Good News!

Oct. 19th, 2016 10:48 pm
rj_anderson: (Nomad - Ivy)
First, thanks to all who weighed in on my earlier post about my cat possibly having arthritis. I did call the vet to make an appointment, but the receptionist recommended that I buy a package of TheraBites (a once-a-day cat treat which contains supplements for hips and joints) and try her out on those for a while to see if there was any improvement.

Well. Not only does Snickers LOVE the treats (so no need to trick or force her into eating them), we're not even halfway through the bag and she's already moving much more comfortably. In fact, the other day she was up on the bed chasing her tail, which I hadn't seen her do since she was a kitten. Phew! Problem solved... at least, as long as I keep giving her a treat every morning for the rest of her life. Which is doable. So I am much relieved.

Second, I was surprised and delighted to discover that A Pocket Full of Murder is one of the ten Canadian middle-grade novels nominated for the Silver Birch Award this year. That means a whole bunch of 9-12 year olds will be reading my book this winter, along with at least four more other nominated titles, so they can vote for their favorite in the spring. I've always longed to be nominated for this award, and it's a big boost for the book generally, so I'm very thankful.

I'll be reading from Pocket and talking a little about the sequel this weekend, at the Local Authors reading portion of the Stratford Writers' Festival. All the other events are ticketed and this one is free, but it's also up against the #CanLitPit session where aspiring writers get to pitch directly to editors, so I'm not holding my breath too much for a big audience... still, it was nice to be asked and I hope the Festival does well.

* * *

And thirdly, speaking of Stratford and festivals, I had the pleasure of attending a matinee performance of The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe at the Avon Theatre with my youngest son's school group today. I'd really been hoping to see the play, especially after my fellow Narnia purist [personal profile] grav_ity  gave it her enthusiastic thumbs-up, but didn't think that I'd ever get the chance... except it turned out a few of the kids in P's class weren't able to attend, so the teacher entered all the interested parents in a draw for the remaining tickets and I was one of the winners. Which is a minor miracle, because I never win anything.

Anyway, I ended up sitting beside P and one of his friends, and we had excellent seats -- about five rows from the stage, bang in the centre. Where I proceeded to tear up halfway through Mr. Beaver's speech about Aslan in Act One and spent most of Act Two desperately wishing I'd brought tissues, because the production was fantastic. I'm so glad they stuck close to the original story, including a lot of the dialogue, instead of introducing a lot of flotsam for the sake of novelty or a false notion of drama (*side-eyes the movies of Prince Caspian and Voyage of the Dawn Treader*).

I'd read an early review that complained about the songs being intrusive, but I didn't find them overly long or distracting at all, and the one about coming to Aslan's table pretty much killed me (as I said on Twitter, "I was not prepared for the communion metaphors").

And tomorrow Adrienne Kress is coming for our annual tea-and-catch-up, which is always a treat, and will be an especially happy occasion this time with her new MG adventure novel The Explorers coming out in 2017. I really enjoy Adrienne's narrative voice and my boys are big fans of her writing as well, so we're looking forward to this one.
 Two lovely surprises in as many days!

First, a friend on Facebook pointed me to a recent article at Tor.com featuring Quicksilver as one of Five Books With Asexual Protagonists (and furthermore declaring my post about writing Tori's character to be "excellent", which was a nice bonus).

Then today I got a package in the mail containing two US hardcover copies of A Pocket Full of Murder which, at first glance, seemed no different from the author copies I already had. I was mystified at first, but then I spotted the note tucked inside:

Congratulations!

Your book has reprinted! Please find a sample copy enclosed.

Best wishes,

Atheneum

And sure enough, when I checked the title page it turned out to be the SECOND edition. Whoop!

I am so, so, happy and relieved to know that the book is doing well enough to exceed my publisher's expectations -- and I suspect making this year's CLA Top Ten Best Books for Children shortlist probably had a good deal to do with the bump in sales, so I am grateful for that all over again.
Considering that I started my first blog in 2002 you would think I would be a little more assiduous about maintaining it, but frankly these days I haven't the energy for much beyond Twitter. Plus, I have been so busy beating my head against the first draft of Quicksilver and all the associated research (which will NEVER END, I swear) that I have neglected even to report on my weekend at the Nebulas. But really, does anyone care about all that? Except for possibly wanting to hear how I (along with four other authors) ended up serenading Neil Gaiman in an elevator?

(Before we got on the elevator, however, I should mention that he also serenaded us with a rendition of Derek & Clive's "Jump", which is pretty much the sort of song one would expect Neil Gaiman to perform on short notice. He has quite a nice singing voice and can even keep a tune unaccompanied; clearly his wife has trained him well.)

(And before that he told us a few bits of trivia about his Bradbury-nominated [and later winning] script for "The Doctor's Wife", such as that it was called "Bigger On The Inside" until practically the last moment, and then Steven Moffat decided to change the title on the grounds that it was too spoilery. To which Neil objected, saying that he could think of any number of other story ideas that could be called "The Doctor's Wife", but Moffat said patiently, "Yes, but in the case of your story it's actually true.")

(All this happened late on the Saturday afternoon before the Nebula banquet, because Ellen Kushner, Diana Peterfreund, Franny Billingsley and E. Lily Yu had decided to sing folk ballads in an out-of-the-way corner, and invited me to come and sing along. Neil came looking for Ellen because she's an old friend, and the best bit was sitting across from Diana and Lily when they realized what was going on and watching their jaws simultaneously drop.)

(And that's about the whole story I think, except that the song we sang to Neil in the elevator was "Greensleeves", in four-part harmony, which dwindled to three-part and two-part harmony as we got off at the various floors, and Neil later described it as the best lift ride he'd ever had, which I have to agree with because it was tremendous fun and would have been even without him, but it's always nicest to have an audience.)

(Also, you should read E. Lily Yu's Nebula-nominated short story "The Cartographer Wasps and the Anarchist Bees" because it is really clever and she is a lovely person, whom I hope I shall meet again some day. Ditto on Ellen, Diana, and Franny, of course, and also on Delia Sherman, whose Freedom Maze is utterly wonderful and thoroughly deserved to win the Norton, so I am thrilled for her and not even sorry I didn't win.)

(And I also met Genevieve Valentine who is delightful, and then I bought her Nebula-nominated novel Mechanique to read on the plane ride home, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.)

ANYWAY, after that truly epic series of parentheses, the actual point of this post was to mention to any of my readers in the Toronto region that I will be signing the Canadian paperback release of Arrow this Saturday at Chapters Brampton along with Megan Crewe (The Way We Fall) and Leah Bobet (Above), and we will even get to speak and answer questions for a few minutes first, which makes it more of a Proper Event than any bookstore event I've done yet. So I am quite excited about that, and if you should happen to be in the Brampton area around 2 p.m., please stop in and say hello!

(And now I must go and put dinner in the oven, and then I shall collapse.)
There has been a lot of bad news in my life lately (not for me personally, but for people I love and am close to -- serious health problems, impending operations, the sudden death of my uncle), so it was lovely to open my e-mail the other day and find out some really fantastic news for a change:

Ultraviolet has been nominated for the 2012 Andre Norton Award!

This is the YA division of the Nebula Awards, which are legendary in the SF&F genre, so even being considered for the award is a pretty big deal, let alone actually making the shortlist. I am thrilled and honoured.

Here's the full list of nominees as posted on the official SFWA site:
I have actually not yet read any of these, but I've heard amazing things about all of them. I think I'm going to make it my business to read all the other nominated titles before the awards ceremony.

***

For my fellow writers in the quasi-local area, I have more good news -- I'm going to be presenting a workshop on revision in Waterloo, ON at the end of March:

Poster with details under cut... )

So if you need a pep talk before launching into your own revisions or would appreciate some general tips on how to go about it, this may be the seminar for you! Or just come and say hi and hang out with me and some other writers. Whatever. :)

***

And finally, a vid that has nothing to do with writing but I've been posting it everywhere since I discovered it last night, just because it is so INCREDIBLY CLEVER. And also broke my heart a little.

From the author's introduction at her journal:

In the beginning, there was Sherlock Holmes. And Holmes brought forth the brilliant doctor House, embodied by the lovely Hugh Laurie. Who prior to that in Fortysomething played a slightly less brilliant doctor, Paul Slippery, who begat three sons, the eldest of whom was played by the equally-lovely-if-somewhat-peculiarly-named Benedict Cumberbatch. Who of course grew up to play Sherlock. ... And then my head exploded.

All I can say is, watch. Enjoy. Marvel at the parallels. Surely some of them had to be intentional?!

There has been a lot of bad news in my life lately (not for me personally, but for people I love and am close to -- serious health problems, impending operations, the sudden death of my uncle), so it was lovely to open my e-mail the other day and find out some really fantastic news for a change:

Ultraviolet has been nominated for the 2012 Andre Norton Award!

This is the YA division of the Nebula Awards, which are legendary in the SF&F genre, so even being considered for the award is a pretty big deal, let alone actually making the shortlist. I am thrilled and honoured.

Here's the full list of nominees as posted on the official SFWA site:
I have actually not yet read any of the other books on the list, but I've heard amazing things about all of them. I think I'm going to make it my business to read all the other nominated titles before the awards ceremony.

***

For my fellow writers in the quasi-local area, I have more good news -- I'm going to be presenting a workshop on revision in Waterloo, ON at the end of March: 

Poster with details under cut... )

So if you need a pep talk before launching into your own revisions or would appreciate some general tips on how to go about it, this may be the seminar for you! Or just come and say hi and hang out with me and some other writers. Whatever. :)

***

And finally, a vid that has nothing to do with writing but I've been posting it everywhere since I discovered it last night, just because it is so INCREDIBLY CLEVER. And also broke my heart a little.

From the author's introduction at her journal: 

In the beginning, there was Sherlock Holmes. And Holmes brought forth the brilliant doctor House, embodied by the lovely Hugh Laurie. Who prior to that in Fortysomething played a slightly less brilliant doctor, Paul Slippery, who begat three sons, the eldest of whom was played by the equally-lovely-if-somewhat-peculiarly-named Benedict Cumberbatch. Who of course grew up to play Sherlock. ... And then my head exploded.

All I can say is, watch. Enjoy. Marvel at the parallels. Surely some of them had to be intentional?!

I am delighted to announce that my UK publisher, Orchard Books, has just signed me up for another two-book deal!

So that means that after Swift comes out in early 2012, readers in the UK and Ireland can look forward to a sequel to that book (tentatively entitled Nomad), and also a companion novel to my YA paranormal thriller Ultraviolet (tentatively entitled Quicksilver), in 2013/14.

***

Also in the good news department: just this very day, Knife was announced as the winning title for this year's Concorde Book Award!

I would love to have attended the ceremony at Downend School in South Gloucestershire, but had to be content with sending a video acceptance speech instead (isn't technology grand?).

***

And now I am off to celebrate with cookies!
Here I am resurfacing from the wilds of nowhere (where I have been reading a great many books, and getting housework done, and other mundane but necessary things -- not that reading books is mundane, because it is actually quite awesome; but chores and such, definitely) to share with you an assortment of Things Relevant To Your (or possibly just My) Interests.

***

First, I think it is very important that you all learn the correct way to peel a banana.

Helpful video under the cut )

Seriously, I had NO IDEA. Why did no one tell me about this?! It's brilliant! I want to open bananas all day long now, and I don't even like them that much!

***

Second, the hardcover of Faery Rebels: Spell Hunter may be listed as a bargain book on Amazon ($6.80, people! Buy one for Aunt Bessie while you can!), but it is doing rather nicely in other respects -- including being nominated for the Clive Staples Award. Right now the coordinator of the awards, Rebecca LuElla Miller, is doing an in-depth survey of all the titles with links to excerpts, reviews and so on, and I have to say I've got some pretty stiff competition here!

To vote, you have to have read at least two of the nominated titles, so this isn't just a popularity contest to see who has the biggest fanbase -- it's meant to encourage the reading and writing of speculative fiction by Christian authors. And I am totally behind that, so I plan to check out one or two of the other nominated titles myself! Voting begins in August.

***

Third, I am gearing up for this weekend when I appear on the panel "FTW = Fandom Trained Writers" along with Naomi Novik, Sarah Rees Brennan, Karen Healey, Ali Wilgus and Peg Kerr at Infinitus 2010 in Orlando. I am ridiculously excited about this and looking forward to creating large amounts of havoc with Sarah and Karen, which you can count on Sarah to sum up in hilarious fashion on her LJ when we get back. (Or else I will be very boring and she will just have to make up a pack of outrageous lies, but she is good at that too!)

***

Fourth, I went to see Crowded House in Toronto last night with two of my three older brothers. This was a landmark occasion, not only because Pete and Mark are fab people, but because the last time I attended a Crowded House concert was on my 16th birthday and I will always remember that as the best concert I've ever been to in my entire life. So I knew that even though the band has aged considerably since then (and so have I), I would not be disappointed.

And oh my, I was not. It was a wonderful show indeed. AND THEN THEY PLAYED THIS SONG, which made me insanely happy:

Video from the concert )

"Fingers of Love" (link is to album version) is on the Touching Indigo soundtrack, and rightly so. The way the music crashes in on "Colour is its own reward" alone makes me see stars, and I'm not even a synaesthete. Sigh.

***

And I think that is all for now!

Some Knife-related news and other lovely things that have cropped up in the past few weeks:

First, the end of February brought me a new LJ friend, who drew this lovely piece of fan art and captured the Knife in my head so perfectly that when I first saw it I cried with happiness. It also came with a beautiful review of the book -- thank you, [livejournal.com profile] cirtholien!

***

Early in March I learned that Faery Rebels: Spell Hunter has been shortlisted for the Canadian Library Association’s Children’s Book of the Year award. It also made the Ontario Library Association’s Best Bets For Children, which is a list of ten books selected on the basis of their literary/artistic merit, as well as their appeal for children. I'm thrilled and honoured to be on both these lists!

***

Then, from March 23-25, Spell Hunter was the first-ever mass market title to be featured on the Christian Science Fiction and Fantasy Blog Tour. When I signed up for the tour I wasn't sure how well Knife's story would be received or how many would be interested even in reading it -- but I have to say I was blown away by the number and quality of the reviews and the depth and insight that many of the reviewers brought to the book. Even though a couple of participants had misgivings about the content or felt the story was less meaningful than they'd hoped, they always expressed themselves graciously and there were some terrific discussions in comments. Here are some highlights:

Rebecca LuElla Miller's opening post on why books like Spell Hunter are worthwhile and also her excellent review;

My fellow Blue Boarder Sally Apokedak talking about Weaving in Worldview and how to handle spiritual truth without preaching;

Fred Warren's shrewd, humorous series of posts.

Thanks to all the CSFF bloggers who read Spell Hunter and took the time to post about it!

***

And lastly, look at what showed up in my mailbox today! It's the complete and unabridged audio book version of Knife, as read by Emma Parish, from Oakhill Audio in the UK! I can't wait to sit down and give it a proper listen...

***

And tomorrow, I look forward to telling you all how much I adored and enjoyed "The Eleventh Hour", also known as the first episode of the new season of Doctor Who. Though I suppose I've just told you what I thought of it already... but rest assured, I have much more rabbiting on to do about the new Doctor, the new companion, and the story than that!
Nearly all my good news these days seems to be coming from the other side of the pond -- which is not a bad thing by any means! But in any case, I found out this week courtesy of some schoolchildren who e-mailed me from the UK that Knife has been nominated for the Hillingdon Secondary School Book of the Year for 2010. The nominees are selected by a team of librarians, copies of the nominated books are read by students at all participating schools and then the final award winner is voted on by the students themselves, so I'm really delighted to be part of this!

And also related to the UK editions of my books, I just completed a short "Meet the Author" video where I talk about the inspirations behind Knife and Rebel, for Orchard Books to use on their website:



I have already been mocked* for the Scarf That Ate Rebecca's Head, so you can hold off on that one. :) Next time I shall know better.

--
* Not by my publisher, I hasten to add. And it was all in good fun anyway.
This past Thursday I flew down to the AASL (American Association of School Librarians) conference in Charlotte, NC to meet some fellow [livejournal.com profile] debut2009 authors, hang out with my agent, drive up to visit [livejournal.com profile] cesario, and maybe, if all went well, get to sign a few of my books at the AASL PitStop. Those were my expectations, and they were modest and practical ones, and I had no idea that there was even the possibility of anything more. Especially since I'd left my laptop at home, my Canadian cell phone doesn't work in the US, and I wouldn't have access to e-mail or Internet until I got back Sunday night.

So I was wholly unprepared, when I met the Debs for breakfast on Friday morning, to find out from [livejournal.com profile] carrie_ryan that Knife has been nominated for one of the most prestigious children's book awards in the English-speaking world. The Carnegie Medal. We are talking the British equivalent of the Newbery or the National Book Award, people. C.S. Lewis won it for The Last Battle. So did Richard Adams for Watership Down.

I may have stared blankly at Carrie for about thirty seconds before I started flailing. And then I spent the whole weekend in a happy daze and I haven't come down since.

Congratulations to my fellow nominees [livejournal.com profile] sarahtales (The Demon's Lexicon) and [livejournal.com profile] halseanderson (Chains)!
Tags:

Ham and Wry*

Oct. 4th, 2006 07:39 pm
rj_anderson: (House - House/Cameron - Galatea II)
Well, this was a nice surprise:

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

I didn't even realize [livejournal.com profile] hc_fanficawards existed until just now, but I'm very pleased and grateful to [livejournal.com profile] chmaresh for nominating Galatea in the "Long" category.

[livejournal.com profile] cesario, you've been nommed as well, in case you didn't know.

And the rest of you (or at least, those who don't run screaming in horror at the thought of House/Cameron in any form) can see the list of nominees and cast your ballot here if you're so inclined.

--
* Not to be confused with the inevitable episode of House where Hugh Laurie's old friend Stephen puts in a guest appearance, which would be Ham and Fry, or the little Welsh town with all the bookshops, which is Hay-on-Wye.
I just got an e-mail from Laurie R. King telling me she's paid the entire registration fee for me to go to Bouchercon 2004 in October. She said it was a thank-you gift for running RUSS-L all these years.

*takes deep breath*

EEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Oh why oh why oh why do I not have Case of the Winning Woman finished? Or my modern mystery novel? There will be agents and editors there and aaarrrrrrrrrrrrrrggggggggh.

Except that aside from Laurie, there is not a single author on the (very long) list of attending mystery authors whose books I have actually read. I've heard of Val McDermid, Sara Paretsky, Ian Rankin and Peter Robinson, but haven't actually read any of their stuff. I think my brother might be a Rankin reader though, come to think of it...

*clicks randomly around Bouchercon site, in a state of dizzy excitement*

Woo! JKR is up for "Best Young Adult Mystery" in the Anthony Awards, for OotP! (Er... how weird is that, really?)

Oh, man, I cannot believe this. I'm already thinking -- I could stay with my brother, who has an apartment in downtown Toronto, and I could take the subway (I love the subway), and if I sign up in time I could go to the Sisters in Crime high tea and...

Did I say EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!! yet?

And now I feel extra guilty that I have done such a crap job of updating The Beekeeper's Holmes Page and associated documents over the past couple of years.

Laurie OWNS.

ETA: The guilt is assuaged -- I have updated the web page, the FAQ and the group's list of acronyms. Phew. *feels better*
The 2004 Alias Festival of Fic results are in, and wow! I'm astonished and thrilled. What You Never Knew You Wanted won awards for Outstanding Weiss Characterization (1st Place), Outstanding Syd/Weiss Romance (also 1st), and Outstanding Long Story (3rd)! I really did not expect this at all! Thanks so much to everyone who voted for me. And congratulations to all the other winners!

As for last weekend's trip to Convention Alley, I will soon have more -- lots more -- to report. Stay tuned to learn about the Worst Traffic Jam Ever, hear some shiny new HP theories and find out how my Snape presentation went. Also, find out why the new hot LJ interest is stalking* Steve Vander Ark (though if you were at CA, you'll know the answer to that already).
--
* By which I mean "stalking" in the nicest, purely virtual (and most legal) kind of way. Naturally. And I haven't actually got around to doing any of it yet. So it's more a sort of vague, theoretical stalking. But you get the idea.

Wowzers!

Jun. 7th, 2004 12:09 am
rj_anderson: (Weiss Man)
I just went and had a peek at the Nominations for this year's Alias Festival of Fic, and I'm in there all over the place! Thanks to all the lovely, lovely folks who took the time and care to nominate "Consolation Prize" and "What You Never Knew You Wanted" for various honors. Your support is really heartwarming.

And now I really, really need to go to bed...
Wow! Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] corngirl_jo, without whom I would never have known that my story "Sfumato" won two awards in the 2003 Alias Festival of Fic:

  • Third Place - Outstanding Irina Characterization
  • Third Place - Outstanding Jack/Irina Romance

    So very cool! I must finish my HP/Alias fic in time for next year's contest. They don't have a Crossover category, but I might be able to get "Outstanding Mission" if I make it exciting enough *g*.
  • I won! I won!

    Dec. 15th, 2002 07:26 am
    rj_anderson: (Default)
    Whee! My little mid-ep vignette about two secondary characters in ALIAS took 3rd place in the November Challlenge at Cover Me!


    3rd : Sfumato by R.J. Anderson

    "Sfumato" offers us insight to a timeless scene. It investigates layer upon layer of tension, of history that permeates the conversation, but the tip of the iceberg. It plunges us headfirst into the unknown, into Laura Bristow, Irina Derevko, the spy, the mother, the girl that Jack fell in love with. All of these twisted into one unwavering voice.


    Well, that's a cool way to start the morning. Especially since I knew the other two entries would win...!

    Profile

    rj_anderson: (Default)
    rj_anderson

    January 2017

    S M T W T F S
    1234567
    8 9101112 1314
    15161718 192021
    22232425262728
    293031    

    Syndicate

    RSS Atom

    Most Popular Tags

    Style Credit

    Expand Cut Tags

    No cut tags
    Page generated Mar. 29th, 2017 11:12 am
    Powered by Dreamwidth Studios