Current projects, January 2014.

editing
Every month I make a post to tell folks what I'm working on, a) because it seems polite, b) because it keeps me accountable, if only to myself, and c) so you will understand why I do not have a social life. This is the first such post of 2014, chronicling the January 2014 works in progress.

To quote myself, being too harried to say something new: "These posts are labeled with the month and year, in case somebody eventually gets the bizarre urge to timeline my work cycles (it'll probably be me). Behold the proof that I don't actually sleep; I just whimper and keep writing."

Please note that all books currently in print are off the list, as are those that have been turned in but not yet printed (Half-Off Ragnarok, Sparrow Hill Road). The Winter Long, Symbiont, and Pocket Apocalypse are off the list because they're finished and in revisions with the Machete Squad. The cut-tag is here to stay, because no matter what I do, it seems like this list just keeps on getting longer. But that's okay, because at least it means I'm never actively bored. I have horror movies and terrible things from the swamp to keep me company.

Not everything on this list has been sold. I will not discuss the sale status of anything which has not been publicly announced. If you can't remember whether I've announced something, check the relevant tag, or go to my website, at www.seananmcguire.com. Please do not ask why project X is no longer on the list. I will not answer you.

What's Seanan working on now? Click to find out!Collapse )

The final winners have been chosen.

princess
Sorry about the delay on picking the last two Twelve Days of Hogswatch winners. To apologize, I picked two winners for day twelve. The winners are...

The RNG (and other sillinesses) has spoken, and the winners are...

On the eleventh day of Hogswatch, the RNG gave to nimue_obscure a copy of the UK edition of Parasite.

On the twelfth day of Hogswatch, the RNG gave to tsukara and apocalypticbob the Seanan McGuire Random Crap Swag Pack.

If your name appears above, please proceed to my website contact form and send me your mailing address. I must receive this information within the next twenty-four hours. If I do not, a new winner or winners will be chosen. tsukara and apocalypticbob, please include your preferred shirt/tank top sizes, and whether you'd like a shirt or tank.

Happy Hogswatch, everyone, and to all, I wish you a happy new year.
discount2
...I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'd promise never to do it again, but let's face it, you're going to be hearing this joke a lot over the next several months, frequently from me. So, uh, look, a punny bunny! Anyway:

As of today, we are fifty days from the release of Half-Off Ragnarok, the third book in the InCryptid series, and the first book narrated by Verity's older brother, Alexander Price. It's a little weird for me, since—like Verity before him—Alex gets to narrate two books on his first outing, and I've already finished the second. For me, he's an established protagonist with two complete adventures under his belt, and for you, he's the new kid on the block, taking over from someone many of you have already learned to love. So that's weird. And I'm still a little stunned that I get to write these books in the first place. Like, I can't even articulate how amazing this has been for me.

So where are we right now? Well, I'm gearing up for some more giveaways, some of which will be totally effort-free (RNG 4 LYFE), some of which will require a little more work (fan artists, start your engines). I'm editing book four, and prepping for book five, which is the last on my current contract (subtext: please, please, if you can, if you enjoy this series, buy it, so I can keep going). I'm getting ready for book launch, and looking in awe at the upcoming UK release of book one, and yeah. It's all amazing.

I'm still not sure what I'm going to do as a pre-release countdown this time (or whether I'm going to do one at all). Suggestions are totally welcome! And of course, we'll have another new short story going up on the website around the time the book comes out, featuring another Johnny and Fran adventure. We're coming to the end of their time as the focus of our historical narratives. I'm excited to be moving on Alice and Thomas, one of my all time OTPs, but I'm going to miss Johnny and Fran.

Thank you all, so much. Thank you for allowing me to tell these stories. Thank you for being here. And thank you for buying my books. This was a series that had a very narrow market when it started, and you bought enough copies to make DAW see that it had an audience, and that I should get to continue. Soon, we'll break through the candy shell and expose the true darkness of what people keep assuming is my fluffiest universe. Soon.

I can't wait.

State of the blonde...

midway
...although I suppose that since these days my hair is dyed in a lovely "sunset over the cornfield" ombre, I should probably consider changing that title, huh? Nah. Shan't. I am who I am, and even if I dye my hair black and start being Mira full-time, I'll always be a blonde girl. So! Statuses and such.

Shipping.

I am in the process of packing prizes and purchases and presents to go into the mail. I had a rough couple of weeks, and didn't do the mail when I was supposed to, which means I have a truly daunting amount of mailing to do. I shall persevere, have no worries on that front! It helps that I just got a brand new Ikea shelf for the front room, to act as a shipping supplies/office supplies storage area. I am much more likely to actually cram things into envelopes and send them out in a timely manner if I have easy access to envelopes, rather than needing to rummage through half the back room to find the damn things. (This is part of the overall "declutter the house and make it more easily livable" plan that has been in process for the last month or two.)

Post-Hogswatch cleanup.

So quite a few people who are not regulars around here added me to their LJ friend lists during the Hogswatch festivities, which makes total sense, since who doesn't love a daily giveaway? And now they're subtracting me, sometimes with apologetic little notes, because the giveaways have ended. I just want to remind y'all that doing this is totally cool. I am a voluntary follow zone! Please un-friend me at will, and don't worry that you're going to hurt my feelings. Unless you belong to a very short list of people, all of whom are dear friends who have known me for ages, I will not be upset. I'd be more upset if I learned that you had forced yourself to stick around out of obligation, and consequentially become sad.

Prepping for Boskone!

My first official appearance of the new year will be at Boskone, a Boston-based science fiction convention where I will be appearing as the author Guest of Honor, and more, where my first ever collection of essays and poetry, Letters to the Pumpkin King, will be released. I haven't seen the cover yet, but I'm sure it's going to be gorgeous. More, it's an opportunity to own the contents of my first two (severely out of print) chapbooks. So that's cool. Boskone will be held over Valentine's Day weekend in Boston, Massachusetts, and I hugely recommend swinging by if you're in the area and want to hear me blather about whatever the con winds up telling me to blather on about.

My icon.

Something new is coming in 2014. Step right up and try your luck; a dollar and a quarter buys an all-night pass. Details to come: watch this space for news (but don't bother asking me now, for I won't answer, no, not at all).

Cats.

Mom ran the shop vac on Saturday, to prep for the new Ikea cabinet I mentioned before, and the cats flipped their shit as only cats can do. Two days later, we still feel the echoes of the epic shit-flip. Thomas has been doing sock slides in the hall, Alice is a ball of bale, and Lilly keeps getting confused by the way things have moved, sitting down in the middle of the floor, and keening.

Cats are complicated, and I can't find the reset switch, is what I'm saying here.

Do you wanna build a snowman?

Or ride our bikes around the hall?

There are lines. Please stop crossing them.

indexing
When I posted about depression, I said that I was giving myself comment amnesty; I said that I might not (probably would not) read the comments.

Since then, people have contacted me via email (when they had it), via my old email (which I rarely check), via my contact form, via Facebook, and via my Tumblr, to give me their phone numbers, to tell me not to hurt myself (which I did not threaten to do), to provide crisis hotlines, to make suggestions about medication (which I did not solicit), and in one case, to threaten to report me to the police as a suicide risk if I did not update my blog immediately to show that I was still alive.

Please. Stop. "Comment amnesty" did not mean "work harder to make sure that your words, your well wishes, your specific need to engage with my depression will be heard." I try to keep open dialogs on this blog, and I usually appreciate communication, but right now, this contact is intrusive, and upsetting, and seems to prioritize the needs of the contacting person above mine. Please. Stop.

This is why I do not talk when I am sad.

Now we can cross the shifting sands.

knives
(Note: The following post discusses depression and suicide, quite frankly. If you want to skip it, I will understand. Also, I am calling a preemptive comment amnesty, because I don't know that I can get through whatever comments may be left. Thank you.)

***

I have a pretty good life.

That's not bragging, really. I mean, my life has its problems—it's stressful, I'm tired a lot, I'm a woman in the age of the Internet (which is unfortunately code for "I get some really disturbing hate sent my way for the crime of being outspoken and visible while existing as a non-male"), my foot hurts almost all the time, I worry about my friends—but there's no measuring stick that doesn't put me at "pretty good." I am financially secure enough to do things like take off for Disneyland at a moment's notice, to hug a woman standing as avatar for my favorite cartoon character. I have amazing friends who love me despite myself, and I struggle every day to be worthy of them. I have incredible cats. I sleep in an orange bedroom packed with dolls and books and Disney memorabilia.

I get to write books. I get to tell stories, for a living, and have people read and enjoy them. It's everything I ever wanted my life to be...

...and I spent more than half of 2013 wanting my life to stop.

I have been suicidal, off and on, since I was nine years old. I made multiple suicide attempts when I was a pre-teen and teenager; some came closer to success than others. I have my scars. My last active attempt was made when I was in my mid-twenties, and the friend who drove me to the train station has never forgiven me for making him complicit, in any way, in the attempt to take my life. I do not blame him for this, even as I know that I didn't mean to involve him; I just needed to get to the beach, and thought "hey, I can get a ride," and never stopped to consider what that might mean when he'd found out what I'd done, or worse, if he'd found out that I had succeeded. I couldn't see that far ahead. All I could see was the need to stop, to be over, to not need to do this anymore. Any of it.

A very dear friend of mine described suicidal urges and ideations as a narrowing, and she's exactly right, at least for me. It's not selfishness, not at its heart, because when things get that bad, it's virtually impossible to see continuing as an option. It's like climbing a very high mountain, and then running out of trail. You can't fly. It's not selfish to refuse to sprout wings and try. It would be selfish to stay where you are, to block the trail, to prevent others from climbing on without you.

It seems so much easier to just jump, and get out of everybody's way. It seems like the only logical choice. Selfishness doesn't really enter into it. I sort of wish it did. It would be easier to argue with the little voices, or at least it seems like it would be easier; we're all trained from childhood not to be selfish, and that makes selfishness easier to refute than narrowness. "I won't be selfish" is an easier statement than "I will continue to exist, even though there are no options, even though it will never get better, even though I am a burden to all those around me, even though I am unworthy of love, even though I do not deserve this skin, this sky, this space that I inhabit." And easy is...easy is easy. We want easy. When everything is hard, easy becomes incredibly tempting.

Writing this down is hard.

I didn't tell most people how depressed I was, because I didn't think I deserved my own depression. I have a pretty good life! I have all the things I listed, and more, and saying "I want to die" when I have a pretty good life felt like bragging; it felt like trying to claim a sorrow I had no right to. But depression doesn't give a fuck how good your life is. Depression is a function of fucked-up brain chemistry, and brain chemistry doesn't say "Oh, hey, you made the New York Times, that's cool, I better straighten out and fly right from now on." You can be depressed no matter what is happening around you, rags or riches, perfection or putridity. That does not make you wrong. Depression is a sickness. You can catch the flu at Disney World, and you can be depressed on your wedding day. No matter how good your life is, no matter how much people say they wish they had your problems, you are allowed to be unhappy. You are allowed to seek help. You are allowed to express your needs.

I did not actively attempt suicide in 2013, but that was only because I have had a lifetime of learning how to trick myself. I begged my agent to get me new book contracts. See? Can't die! I have deadlines! I cajoled my best friend into going to Disneyland with me. See? Can't die! I have to make faces with pixies! I accepted anthology invitations and convention invitations and let a lot of television build up on my DVR. Anything to create obligations that I would feel compelled to meet, but which weren't the kind that can overwhelm me. I made a lot of lists. I check-marked and itemized myself through the worst of it, and it worked, but it...it wasn't easy. I don't think it's ever going to be easy.

I am telling you this because I want you all to understand, at least on some level, that depression is not a thing you have to earn: it is not justified by tragedy, it is not created by grief. It can happen to anyone, and everyone has a right to seek help. Everyone has a right to be cared for, and to find a way to widen their options back into something that they can live with. Everyone. Even me; even you.

I would be very sad if I were not here to share 2014 with all of you. I hope—I really, truly do—that all of you will be here to share this beautiful year with me. Even if I don't know you, even if I've never met you or never will, I hope. Selfishness is easier to refute than narrowness, and we need to be here for each other, or those walls will crush the life from us.

I hope none of you have to deal with what I dealt with this past year. If you do, please, remember that you can seek help. You deserve help.

We all do.

The periodic welcome post.

average
Hello, everyone, and welcome to my journal. I'm pretty sure you know who I am, my name being in the URL and all, but just in case, I'm Seanan McGuire (also known as Mira Grant), and you're probably not on Candid Camera. This post exists to answer a few of the questions I get asked on a semi-hemi-demi-regular basis. It may look familiar; that's because it gets updated and re-posted roughly every two months, to let folks who've just wandered in know how things work around here. Also, sometimes I change the questions. Because I can.

If you've read this before, feel free to skip, although there may be interesting new things to discover and know beyond the cut.

Anyway, here you go:

This way lies a lot of information you may or may not need about the person whose LJ you may or may not be reading right at this moment. Also, I may or may not be the King of Rain, which may or may not explain why it's drizzling right now. Essentially, this is Schrodinger's cut-tag.Collapse )

Seanan's award-eligible work for 2013.

pony
Well, it's that time again: time to inform the world "this is what I did last year, please remember me as you begin filling out your nomination forms." It's a strangely nerve-wracking time, combining "everybody does it" with "but people will still yell at me for excessive self-promotion." And I'll be honest: I really struggled with the question of whether or not I should make a post this year. Not because I think I'm going to be nominated for All The Things, but because last year's fun adventure in "she posted twice, BURN THE WITCH" was basically my definition of anti-fun.

At the end of the day, I decided that I will make my posts, as I have always made them; this is my career, and if you don't want to read about it, you don't have to. But I will also acknowledge, and continue to acknowledge, that two posts and a handful of tweets is not excessive self-promotion: it's doing my damn job. I'm going to keep saying that until people stop trying to say otherwise.

Now, on to the work!

Novels.

Midnight Blue-Light Special
Chimes at Midnight
Parasite (as Mira Grant)

Note that the 2013 Velveteen collection was not eligible for most awards, as it contains stories originally published prior to 2013.

Novellas.

"Hook Agonistes" (co-written with Jay Lake)
"We Both Go Down Together"
"How Green This Land, How Blue This Sea" (as Mira Grant)

Novelettes.

"Bad Dream Girl"
"Married in Green"
"Sweet Poison Wine"
"The First Fall"
"Loch and Key"
"Daughter of the Midway, the Mermaid, and the Open, Lonely Sea"
"Forbid the Sea"

Short Stories.

"Laughter at the Academy: A Study in the Development of Schizotypal Creative Genius Personality Disorder (SCGPD)"
"Emeralds to Emeralds, Dust to Dust"
"Homecoming"
"Train Yard Blues"
"Frontier ABCs: The Life and Times of Charity Smith, Schoolteacher"
"Red as Snow"

Best Related Work.

Stars Fall Home (second edition, blue cover)

This one requires a bit of explanation. Basically, the original album was released in 2007, and was the best we could do at the time. For 2013, we remastered all the tracks; re-recorded some of the instrumentals; totally redesigned the liner notes and album art; and added a bonus track. Because encyclopedias and other works which frequently have multiple editions have been eligible in this category in the past, and because more than 20% of the album was changed, I believe it fits the eligibility requirements for this year's award season.

I will make a post later about things I hope we'll remember as the nominating season gets moving, although I'll say now that I would really love it if people would consider Sheila Gilbert for Best Long-Form Editor and John Joseph Adams for Best Short-Form Editor. They make me better. They make a lot of people better.

That's all for now.
sarah
It's time to start the new year off right: with some free fiction.

Ryan and Istas have been getting serious, which means it's time for the two of them to go through one of the most important rituals in a tanuki's life: meeting the parents. Sure, that means flying cross-country with an apex predator crammed into an airline seat, and sure, there's a reasonable chance that Istas will eat a flight attendant, but these are the risks you have to take for love.

Sadly, there are always risks no one anticipated. Like reputations, and prejudices, and the fact that everyone's definition of "monster" is different.

You can download "Black as Blood" now from the InCryptid short fiction page. While this story is best read after "Red as Snow," it should stand reasonably well on its own, providing you have any familiarity with the InCryptid setting. (If you don't, there's a lot of short fiction set earlier in the world continuity also posted on that page. Enjoy!)

This also serves as your discussion post.

Happy new year!

More of the winners have been chosen!

princess
The RNG (and other sillinesses) has spoken, and the winners are...

On the sixth day of Hogswatch, the RNG gave to boobook_owl copies of Discount Armageddon and Midnight Blue-Light Special.

On the seventh day of Hogswatch, the RNG gave to antinomic the German editions of Deadline and Blackout.

On the eighth day of Hogswatch, the RNG gave to Art of Cheatery a copy of When Will You Rise.

On the ninth day of Hogswatch, the RNG gave to mearn4d10 a copy of Deadline.

On the tenth day of Hogswatch, the RNG gave to drpaisley a copy of Blackout.

If your name appears above, please proceed to my website contact form and send me your mailing address. I must receive this information within the next twenty-four hours. If I do not, a new winner or winners will be chosen.

There are two more drawings to come! Happy Hogswatch, everyone!
princess
...a unique Seanan McGuire birthday swag pack, valued at we have no idea, half this stuff was never available for sale.

So Disneyland was a little more exhausting than anticipated, and the eleventh and twelfth days of Hogswatch got pushed back a bit. I'm sorry about that. This is the posting for the eleventh of the Twelve Days of Hogswatch. Each giveaway has different rules, and a different deadline, although all prizes will be mailed on January 9th, because I am bad at going to the post office.

The final giveaway is for a birthday swag pack, assembled by yours truly. It will contain:

* A copy of the art bookmark I designed several years ago for Borderlands. These bookmarks have been gone for years, and have clownfish mermaids all over them. Super cute, and a rare example of my working in full color.
* A Slasher Chicks T-shirt. You get to pick the size, although sizes are limited (it was a very short run), so I can't promise I'll have the one you want. But hey, it would be a rockin' present for somebody else.
* A copy of your choice of Wicked Girls or Stars Fall Home, signed.
* One of the unique, never-for-sale "I'm with the band" passes we make for the Traveling Circus. I don't have passes from all events, but I can check to see if I have a specific title (Seanan books only).

This is a random number drawing with a twist. So...

1. To enter, comment on this post.
2. If you are international, indicate a willingness to pay postage.
3. Explain to me why YOU deserve this birthday gift.

Please remember that all giveaway rules are non-negotiable. Failure to follow the rules of a giveaway will mean that you cannot win, even if the RNG picks you. I will be choosing three finalists, and then letting their arguments sway me to a final winner.

I will choose the winner at 1PM PST on Wednesday, January 8th. I know that's super-tight, but I need to do the mailing.

Game on!
princess
...a copy of Parasite, by Mira Grant (UK edition).

So Disneyland was a little more exhausting than anticipated, and the eleventh and twelfth days of Hogswatch got pushed back a bit. I'm sorry about that. This is the posting for the eleventh of the Twelve Days of Hogswatch. Each giveaway has different rules, and a different deadline, although all prizes will be mailed on January 9th, because I am bad at going to the post office.

The eleventh giveaway is for a copy of the UK edition of Parasite. This is going to be a random number drawing. So...

1. To enter, comment on this post.
2. If you are international, indicate a willingness to pay postage.
3. That's it.

Please remember that all giveaway rules are non-negotiable. Failure to follow the rules of a giveaway will mean that you cannot win, even if the RNG picks you.

I will choose the winner at 1PM PST on Wednesday, January 8th. I know that's super-tight, but I need to do the mailing.

Game on!
princess
...a copy of Blackout, by Mira Grant (US edition).

Welcome to the tenth of the Twelve Days of Hogswatch. I am starting a new giveaway every day between now and my birthday. Each giveaway has different rules, and a different deadline, although all prizes will be mailed on January 9th, because I am bad at going to the post office.

The tenth giveaway is for a copy of Blackout. This is going to be a random number drawing. So...

1. To enter, comment on this post.
2. If you are international, indicate a willingness to pay postage.
3. That's it.

Please remember that all giveaway rules are non-negotiable. Failure to follow the rules of a giveaway will mean that you cannot win, even if the RNG picks you.

I will choose the winner at 1PM PST on Tuesday, January 7th.

Game on!
princess
...a copy of Deadline, by Mira Grant (US edition).

Welcome to the eighth of the Twelve Days of Hogswatch. I am starting a new giveaway every day between now and my birthday. Each giveaway has different rules, and a different deadline, although all prizes will be mailed on January 9th, because I am bad at going to the post office.

The ninth giveaway is for a copy of Deadline. This is going to be a random number drawing. So...

1. To enter, comment on this post.
2. If you are international, indicate a willingness to pay postage.
3. That's it.

Please remember that all giveaway rules are non-negotiable. Failure to follow the rules of a giveaway will mean that you cannot win, even if the RNG picks you.

I will choose the winner at 1PM PST on Tuesday, January 7th.

Game on!
princess
...a copy of When Will You Rise, by Mira Grant.

Welcome to the eighth of the Twelve Days of Hogswatch. I am starting a new giveaway every day between now and my birthday. Each giveaway has different rules, and a different deadline, although all prizes will be mailed on January 9th, because I am bad at going to the post office.

The eighth giveaway is for a copy of When Will You Rise. This is going to be a random number drawing. So...

1. To enter, comment on this post.
2. If you are international, indicate a willingness to pay postage.
3. That's it.

Please remember that all giveaway rules are non-negotiable. Failure to follow the rules of a giveaway will mean that you cannot win, even if the RNG picks you.

I will choose the winner at 1PM PST on Tuesday, January 7th.

Game on!
princess
...the German editions of Deadline and Blackout, by Mira Grant.

Welcome to the seventh of the Twelve Days of Hogswatch. I am starting a new giveaway every day between now and my birthday. Each giveaway has different rules, and a different deadline, although all prizes will be mailed on January 9th, because I am bad at going to the post office.

The seventh giveaway is for the German mass-market paperbacks of Deadline and Blackout. This is going to be a random number drawing. So...

1. To enter, comment on this post.
2. If you are international, indicate a willingness to pay postage.
3. That's it.

Please remember that all giveaway rules are non-negotiable. Failure to follow the rules of a giveaway will mean that you cannot win, even if the RNG picks you.

I will choose the winner at 1PM PST on Tuesday, January 7th.

Game on!

Sitting on the border of a new year.

knives
So it's about six hours to midnight where I am, and I just woke up from a necessary and restorative nap; I think about half the last week has been spent in similar circumstances. I'm starting to take shorter naps, however, and I'm actually beginning to feel halfway rested, which is of deep importance to me.

2013. Well, that happened. In 2013, I made the New York Times List twice, and didn't make it once; I wrote more books than I really care to think about; I wrote more words than I can possibly count. I became the first person to ever receive five Hugo nominations in the same year, and learned how much hate mail that achievement generates (a lot), but didn't so much care when I got my five little silver rocket pins and my one big brass one. I won my second Hugo.

I nearly lost the ability to walk. I'm still getting it back a tiny bit at a time, and the whole process has been painful and upsetting in the extreme. For those of you who have never spent time with me in person, I love to walk. It's my primary exercise, and it's something that I usually do when I need to focus. Having it taken away from me has been horrible and upsetting. Here's hoping 2014 sees me finishing my recovery.

There were no major medical crises in either my family or my home. The cats are doing well, and apart from my foot and one bout of flu in January, this year has been one of my physically healthiest in a long time. I guess that's balanced by mental health; I spent much of 2013 incredibly depressed, and around six months actively wanting to die. Please don't respond to this post with "I'm so sorry" or "oh honey," because I know; there's a reason I didn't talk about it while it was going on. I'm doing better now, for the most part. So, you know. Yay recovery.

In 2013 I released four books: Midnight Blue-Light Special, Chimes at Midnight, Parasite, and Velveteen vs. The Multiverse. I released nineteen short stories, some through anthologies, others via my website. I got self-published fiction onto the Hugo ballot. I started writing poetry again. I didn't write enough fanfic.

I went to Disneyland. I went to Disney World. I hugged my cats. A lot.

So that was the year; it was productive but hard, and I'm ready to be done with it. Roll on 2014, if you would be so kind. I hope you all have the sort of night you dream of, and please, if you do anything, remember to be kind.

We're all we've got.
princess
...a pair of books! Discount Armageddon and Midnight Blue-Light Special could be yours!

Welcome to the sixth of the Twelve Days of Hogswatch. I am starting a new giveaway every day between now and January 6th (the day after my birthday). Each giveaway has different rules, and a different deadline, although all prizes will be mailed on January 9th, because I am bad at going to the post office.

The sixth giveaway is for the US mass-market paperbacks of Discount Armageddon and Midnight Blue-Light Special. This is going to be a random number drawing. So...

1. To enter, comment on this post.
2. If you are in Canada, indicate a willingness to pay postage.
3. That's it.

This giveaway is for US and Canadian residents only. The cost of mailing two MMPs anywhere else is more than the cost of the books, which I just...I can't. I'm sorry, and I'm trying to keep these giveaways as open as possible, but I can't in good conscience do that, either to you (postage like whoa) or to me (you could have just bought the books for that price). Tomorrow's giveaway will be open to all.

Please remember that all giveaway rules are non-negotiable. Failure to follow the rules of a giveaway will mean that you cannot win, even if the RNG picks you.

I will choose the winner at 1PM PST on Tuesday, January 7th.

Game on!
average
The RNG (and other sillinesses) has spoken, and the winners are...

On the first day of Hogswatch, the RNG gave to cailleuch a copy of Half-Off Ragnarok.

On the second day of Hogswatch, after a vicious battle, apricot_tree and beccastareyes fought each other to a standstill, and both won a copy of Velveteen vs. The Multiverse. It's my giveaway, I can do that.

On the third day of Hogswatch, the RNG gave to tiferet a copy of Chimes at Midnight.

On the fourth day of Hogswatch, the RNG gave to deire a copy of Carniepunk.

On the fifth day of Hogswatch, the RNG gave to kittylady a copy of Oz Reimagined.

If your name appears above, please proceed to my website contact form and send me your mailing address. I must receive this information within the next twenty-four hours. If I do not, a new winner or winners will be chosen.

As we continue into the Twelve Days of Hogswatch, please remember that the rules of each giveaway must be followed. I chose one winner who was then rejected because their comment did not follow instructions. Also, please do not ask questions or reply to other people's comments on giveaway posts, as this can confuse the RNG.

More fun to come!
princess
...a copy of Oz Reimagined!

Welcome to the fifth of the Twelve Days of Hogswatch. I am starting a new giveaway every day between now and January 6th (the day after my birthday). Each giveaway has different rules, and a different deadline, although all prizes will be mailed on January 9th, because I am bad at going to the post office.

The fourth giveaway is for a shiny new copy of Oz Reimagined, an awesome anthology I participated in this summer. This is going to be a random number drawing. So...

1. To enter, comment on this post.
2. If you are international, indicate both this and your willingness to pay postage.
3. That's it.

Please remember that all giveaway rules are non-negotiable. Failure to follow the rules of a giveaway will mean that you cannot win, even if the RNG picks you.

I will choose the winner at 1PM PST on Monday, December 30th.

Game on!
princess
...a copy of Carniepunk!

Welcome to the fourth of the Twelve Days of Hogswatch. I am starting a new giveaway every day between now and January 6th (the day after my birthday). Each giveaway has different rules, and a different deadline, although all prizes will be mailed on January 9th, because I am bad at going to the post office.

The fourth giveaway is for a shiny new copy of Carniepunk, an awesome anthology I participated in this summer. This is going to be a random number drawing with a twist, because I am sleepy (that's been happening a lot lately) but still silly. So...

1. To enter, comment on this post.
2. If you are international, indicate both this and your willingness to pay postage.
3. Tell me what position you are applying for on the Midway. Impress me.
4. That's it.

I will choose the winner at 1PM PST on Monday, December 30th.

Game on!
princess
...a copy of Chimes at Midnight!

Welcome to the third of the Twelve Days of Hogswatch. I am starting a new giveaway every day between now and January 6th (the day after my birthday). Each giveaway has different rules, and a different deadline, although all prizes will be mailed on January 9th, because I am bad at going to the post office.

The third giveaway is for a shiny new copy of Chimes at Midnight, the seventh October Daye adventure. This is going to be a random number drawing, because I am sleepy (that's been happening a lot lately). So...

1. To enter, comment on this post.
2. If you are international, indicate both this and your willingness to pay postage.
3. That's it.

I will choose the winner at 1PM PST on Monday, December 30th.

Game on!
princess
...a copy of Velveteen vs. The Multiverse!

Welcome to the second of the Twelve Days of Hogswatch. I will be starting a new giveaway every day between now and January 6th (the day after my birthday). Each giveaway will have different rules, and a different deadline, although all prizes will be mailed on January 9th, because I am bad at going to the post office.

This giveaway is for a shiny new copy of Velveteen vs. The Multiverse, the second volume in the adventures of Velma "Velveteen" Martinez, crankiest superheroine this side of the Mississippi. This is going to be a random number drawing with a twist, because I am silly. So...

1. To enter, comment on this post.
2. If you are international, indicate both this and your willingness to pay postage.
3. Explain your superpower. What is it? How does it work? What are your strengths and weaknesses?

I will choose the winner at 1PM PST on Monday, December 30th, by randomly selecting two heroes and deciding the outcome of a fight. (Note: "my superpower is I can do anything" means you will inevitably be defeated by Squirrel Girl. That's what she's for. Remember that in the Velveteen-verse, cunning and treachery often defeats raw strength.)

Game on!
princess
...an ARC of Half-Off Ragnarok!

Welcome to the first of the Twelve Days of Hogswatch. I will be starting a new giveaway every day between now and January 6th (the day after my birthday). Each giveaway will have different rules, and a different deadline, although all prizes will be mailed on January 9th, because I am bad at going to the post office.

The first giveaway is for a shiny new ARC of Half-Off Ragnarok, the third InCryptid adventure and the first starring Alex Price as our narrator. This is going to be a random number drawing, because I am sleepy. So...

1. To enter, comment on this post.
2. If you are international, indicate both this and your willingness to pay postage.
3. That's it.

I will choose the winner at 1PM PST on Monday, December 30th.

Game on!

A little holiday greeting.

me
'Twas the night before Christmas, and all through my room
Were bunny girls bitching, and portents of doom,
And fairy tale murders and pandemic flu—
My friends hope my holiday dreams won't come true—

And Tara is working on graphics so fine
To help and promote that new novel of mine
(The third in a series I like quite a lot,
Narrated by Alex—please give him a shot).

I'm staying at home for a change and a shot
To catch up on sleep and do what's been forgot,
For changes are coming, and coming so fast,
And it's time that we leave this last year in the past.

Two thousand thirteen is a year nearly spent.
Oh, the things that we did, and the places we went!
I'm still with the agent—now more than five years;
She's my superhero, and I have no fear.

A whole week of Dayes can now sit on your shelves,
With wise-cracking Cait Sidhe and put-upon elves,
Another adventure is coming this year,
Which ought to be good for your holiday cheer.

In March, there's InCryptid, and Rose comes in May,
My Sparrow Hill girl who died so far away,
And then in September, the winter is long,
It's a bright, brand-new verse in my favorite song;

InCryptid and Velveteen, Babylon Archer,
And so many more are prepared for departure
At seanan_mcguire the updates are steady—
I'm keeping you posted. You'd better get ready.

The year yet to come will bring wonders galore,
And I can't start to guess at the great things in store,
So whatever you celebrate when the world's cold,
Be it secular, modern, or something quite old,

I hope that you're happy, I hope that you're warm,
I hope that you're ready to weather the storm,
And I wish you the joys that a winter provides,
All you Kings of the Summer and sweet Snow Queen brides,

And I can't wait to see what the next year will bring,
The stories we'll tell, and the songs that we'll sing.
The dead and the living will stand and rejoice!
(I beg you to rise while you still have a choice.)

The journey's been fun, and there's much more to see,
So grab your machete and come now with me,
And they'll hear us exclaim as we dash out of sight,
"Scary Christmas to all, and to all a good fright!"

Velveteen vs. Hypothermia.

barbie
Title: Velveteen vs. Hypothermia.
Summary: The trials of a formerly retired superheroine are destined never to be done, especially when the heroine in question was foolish enough to agree to spend a year in each of three seasons, all vying for her hand...

Happy holidays!

The door that opened in the fabric of reality had no foundation, no wall to hold it in place or justify its existence...Collapse )

Ten things make a list. Happy Friday!

midway
1. So I already wrote this entry once, and it was long and chatty and fun, and then I hit a button I didn't even realize existed and it all went away. I am thus suddenly grumpy, and my original tone may have changed a bit. Stupid buttons.

2. Amy Mebberson made a thing and you should all go admire it. I ordered mine so fast when it went up for sale that I actually got #1 of 50. That is love.

3. If you don't have a budget line item for Amy's art (which, let's face it, is a weird line item to have in a budget, and yet), take a look at Renee Nault's incredible watercolor mermaids. She has prints and calendars for sale, and has an incredibly diverse undersea world waiting for you to dive in. So pretty. So cool.

4. Starting Christmas Day, and continuing all the way through my birthday festivities, I will be doing a chain of twelve giveaways, for everything from ARCs and printed books to cover flats, posters, and special surprises. Each giveaway will have its own rules; watch this space for details.

5. Omnivoracious posted a super-fun thing about books at San Diego Comic-Con, including a picture of me in my Umbrella Corporation blue dress, standing in front of the Umbrella Corporation red cover for Parasite. I look very smug. You would, too, if that were your cover.

6. Alice and I did the Macarena this morning. I enjoyed it more than she did.

7. The year is almost over, but there are still some fun surprises to come: watch this space for details, and watch the sky for alien invasions. Darn those alien invasions.

8. Zombies are love.

9. I will be making my last pre-Christmas stop at Borderlands Books this afternoon. At this point, anything ordered won't reach you before the holidays, but you can still get signed and personalized books if you contact them before 2pm PST. After that, I don't guarantee another swing-through until sometime in January.

10. Finally for right now, Jill is still accepting donations to fund her surgery. As I said when she first started this campaign, we could buy her a future for Christmas, and that's amazing. If you've been looking for a tip jar to shove a couple of dollars into as a karmic investment for the year to come, please swing by and take a look at her plea.

I hope that you're all having the merriest holiday possible; I hope you're warm and safe and content, even if you're not in a place where you can be happy; I hope you're taking care of yourselves.

Let's get through these holidays together.

Five years of Alice.

alice
Today is Alice Price-Healy Little Liddel Abernathy McGuire's fifth birthday. We did not meet until she was ten days old, but this is the day when she began. I am still so very grateful to her for deciding to do that.

As a kitten, Alice's name was "Ado Annie," and she was a prissy, prissy princess who didn't really care for any of the human suitors who came to visit her litter. Until she met me, and went to sleep on my arm, and I asked in a strangled voice if her breeder (my friend Betsy Tinney) took checks.

It took a good deal more time and conversation before Alice was ready to come home with me, as a sixteen week old fuzzball with firm ideas about the world, her place in it, and my place under her. She was my first Maine Coon, and after the learning curve was behind us, she quickly became one of my best friends.

She is pushy; loud; arrogant; prissy; very stinting with her love, and very particular about who deserves it. She gives affection when she wants to, not when people demand it. She won't eat human food, but she begs for it all the same, only to disdain it with a sniff if allowed to get a closer look. She sits like a human, and likes to hug the remote. She is, as I often tell her, my favorite thing.

Happy birthday, Alice. Let's celebrate a dozen more.

Last call for holiday book buying.

barbie
Hello, world!

This Friday, I am going to go by Borderlands Books to sign anything that is waiting for me to sign it (and that has been paid for, in the case of something that needs to be personalized; I cannot stress enough how important it is to actually pay for things). While I can't guarantee at this point that anything ordered as a holiday gift will get to you before the holidays, I can't say it's impossible, either. So! Do you want to give a signed, personalized book to the person of your choice, after exchanging money for it? Here's how!

1. Contact Borderlands Books (http://borderlands-books.com/) in San Francisco, California. You can contact them by either email or phone; check the website for specific options.

2. Order books! You have to tell them which ones, naturally, and whether you want them signed and personalized, or just signed. Personalized books must be paid for up-front. You can request a specific inscription. Some inscriptions (ie, my phone number) will be refused, although your book will still be signed.

3. While you're at it, order anything else that you'd like to get. I mean, hello, bookstore, and you're already paying for shipping, so why the heck not? May I recommend the new paperback edition of Alex Bledsoe's The Hum and the Shiver? Or Hyperbole and a Half? Or Untold, by Sarah Reese Brennan (sequel to Unspoken)?

4. Give the store any information they need, like shipping address and billing and stuff.

5. The store will contact me, and I'll go in and sign things!

But wait, you cry! What books are currently available?

TOBY: Rosemary and Rue, A Local Habitation, An Artificial Night, Late Eclipses, One Salt Sea, Ashes of Honor, and Chimes at Midnight.

INCRYPTID: Discount Armageddon and Midnight Blue-Light Special.

NEWSFLESH: Feed, Deadline, Blackout, and the Newsflesh box set.

VELVETEEN: Velveteen vs. The Junior Super Patriots and Velveteen vs. The Multiverse.

OTHER: Parasite.

ANTHOLOGIES: The Living Dead 2 (Newsflesh-universe story); Home Improvement: Undead Edition (Toby-universe story); Zombiesque; Westward Weird (Incryptid-universe story); Tales From the Ur-Bar; Human For a Day; The Modern Fae's Guide to Surviving Humanity; Other Worlds Than These; Human Tales; Grants Pass; The Mad Scientist's Guide to World Domination; Glitter & Mayhem; Raygun Chronicles; Carniepunk (Incryptid-universe story); Oz Reimagined; Coins of Chaos (Rose Marshall story).

Because Borderlands does not carry non-fiction, none of the Mad Norwegian Press titles are available from them.

Any questions?

(Post concept gleefully stolen from John Scalzi. I love you, John!)

Current projects, December 2013.

editing
Every month I make a post to tell folks what I'm working on, a) because it seems polite, b) because it keeps me accountable, if only to myself, and c) so you will understand why I do not have a social life. This is the December 2013 current projects post; the next time I make one of these, it will be 2014. These posts differ from the Inchworm Girl posts in that they elaborate on what I am currently doing, but do not list publication dates or appearances.

To quote myself, being too harried to say something new: "These posts are labeled with the month and year, in case somebody eventually gets the bizarre urge to timeline my work cycles (it'll probably be me). Behold the proof that I don't actually sleep; I just whimper and keep writing."

Please note that all books currently in print are off the list, as are those that have been turned in but not yet printed (Half-Off Ragnarok, Sparrow Hill Road). The Winter Long and Symbiont are off the list because they're finished and in revisions with the Machete Squad. The cut-tag is here to stay, because no matter what I do, it seems like this list just keeps on getting longer. But that's okay, because at least it means I'm never actively bored. I have horror movies and terrible things from the swamp to keep me company.

Not everything on this list has been sold. I will not discuss the sale status of anything which has not been publicly announced. If you can't remember whether I've announced something, check the relevant tag, or go to my website, at www.seananmcguire.com. Please do not ask why project X is no longer on the list. I will not answer you.

What's Seanan working on now? Click to find out!Collapse )

On spoilers.

knives
So Chuck Wendig posted his thoughts on spoilers recently. I agree with many of them. There are entire media empires I have chosen to have no truck with because they were spoiled for me so thoroughly before I could start embracing them, as often through the intent of the people doing the spoiling as by accident. There is a whole subculture on Tumblr dedicated to bootlegging new movies the day they hit theaters, so that the very first spoiler-laden animated .gifs can be created. It can get really, really frustrating. While I understand the joy of having an open and enthusiastic discussion of a thing you love, part of me goes "not everyone can go to every opening night, watch every show the second it airs, read every book in ARC form three months before publication." It's just not possible, and in those cases, spoilers can steal a lot of the joy in enjoying a piece of media.

(Not for everyone, naturally. I know people who adore spoilers, and find them an exciting roadmap to what's ahead. I am just as likely to go "welp, that was the greatest hits version of the story, let's go enjoy something new.")

But saying "spoilers are bad" and "spoilers are wrong" seems very...I don't know, privileged? At least to me. I have friends who cannot watch rape. Cannot watch any threat of sexual violence. Cannot handle the use of date rape drugs or other such devices in fiction. I know people who are so severely afraid of spiders that even spiders in movies are not safe for them, or who can't deal with certain forms of bodily harm (eyeballs, sure, but no fingers, no teeth...). Most, if not all, of these people have really good reasons for their fears, and if they don't go around wearing shirts that list them off for your comprehension and enlightenment, that's because it's nobody else's business.

So they seek out spoilers. They look for them everywhere, because a little loss of surprise is worth it for the comfort of knowing a piece of media is safe. I was lucky enough to see Thor 2 early (I love you, Disneyland Annual Pass), and while I refused, for the most part, to be a source of spoilers, one person asked me a very basic "this thing will be triggery for me, does this thing happen" question, and got an answer. Because my desire not to put spoilers out into the world is not stronger than someone else's need for mental peace. I knew why she was asking. Refusing to answer at that point would have been policing someone else's choices, and saying I knew what she needed better than she did.

I will absolutely roll with "involuntary spoilers are bad": I don't want to get spoiled for everything in the universe the second I turn on my computer in the morning. I will roll with "there is a statute of limitations," and while we haven't all agreed on what it is, I stop getting grumpy after a week or so for minor things (it takes longer for big, shocking, "this changes everything" revelations). But we have to remember that for some people, spoilers are safety and self-defense. Spoilers are what makes it possible for them to enjoy media, just like everybody else.

Sometimes, providing spoilers is the only kind thing to do.

Anthology funtimes!

princess
There's some big, big anthology news around these here parts!

First up, and most outside my usual wheelhouse, I am pleased to announce that my story "We Are All Misfit Toys in the Aftermath of the Velveteen War" will be appearing in the anthology Robot Uprisings, edited by Daniel Wilson and John Joseph Adams. The book will be released April 8th, 2014, and I am super excited to be part of a lineup that includes Charles Yu and Cory Doctorow (with whom I will one day conquer the Magic Kingdom and claim it in the name of our dark forces). My story is about toys and children and the dark side of Toy Story, and I think many of you will find it very upsetting. Yay!

On more familiar ground, we have Shattered Shields, edited by Jennifer Brozek and Bryan Thomas Schmidt, featuring a brand new Toby-verse story about the Luidaeg, set during the time of the first big Merlin War, and following Antigone of Albany as she tries to walk the line between faith and family. "The Fixed Stars" will be available November 4th, 2014.

Finally, I have been invited to be one of the contributors for The PaulandStormonomicon, an anthology of very short stories based on and/or inspired by Paul and Storm and their songs. (I am actually very proud of being one of their contributors, since I love their music and seem to have gotten invited on the basis of saying "But what about the LADIES?" when I saw the initial contributor list. It's a small thing. I am still pleased.) The Kickstarter has already reached the level at which the book is guaranteed, and it will be available for sale, but supporting the project is going to be the cheapest way to get it. It's like a pre-order, only not quite.

And that is today's anthology news. Look at all those pretty stories!

Glee.
sarah
...they say have courage and I'm trying to, I'm right out here for you, just let me in.

This is the remaining shape of my 2014, with travel dates and everything. Beautiful travel dates. Hope to see you sometime in the months to come. 2013 is put neatly to bed, with a blanket of stars to pull over its head, and I'll see you so near, and I'll see you so far, and I hope that you're happy and warm where you are.

Publications

"Black as Blood," January 7 (website).
Half-Off Ragnarok, March 4.
"Jammed," April 1 (Games Creatures Play).
"We Are All Misfit Toys in the Aftermath of the Velveteen War," April 8 (Robot Uprisings)
"Knit a Sweater Out of Sky," May 13 (Dead But Not Forgotten).
"Stingers and Strangers," May 13 (Dead Man's Hand).
Sparrow Hill Road, June 3.
The Winter Long, September 2.
Symbiont, November 2014.
"The Fixed Stars," November 4 (Shattered Shields).

"The Happiest Place...," unknown.
"No Sooner Met," unknown.

Conventions/Appearances/Travel

Boskone 51, February 14-16, Boston MA.
FOGcon 4, March 7-9, Walnut Creek CA.
Norwescon 37, April 17-20, Seattle WA.
Loncon 3 (Worldcon 2014), August 14-18, London England.
Shamrokon (Eurocon 2014), August 22-24, Dublin Ireland.

Westercon 68, July 2-5 2015, San Diego CA.

No fixed deadline/being written/unsold:

"The Ghosts of Bourbon Street"
"IM"
"Oh Pretty Bird"
"White as a Raven's Wing"
"Each to Each"
"Best Served Cold"
"Fruiting Bodies"
"Fiber"
"Carry Me Home"
"Pixie Season"
"These Antique Fables"
"The Day the Dead Came to Show and Tell"
Echo
Still Catch the Tide

Again, to clarify some recent confusion: some things, especially novel-length things, may appear more than once, on both the "publication date" and "being written" lists. This is because the "being written" list is an aggregate, which also includes "no fixed deadline" (IE, being written on spec or for the website) and "unsold" (IE, being written because I can). So new books will appear there for a long time before they vanish, since books take a long time to write, but may also have pub dates listed higher up.

Look at that list. It's so shiny!
rose marshall
I am delighted to announce that Hex in the City, an original anthology of urban fantasy from Fiction River, is available now from a retailer near you. (I had to do a search on Amazon for the title in quotes, but it came up with both Kindle and physical editions; I'm sure that other eBook retailers will have it as well.) This collection of all-new fiction includes a first for me: an Istas story.

"Red as Snow" is the story of what happens when Ryan gets introduced to Istas's family, whether he likes it or not. It's the first InCryptid story not to feature either the Price family or Rose Marshall, and I am very well-pleased with it.

You can see Tara's awesome cover for the story here. Enjoy!

This will also, as always, serve as your discussion post.
discount2
I'll be honest here: I haven't been capturing most reviews of late, because the urge to read reviews has declined dramatically over the last six months or so. This may have something to do with the fact that I have at least a hundred unposted, and I'd like to be able to fit my links-in-waiting on a single screen before I die. So I'm hoping that, by doing a few solid roundups, I can get my groove back. This is the first.

My Friend Amy's Blog has posted a review of Deadline, written before the release of Blackout. There are no good pull quotes, although it's a very thoughtful review; there are Feed spoilers and comparisons throughout.

Want Some has posted a review of Feed, and says, " Tl;dr: Not your average zombie fare, highly recommended, part 1 in the Newsflesh Trilogy." I kinda admire the brevity.

Errant Dreams has posted a review of One Salt Sea, and says, "All in all, I found One Salt Sea to be another solid addition to the October Daye series. Its slower emotional pacing (because of the similar kidnapping plot) gave me a chance to sit back and watch changes being played out without the entire combination being too overwhelming." And this is why sometimes, types of case repeat.

Happy Booker has posted a review of Feed, and says, " My masochistic heart can do nothing but rate this book a full 5 stars. I have to commend Mira Grant on how she managed to create such a compelling story and include zombies (which I don't even like btw) and introduce me to these amazing characters that I have no choice but to fall completely in love with and then, without warning, take it all away. I can almost picture the sadistic smile on this author's face as she gleefully ripped my heart out, stomped on it, then poked it a few times with Shaun's zombie stick, leaving me a broken, sobbing mess. Nice, Mira Grant, very nice." Yay!

Finally for today, Morgan and Whitney have dished on Discount Armageddon. Lots of fun, some great points; I recommend taking a look.

Next, the weather.

Existence is its own justification.

knives
The ongoing discussion about diversity in fiction is, well, ongoing; that's sort of what ongoing discussions do. (Also, I have been neck-deep in edits for the past month, so the fact that I used "ongoing" three times in the prior sentence feels deliciously naughty.) On the one side, you have people saying "representation matters." On the other side, you have people saying that the urge for diversity in fiction is "selfie culture" (and somehow that's bad?), and that fiction should show us new things, not just be "a representative of the self," and that it's "jarring" when they encounter "minority characters" who don't somehow fit a list of cultural and social ticky-boxes that would justify those characters existing as anything other than straight, white, male. "Cis" doesn't even need to be spoken. There's no way a trans* character could exist for any reason other than to talk about their genitals, and that would be the ultimate in jarring, thanks.

And people wonder why I spend so much time wanting to set the world on fire.

I think it's very telling that the people who say it's wrong to want representation in fiction are almost overwhelmingly white. If I want to read about white people having amazing adventures and doing incredible things, being heroes and villains, simple and complicated, handsome and hideous, loved and hated, all I need to do is pick up a book at random. There is a literally 90% chance that I will get all those things from whatever book I've chosen, especially if I'm going for the "classic literature" of the science fiction/fantasy/horror world. 90%! And that may honestly be low-balling the number! If I were a straight white man, of course I wouldn't see any issue with representation in fiction—I'd be on every page I turned! Even as a straight white woman, I'd be on a lot of pages, even if half those pages would have me either naked or screaming (or both, if I had happened to grab a Gor book). There's no problem with representation here!

But I've never been a straight white man. I've never been a straight white girl, either. I was a bisexual kid with a lot of questions and not very many answers, and it wasn't until I encountered ElfQuest that I actually felt like I saw myself on a page. No, I didn't think I was an elf, although I sort of wished I was, because elves are awesome, but it was Cutter and Leetah and the rest who introduced me to the idea that I could love boys and girls, and not be a bad person. I wasn't indecisive or wicked. I just had a lot of love to give, and my set of criteria for who got it wasn't based on gender.

Let me restate that: I was already bi. I had already been attracted to girls, guys, and a kid in my class who went by "Pup" and refused to be pinned down to either gender (and my second grade teacher never forced Pup to commit either way, which was pretty damn cool of her, given that this was the 1980s). Books did not make me choose my sexuality; books told me a) that my sexuality existed, and b) that it was okay, it was natural, it was not proof that there was something wrong with me. And especially in grade school/middle school, sexuality is invisible in a way that very little else is. No one knew I was queer until I came out. It wasn't even a matter of openly hiding it; sex wasn't on the table, I didn't feel like sharing, I didn't share. No one knew that I was different. Everyone thought that when they read their books about little white girls having adventures, they were reading about me, too.

You know what's not invisible? Race. "I don't see race" is bull. When we read those books about little white kids having amazing adventures, we knew that it was white kids having adventures, because adventures are for white people. At the age of eight, we all understood that our non-white classmates were not represented in the books we read, and very few of us had the sophistication to jump to "this is a lack of representation." Instead, we jumped to "I guess Oz doesn't like black people." Because books shape your view of the world, books remake you in their image, and the books we had said little white kids go on adventures, little kids of any other race are nowhere to be seen.

This is a problem.

So some of us grew up, and for whatever reason—maybe it affected us directly, maybe it affected our friends, maybe it was just pointed out—we started trying to show a world that looked more like the world we actually lived in, where everything wasn't a monoculture. And for some reason, this is being taken as a threat. How dare you want little Asian kids to go on adventures. How dare you want queer teenagers to save the world. How dare you imply that transwomen can be perfectly ordinary, perfectly competent people who just want to not get eaten by the dinosaur that's been eating everyone else. That's selfie culture, that's diversity for the sake of diversity, that's wrong. And after a great deal of consideration, I have come to this conclusion:

If that's what you think, you can go fuck yourself.

That's not politic, and it's not nice, and it may cause a couple of people to go "what a bitch, I'm done," but I don't fucking care. Because I am tired of people needing to thank me for making an effort. I am tired of receiving email that says it was distracting when so-and-so turned out to be gay, or asking why I have Indian characters in three separate series (and the fact that having an Indian woman show up and never speak a line is apparently enough to put Indexing on the same level as Blackout for some people just makes me weep for humanity). I am tired of "oh you feel like you're so open-minded" because I write about gay people, bi people, poly people, people who are exactly like the people that I know. I want to be unremarkable for my casting choices, and only remarkable for my characters being awesome (because let's face it, my characters are awesome).

A lack of representation in fiction leads to a lack of self-esteem, because selfie culture is important: we need to see ourselves, and the people who keep trying to dismiss that as somehow selfish or greedy or narcissistic are the ones who've had a mirror held up to them for so long that they don't even see it anymore. White becomes so generic, so default, that it's not mentioned when describing a character ("blonde hair, blue eyes" vs. "oh, she's black, of course, that's the biggest thing"). Humanity is huge and diverse and amazing, and saying that only a small, approved sliver of it belongs in fiction is a dick move. If diversity is distracting, it's because it's so rare.

We can fix that.

It's time for holiday book buying!

barbie
So it's, like, holiday time. And stuff. And sometimes this means that people want to give people things they think those people will like, which frequently translates into "here, have a book," because we're all enormous book nerds. Being a person who like, writes books, I am very interested in this phenomenon. Moreover, I'd like those books to be as cool as possible. So! Do you want to give a signed, personalized book to the person of your choice, after exchanging money for it? Here's how!

1. Contact Borderlands Books (http://borderlands-books.com/) in San Francisco, California. You can contact them by either email or phone; check the website for specific options.

2. Order books! You have to tell them which ones, naturally, and whether you want them signed and personalized, or just signed. Personalized books must be paid for up-front. You can request a specific inscription. Some inscriptions (ie, my phone number) will be refused, although your book will still be signed.

3. While you're at it, order anything else that you'd like to get. I mean, hello, bookstore, and you're already paying for shipping, so why the heck not?

4. Give the store any information they need, like shipping address and billing and stuff.

5. The store will contact me, and I'll go in and sign things!

If you want your book or books shipped in time for Christmas, you need to contact the store and place your order by December 12th. That's still not a guarantee, especially if you're in like, England, but at least it's a ballpark.

But wait, you cry! What books are currently available?

TOBY: Rosemary and Rue, A Local Habitation, An Artificial Night, Late Eclipses, One Salt Sea, Ashes of Honor, and Chimes at Midnight.

INCRYPTID: Discount Armageddon and Midnight Blue-Light Special.

NEWSFLESH: Feed, Deadline, Blackout, and the Newsflesh box set.

VELVETEEN: Velveteen vs. The Junior Super Patriots and Velveteen vs. The Multiverse.

OTHER: Parasite.

ANTHOLOGIES: The Living Dead 2 (Newsflesh-universe story); Home Improvement: Undead Edition (Toby-universe story); Zombiesque; Westward Weird (Incryptid-universe story); Tales From the Ur-Bar; Human For a Day; The Modern Fae's Guide to Surviving Humanity; Other Worlds Than These; Human Tales; Grants Pass; The Mad Scientist's Guide to World Domination; Glitter & Mayhem; Raygun Chronicles; Carniepunk (Incryptid-universe story); Oz Reimagined; Coins of Chaos (Rose Marshall story).

Because Borderlands does not carry non-fiction, none of the Mad Norwegian Press titles are available from them.

Any questions?

(Post concept gleefully stolen from John Scalzi. I love you, John!)

Dec. 3rd, 2013

princess
"There are no banks to rob in this painted doll of a dustbowl fantasy town; the money is all bits and bytes stored in a computer vault no human hands can open, whether they belong to banker or bandit. But there are other forms of thievery to be practiced by the quick and the clever, and Cherry is both, when she sees call to be..."

—from "Frontier ABCs: The Life and Times of Charity Smith, Schoolteacher."

I am delighted to announce that Raygun Chronicles is available now from a bookstore near you (although here is a handy sales link, if you need one). Featuring my story, "Frontier ABCs," this is a collection of stories in the high-pulp space opera tradition, and I couldn't be happier to be a part of it.

It's especially exciting, and sobering, to be in an anthology with A.C. Crispin, who has been a hero of mine since I was a child, and who passed away before this book could be completed. I probably won't ever be in an anthology with her again. This is an honor. I just wish it were a sweeter one.

Check out Raygun Chronicles for the space fan in your life, whether it be you, or someone that you love, and shoot for the stars.

Just mind the stars don't shoot back.

Blame Canada...for this AWESOME PARTY!

me
Hey, people of Earth (and parts beyond)! Remember that this coming weekend I will be the Author Guest of Honor at SFContario, appearing with such luminaries as David Kyle and Chandler Davis. I alone lack that essential "davi" construction: come to shore me up, lest I be destroyed.

I'll be doing an awesome concert Friday night, and there will be awesome things throughout the weekend; if you're in the Toronto area, please consider swinging by to get a little awesome on your shoes.
barbie
Title: Five Moments In a Life That Never Was.
Rating: PG.
Fandom: Doctor Who.
Synopsis: Five snapshots of Susan Foreman, later Susan Campbell, daughter of Gallifrey. Written ages ago, and re-posted in honor of the 50th. Thanks to khaosworks for fact-checking.

When she sleeps, her name isn't Susan. When she sleeps, her name is something long and liquid...Collapse )

SPARROW HILL ROAD cover reveal.

rose marshall
Psst. C'mere.

So it's no secret around here that I love, love, love my DAW covers, or that showing them off is one of my true pure joys in life. Aly Fell, who designs the covers for the InCryptid books, has been everything I could have hoped for in a cover artist. He's incredible. Want proof?

Go ahead. Take a peek.

Cut-tagged for the protection of your friends' list, which really doesn't need something this huge suddenly showing up without warning. But trust me, you should totally click.Collapse )
princess
Thanks to the efforts of my covers-and-conversion squad (Tara and Will), I have a new InCryptid short available on my website.

So it turns out all that sex at White Otter Lake had some effect after all: Fran is eight months pregnant and Johnny is about to head for Gentling, Maine to help the locals with an undefined problem. Fran never met an undefined problem she didn't want to throw knives at, and Johnny finds himself crossing the continent with a pregnant wife, a colony of talking mice, and a massive ancestral guilt trip—because the residents of Gentling aren't human, and the Covenant of St. George was not kind to them. Mermaids and mysteries abound as this latest adventure gets underway.

You can download "We Both Go Down Together," and earlier free stories, here:

http://seananmcguire.com/icshorts.php

Please download and read locally, for the sake of my server.

This post will serve as the discussion post, if anyone wants to talk about the story once they're done. Thanks again to everyone for reading.

Current projects, November 2013.

editing
Every month I make a post to tell folks what I'm working on, a) because it seems polite, b) because it keeps me accountable, if only to myself, and c) so you will understand why I do not have a social life. This is the November 2013 current projects post. These posts differ from the Inchworm Girl posts in that they elaborate on what I am currently doing, but do not list publication dates or appearances.

To quote myself, being too harried to say something new: "These posts are labeled with the month and year, in case somebody eventually gets the bizarre urge to timeline my work cycles (it'll probably be me). Behold the proof that I don't actually sleep; I just whimper and keep writing."

Please note that all books currently in print are off the list, as are those that have been turned in but not yet printed (Half-Off Ragnarok, Sparrow Hill Road). The Winter Long and Symbiont are off the list because they're finished and in revisions with the Machete Squad. The cut-tag is here to stay, because no matter what I do, it seems like this list just keeps on getting longer. But that's okay, because at least it means I'm never actively bored. I have horror movies and terrible things from the swamp to keep me company.

Not everything on this list has been sold. I will not discuss the sale status of anything which has not been publicly announced. If you can't remember whether I've announced something, check the relevant tag, or go to my website, at www.seananmcguire.com. Please do not ask why project X is no longer on the list. I will not answer you.

What's Seanan working on now? Click to find out!Collapse )
sarah
...if you hurry you can still catch the tide.

This is the remaining shape of my 2013, with travel dates and everything. Beautiful travel dates. Hope to see you sometime in the months to come. The bulk of the list is now 2014, as we are sailing blithely on into its bright and unknown harbors.

Short stories appearing in anthologies or magazines will have the name of the anthology/magazine following the release date in italics. If there is no anthology/magazine listed, the story is either a website freebie or the publication has not yet been announced.

Publications

"We Both Go Down Together," November 19 2013.
"Frontier ABCs: The Life and Times of Charity Smith, Schoolteacher," December 3 2013 (Raygun Chronicles).
"Red as Snow," December 2013 (Fiction River).

Half-Off Ragnarok, March 4 2014.
"Jammed," April 1 2014 (Weird World of Sports).
"Knit a Sweater Out of Sky," May 13 2014 (Dead But Not Forgotten).
"Stingers and Strangers," May 2014.
Sparrow Hill Road, June 3 2014.
The Winter Long, September 2 2014.
Symbiont, October 28 2014.

"The Happiest Place...," unknown.
"No Sooner Met," unknown.
"The Fixed Stars," unknown.

Conventions/Appearances/Travel

SFContario, November 29-December 1 2013, Toronto Canada.

Boskone 51, February 14-16 2014, Boston MA.
FOGcon 4, March 7-9, Walnut Creek CA.
Emerald City Comicon, March 28-30, Seattle WA.
Norwescon 37, April 17-20, Seattle WA.
San Diego International Comic Con, July 24-27, San Diego CA.
Loncon 3 (Worldcon 2014), August 14-18, London England.
Shamrokon (Eurocon 2014), August 22-24, Dublin Ireland.

Westercon 68, July 2-5 2015, San Diego CA.

No fixed deadline/being written/unsold:

"Blocked"
"The Ghosts of Bourbon Street"
"IM"
"Oh Pretty Bird"
"Forbidden Texts"
"Help Us Bring About an Eternal Halloween"
"Each to Each"
"Fruiting Bodies"
"Fiber"
"Carry Me Home"
"Pixie Season"
"These Antique Fables"
Echo
Still Catch the Tide

Again, to clarify some recent confusion: some things, especially novel-length things, may appear more than once, on both the "publication date" and "being written" lists. This is because the "being written" list is an aggregate, which also includes "no fixed deadline" (IE, being written on spec or for the website) and "unsold" (IE, being written because I can). So new books will appear there for a long time before they vanish, since books take a long time to write, but may also have pub dates listed higher up.

Look at that list. It's so shiny!
wicked
I have mailed ALL THE POSTERS! (I am in the process of mailing ALL THE THINGS, but that's taking more than one trip to the post office.) Any and all "Wicked Girls" posters which have been bought and paid for have finally, finally been mailed, and I still have poster tubes! So:

Behold the poster thumbnail!



You can't really read the text at this size, but it's the full lyrics of "Wicked Girls Saving Ourselves." You can tell that the posters are absolutely gorgeous, thanks to the ever-wonderful graphic skills of my lovely lady Tara. They're 10" by 26", and I couldn't be happier with them.

The posters have a limited run of 500, which sounds like a lot, and yet is shrinking at a truly impressive rate. They aren't programmed into the ordering system on my website, and that's a good thing, since it gives me flow control and allows me to refuse orders when I'm not up for mailing. If you wanted to order a poster, here's what to do:

1) Send me an email via my website contact form, telling me how many posters you want, of which kind(s). Standard posters are $20, plus $5 for shipping and handling within the United States ($13 shipping and handling internationally, for which I apologize, but the costs are obscene).

2) I can fit up to three posters in a tube, going to the same place. So three to one location is cost of posters + $5/$13, while three going to three locations would be cost of posters + $15/$39.

3) I will email you to confirm the request, and to provide my PayPal information. I can only take personal PayPal (no credit cards), although we can discuss payment by check.

The posters are printed on sturdy, acid-free, recycled paper, and again, gorgeous. They also frame really, really nicely, as my living room wall can attest. I'm not currently planning to reprint this design; when they're gone, they're gone, and will be replaced by something else (probably a poster based on either "Follow Me Down" or "Stars Fall Home").

Yay for pretty things!

Social media saturation.

knives
There's a trend I've been noticing lately: everything is suddenly everywhere. I think this may have something to do with the emails I receive daily that are literally checklists of every social media site in existence, complete with a handy "be sure to like this here! Be sure to tweet about this here! Be sure to make a witty Tumblr post complete with reaction .gif here! Be sure to..." and I don't know what comes after that, because I have already deleted the email and gone off to interact with something less exhausting. I have enough trouble remembering to promote myself; I can't take on the responsibility of promoting everything I come into contact with.

It feels like the signal to noise ratio is getting skewed; everything is a sea of signal boosts and endorsements and link-backs and that's lovely, if they're things that you support and believe in. I try to post and tweet and yes, Facebook and the rest about things that I care about. But I don't care about everything in the universe. That would be exhausting.

I wonder if we're just all drowning, and thus all afraid of being overlooked. Whatever it is, I admit I'm getting a little tired of being told how to use my social media. "People will be more likely to notice this if you tweet it!" Well...yes. But then they're less likely to notice my awesome Pokemon.

Everything's a trade-off.
pony
There's always a little bit of awkwardness when a friend says "hey, will you read my new book?" They are, after all, your friend, and while you might well have sought out that book on your own to get to know your friend a little better, once they actually know you're reading it, then they might find out if you hate it. You might make them sad. (There is no perfect answer for this awkwardness, and I have generated it in my friends more than once when asking for blurbs. So saying "hey, will you read my new book?" is not a bad thing. It's just a fraught thing.) Consequentially, when KB Spangler sent me a copy of her first full-length novel, Digital Divide, I was at once happy—my friend wrote a thing!—and nervous—OH GOD MY FRIEND KNOWS I'M READING A THING. I waited a while before I started reading, is what I'm trying to say here, and finally grabbed it to keep me company on my book tour.

I am so glad I did. Digital Divide is the best book I've read in 2013. It's smart, savvy, endlessly entertaining, and gloriously smart, with a protagonist who really explores the line between humanity and technology. Rachel Peng is a half-Chinese, ex-Army, lesbian cyborg who just happens to be blind (a fact which she compensates for and conceals using clever cyborg trickery). None of these things define her. They inform her, they shape who she is, but what defines her is her own fierce brilliance, stubborn independence, and unwillingness to back off when there's ass to be kicked. If I have any regrets about Rachel Peng, it's that we're unlikely to ever see her front and center on a multiplex screen, cracking wise before she shoots somebody's kneecaps off. And we should. Rachel Peng is a bad-ass for the digital age.

There is one word of caution I should put down at this point: Digital Divide is a tie-in to KB Spangler's ongoing webcomic, A Girl and Her Fed; the two share a universe and several characters, although the main characters of Digital Divide are only side characters in the webcomic, and vice-versa. Because I read both, I can't promise the initial setup in Digital Divide wouldn't be slightly confusing for the uninitiated. That said, I think any initial confusion would pass quickly, done in by strong logic and a solid story.

If you want a book with a strong woman of color protagonist who is never belittled because of or reduced solely to the trappings of her gender, with a diverse, engaging supporting cast, with people of all sexualities and identities, and with an incredible amount of snark that never crosses the line into feeling forced, I urge you to pick up Digital Divide. Still not sure? Like most webcomics, A Girl and Her Fed is free to read; you can start there, get a feel for the writing, and then pick up a copy (available both digitally and in dead tree form).

Digital Divide. For those who want their awesome to be open to everyone.

PARASITE open thread!

zombie
To (somewhat belatedly) celebrate the release of Parasite, here. Have an open thread to discuss the book.

THERE WILL BE SPOILERS.

Seriously. If anyone comments here at all, THERE WILL BE SPOILERS. So please don't read and then yell at me because you encountered spoilers. You were warned. (I will not reply to every comment; I call partial comment amnesty. But I may well join some of the discussion, or answer questions or whatnot.)

You can also start a book discussion at my website forums, with less need to be concerned that I will see everything you say! In case you wanted, you know, discussion free of authorial influence, since I always wind up getting involved in these things.

Have fun!

The periodic welcome post.

average
Hello, everyone, and welcome to my journal. I'm pretty sure you know who I am, my name being in the URL and all, but just in case, I'm Seanan McGuire (also known as Mira Grant), and you're probably not on Candid Camera. This post exists to answer a few of the questions I get asked on a semi-hemi-demi-regular basis. It may look familiar; that's because it gets updated and re-posted roughly every two months, to let folks who've just wandered in know how things work around here. Also, sometimes I change the questions. Because I can.

If you've read this before, feel free to skip, although there may be interesting new things to discover and know beyond the cut.

Anyway, here you go:

This way lies a lot of information you may or may not need about the person whose LJ you may or may not be reading right at this moment. Also, I may or may not be the King of Rain, which may or may not explain why it's drizzling right now. Essentially, this is Schrodinger's cut-tag.Collapse )

Boozimahol with Mira Grant!

me
Hey, folks! Sorry I'm so quiet right now—I'm still trying to dig myself out from under the epic flood of crap relating to my book tour—but I thought you might like to know what I'm doing tomorrow night. Namely...

Writers With Drinks! Come out, drink booze, meet awesome authors, and hear me read something (assuming I don't start drinking early and dip into my stand-up act, which would be funny but dangerous).

If you're in the Bay Area, come out and get your drink on! If you're not, I will be dropping by Borderlands Books before the event, and can sign and personalize anything that's waiting for me there. I cringe saying this, but: holiday shopping takes time, and you can skim a little off the top by contacting Borderlands, who will shove things in front of me and then mail them to you, no fuss, no muss.

Well. Maybe a little muss. But only a little.

See you tomorrow night!

Latest Month

April 2014
S M T W T F S
  12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
27282930   

Tags

Page Summary

Syndicate

RSS Atom
Powered by LiveJournal.com
Designed by Tiffany Chow