Tuesday, February 16, 2010

LTUE and Great Pub

I had so much fun at LTUE (the scifi and fantasy symposium at BYU). I don't know how else to describe it. I thoroughly enjoyed myself. I served on some great panels, mingled with many writers and Duders, had a wonderful book signing, and read a couple of chapters from THE SCORCH TRIALS to a very enthusiastic audience.

Just a sampling of my favorite moments:

1. I was honored to record a couple of live podcasts of WRITING EXCUSES with Brandon Sanderson (MISTBORN, WHEEL OF TIME), Howard Tayler (SCHLOCK MERCENARY), and Dan Wells (I AM NOT A SERIAL KILLER). These guys are hilarious, and all three of them are very good friends. So you can imagine the fun we had, especially fed by the crowd of people that was hundreds if not pushing a thousand. You can listen, for free, to the result by CLICKING HERE. You can also learn more about these three yahoos who made me the butt of all their jokes.

2. Speaking of being the butt of jokes, I was also "honored" to be the main buttster for Brandon's keynote address on Saturday, also in front of many people. Best line: Brandon squinted at his notes and said, "This is getting too dry, make fun of Dashner." He looked at me and said, "You stink." Then he said, "My notes actually say that, 'squint at notes and then tell Dashner he stinks.'" Hey, any publicity is good publicity!

3. Brandon's address was really, really, really good. The basic gist was that there is some great stuff in speculative fiction and people who say differently are stupid (though he said it much more intelligently and inspiringly). Boo yah! I don't think I ever realized just how funny Brandon was until this conference, where he was Guest of Honor and really let himself go.

4. Serving on a panel and talking with L.E. Modesitt Jr., one of the most successful scifi/fantasy authors ever. I've known him for several years now, and he's always been so real and down to Earth and inspiring.

5. What I mostly enjoyed was seeing and hanging out with the attendees at the conference. It gets better every year, and I really had a great time. Hello to everyone I met, saw again, ate with, talked with, discussed writing with, etc. Especially to the Duders who came!!!


I also wanted to share a couple of cool articles in which THE MAZE RUNNER was mentioned, especially since these are both huge publications:

1. The L.A. Times: CLICK HERE.

2. Publisher's Weekly: CLICK HERE.

36 comments:

Angie said...

It was so fun! I'm so glad that I went. Thanks for signing my copy of Maze Runner for me.

Candice said...

It was really great to meet you. I especially enjoyed hearing you read from The Scorch Trials (What is a Crank???!!! I must know.). Thanks for taking the time to chat with us mere aspiring writers. I know we all appreciated your tips and perspective.

Debbie (Nerd Goddess) said...

It was fun seeing you! I was first in line for your book signing in Friday. I ended up not getting to any panels with you on them, though. I kind of spaced it on Saturday and didn't go to anything... oh well. :D

Don said...

I managed to catch three hours of the conference. I'm sad I didn't get to meet up with you, but I was only there for a small smidgen of time and since you are now one of the writerly elite, I doubt I could have pressed my way through your admiring hoard, anyway.

I do look forward to seeing you at Storymakers, though.

Kasie West said...

Were we that "enthusiastic audience" you read to? I would've described us as more "demanding" but your words work too. :) So about that chapter 2......

By the way, I like how you're teasing us with the countdown to The Scorch Trials on your sidebar. It's like when my family and I start our drive to Utah (which is a 14 hour drive from here) and my daughter asks me after 1 hour "are we almost there" and I say, "yes, we'll be there soon." Why is your book still 13 hours away??? (metaphorically speaking)

Juliet Crane said...

I wish i could have been there, sounds like it was fun! I was wondering what year the maze runner is set in? I know it's in the future, but how far?

Morgan said...

Will you be in indiana anytime soon?

Alyssa said...

Hey James!

I'm glad you had a good time and I wished I could have been there but I wasn't able to make it. I was wondering that for the people who couldn't come and listen to you read the little bit of The Scorch Trials(like me) would it be to must trouble for you to post what you read so that we could read it?

Thanks so much!

Alyssa

Eva McGann said...

I got The Maze runner for my 15 year old son for Christmas and he LOVED it. He insisted that I read it too. I just finished and it was great. Thanks for a great read. Can't wait for the next one. As an aside...are you LDS? We are and I would find it very amuzing that I found and LDS writer for my son without even knowing it.

Mark Daymont said...

I completely agree with you, that was a great symposium. I've been attending off and on since the 80'sand this was the largest crowd on Thursday and Friday I've ever seen (including when Scott Card attended!). You did a great job on the panels, I think you have a great ability in interacting with your fans. You did a good job holding your own in the Writing Excuses session!

Laura said...

Julie and I almost ditched the panel we were on so we could hear your reading of Scorch Trials. If we hadn't been sitting in the front of the room behind a table with a microphone, we might have gotten away with it...dang it. No, instead we had a riveting conversation about the fact that it makes absolutely no difference what the current YA trends are. When I say riveting, I mean we kept looking at each other wondering if it wasn't too late to abandon ship to hear you read. Oh well. I guess we did our last moral obligation as panelists. I'm not gonna lie, I think we should have made a break for it instead.

franklycreative said...

I had a great time too. I appreciated you asking how my book was doing. Your encouragement concerning Shadow Mountain was a definite highlight. Thanks for signing my copy of Maze Runner. I finished it this weekend. Great! When is your sequel due to come out?
Thanks again,
Carolyn Frank

Magenta said...

Sounds like you had fun. That article in the LA Times was great! ^_^

Kasie West said...

Oh, and I watched your extended book trailer. It's even better with sound.

Erin G. said...

Dashner, you're such a studly stud! Look at you, in all these papers, with all these followers, and all these movie deals! Good for you! :D

Now I'm really sorry I missed LTUE! It sounds like you had a good time though. I'll have to listen to the podcast when I'm not at work. I definitely want to hear those yahoos and you. ;)

Jake said...

Number one, I must say that you are a great writer. I devoured The Maze Runner. It was a great book. Number two, I have a question for you. Are you still going to be doing a giveaway of the book The Dark Divine. I like to read new and interesting books. Thanks,
Jake

Jenn Johansson said...

I'm with Kasie, demanding is probably a more appropriate description. I loved the Writing Excuses podcast, laughing until your eyes water is good for the soul. :) Thanks for all the fun! See you at the next one.

Jack Porter said...

Hey James, glad I could see you there too.
Completley enjoyed The Scorch Trials and then I got to brag to my friends that I got The Maze Runner signed by you.
Will you be attending LTUE next year? Just would like to know.

-Jackson

Suey said...

I didn't really talk to you this time around but I too had a BLAST! It was great fun. I've done two posts about my experiences if you're interested... a wrap up here and a discussion on Brandon's speech here.

Robin said...

Just finished Maze Runner--loved it! Found the maze game on the book website--lots of screaming... and then I let my young sons play. I've started listening to Writing Excuses (I'm already a fan of the podcasts, and I'm excited to hear your contribution), but have to wait until they go to bed. Speaking of which... I should probably get on that....

Looking forward to meeting you at Storymakers.

Jack Porter said...

Oh, forgot to thank you for signing The Maze Runner, it is now sitting on my headboard, I'm dedicating one of the many bookshelfs shelf to you and your books.

Thanks for giving us many of these books.

-Jackson

Shannon O'Donnell said...

I'm so sad to have missed all the fun, but I plan to make it one day. Besides, I'll get to meet you and soak up your brilliance when you come to Montana! :-)

sakuranoyume said...

This was my first year attending and first year (3 decades late) at BYU, which is how I became aware of LTUE. I got to hear a lot of the banter between the authors on the panels and it reminded me of home (7 opinionated brothers and it's not really love unless you insult one another). Thanks for a great day; oh yes, and some terrific info to boot!

Heather B. Moore said...

Congrats on The Maze Runner mentions!

Dedee said...

The podcast was awesome!

Julie said...

Do you want to know something rather sad? the one day I get in school suspension, is the day that you come to my school! sure, it was a few months ago, but I'm still steamed. Anyway, whens the next time you're popping up in a Utah place so that I can make up for it?

Anonymous said...

Hey I just listened to the podcast. It was both awesome and hilarious. Blew my mind!

L.T. Elliot said...

So glad to have seen you, James. You're the best! And as for Brandon joking with you, it's only because you're so cool. Heather's cake said so!

Wayne said...

Ah, to think back on those summer days in Kensington I was in the presence of greatness... Congrats man, I hope we can catch up sometime.

Danyelle Ferguson said...

Awesome articles, James!

Tiana Lei said...

I really enjoyed the podcast, it was probably my favorite part of the conference. And it was also the first time I've heard of you (please forgive me and my ignorance!)

In the blog panel, you talked about how bloggers could get copies of The Maze Runner to review. I would LOVE to read it! How can I get my grubby hands on one of those copies? This is my blog: Spilled Ink

Tiana Lei said...

Eeek! I gave you the wrong link. Here you go: <a href="http://www.tianalei.com>Spilled Ink</a>

Paul said...

Holy crap it was awesome to see you and hear your comments in the writing excuses podcast. The Scorched Trials reading was great. Thanks for being inspiring.

Debbie / Cranberry Fries said...

K so sad I couldn't practically cross the street and go to this but glad you got to shine there! Also can I just say that you are super awesome for being so attentive to your fans. Man I'm so there at LTUE next year. Off to listen to the podcast.

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