Hey folks, if you're in the northern climes like we are here in Ottawa, your trees are mostly bare, Thanksgiving's
come and gone, and the carved pumpkins are getting a little past your prime, though in some cases, the decay makes
them more visually interesting in a Halloweenish way. We've also had our first serious snowstorm, but happily,
the results didn't stick around.
For most of you, though, Thanksgiving is right around the corner. MaryAnn and I wish you a happy celebration
with family and friends.
I got to meet a few of you recently in Seattle, where I taught another workshop at Hugo House, did a solo
concert and reading, and visited a Montessori school. I always enjoy meeting my readers and this time they
included some great budding writers, adorable children at the school, and a fun night of music and story, where
many attendees are beginning to be familiar faces. It makes the book signing line take a little longer as we
chat to catch up, but nobody really seemed to be in a hurry.
Sadly, MaryAnn wasn't able to join me this time, but since Seattle has almost become an annual sojourn for us,
she'll simply have to come next time.
The main reason for this newsletter is that I finally have some actual news. I mentioned in the last one that
there were some book deals pending, and now that I've signed contracts I can tell you what a few of them are.
First up, Medicine Road, complete with Mr. Vess's wonderful illustrations, is finally going to
be available in a trade paperback edition that won't kill your pocketbook. This will be coming out from the
good folks at Tachyon Publications, probably sometime in 2009. Here's a link to their site:
Longer down the road, I'll have another YA novel published by Firebird/Viking. I've been working on it
throughout this past year, so hopefully it won't be too long before it's available. I haven't yet settled on a title.
Lastly, Tor has bought a fifth Newford collection called Muse & Reverie, which will probably be
available in late 2009 or earlier in the following year. However, I do have a new novel coming out from Tor
before that. The Mystery of Grace, will be published in March 2009. It's not a Newford novel. Never
say never, but I don't expect to be visiting friends in Newford in the foreseeable future. I think MaryAnn's
got an advance reading copy up at the moment with the various things she sells on eBay. You can have a look
here and read the back cover flap to get a sense of the story:
If you're a fan of either Patricia Briggs or Holly Black (I certainly love 'em both), they're both stretching their
wings into the comic book field. Holly's got a hardcover graphic novel called The Good Neighbors (Graphix),
which is the first in a series and it's got all the good things you'd expect from anything she writes. Patricia
is writing Mercy Thompson: Homecoming, an ongoing series from Dabel Brothers Publishing that goes back to
the early life of the title character so it certainly has me intrigued.
And yes, I still read prose. A recent favourite is Raven by Allison Van Diepen (Simon Pulse), a
wonderful take on the whole idea of immortals that doesn't go anywhere you'd expect it to. It'll be out
in January so preorder a copy now. The other book that I just loved is an older title from way back
in 2003: Matt Ruff's Set This House in Order, which explores the complexities and problems of living
with multiple personalities and had me hooked from page one.
There's always so much great music floating around. Too much to even begin to list it all. So just let me say
that guitar wizards Rodrigo y Gabriela have a CD/DVD combo just out called Live in Japan that you really
shouldn't miss, and if you remember how much of a Dylan fan I am, you'll know I'm in heaven with the recent
release of The Bootleg Series Vol. 8: Tell Tale Signs. It never ceases to amaze me that these are the songs
that got left off the albums.
As for our own music, MaryAnn and I now play at Patty's Pub only on the first Thursday of every month, so if
you're heading this way, we hope you'll be able to time it right for a visit at the pub.
I'll keep this short because I hope to write again before the year ends with some more news that I have to
keep under my hat until the contracts are signed.
To our American friends, we're delighted with your choice of Obama for president. He's got his work cut
out for him, but at least he provides that important spirit lifter: Hope. "Yes, we can!"
Until again, take care of each other.