Of course in truth that isn’t why I write fantasy, but it is a pleasant and unexpected side effect! Only 4 days to go now before my first visit to a Comic Con, and my first participation in a Con! How weirdly awesome is that? I’m going to geek out and take my ancient paperback of The Sword of Shannara and hope I can run into Terry Brooks and get him to sign it, and tell him the story of how a famous Scottish writer gave me a copy of his book in response to being shown my first fantasy novel that I’d written at 14. I still remember looking at it (the shiny new copy I had been given), frowning, and wondering what the hell a book I had already read was supposed to tell me, apart from the fact that it was a Del Rey version, which was kind of exotic, but I preferred the one I had, which is now so old it smells of mildew or magic, depending on your viewpoint. And the brothers Hildebrant cover is just tops. (Now let’s just let the whole SoS = LOTR thing go – I recognized that when I first read SoS when I was 10, and loved the fact that I got to experience that kind of adventure all over again! Now, maybe I’d want more, and hey, that’s part of what I’ll be talking about on Friday…!)
Anyway, I’m really looking forward to the panel, and meeting some great new people, and getting to listen to some interesting takes on a subject dear to my heart, plus fielding questions from the floor! With me on this all too brief adventure will be, in alphabetical order: Cheryl Carpinello, a writer of middle grade and YA fiction who has used her love of ancient and medieval history to craft Tales and Legends for Reluctant Readers. From King Tut to Camelot, she has it covered! (And has my great admiration for working so hard to bring books to audiences that might otherwise shy away from the written word. Writers need readers, and Cheryl is helping to make more readers!) My friend Steven Craig, who knows what he wants to write and how to execute it, and whose debut novel, Waiting For Today is a modern day reworking of the trials of Job, and which would have qualified as a fantasy novel in the era (was it really 2004??) before the Red Sox won the World Series – but now we have to accept that even the Chicago Cubs can win the big one! Strange days!
I’m abusing exclamation marks. I apologise. Maybe I’m a trace excited. And not using them to indicate the imperative at all. Hey ho.
Next up is Todd Fahnestock, a writer of classic fantasy with multiple twists for all ages: I am currently enjoying his Fairmist opus, and he is launching his Threadweavers trilogy in its entirety this year, (Tip of the hat to you, sir!) with the final installment, Threads of Amarion, due out on July 17th – so you have enough time to read the first two and be ready for it!
Finally I will be joined by Aaron Spriggs, a touring musician (that’s rock star, by the way), poet, scientist and burning man whose published short stories and poetry will soon be joined by a Steampunk novel he has co-written with Brian Kaufman. Is he a drummer? I think he looks like a drummer. Or maybe just a bit like my brother, who happens to be a drummer. Oh, and big metal objects seem to be a theme too.
So here are the folk who will be sharing the stage come Friday at midday, room 404 in the Colorado Convention Center at Denver Comic Con! Don’t be shy – we’re in the program now, so come on down and join in the chat!
(That last exclamation mark was in the imperative, I am forced to admit.)