Browsing Tag



This year’s Norwescon!

I’ve had more fun at Norwescon in recent years, in no small part because it’s actually pretty cool to be Dara’s water fairy–i.e., the person who runs water to the musicians she’s bringing in for the concert tracks. It means I get to hang out listening to all the music, and every so often, somebody’ll play something really awesome.

For example, this is the year I discovered Molly Lewis and Hello, the Future!, both of whom involve awesome geek girl singing. And ukeleles. I’m totally now hearing the Doctor in my head saying “I play a ukelele now. Ukeleles are COOL.” And while nerdcore remains not really my Thing, I did nonetheless quite enjoy what I saw of Klopfenpop and Death*Star, in Dara’s MONSTARRS OF NERDCORE concert.

But I also had quite a bit of fun attending three excellent panels. One was a complete geek-out about the movie edition of The Hobbit, in which I amused the panelists by announcing I was reading the book as we speak, in two different languages (and I was told that why yes, that IS extremely geeky). I was particularly pleased that one of the panelists was a young woman who’d just taken a semester on Tolkien at the U-dub, in fact–and that the two men on the panel cheerfully deferred to her as their expert, since her knowledge of the canon was significantly more current.

It will probably surprise none of you that the entire room was pretty much in agreement that 1) yes, we all liked the movie, 2) yes, we all had issues with the movie, and 3) yes, we’re all going to go see The Desolation of Smaug, probably two or three times. I was also quite, QUITE amused at one dude talking about how they prettied up Thorin, Kili, and Fili to get them to appeal to the “tweens and twenty-somethings”, at which point I and the fifty-something woman behind me were all “whaddya mean, twenty-somethings?” Because yeah, we were on board with the Unexpected Hotness of Dwarves.

Another panel was excellently moderated by Diana Pharaoh Francis, and was about Rogues and Anti-Heroes in Fantasy and why we love them and such. We had a delightful discussion about the differences between those character archetypes, and moreover, I was quite charmed by Diana’s purple hair. And Browncoat lanyard. You can’t go wrong with a Browncoat lanyard.

The third panel I quite enjoyed was one on Big Publishing Vs. Small Publishing Vs. Self-Publishing, which, for reasons that should be obvious, is Highly Relevant to My Interests. I wasn’t terribly surprised to see the guys who run small presses of COURSE being all “but of course you should send your stuff to big presses and if not then the small presses”… and this was where I started diverging in opinion from them, because I’ve come to believe that whether or not you submit to a big NY press should in fact depend on what your goals are and how much patience you have. Meanwhile, though, the two women who had more experience with self-pub had stern opinions about whether or not big publishing had worked for them (spoiler alert: it hadn’t, not really).

And in particular, I was pleased to note that Karen Kincy, an author whose book Other had been recommended to me, was on this panel. She spoke quite passionately about her experiences and why she chose to run a Kickstarter for the fourth novel in her series. As a Kickstarter author myself, that was pretty much the most interesting part of the panel for me.

Meanwhile, I had the pleasure of meeting a couple of local authors I’d seen at a previous Norwescon–Tiger Gray and Vivien Weaver, who have a couple of books in a shared universe that are published under the moniker of Hard Limits Press. When they found out I was an author as well we had quite the delightful chat about each other’s covers–and when I told them I had a book coming out from Carina, they were all “ooh, Deb Nemeth” and I said quite happily that she’s my editor. I quickly bought both of their books in trade, and then came home and bought them again in digital form just so I’d have them easily at hand for my commutes.

And. AND! I sold five print copies of Faerie Blood, three of which were with the help of the lovely people of Book Universe. I sold them on consignment so I didn’t get as much money for them, but hey, they were sold, and I was quite happy to give them a cut for doing the work of selling the copies for me!

Music-wise, I had huge fun at the Find Your Instrument panel, in which I totally bugged userinfosolcita to show me her violin. Because RESEARCH. Also because AWESOME. I finally got it explained to me exactly how a violin does in fact physically differ from a fiddle, and even managed to get a few coherent notes off of Sunnie’s instrument. WOW, holding that thing felt weird to flute-player me, since it was at a completely different angle. And playing it felt even weirder, since I had to try to figure out how to angle the bow to get it to make proper noises against the strings.

I did learn two things that may eventually become useful when writing Kendis, though. And those are: 1) there’s not really any such thing as a chord on the violin, but you can sometimes play two strings at once and that seems to be about as close as you get; 2) if you want to do quick staccato notes, you will want to bow down rather than up, since you get more force that way. (Since one of the questions I asked Sunnie was how to know which direction to bow when.)

Cascadia’s Got Talent was fun again this year, even if it was short, and was sadly lacking in a gong. But that was okay, since nobody was really bad enough to deserve being gonged, and a couple of people were actually actively funny and sang well. And I did love Dara’s schtick about the grand prize of Metro bus passes to Kenmore (“Kenmore! It’s on the way to Bothell! Kenmore! We used to be interesting, thank God THAT’S over! Kenmore! Where the appliances go to die!”).

Dara and I closed out the con with what’s becoming a tradition–the Intro to Irish Session panel, which is small but fun and eventually I’ll have enough damn tunes to actually carry a fair share of one of these. But in the meantime, this time, I heavily geeked out about podorythmie and Quebec music as opposed to Irish music, and had the delight of a lady in the audience name-checking Le Vent du Nord. “YES!” I proclaimed happily, as the aforementioned userinfosolcita beside me gestured in my direction in a “why yes she IS a raving fangirl” sort of way, “I love them!”

And I got told by Alexander James Adams that my singing was good on the GBS fanvid that Dara and I showed off to him. Which was awesome. <3

Faerie Blood


So! Here I am on my first night of Norwescon, and all, repeat, all of my remaining postcards and posters for Kiri Moth’s awesome Faerie Blood cover art have vanished off the freebie tables where I left ’em. And at least one person appears to have bought Faerie Blood on Amazon today, and I have picked up a couple new followers on Twitter as well.

If you’re coming by because you found those posters and postcards, and you see this before the end of the convention: special offer! Come find me and I’ll sign that postcard or poster for you, and also give you $1 off either the print edition of Faerie Blood OR the CDs of the ebook that I have with me! Blonde chick. Brown hat. Great Big Sea hoodie. Can’t miss me!

Asking $15 for the print editions, and $5 for the ebook CDs–which contain not only the EPUB, PDF, and MOBI formats of the current edition of the book, but ALSO the EPUB and PDF of the original Drollerie Press edition. And I’ve thrown in the EPUB, PDF, and MOBI editions of the Warder universe short story “The Blood of the Land” as well. I have 17 copies of these discs, and they’re a Norwescon exclusive. Get ’em from me while supplies last!

ALSO: I have arranged with the nice lady who runs the Book Universe table to have four copies of the print edition on consignment for the con! If you can’t find me and you want a copy of the book, look in the dealers’ room for the Book Universe table! I buy books from them every year just because they’re awesome.

ALSO #2: Special shoutout to Tiger Gray and Vivien Weaver at the Hard Limits Press table in the dealers’ room, who turn out to know my most EXCELLENT editor at Carina, Deb Nemeth! I bought the two books they were selling on the grounds of that, and we had an awesome conversation about each other’s book covers, and publishing under pen names. Note also: Hard Limits Press is taking submissions. Fellow writers, go look ’em up.

About Me, Music

Imminent Anna sightings!

For Seattle-area locals, hey, I’m going to be at Norwescon! Not in a professional writer-type capacity, but I WILL be there, and I’ll be easily found providing assistance to Dara during the music concerts! And just in case anybody wants one, I will also be bringing my few remaining print copies of Faerie Blood. And I’ll have some special CDs as well with ebook copies on ’em, offered at a special price for con attendees! Look for me if you want either of these things, or both!

And NEXT week, of course, I will be happily boinging up to Vancouver to see Le Vent du Nord perform with the Vancouver Metropolitan Orchestra! This time, I am taking the TRAIN. Because I am NOT trusting our car to be driven any farther than the distance necessary to get to and from work. And if the train should encounter any difficulties, you may rest assured that I am FULLY PREPARED to fight my way through any zombie apocalypses that may overwhelm the tracks. Because nothing, I repeat, NOTHING is going to stand between me and seeing a show which is going to look and sound a LOT like this:

You may also rest assured, O Internets, that I am sternly reminding myself that no, it is NOT socially acceptable for me to shove the VMO’s piccolo player into a closet so I can steal their seat. No matter HOW much I want to see whatever sheet music they’ll be using for the evening! Likewise I will be sternly reminding myself that as this is a symphony venue, it will NOT be really acceptable to jump out of my seat and start dancing or singing the response lines at the top of my lungs, no matter HOW great the urge.

(Though I’m tellin’ ya, Internets, with inspiration like this, this is going to be a hard, hard test of my fangirly willpower!)

And at this show I’ll be seeing Susan, who, as I have expressed on previous posts, IS made entirely of awesomeness. And I’ll be staying with Geri, who is ALSO made of awesomeness. And I’ll be seeing fellow GBS fangirls Kate and Angela, with whom I have every hope of carrying out shenanigans the day after the show. Possibly also hijinx, and maybe even mischief!

Any of the rest of you who are also in Vancouver, if you want to meet up, let me know! I’ll be in Vancouver from the afternoon of April 4th through the evening of the 6th. I still have time free on Saturday for possible brunch or lunch!

About Me

Norwescon 34: Made of epic and awesome

So here’s a super-quick summary of the various awesome things about Norwescon 34, this past weekend:

  • At least a couple people seem to have taken my Faerie Blood cards off the freebie rack, because two more people have added me on Goodreads. Thank you, Goodreads adders!
  • I did actually sell one of my Faerie Blood CDs, on Sunday afternoon while I was waiting for userinfosolarbird! Thank you, nice lady in fairy dress who stopped to talk to me in the lobby, and I hope you enjoy the book.
  • Dara got props from the Seattle Geekly podcast for the awesomeness of her music programming!
  • I discovered that nerdcore is, in fact, pretty cool.
  • My and Dara’s friend userinfotereshkova2001 took Best in Show for her Na’vi costume at the Masquerade! Go Torrey!
  • userinfoseanan_mcguire (Mira Grant) up for Best Novel Hugo for Feed! BOOYA!
  • I volunteered officially for the first time ever. I got over 15 hours helping Dara by running water to various performers, and by helping man the merch table as well! This netted me several free books and a shirt. Go me!
  • Stood in line for nearly two hours to get books signed by userinfojimbutcher and his wife Shannon. Worth EVERY MINUTE. Also got to get a book signed by the awesome userinfokatatomic, and said hello to Mary Robinette Kowal as well. Told her I very much looked forward to reading my copy of her book.
  • Bought several awesome shirts, including one of Jayne’s shirts from Serenity and a new Matt Smith Doctor Who shirt!
  • Got a mass market copy of userinfojpsorrow‘s (Benjamin Tate’s) Well of Sorrows, bought directly from him after a great panel on ebooks. He very kindly signed it for me right then, too! Thanks, Joshua!
  • Had the pleasure of meeting Heather Dale and her husband Ben, and watching them do a joint double set with userinfovixyish and userinfotfabris and userinfosolcita and userinfostealthcello. Bought a couple more of Heather’s CDs and a shirt, and she very kindly signed a CD for me as well. Her song about Sedna, the Inuit goddess of the sea, was GREAT. She is now clearly part of the ongoing conspiracy to make all my favorite music Canadian. 😀
  • My and Dara’s favorite Barcon quote: VODKA OF THE RIGHTEOUS! APPLE TINIS OF THE JUST!

All in all this was a very, very enjoyable convention and I look forward to doing more Actual Volunteering next year! And maybe doing some actual readings or something. ‘Cause, like, I have a book and stuff.

About Me, Faerie Blood

Hello Norwescon!

Taking a moment to put up a post before having dinner, just to say that I’ve left assorted business cards on the freebie table and the flyer rack here at Norwescon. If anybody happens to pick one up and comes by this site to visit, hello and welcome, and I hope your convention is being awesome so far!

If you HAVE come by because of Norwescon and you’re interested in buying my book, arrange to find me before EOD on Sunday and I’ll sell you one of my small number of Faerie Blood CDs. That will get you an ePub AND a PDF of the book, both DRM-free, along with a free short story, “The Disenchanting of Princess Cerridwen”. I’m offering Norwescon attendees a special price of $5 per disk!

So say hi if you are at the con and you see this, and tell me how your con is going! Better yet, find me and do it in person. 🙂

About Me

Off to Norwescon this evening, find me there

Not doing anything in any sort of official “writer” capacity–but I’ll be showing up at various panels out of basic interest, and hope to see any of y’all who might be reading this there. 🙂 Look for me in particular at any panels where the redoubtable userinfokatatomic and userinfojimbutcher are involved!

I’ll also have the last six Faerie Blood CDs with me, so if anybody who’ll be at the con wants one, bug me about that! And I’ll leave a lot of my business cards on the freebie table as well.

Please also do bug me if you want to meet up for a meal or a snack or something. Those of you who I know locally anyway probably already have my cell number for texting purposes. But if you don’t and you want it, shoot me an email with how I can reach you, and we’ll meet up! (Gmail is my preferred email address, annathepiper as always.) I’m busy early Thursday evening, when I’ll be having dinner with userinfokarenjunker. Then I’ll be playing backup guitar for my beloved userinfosolarbird later that same evening! But other than that my options are fairly open.

See you all there, I hope!


Who’s going to Norwescon?

I am now cleared for time off to attend Norwescon! And I’m taking the Thursday AND Friday, so I’ll be there for the entire convention! Aside from playing backup guitar for userinfosolarbird, my plans are relaxed and groovy. Being as I am an urban fantasy author and all, I’ll likely be findable attending various urban-fantasy-themed panels. Since I’m bringing the General, I’ll also try to attend at least SOME filk.

I’ll be bringing a handful of my Faerie Blood business cards to leave on the freebie rack, and in case anybody actually wants to buy one, I’ll have my small set of Faerie Blood CDs as well.

So if you’re going to be there and you’re interested in meeting up for a meal of some sort or joint attendance of panels or something, let me know!