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What Happens to a Debut Author’s Brain on #Amazonfail

[Soft lights up on a small messy room. BLAKE lies sleeping fitfully on mattress with a unlikely tangle of sheets. Down stage and to the right of the bed lies THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY.]

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: [quivering as it speaks] Blake…wake up.

BLAKE: Zzzzz…mMrmmmm…zzzz.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: [harshly] Blake!

BLAKE: Zzzz…Huh? Who’s there?

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Over here.

BLAKE: Protean pile of cleaned but unfolded laundry?

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: No! I am THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY.

BLAKE: Holy SHIT!

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Yeah…so, no need to overreact.

BLAKE:  Overreact?

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: With the profanity…and all that.

BLAKE:  Profanity?

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: You know: the S-word.

BLAKE: Wait, so what would you say is the appropriate level of reaction when realizing that the principle concept that manifests, perpetuates, and governs the illusion and dream of the phenomenal universe has chosen several of my cleaned boxers as its avatar.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Could we not use the word ‘avatar?’

BLAKE: Wait, why?

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Everyone thinks it refers to those giant sexy blue people in that James Cameron movie.

BLAKE: But you’re the universe incarnated. You’re an avatar!

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: I haven’t got the abdominal muscles for it.

BLAKE: Or the hip to waist ratio.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Oh, it burrrns!

BLAKE: … Sorry.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Seriously though, do your jeans make me look fat?

BLAKE: Not from this angle.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Good. Anyway, I’m here to talk about #AMAZONFAIL!

BLAKE: Holy SHIT!

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: There you go again.

BLAKE: Oh, right…sorry. But are you really here to talk about #Amazonfail?

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Yes!

BLAKE: Why?

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Blake, what do you feel about #Amazonfail?

BLAKE: The same way a diaper feels about its baby?

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Diapers don’t feel.

BLAKE: Okay, a sentient diaper. But, you got to understand: I’m 26 days, 4 hours, 15 minutes away from publication and Spellwright still isn’t available on Amazon.com. Not that I”m counting the days…or anything…hours and minutes neither.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: But is it not still available from Borders, B&N, Powell’s, Indiebound, and signed copies from The Signed Page?

BLAKE: Well…yes.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Blake, your desire to be on sale on Amazon.com is the source of all your suffering.

BLAKE: But they sell so many books.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Did you know that Paolo Bacigalupi wrote 10,000 words today?

BLAKE: Holy Hell! For serious?

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: For serious. Diana Rowland wrote 4,000. How many did you write?

BLAKE: Well, I had these online interviews to do…

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Did you now?

BLAKE: They’re quite important interviews.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Oh.

BLAKE: I’m gonna write more tomorrow. Promise. If only…if only I could stop worrying about #Amazonfail.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Blake, It is your dharma not to be sold on Amazon.com so soon to publication.

BLAKE: Wait, don’t you mean, karma?

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Is that the one that happens to you, or the one you do?

BLAKE: I think they’re both, you know, deeper than that, man.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Anyway, the one that happens to you. That one. You did something wonky in a past life. It is your karma now to not be sold on Amazon.com.

BLAKE: Hold the phone. You’re supposed to be THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Well, I am.

BLAKE: But you’re expressing a disturbingly dodgy conception of the fundamental concepts behind Hinduism and Buddhism.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Yeah?

BLAKE: [sitting up] Yeah, kinda, man. You really should have the dharma vs. karma thing on lock down by now.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: [coughs, a sock falls off the pile] Well, theology was never my strong point.

BLAKE: But you _are_ theology. You are everything.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Absolutely everything?

BLAKE: Absolutely everything.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Do you know what N K Jemisin’s The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms Amazon.com sales rank in Books is?

BLAKE: Ummm…very good? Everyone says it’s an unbelievably amazing book.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: She’s doing so well “in Books” that we’ve also given her a rank “in Electronics” as well. Do you know what your rank is?

BLAKE: Something approximating Avogadro’s number?

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Yes! You see how your karma is manifest. Blake, now let’s talk about how much you’ve unpacked.

BLAKE: Don’t you even…

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: And let’s talk about that cactus you killed.

BLAKE: Homie, that was a succulent!

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Succulent?

BLAKE: They’re the larger group into which cacti belong. Most of them look like cacti without thorns.

THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Huh.

BLAKE: Dude, you _have_ to know this. You _are_ succulents!

PART OF THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: So…maybe I forgot to say all of my first name.

BLAKE: First name?

PART OF THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: I may have forgot to say “Part of.”

BLAKE: You’re only fucking PART OF THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY?

PART OF THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Yeah, kinda. But could you watch your language, please.

BLAKE: What part of the universe are you?

PART OF THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: All things that are both incompetent and exceedingly anxiety provoking.

BLAKE: Dear Sweet Lord! You are the fracken INCARNATION OF THE MACMILLAN/AMAZON.COM CONFLICT!

PART OF THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: …thank you for saying ‘fracken.”‘

BLAKE: You are Amazon vs. Macmillan, aren’t you?

PART OF THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Ummm.

BLAKE: Gaaaah. Look, can you get out of my laundry?

PART OF THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: [tearfully] But…but…where can I go?

BLAKE: Is it physically possible that you might cry, because I don’t have enough quarters to get all of you back into a spinning dryer.

PART OF THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: [sniffing] No, I can’t even cry. Nobody wants me.

BLAKE: Don’t…don’t be like that.

PART OF THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Boohoohoohoo.

BLAKE: Oh…hell. Okay, okay, stop that.

PART OF THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Boohoo. [Sniffs] Boohoohoooooo.

BLAKE: Stop that. Stop that…Okay, fine you can stay. Just stop crying.

PART OF THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: I can?

BLAKE: Yeah…just…how long do you need to stay?

PART OF THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Until Amazon.com starts selling Spellwright again?

BLAKE: God, now I’m going to cry.

PART OF THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: But I’ll be quiet, really quiet.

BLAKE: [rolls over] You’d better be. I’m going back to sleep.

PART OF THE UNIVERSE INCARNATED IN A PROTEAN PILE OF CLEANED BUT UNFOLDED LAUNDRY: Goodnight, Blake.

BLAKE: Goodnight…#Amazonfail.

[Blackout]

Comments

85 Responses to “What Happens to a Debut Author’s Brain on #Amazonfail”

  • LOL. I love that you wrote this when you should have been working on Spellbound.

  • Blake, you’re frackin’ hilarious. I’m in awe.

  • Can’t sleep, to busy lol’ing at yer post. SEND HALP.

    • oh noes! will send srsly unfunny material in the form of news reports on the prospects of the health care bill getting out of the senate, stat!

      • Moveon has been sending me those on a daily basis:( Obviously YOU GUYS ARE WORKING TOGETHER. Your evil plot is totes exposed.

        • *le sigh* well, one can only have a large bald shiny head and a white coat for so long before ppl realize one is an Evil Mastermind. i can’t haz world domination? mebe just a more equitable Americaz?

  • DanielChuter

    11:27 pm Feb-3-2010

    Reply

    Lol! Seriously man, if I were you I’d wouldn’t be able to sleep at night without atleast 3 rums.

  • Blake,

    Hilarious! That was a good way to start the morning.

    Tim

    P.S. preordered Spellwright from B&N!

  • Why a protean pile of clean but unfolded laundry? And what were you on, while writing this?

    Otherwise, frackin hilarious man.

  • I had pre-ordered SpellWright (and Desert Spear) through Amazon several weeks ago. However, on Saturdy I cancelled those orders (and my Amazon Prime membership) and instead ordered them through Powells.com. There are plenty of other places to order your book, but I know it’s still nerve-wracking that the largest retailer isn’t selling it.

    Good luck!

    • Splendid! Not that I wish Amazon ill *cough cough* in this whole conflict, but thank you so much for switching your account and orders! Someone (Scalzi maybe?) noted that the Internet works around areas of inefficiency. And comments like yours are really helping me to realize that is the case and reduce the stress about the whole debacle :)!

  • ::roflwaffle:: Found this because the namecheck summoned the daemons of Google. Thanks!

    Much empathy on the Amazon situation; there but for the grace of a coin-toss (because they could’ve picked any of the Big Six as their Example) go I, and it pisses me off to see a fellow soon-to-debut author going through this. If it helps you feel better at all, I’ve preordered your book at B&N (brick and mortar, since that’s actually easier to deal with than BN.com), because the same outfits that are saying good things about my book keep saying good things about yours too! So why don’t we agree to mutually angst over each others’ Bookscan numbers instead, since that at least means something concrete (unlike Amazon rank, when you get right down to it)? =)

    Though I’ve got no time to angst, since I’m feeling the sudden need to fold my own laundry before it starts talking. (You’re a big softie, man; if my laundry got chatty, I’d be at the thrift store the next day.)

    • thank you so very kindly for empathy! and i’m absolutely thrilled that a copy of Spellwright will end up in your hands. (otherwise i’d suggest an exchange of signed copies.) i’m very excited about The 10^5 Kingdoms! ordered my copy from a local indie. and though i’ll admit to be nervous about “all the fast kids outrunning me” when watching your sales rank, i’m also really excited for you! (along with all the reviewers)our mutual friend saladin ahmed has told me great things about the book and i judging by your sample chapters i think it’ll really enrich our tradition.

      and you’re right, no time for angst, i got stiffen the spine to get cracking on the laundry. great to (virtually) meet you!

  • Dude, I’m going to buy your book even if I have to break into Amazon’s warehouse and leave them payment in cash. At least I’d save on shipping. Sure, there are easier ways to get it, but it’s the principle of the matter.

    • eugene, you’re a prince! and i’ll totally be there to break you out of amazon.com jail and/or hire a group of underling super-villains to execute my diabolical escape plan as their evil mastermind. hey, i already have the large very shinny bald head and the white coat 😉

  • Here from Making Light.

    I am almost certainly going to buy your book new in hardcover, and while I can’t count the number of times I’ve done that on one hand, if I used all my fingers and toes it would come close – I can almost never afford new hardcovers.

    That’s going to make twice this month, because no way am I going to wait for Gawande’s Checklist Manifesto to make paperback.

    And actually that has less to do with this post and more to do with the fact that you love language and medicine. I’m a writer trying to walk a tightrope through pre-med studies at 25 and desperately need every positive example I can get of those who have entered this love triangle of words and science and are still surviving and thriving.

    Hail and well met, and thank you for existing: that’s just made my day.

    • Hail fellow and well met, indeed! Great to know there’s another out there stuck int the love triangle. i feel the need now (as perhaps you sometimes do) to trot out this Chekhov quotation:

      “Medicine is my lawful wife and literature my mistress; when I get tired of one, I spend the night with the other.”

      Of course, Old Anton forgot to mention that neither love ever really leaves you. it’s not like you can just put one aside for the night. but in the end (crosses all appendages and knocks on everything wooden) it feels like it’s all worth it.

      so thank you so very kindly for the pre-order and best of luck w/ the orgo, lab, and writing. do come back to give us reports of your progress 🙂

      • Thank you for your response!

        Yes, I tried to marry writing some time ago and came to the conclusion that monogamy, unsurprisingly, wasn’t really for us. Since then I’ve been hungrily seeking out the life narratives of doctors who write and writers who are doctors, and they (and you) give me faith in the potential existence of a future self for whom I often feel I have little more proof of than of the Tooth Fairy.

        Regarding orgo, I am leaving the ring (heh. insert ring structure pun here. heh.) bruised but standing, so far. Physics is treating me much more kindly, but then it runs in my family. (It occurs to me now, in a sheepish thought, that there is a non-remote chance you might have met my dad.)

        As I’m located in the fair cloudy city of Portland, I’ll naturally be picking your book up at Powell’s. And… *click* *tappity* *click* …now pre-ordered.

        • those of our ilk are indeed a rare species. made rarer by the fact that we’re hording any non-medical time. but should you be able to catch an honest-to-God practicing MD/novelist, they’re advice is worth their weight in gold. you’ll also be able to help them out because you, unlike 99.99% of folk in the hospital will be able to understand when they want to whine about medicine AND publishing 😉 i’m trying to think if i know any writer docs up your way and i don’t think i do…hrmm….well, and in any case, it’ll be more important to track someone down at your medschool.

          in other news: congrats on the orgo; who’s your dad?; and thank you so very kindly for the Powell’s order!

          • You’re welcome. And, as I keep telling people, “Don’t congratulate me yet!” It’s a long road from here, and I haven’t yet been able to make the volunteering commitments I’ll need to have under my belt. But then, my life is pretty full and I have a lot to care about in the interim, so if it takes me some time to get into med school, I’m pretty sanguine about that.

            Sorry about that: a bug-eyed monster must have eaten the link somewhere between my computer and your blog. My father works in radiation oncology at Stanford:

            http://med.stanford.edu/profiles/Gary_Luxton/

            …and I lived in that area for several years while I was still in my parents’ house, so reading your blog is giving me a surreal sense of reminiscence. My very first job when I was sixteen was at the bookstore which is now Books Inc in Mountain View, back when it was Printers Inc., and now it’s on your tour itinerary, and I’m getting vivid mental whiffs of the soup and garlic bread they used to serve in the cafe that no longer exists.

          • huh, we seemed to have maxed out the reply threads so i’ll reply here.

            haven’t bumped into your father but if do on rad onc, i’ll be sure to say high to him. rad onc is a…high power field (sorry, it’s late and the pun was just standing there)

            huh, i can’t remember if i mention it in my bio, but i did grow up around here too. i vividly remember Printers Inc. the one on California Ave has since only become a cafe, sadly.

          • Ba-dum-CHHH!

            I grew up largely in Long Beach, but we arrived in the Bay Area when I was 14 – well in time to acquire some formative memories. Heh. I think this deserves being taken to email, but as the guest in this space I’ll leave that to you.

            Now off to activate Write or Die and get tonight’s quota done before the sun comes up…

  • Elise Matthesen

    2:24 am Feb-5-2010

    Reply

    Dude, I am so buying Spellwright because of this.

  • Anna Feruglio Dal Dan

    3:23 am Feb-5-2010

    Reply

    Man, you are great. You made my day. I will totally buy your book.

  • […] What Happens to a Debut Author’s Brain on #Amazonfail — Some folks have called for support Amazon authors during the Amazon-Macmillan mess. Authors named have included me. I’m very grateful, but who we should really be supporting are debut authors, such as Blake Charlton, whose book is about to be released. Pre-order him at Powell’s, because you sure as hell can’t pre-order him at Amazon. For a debut author with modest numbers in his P&L, missing that first sales rush could literally be a career killer. […]

  • OK, add me to the people who are now going to buy your book. And order it at the library.

    • hi nina, splendid news! happy to add you to that list. and esp happy you’ll be pulling for me at a library. libraries (esp v old libraries*)are some of my favorite places in the world to be.

      *yes, i’m a westerner, so ‘old’ to me qualifies as anything >50yrs 😉

  • Hilary Hertzoff

    8:44 am Feb-5-2010

    Reply

    Here via Making Light. This post brightened my day so much that it has prompted me to do two things:

    Plan to pick up a copy of Spellwright for myself at Boskone next week. (Combination of waiting for a paycheck and wanting to support the dealers there.)

    Order a copy through BWI for the library where I work.

    Well done.

    • Hilary Hertzoff

      10:03 am Feb-5-2010

      Reply

      Except it isn’t availble until March. Lunacon, it is. 😉

      • eggselent! my evil plan is working. jealous that you’ll make it to Boskone & Lunacon. deadlines and lack of funds are keeping me mostly off the cons this year. good on you for supporting the dealers & thank you so kindly for going to bat for me with libraries, they are (as i just mentioned above) some of my favorite places in the world 🙂

  • […] Blake Charlton, whose book Spellwright is coming out from Macmillan this week, has a conversation with the universe about What Happens to a Debut Author’s Brain on #Amazonfail […]

  • Actually, this whole debacle brought you to my attention, so I preordered at a local indie just this morning, hope you don’t mind. Also, I think my brother will end up buying it too, because we live in different states now, and if I like it, he’ll buy it. We’re cool like that.

    Just to give you reassurances so you can go back to writing and not hallucinating about your laundry nagging you to write.

    /me nods. But John Scalzi mentioned you, so you may be getting more publicity outta this than you’d thought, right?

    • “Silver Lining meet Cloud. Cloud, Silver Lining.” Thanks so much for introducing the two for me, Lit McLite. And yes, I was just trying to be snarky on the post, and the out pouring of support and solidarity has warmed my heart and shut my laundry up ;_

      And thank you also for supporting your local indie. i was really proud of my community here when we all banded together to save a beloved local indie called Kepler’s Books; it played an important role in sixties counterculture, which is pretty flashy. i wish all indies had such to help them out.

      somehow, i lost capitalization in this reply. *shurgs* who needs it anyway?

      and, hold the phone, i can haz scalzi? no way. to my knowledge the only time i made it into Whatever was when he, Ian McDonald, Paolo Bacagalupi and (God alone knows how i got into this group) me tried to sell Lou Anders a lurid anthology whilst at the bar *cough cough* at WorldCon in Denver: http://whatever.scalzi.com/2008/08/11/denvention-3-a-oh-probably-not-brief-recap/

      • It could very likely have been a comment to a post– and I’m sorry if I mislead you… I just know it was the tab right after a Scalzi blog post, and the way I have my tabs set up, I pretty much had to have clicked the link from the post to get here. (Or not clicked any links at all within the post, but… ever since tabbed browsing, who does that?)

        Unfortunately, I’ve closed the window, and really feel absolutely no desire to revisit this whole fail thing to figure out where it was exactly. Like I said, I’m sorry if I was wrong.

        But hey, you got at least me?

        • oh, yeah, totally not complaining at all. very happy to have you from any link. &, if we’re honest, really my comment was all just an excuse to remember those…shall we we say yeasty?…days in denver.

          fine scottish surname you got there. perhaps with 50% less calories than a non-lite scotsman?

          • Lit McLite

            12:17 am Feb-7-2010

            The Denvention /was/ fun, even if I was so jetlagged it’s not even funny, and may have yelled inappropriate things in panels. I don’t blame the reminiscence one whit.

            And not a Scotch name, a net-name. I’m theLiterator many other places. So I’m in fact, half a Literatrix. Or something. 50% Literati?

          • is it, like metaphysically, possible to ask inappropriate things at a Con panel? i’m pretty sure the universe has allowed them to exist so that any question might be asked 🙂

            great that you also a Con-goer, next time were at the same one *eyes thin wallet balefully* lets look eachother up!

  • David Ratnasabapathy

    11:16 am Feb-5-2010

    Reply

    Hilarious! Could you make your book available in ebook form please? It saves on the overseas shipping costs.

    Preferably through Baen Webscriptions? I buy every other month from them.

    • David!

      A of all) I love your last name, and am dying to know it’s etymology. Alas, the Powers that Google are failing me. I’d guess something Sanskrit-derived or perhaps Dravidian; however, i wouldn’t be surprised if both of those #linguisticsfail on my part.

      B of all) I no longer control the ebook rights for my books. When I sold the rights to publish the physical book to Tor (& ergo Macmillian) I was also _obligated_ to sell them the ebook rights. They wouldn’t have done business with me otherwise. My understanding is that they want to make the ebooks as widely available as possible (though perhaps not with the competing house of Bean). I know that it was going to be on Kindle *cough cough* now i’m not so sure : / however, i can promise you I will always push to put my work into as many different media (ebooks, audiobooks) a possible.

  • Blake

    Came here via Whatever

    Read the article

    Pre-ordered Spellwright (B&N)

    I’m pretty sure I’ll like it

    • pedro! thanks so much for the pre-order. i’m pretty sure you’ll like it too..but then again, i’m biased 🙂 and from Scalzi’s whatever, you say? i didn’t know he mentioned me. it’s humbling!

  • On the strength of this post (mentioned on Making Light) I’ve preordered Spellwright from Powell’s.

    • splendid news! glad you enjoyed the post, thank you kindly for the pre-order, and i hope Spellwright makes the words come alive on the page for you 😉

  • Brilliant. Now looking up your work…

    • Hi Susan. The Button Returneth! wonderful news. thanks for sharing. i go now to fold shirts and breath easier. also, do please call me Blake 🙂

  • Came from Making Light, loved the post, ordered your book from BN.com.

  • David Ratnasabapathy

    10:25 pm Feb-5-2010

    Reply

    Ah cheers Blake.

    A) My last name is indeed Dravidian!
    B) Oh well. Did you sell your US and worldwide rights separately? I ask because there are “geographical restrictions” on the ebooks I’m allowed to buy.

    Worst case I’ll buy paper. Any word on when the paperback comes out? Hardcovers eat up too much shelf space!

    • A) sweet!
      B) yep, we’re selling rights country by country. US/Canadian went to Tor, UK & commonwealth to Voyager, Holland to…Luitingh (spelling? who knows) Germany to Klett. Russia to AST. there are a few things cooking apparently. the author’s the last to know. donno if that helps.

      i believe the paperback scheduling is dependent on hardback performance–the better I do, sadly for you, the longer you’ll have to wait. i think it’s between 7 and 12 months. but I sympathize about the shelfspace! myself, i’m an audiobook guy, & though they take a bit more hard drive space than an ebook 😉

  • I also came here via Making Light which I was perusing as a way of procrastinating. You see, I had just returned from the laundry and had a large pile of clean (but not folded) clothes squatting in the middle of my bed and I lacked the will to deal with them.

    My keyboard is not full of beverage, nor is my monitor spattered with any drink sprayed through my nose, but that is only because I had not yet taken a sip. I did learn something about the hardness of my floor (it is quite hard).

    I also will be buying your book

    • hi paul! so glad i didn’t perciptate precipitate keyboard/water sprinkling; they tend not to grow as fast as succulents 😉 thank you kindly for sharing that I almost did though. it’s making me laugh as i read your comment. hope your laundry put up less of a fight than mine did.

  • I just found you because Charlie stross wrote about you and his article had just been slashdotted
    and now I planning to buy your book on the basis of the previous text and I don’t buy books that often
    #amazonfail might turn out to have been a help than a hindrance

    • hi kate! yeah, i saw all the links coming in from charlie’s site. followed it back and noticed he didn’t quite get the details of my situation correct (book comes out March 2nd, not during #Amazonfail); however, it wasn’t relevant to his argument, as there were folks to pubbed during the event. and furthermore i was happy to have the traffic.

      and yes your right! when life gives you lemons, make #amazonfail…or something like that 😉

  • Blake,

    The Books are back up on Amazon! Huzzah! Pre-orders have been saved and dont have to be redone. My order, as well as others, are all safe. Now you don’t have to stress out and can get back to writing. # Amazonfail is over.

    • hi kenny! thanks so much for the cheer. raising my glass to the omnipresent direction representing the internet from whence you came. answering that question (will they still honor my pre-order) was one of the most stressful, mostly because nobody–not my friends, my agent, my editor, my girl friends cat–knew anything about if they would or not. so i am indeed breathing easier and writing up a storm.

  • my peoples-who-are-ordering-Spellwright-on-the-strength-of-this-post (not that i think you’ll all come back and look at this comment way down at the list, but if perchance you have):

    first off) i love you.

    second off) you all know that Spellwright is *not* a one man, one act play featuring a snarky metaphysical household objects, right? it’s a epic fantasy with adventure, magic, wit, intrigue and all that. just want to make sure, so you all don’t start sending me piles of cleaned but unfolded laundry as a form of highly original and potentially Downy fresh hatemail. cool?

    • No, its even better then that. Its an epic fantasy that has one of the best thought out magic systems that I have ever come across. And I havent even mentioned the oodles (thats a large number) of positive reviews that I have read on various blogs stating how great the book is.

      You had me at words, sentences, and grammar are magic.

      • *pheww* you take a load off of my mind. it’s very good to know that ppl are checking out the sample chapters. and the oodles help one stop worrying about the amazon sales rank…forever? if so i feel like we’ve done important work for future generations of authors. 😉

        and thanks so much for the kind words. hope the words come alive for you!

    • Yeah, I read the excerpt first. Then I posted a link to Facebook. Then I woke up my roommate and made HER read the excerpt. Then I preordered.

      It was thought through, I promise. I think that you win on first sentence merit alone. (Thought Stephen King’s “The man in black fled across the desert; the gunslinger followed.” is still more exciting, you did make my top ten forever.)

      • 🙂 to even be mentioned in the same paragraph as Yon-Powers-that-King is good enough by me.

        best first line I ever read was in the “The Intuitionist” by colson whitehead:

        “It’s a new elevator, freshly pressed to the rails, and it’s not built to fall this fast.”

        *yowza*

        • I was inordinately amused by this comment when I read it, and now it seems even funnier.

          I read it as “YAY! STEPHEN KING! But, yanno, you’re WRONG!”

          I know it wasn’t intended that way (unless it was, but please don’t cure my of my delusion.) but it just seems funny to me.

          And that is one heck of an opening sentence there. Since my reading material is 90% Harlequin category romance, I have nothing to up the ante with. Sorry.

  • I found this through a post by Charles Stross, and now I’m very disappointed to learn that you won’t be out in the UK until July. Give your publishers a poke for being so tardy. Or better still, send them some of that talkative underwear.

    • hola ros! glad to have you over from charlie’s. given that i’m getting a dribble of his traffic; his number of hits must be astronomical. i will indeed send some clean but unfolded laundry to voyager.

  • here via Making Light as well (although i could well have been lead here via Scalzi, too…?)

    i don’t know. anyway, i am here. i have one more blog bookmarked, and you have one more book buyer. sound fair?

    you made me laugh. and that is ALways a win.

    and i recommend books to other people, too. 🙂

    best,
    ashley

    • hi ashley! sounds more than fair to me if your making recommendations. i trust a friend’s opinion on a book infinitely more than any published review…well, most of my friends at least 🙂

  • awesome. here via Making Light and you are now bookmarked, and I will buy your book, because I giggled, and those are rare these days.

    also.

    • Hola Terrintokyo! i must say i love you’re name. and i’m assuming your visiting all the way from Tokyo?

      hope the words in Spellwright come alive for you! meantime, giggle away! i’m doing my best to write more 😉

  • The Masked Ferret

    6:14 am Feb-8-2010

    Reply

    Well, Blake, the premise to your book sounds interesting, and I just pre-ordered it. From Amazon, of course, just to make things perfect for you. The odd thing is I never would have heard about your book if not for the #AmazonFail. You didn’t write for Baen, so at best I would have run into your book on the mass market aisle at Wal-Mart, except for your excellent post above, which I found via Slashdot and a Charlie Stoss blog post. So, it is possible that there may have been some side benefit to this whole cluster [insert your favorite pejorative here].

    • Hola Masked Ferret! wonderful news. breaking into Wal-Mart or Bean (if you’re published by another house) is pretty tricky, so i’m glad i caught your attention here.

      favorite pejorative? (i think i know where you’re going) but do i have to pick just one for as a favorite? but there are so many wonderful pejoratives, and they all sound so much more…earnest…when strung together 😉

  • HI – I felt the need to introduce myself. I’m an SF fan and a family practice physician, and it is just so cool to find other people who bridge those two worlds. I am also a big fan of Abraham Verghese, though I have not yet read his recent novel.

    I’ve been aware of Spellwright for a while and had already been planning on getting it before the whole Amazon kerfluffle broke out. I look forward to reading it. Here’s to hopefully gaining readers from the publicity rather then losing them from a temporary inability to order from Amazon.

    Good luck with the rest of med school. Do you know what you want to specialize in?

    • hi Stephanie! wonderful to (virtually)meet you and to discover you’re also of the MD/SFF persuasion. and, actually, given that the best SFF examines the intersection of science and humanism, i’m constantly that all physicians aren’t avid SFF plans.

      so glad to hear you’re looking into Spellwright. hope the words come alive for you 🙂

      as for specialty, it’s awfully hard to know from this vantage point (post USMLE step 1 but pre clerkship year). i feel like i’ve seen all the previews, but none of the movies. however, given that i’m trucking w/ dr. verghese so often i’m most strongly leaning toward internal medicine and pediatrics. we’ll see how that holds up when I’m a clerk…

  • My copy from http://www.bookdepository.com/book/9780765317278/Spellwright just arrived. Free shipping!

    • wonderful! I’ve not encountered Book Depository, but if shipping free…well, actually, i really don’t need much of a reason to abandon Amazon now do I 🙂

  • You expressed that superbly!

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