Traveling through Time & Space: Cleveland Concoction 2018

This week in Cleveland: ME!

March 9 through March 11, at Cleveland Concoction, a fabulous fan-run, volunteer-run convention for all things Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Gaming, Filk and fun. Here’s the official site: About Cleveland ConCoction

I’ll be there. My books will be there. SEANAN McGUIRE WILL BE THERE (So I am told)  Lots of awesome authors, gamers, readers, and SFF fans of all kinds will be there. I’ll be participating in some panel discussions that should be fabulous. Check out my schedule below:

  • Friday 2:00 PM Stories About Coming up with Characters. Sometimes we deliberately and painstakingly craft our characters, sometimes even excruciatingly pulling out our creativity… and then, other times, the characters drop in on us in the oddest way!
  • Saturday 11:00 AM Author Showcase (Session 2) Listen to your favorite authors read excerpts from released and soon to be released works. Find your next great read. Ask questions, and discover the new worlds
  • Saturday 12:00 PM Autographing (Session 2) – Author Alley Meet and talk with your favorite authors and rising stars. Purchase books and have them signed. 
  • Saturday 10:00 PM NSFW 2.0 Sex, violence, strong language; writers discuss their own personal limits on controversial subjects.
  • 11:00 AM What’s in a Genre?Science Fantasy, Slipstream, Speculative Fiction – let’s get down and unclassifiable and explore what we mean when we define a story’s genre.

Londinium Cover Reveal!

I’m really excited today because I get to help Debbie spread the word about  the brand-new awesome cover for the next book in her P.A.W.S. Saga, LONDINIUM. The cover was created by the hugely talented Rachel Bostwick who also made the cover for the new box set of books 1 to 3 that are now available on Amazon.

So here goes – drum roll please – LONDINIUM (The P.A.W.S. Saga 4), on presale now.

londinium

“The pea soup has spoken,” said Caradog. “You are destined for Londinium.”
“Londinium?” asked Miri.
“It was the ancient city from which London sprang. The P.A.W.S. Institute of Londinium is the oldest in the world. It started before the city of today existed and straddles the old and the new. Unfortunately, today it is run by a fool.”

Join Miri as she continues her journey through Umbrae and Londinium with the help of werecats, wild warlocks, an old dog, a duck, and a whole lot of pea soup.

The P.A.W.S. Saga continues with Londinium.

Need to catch up?

You can do that all in one place with a brand new box set of books 1 to 3. Now available on Amazon.

DON’T MISS OUT! Get yours today.

box set

Happy Author Bubble

TL;DR  The good: someone bought my ebooks as a friendly gesture because they knew me for reasons unrelated to writing. The better: they recommended the books to a second person who bought them too. The BEST: the second person liked the books even more!

Full explanation. It’s long, but I feel bubbly, so I’m sharing backstory and all.

I work the Butterflies & Blooms exhibit at the Chicago Botanic Garden every summer. It’s a volunteer gig done in four-hour shifts, and I’ve hopped from shift to shift over the years as as my library schedule allowed. Since many volunteers have worked the same shift all five years the exhibit’s been open, I’ve gotten to know dozens of fascinating, knowledgeable, helpful, friendly people.

The volunteer pool is a fascinating and inclusive group, mostly retirees from all backgrounds imaginable. Being casual acquaintances who might never otherwise cross social paths, we cover All the Usual Topics during quiet periods between visitor groups. You know the list: what do you do, where do you live, how’s the family, what’s new in your life, etc… Since I’m an author,  writing anecdotes are one of the things I end up sharing.

Few of the others are speculative fiction readers,  but they ask great questions about the nuts and bolts aspects and  are cheerfully supportive in a general way. Their reactions and respect are welcome reminders that the wide world is much bigger and more accepting of independent authors than the pop-culture and publishing pools where I spend most of my time swimming.

One of the volunteers on my new shift last year–let’s call her Butterfly Reader One–was so tickled to learn she knew a published author she grabbed some of my ebooks so she could say she owned them. Despite not being a speculative fiction reader (at all)  she ended up reading and enjoying the Partners books and Flight Plan, then read and loved Extraordinary. This made me giddy, and I was profuse with thanks and gratitude, but  of course I chalked up the praise to politeness and casual friendliness because that’s how I roll.

This year Reader One and I are both on a new shift together, and a few weeks ago I learned that  Reader One mentioned to another volunteer that I wrote books she’d enjoyed. (!) The way I heard this news was the truly glee-making part.  Reader Two approached me to say how much she had enjoyed Extraordinary, and did I have any print books–because she would love to own a signed book.

I restrained myself to merely hopping up and down and clapping, but picture the happy Kermit flailing inside. Yeah. There was flailing.

Of course I shared the news that I have two novels in print form, then issued the disclaimer that they are in a different series. We chatted about the two series and what she liked about Extraordinary (more strictly internal happy-dancing on my part) and she wrote down the titles of the other books in the Rough Passages collection.

I honestly thought it would end there, but this week…well. This week Reader Two brought in the copy of Controlled Descent she purchased, and handed me a pen.

Squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

Soon after that I handed out two business cards to two more volunteers who were delighted by the sight of the print book.

Color me happy.