It occurs to me that, this being April Fool’s day, when I talk about taking a yeti on my trip, people will think that I’m making a joke. And I am, but not the kind you think.
As you know, I have sort of astonishingly weird travel karma. At one point, after a flight was delayed because an airline stewardess got “severely shocked” by the warming tray in first class, I tweeted “Also, I think this answers the question of whether having Rob with me makes travel go more smoothly.”
Scalzi replied, “Well, if Rob wasn’t with you, all the passengers would have been consumed by Yeti.”
This led to Howard Tayler and Dan Wells presenting me with a stuffed Yeti at the Superstars Writing Workshop. He’s Bumble the Abominable Snowman from Rudolph and adorable. I’ve taken to tossing him in my bag when I travel figuring that if it weren’t for the Yeti things would be much, much worse.
Anyway, all of that is to say that we’re playing a game of #marygoround on Twitter today because I’m on my way up to Seattle to visit Cherie Priest. I’ll be talking about the yeti, and it’s no joke.
While I was in Utah I joined Dan Wells and Howard Tayler, of Writing Excuses, for a conversation with Dave Wolverton about movie considerations and formulas. Dave explained the three-act structure to us, and we talked about how this applies for transitioning stories to the screen.
While I was in Utah, I had occasion to visit the home of the Tayler’s. Knowing that they have four children, I brought along The Broken Bridge, my tiny little puppet show. Sandra has written a charming account of the afternoon spent playing with her children. With pictures!
“Tra la la!” said Mary as she made the little shadow puppet move behind the back lit screen. In front of the screen my four kids sat spell bound, watching the surprisingly life-like motions of the little shadow man. A second player entered the stage and Mary gave this character a distinctly different voice. “Is this the road to London?”
I spent the day hanging out with Howard and Sandra Tayler, which was a great deal of fun. Knowing they had kids, I tossed the Broken Bridge into my bag and took it to their house. Not only did I perform the show, two of their children got excited and started doing their own performances on the screen. I loved it. Super-nice kids. Plus I got a giant collection of Schlock (eligible for Hugo) Mercenary while there.
Afterwards, Howard and I went to the booksigning, picking up Dan Wells (::cough:: Campbell eligible ::cough::), author of I Am Not A Serial Killer, on the way. Dan had an ARC of his latest book, I Don’t Want to Kill Youfor me. Not that I’ve been anxious or awaiting this or anything, but I did sort of snatch the copy out of his hands. Squeeing fangirl, that I am.
The signing was fun. Oddly, it was nice that I had the puppet show along because there were a couple of small children there with their parents and I wound up doing the show two or three times. It’s very, very short, but it did get kind of silly. The staff at Sam Weller’s Bookstore, by the way, are really, really lovely people.
Then a group of us went out for dinner afterwards, which was fun. It’s so nice to be able to shoot the breeze with other writers. Such fun.
The lovely men at Writing Excuses invited me to stick around and record another episode with them at World Con. They’ve just posted it the Writing Process Q & A. Brandon, Dan and Howard answer a wide range of questions and I tag along for the ride.
While I was at WorldCon, Howard Tayler asked me to swing by and participate in the Writing Excuses podcast panel. He described it as a bunch of fifteen minute podcasts in front of a live audience, which, I must say, was great fun.
Brandon Sanderson, Howard Tayler and Dan Wells are very engaging hosts and made me feel quite welcome. For the first episode, Brandon asked me if there was anything I particularly wanted to talk about. I said that lately I’ve been talking about how puppetry intersects with my fiction. So we spent fifteen minutes talking about the four principles of puppetry.
(Tor Books — August 21, 2018) Continuing the grand sweep of alternate history laid out in The Calculating Stars, The Fated Sky looks forward to 1961, when mankind is well-established on the moon and looking forward to its next step: journeying to, and eventually colonizing, Mars. Of course, the noted Lady Astronaut Elma York would like to go, […]