Tim Pratt
SF and Fantasy Writer

Archive for March, 2013

Officeboy Dialogue: Smallest Room in the House Edition

Wednesday, March 20th, 2013

Let me give some background: Our house has one (1) bathroom. Our son has an uncanny ability to decide he needs to use the bathroom exactly when one of his parents is already in there, and often hovers outside the door making loud demands while the room is occupied.

Officeboy, in tones of wonder: What if we had THREE bathrooms?

Me: One bathroom each! That would be pretty great.

Officeboy, warming to the subject: What if our living room was a bathroom? And the room where you wait to go to the bathroom was a bathroom? And also the BATHROOM was a bathroom?

(I love that he refers to that space as “the room where you wait to go to the bathroom,” which for him is its chief function, I suppose.)

On another occasion:

Officeboy: We need more bathrooms.

Me: It would be nice. But it could be worse. When I was a kid, we had five people in the family, and we only had one bathroom.

Officeboy (Demands a full accounting of who those other four people are, where they live now, why he doesn’t visit them more often, if they’re all still alive, etc. Then says): What if you all had to go to the bathroom at once?

Me: Well, we lived out in the country, so the boys could just go out in the back yard and pee.

Officeboy (Thinks deeply): Can I pee in OUR yard?

Me: I don’t think your mother would like that. Or the neighbors.

Kickstarter Wrap-Up and FreemadeSF

Monday, March 11th, 2013

Well. That Kickstarter I did went pretty okay, didn’t it?

Back in the day, Random House paid me $20K for each of the first four Marla Mason books. So… getting pretty close to that here. (Though not as close as it looks, once I deduct my costs for commissioning cover art and illustrations, shipping books to people, etc.) Plus, my single biggest backer (with a pledge that amounted to about 10% of my total) didn’t actually fulfill their pledge, unfortunately, so my actual total is only a bit over $16,000 — which doesn’t change much, really. It just means I’ll have a couple fewer interior illustrations than I’d expected. (The backer is apologetic and says they may be able to pay as promised in the near future; if that happens I’ll add back the illos, but it’s uncertain.) Still, though — I’ve only sold one novel in the past few years that paid me more than this. It is a strange new world and I am living right in the middle of it.

The writing of the book is going well, too, and that’s the best part of this, for me — getting to continue developing this world and these characters at length, in a way that would have been impossible for financial reasons under other circumstances.

My hybrid approach to the business of writing — small presses, big presses, weird passion projects, practical commercial projects, anthologies, short stories, crowdfunding, whatever else seems feasible and fun — is working out. It keeps me busy, and I am seldom bored.

And if you want to stave off your own boredom: I’ll be reading at the FreemadeSF Launch Party tonight in San Francisco, along with Nick Mamatas and Mark Pantoja and Cliff Winnig. There will be music and other delights as well. Should be fun. Come on out.

Take It As Read

Tuesday, March 5th, 2013

We’re deep into the last day of my Kickstarter for Bride of Death, so if you were thinking of becoming a backer, now is the time. Every time I look at the Kickstarter page I am filled with joy and delight at the generosity of my readers — and the power of crowdfunding to make art compatible with financial necessities. What I’m trying to say is, thank you, and hurray.

The new issue of Apex Magazine is out today, with my looong story “The Fairy Library” free to read, and an interview with me (mostly about my new collection), and also many good things by people who are not me, like the awesome Rachel Swirsky and the equally but differently awesome Will Alexander.

I am doing another Ask Me Anything at Reddit Fantasy this Thursday, with Richard Lee Byers — we both write Pathfinder Tales fantasy novels, so I imagine there’ll be a lot of questions and answers about those, but as the name implies, we can be Asked Anything. Do drop by. Speaking of Pathfinder Tales, here’s a sample chapter for my new novel Liar’s Blade, with a fantastic illustration of one of my favorite characters from the book.

Life is very very busy, with readings to do and stories to write (with deadlines that are nearly upon me) and Life Stuff and a very full calendar… but it’s good. I am happy and productive.