Monthly Archive for November, 2013

doctor who: the untold story

20131123_083127Actually, I have told this story, but I haven’t blogged about it before, so that hardly counts, does it?

The last time I wore the T-shirt in this photo (given to me by my friend Dan, who I have to thank for introducing me to Doctor Who back before most people in the U.S. had even heard of it!) I stopped in at a Dunkin’ Donuts in Harlem. I ordered a couple of donuts and a bottle of Vanilla Coke, my poison of choice at the time, and had this exchange with the clerk, a Desi man, as he rang up my purchase.

Clerk: You should know better than that.
Me: Huh?
Clerk: Eating this. It isn’t good for you.
Me: Okay… Why do you think I should know better?
Clerk: Aren’t you a doctor?
Me: No. I was going to be. Do I look like a doctor?
Clerk: I thought you were with the World Health Organization.
Me: …
(I suddenly remember the shirt I’m wearing and consider trying to explain it.)
Me: It’s just a shirt!

And that’s why this T-shirt went into a drawer and I haven’t worn it until now. Today, many more people know Doctor Who, even if they don’t recognize the Tom Baker-era logo. Or Tom Baker, for that matter.

Happy anniversary, Doctor Who! To celebrate, I’m disappearing into my writing TARDIS to get some work done and avoid spoilers this afternoon. Thanks to Fandango, I have to wait for the special to drop on iTunes, and I’m planning to watch it tomorrow with friends and family.

vworp… vworp… vworp…

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write what you don’t know

doctor-whoOne of the most common pieces of writing advice we often hear as beginners is “Write what you know.” But what does that even mean? And is it actually good advice?

If I had taken that suggestion literally, my first novel would have been about a man in his late twenties with a day job as a media coordinator at Lifetime Television who was writing a novel about the action-packed world of file transfers, video conversions, and women’s programming. Riveting. Perhaps readers would have been drawn in by the rich cast of characters based on my wacky co-workers, friends, and family–who I’m sure would have been flattered to be included. You see the problem. Worse still, my second novel would have been exactly the same, and my third…

I read fiction for experiences completely different from my own, to see with other people’s eyes, so why should writing fiction be any different? I love science fiction and fantasy because in the right hands, an author can make the impossible seem real.

[Read the rest of this post at The League of Extraordinary Writers]

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buying books is great, but so are free books

allfourstars_finalOver at EMU’s Debuts, my friend Tara Dairman, author of All Four Stars (Coming out July 10, 2014! Pre-order now!) is discussing how being a debut author turned her into a book buyer — and since I and my own first novel figure into this story, Tara is generously giving away a free copy of Fair Coin in any format. Even the new audiobook! All you have to do is leave a comment on her blog post to be entered for a chance to win.

Book-buying is definitely a “problem” I have too. I always bought a lot of books, and I also got a lot for free when I lived in NYC. But I’m excited when I see books written and/or edited by my friends on bookstore shelves, so I always try to buy them when I can, especially in the week they’re released and especially at signings and readings at bookstores. I now know a lot of authors so this gets expensive, and I’m behind on reading many of them, but it’s the thought and sales that count, right?

I have not yet pre-ordered Tara’s book, All Four Stars, but only because I want to walk into a store on July 10, find it on a shelf, and buy it in person — yes, even paying the full retail price! Then I’ll post a picture of me with the book, so look for that.

In the meantime, drop a comment here and get my debut book for free! :)

 

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hear coin

AudiblePerhaps it’s unsurprising that audiobooks take much less time to produce than print books, but still… Less than two months from signing the contract, you can now purchase and download my first YA novel, Fair Coin, in audiobook form in the U.S. and in the U.K. I expect it won’t take long for Quantum Coin to follow.

I’m so excited to have the book out in a different format, with other people adapting the text for a different audience. I’ve only heard the sample of the opening pages so far, but narrator MacLeod Andrews is amazing and his performance is absolutely perfect. It’s both odd and thrilling to hear someone else speaking words that have largely existed only in my head and my voice for so long, and it’s great to hear what MacLeod has done with the book.

To celebrate unlocking the audiobook achievement, here’s some related trivia:

  • Audible_FCThe U.K. audiobook is the first official release of Fair Coin in any foreign market!
  • MacLeod Andrews also provided the voice of one of the Will Graysons in the audiobook of a favorite YA book of mine, Will Grayson, Will Grayson by David Levithan and John Green.
  • One of MacLeod’s recent YA audiobook releases was the excellent Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson, who I share an agent with. Some of MacLeod’s other notable (to me) projects for Brilliance Audio and Audible include Jumper by Steven Gould, Monsters of Men by Patrick Ness, and Lies Beneath by Anne Greenwood Brown (one of my fellow Apocalypsies).
  • My mom never read to me when I was a kid (don’t feel too sorry for me, I had a pretty good handle on it on my own), but I really enjoy hearing someone tell me a story. I think it reminds me of the first grade and Reading Rainbow. So maybe that’s why I like going to readings and listening to audiobooks and podcasts!
  • Now when someone asks me how long Fair Coin is, I can tell them it’s about 9 hours and 40 minutes. The unabridged audiobook is roughly as long as the Lord of the Rings film trilogy!

So if you’ve been waiting for the audiobook, wait no longer! I hope lots of people who haven’t yet read Fair Coin give it a try.

Get FAIR COIN at Audible.com (United States) — FREE with 30-day free trial membership
Get FAIR COIN at Audible.co.uk (United Kingdom)

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see me at philcon!

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I look like this.

Despite having lived in Philadelphia for nearly three years, next week I will be attending my first Philcon — the first and longest running SFF convention in the world — at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Cherry Hill, N.J., Friday, Nov. 8 – Sunday, Nov. 10. Their full schedule is here, but you can find me at the panels listed below, and I hope you’ll come and say hi. This is likely to be my last local event until at least next year.

Before I share my schedule: I want everyone to enjoy the convention without detracting from anyone else’s fun and comfort, so please read Philcon’s Harassment Policy, such as it is.

Friday, Nov. 8

7:00 PM in Plaza II (Two) (1 hour)
DYSTOPIA IN YOUNG ADULT FICTION
[Panelists: Rebecca Robare (mod), Gil Cnaan, E.C. Myers, Christine Norris, Aurora Celeste]

Saturday, Nov. 9

3:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Three (1 hour)
IS STAR TREK BOLDLY GOING WHERE WE WANT IT TO?
[Panelists: Keith R.A. DeCandido (mod), Jay Smith, Theodore Krulik, E.C. Myers, Christopher Stout]

4:00 PM in Executive Suite 623 (1 hour)
READING: E.C. MYERS
I may read my new short story, “Kiss and Kiss and Kiss and Tell”, which I finished writing on Friday. So if you show up, you’ll be the first people anywhere to hear it! It hasn’t been published yet, and it has the standard author disclaimer that it still may be a little rough :)

5:00 PM in Plaza III (Three) (1 hour)
WRITING SCIENCE FICTION FOR YOUNG ADULTS
[Panelists: Ty Drago (mod), Michael J. Friedman, Bill Spangler, E.C. Myers, Thomas Willeford]

Sunday, Nov. 10

2:00 PM in Autograph Table (1 hour)
AUTOGRAPH: ANNA KASHINA, E.C.MYERS
[Panelists: Anna Kashina (mod), E.C. Myers]

The rest of the time I may be hanging out in the bar, or writing on my netbook in a corner somewhere. Deadlines wait for no con.

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