www.jimchines.com will be down for a little while tonight while sff.net updates the WordPress installation for their users. I’ve also killed a few plugins that weren’t really necessary, and I’m hoping that will eliminate the occasional FastCGI Error message folks have reported. It’s certainly sped things up on the admin. interface.
Also, have a LEGO Castle Grayskull, just because. This was built by Fraslund, and you should definitely click through to see the rest. I think I even spotted the Sorceress up there…
Saturday, I took the kids to the LEGO Kids Fest in Novi. Purely for them, you understand. I was just being a good father, dutifully spending four and a half hours in a convention center full of models and hands-on displays and games and more. Because that’s just the kind of Dad I am!
It also gave me the chance to teach some Vital Life Lessons, like the proper technique for staking LEGO vampires.
We got to see the Important Cultural and Historical Figures of Our Time.
My son Jackson found a new role model.
And then there was this glimpse of Child Heaven…
All in all, a most Educational Experience for everyone.
I’ve got a few more pics, and larger versions of these, on my Flickr site.
Our internet is fixed! Just in time for me to leave the state tomorrow morning for Worldcon. I’m reposting my schedule here, mostly so I can find it this weekend when I manage to confuse myself.
8/30, 5:30 p.m., Dusable – Reading (Any requests? I’ll probably do something from Libriomancer, but I’m willing to reconsider. I read the Muppet Werewolf story at WFC a few years back, otherwise I’d do that one.)
9/1, 10:30 a.m. – Noon, Columbus IJ – The Art of the Cover Pose (Jim C. Hines, Karen Haber, Steven Vincent Johnson, Teresa Nielsen Hayden, Yanni Kuznia)
9/1, Noon – 1:30 p.m., Autograph Tables – Autographing (Charles Justiz, James Kahn, Jim C. Hines, Joan Slonczewski, Lee Martindale, Mary Robinette Kowal, Nancy Fulda, Robert Reed, Tony Pi)
9/2, 6:00 p.m. – ??? – Hugo Reception/Ceremony/Loser’s Party – In which Jim will wear … a suit! Just like a real grown-up! The ceremony begins at 8:00 p.m. Central Time. There should be live video here.
I’m looking forward to seeing everyone! If you’re a regular reader/commenter, please say hi if you have a moment! (And if your real name doesn’t match your online handle, please throw me a bone and tell me who you are. I can barely remember my own name at these things.)
I’ll probably be posting random Worldcon-related miscellany on Twitter, and maybe Facebook.
In some ways, yesterday reminds me of my wedding. There was a lot of preparation and work, and it seemed like time was simultaneously slowing to a crawl and rushing past as the day approached. And then it was here in a blur of noise and excitement, surrounded by friends and loved ones. Lots of happiness and celebration (and yes, maybe even some dancing). Then you blink and it’s all over.
Here are just some of the things that happened yesterday…
Mighty Axes and Beer-Soaked Beards – This has nothing to do with Libriomancer, but it also went live yesterday. This is an essay I wrote for Apex Magazine, talking about the portrayal of dwarves in fantasy.
Bitten By Books Giveaway – I’m still answering questions in the comments, and the giveaway is open through the end of the day tomorrow.
Several other as-yet-unpublished interviews, guest blogs, and essays.
Talking to my editor about the cover for book two.
Brainstorming a title for book two. (I spent more than an hour staring at the computer last night, just jotting down random words. I also had a title feedback session on Facebook.) The possible titles I finally sent my editor are: CODEX BORN, CODEX BOUND, or CODEX UNBOUND. We’ll see what she thinks.
Chatting with Carol Monda, who will be doing the narration for the audio books of the princess series. (Did I make that announcement here? I don’t think I did. Bad author! I know I mentioned it on Twitter and Facebook.)
The Fundraiser for Rape Crisis Centers raised more than $500 in the first 24 hours, which is wonderful! Our next goal is $750, at which point a book by Anton Strout gets added to the prizes. Thank you to everyone who’s donated and spread the word so far!
I’ll be doing a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything) tomorrow, April 13, starting at 7:00 p.m. CST. Having read some of the AMAs they’ve done with other authors, I expect this to be fun.
ARCs of Libriomancer have been spotted in the wild! Cranking up the authorial anxiety in 3…2…1…
Finally, because I haven’t done anything LEGO in a while, have a LEGO Game Boy. That’s also a Transformer. With a LEGO Tetris cartridge. That transforms into a bird, Laserbeak-style. Oh, just click the pic and check it out! This was built by Baron von Brunk.
My son has been sick this week, so it’s all been a bit of a blur of schedule-juggling and trying to keep him quiet and resting (because when the medicine kicks in, he feels better, so he promptly runs around … which stirs up the asthma/congestion nastiness). On the upside, I’ve now watched approximately six trillion episodes of the Wild Kratts, and can tell you how an owl’s fringed feathers allow it to swoop down silently, or how the basilisk lizard’s toes are fringed to help it run across water.
Yeah, fringe is in these days.
So anyway, all I’ve got this morning are some links.
“My mother had no escape route. There were no refuges she could run to; no helplines to call; no advocates to speak out for her. No one came to help, even though everyone knew what was happening behind our closed doors. The small houses in our road were close together, and every Monday morning I walked to school with a bowed head, praying that I wouldn’t run into a neighbour who had heard the weekend’s rows.”
“Indeed, an astoundingly small proportion of arguments ‘for free speech’ & ‘against censorship’ or ‘banning’ are, in fact, about free speech, censorship or banning. It is depressing to have to point out, yet again, that there is a distinction between having the legal right to say something & having the moral right not to be held accountable for what you say.”
I chatted with my editor a week or two back, and I’m hoping to get the final draft of Libriomancer finished today … which means all you get in the blog are a pair of links and some LEGO niftiness.
Link the First: Today is the last day of Pat Rothfuss’ Worldbuilders fundraiser, which has raised more than a quarter of a million dollars this year. The list of signed books and other prizes is like Santa smashed open the pinata of fandom, and an endless waterfall of awesomeness began pouring out.
Link the Second: The Con or Bust auction, which helps fans of color/non-white fans attend SFF conventions, begins on February 11 at 12:01 EST. Details here.
Finally, I present to you the U. S. S. Reliant, in LEGO. (In the Mutara nebula, no less!) The only thing that could make this better would be a minifig of Ricardo Montalban holding a cute little plastic Ceti eel. This was built by ChristerNyberg, aka Myko. Click here or on the pic for the full photo set.
A friend asked me about how I balance writing, blogging, family, and everything else in my schedule. In part, I do this by trying to prepare blog posts over the weekend. But then you get weekends where there’s an ice cream/dodge ball event for my son, then a day-and-a-half karate workshop, and then the joys of pushing our minivan out of a snowy ditch. (Everyone’s fine, and the van is undamaged.)
So instead of the book review or the guest blog post or anything else I had planned, y’all get a few bullet points instead, ’cause that’s all the brain I had left.
Galactic Suburbia just announced the and winner of the first Galactic Suburbia Award, “for activism and/ or communication that advances the feminist conversation in the field of speculative fiction in 2011.” I’m honored to be among the honorees. (If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you should probably be reading most or all of the folks listed.) Congratulations to winner Nicola Griffith. You can listen to the podcast here.
Every time I go to a karate workshop, I’m struck again by how much karate and writing have in common. This weekend, we were talking about the need for an outside perspective, someone who can see what we’re doing and help us to refine our techniques, because just practicing in front of a mirror isn’t enough. And this is why writers have editors… (More thoughts on the parallels later. Maybe.)
Blurbs are hard. I’m struggling to come up with a blurb for Jaime Lee Moyer‘s novel Delia’s Shadow when what I really want to do is write a review. (I’ll probably write a review anyway.) Do you think the publisher would just give me a full page or two to talk about the book?
Finally, have some LEGO Quiddich. This set was part of Brickvention in Melbourne. It was built by Jennie Sasson, and the photo is by Shannon Ocean. Click the pic for a larger view, or here for a second shot of the match (with thestrals!)