peterfreund also uses a physical medium for plot tracking, color-coded sticky notes!
Her blog post about this “plot board” is here. This one is for the book Rampant, which I blurbed.
Those of you with more monochromatic tastes should check out Justine’s post about How to Write a Novel, which includes this spreadsheet for word-count and POV tracking:
Of course, it doesn’t matter what combination of yarn/software/post-its you employ. Whatever helps you visualize your novel’s structure, and gets your eyes out the trees so you can see the forest, is awesome.
Just remember, a good novel isn’t just a piece of text; it’s a terrain, a country, even a world. As its ruler, you should probably have a map.
For those of you who are unfamiliar, NaNoWriMo is also known as National Novel Writing Month, and is a grand tradition in which a few hundred thousand people attempt to write a book in thirty days. (Actually, they try to write several hundred thousand books. They aren’t all working on the same one. Duh.)
Alas, I finished Afterworlds only a few weeks ago, so it won’t come out until next October. So for next NaNoWriMo, I intend to produce vast quantities of writing advice posts for all of you. (Wondrous altruism or clever marketing? You decide.) But how does that help you brave NaNoWriMoers this year?
It does not.
Luckily, back in 2009, Justine and I switched off in creating a whole month’s worth of writing advice posts, one each day. And unlike tech advice and TV criticism, writing advice never gets old. So here’s a handy set of links for your NaNoWriMoing edification.
The odd-numbered posts are mine, and the evens are Justine’s.
Best of luck to you all!
As part of my continuing effort to BLOG MORE OFTEN, I bring you some fan art of a very lasting nature. Jess Y has been a fan of mine since my first YA book, Midnighters, came out. She has a particular love of Dess. (I would say it’s their rhyming names, but Dess is my favorite character too.)
Jess recently decided to immortalize her Dess-love in skin ink. So I present to you the polymath tattoo:
As you can see, it’s still a bit new and raw.
For those of you who haven’t read Midnighters, each of the five characters has their own symbol. The symbol for each character appears at the end of any chapter that they are the viewpoint character for. (BEST. SENTENCE. EVER.)
What you may not know is that I designed the symbols using a fractal program. (Those who can’t draw, fractal.) Alas, all of the original designs have been lost do to software decay. That is, the fractal software I used will no longer run or open files on today’s operating systems.
Luckily, I did save one of my early attempts as a jpg. So here it is:
Pretty cool, huh? My fractal math has left the building, so that’s all I have to say.
Note: Book-related tats are not a requirement for my fans. But feel free!
See you soon, gaudily festooned poltroons.
The Blue Mountains have been on fire the last couple of days, which is definitely not a good thing for Sydney. Bushfires are a natural part of the cycle of nature in Australia, but it doesn’t usually start up before the first day of summer. (It’s the middle of spring down here.)
This bodes ill for the next few months (and for the next few centuries of climatic uncertainty).
Here’s what Sydney looked like from my terrace yesterday at four in the afternoon. Note that the sun was high:
Click that image for the bigger, scarier version.
Justine and I are safe in the concrete jungle, of course, many kilometers away from the fire. But we’re still breathing it, and we’ve got friends whose homes are at risk.
On a lighter note, here’s an interview I did with Amy Stevenson of 4ZZZ Radio here in Australia. I talk about the Leviathan series a lot, but also about my next novel, Afterworlds.
I AM BACK. Yes, it’s been a while. But I’ve been writing, and a week ago I finished the first draft of my NEXT NOVEL. It is 135,000 words long, almost as long as Uglies and Pretties put together!
At the moment, this draft is with my agent and editor, and various novelist friends of mine. They’ll all have a gander and get back to me with comments and suggestions, and then there will be rewrites, copyedits, page proofs, sales meetings, cover designs, advanced reader copies, etc. Getting through all these stages means that Afterworlds will come out on October 28, 2014.
Yep. A year from now.
As always when I finish a book, I made a word cloud of Afterworlds. Word clouds take the most commonly occurring words in the text (omitting obvious ones like “the” and “was”) and size them by how often they appear.
I make these clouds partly to amuse and titillate you guys, and partly to make sure that there aren’t any overused words stinking up the joint. Check it out:
Okay, so what do we have here?
Darcy is the main character, so she’s the biggest word, naturally. Imogen is also key, as are Yamaraj and Lizzie. (Lizzie looks small to me, but her sections are in first person, so her name doesn’t appear as much!) Mindy, Kiralee, and Nisha are the other characters to appear, and they all seem about the right size. And yes, there is an important character that shows up as “mother”/”mom”.
Of the Dreaded Overused Words I look for, most aren’t there. No “eyebrows” or “frowned,” thank heavens. No “smiled” or “laughed.” But I will probably take a look at “looked” and “stared” when I do the rewrites. Looking ain’t a verb you need too much of.
What I mostly notice from this is how plain the words are. There’s very little sign of the genre of book I’ve written. To see what I mean, check out the word cloud of my last novel, Goliath:
Along with all the character names, this cloud has lots of words from the Leviathan milieu: “airship,” “Clanker,” “captain,” “cargo,” and “engines.” But you don’t have any of those in my new cloud. This is partly because Afterworlds is contemporary, and half of the book has no fantastic elements at all.
Indeed, this is a story told in relatively simple words. Notice “bad” and “little” in there, which make perfect sense. (Gotta read it to see why.) This makes sense, now that I see it revealed in the cloud. Must contemplate what it means, though. Certainly there’s a bit less world-building in Afterworlds than there was in the Leviathan series, but that makes sense for a stand-alone novel.
For more on the story of the book, check out this podcast with Sarah Wendell of
SBTB. It’s her interviewing me and Justine in Brisbane, and we discuss both our next-year books. Click here, then go to the bottom of that page and click the player controls to listen. Lots of me talking about the plot, which some might find a bit spoilery!
Enjoy. And be seeing you here more.
First of all, thanks to everyone who came to the Mortal Instruments viewing last night here in Sydney. It was a gas, and the screams were many. So. Many. Screams. Also, I got to sign someone’s Chicken McNuggets box, because global capitalism is global.
I have some cool Leviathan VR pictures to show you, but first here’s a post about my next two weeks. I’ll be at the Melbourne and Brisbane Writers Festivals, and hope that some of you will be too.
MELBOURNE WRITERS FESTIVAL
Click here to buy tickets.
Tuesday, 27 August
12:30 PM – 1:15 PM
ACMI Cinema 2
Corner Flinders and Swanston Streets
Participants: Scott Westerfeld
Chairperson: Rob James
Scott Westerfeld grew up surrounded by science and technology. It’s no wonder that his books – including Uglies, Leviathan, Midnighters and Peeps – are shaped by science. Find out what makes his stories tick, and how science can be a novelist’s best friend.
Wednesday, 28 August 2013
10:00 AM – 10:45 AM
Deakin Edge, Fed Square Federation Square
Corner Flinders and Swanston Streets
The Steampunk World of Leviathan
Participants: Scott Westerfeld, Naomi O’Brien-D’Ambra
The Leviathan trilogy is set in a steampunk World War I. The books even look like they were published in 1914, when almost all books were illustrated, even books for adults. Tour this extraordinarily rich world with the perfect guide, author Scott Westerfeld.
Wednesday, 28 August 2013
12:30 PM – 1:15 PM
ACMI Cinema 2
Corner Flinders and Swanston Streets
Science Fiction, Science Fact
Participants: Scott Westerfeld, Michael Pryor
Chairperson: Andrew McDonald
Scott Westerfeld and Michael Pryor talk about the inventions and ideas first put forward in fiction, later proved to be fact – or wildly off the mark. Who is the better guide: scientist or novelist? Or does the future rely on both?
I’m also teaching a YA Writing masterclass, but that is sold out.
Again, click here to buy tickets.
BRISBANE WRITERS FESTIVAL
Click here for tickets.
Friday Sept 6th
Maiwar Green, State Library of Queensland
Featuring Kevin Kwan, Clementine Ford, Scott Westerfeld, Justine Larbalestier, Kimberley Freeman (Kim Wilkins), Stuart MacBride and Benjamin Law reading work they scribbled in their youth. A special ‘Juvenilia’ mixed tape set by Simon Reynolds will wrap up the night.
No ticket required.
Saturday Sept 7th
State Library of Queensland
Scott Westerfeld and Max Barry talk with Marianne de Pierres about dystopias, being a teenager in a world that wants to kill you and our fascination with broken futures.
Justine and I are teaching a YA class here too. Also sold out.
And I’m also doing two sessions in the kids section, but I think those are limited to schools. If I’m wrong about that, go here and check them out.
Also, you should check out Justine’s blog for her schedule for both festivals.
I’ll be blogging more about my trip soon, but first a note about the opening of the City of Bones movie next week. Justine and I will be hosting a first-night screening here in Sydney, which is put together by Kinokuniya Bookstore. There will also be a special greeting from Cassie herself, using some sort of magic. (Or possibly recording devices.)
So if you live in Sydney, and enjoy seeing movies on the first night with a screaming, rambunctious, has-read-the-book-several-times crowd, I suggest coming along.
Also, there’s a costume contest!
Here’s the event page on FB, so you can do all that FaceBooky stuff with it. And here are the details for non-FB types:
WHEN: Thursday, 22nd August at 6:30pm
WHERE: Event Cinemas, George Street, Sydney
DRESS: Prizes for best costume
Tickets are on sale now and are strictly limited. Purchases can be made in-store (at the cashier counter) or over the phone: 02 9262-7996.
Be there or be truant.
There’s an iTunes sale on the Levithan series audiobooks. From now until August 27, you can buy any of the three for $5.95. (I assume this is US iTunes store only.)
These are really good, because Alan Cumming rocks.