I had a great time at LibertyCon this past week. I did a full AAR here, but suffice to say it rocked. You can find the full AAR here: robhowell.org/blog/?p=3117.
At LibertyCon, I did not one, but two cover reveals. You can see both in the AAR but I’ll just highlight A Hope In Hell, the thrilling conclusion to Christopher G. Nuttall’s post-apocalyptic swords and sorcery series.
This comes out on July 11th. If you haven’t read the first two books in the Heirs of Cataclysm yet, here’s the link to the series: amazon.com/dp/B0BFLWPL5N.
The other reveal was for A Lake Most Deep. This comes out on July 25th, starting a sequence of Firehall Sagas stories coming out every 5 weeks until some point in 2024.
I’m incredibly stoked about these re-releases. The writing is stronger, the art is more powerful, the maps are better, and the layout is more professional. Better in every way because I’ve learned a few things over the past decade.
One of the things I didn’t cover in the AAR were all the conversations about the Valor anthologies. I’ve not talked about how awesome Bonds of Valor has done, at least, not as much as I should have. The move sort of distracted me, but I got a number of compliments on it at LibertyCon.
I also talked to a number of writers to be a part of the next one, and while I can’t give you the full list yet, it’s as good if not better than Bonds.
LibertyCon was also the conclusion to an incredibly busy 4 months. On March 1st, I became a grandpa. Then there was FantaSci. Then we closed on the house here in Anthony. Then we did the actual move and that was something, let me tell you. Then Lilies. Then LibertyCon. Then… Then… Then…
During this time, I drove over 20,000 miles, ate way too much road food, and took a bunch of ibuprofen.
My life changed in so many ways, so many great ways, that I can’t wait to see what’s coming, but I basically have a month to stay at home before Pennsic.
Time to take a breath and just write and edit.
What I’m Listening To
We’re watching Inspector Morse on BBC. We’re going to watch all the way through it and then do Endeavor.
Quote of the Week
Happy birthday to Ian Paice, drummer of Deep Purple. I guess that means I have to quote from the song you’re never supposed to play in guitar stores…
We all came out to Montreux
On the Lake Geneva shoreline
To make records with a mobile
We didn’t have much time
Frank Zappa and the Mothers
Were at the best place around
But some stupid with a flare gun
Burned the place to the ground
– Deep Purple, Smoke on the Water
I have a Patreon where I write Old English style riddles and provide snippets of my work. You can find it here: patreon.com/rhodri2112, along with a sample riddle.
It’s Wednesday, which is about right. I need at least a few days to recover from the awesomeness that is LibertyCon. I hated missing it last year, but I suppose I made the right choice. I am still married, after all.
Anyway, before I get going into my weekend, I want to take a moment to thank all the crew at LibertyCon. Brandy Hendren is a rock star among rock stars, and her crew is the single best organized con crew out there. I deal mostly with Rich Groller (programming) Matthew Fanny (gate) because I never get a chance to go to the best con suite around (Vonn Gants and crew), the art show (Ann Robards), or the game room (Misty Kat Gutierrez-Waller). And that doesn’t count all the behind the scenes folks.
That crew is amazing, but it’s not really a surprise. We often talk about how much LibertyCon is a family, and this is the core of the family. They’ve all done the job for a while, helping their family members have a great time.
I thank them all the time, but it’s really never enough.
Anyway, I was so ready for LibertyCon that last Tuesday night I couldn’t sleep. It was like Christmas Eve, so I gave up the ghost, got up at 430am and was on the road by 5 to Murfreesboro, my stop on the way. It’s good to have friends to crash with, especially when they make chicken and mashed potatoes for a weary traveler.
I got to the hotel early on Thursday and did a bunch of work in the room before heading down to the lobby.
The lobby at the LibertyCon hotel on Thursday night is a trap. A great trap, a wonderful trap, a trap worthy of Grimtooth, but a trap nonetheless.
There are friends there I haven’t seen in at least a year, lots of them! I flitted from friend to friend, getting snatches of conversation, talking business, the past year, beer, writing, and all the other things in swirling conversations that make the Thursday night at LibertyCon one of the single most important days of the year professionally.
We closed down the bar and then went to a room party. This was an oft-used plan by many at the bar. Marriott might want to reconsider closing the bar right at midnight.
Friday was breakfast at the City Cafe. Sadly, they’re being forced to move a few blocks away. It’s a shame as it was only a block away from the hotel and it is really good.
Then I got into panels starting at 1pm. This was the Out of the Trailer Park anthologies panel led by William Joseph Roberts. He’s a really smart dude and the driving force behind Three Ravens Publishing. If you haven’t checked that company out, do so. They’re really good.
Anyway, I’m not saying I committed myself to writing a redneck version of Beowulf, but I committed myself to writing a redneck version of Beowulf for a future anthology.
After that, I was generally off until 8pm and my Author’s Alley stint from 8pm to 10pm. I was really pleased with how this went. I only sold 4 books, but I talked to a bunch of folks and that’ s a big part of why I do those slots.
More importantly, I had bought a rolling toolbox to make setup and teardown go smoothly. It holds 4 stacks of books, so about 40 or so without difficulty. It also came with a smaller case that holds promo and setup stuff like the Wandering Signature Chart and the big d20. I can bungee two racks on top and it was really easy, so that’ll be a help going forward.
I was originally scheduled to be on Author’s Alley until 11pm, but the CKP Year Ahead panel went from 9pm to 11pm, and I skipped my last hour (actually I donated it to Cedar Sanderson, who couldn’t make the con) to go do the New Mythology portion of the presentation.
And that’s where I lost my name.
I showed up to find they were mostly through the New Mythology portion and that Kacey Ezell had impersonated me. Apparently, she’s a better me than me.
So I took her tiara and tagged in. I got there in time for not one, but two cover reveals. The first was for A Hope in Hell, the conclusion to the Heirs of Cataclysm trilogy by Christopher G. Nuttall. This comes out on July 11th and it’s the post-magical-apocalypse swords and sorcery series you didn’t know you’d love but you will. The art, by the way, was done by Laercio Messias.
Then came the most exciting part of the presentation. I’m re-releasing all of my books under New Mythology Press starting with A Lake Most Deep on July 25th. This is the first of the Edwardsaga, the fantasy mystery series.
The Firehall Sagas schedule starts like this:
July 25th: A Lake Most Deep
August 29th: The Eyes of a Doll
October 3rd: Where Now the Rider
November 7th and every 5 weeks afterward for a good while, something else.
No surprise that I’m excited. These books have updated art, maps, new edits, and a better layout. Basically, I’m taking all that I’ve learned over the last decade and refreshing them. I’ve said a number of times that while I love A Lake Most Deep because I created good characters, a great setting, and a challenging mystery, I didn’t execute the writing well. No surprise there, it was my first novel. Now, however, I’m as proud of the writing as I am the story and this is true for all the rest.
Did I mention art? Here’s the other cover reveal. This art is by J. Caleb Designs, one of my favorite cover artists around. I think you can see why. It’s much the same cover as before, but it’s so much more energetic and strong.
On top of this, I’ve been pleased to get a couple of blurbs from other authors. Glen Cook, yes that Glen Cook, the one who wrote the Garrett, PI series, said A Lake Most Deep is “a damn fine read.”
Yes, my head exploded when I got that email.
Also, at LibertyCon, Larry Correia gave me a writer blurb: “Rob mixes intrigue, murder, and magic in to his own cool blend.” Plus, Dave Butler agreed to get me a blurb as well. I’m honored by their trust and hope to live up to everything they expect of me.
Back to LibertyCon. Following the CKP panel, we had a CKP YouTube internet thing. This was a hoot. I sat in the back and heckled, not that it needed my heckling to be hilarious. Check it out here: youtube.com/watch?v=x35cP0ir34M. Uhhh, not safe for work, or your ribs from laughing too hard.
Saturday started with the brunch. We had a fun table including Gary Shelton the donut god, Ann Margaret Lewis (who’s releasing her first CKP title soon), and Scott Huggins, writer of the Responsibility series.
The theme for our table was, “Dammit, Scott!!!” The banquet was set up so each table would go up in succession, with the table number drawn randomly. Scott said he had terrible luck with this sort of thing and we’d go last, so every time another table was called, we yelled, “Dammit, Scott!!!” Then Scott McIntosh-Mize got in line and we yelled it at him too. He was appropriately confused. Then they said the last table to be called would get a prize, so we yelled “Dammit, Scott!!!” when we were second to last. We may have had to wait, but we had more fun than all the other tables.
Scott’s working on book 3 in his Responsibility series right now, by the way.
At noon I had a reading with Patrick Chiles. He’s a hard SF author writing with Baen and his first reading reminded me of Inherit the Stars, at least it had the same sort of awesome puzzle from James P. Hogan. That’s still one of my favorite books, even if some of the scientific basis hasn’t entirely held up in the nearly 50 years since it came out.
For myself, I read the new first chapter of A Lake Most Deep, which is much stronger then the first chapter of Farewell, My Ugly.
Then I had another long break until panels at 7, 8, and 10pm. The first was a panel on Writing from the Perspective of a Historian. In general, I enjoyed the panel, and David B. Coe did a good job of moderating it.
I think the key thing to remember about this topic is that history doesn’t have to make sense, but fiction does. Also, there’s always another level to the history, and at some point you have to cut that off in fiction to keep the reader in the story.
Then there was another panel on history, this time writing for history, and again moderated by David B. Coe. It wasn’t an exact reply, though, as it was focused more on worldbuilding.
He asked what 3 things we start with, and my answer is that all the worldbuilding has to provide kinetic energy to the story. Hence, I start with foundational stuff like the magic system and also the ancient history that is hidden in the epic fantasy quest. Then I start with regional stuff to create trade routes, political tensions, and such. Then I mention my Wikipedia random article process to create a database of ideas for characters, places, and events.
Then came the Great Tiara Exchange of Ought-23 and me getting a new name.
On the schedule it was the Valkyries panel where a bunch of authors in The Valkyrie Protocol anthology talked about their story. Kacey Ezell introduced herself as Rob, so I took her tiara again. This, by the way, was a huge blue-stone studded tiara as opposed to the simple circlet from the previous night.
I rocked it the rest of the night.
But I’m getting ahead of myself, as the Joelle Presby introduced herself as Rob. Then Melissa Olthoff introduced herself as Rob. So I introduced myself as Kacey Joelle Olthoff to much rejoicing.
All the while wearing the tiara balanced on my head. Did I mention it didn’t fit? It was just perched there, but I never once had it fall off.
Back to the panel, which had some business moments. Marisa talked about the plan to keep writing in that world, and that a number of books were coming out along these lines, ultimately concluding with an Avengers-like book with all the characters kicking ass. I don’t have time to write a book, but Vigdis hasn’t saved her last soul.
Side note: www.irocktiaras.com is available and I might need a new website.
Following the Valkyries panel, we retired to the bar to close it down. Then went to room parties. Then we went on an excursion!
I skipped right over the part where Trisha J. Wooldridge was at her first LibertyCon with her brand new release, Shadows, Ash, and Prophecy. She seemed to have a great time and is a great addition to the CKP crew. She’s also working on book 3 in that series right now.
Here’s the cover, by the way.
She was staying at a neighboring hotel, so we formed a party amoeba and escorted her home. Then we returned to the room party.
I usually do my major night of reveling on Thursday, but apparently I was too hyped to stop. I closed out the room party, then spent time helping Nathan Balyeat edit a story. A drunk editor can be good, but he either sacrifices his editing skill or his ability to phrase things nicely. Fortunately, Nathan didn’t kill me, but I was like a director yelling, “cut, cut, cut!”
Then I realized it was 6am and I had planned to drive to Fayetteville, AR after the con.
Well, I packed my stuff up except just what I’d need and took it down to the car. Went to the breakfast buffet, which opened at 630. Then I caught a few hours of sleep to join the Kaffeeklatsch.
After that was the Four Horsemen panel and suddenly, the tables turned.
They started the presentation and were introducing all the people up on stage when they came to an empty chair. Kacey Ezell’s chair.
Yes, I jumped up and did my best Kacey impersonation. To be fair, she’s a much better me than I am of her. I apparently can’t do a soft, higher-pitched voice without doing it in Southern. Still, it was a lot of fun and most of the crowd had been to the previous panels so was in on the joke.
At that point, I got out of Dodge as quickly as I could because I was already tired. I figured if I got out early, I could stop for a nap or two, which I did. However, leaving LibertyCon is not a fast process, something I appreciate. Lots of people to hugs, lots of goodbyes, and even a homemade cookie.
The trip home wasn’t terribly eventful, though I did make a detour when I saw the weather going through the middle of Arkansas. I ended up going north around it and getting a hotel in Mountain Grove, MO instead of stopping at a friend’s house in Fayetteville. Ah, well, I got home safely.
Overall, LibertyCon was as awesome as usual, maybe even more so since I’d missed it last year. Never again, unless I can’t help it.
All the business things I’d hoped to cover got covered, and more. I got to hang out with a people I haven’t had much of a chance to before, including Patrick Chiles, Howard Andrew Jones and the Holos. I met a bunch of new folks, too.
So, can we go back next week? I already miss my family.
Lilies was great, as to be expected. Overall, weather as good as could be hoped for and a bunch of opportunities to sing. I’m rusty around a singing circle so I’m spending July practicing.
But now it’s on to LibertyCon. I left Wednesday morning at 5:07am. I intended to leave at 6am but I was so excited, I couldn’t sleep. It was like sleeping on Christmas Eve.
It’s been four years since I’ve been able to come to LibertyCon. This is such an important event for me, both professionally and sentimentally. I came here first in 2015 in order to help get a feel for how to be a pro writer. I’d never have the career I have without it. It is also one of those cons where things get done in a myriad of conversations.
Anyway, there’s a ton going on this week, so let’s get to that. Shadow, Ash, and Prophecy is Live! Get it here: amazon.com/dp/1648557732. This is book 2 in Trisha J. Wooldridge’s amazing Asian-themed epic fantasy, and focuses on the fey of her world in a battle against an evil prince.
Coming soon is A Hope In Hell. It’s the conclusion to Christopher G. Nuttall’s action-packed post apocalyptic swords and sorcery series the Heirs of Cataclysm. I’ll have a cover reveal here at LibertyCon Friday night in the CKP Year Ahead.
Two weeks after that is A Lake MostDeep, book 1 of the Firehall Sagas by yours truly. I’ll reveal that cover tomorrow night as well.
As most of you know, this is a re-release of my fantasy series. That means we’ll have a bunch of them out in sequence, including not only the 7 currently published novels but more. Much more. The Eyes of a Doll, book 2, is coming out August 29th. Where Now the Rider, book 3, is scheduled for 3 October. And something more every 5 weeks after that for a while. A long while.
Exciting times for me.
Back to the CKP Year Ahead. Not only will I have the two cover reveals, but I know Chris has a number of surprises too, so you won’t want to miss it. It starts at 9pm in CC Ballroom E on Friday night.
Alan Parson Project House of Usher. Let’s start the weekend with some Poe.
Quote of the Week
Happy birthday to one of the forefathers of my profession, born on this day in 1856. Might be time to read the Allen Quatermain adventures again. In the meantime, here’s a quote from King Solomon’s Mines.
“It is far. But there is no journey upon this earth that a man may not make if he sets his heart to it. There is nothing, Umbopa, that he cannot do, there are no mountains he may not climb, there are no deserts he cannot cross; save a mountain and a desert of which you are spared the knowledge, if love leads him and he holds his life in his hand counting it as nothing, ready to keep it or to lose it as Providence may order.”
― H. Rider Haggard, King Solomon’s Mines
I have a Patreon where I write Old English style riddles and provide snippets of my work. You can find it here: patreon.com/rhodri2112, along with a sample riddle.
Yes, there are still ten days left in September, but so much has gone on that I really need to do an AAR. Plus, October looks like it’ll be just as busy so I don’t know when I’ll get this done, and as I look back a monthly AAR sounds like a pretty good regular post.
This month started off with a huge bang when No Game For Knights came out on the 6th. This is the noir-themed science fiction and fantasy anthology edited by Larry Correia and Kacey Ezell and follows up Noir Fatale, which was also really fun.
My story in here was entitled The Incomparable Treasure, and it continues the adventures of Edward Aethelredson. If you’ve read The Eyes of a Doll, you want to read this as it follows up some of that story there.
On the 16th, The ValkyriesInitiative came out. This is an anthology in the Hit World universe edited by Marisa Wolf.
The Hit World is what I call genre gumbo. It has everything: aliens, magic, gods, myths, James Bond-style espionage and assassinations, intrigue, and if it doesn’t have it now, it will someday.
My story in here is actually in many ways like my story in No Game for Knights. It’s hardboiled and has more than a bit of noir influence. It’s about a valkyrie who’s been doing the bidding of Freya and Odin for some 1500 years now. She’s currently working a job in St. Louis and, spoiler alert, everything goes sideways.
I like putting characters into difficult positions where no choice is good, and this was one of my favorite bad situations so far.
Today, we released The Chimera Coup, which starts a new series called The Heirs of Cataclysm. This is post-apocalyptic, swords and sorcery and tech and is full of action as one would expect from Christopher G. Nuttall.
If you haven’t read Chris’s stuff before, you should. He’s got a bunch out there, including some other fantasy series, plus a bunch of great mil SF and space opera. We’re honored to have the opportunity to publish this.
Books 2 and 3 in this trilogy will come out soon, and you’re going to love how he wraps this all up.
I’ve also been a part of a number of podcasts. The Eldros Legacy crew did an interview on the 7th on Inside CKP. We did another interview with Cursed Dragon Ships on the 13th. Between those, the Dudes in Hyperspace had their NFL preview show on the 8th.
Click on the show links to check out all three of those.
Whew, that’s 4 books released and 3 podcasts recorded in 2 weeks!
But wait, there’s more! I also just got back from FenCon in the DFW Metroplex.
Larry Correia was the guest of honor, Robert E. Hampson was the science GOH, and Chuck Gannon was the toastmaster. Man, that’s a heck of a list and it drew out a ton of people. I heard, though I haven’t confirmed it, that FenCon drew almost as many people this year as it had done in the previous two pre-pandemic years combined.
Again, I’ve got no confirmation on that, but it sure seemed hopping to me. I was only on two panels, one on Indie Publishing and the CKP Look Ahead, but both were very well attended. Thanks to all who come out.
I also had constant traffic in front of my dealer’s table. I sold more than I expected, which is always nice, but I also got to really talk to a bunch of great people.
The author next to me, Tim Gilliland, was brand new. This was his first con ever, whether to sell or not. He’s in his 60s and finally getting to do what he’s always wanted to do. I predict he’ll do well, given how enthusiastic he was.
This was actually a theme, as I was aware of more people who said this was their first ever convention than I can recall at any other con. Great to see all the new blood.
But truly, it was the old blood that made this con for me. Because of the guests, there was a huge percentage of attendees who I usually see at LibertyCon. Since I missed it this year, I was ecstatic to have sort of a LibertyCon Lite. Yeah, yeah, I do realize it was probably the wise choice to be at my own wedding instead of the con, but I still missed my friends.
I had a great conversations with old and new friends, which is really the best part of cons. Selling books is great, and I love panels, but it’s the people that matter.
Among friends I had good conversations with were Larry, Rob, Chuck, Sarah Hoyt, Cedar Sanderson, Jonna Hayden, C.V. Walter, Dan Hoyt, Karl Gallagher, Sean CW Korsgaard, Mark Wandrey, Lloyd Behm, Joy Wandrey, William Alan Webb, Sandra Medlock, and Toni Weisskopf. I also met Fred Hughes and Kayla Krantz, two newish authors in the stable, plus a bunch of people like Tim Gilliland, David Birdsall, and Greg Gagnon who I expect to get to talk about when they get their own writing careers going.
What a fun crew.
I came back with a number of new ideas and looking forward to going to the next FenCon.
What’s left in September? Well, to be honest, prepping for October, plus we’ve got our Dudes in Hyperspace podmail episode coming out this week.
On October 4th, we have the release of Trisha J. Wooldridge’s Heart, Wings, and Fire. This is another new series set in her 27 Kingdoms world.
This story is really something new for New Mythology Press, something I’ve been wanting to see. It’s full of action, but less in the way of swords and more in the way of standing up to challenges. It’s also set in an Asian-inspired setting. I love all sorts of myths and legends from across the world and I want to see more of it.
Then on October 11th, we have the 9th Eldros Legacy novel, A Murder of Wolves, from Jamie Ibson. This is set on Daemanon and is a neat take on druids.
There’ll be more from the Dudes in Hyperspace, of course, and maybe more still yet to talk about.
September 2022 rocked, and I can’t wait for October.
We continue with our interviews of authors in Keen Edge of Valor, coming out one week from today at FantaSci, with Mel Todd.
Mel and I see each other at a number of cons, but it was only this past LibertyCon we had a real chance to chat. She’s got a great sense of humor, as you’ll see in her story “Of Claws and Men,” the second short story in her Small Magics universe.
Interview: Mel Todd
What is your quest?
To tell the stories I can’t find. To show people ways reality can twist, and how the ordinary person can prove themselves extraordinary.
What is your favorite color?
Purple! Lol – one of the things I love to do is set my desktop wallpaper to random and load different themes. For a while it was Hubble Telescope pictures, then walls of covers from multiple genres, right now it is all “You should be writing” meme’s. I will say Tom Hiddleston’s Loki might have one or two in there.
What is the average flying speed of an unladen paint brush?
Oh, number one – don’t join a romance group and let them read your non-romance sci-fi. You will walk away thinking you are the worst writer ever. Asking for help is great, but make sure they LIKE the genre you are writing in. Hmmm… life. Life is hard sometimes. Finding time to write is even harder. Make it a priority, but be nice to yourself and accept you can only do so much.
What are the powers of your personal Holy Hand Grenade?
Wait you get a holy hand grenade? No fair. AT all. All I have is a Cat of Superciliousness. So on those days I just can’t – the want to suck the thumb and crawl into a ball – those days? 5 minute timer. You only have to write for 5 minutes – nonstop, 5 minutes. Most of the time I’ll decide I can do another 5 minutes. You’d be amazed how much you can get if you just do it for 5, 10, 15 minutes. Otherwise creatively? I talk to myself – a lot.
Favorite Muppet? Miss Piggy! Sexy, confident, and has a tail. How can you not love her?
Crunchy or Creamy? Crunchy. I want my nuts to have substance.
Favorite Sports Team? ….. Ravenclaws?
Cake or Pie? Pie. With ice cream or cheddar cheese if apple.
Lime or Lemon? Yes
Favorite Chip Dip? … salsa – especially good with cream cheese.
Wet or Dry? I didn’t realize this was an X-Rated interview. I’d have to make sure all your readers are over 18 to answer that.
Favorite Musical Performer We’ve Never Heard Of? Ohh… I don’t know if I am that obsure of a music person – relatively common Sisters of Mercy and Johnny Horton.
Whisky or Whiskey? Yes
Favorite Superhero? She-Hulk. Sorry I LOVE Jennifer Walters. She is so awesome. No angst, rolled with it, and rocked it.
Steak Temperature? Blood should be dripping.
Favorite 1970s TV show? I don’t recall telling you how ancient I am – but Bionic Woman. Jamie Summers is my idol.
Winter, Spring, Summer, or Fall? Fall, dear goddess Fall. I want my apple cider, my fireplace, my smores!
Favorite Pet? Oh my pussy – ha, told you, no X-rated answers. I have 3 cats who all feel like I serve them. So, yeah. I’m owned. I admit it.
Best Game Ever? …. You hate me don’t you. How do you expect me to choose? So… Colossal Cave Adventure all the way up to Planescape Torment to WoW…. And lots in between. Then there is Munchkin and Solitare and Gems of War and LARP and White Wolf and D&D (I’m agnostic sorry) so Best Game Ever – the one I am playing at this moment. Which happens to be called My Creative Brain Hates me.
Coffee or Tea? Coffee in the mornings, iced tea in the summer evenings, and hot tea with spirits in the winter evenings.
Sci-Fi or Fantasy? Yes. What? I like to try different flavors. I’m equal opportunity. ~Wiggles eyesbrows~
What question(s) would you like to ask me?
Well, Rob….. oh.. x-rated.. right. So – dang it all my questions are business related and probably REALLY boring to anyone not trying to make a living at this, so Dragoncon yes?
Rob’s Answer: Well, since this is well after DragonCon I can reliably inform you I’m unlikely to go in 2018. Actually, I did not have a great time at DragonCon last year. It was fun, but not the amount of fun I paid for.
A big part of why is that I love my job. I enjoy being on panels. I like interacting with writers and readers. The bigger a con is the more difficult that becomes, especially since I’m not yet a big enough name for DragonCon to approve me as an attending professional.
Also, I recently moved and frankly needed a fall with few long trips. I go to Pennsic every year where I make money and people know me. It’s only a few weeks before DragonCon and I just didn’t have enough spoons to push to go.
Will I go in 2019? I don’t know. It’ll depend on where my career is to an extent. Ask me at LibertyCon.
Tell me again where we can find your stuff?
OOOH… Self Promo!!! www.badashpublishing.com we has books, we has blogs and we will be at LibertyCon in 2019 and Dragoncon always. What can I say, I’m addicted.
And where can we find you?
Oh… umm.. I wrote the above before I read this.. um… Moonlight and Magnolias in 2018 and 20booksto50kVegas in 2018. Hmm… otherwise, beg me to come (oops x-rated again) and I’ll think about it.
Do you have a creator biography?
And low the heavens opened and then slammed shut again, leaving Mel standing in the wet dreary California farmland. What shall become of our waif? Tune in to find out.
Final question for you: What should I have asked but did not?
Hmmm.. name/species/orientaion might have been a good start. Mel Todd – human (maybe), vertical most of the time, except when I’m horizontal.
Thanks to Mel Todd for taking the time to answer my questions.
If you have any suggestions or comments about this interview format, let me know so I can keep tweaking it.
If you are a creator, especially an independent creator, and you want to be spotlighted in a future interview, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also, if you want to join my mailing list, where I’ll announce every interview, as well as what’s going on in my life, go to www.robhowell.org and fill out the form (Name and Email Address) or drop me an email and I’ll add you.
I’m in Dalton, GA at ConFinement, the mini-convention to replace LibertyCon. It’s been fantastic to get out and see people. Since I’m on the road and lots of things are going on, this is a bit abbreviated.
And I’m clearly not the only one. We’re having a great time.
While it’s much, much smaller than LibertyCon, it’s been especially nice to actually get to talk to some people I’ve been aware of, but haven’t really gotten to konw.
I’m still making progress with None Call Me Mother. It is almost not vaporware. Finally.
Too much is going on here. Having a great time. Will talk more later.
What I’m Listening To
The Baen Road show is happening on the other side of the room. The Baen people talk about what’s coming, give out books, and generally have a hoot. Most LibertyCons I can’t go because I’m usually scheduled against it, so I’m really happy to to get to watch this time.
Quote of the Week
“There is one true way of writing, and it’s whatever helps you get words on the page.”
– Me, to many new writers. Keep writing everyone.
Let’s start with None Call Me Mother. I should have that to my editor within a few weeks. I know it’s been slow. I wanted to have this done in 2018, much less last year. Stuff happened and I apologize. But it’s coming and it’s good.
What will happen in Shijuren after that?
Glad you asked.
This fall I’ll be working on the next Edward novel. I don’t have a working title yet, but it’ll be a bit of an homage to Dick Francis. There’s trouble at Achrida’s Hippodrome and it might hurt horse-racing across the entire Empire of Makhaira if Edward can’t figure it out.
Then, I’ll start another trilogy in Shijuren with different characters based in Amaranth. I’ve said a number of times that chickens are coming home to roost all across Shijuren, and this will tell of roostings in the south.
My plan is to write one Shijuren novel a year, alternating between an Edward novel and whatever other series I’m working on at the time, at least for now. It may end up being one Edward and two series novels, but we’ll see.
I also plan on writing short stories set in the universe. In fact, the first is already written and I’ll get to that in a moment. I’m really enjoying writing short stories in general, and whenever I get a chance to write one in Shijuren, I will.
But wait, there’s more. I’m making progress on creating an OGL d20 based system set in Shijuren. The first embryonic concepts of Shijuren started rolling around my head 25 years ago as a place for great D&D adventures. In many ways, it’s exceeded my expectation in that aspect alone.
The system I have in mind aims to streamline game play with a cool character creation system that allows players to mold characters to fit their own playing style.
It also aims to encourage players to try stupid but fun stuff that isn’t necessarily defined in the rules. Whether it’s trying a crazy tactic, using a skill in an unorthodox manner, or using magic in a weird way to save the day, it’ll be designed to give DMs guidelines to react to players making stuff up on the fly.
The biggest challenge I’ve faced in this so far has been how to mold my magic system into a usable system for a game. It’s a great magic system from a writing perspective, but it hadn’t been obvious how to translate it to gaming. However, I’ve finally come up with what I think is a really cool plan that ought to be a lot of fun.
Creating a game system is a big project, even with many of the basics already built in from the OGL side of things. I’m blessed to have some skilled and talented friends who will be helping along the way. I’ll tell you all more about them later.
I don’t have a specific timeline for getting this game published, but at some point, hopefully in 2020, I’ll be at cons running some playtest adventures as well as starting a home group.
What you can expect is periodic updates. I might even add a category in my Weekly Updates related to game concepts and ideas.
As you can see, though, Shijuren is going to grow a ton in the next few years. Thanks for coming along.
Of course, I’ve got a bunch more planned for 2020 than just Shijuren, including The Four Horsemen Universe. After I finish None Call Me Mother, my long form work in progress will be the sequel to The Feeding of Sorrows.
I have lots of stuff to play with in here.
What are Edmonds and Tahnerif going to do?
I promised Jackson a platoon. What’s going to happen to his momma’s boy?
Kiial will definitely have more to say about his uncle as his time in the Foresters continues.
Speaking of the uncle, Tlanit and Rick Blaine are going to work at peeling away some of the layers.
Going to be fun.
I’m actually going to describe some of this in a short story in another Four Horsemen anthology coming out in 2020. Right now, I’m playing with a number of ideas, but rest assured, there’s more happening with the Foresters.
Speaking of short stories, I’ll be contributing to the second We Dare, anthology. The story I’m working on will be a prequel to “The Chaos of Well-Seeming Forms,” my story in the first anthology. We might just find out why the Allardecks and Fieldings hate each other. This will also be fun, as I’ll be collaborating for the first time. Yvonne Jacobs is already helping me plan the story.
I intend to do four or five short stories for anthologies each year, so don’t be surprised if I announce a couple more later in the year. I’ve been asked to be a part of some others already, but I’m still trying to balance my writing schedule.
That doesn’t include, by the way, the return of Nick Patara, PI. I’ve enjoyed the response and I had a great time writing it. I also enjoyed being able to give back to you guys.
The next big news comes from a comment above, I mentioned that I’ve submitted a Shijuren story to an anthology already.
And this one is special.
Chris Kennedy gave me the opportunity to create a anthology of fantasy stories. It will be entitled When Valor Must Hold.
The writing prompt I gave the authors was the opening of Conan the Barbarian, where Akira the Wizard concludes, “Let me tell you of the days of high adventure!”
The authors have given me what I wanted: stories with adventures and action across a really broad set of fantasy sub-genres. It’s a great mix and I think you’ll like it a lot. Heroic deeds done by characters who might not start as heroes but end up in that category. The characters all face things to test their valor and we shall see how their valor holds.
The anticipated release date is 20 March, which is the Friday of FantaSci. We plan to have a great release party there and I hope to celebrate with a bunch of you.
This brings me to my plans for Howell’s Howls this year. I really enjoyed my system of having a blog post Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.
Rob’s Updates will continue on Fridays. I’m going to tweak the format a bit, like including game notes each week, but it’ll continue much the same.
I’m also going to continue with the interviews. I just finished re-writing the questions I send out, so you’ll see some new interviews by people who I’ve already interviewed. I’m going to start the year with interviews of authors in When Valor Must Hold, and run those interviews as long as it takes.
Hit me up if you’re a creator of any type, and I’ll send you the questions and get you into the queue. I really enjoy doing these and hope to be more proactive about making sure I have an interview ready to go each week.
That brings us to Mondays. Mag Reviews take a ton of time, too much for just a regular blog post. I’m going to replace them with Rob’s Ramblings, which will be a catchall thing for whatever interests me. including reviews of movies and albums, snippets, poems, sports topics, or whatever. This week, it was my ShadowCon AAR. One post you can expect in March is an AAR about creating When Valor Must Hold. It’s already taught me a bunch.
This does not mean Mag Reviews will go away. They take too long as a blog post, but there’s a still a place for them and I’m playing with some ideas.
Overall, my online presence will continue as it has been. In September, I stopped reading my Facebook News Feed. This was a great decision on my part. I miss out on a number of things, but that News Feed brought me down.
I check my Facebook Notifications consistently, though, and that’s been enough. If you want me to see something, please tag me and I’ll check it out. Otherwise, I’m almost never going to see anything.
I originally planned to limit my Facebook posts to business-related things, but I think I’ll start posting about the same frequency I did prior to last September. I’ve missed chatting with people about a variety of fun things and while I’ll never go back to reading the News Feed, I’ll get back to posting fun things along with my professional stuff.
The same is basically true on Twitter. I have always limited my Twitter feed to focus on some excellent sports bloggers and other interests like that, along with professional stuff. I will continue to look at those sorts of things, so if you want me to see something, you better tag me.
I’ve played around with MeWe, but the interface has yet to click with me. I’ll keep trying though. I’ll also keep dabbling in Instagram. This might expand with some of the other things I’ve got going on. I’ll also keep my eyes open for better social media options.
My appearance schedule in 2020 is going to be amazing. The biggest news is, of course, I got accepted as an Attending Professional at DragonCon this year. What an amazing honor. I will do my best to reward them for giving me the chance.
I also received word this weekend that I’ve been approved as a vendor at Dagorhir’s Ragnarok XXXV in June. This is a major LARPing event and I am excited to meet a bunch of people and introduce Shijuren to them.
I’ll be at LibertyCon again. None of what’s happened above would be possible without the lessons and experiences I’ve had at LibertyCons past. It’s really pushed me along and I’m incredibly grateful to Brandy and her peeps.
The expansion of Drix’s shop at Pennsic last year went well, and it’ll be even better this year. We’ve had a great time there and sales keep inching up there for me.
As I mentioned, we hope to have a great release party for When Valor Must Hold at FantaSci. I picked FantaSci over Gulf Wars, Planet Comicon in Kansas City, and a bunch of other events on the weekend of 20 March. Why did everything have to be then? In any case, even without the release party, I would go to FantaSci. It’s already a great con.
My next event is ChattaCon in a few weeks. It’ll be a blast, in part because Lani Brooks puts me on a bunch of panels.
Let’s see, do I have my yearly goals covered in 2020?
2-3 novels: Check. I hope to have two by September and be working on the Edward novel in the fall.
4-5 short stories (plus Nick Patara): I have one in the can, two planned, and some opportunities to juggle. I can’t say this is fully laid out, but I anticipate no real problems.
3 blog posts per week: Mag Reviews made that really challenging, and I expect to be more consistent here. I won’t stress too much if I miss out on one of the weekly standards, but it’s a reasonable, feasible schedule
Figure out a way to make Mag Reviews work: I’m playing around with this. Probably won’t happen for a while, but there’s value here.
Make progress on the RPG: Meetings are scheduled and I anticipate consistent activity on this front. Again, I don’t have a realistic timeline, just a plan to turn it from vaporware into something real.
Create a smart travel schedule: Spring is fairly light, and will be productive from a writing standpoint. Summer will be go go go and I’ll have many miles on the road. Fall will be light, much like spring. This past fall, I didn’t go to any cons after September. I will add a con or two because I think more than three months is too much of a break from going to a con.
Take care of myself: I’m starting with being more conscious of things, as shown by pacing my travel schedule better. I’m also going to adjust my summer production expectations to match reality. Finally, I’m going to schedule some down time/vacation/retreat type things. No details yet, but they’ll be there.
Get back to fighting: This includes working out and losing weight. I’ve a helm on order and I can’t really fight until it gets here, but I can work out. I’ll have a plan for that soon.
I look at these goals and am getting even more excited. None of them seem outlandish and if I complete them, it’ll make 2020 amazing.
Now that I have a plan, I think I’ll watch the Blues and play a game for a while. Then, tomorrow, write a chapter or two in None Call Me Mother.
December 25th: “Silent Knight,” the first of the Nick Patara, PI Christmas gifts to my readers.
I’m incredibly pleased at the success of these stories. Four of those, including all 3 Phases of Mars anthologies and The Feeding of Sorrows, earned at least one orange tag.
An orange tag on Amazon signifies it’s a bestseller. Now I can add “Amazon Bestselling Author” to my bio. That’s pretty darn awesome.
I’m also pleased that I still love all six of these tales. I am never pleased with the quality of writing in any of my past stories, because with each new one I get better. However, the tales are all good. I know this because I still cry at the end of each one.
If I don’t get emotional reading my stuff, I can’t expect you to do so either. I still get emotional on all of them.
The biggest negative of 2019 is that I didn’t get None Call Me Mother published. I had even hoped to make progress on Edward 4, but that was always only a faint hope.
Despite that, I’m not displeased with my writing output. I’m up to 93k on None Call Me Mother, so it’s getting close. I chose to write The Feeding of Sorrows instead and it was a great decision.
I also chose to follow Bill Fawcett’s advice. He said to me at LibertyCon in 2018 that I should write more short stories. I’d be an idiot if I didn’t pay attention to him. I may yet be an idiot, but not about this.
My goal is two or three novels a year and four or more short stories. I came really close if I count the words I actually wrote in 2019. I wrote about 75k of The Feeding of Sorrows and about 20k towards its sequel. I wrote about 80k in None Call Me Mother in 2019. I also worked on a couple of special projects I’ll announce when I post my look ahead to 2020. All told, I submitted six short stories (one yet to come), and wrote about 175k of long fiction. 230k or so of fiction is not shabby.
I did this despite not taking care of myself. Following Pennsic, I spent 5-6 weeks in a funk. This was driven initially by fatigue, because I traveled a ton this past summer. Then my brain weasels got involved, chastising me for not being productive, and that spiraled down.
Fortunately, I recovered in time to complete all of the items I had promised to various editors. Had I paid attention to myself, though, I believe I would have finished None Call Me Mother. Ah, well.
I have adjustments planned for 2020. One challenge of being self-employed is that I have to play mental games with myself to keep me from doing stupid stuff, like losing those 5-6 weeks.
I went to a number of fantastic events in 2019. This was my first year as a vendor on my own at Gulf Wars. Drix and I also expanded our booth at Pennsic, and this is exciting. LibertyCon was wonderful and emotional. FantaSci went great, not great for a first time con, but great. So great I’m choosing it over Gulf Wars and Planet Comicon in 2020.
I did all these things while also getting the opportunity to serve as Their Majesty Calontir’s herald in the first half of the year. I love doing that job. Thanks to Donnghal and Catalina for giving me that opportunity. And yes, you totally got me.
My sweetie and I did a bunch of work to the house. We replaced around 1000 sq. ft. of carpet with bamboo. I love this stuff. Nice on my feet and pretty. We also started a new additional closet in the master suite, which had a ton of useless inefficient space.
The closest thing to a true negative are my tracked items, I spun my wheels a bit. I gained a little weight, though I’ve made it through most of the holidays without gaining much extra. My tracked word count, which includes only those things I actually released to the editor or on my blog, would have exceeded my goal had I managed to get None Call Me Mother to my editor, but of course will fall short in its actual number.
My wiki suffered a hacking attack in the spring. I have recovered most of the lost things, but I plan on redoing most entries. I learned a ton working on the 4HU wiki for nearly a year that I intend on incorporating. I’ll talk about that in my 2020 post.
These are my end results. I’ll work on improving them all in 2020.
Today’s Weight: 395.2
Updated Word Count: 146,912
Shijuren Wiki: 874 entries
I have so many people to thank. I’m going to take a crack at it, but will undoubtedly forget some people. But here’s what I can think of right now with a cat demanding petsies.
Mom, sweetie, and proto-incipient step-daughter come first. Living with a writer ain’t easy.
Chris Kennedy gave me a bunch of opportunities. I can’t thank him enough. James L. Young let me write in all 3 Phases of Mars, and those are good stories. Jamie Ibson let me break his soul in We Dare. Mark Wandrey kept encouraging me, especially his help in the 4HU. Kevin Ikenberry helped a ton with the Peacemaker aspects of my 4HU stuff. Frankly, let’s just thank all of the crew that Chris has gathered about him. They’re all making me better.
Kellie Hultgren did a great job editing my personal stuff and teaching me how to become a better writer. The staff at Brewbakers put up with me, and I rewarded them with tuckering it in “Silent Knight.”
Drix helped me grow my SCA sales presence. Tons of people encouraged me. One even allowed me to stay at her family’s lake house for a week of writing and solitude. I need to schedule this sort of thing once or twice a year.
Despite not getting None Call Me Mother out and spinning my wheels a bit, 2019 was definitely my best year so far. And it’s not close.
I’m growing leaps and bounds as a writer. My most recent project has helped me turn things I knew instinctively into things I understand. This is already showing up in None Call Me Mother and in “Silent Knight,” not to mention my earlier growth in 2019.
2019 was my best year.
2020 will be better. Lot’s better. We’re building something here and I will tell you all about what’s coming in a few days.
For now, though. Thanks to all of you. I really appreciate it.
I’m in Rocky Mount, NC visiting relatives after another fantastic LibertyCon. As always, so much happened that I’ll forget things. It’s the way of cons in general and LibertyCon in particular. I float from awesome thing to awesome thing without enough time to process stuff properly, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
This year, as I’ve mentioned, LibertyCon faced some of the greatest challenges any con has ever faced. Their hotel crapped out on them. The Read House in Chattanooga might be pretty, but they burned some bridges here. A hotel breaking a contract is no big thing, I had it happen to me, and NeoCon in Wichita ended because of it. I had to tell some relative unknown named David Weber that we had to cancel the con and not have him as Guest of Honor. The fact that LibertyCon rolled with it and made it work, especially in the time frame they had is amazing to me.
That is, of course, a credit to the incredible staff, both in their skill and stability. There will come a time when Brandy, Rich, Donnie, Matthew, Vonn, Fritz, and all the rest are not LibertyCon’s spark plugs, but it is not this day! It is one of my favorite aspects of LibertyCon that they are so competent at their jobs, which allowed them to handle this year so smoothly from the perspective of those attending the con. Thanks to all of them and their staff.
That staff is a testimony to the foundations laid by Uncle Timmy. I have talked about him before, but the best tribute is 32 years and going strong of the best SF/F con I’ve ever seen. Honestly, I was a lot less emotional at the con than I expected. I thought about him quite a bit, though I was never terribly close to him, but I was rarely sad. Sad he wasn’t there, of course, but the truth is I was reveling in his creation too much to be sad. Not a bad legacy to have.
I will note, I’m crying while writing this. When I cry at Brewbaker’s, the staff there isn’t surprised or worried. I’m usually killing a character that I like, so that’s alright then. The waitress here at this random bar is probably worried about me. Hopefully, she’s just remember me as a random weirdo.
Speaking of parents, my mom joined me on this trip. She loved LibertyCon too. At Closing Ceremonies, when Brandy announced the dates for membership sales, mom told me to get her one and that was before Linda Bolgeo, among others, taught her to play Yahtzee at the dead dog party and she lasted longer than I did. Yes, Fritz, you’re right: “Rob’s mom sucks less than he does.”
Side note: Fritz, you made me laugh with this, which is just as well as you made me cry for the other.
The weekend started with getting together on Thursday night. This will shock people, but we closed the bar. It’s always great to get together and catch up, especially after such a productive year for all of us.
Side note, we’re not the Inklings, but the writing crew Chris Kennedy has gathered into his orbit is talented and hard-working. We’re doing great stuff already, and the future looks bright. Tons of stuff planned, announced, and plotted at LibertyCon. I’m honored to be a part of this.
The con started with those of us in the Four Horsemen Universe talking about the future of the 4HU. The Omega War series concluded with Alabaster Noon, and there was concern that this meant the 4HU was slowing down. To the contrary, the Omega War, despite its name, is only the second of five main-line series being plotted right now. That does not include side novels like The Feeding of Sorrows and a slew of other projects. The 4HU ain’t going away now. I’d be shocked if the eventual corpus of the 4HU is less than 100 novels plus anthologies, games, and whatever else. We’re at 35 and growing now.
Next was a panel on the contact between history, historical fiction, and fantasy. The best part of this con was chatting with David P. Coe, who is a very smart man and excellent writer.
I mentioned there wasn’t as much emotion as I expected about Timmy at LibertyCon, but Opening Ceremonies was one of two places where it was greatest. Gray Rinehart sang a new filk about Timmy, making Brandy cry. Then, Christopher Woods, looking bewildered, was drug up on the stage by Toni Weisskopf to announce a new anthology tuckerizing all of LibertyCon in honor of Timmy that will include a bunch of big names. The proceeds will go to both LibertyCon and a scholarship to the Tennessee Valley Interstellar Workshop. Really cool, and it’s great to see good things happen to Chris.
My autograph session at 7pm went well, as I got a chance to chat with a few people and even sold a book or two. That’s what such a session is there for, and they are also one of the few times I can actually talk for a bit with a fan instead of the usual go-go-go. That’s so nice.
Then I did a reading with Theresa Howard at 9pm. Readings are fun, but sadly, 9pmm readings don’t tend to get many viewers. Probably just as well, because I don’t like the selection I made from The Feeding of Sorrows. Not enough action. I’ll pick a better choice next time.
I intended, at that point, to make it an early night. Narrator: “He did not make it an early night.” We got into a long discussion that turned into revelry at the bar. Closed it down again. I knew I wasn’t closing down the bar on Saturday, though…
Saturday started with a number of logistical things for the party, plus getting a bunch of old computer equipment to Gerry Martin. He has found ways to take all the old stuff, refurbish it, and provide it to a variety of users. Plus, it got boxes of stuff out of my house.
The banquet was the other moment of big emotion about Uncle Timmy, especially Arlen Andrews’ speech. It was also a great time for my mom, which I really enjoyed.
At 4pm, Chris Kennedy hosted his year ahead. He might have to do it in two hours next year, as he has so much going on. I got to announce the sequel to The Feeding of Sorrows, The Ravening of Wolves. I’m aiming to have it out around FantaSci next year.
At 6pm, I had an Author’s Alley time. This, too, went really well I thought. I would have done really well if I could have had a solid block of three hours, but there simply wasn’t time this year.
And that’s because of the Rob Howell/Chris Kennedy Publishing Party. This was, again, a rollicking success. We lasted past 3:30am. We went late enough that the bartenders were able to close the bar and come join us for a bit. Technically, we did *not* close the bar. Technically.
It’s become such a success we’re looking at getting more square footage as we’re just doing too well. Plans are afoot to make it even more fun next year.
Sadly, that meant when 9:30am rolled around and I theoretically had to get down to Author’s Alley at 10, I simply rolled over and got another hour or so of sleep. Sorry, not sorry. Will plan better next year.
I concluded my panels with a fun one called: Pantsing for Beginners. If you’ve never heard the term, Pantsing is “writing by the seat of your pants.” In other words, not plotting ahead of time. This ended up as a pretty good two-hour panel including Rich Weyand and Stephanie Osborn.
We left that to get to Closing Ceremonies, where Brandy announced the 2020 dates, 12-14 June. Then we went to meat fest at Rodizio’s, which wasn’t as organized this year because the restaurant didn’t respond to Gerry. Ah well, we ate meat. Lots of meat.
Last year I checked out of the dead dog party early. I almost did so again, but I caught a second wind and lasted until 11:30. Mom lasted until midnight. I had a great time chatting with Bubba of Bubba Truck fame and a bunch of others.
LibertyCon was, as usual, fruitful in all the ways. I have a number of new irons in the fire. While I don’t have many details at this time, suffice to say, I’ve got a bunch of new projects to work on. And that means, at LibertyCon 2020, I’ll just have to make new plans.
So thanks to Brandy and everyone running the con. Thanks to Mark and Chris for the 4HU. Thanks to the fans that are keeping The Feeding of Sorrows at number two new release in Action and Adventure. Thanks to all I hung out with at LibertyCon. And thanks to all who’ve supported me over the past few years. I’ll keep trying to get better.
Halfway through 2019! Happy Half-New Year. Or Half-Through Year. Whichever you prefer.
Before I left for LibertyCon, I sent off my story “In Dark’ning Storms” to James L. Young, creator of the Phases of Mars series of alternate histories. I’m finding that a lot of writing short stories is plugging away for a while, then finding the core, the soul, of the story along the way. Then, I have to cut out all that I’ve written which isn’t part of that soul. Only then do I come up with a good story.
Last weekend, I wasn’t entirely pleased with the story. When I finished on Wednesday, which involved cutting out 3-4000 words and replacing them, I was very emotional at the end. Which is as it should be.
Now I’m here in Chattanooga and LibertyCon has been fantastic already, and we still have quite a bit to go. My panels have gone well, the reader response from The Feeding of Sorrows has been fantastic, and I’ve made a bunch of connections. Lots of irons heating up in the fire.
Minutes ago at the Chris Kennedy Publishing upcoming year panel, I announced the sequel to Sorrows. The working title is: When Need Shall Arise. Again, this title is drawn from the Havamal.
Tonight will be the joint room party with Chris and I. It’ll be a blast, as it always is. We’re having MAC rounds and Peepo’s Pitch this year, along with our normal variety of stuff.
I guess I should go get everything ready for people to have fun.
Current Playlist Song
Actually, just the sound of the air conditioning. A little peace and quiet in the midst of the go-go-go is quite pleasant.
Quote of the Week
This week, I’m going with a fun Heinlein quote. It seems appropriate given the number of writers here at LibertyCon.
Writing is not necessarily something to be ashamed of, but do it in private and wash your hands afterwards.
– Robert A. Heinlein
This week’s spotlight is on the staff at LibertyCon, the best con staff I’ve seen. It’s been an incredibly challenging year for them. Their initial hotel didn’t live up to its obligations, forcing a change in location. This change forced a changed in date. Then, worst of all, the founder of the con, Uncle Timmy, passed away.
And yet, we’re all here having a great time, getting new things plotted and arranged to keep creating.
Today’s Weight: 384.4
Updated Word Count: 156,157
Shijuren Wiki: 874 entries
Let me know if you have any suggestions on the website, this email, or cool story ideas at email@example.com. Especially let me know of suggestions you have for the Spotlight section.