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Dying Earth Giveaway

April 8, 2009 at 6:15 pm
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Want to be the first kid on your block to read all the swell stories in our Jack Vance tribute anthology, SONGS OF THE DYING EARTH??

Well, here’s your chance. Pat’s Fantasy Hotlist is doing it again, offering up an Advanced Reading Copy of the gorgeous Subterranean Press edition, illustrated by Tom Kidd.

To check out the details of the contest, go to:

Good luck. And remember, cheaters will be blasted with the Excellent Prismatic Spray.

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Random Thoughts at Midnight

March 28, 2009 at 12:07 am
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Just a few days left in March. When the month ends, so does our foreign edition sale, so if you want $5 off the foreign translations of any of my books, this is the time to act.

I really don’t know where the time goes. It seems like yesterday I was watching the Superbowl, and a few days before that I was just getting back from Spain and Portugal. The days and weeks and months seem to go by so quickly now… and the pages come so slowly…

Speaking of Spain and Portugal, I meant to post a lot more about my travels there last summer, and to post some pictures too. Another good intention swallowed by the demands of work and the lateness of the hour. I may still post a few things, though. Better late than never, I suppose… and it was a wonderful trip.

I need to post about WATCHMEN (which I loved) and the BATTLESTAR GALACTICA finale (which I pretty much hated) too. In my copious spare time. But I really do have a lot to say about both. The Watchmen/ Wild Cards compare-and-contrast exercise is an essay in itself…

Subterreanean Press sent me an Advanced Reading Copy of the Jack Vance tribute anthology, SONGS OF THE DYING EARTH, a few days ago, and I’ve been dipping into it. I’d read all the stories before, of course, but it’s still fun to revisit them. I even reread my own story, “A Night at the Tarn House,” and thought it held up pretty well. That’s always a relief. Sometimes I hate my own stuff when I reread (sometimes I love it, too, I’m a moody sonofabitch).

I hope Jack Vance likes the book. The impact he’s had on the field, and especially on the writers in the anthology, has been immense.

I’ve also just received a couple of advance copies of the limited edition FEAST FOR CROWS from Subterranean. Oh my, oh my. What a beautiful book. Tom Canty is amazing. FEAST is shipping now. Unfortunately, this is a limited edition, and it was long ago sold out. The lettered and numbered editions of the Vance book are also sold out, but copies of the trade hardcover are still available from the Subterranean website… and the trade will still feature the gorgeous interior artwork by Tom Kidd.

Some cool new stuff from Green Ronin Games as well. Their first Wild Cards adventure, ALL IN, has been released, and so has their new Ice & Fire role playing game. I need to write a story about those for my website news page… so much to do, so little time… but here’s some pictures of the cover art, to whet your taste, at least:

Visit the Green Ronin website for more information for the games.

Oh, and my new Library Tower is almost complete. Another week, and the renovations should all be done. It’s cost a fortune and there’s been a lot of noise and dust and disruption, but it will all have been worth it. The tower is gorgeous. I’ll try to post pictures, if I can ever find my camera. I took it to the Page One signing for BUSTED FLUSH, snapped lots of pics there, brought it home, and haven’t seen it since.


The Library Tower should help with that too. Finally, some organization.

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A Night at the Tarn House

February 4, 2009 at 3:12 pm
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I've just finished correcting the page proofs of "A Night at the Tarn House," the novelette I wrote for the Jack Vance tribute anthology, SONGS OF THE DYING EARTH. Tomorrow they go back to Subterranean Press, where the book is zooming into production. Appears we're looking at an August pubdate, barring unforeseen schedule changes. The limited editions — both lettered and numbered — are already sold out, but copies of the illustrated trade edition, with its gorgeous Tom Kidd artwork, can still be preordered from the Subterranean website at

Some writers actually like correcting proofs, I am told. Not me. I've always found it tedious. When the proofs are full of errors, it makes me wonder if I'm missing some of them, and I worry about mistakes sneaking by. When the proofs are clean, that makes me REALLY nervous and I end up going over the same pages several times, searching for the errors that I'm somehow not seeing.

These proofs were pretty clean, by and large, though I caught a few typos… mostly my own. In the old days before computers, most of the mistakes you found when proofreading were ones that had crept in during typesetting. No longer. These days, ninety per cent of the time, when I find a mistake in the text, it is one I made myself.

I'd read three-quarters of 'Tarn House' weekend before last at CoSine in Colorado Springs, but this was the first time I'd gone through the whole thing since mailing it off to my co-editor, Gardner Dozois. It held up pretty well, I thought. No one writes like Jack Vance but Jack Vance, which made this a rather intimidating assignment… but fun as well. Many of the other writers in the book attempted to recreate Vance's unique style, but I was content just to nod in that direction, and try my best to evoke his world and some of his wit. The readers will be the judge of how well I did, but my hope is that the Vance fans out there will enjoy meeting Molloqos, Lirianne, and the Great Chimwazle (whose name is an obscure Howard Waldrop swipe, I blush to confess) as much as I did writing about them.

And besides, you can't imagine how good it feels to have finished something.

Some writers enjoy writing, I am told. Not me. I enjoy having written.

Vance fans will also want to be sure to pick up the Spring issue of Subterranean's online magazine. Gardner Dozois was the guest editor for the issue, which will feature — among other treats — one of the other stories from SONGS OF THE DYING EARTH: "Sylgarmo's Proclamation," by Lucius Shepard. Consider it an appetizer.

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Vance Book Selling Fast

January 4, 2009 at 8:24 pm
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Just a word to the wise… and all the myriad Jack Vance fans out there. According to the latest news on the Subterreanean Press website, “our mammoth (over 600 pages) tribute anthology to Jack Vance, Songs of the Dying Earth, is preselling exceptionally well. We’re down to the last 50 copies of the signed limited edition, and the trade hardcover is more than half sold out. If you’re game for a copy of this book, we suggest ordering soon.”

To order a copy of your very own, go to

And while you’re there, you can also preorder a copy of Jack’s autobiography, IT’S ME, JACK VANCE, which Subterranean has just announced. I’m looking forward to that one myself.

Speaking of books in short supply, I should also mention that I now down to four (4) remaining pristine copies of the huge, lavishly illustrated GAME OF THRONES rpg book from the defunct Guardians of Order. Once those are gone, only the water-damaged copies will remain. If you want to snag one of these last four, you’ll find the details on the Signed Books / Limited Edition copies of my website.

A lot of people are taking me up on the new year sale for TUF VOYAGING, by the way. Yes, I still have plenty of copies of the regular hardcover. Of the limited, not so much. Order via PayPal. Just use their Send Money function to send payment to me at, and be sure and let me know if you want the book inscribed, or just signed. Thanks.

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Vance Book Delivered

December 8, 2008 at 11:08 pm
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The Jack Vance tribute anthology, SONGS OF THE DYING EARTH, is complete, and has been delivered to our publishers at Subterranean Press, Tor Books, HarperCollins Voyager (in the UK), and Luitingh (n the Netherlands). Other foreign editions will no doubt follow. Jack Vance has a worldwide readership.

My co-editor Gardner Dozois and I are very proud of this one. The Dying Earth is one of the great settings in fantasy, right up there with Howard’s Hyborian Age and Tolkien’s Middle Earth, and it was great to be able to visit there again.

And the Subterranean Press edition, which will feature full-page interior illustrations by Tom Kidd for each story, looks to be especially nifty.

Copies of the limited edition are still available through the SubPress website at

So that’s one project off the plate.

Now all I need to do is wrap up WARRIORS and SUICIDE KINGS and… yes… A DANCE WITH DRAGONS, and maybe I’ll be able to take a week off. (The reason they call them deadlines is because they’re like to kill you).

I’ll keep you posted.

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