Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Latest on the Author Road

Well, I really enjoyed my last week of taking time off and watching football. Um, I mean, spending time with family and remembering all those things I'm thankful for. This has been quite a stretch without a post, so I will list here a bunch of random things that have happened recently on ye old author journey.

1. The artist, Bryan Beus, completed his 9 full page illustrations for the inside of the book. I've seen them and I love them! I can't tell you how insanely I wish I could show a couple of them on this here bloggy thing, but I can't. My hands are tied on that one. Maybe he'll show it on his website soon.

It's very surreal to see something you've worked on so hard and imagined so often in your mind suddenly come to life visually. It's a very odd and very exciting feeling. It's also a huge relief when you realize that you don't hate it. Especially if, on the contrary, you LOVE it. I think it will add a lot to the experience of reading the final version.

2. My publisher is working with a third party web design company to do the website for my book, which will be http://www.the13threality.com/. Right now it just has the cover with a "coming soon" comment. It sounds like they are going to do some cool things with it. For example, I've written a few riddles for the site that you can solve and win a prize. Also, they might do a monthly contest where kids can make up their own riddles.

Here's an example of one of the riddles, which are meant to be fun and pretty easy:

Count your knees and then add three
Plus your toes but subtract your nose
Your eyes and ears will do just fine
But minus your fingers, all in kind
Count each hair, do it nilly willy
Then subtract them all 'cause that's just silly
Add elbows and shoulders plus eight more
Then finally divide this all by four.

What's the final number?

3. I had a meeting with the marketing team at Shadow Mountain and it was really cool. They basically told me what their plan is, and I left speechless (no small feat). These people somehow make me feel like I'm the most important author in the world and treat me so well that I keep thinking it's too good to be true. I'll tell more in future posts, but here's one thing I'm really excited for: they're sending me to Book Expo America in L.A. from May 29 - June 1 (2008).

4. I also received blurbs (or puffs as my editor calls them) from Brandon Mull (Fablehaven) and David Farland (Ravenspell, Runelords, some Star Wars novels). You know I never brag (hardy har), but I was thrilled that David Farland (real name Dave Wolverton) apologized for taking so long because he refuses to give blurbs unless he reads the whole thing and really likes it. And he gave me one. Sweet! These blurbs, along with Brandon Sanderson's, will all be on the back of the hardback cover.

5. Lisa, my editor, called me while I was literally walking out the door to drive to Arizona last week. She said, in a worried tone, that we have a "problem." You can imagine what happened to my poor little heart. It turned out to be nothing serious, of course. They had miscalculated a bit and had a few blank pages at the end of the book and she didn't want them to be blank.

So she had a brilliant idea, as usual. We decided to put a "snippet" from Book 2 at the end. I delayed my trip a few minutes, ignored the look from my wife, and went upstairs to email Lisa the first chapter. It had been looked at and edited by my critique group, so I felt pretty comfortable giving it to her. She took her favorite section from it, edited, prettied, cleaned, and it will now be at the very end of the book.

6. Finally, one more thing: THE BOOK GOES TO PRESS TODAY!!!!!!!!!!


Kimberly Vanderhorst said...

Of all that, number six is the most exciting! Congrats James!

Author said...

Hey James, I am so excited - I got my ARC today, and it looks great! I can't wait till the kids go down for their naps this afternoon and I can start reading it - as soon as I am finished I will do a blurb on my blog - if that's okay.

P.S. what do you want me to do with the teaser chapters they sent? Pass them out? Just curious how they could be put to best use for you...

LaFemmeSimple said...

I WANT MY ARC *throws hissy fit* lol

Very exciting news James ole' boy! Can't wait to bask in your fame and fortune, er...see you all the time because you're going to be richer than paris hilton and traveling home every month. YAY!!

Oh, I blurbed about ya on my bloggy-blog: http://toddlerdrama.com/2007/11/26/happy-birthday-bro/

Tamra Norton said...

YAY JAMES--How completely exciting! I'm lovin' your little story... And you know my favorite character so far? Edgar! Thank you, Thank You, THANK YOU for writing a father figure I can totally love in a children's book. :)

James Dashner said...

Sarah, aka Sis, you have me deeply confused. You said in another comment that you'd read my book. How'd you read it if you didn't get an ARC? You really didn't get one?

James Dashner said...

Mandi, by all means please blog about it. That's like asking me if you can give me twenty bucks. :-) Thanks!

I'd also love any reviews on Amazon.com and stuff like that.

And yes, the booklets are for you to annoy neighbors with, or give to your local library, use as toilet paper, whatever works.

Tami, I love Edgar, too. My own dad has passed away, and my grandpa's name was Edgar, so it's kind of a double tribute.

Plus, I'm weary of the cliche parents that the main character hates. I wanted to be original and actually have parents that weren't morons.

LaFemmeSimple said...

I read Mom's while home for Thanksgiving :D :D Couldn't wait for my own, just had to read it! It was sitting right there in front of me!


I'm anxious for mine though, so I can re-read and absorb it more. You know me, I read faster than I breathe :D

Luisa Perkins said...

James, it's all so fabulous! Congratulations!

Jeff Savage said...

Congrats dude. I'm jelous as snot. Can't wait to start seeing my art work. You'll knock them dead at BEA.

James Dashner said...

"jelous as snot"

Jeff, my friend, what exactly does that mean? You're a published author? YOU just got an advance? I'm ashamed to know you.

Sis, if you don't get one soon, let me know. I keep hearing of people getting them, so I don't think they all went out at once.