Reskinned

Behold the new website, reskinned in honor of Afterworlds (which now has its own page at last). I hope you enjoy the new look.

Let me know in the comments below if anything is broken anywhere, especially in the Forum.

Next week I’ll be at San Diego Comic Con, so if you’re there come see my panel, Sunday at 1PM or come to my signing at the Mysterious Galaxy Booth (#1119) on Saturday, 1:00p.m. – 1:30p.m.

If you’re in San Diego but not going to Comic Con, come see me at the The Yellow Book Road Bookstore, where I’ll be talking about Leviathan and Afterworlds.

The Yellow Book Road Bookstore
2750 Historic Decatur Road
San Diego, CA 92106
Sunday, July 27
7:00p.m.
Store: 619-955-5188

And finally, here’s the awesome animated cover for the UK edition of Afterworlds:

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Pretty cool. See (some of) you on San Diego!

On Tour in 2014 (Updated)

With Afterworlds coming out, I’ll be traveling and making appearances all year long. The tour in September and October isn’t set yet, but here are a few places I’ll definitely be:

Comic Con
San Diego, CA
July 24-27

Signing at the Mysterious Galaxy Booth (#1119)
Saturday, July 26
1:00p.m. – 1:30p.m.
My books will be on sale there too!

“What’s Hot in YA?” panel
Sunday, July 27
1:00p.m. – 2:00p.m.
Room: 25ABC
Signing afterward in the Sails Pavilion:
AA09 02:30 PM – 03:30 PM

The Yellow Book Road Bookstore
Just me, talking about Leviathan and Afterworlds
2750 Historic Decatur Road
San Diego, CA 92106
Sunday, July 27
7:00p.m.
Store: 619-955-5188

Leaky Con
Orlando, FL
July 30-Aug 3
Details forthcoming, but I’ll be there!

Gen Con
Indianapolis, IN
Aug 14-16
Details forthcoming.

Texas Teen Book Festival
Austin, TX
October 18
Details forthcoming.

YallFest
Charleston, SC
Nov 7-8
Details forthcoming.

Also, if you’re a fan of Justine and live in Australia, her new novel, Razorhurst, is out there this week. She’ll be launching it in in Sydney and Melbourne, so click here if you want to join her at the party!

Anyway, that’s how my year is shaping up so far. There will be many more events, especially when I go on tour for the release of Afterworlds on September 23.

Hope I get to see a lot of you in person!

In the meantime, the Afterworlds trailer remains awesome:

Click here to see it bigger.

Donate to Young Writers

As you guys know, I’ve been matching donations to NaNoWriMo’s Young Writers Program. Today, Tuesday June 17, is the best time to donate, because folks who donate between noon and 1PM US Eastern (9AM-10AM Pacific) will be automatically entered to win one of five signed copies of Afterworlds.

That’s right, you get to read it NOW.

The YWP is revamping their website, refreshing their already excellent (and free!) curriculum guides for schools who participate in Nano, and expanding their outreach to correctional facilities, halfway houses, and juvenile detention facilities.

Click here to donate and support young writers.

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Afterworlds Trailer on io9

The trailer for my next book, Afterworlds, will premier on io9 sometime today! (When, exactly? That’s a secret!) It will appear right here later tonight.

Update: Click here to see it on io9.

My two events at BEA today (Friday, May 30) are:

The Craft of Writing Panel
Me with Brandon Mull, Kiera Cass, and Amy Ewing.
Uptown Stage, Javits Center
2:00 – 2:30PM

Afterworlds Signing
S&S booth #2638-9, Level 3
3:45 – whenever 150 copies are gone.

Hope you guys like the trailer! In the meantime, check out my HUGE BANNER at BEA:

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Me at BEA (& Heavenly Fire Launch)

To all you folks coming to Book Expo America in NYC, I’ll be signing copies of Afterworlds and otherwise entertaining you! For you non-BEA attenders, I’ll also be at the 92nd St Y for the launch of Cassandra Clare’s City of Heavenly Fire. And there’s also a surprise on Friday. (Scroll down.)

Here’s the whole week:

Book Launch for The City of Heavenly Fire
With me, Maureen Johnson, Kelly Link, and Holly Black.
Lexington Avenue at 92nd St
Kaufmann Concert Hall
Monday, May 26
10:00PM

Update: Sorry, I got sick and can’t do Cassie’s thing. I’m on the mend, though, and will be WELL for the rest of the week. Everyone else will be there tonight, so click here for tickets and details.

BEA EVENTS

Talent Show and Silent Auction
River Pavilion, Javits Convention Center
Wednesday, May 28
5:00-7:30PM

Join the ABC Children’s Group and the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression (ABFFE) in supporting and protecting the free speech rights of young readers. More than 100 pieces of art from well-known children’s illustrators will be auctioned. Proceeds from the auction support ABFFE, the Kids’ Right to Read Project, and Banned Books Week.

I shall be performing my uncanny “double-Donald.” You must buy tickets!

The Craft of Writing Panel
Me with Brandon Mull, Kiera Cass, and Amy Ewing.
Uptown Stage, Javits Center
Friday, May 30
2:00 – 2:30PM

Afterworlds Signing
S&S booth #2638-9, Level 3 (not the cattle yard)
Javits Center
Friday, May 30
3:45 – whenever 150 copies are gone!

Afterworlds Trailer Revealed
Friday, May 30
Time: ????
Website: io9

Stay tuned for details on this. But here’s a behind-the-scenes picture from making the trailer:

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Pretty cool, huh? More still coming in the next week.

And finally, I’m still matching any and all contributions to the NaNoWriMo Young Writers Program, the wing of Nano that assists teen novelists. The YWP is revamping their website, refreshing their already excellent (and free!) curriculum guides for schools who participate in Nano, and expanding their outreach to correctional facilities, halfway houses, and juvenile detention facilities.

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Donate in the next month through this website, and Justine and I will match the first ten grand of your donations.

Tell your friends!

Strafing Eagles

If you thought the strafing hawks in Leviathan seemed unbelievable, behold the 1912 French air force experiments with eagles:

strafingeagles

Note that these weren’t engineered creatures like in my books, nor were they equipped with special razor talons. They were just regular eagles using their own claws.

Of course, in 1912 airplanes were barely reaching tops speeds of 160KPH (100MPH), and the world altitude record was about 4000 meters (13,000 ft) for heavier-than-air craft. Depending on the species, eagles can get close to that speed while diving, and have been spotted at higher altitudes.

I’m not sure what top airship altitude is in 1912, but it was probably higher than 4000 meters. But there’s no way an airship could go faster than an eagle back then. So the whole thing probably seemed feasible, except for the tricking business of training eagles to attack something much bigger, and to tell friend from foe.

I have no idea how long this program lasted, but it probably didn’t bear much fruit. (Lucky for the eagles, who got to stay out of the Great War. Though the pigeons wound up fighting.) By 1914, planes were flying at up to 200KPH and at altitudes of 6000 meters, beyond the capacity of any bird to hunt.

But as I often say, you can’t always tell what technologies are feasible before they’re invented. From way back then, walking machines and fighting eagles looked like a real possibility.

This attack eagles story was a hit all over the world, by the way. Here’s another version ganked from the Freeman’s Journal in Sydney, Australia, 4 July 1912.

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A pretty weird moment in military history.

Okay, I’m still matching any contributions you guys make to the NaNoWriMo Young Writers Program, the wing of Nano that assists teen novelists. The YWP is revamping their website, refreshing their already excellent (and free!) curriculum guides for schools who participate in Nano, and expanding their outreach to correctional facilities, halfway houses, and juvenile detention facilities.

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Donate in the next month through this website, Justine and I will match the first ten grand of your donations.

Tell your friends!

Support Young Writers

As a little kid, I understood by doing. I rarely listened to music without picking up an instrument, or watched TV without twitching along with the scenes, like those old guys whose shoulders dip and fists clench whenever a boxing match is on. More important to the ultimate course of my life, I couldn’t read without writing.

The word “fanfic” had barely been invented in those pre-internet days, but I spent thousands of pages cloning Tolkien, wrote many proto-novels channeling Joanna Russ, and still commit the occasional Raymond Chandler-esque simile.

Writing has always been a part of my reading. I think it’s a part of any writer’s reading. We understand books by making them.

That’s why I’m a supporter of NaNoWriMo, the month-long festival that invites everyone to become a novelist. A few years ago, Justine and I produced writing tips for every day of November. And my next book is about a young Wrimo who sells her novel to a big publishing house and moves to NYC.

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But I’m here today to raise money. This year, the NaNoWriMo Associate Board is focusing on the Young Writers Program, the wing of Nano that assists teen novelists. The YWP is revamping their website, refreshing their already excellent (and free!) curriculum guides for schools who participate in Nano, and expanding their outreach to correctional facilities, halfway houses, and juvenile detention facilities.

This is all great stuff. If you love novels and writers, you should help out. And as a bonus, if you donate in the next month through this website, Justine and I will match the first ten grand of your donations.

Seriously. We all want to see the novel flourish in the future, right? We want young people to understand the form, to embrace its history and its future, and to continue the mad practice of creating these absurdly long, imperfect strings of text.

We all want this.

So click here to read more about the YWP and to donate. Then tell your friends to do the same.

Afterworlds Special ARC Cover

As you know, I’ve already revealed the cover of Afterworlds, three posts ago. But I also wanted to show you the cover of the special advanced readers’ copies (ARCs) sent to bookstore owners and the like, because it’s seriously my favorite promotional object of my entire career:

afterworlds ARC

Now, I know that looks like the back cover, but it’s the FRONT, because the blurbs were so funny that Sales was like, “Put them on the front!” (And yes, they are real blurbs. Thanks to John, Maureen, and Shannon!)

Alas, only 200 copies of this were printed, and they are hard to acquire. I only own three, and you can’t have them!

For those of you in the trade, there will be many more ARCs with the real cover, at places like Book Expo America. (I’m signing there!) But I love that these silly ones are in short supply.

So collectible.

Also, I knew this thing was long, but now that it’s here in physical form and 599 pages, I realize how THICK that is:

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As you can see it’s 5cm (2 inches) thick, almost twice as fat as Justine‘s next book, Razorhurst. Which is her longest book yet.

Of course, I’m cheating because it’s really two books (Darcy’s book and the book about Darcy). But still, I win.

Future of Storytelling

Here’s a longer video from The Creator’s Project (a Vice and Intel collaboration), about the Future of Storytelling work that the USC School of Cinematic Arts World Building Media Lab has been doing with my Leviathan series.

What interests me about this project is that it’s a form of extreme rpg/fan fiction. They’re taking the raw materials of the world of Leviathan and building it into a digital environment that’s both interactive and useful for telling extended stories, often with different characters, altered timelines, and crazy new beasties. For me, it fires the same brain cells as when you guys write fan fic, that sense that my and Keith’s world keeps echoing out there somewhere in other people’s brains, where those characters (and new ones) get to have more adventures.

So thanks to the students at USC and their sponsors, and to all you guys who write fan fic and generally let your imaginations roam.

Here’s my previous blogpost about the project, and the post on The Creator’s Project blog.