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Wild Cards Times Two

June 30, 2011 at 1:15 pm
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FORT FREAK is here!

The latest volume in the Wild Cards series was released on June 21, while I was touring and signing in Poland. You can pick up a copy now from your favorite local bookstore, or order one from your favorite online retailer.

After the wide-ranging global storylines of the Committee triad, FORT FREAK returns to New York City, the epicenter of the Wild Cards universe, to tell the stories of the cops and crooks of the historic 5th precinct of the NYPD !” the Jokertown precinct.

The lineup this time around includes stories by Wild Cards veterans Melinda Snodgrass, Stephen Leigh, John Jos. Miller, Kevin Andrew Murphy, and Victor Milan, and introduces newcomers (new to Wild Cards, at least) Cherie Priest, David Anthony Durham, Mary Anne Mohanraj, Ty Franck, and Paul Cornell. You can check out a sample of Cherie’s interstitial, the literary mortar that holds all the bricks together, on my website… and read Melinda’s story, “The Rook,” on at

So come meet Ramshead, the Rook, Tabby, SlimJim, Abigail the understudy, Sgt. Squinch, Ratboy and Flipper, Tinkerbill, the Infamous Black Tongue, Natya, Maggie Graves, Puff, Beastie, Dr. Dildo, and the other colorful denizens of Fort Freak and environs. Old-timers like Father Squid, the Sleeper, and the Oddity also turn up to enliven the proceedings.

Also… some more good news for the Wild Cards fans out there. The seventeenth volume in the series, John Jos. Miller’s novel DEATH DRAWS FIVE, was released in hardcover just a week before its publisher (iBooks) went bankrupt, and very few copies ever made it to market. As a result, this volume of the series has been near impossible to find, commanding huge prices from dealers on the secondary market.

But at long last Brick Tower Press, who acquired many of the assets of iBooks in the bankruptcy proceedings, has released a paperback edition. It’s available on Amazon at

and may also be turning up at some local bookstores.

DEATH DRAWS FIVE is a tale of fists, faith, and armageddon in America’s heartland, the novel features John’s asskicker ace Billy Ray (aka Carnifex), the long-time fan favorite Fortunato and his son John Fortune, and the shape-shifting private dick Mr. Nobody, along with John Nighthawk, the Midnight Angel, and a host of other new characters. In many ways it is the last of the “original series” of Wild Cards, before the introduction of the “next generation” cast featured in INSIDE STRAIGHT and subsequent volumes.

So for all those readers who have been looking to fill the hole in your Wild Cards collection, here’s your chance to complete your sets.

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WARRIORS Wins Locus Poll

June 29, 2011 at 10:30 am
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I’m delighted to announce that WARRIORS, the gigantic cross-genre anthology that I co-edited with my old friend Gardner Dozois, has won the Locus Award as the Best Anthology of 2010.

The award is given by LOCUS magazine, the PUBLISHER’S WEEKLY of science fiction and fantasy, and is decided by an annual poll of of the magazine’s readers. You can check out the full results on here:

Gardner and I are very proud of WARRIORS, our tilting-at-windmills attempt to smash down some genre barriers, and we’re thrilled to see it cop this prize over some terrific competition, all of them pure SF and fantasy. My thanks to all our contributors, who helped make the book what it is. Without them, WARRIORS would be… well, a big book of blank pages. And thanks as well to Tom Doherty, Patrick Nielsen-Hayden, and all the other folks at Tor.

In other categories, Neil Gaiman took home the prize for Best Short Story for “The Thing About Cassandra,” originally published in another of the anthologies that Gardner and I have edited, SONGS OF LOVE AND DEATH. Congratulations to Neil. A well deserved award for a great story.

In novella, my own contender “The Mystery Knight” was among the finalists, but lost out to Ted Chiang’s “The Lifecycle of Software Objects.” Tough competition, that. Congratulations to the winner… and don’t worry, Dunk & Egg will have other chances in the years to come.

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A Day in Slovenia

June 29, 2011 at 8:06 am
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Some highlights from my recent visit to Slovenia. From Aljaž Potočnik, who followed us around for most of the day.

The news article is in Slovenian, but the video features me speaking English. (What else? That’s all I speak). Bits from my introductory Slovenian press conference and my signing in Koper (the small one, not the monstrous one in Ljubljana) are included… along with highlights of my visit to the amazing Predjama Castle, which appears to double as the Slovenian version of Graumann’s Chinese Theatre as well as being an astonishing fortress-in-a-cave.

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Amazon Screws the Pooch

June 29, 2011 at 7:57 am
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People are posting all sorts of off-topic comments on my Miss USA post, below, so I am going to close that one and address the news about here.

Yes, I know, Amazon Germany screwed up big time and started shipping A DANCE WITH DRAGONS before they were supposed to. I am told that about 180 copies got out before they were made aware of their mistake and shut down shipping.

I am not happy about this. My publishers are furious.

If we find out who is responsible, we will mount his head on a spike.

Some other retailers are making noises about releasing their own stocks early, using the Amazon error as a justification. They are not supposed to do this. If you hear of anyone actually selling or shipping copies in advance of the publication date, please inform me ASAP.

I know that the 180 readers who got advance copies are happy about this, but I assure you, my publishers are not. And thousands of other readers are now getting spoiled, most quite inadvertently and unwillingly, as they stumble over the spoilers cropping up everywhere on the internet. (Some of the spoilers being posted are false, by the way). Most of those “lucky” 180 are keeping mum, to be sure, but there are always a few jerkwads in any group, and those are the ones who cannot keep their mouths shut.

A mess all around.

All I can say is, pfui.

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Carrie Vaughn Writes Wraith

June 28, 2011 at 8:31 am
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Wild Cards fans take note… is now offering a free read of Carrie Vaughn’s “Ghost Girl Takes Manhattan,” one of the three brand-new originals in the new edition of WILD CARDS (volume one). You can find it here:

Wraith AND the Sleeper… what more could you want? So what are you waiting for?

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Hurrah for Miss USA

June 27, 2011 at 8:43 am
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Gotta love the new Miss USA:

Not only is she is a self-proclaimed “history geek” and GAME OF THRONES fan, but she was one of only two finalists in the contest to come out for teaching evolution in public schools.


Just goes to show. Fantasy fans and history geeks are much smarter than your average beauty pagaent contestant.

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Home Again

June 26, 2011 at 12:20 pm
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An endless day of travel yesterday. Most of it pretty good, but exhaustion did catch up with me during the last few hours, especially when American Eagle kept delaying the last leg of our journey, from Chicago to Albuquerque.

Our last day in Slovenia was wonderful. Our hosts took us up to Bled, and showed us a couple of castles and a magnificient Victorian era hotel right on the lake, where I really want to stay some time. Our genial host was the mayor of Bled, who regaled us with all the wonderful tales of his town and region. And I was given some truly gorgeous gifts…

Then we had lunch at Marshall Tito’s villa before returning to the airport and flying back to Warsaw (by way of Munich!). Overnight at the Warsaw airport Marriott, the off to Chicago and the next morning. We shared the Marriott with some kind of wheelchair fencing championship, which made for some colorful sights as we were leaving.

A great trip. You Slovenian and Polish fans are wonderful. Thanks for everything.

Now I would like to sleep for a week… but alas, I can’t. Too much work to do.

So back to it.

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Alive and Kicking…

June 24, 2011 at 12:09 am
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… but feebly, feebly.

Last night’s signing in Ljubljana drew 2000 (rough estimate). How I survived I will never know. If I did. I want to sleep for a week. My hand is fine (thanks for asking), but my brain has turned to mush. I want to sleep for a week. Instead I have another interview in an hour. And sometime later today Ty and I begin the long process of flying home. Which has already grown longer and more complicated thanks to the cancellation of the flight that was to be the first leg of our homeward journey…

But never mind.

Thanks to everyone who came out. You were wonderful. And amazingly patient. Standing in line for five hours for my illegible scrawl is an act of valor.

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In Slovenia

June 23, 2011 at 12:17 am
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Arrived from Warsaw yesterday, checked into our hotel, and immediately did a press conference and a zillion interviews. Late afternoon, it was time to head to Koper on the Adriatic, where I did my signing. Huge friendly turnout, including nt only Slovenes, but also fans from Croatia, Italy, and even Austria. I signed and signed…

On the way home, we stopped at the most amazing castle, built into the mouth of a huge cave. Definitely have to model some castle in Westeros on this one, it was an eyefull, especially by night. I was given a personal tour, presented with a beautiful illuminated scroll, and asked to pres ny hands into wet cement, ala Mann’s Chinese Theater. And then we had the most amazing medieval Slovenian feast.

Didn’t get back to the hotel until well past midnight, but it was an experience I will long treasure.

Today I do more interviews, and another signing, this one right here in Ljubljana. We’re expecting an even bigger turnout.

It’s all good. But boy, am I tired.

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Back to Warsaw

June 20, 2011 at 11:40 pm
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The morning after. Still recovering from last night’s signing at Posnan, which was massive. The line went up the stairs and out the door, and at times I thought it would never end. The last folks in the queue must have waited three and a half hours. Sorry if I seemed half dead by the time you reached me. It was mostly because I WAS half dead.

If you missed the signing, well, I signed a few boxes of hardcovers for the Zysk bookstore just off the Old Market Square, so you still may be able to snag one if you get there soon.

Things are better on the tech front. Email working again, thank god. Cell phone too… at least till I burned up all the minutes, which seemed to take all of half of a call. But I feel back in the world again.

In a few hours we will be hitting the road for a return to Warsaw. No more public events there, just a dinner with my agents. Then it’s off to Slovenia.

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