Libriomancer

Book Day and Blown Deadline

The UK mass market edition of Libriomancer is out today!

The folks at Del Rey UK have been absolutely lovely to work with, and I continue to be thrilled that one of my series finally has a UK edition.

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Now on to the more aggravating part. I received a very polite email earlier this week from an anthology editor, asking if I was still planning to contribute a story … seeing as how the deadline was March 1.

And there was much swearing on my part. I had committed to this a year ago, and I knew this anthology was on my list of things to write, but I had somehow gotten it in my head that the deadline was later this summer. (I think I managed to mix it up with another deadline for an anthology that has now been cancelled.)

Regardless, the editor was kind enough to give me until the end of this month to get something written and turned in.

Looking back a few days later, it was interesting to see how this screw-up on my part crashed head-on into the Depression. Being a writer is a pretty core part of my identity, and one of the things I pride myself on is making my deadlines. There’s a line in Friends where Joey snaps, “Joey doesn’t share food!”

Well, “Jim doesn’t blow deadlines!

Between feeling a bit stressed already with the novel-writing schedule and the realization that I’d messed up, my mood for the day went down like a level 2 thief who lost initiative against a Beholder. The fact that I had also gotten stuck on the novel just made it worse. Look — two different sources of writing stress at once! Oh, joy!

The up side is that I recognized what was happening, and I knew — intellectually — that I was overreacting. Not that I’m okay with blowing deadlines, but it wasn’t the end of the world, and the editor was very cool about it. It wasn’t enough to drag myself out of that slump, but I think it kept me from getting as deeply bogged down by it as I would have a few years back.

I’m not asking for comfort here. I know I’m far from the only writer to ever miss a deadline. I know it’s unreasonable and unfair and egotistical to expect perfection from myself when I wouldn’t dream of holding anyone else to that kind of standard. And I know the best thing to do at this point is let it go and start working on the story.

Which, for the most part, I think I’ve been able to do. It took several days, but I sorted out the novel chapter I was stuck on, and I started brainstorming story ideas for the anthology. I added the new deadline to my To Do List in HabitRPG. And I woke up this morning without the ghost of that Beholder following me around, zapping me with its eyestalk-beams of, “OMG I suck!!!”

It’s still hitting me with various minor eyestalk-beams of life stress, but I’ve got the hit points and saving throws to deal with those. And I’m back in a space where I can enjoy the fact that the new edition of my book is coming out, and people are talking about it and saying mostly good things.

Giveaway: Five Copies of Libriomancer (Audio Book)

ETA: The contest is now closed. The five winners, picked at random, are:

  • huit
  • Ralph Seibel
  • pawdua
  • slhuang
  • Jonathan Wessner

I’ll be emailing you your download code and instructions for getting your audio book. Thanks to everyone who entered!

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As my last official bloggery act of 2013, I’m giving away five copies of Libriomancer [Amazon | B&N | Mysterious Galaxy] – the audio book from Audible.com. My only request is that if you’re one of the five winners, you post a review somewhere when you’re done listening.

To enter, leave a comment talking about the best book you read in 2013. Make sure I have a way to contact you. I’ll draw five winners at random in a week or so.

Winners will receive a code to download the book from Audible. And since there’s no shipping costs, that means there are no geographic restrictions on who can enter.

Please spread the word, and start out the new year with a new book to listen to!

#SFWAPro

Two Libriomancer Giveaways

Tor.com is giving away 10 copies of Libriomancer [Amazon | B&N | Mysterious Galaxy]. All you have to do is comment to enter. They’ll be picking the winners after 12:00 (Eastern Time) on September 3.

Why? Because Tor.com is just awesome that way.

(And can I just say thank you to everyone who said such nice things about me and the book in the comments? Skimming through those was a wonderful way to start the weekend.)

The Tor.com giveaway is limited to the U.S. and Canada. Having paid for overseas shipping on books before, I can totally understand this. Often the postage is significantly more expensive than the book itself, which is frustrating.

But I also know some people have been disappointed at not being able to enter. Which is why I’m putting an 11th copy of the book up for grabs. Leave a comment to enter, and I’ll draw a winner at random some time after lunch on September 3.

There’s one rule. Only people who live outside of the U.S. and Canada are eligible to enter :-)

ETA: Congrats to jessikast, chosen by the Oracle of Random Numberness to receive a signed copy of Libriomancer! My thanks to everyone who entered, and thanks again to Tor.com for their giveaway.

Libriomancy in the UK and a Westland, MI Appearance

Today is the release day for the UK edition of Libriomancer!

This is my first UK release, and I’m thrilled with everything Del Rey UK has done, particularly the gorgeous cover.

For those of you who might have been running into territorial issues, this also means you should be able to get the e-book edition in UK territories now.

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Tonight I’ll be at the Westland Public Library in Westland, Michigan. From 7 – 8 p.m., I’ll be talking about sexism and SF/F cover art. Assuming no technical glitches, there will be pictures. And almost certainly poses as well. So if you’re in the area, stop by and say hello!

Post-Release Nap Time

Yesterday was exciting, overwhelming, draining, marvelous, exhausting, and gratifying. Thank you so much to everyone for your support, support that came across in so many ways. There were several times yesterday I actually got choked up reading some of the things people were saying and doing.

Like Mindy Klasky‘s comment that, “The final chapter of CODEX (no, I’m not going to spoil it for you) actually left me with a real, physical chill.” Or everyone who came out to Schuler Books last night for the launch. Or friends who loaned me their blog platforms to talk about the book.

I’m happy and a little dazed today, but there are some things I needed to share.

BOOK GIVEAWAYS:

Two wonderful friends are hosting contests to win an autographed, personalized copy of Codex Born [Amazon | B&N | Mysterious Galaxy].

  1. Seanan McGuire – Leave a comment naming the first book that changed your life, and you’re entered to win.
  2. Elizabeth Bear – Create a humorous book macro about either my books or hers. (I really want to see what people come up with for this one!)

KINDLE AVAILABILITY:

Some people noted that the e-books weren’t available outside the U.S. Unfortunately, this is not something I have control over. It’s a territorial issue, meaning the e-books are only available to U.S. mailing addresses.

The U.K. edition of Libriomancer will be coming out in two weeks, so that e-book should be available then.

As much as I’d love for everyone, everywhere to be able to give me money buy the books, I’m afraid this one is out of my hands.

That said, the U.S. e-book of Libriomancer has dropped to $7.99 to match the mass market paperback price.

VIDEO SILLINESS:

Over on Facebook, DAW has posted two videos I did when I was in New  York earlier this year.

  • Video One: In which I chat about Codex Born.
  • Video Two: Talking about cover poses.
  • Video Three: I don’t know, but I’m told it will be very silly, and may include random comments about Anton Strout. This one will be posted once Video Two gets 200 likes on Facebook.
  • Romantic Times also did a video interview with me at BEA, which was a lot of fun.

I’m sure there’s more I should be mentioning, but this is all my brain had room for.

And don’t worry. As I get through this week, the blog will shift back to its normal routine of randomly yelling at clouds.

Codex Born is Out Today

Today marks the official release date for Codex Born and the mass market paperback of Libriomancer!

Codex is my ninth fantasy novel with DAW, so being an experienced, even jaded author, I am naturally not going to be spending the entire day freaking out and checking Amazon rankings and bouncing uncontrollably and flailing about like a muppet in a paint-mixing machine. (And if you believe that…)

My thanks to everyone who read and reviewed the first book, who pre-ordered this one, who offered support and encouragement, spread the word about the books, and just generally made my world a better place.

I’ve got two events scheduled for this week if you’re interested.

  • Tonight (August 6), I’m at Schuler Books in Eastwood from 7 – 8:30.
  • Saturday (August 10), I’ll be at Kazoo Books (Parkview Location) in Kalamazoo starting at 2 p.m.

BLURB OF AWESOMENESS: You know, a number of people have gotten blurbs from bestselling author and former SFWA president John Scalzi. But how many authors can boast something like THIS?

“This is the perfect follow up to Libriomancer. It has more magic, more action and more backstory.  And I love love love the Lena diaries!!!”

-Kristine Scalzi

VIDEO JIM: When I was in New York earlier this year, we filmed a promotional video at the Penguin/DAW offices. They’ve posted the first video over on the DAW Books Facebook page, along with a note that if it gets 100 likes, they’ll move on to videos 2 and 3, which get a bit … sillier.

LINKS TO STUFF:

  • The Big Idea – A guest post at John Scalzi’s place, talking about the character of Lena Greenwood.
  • My Favorite Bit – In which Mary Robinette Kowal lets me share a bit more about Lena, including one of my favorite pieces from Lena’s backstory snippets.
  • Tell Me – A guest post at Jennifer Brozek’s blog, talking about Isaac’s love of books and magic.
  • Literary Escapism has an exclusive excerpt from the book, showcasing one of the odder fight scenes :-)

BUY STUFF (If you’re so inclined…)

Libriomancer

Codex Born

OTHER STUFF:

Carrie S. at Smart Bitches, Trashy Books has a lovely new review of Codex Born.

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Stay tuned for more, including a few book giveaways!

#SFWApro

Giving Away a Pair of Libriomancers

Both DAW and Del Rey UK sent me author copies of Libriomancer [Amazon | B&N | Mysterious Galaxy] this week, which is a wonderful thing. Except now I find myself with more books taking up space. I figure the best thing to do is get rid of a couple, and I was hoping y’all could help me out with that!

I’ll be heading off for vacation next week, but when I get back, I’ll give away one each of the UK edition (trade paperback) and the DAW mass market release. Crocheted Smudge will be keeping guard over the books in the meantime.

If you’re interested, leave a comment telling me where you’d go on vacation if you could go absolutely anywhere, real or imagined. Narnia, Neverland, North Dakota, it doesn’t matter.

When I get home, I’ll pick two commenters at random and mail each of them an autographed copy of the book.

Anyone can enter. One entry per person, etc, etc. I’ll grab comments off of the blog, LJ, Goodreads, and the rest of the places this thing is mirrored.

Three weeks and counting until Book Day! #SFWApro

Book Giveaway: Goblins or Libriomancer

About two weeks ago, I received my author copies of the Science Fiction Book Club editions of Libriomancer and The Legend of Jig Dragonslayer.

This makes me happy for lots of reasons. Many of the books on my shelves came from the SFBC, back when I was younger and there was no way I could afford full-priced hardcovers. And then I found the SFBC. Five free books at sign-up? Reduced-price omnibus editions? Sweet! This is how I first discovered authors like Robert Asprin, Fred Saberhagan, Anne McCaffrey, Ursula LeGuin, even Asimov and his Foundation Trilogy.

So I thought it would be appropriate to celebrate this milestone, my first books to make it into the club, with a giveaway. And since the stress-o-meter has been running rather high lately, I’m gonna go with something happy and hopefully simple for this one.

All you have to do is leave a comment and tell me about one of the best things that happened to you in 2012.

I’ll pick one commenter at random next week and send them an autographed copy of the SFBC edition of either Libriomancer or The Legend of Jig Dragonslayer. Their choice.

This isn’t a U.S.-only contest, so anyone can enter.

Libriomancer Rant (with Spoilers)

I continue to be thrilled and grateful at how well Libriomancer [Amazon | B&N | Mysterious Galaxy] is doing. Reviews are still showing up on Amazon, Goodreads, and elsewhere, and while they’re not all five stars (and nobody would believe them if they were), the overall reaction has been both positive and encouraging.

Now, I knew when I wrote the book that there were at least two things some readers would be unhappy with, and that this would be reflected in the reviews.

I’m okay with that. I truly appreciate everyone who took the time to think and write about the book, even if you hated it. (But especially if you loved it!)

No book will work for everyone. While I’m sad to see negative reviews, and I am very sorry if you bought the book and were disappointed, I have no hard feelings about anyone posting a negative review. Nor do I have any intention of arguing with those reviewers. That way lies madness.

But I am going to rant about a specific aspect of certain reviews, not  because I want to defend the book, but because I want to talk about the attitude behind this particular criticism.

SPOILERS AHEAD

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How Isaac Met Smudge

Note: Edited to fix the link.

A while back, Literary Escapism invited me to participate in their School’s In feature, which has authors writing school-related snippets for their characters. I decided to put together a bit that showed the first time Isaac Vainio from Libriomancer met Smudge the fire-spider.

I might tweak a few details if I incorporate this into one of the Magic ex Libris books or a related short story, but the gist of that first meeting is at http://www.literaryescapism.com/30530/schools-in-jim-c-hines-isaac-vainio.

Enjoy!