On September 1, I was Helen-in-Black (plus 1 shirt in electric blue!) at Worldcon—and thank you all for posting with your support for the all-black wardrobe choice. You gave me confidence as I sallied forth amongst the litterati-glitterati of the F-SF (Fantasy-Scifi) world. And some extra confidence was needed because I had just read Gail Carriger’s admonition not to “be a slob” and been overcome by WAS: Wardrobe Anxiety Syndrome. I got through it though, with your awesome Supe support: and here’s a snap of me doing my “in-black” thing—with Thornspell at my Worldcon reading.
Speaking of awesome Supes—and they are!—I also met up with fellow Supernatural Underground authors Tracey O’Hara, Nicole Murphy and Carrie Vaughn during Worldcon. It was just fantastic to meet in person at last, when interaction had all been email and internet up until then. I’m all for internet and email, they’re a marvelous way of bridging the world, but there is nothing quite like sitting down with a friend and having a cup of coffee (or something stronger: ok, we’ve been rumbled!) in realtime space.
Then it was back home to Christchurch New Zealand to the aftermath of the 7.1 earthquake that shook the city at 4.35 a.m. in the early morning of September 4. Firstly, I should say right up front that no one died; no one was even seriously injured, so a great deal to be thankful for, most particularly having earthquake building codes and applying ’em. But still, a crazy three weeks with over 1275 recorded afterquakes since the original—and in answer to the question: “did the earth move for you, baby?”, I can honestly put my hand on my heart and say, “14 times yesterday!” And averaging around 12-14 still, every day: Wild!
The Race to Publication
The earth may shake, but the race to publication day for The Heir of Night in the USA and Canada has been wilder still. So much has been happening: blog interviews, and guest blog posts, and those nail-chewin’ moments when you know the first reviews are in but you haven’t read them yet—a bit like getting exam results: you know the vital answer’s “there”, but can’t quite open the envelope! Well the envelope’s been opened now and—again with the Woot!--the result looks good! Library Journal has even been kind enough to say that The Heir of Night: “… reinvigorates the epic fantasy with appealing characters and a richly detailed world." (Thank you, Library Journal!)
One of the very best moments, though, was when I received my first author copies of Heir—and not only held it in my hands, but could really see how wonderful the blue Greg Bridges cover looks up close, smell the new paper scent of the pages, and run a fingertip over the beautifully embossed text of my title: The Heir of Night …
And Party Like There’s No Tomorrow—
… And then I had the best blog party ever to celebrate the book actually being On Sale on 9/28, with official Publication Day TODAY! Over 440 people came—I know some of you did, too and it was awesome to see you there! You can still check out the party here and read my summary of some of the comments guests left here.
With Giveaways: Ta da-dum!
To keep The Heir of Night party spirit going, my editor, the mighty Kate Nintzel of Eos, has 3 sets of giveaway books for you: 1 x The Heir of Night (of course!) plus 1 each of Robin Hobb’s dragon duology: Dragon Keeper and Dragon Haven (because Robin did such a wonderful cover quote for Heir!):
"A richly told tale of strange magic, dark treachery, and conflicting loyalties, set in a well-realized world"— Robin Hobb
Because these giveways can only be for USA/Canada posters, I personally have an additional gift set of The Heir of Night plus my YA novel, Thornspell, for international posters, plus
For everyone, up to 20 of my personal bookplates (1 each per person), designed by Peter Fitzpatrick, the artist who created The Heir of Night map, and signed by me. Just because today is a really special day for me and I really do want to share the happiness!
To join in the fun and be eligible for the giveaways just add a comment to this post. But if you like—and I would love it if you did—tell us about a day or event that was really special for you, and/or how you celebrate when something fantastic happens in your life.
As always, you can earn points (i.e. the number of times your name goes into the draw) by:
+1 Posting in the comments section
+1 Linking to this post on Twitter
+1 Linking to this post on Facebook
+1 Linking to the Supernatural Underground blog or my Helen Lowe on Anything Really on your own blog/website
+ 1 for commenting on Helen Lowe on Anything, Really while this giveaway competition is running.
Just post the total number of points that you’ve earned in your comment.
Eligibility will close at midnight, US EST today, 1 October. (Do remember to check back after, or to post your email with your comment so that I can get in touch.)