Writing boot camps are workshops where you live for a week (or several) and focus completely on the written word. It’s a very intense experience, one that can change your writing style, your relationship to books, and even your life. Some famous camps like Clarion list many famous writers as their alums.
The most well-known SF and fantasy writing camp for teenagers is called Alpha, and takes place every July in Pittsburgh. It’s ten days altogether (July 10-19 this year) including eight days of workshops and two days of attending Confluence a literary sf convention nearby. You have to be age 14 to 19 to attend.
I’ve blogged about Alpha before, but this year, I willl be teaching there, along with Tamora Pierce and Theodora Goss. If you want to apply, submissions are open now.
To quote Alpha:
We’re looking for enthusiastic, talented young writers who have a strong interest in science fiction, fantasy and/or horror and a passion for writing. Students from anywhere in the world are welcome. In the past, students have attended Alpha from Canada, the United Kingdom, all over the United States, and even as far away as New Zealand.
Learn about writing and publishing. Meet other teens who share your interest in writing speculative fiction. Talk about short stories, novels, and films. Have your submission story critiqued. Brainstorm new story ideas, write a first draft, receive feedback, and rewrite. Attend readings by the authors. Do a public reading. Learn about submitting for publication, and send off your story at our manuscript mailing party.
2013 will be Alpha’s twelfth year. Previous attendees have placed in the Dell Magazines Award and Writers of the Future contests, and have sold stories to Clarkesworld, Strange Horizons, Fantasy Magazine, Daily Science Fiction, Cicada, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet, Nature Futures, Pseudopod and more.
Workshop tuition is $1100 and includes all workshop-related costs, but does not include transportation to and from Pittsburgh, or hotel/meals at the Confluence Convention. A limited pool of scholarship funding is available for students in need of financial aid.
Here are some testimonials from previous students.
I hope I’ll be seeing some of you there! It’ll be great to meet you in person and talk about writing for a few days.
(Also: I will be more blogging soon, including some Uglies movie news.)
UPDATE This meet-up went from 7PM-8:30PM US Eastern time, 10AM-11:30AM Sydney time, October 20-21, 2012.
You can click here to read all the questions and cross-talk, or you can just read my answers below. (Sorry for the slapdash formatting. I was typing pretty fast.)
Here’s a question! What color are Deryns eyes?
Hmm. They’re blue, right?
I’d like to know any tips you have on approaching edits/revisions.
1) Read your work out loud, even to yourself.
2) Let someone else read it and have them tell you the story. In other words, test to see how well they understand it.
3) Add zombies!
Also, Scott, do you know you are awesome?xp
Like most people, some days I do, some days i don’t.
But Justine chimes in: “Yes, he really does know he’s awesome. Don’t be worried about that.”
Ummm….what’s up with this new book you briefly mentioned a few blog posts ago?
I’m about 50,000 words into it, having just rewritten the first few chapters. It’s two novels interlaced with each other, kind of like the way Peeps had a non-fiction book interlaced with it.
Scott! ? I begged my way out of dinner with my grandparents for this ?
They will forgive you. Protip: Grandparents always do.
Brazil is looking foward to meet you in November. Are you going to just be only signing books or are you preparing something else?
I’m doing some speaking about Leviathan. With slides!
So there will be a tour soon? ?
Not till my next book comes out. Brazil is just now getting Leviathan (and Zombies vs. Unicorns) so Justine and I are going down there.
Also, what’;s the scoop on Shay’s Story 2?
Comes out Dec 6, 2012. Six weeks-ish!
Any hints as to upcoming books? You haven’t been very active in terms of publishing since Goliath.
Yes, I have been lazy. Taking a brain-break, kind of.
Coming to DC anytime soon, Scott-la?
Also, can you give us any more details on the possible Midnighters TV show??? (I seriously like flipped out when I saw that post. I think my mother is a little worried with my sanity ?)
I don’t really know much. But I will blog when I do. I have started watching Chuck (those guys’ latest show) and it’s pretty good and quite funny.
Who are you voting for in the upcoming election?
Obama. (We have free healthcare for all citizens and residents down here in Australia, and it works much better than the US system.)
In addition to finishing your series of graphic novels, what other writing do you plan on doing?
See above! (The two interlaced novels.)
1) Do you remember me/recognize my name? We’ve made contact a couple of times before…If you say yes I’ll die, if no, I understand ?
I remember you all! (Well, more than you’d think.)
2) Although I know that some authors hate fanfic, you obviously don’t so will you read mine if I send it to you when I’m done? PLEASE IT IS SO MUCH BETTER THAN MOST AND IS LIKE NOTHING YOU’VE EVER READ!!!!! (Although it’s not slash, your favorite apparently. Sorry…)
Who said slash was my favorite?? (It’s always interesting, though.) But sorry I hardy have time to read the books I’m supposed to blurb.
3) Did you know that you contradict you own rule regrading wa and la? Shay says “Hey Skinny-wa” to Tally during the ice rink scene in Pretties. I can’t find the page number because I don’t have Pretties now, but I swear it’s true.
Whenever stuff like that happens, the answer is: BRAIN LESIONS.
Do you have any theories as to why it seems that most YA authors lean more towards the left, politically speaking? (for instance, you, john green, cassandra clare…)
I think artists in general lean toward the left. thanks to a tendency to see the world from many points of view, rather than the U-S-A, U-S-A point of view. (A cartoonish way to say it, but I’m in a hurry here.)
Here’s a question.. How did you get the “different verison” of the WW1 idea?
Do you like Doctor Who?
It’s not really a thing for me. I’ve only watched one or two eps in my whole life. (One really old, one new.)
Im trying to write a steampunk comic book, and so do you have any tips for writing an awesome steampunk story?
Steampunk thrives on lots of research. Learn about Victorian era science!
Bluebells and Roses my favorite bunny-loving member wanted me to ask you what your favorite kind of bagel is?
EVERYTHING. (Or garlic.)
What is Hoffman’s first name? He is awesome, but I don’t know what his name is!
Um, that’s in the book, right? (I never know this stuff.)
Also, do you like Legend of Korra?
IT IS THE BEST.
SCOTT-LA DUDE BRO GUY. BOXERS OR BRIEFS?
Recently changed to briefs.
Also, me and my boyfriend are planning on getting married in Germany (where he‘s from). Would you like to attend our wedding?
THAT MIGHT BE WEIRD.
What’s fitzroys first name? And if you hadn’t decided, can it be Harold?
It’s Robert, because he’s named after the captain of the Beagle, the ship Charles Darwin traveled on.
1) Did you ever figure out EXACTLY how fabrication worked? As in, the how the DNA was extracted, modified, and then reinserted?
2) If you did, could you explain the process to me?
3) Do all fabs come from eggs, or just the small ones like lorises? What about the larger ones, like sniffers and the Leviathan?
They all come from eggs. Some eggs are wicked big.
4) Do Darwin’s Laws of Fabrication apply to all Darwinist countries or just Britain? In other words, is it possible for, say, America, or Russia, or even Japan to create fabricated humans now that the war has “gotten real”, so to speak?
That would totally make good fan fic.
5) Regarding Uglies; any reason you chose Seattle as the Rusty Ruins?
Was LA, but then global warming made me have to move it north to keep the climate right. Plus, there’s good architecture in Seattle.
6) Have you checked out the Pretties RP I’ve been doing on here? (Probably won’t ask that but I want to XD)
No. Sounds cool, though.
7) What would be the best way to take out a Special OTHER than the electrofied arrow trick in Specials? (Gas, high powered rifles, rockets, direct impact from a moving vehicle, etc)
Irony is always the best weapon against facism.
Favorite historic time period?
Twenty years from now.
As everyone else is probably dying and wanting to know, what can you tell us on the progress of the Uglies movie? The last update we heard was that a draft of the script was being turned in at the time The Hunger Games had been released (:
That is also the last I heard. BUT there will be an image from the visual effects lab involved (just a trial balloon) released soon.
Do you like David Bowie, Pink Floyd or Queen?
Bowie tons, Queen some, Floyd not so much,
Also, what’s Alek and Deryn’s birthdays/what season were they born in?
Argh I don’t know. But probably not between early June and Late December, or we would have seen them have a party.
I’m curious, was this an oversight on your and your editor’s part, or were Zane and Tally just a bit misinformed and got lucky when the metal got heated enough to become pliable?
Yeah, I think the whole plan was fairly pretty-minded, but they managed to make them pliable. Also: BRAIN-LESIONS.
How did you get your book published? Did you just summit the manuscript to a publisher or did you get an agent?
Got an agent first. This is always best. An agent knows which specific editor at a pub comany will like your book. If you send it in yourself, it just goes to a random editor. For example, if your book is abotu a space cat who solves crimes, your agent will know that Editor X owns five cats, and will read any book with cats in it with great enthusiasm. That’s why agents mostly live in NYC, so they can have lunch and find out who likes, cats.
scott how often do you spy on us? ?
On the WesterForum, very rarely. In real life, only when you’re outside.
Ps… do you remember that one time with that email I sent you with the news story? That stil makes me laugh
This I do not remember. SORRY.
If you could live in any era besides the current, which would it be?
Scott, what makes you decide between titling your chapters, numbering them or both? what are the benefits for each?
Chapter titles are hard, but they’re a good way to create anticipation. (A chapter called, “A Mysterious Explosion” will be read with a certain amount of anxiety.) However, a surprosing number of readers don’t look at chapter titles.
Chapter numbers are good for readers to refer to when talking about your books to each other.
Another question: Do you like the idea of Volger and Barlow being together?
I think it is inevitable that people will ship them, even though Barlow is married. They do match each other very well.
Will you be coming to Vic, Australia any time in the next 12 months?
I was just there for a wedding. But for an event, I’m not sure. I am doing the Adelaide Writer’s Festival in March, though.
What is your view on cliches in writing and how to avoid them (if they’re avoidable at all?)
As I said above, reading your work aloud will make the cliches (and other crappinnesses) more obvious to you.
If you could choose…..which Disney movie would you love to be a character in?
Anything where I can fly. So that’s probably Aladdin, or I have to be Mary Poppins.
Ok Well I just got a boyfriend Friday(<3), I am 14, how old were you when you got your first Girlfriend/(I don’t know if you are/were bisexual/bicurious when you were younger so)Boyfriend?
Congrats! My first serious gf was when I was . . . 15? But there were all these non-serious girlfriends before that. I was pretty crap at defining things until, like, age 27.
If you come to New York (like the Albany area) and I came to a real life meet-up would you rather me wear my “Special Circumstances” t-shirt or “Free Hugs” t-shirt? ?
1) Which series of books are you most satisfied with?
The Leviathan series. Usually the most recent books please me most. (Just as I’m sure your parents like the youngest child in your family best.) ((HAHA JUST KIDDING)) (((Kind of.)))
2) Is/was it difficult writing the point of view from the opposite gender?
Not really. I think teenage girls think more about what they’re feeling than teenage boys, so it’s kind of easier to write from their POV, regardless of my own gender.
Why did you choose Clankers and Darwinists; why not another thing?
WHAT OTHER THING IS THERE? WWI was kind of collision between metal and flesh (first war with tanks, etc.) so I wanted to make that more literal.
Leivathan is quite different than Uglies series,why did you prefer that subject?
I LIKE ZEE AIRSHIPS.
Are you coming to Michigan or Ohio any time soon? You did once in the fall of 2010, which was an abnormally cold fall/winter and it’s not always like that so don’t be afraid to come back!
No US tours for a while. I haz no books out.
Do people ever say anything rude to you about you being a writer?
In person? Usually not. But concerned adults write me all the time about whatever in my books. (Cutting in Uglies, alcohol in Uglies, the fact that pipe smoking is MENTIONED BRIEFLY in Leviathan, evolution being discussed. Apparently you are all VERY IMPRESSIONABLE.)
I don’t have any questions, but I just wanted to say hi.
BACk AT YOU.
Will you make a Europe tour?
Don’t know. No plans at the moment, alas.
When Behemoth will be finished in Turkey???
It isn’t yet? Hmm. Maybe the publisher is concerned about the Armenian heroine. You should write them and ask.
My brother just asked me to ask you if Deryn and Alek ever went back to Turkey or Japan.
Definitely. They travel the world solving things!
Scott, I always felt that Shay was maybe a little bit in love with Tally. Do you think that’s true?
Pretty much. Robin Wasserman’s essay in Mind-Rain is pretty good on this theory.
Will you ever come to Canada? Like, Ottawa or Toronto?
I did a few years ago. Sorry I’ve only gone to Vancouver lately.
You live near Ohio/Michigan Luna? I didn’t know.
I live in NYC and Sydney.
Do you like haunted houses?
Never been in one.
Does Dr. Cable have black hair or really dark brown hair? Or is she blonde?
I THINK IT IS DARK.
Why does Lilit call Nene the Turkish word for “grandmother” if their family are Armenians?
It’s also used in Armenian communities in Turkey.
- How important is religion in the Leviathan universe with regard to the Clanker/Darwinist thing? Is it a general rule of thumb that Clankers = Catholics & Muslims and Darwinists = Protestants?
There’s probably a loose correlation, yeah. But not a rule. (I mean, the Russians are more Catholic than not, and they’re Darwinists.)
- Do you know if the Netherlands is Clanker or Darwinist?
Hmm. I’d have to think about that.
- And finally, do you know if the Russian Revolution happens in the Leviathan universe?
It does not! But hopefully they became a nice democracy at some point.
- Oh, and properly finally, is there a chance you might be doing some kind of UK/European tour at some point in the future ever?
No plans. (The answer to all tour questions from now on is “I don’t know and no tours are planned.”)
Any suggestion on how to get a YA book published?
Write a really good story! And take all the advice on my writing advice category.
1. why did you come up with a romance with zane in pretties?
That was an accident. I just had him as kind of an interesting character, and then sparks flew between them.
3. is there going to be an uglies movie?
Also, if the Midnighter‘s TV show does become a reality, what song(s) would you like to play during the opening/ closing credits?
Hmm. THIS IS A GREAT QUESTION AND I DON’T KNOW.
Heading down to New Zealand any time soon?
Argh no more tour quessies answered, but Justine and I MIGHT go to that Aukland festival in the next two years.
I know this question might be a little annoying, but do Alek and Deryn get married after the series ends?
Another question! When did the Clanker vs. Darwinist thing first emerge in the Leviathan universe? Does it go way back, or is pretty new?
It is my thing!
Scott-la, have you seen the show Revolution? If so, what are your thoughts on it?
I haven’t watched it yet. TV shows in post-breakdown worlds always seem cheesy to me, and I am afraid it will suck.
OUt of all the places that you’ve visited on tours…..which has been your favourite?
Bologna, Italy, BECAUSE OF THE TRUFFLES.
What do you think about Slender Man?
WHAT IS THIS???
Scott-la, are you a nerdfighter?
John and Hank are pals, but I don’t watch their videos. So I guess not.
Also, do you ship Borra or Makorra?
Strangely, I have no opinion on this. I just want to be Korra’s best friend for ever and ever.
Leviathan: The Movie……could it ever be a possibility?
A certain big movie star wants to make it but we can never guess the future.
Is Volger and his mustache behind the “I <3 Mustache” movement?
He planted the seeds long ago.
Do you follow any sports? If so, what sports.
Basketball and cricket. GO FEVER.
Scott: I named my puppy (Zane) after your book character (and a friend we know..) anywho… He turned out to be quite the handful. In case you were wondering, Australian Shepherd are a lot of work
All pets are work, because all relationships are work! This is the truth that they teach us.
How did you come up with the Wa and La thing anyway?
Based it on Japanese name suffixes. There’s a post on my blog about it somewhere. (Search on “suffix”.)
I was wondering if you had any advise for an aspiring actor/writer with confidence issues?
Hang out with people who make you feel good about yourself. Avoid the opposite.
Someone should name a dog “Smoke”
So did Dr. Cable officially start Special Circumstances in her city?
Nope. It had been around for a while, and she rose through the ranks and made it even moreso.
What your new book is about?
SECRET! But half of it’s a paranormal romance.
Crap so even elephantines come from eggs….
Scott-la as caring human being, I want to know–how are you doing today?
Slightly hungover from dinner party with Isobel Carmody last night. But enjoying you guys.
Do you think Alek and Deryn were annoying as little kids?
Deryn more than Alek.
What inspires you??
How cool the world is.
How do you get an agent?
There are many books and websites about this! (And always check out Writer Beware.)
Do you like Iron Man?
I loved the comics when I was little. The first movie was good. Not exactly waiting with baited breath for the next, though.
Has anyone offered to make a Risen Empire movie?
It comes up occasionally, but no one’s ever optioned it.(But thanks!)
Did you have any fictional girlfriends as a child? (I have 27 and a half fictional boyfriends- including Alek, Davd, and Zane)
Hmm. I must have. There was a cartoon about Aladdin and there was a really cute girl in it. This is as far as my memory goes.
How do you feel about being in the “Steampunk genre”? Are you into the steampunk subculture? If so, what do you like about it?
There’s lots of really interesting discussions about colonialism, race, and science in sp culture, and I also like people making their own costumes from scratch. (That is, not based on a particular character. In sp, people tend to roll their own.)
Do you think that, on their way to Switzerland, Alek and his men played roadtrip-like games to pass the time?
Hmm. I think they did tutoring things, like fencing lessons.
Uglies’s Story is going to be realease in somewhere else outside EUA?
I don’t think so. No translations have sold.
Do you like fan fiction that is really crazy and off the wall?
you said you spent part of your time in New York. out of sheer curiosity, what part? i hope this isn’t too stalker-ish…
1) please co-write something with Brandon Mull. he’s pretty cool.
I actually haven’t read him. And I am not well-built for collaboration.
2) something about younger adolescent children? maybe 13 year olds?
Hmm. Middle grade is really hard for me, for some reason.
If you could live in any of the universes you created, which one and why?
About how often do quotes from reviews you write appear on the books?
I blurb two or three books a year. (Out of 20 or so that I’m sent.)
Also Leviathan was nominated for the South Carolina Young Adult book award a few years ago. Congrats.
Also, which do you like better, Batman, Spiderman, or Superman?
Spider. Bat. Super. In that order. (And Spider-man has a hyphen!)
What’s your favourite David Bowie album. Mine’s a tie between Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and Station to Station.
YOU ARE CORRECT IN THIS ASSESSMENT OF BOWIE’S WORK. (Probably Station to Station just wins.)
AGH yes I was wondering where in NYC scott lived so I can stalk him…
As a writer do you find it flattering that people have a lot of interest seeing your work being brought to a visual platform (tv, movies)?
I’m all about the money.
ON THAT NOTE! DC or Marvel??
Grew up Marvel, but adulthood has leaned toward DC.
Can I make up Hoffman’s first name?
Also, Scott, you’re awesome for taking time to do the meet ups!
You are all awesome for your enthusiasm!
Do you go on tumblr?
I do not myself tumbl. But I do look at others’.
Também sou brasileira, Cristina. Se precisar de ajuda, é só falar.
If I want to become a writer do I have to leave my nice comfortable Winter wonderland/God forsaking land where poplar bears dwell and move to NY or some big city?
No. Writers can live everywhere. It’s our superpower.
WAS HOFFMAN CALLED HOFFMAN BECAUSE OF FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST??
And I think that you should have justine get on and do a meetup with you sometime… ? (And hey, maybe you could just make it an author party… and invite other epic peeps too…… Just a thought
Hmm. Maybe next time she has a book out.
Scott I know from writing and reading YA books that it’s really hard to make cool human main characters, WHY IS THIS?! And you seem to have gotten better that it Deryn> Tally how did you manage to do this?
This is the mystery of fictional people. HOW ARE THEY SO COOL THEY AREN’T EVEN REAL?
What is working for the Society like?
Lousy pay, but quite exciting.
Also, new book: 1 protagonist, 2, or eight, and are they boys/girls/aliens of indeterminate gender?
Two protags, both female.
And even if you are satisfied more with Leviathan, I just want to say that Uglies is better in every way…
THIS IS YOUR RIGHT AS A READER.
Inspiration to write in the first place?
My family are good storytellers.
HE PROBABLY KNOWS WHAT MY TUMBLR IS (i’m so so so sorry scott if so)
Now I will go look for it.
There’s an interview that you said your new book would be a meta-paranormal romance. Is that right? What does it means?
YOU WILL HAVE TO GUESS FOR NOW.
1. how did you come up with a relationship with zane in pretties
Like I said, it was an accident.
2. is there going to be an uglies movie???
THIS IS A POSSIBILITY.
How did you get the idea to have Dr Barlow as a character in the Leviathan series?
I always liked her as a real historical person.
What would Alek and Deryn think about Legend of Korra if they ever watched it?
Deryn would love it. Alek would be, all, wha?
Also, *gives you a piece of virtual strawberry rhubarb pie*
So what did Lilit do after Goliath? (Meet Adela and fall in love is my best guess.)
I think the two of them work for the Zoological Society.
Why did u decide to give David a complex haircut in the manga? He’s never been to a barber so shouldn’t he have kind of crazy person hair?
That haricut was supposed to look a bit hand-done. Like with a knife.
Dr. Barlow mentions on a number of occasions that she thinks the lorises are “defective” in the books. Was this her attempt at humour, or did she actually imagine them differently? If so, how different were her expectations for them?
She didn’t expect Bovril to bond to two people, because that’s only supposed to happen if the two people are in love. BUT SHE DIDN’T FIGURE OUT WHAT IT MEANT.
Where did you get your ideas for the Risen Empire?
From all the space operas ever.
Did Volger ever have a girlfriend?
This is unclear. He seems to be a fairly confirmed bachelor.
Right now I sent a lot of mails to the Publisher in Turkey
Let me know what they say!
I’d like to know what dystopian books inspired you.
Hmm. Movies like Mad Max, and books like 1984. And all the sf ever.
hey scott, it is against copyright laws if i were to make a t-shirt with a picture from one of the Leviathan books on? like a screen-printed over the internet one? i totally understand if it’s not, but if that’s the case, you should make official ones for us :3
It’s kind of against copyright law but if you only make 1 they will not arrest you.
Which vegetable would you rather be, a carrot or a zucchini?
Carrot. Because they’re smarter than zucchini and easier to spell.
My friend Cate would like to know what became of Jaspert Sharp? If you’re not too overwhelmed with questions that is.
He served his country well and became the captain of an airbeast one day. The end.
Oh, also, why do none of your book pairings say ‘i love you’ to each other? (off the top of my head, at least, I can’t remember any mutual exchange of the words.)
Doesn’t Zane say it to Tally? (But she doesn’t say it back, is what you mean.) That’s true. Maybe it’s more interesting that way?
Do you have an easier time coming up with main or side characters?
Side characters are much easier. They can be funny, without carrying all the weight. (Like being a cool uncle is easier than being a cool parent.)
everybody who ships adelit JOIN HANDS
*joins prayer circle*
do you like tea? if so what’s your favorite kind?
Chamomile and hibiscus.
The author of Percy Jackson said you need a well paying side job if you want to be a writer, is that true for the world or just in the U.S?
Everywhere. (Although Rick clearly does not need a side job.)
Scott, you’re awesome. Just saying. Also, what is your favorite Crime/mystery show?
Um, Fringe. (Is usually pretty crimey.)
Does anyone else ship Tazza and a random hydrogen sniffer?
No. No one does that.
I like the idea of Bovril and loris #2.
They are brood siblings!
What is your dream school? (doesn’t have to be a school that actually exists)
Hmm. A school where I learn all the languages every spoke, but in my sleep.
Why do you like garlic bagels so much?
Garlic is delicious. And it cures all diseases. (NOTE: GARLIC DOES NOT CURE ALL DISEASES.)
About 1 month ago you told me on Twitter that might come to Brazil soon. You told me to stay tuned. Is there something already programmed or is it just a desire of yours?
I’ll be there in late November. Sao Paulo November 24-25. Rio November 27-28. Watch my blog for more details, and these dates might slightly shift.
Thanks for answering our questions, I was texting my mom the play-by-play as she’s a big fan. (I got her to read your books hehe) I am ze winner. She says hi
Hi back at her!
THAT IT IS. GOOD NIGHT.
Okay, so it’s time to vote for the next Manual of Aeronautics art reveal. But first, my appearances at San Diego Comic Con have been finalized. There will be two signings, one panel, and two Cool Random Things. Keep reading to find out what those are.
Thursday July 12
Signing at Mysterious Galaxy Booth #1119
I’ll be signing and chatting to anyone who drops by, and there will be plenty of my books for sale. SPECIAL RANDOM THING: Mysterious Galaxy may have secret advanced copies of The Manual of Aeronautics, which you can actually buy! There will be a code word or something. (Check back here to see if this becomes a real thing, rather than a thing that didn’t really happen, because I dreamt it.)
UPDATE: Yeah, this is real. Twelve copies only. First twelve peeps in line for this signing gets to buy one each. (The code word is “WEASEL-FACE”!)
Saturday, July 14
Me having coffee with you.
That’s right. SPECIAL RANDOM THING 2 is that during Comic Con I will announce a phone number via this blog and my twitter (@scottwesterfeld). Text the name “SCOTT” to this number to be automatically entered into a contest. The winner of this contest will have coffee with me on Saturday at 4PM, at Comic Con. Or maybe instead of coffee we will saunter across the convention floor and pose with Full Metal Alchemist cosplayers. That is the sort of thing that would be fun. (I asked, and you will NOT be signed up for spam by entering this contest. But you will received a text asking you to opt in for more “news and offers.”)
UPDATE: New rules: Just go by the Simon & Schuster booth (#1138) to find out how to enter.
Sunday July 15th
I’m on a panel called: What’s Hot in YA, with Kami Garcia (Beautiful Creatures series), Tahereh Mafi (Shatter Me), Lish McBride (Necromancing The Stone), Leigh Bardugo (Shadow and Bone), Melina Marchetta (The Lumatere Chronicles), Myra McEntire (Hourglass series), James Dashner (The Maze Runner series), and moderator Nathan Bransford (Jacob Wonderbar series). After the panel is another signing:
Sunday July 15th
Autograph area AA09 in the Sails Pavilion
Signing with me will be all the people above, plus bonus guest Veronica Rossi (Under the Never Sky). My books will be for sale here too, but I can’t guarantee there will be any Manual of Aeronautics left.
And finally, if you’re in Sydney instead of San Diego, you might want to check out my wife Justine’s book launch for Team Human:
Thursday, July 12
Lvl 2, The Galeries, 500 George Street
Sydney, Australia 2000
AND NOW FOR THE VOTINGS
This will be the all-beastie extravaganza! Would you rather see . . .
1) The mighty Behemoth!
2) The fearsome spike-pooing flechette bat!
3) Or the all-knowing message lizard!?!
How do you even DECIDE such a thing when the choices are so awesomely Thompson-esque?
Oh right. You decide by voting—by number, please. And as always, feel free to use this comment thread to debate and inveigle your co-commenters.
Let the voting begin. See some of you at SDCC.
UPDATE: This chat already happened. But you can read the transcript here. It’s pretty funny, I think.
Here are some ways in which the chat may be interesting:
1) Sarah and Justine wrote the novel together in secret. They didn’t even tell their agents! (Sort of like eloping.)
2) It was the first novel either of them had collaborated on.
3) They have very different writing styles. (Sarah outlines everything. Justine wings it.)
4) They live on different continents. (Sarah was in Ireland during the writing, and Justine in NYC.)
5) And finally, the book itself is a paranormal romance, but it’s not about a girl who’s in love with the vampire. It’s about her best friend . . .
Basically, Team Human is the story what happens when your best friend falls in love, and then starts ignoring you. Except when she’s telling you in endless detail how amazing her new boyfriend is, or when she comes to cry on your shoulder when things aren’t working out. In short, TH is about how friendship can suffer when love is in the air, and about how much worse the suffering gets when the new boyfriend is a gorgeous immortal bloodsucker, and wants to turn your BFF into one too.
So we’ll probably be discussing the genre of paranormals overall, and how Sarah and Justine wanted to shake the usual formula up a bit.
But when does this chat happen?
Tonight! (Sunday, July 8)
8PM Eastern US Time
5PM on the west coast and 10AM Monday in Australia.
And here’s the official trailer:
Team Human is out now! (In both the US and Australia. w00T!)
Here’s the awesome trailer!
UPDATE: The tweet-up is over now but it went splendidly, and trended WORLDWIDE!
If you missed the tweet-up, come chat with all three of us at Figment.com on Sunday:
Sunday July 8
8PM US-ET (5PM Pacific Time, 10AM Monday AUS-ET)
We’ll be discussing what it’s like to collaborate on a novel, which should be interesting. Click here to find out more.
Okay, that’s it. See you on Friday for FAF!
Thanks to everyone for a fantastic time at Kinokuniya’s Free Comic Book Day. There was cake. I have proof:
Lots of people brought me cool fan art, which I’ll be sharing with you next Friday.
For you Sydneysiders who missed me, I’ll be appearing twice more in the next two weeks. The first one:
The Aurealis Awards
Saturday, May 12
7:30 for an 8PM start
269 Miller Street
North Sydney NSW 2060
The Aurealis Awards celebrate the achievements of Australian science fiction, fantasy and horror writers every year. Kate Forsyth with be mistress of ceremonies, and I’ll be presenting the award for Best Illustrated Book or Graphic Novel.
You can get tickets here.
And the second:
Sydney Writers Festival
A Neverending Story: Fantasy Worlds
Sunday, May 20
Me, Isobelle Carmody, Justine Larbalestier, and Joy Lawn (facilitator)
Sydney Dance 4, Pier 4/5, Hickson Road, Walsh Bay
From steampunk to the supernatural, from urban fantasies to dystopian futures, our love affair with speculative fiction is all-consuming.
Three authors who create imagined worlds explore our enduring fascination with fantasy and unpick the complexities of the genre. Isobelle Carmody, Scott Westerfeld and Justine Larbalestier talk to Joy Lawn.
Here’s the online details for this event.
And finally, here’s a little promo for my sister-in-law’s new e-book start-up, SnappyAnt. Her first app is an animated and read-out-loud iPad version of a picture book called My Mom’s the Best, by Rosie Smith, with illustrations by Bruce Whatley. You know, for Mother’s Day!
It’s all about wee baby beasties interacting with their moms, and is very cute.
Note that in Australia and UK iTunes store, it comes in its original Oz-English version: My Mum’s the Best. (Fight the power!)
You can check it out at the iTunes store.
Okay, that’s it. See you on Friday for FAFF, if not sooner.
Last April Fool’s Day I was a bit bad, revealing a fake illustration from the upcoming Goliath. But today, even though it’s getting close to April 1, I am being TOTALLY FOR REAL with a random round-up of things that reality stole from ME:
A company called Helimalibu provides flying cameras for “a variety of industries such as, Residential and Commercial Real Estate, high-level inspections for electric towers or HV lines, or for land survey and construction purposes.” The film industry is considering using cameras of this type for movie-making. And, of course, police are using flying drones in all sort of ways.
For more, read this story at FastCompany.
Aviatrixes of Yore!
That’s Amelia Earhart, aviatrix, trailblazing woman, and paragon of goggled hotness. I want that jacket.
Ganked from this story at QuiteContinental.
These paintings by Bill Pullman, a meteorological painter, attempt to recreate what the Tunguska Event in Siberia looked like to those on the ground. This is the meteor (or something) strike that leveled millions of trees and for which Nicola Tesla attempts to take credit in Goliath.
Thanks to everyone who tweeted to me about Nokia’s patent on vibrating tattoos. For those of you who missed the low-information internet storm about these tattoos, they’re skinplanted ferro-magnetic patches that respond to a device (like a phone), so you can feel a very personal buzz when you have a call/message/eBay auction to attend to.
I’m sure at some point many of us will have implanted devices to make interfacing with the internet and machines easier, but I have one problem with a ferro-magnetic tattoo. What happens if some April Fool’s Day prankster develops a “buzz broadcaster,” a device that gives everyone around them a great big vibration?
Nothing good, I’m sure.
That’s it. Have a fun April Fool’s Day, and try not to be evil.
IT IS A TIME OF SPOILAGE. A TIME OF SECRETS REVEALED.
Use the comment thread of this post to discuss Shay’s Story. And if you haven’t read it yet, GO ELSEWHERE.
I know what you’re saying. “But I’ve read the Uglies series five times. What new can I possibly learn?” Well, don’t forget that new points of view mean new information. Shay’s Story will reveal all sorts of previously unknown things!
And, as is traditional, we must always remember this comment from back in May 2006, in the Specials spoiler thread:
oh god, i read the spoiler section before i read the book. i would have read the book by now but the bookstore doesn’t have it in yet! i got the first two before the sale date. why can’t i do that now!? crap i can’t believe i read the spoiler section…crap
Let these lamentations be a warning to you. And let the spoilage begin!
1) Uglies: Shay’s Story comes out TODAY, March 6. (!!)
2) I don’t have the art for the Smoke reveal yet, but I will soon.
3) There is going to be a trailer for the graphic novel, also soon! (Not this one, a real one.)
4) I want to do a meet-up on the Forum soon, maybe a week after Shay’s Story comes out, so we can all talk about it. What time and day is good for you guys?
5) And finally, here’s a list my previous blog entries on Shay’s Story, just to whet your appetites.
Here’s how we worked together to create the manga.
An interview with Girls Read Comics Too.
A WesterForum meet-up in which I answer a LOT of questions.
And here’s, you know, the cover:
Nook owners can buy Shay’s Story by clicking here.
For iPad owners, the Shay’s Story page on iTunes is right here. It says you can read it on your iPhone, but you’d better have pretty good eyes, because it’s fixed width format. iPad is way better.
Australians wishing to shop online can get it pretty cheap from Fishpond.
Shay’s Story comes out in a week, and I had a new stop-motion app, so I thought I’d make a thing.
This is that thing:
You can also watch it bigger on YouTube!
Sorry about no FAF last week. But there will be FAF this week! And more THINGS of this nature.