Tuesday, October 6, 2009
A New Addition to the Family: Portugal

The Name of the Wind just came out in Portugal. They tell me that at the beginning of the month it was actually #7 on the bestseller lists over there. Which, I will admit, gives me a little bit of a tingle....

I haven't actually held one in my hands yet, but the cover looks pretty cool:





I always like seeing new covers for the book. Especially when the art has obviously been commissioned especially for the book.

Though I've only recently become a father, I've compared writing a book to having a baby for years. My mom used to refer to it as "her grandbook." And one of my friends used to ask about it in those terms. We wouldn't see each other for months, and when we got together and caught up on the news, she'd eventually ask, "And how's the baby doing...?"

Now that I've been a dad for a couple of weeks, I realize that the baby analogy is better than I thought. Before I was mostly referring to the emotional connection you feel to your own book. But now, having dealt with a newborn, I realize that writing a book is not entirely dissimilar to actually raising a child.

You feed it. Change it. Cuddle it. Dress it. Undress it. Change it. Feed it. Change it. Change it. Get it to take a nap. Change it.

And then, at the end of the day, you look at it and realize that it's pretty useless.

Don't get me wrong, you love it. You love it like nobody's business. But unless you're an idiot, you realize this thing really isn't good for anything yet. You're going to have months and months of thankless, repetitive work before it's capable of going out into the world on its own.

Later, when your book is published, it's very cool and very scary. That's when your baby has grown up enough to leave the nest. It's out there, meeting people all on its own. If you've raised it properly, it hopefully makes a good impression. Hopefully it makes friends.

But the foreign editions of the book are... different. It's still my baby, but it's not *really* my baby. It's like someone has cloned my baby and dressed it up in lederhosen and made it smoke a pipe for marketing reasons.

Yeah. The analogy really starts to fall apart after a while, I guess.

What was my point? No point. I don't always have to have a point, you know....

Wait! I guess I do have a point. It's that sometimes they make your baby smoke a pipe and you have to shrug it off. You don't know what sells books in Bangladesh, or Berlin, or Brigadoon. For the most part, you have to trust that the publisher knows what they're doing. For all you know, those Doonies are loonies for pipes...

But it's nice when you see the marketing and it appeals to your aesthetic. Like the trailer I posted before. Or this picture that I stumbled onto when I was googling up an image of the cover for this blog.




(Click to Embiggen)


I'm guessing this is a promotional poster. If it is, I wish I had a copy. I like the tagline across the top. "Kvothe: Magician, Musician, Thief, Assassin and... Hero."

Hell, if I'd have been able to come up with promo copy like that on my own, it wouldn't have taken me five years to sell the thing.

Later, you hoopy froods....

pat

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Thursday, September 17, 2009
New coolness
So The Name of the Wind is coming out in Portugal soon. Look what they're doing to promote the book:





How cool is that?

pat

P.S. In case you're wondering, the answer is pretty fucking cool.

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Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Interview at Fantasymundo

The book's doing pretty well over in Spain, from what I understand. So earlier this month I did a bit of a Q&A interview for a Spanish website called Fantasymundo.

To my pleasant surprise, they didn't just post up the translation of my answers, they put up my original English version as well.

That means my fellow monolingual English-speaking brethren can head over there and read it if they're interested...

Keep in mind you have to scroll down past the entire Spanish interview to find the English version.

pat

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Thursday, May 21, 2009
Signing In Taunton..
Sorry for the delay getting this information to you, but here's the information about the signing in Taunton on the 26th.

I'll be signing books and hanging out in the store from 1:00 until 3:00 in the afternoon. Then, for anyone who's interested, we'll wander off and find a place to hang out and talk. I'll answer questions, and maybe do a bit of informal reading. Maybe something from book two...

Here's the info for the Waterstones in Tauton, I think:

The County Hotel, East Street
GB - Taunton TA1 3LU
Tel: 01823 333 113

Gotta Run, I've got my Forbidden signing in 10 minutes...

pat

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Monday, May 18, 2009
The Upcoming London Reading (and my growing pigeon obsession.)

It's 4:30 AM here in Paris. Sarah has been asleep for hours. And I'm exhausted from a long day of fighting the urge to try catching a pigeon with my bare hands.

I'm fairly certain I could do this. What I don't understand is *why* I want to do this. I know I shouldn't for good reasons: ethical and social, not to mention my own health and safety. Nevertheless, this is a growing desire in me, and it takes more energy to fight the impulse every day. I don't know how much longer I can resist...

I said I'd post up a picture of the Amsterdam reading - So here you are:




We had a great turnout, and they were a great audience. Thanks for coming everyone.

Oh my god. Sarah just oinked in her sleep. It was like a tiny little snore that she closed her mouth in the middle of. It sounded just like a tiny little piggie, "oink." It was the cutest thing.

Okay, she can't know that I told you about it. It will be our little secret.

I've already mentioned my London signing. That's at Forbidden Planet and everyone is welcome to come.

There will also be a reading afterwards, unfortunately, it will only have about 50 seats available. It will be on Thursday May 21st at 7:30 PM right after the signing at Forbidden Planet.

Since there probably won't be enough seats for everyone interested, there's going to be a drawing to see who gets to come. If you'd like to be one of the chosen few, send the answer to this question to the address listed below:
"Kvothe is the main character in the fabulous The Name of the Wind, but what is his name when we first meet him?"
Now, do I have to state the obvious here? You should only send in the answer if you're interested AND AVAILABLE TO ATTEND THE LONDON READING. This means if you work on Thursday night, don't e-mail my UK publisher with the answer. Because then they might draw your name and it might screw someone else out of the chance to go to the reading. Similarly, if you're in jail, don't e-mail my UK publisher with the answer. If you live somewhere like, say, Montana, don't e-mail my UK publisher with the answer.

The last one doesn't have anything to do with you being too far away to go to the reading. I just don't like folks from Montana.

Okay. We clear on the basic principles here? Don't you embarrass me in front of my British publisher. I swear I will pull this blog right over....

You can mail them at: gollancz.feedback [squiggly at sign thinger] orionbooks.co.uk.

Lastly, thanks to the kindness of several fans who have offered to drive my worthless right-side-of-the-road American ass around, I WILL be doing the signing in Taunton on the 26th. I don't have all the details yet, such as address, exact start time, etc. But I'm figuring it will be in the evening.

Just giving y'all as much advance warning as possible, and I'll post the specifics as soon as they become available.

More soon,

pat

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Friday, May 15, 2009
UK signings...

The Amsterdam signing was lovely. I have pictures that I'll post up soon.

I wanted to post up the details about the London signing as soon as they became available, so here they are:

Thursday May 21st
6pm onwards
Signing
FORBIDDEN PLANET
179 Shaftesbury Avenue
London
WC2H 8JR

This will just be a signing, not the reading/signing/Q&A session I normally do. We're having trouble finding a big space for a reading to hold a reading where we don't start to violate fire codes if 100 people show up. So if you're looking forward to hearing me talk, Manchester is looking like the better option.

I'm also hoping to have another signing in Taunton on the 26th, while I'm visiting Glastonbury. I'd like to do it, as it's in a different corner of the UK. But I'm having trouble figuring out how I'm going to get there, as I won't have a car, and there's no train station in Glastonbury.

An Edinburgh signing isn't looking likely at this point. Bookstores there seem strangely reluctant.

More soon,

pat

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Monday, May 11, 2009
When in Rome....
Well folks, I'm in Rome. And you know what they say, "When in Rome, do what the Romans do."

Personally, I'm assuming that the Romans blog.

My overall impressions of Rome will have to wait for a while. As will the anecdotes of my first few fumbling days as a world traveler.

For now, I just wanted everyone to know that:

1. I did not die in a terrible plane-type accident.

2. I will be posting up a blog about my UK reading/signing dates and times as soon as they're all set up and solid. So far we've got the firm details on a Manchester signing at Waterstones on the 28th swtarting at 7:00. More specifics so that will be up on the Tour Schedule page soon.

3. Lastly, for those of you that care about this sort of thing, I got the first draft of book two finished Manuscript printed and mailed to my editor two hours before I got on my plane. To say it was a bit of a rush doesn't really convey the frantic nature of the past two weeks of my life.

The manuscript is a beast, by the way. Here's a quick picture I snapped of it. Included is the US hardcover to give some perspective.


Align Center


Thing is huge. Took more than 3 reams of paper to print. Took six hours just to spellcheck....

Do you know what it's like to run spellcheck for six hours? It's like a party in purgatory. A party in purgatory where all they have to drink is sugar-free Kool-aid, and the only game to play is Monopoly, and none of your friends show up.

On an unrelated note, recently, I got a really funny piece of fanmail from someone telling me how to live my life. I was going to post it up in a blog and make fun of it, but then I wondered if that would make me a dick.

I mean, it is my nature to mock. It is my way. It's who I am. I try to be honest about the me that I show here on the blog.

But at the same time, when I wrote the College Survival Guide, I developed powerful mocking abilities. Like superhero-level stuff. I don't know if it's fair to turn the withering blowtorch of my sarcasm onto an unsuspecting person who just happens to be a clueless, controling, passive-agressive fucker.

What do y'all think? Mock or not?

More later, as soon as I can get internet access again.

pat

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Monday, May 4, 2009
Signings in Rome and Amsterdam.

Okay folks, I've got the first round of foreign book signings organized.

First off, we've got two in Rome:

Location: Le Storie
Date: Saturday, May 9, 2009
Time: 6:00pm - 7:00pm
Street: Via Giulio Rocco, 37/39
City: Rome

Here's the link to the appropriate facebook event, if you're into that sort of thing.
And a link to Le Storie bookshop.


Location: Fanucci Bookshop

Date: Sunday, May 10, 2009
Time: 6:00pm - 7:00pm
Street: Piazza Madama, 8
City: Rome

Here's the facebook event.


Then we've got one in Amsterdam.

Location: American Book Center – ABC Amsterdam
Date: Thursday, May 14, 2009
Time: 6:30pm - 8:30pm
Street: Spui 12, 1012 XA
City: Amsterdam, Netherlands

Here's the link to ABC bookstore.
And the facebook event.

In Amsterdam, because more of the locals speak English, I'll actually be doing a little bit of a reading, then a Q&A session before I sign books. I love doing Q&A.

Even better, my Dutch translator will be be making an appearance at this signing too. Lia Belt was my very first translator. Not only did she really hold my hand through the process, but she helped me understand a lot of the dangers of translation. It's because of her that I've made a point of getting in touch with all my other translators since then, trying my best to work with them so as little is lost in translation as possible.

So I'm excited to meet her. I've invited her along to sign books too. After all, the Dutch version is more than half hers, and it's always seemed like a shame that translators don't get more credit for the work they do.

Edit: Additional: my Italian translator will be around during the Saturday signing in Rome.

Anyway, those are the first three signings we have planned. If you know anyone that might be interested, you'd be doing me a great favor if you passed the information along to them. We're setting these things up pretty quickly, so there isn't much time for word to spread.




(This illustration has nothing to do with a book signing.
I've merely inserted it here to confuse you.)


Despite the cool cover, I won't be doing any public signings in Paris. It's just too early. The book hasn't been out long enough there for people to want to show up for that sort of thing. And if there's one thing more depressing than sitting in a bookstore for two hours while everyone tries to avoid eye contact (As was the case in many of my early US signings) it's sitting around in a bookstore in Paris while people avoid making eye contact.

And for those of you in England, fret not. Things are in the works. Fabulous things. We'll have at least one in London, and hopefully a few more scattered around the rest of the country.

I'll post details as soon as those plans firm up. Soon.


Best,

pat

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Thursday, April 30, 2009
Me llamo Kvothe


Can we pretend that I didn't just watch this, like, five times?





I think we might need to have a video contest at some point. Consider this fair warning....

pat

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Monday, April 27, 2009
French Edition of the book.


Happy Birthday French book!




(Click to Embiggin)


Okay. Fine. It came out two days ago. Happy belated birthday. I'm a bad parent.

Personally, I dig the cover.

pat

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Wednesday, April 22, 2009
A Love Note to Germany (And Other Things)

Okay. There's been a flurry of excited messaging ever since I mentioned I'd be making a trip to Europe, and was willing to sign books while I'm over there. Details are over here on the previous blog.

Here are a few general comments and some answers to questions in response to the hubbub.


To my German Readers:

Oh my German readers. I do love you. I love you with a fierce love that is big as the sky. I know there are many of you. I know you would like me to stop in your country and sign books and do various authory things.

Do not think that I scorn you. Do not think that I neglect you. Do not think I fail to appreciate you, because I do. It is because of you that I can now legitimately call myself "International Bestselling Author" Patrick Rothfuss.

Before that, I was forced to call myself merely "Skilled Lover of Women" Patrick Rothfuss or "That Strange Guy Who Sits in the Back of the Coffeeshop All the Time" Patrick Rothfuss.

I appreciate this. You must believe me. I love you.

But as for making a stop in Germany this time around. I just don't think I'm going to be able to.

You see, Sarah, she says. "I would like to go to Rome."

And I think, "Rome? Have they done five hardcover printings of my book in Rome? No. That was Germany. Did my book get all manner of cool reviews in Rome? No. That also was Germany. What of the swank little bookmark? Surely that was Rome? No. It was not."

But you see, Sarah, she has this baby in her. This baby gives her remarkable powers.





I say to Sarah, "Where would you like to go on your trip to Europe?

Sarah says, "I would like to go to Rome."

And lo. We go to Rome.

Sarah says, "Also, I would like to see Paris."

And suddenly, it is so.

I'm not saying I'll never visit you, Germany. I will. I promise. It's just that when I do visit, I want everything to be perfect. I don't want to rush this part of our relationship. I don't want to go too fast. We need to be sure we're both ready. I want this to be special for both of us.

Perhaps I'll come to visit when book two is translated. Or maybe when your paperback comes out. Hopefully, if the German publishers are willing to help, we can do it up proper and I'll hit a bunch of places all over Germany, rather than just making a two-day stop in one city.

Be patient, I love you.

Sincerely,

pat


To my readers in Dublin:

As above. I was really hoping to make it there during this trip, but it just didn't work out. You'll see me before too long. I promise.


To my readers in other countries:

I would love to come to Sweden. To Ireland. To Spain. To Belgium. To Estonia. To Finland. I would love to come to Russia. To the Czech Republic. To Turkey. To Wales. To Portugal....

I'm sure you can see the problem.

If you can't see the problem, it's this: if I went to all of these countries, I wouldn't have time to do anything but drive around. I wouldn't see anything except through the window of a train. It's pure logistics. I can't do it all this trip. Someday. Hopefully.


To people eager to help schedule a signing:

1. If you want your local bookstore to host a signing, you need to tell *them* you're excited about it, not me. I'm already interested in doing a signing. So are you. We're on the same page. We've established a rapport.

But without the bookstore it's just not going to work out. It's like a three-way. It doesn't matter how much you and me want it. Without that third person, it just doesn't work out.

2. If you have a friend/relative/lover/former roommate that works in a bookstore, and you think they'd be excited to help schedule a signing. Contact *them* about it, see if they're really interested, then have them drop me a line if they are.

3. If you want to contact me about a potential signing, use the contact form. If you post it in the comments, I won't know how to get in contact with you. I will be similarly helpless if you shout the information out your window, or write it on your bathroom mirror. Sad but true.

4. If your town isn't on the list of places I'm stopping, I probably won't be able to come out and do a signing. The possible exception to this is Manchester, as it's on my way between London and Edinburgh. But even that depends on the interest of the local bookstore. (See #1)

That said, if you're actually one of the folks in charge of scheduling events in a bookstore or a library, and you'd REALLY like me to stop in, you can still drop me a line.


A few quick answers:

Q: "Will I be posting up the dates, times, and places of the eventual signings?"

A: Um... Yes? Rest assured. I'll be posting them here on the blog, and on the Tour Schedule Page.


Q: "How's the book going?"

A: Very well. Don't bug me about it. It harshes my vibe.


Q: "Does Sarah have any news about the baby?"

A: I just asked her. Sarah says: "It's freaking huge."


Q: "I live in a town in Europe! We have a bookstore! You should come here!"

A: That is not a question. Also, please see above points one through four inclusive.


Hugs and kisses,

pat

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Tuesday, January 13, 2009
Introducing - the Slovak and Polish versions of the book.

Well it seems like most folks would like to see more Survival Guides. So we'll do that. I'll post up a few more of the old ones before too long, and send out a call for letters when I'm ready to start answering new one. So start stockpiling your problems now.

And, for those of you who give a care, here are the newest editions to The Name of the Wind family.




This cover should look familiar to most of you, as it's pretty much the same as the UK cover.




(Click to Embiggen)

Soon, my thumb will be so famous from all these appearances that it will become a celebrity in its own right. I predict it will leave for Hollywood, have a whirlwind affair with Kate Moss, develop a drinking problem, and then eventually come crawling back to Wisconsin. Which is a good thing because I need it to hit the space bar.

Anyway, the Polish version of the book has lovely paper, and a new cover which clearly depicts the scene where Kvothe, um... goes forth. Into... some manner of... um cloudy desert.

I kid. I kid. I know that not ever book gets its own tailor-made cover. By now, when a version of my book comes out with a cover that's obviously a piece of stock-art, I feel like it's one of my kids coming up to me and saying. "Guess what happened today? I went out and fought a dragon, and met a guy with a nipple ring, and I rode an elephant, and it was really cool!" I know it's not the truth, but it's still my kid, and I can't be too upset. I'm just glad he's out there, meeting new people.

The other thing I do is make up little stories that go along with the cover. For this one the story would be:

Kvothe strode through the dread portal, leaning heavily on his staff. A lesser man might have been concerned by the skulls, or been anxious about the unnatural weather that loomed on the near horizon.

But Kvothe was made of sterner stuff than this, and his thoughts dwelled on ponderous matters: "My hat," he thought to himself. "is certainly pointy. But is it pointy enough to impress the Archduke Isigniglidir?"

This morning he had been so sure, but now, looking at the Archduke's tower, Kvothe worried. This was obviously a man who was not fond of half-measures where pointy was concerned. Kvothe also wondered if it might also explain why the Archduke's new wife seemed so dissatisfied in her letter. "The tower." She had written. "Should have been my first clue."

Go on, take a stab at it yourself in the comments section. It's tons of fun.

pat

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Tuesday, November 4, 2008
The Art of Letting Go....

Today, as I sat at my computer answering e-mail and worrying about the election, a lovely person in Japan sent me this photo....




(The Great Buddha in Kamakura, reading my book.)


Seeing this picture made me realize that somewhere along the line, I have lost my way.

I used to be very Buddhist in my thinking. Well... perhaps not *very* Buddhist. But somewhat Buddhist, especially for a westerner. My philosophical beliefs are an eclectic hodgepodge at best, but there's some good stuff in Buddhism. Stuff that makes a lot of sense.

One of the foundation stones of Buddhist philosophy is especially appealing to me. Namely, that desire leads to suffering.

For example: You see a kid at the grocery store. He wants a candy bar. His mom says no. Result? Suffering. He pitches a fit. Similarly, when I was in my early twenties, I spent a long time desiring various types of romance, and because none was forthcoming, suffering ensued. Much suffering.

It's simple. The more things you desire, the greater your potential for suffering. It's basic math. And when you stop to think about it, the solution is obvious. If you want less suffering in your life, you simply have to reduce your desires. You need to let go of things.

This particular truth fits in well with other parts of my personal philosophy: my love for simplicity, my appreciation for the cynicism of Diogenes, and my basic bumish laziness.

I used to be good at letting go. I kept my life simple and had few desires. That was what made it possible for me to work on my book for more than a decade without wanting to kill myself. I told myself the truth: that it would probably never be published. I did my best to avoid that desire (sometimes with only moderate success) and therefore saved myself a lot of disappointment over a great many years.

But lately, I've fallen from that path. I worry endlessly about all manner of things. I feel responsible for so much. I want to make sure book two is really good. I want to to be pleasing for my fans and successful for my publisher. I want to lose some weight. I want my country to get back on track, to take care of its citizens and stop shitting on the rest of the world. I want, I want, I want....

And for a year now, I've been wondering why, for the most part, I'm not really happy. It sounds really horrible to say, but it's true. By the numbers, I'm way ahead of the game. But emotionally....

Here's the deal. It's one thing to be unhappy when your dog gets hit by a car and your house burns down. You should be unhappy then. Everyone can understand that. That's a sensible response to your situation.

But when your book gets published, becomes a bestseller, and gets translated into a billion languages you're supposed to feel good. You're supposed to feel super-amazing-good. But a lot of times I don't. That's not sensible. I don't understand it, and it frustrates me. Not only that, but it seems downright perverse at times. Then on top of it all, I feel like a real shit for not constantly feeling like the universe is giving me a hummer.

So why, I constantly ask myself, was I so perfectly content as a poor teacher with an unpublished book and 20,000 dollars of credit card debt? Now I own a goddamn riding lawnmower, and I worry about my lawn. For over a year now I've had a solid knot of tension nestled between my shoulderblades like a lump of hot lead. I worry about the next translation of my book. I worry about my carbon footprint. I worry that in writing this blog, I'm going to come off as an utterly self-absorbed frothing emo titmonkey.

But writing about it helps. That's what I do, you see. I write about things. That's my deal.

People who don't write usually assume that writing is a process of communication. They think I have something in my head, and I'm just transcribing it onto the page.

But that really isn't the truth. Writing is a process of discovery. I think about things, but then when I start to write about them, I learn things while I write. I figure things out *because* I write. This happens in poems. In those silly satire columns I write, in the novel, and today, it's been happening here in the blog.

Right now in fact. I think I've finally put my finger on something important. Desire. I have been too much with the world lately, getting and spending. I think I need to start letting go.

I realize that might sound ominous, but it isn't. I feel good. Better than I have in months. Letting go shouldn't be seen as giving up, either. In Buddhist philosophy, once the problem of suffering is realized, there is still right thought and right action.

So now I'm going to go vote, largely without desire. It feels good letting go of that. Later I will work on the book without desire.

In between those two, I think I will go the Kebab House for lunch. Sometimes they serve a great soup called "Fire and Rice." That, I think, I will desire just a little. Because it is really good soup, and no matter what else I might be, I'm still only human.

Later everyone,

pat

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Wednesday, October 22, 2008
I'm Kind of a Big Deal (in Germany)

So the German edition of the book came out just a couple of weeks ago.




(As always - guest starring my thumb)


The book has serious heft. Good paper. Good binding. It is, in a word, gorgeous.

Holding this book in my hand made me realize that over in Germany, they consider my story fairly high-class. It make me realize that over there, I might even be considered literature.

There have been hints of this all through the publishing process. First, the publisher itself is very prestigious. (So they tell me.) Klett-Cotta carries very few fantasy authors, including luminaries like Tolkien and Peter S. Beagle. Klett-Cotta also assigned a very skilled translator to the job, which is always a good sign that they're taking things seriously.

But that's not what convinced me I might be thought of as literary over there.

Another big indicator was when someone from Germany came out to interview me. My first thought was, "Who did this poor guy piss off at work? How low on the totem pole in do you have to be before they send you to interview some newbie fantasy author in Middle-of-Nowhere Wisconsin?"

But it turns out the interviewer was Denis Scheck. I didn't know it while the interview was taking place, but he's actually a celebrity over in Germany. You know how Siskel and Ebert were celebrities because they reviewed movies? Well over in Germany, apparently, they care about books. Because of this, they also care about the people who read books.

Yeah, I know. Weird.

Anyway, while I didn't know this guy was a celebrity, I figured out pretty quickly that he wasn't there because he was getting punished. He was there because he was really, really good at his job. I've done a lot of interviews over the last year, and I'll admit that by the time he showed up, I'd gotten a little blase about it.

But when he started talking, I realized he was playing the game at a whole different level. He was really clever, talking about things no interviewer had ever brought up before, asking questions I'd never been asked. Asking questions that I'd never even *considered *before. I remember at least one occasion where my answer was: "Wow. That's a great question.... I have absolutely no idea how to answer it."

If you're interested (and can read German) his review is up over here. Or if you're monolingual like me, you can click on the link *below* the interview to see a video clip of Denis talking about the book on his television show. Personally, I thought it was pretty cool even though I only know enough German to catch about a third of what he's saying.

But back to my previous point. Even after I found out who Denis Scheck was, I didn't realize that over there my book might be considered literary.

The fact that they converted my author photo black-and-white was a good indicator....




(Click to embiggen)


Why? Because black-and-white is classy. It's arty. It's posh. Don't get me wrong, I'm fond of my blue photo. But you have to admit that it makes me look like a Muppet, or a character out of a Harry Potter movie. But in B&W I look, if not distinguished, then withing spitting distance of respectable.

Or within spitting distance of being the sort of person who would never use the term, "within spitting distance."

Still, none of these things are what convinced me. This is what did it:





That's right. One of those built-in ribbon bookmarks. So genteel. So suave. Nothing screams sophistication like a ribbon bookmark. It's the textual equivalent of wearing a silk smoking jacket and speaking with an Oxford accent. It is, in fact, dead sexy.

Today, my friends, I join the ranks of the literati.

Go me.

pat


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Tuesday, September 23, 2008
A New Edition to the Family


It goes without saying that becoming a published author has changed my life.

If someone were to ask how, specifically, I'd probably mention one of the big things. How surreal it is when people recognise me in public. Or when I show up to a reading or a signing and there are dozens of people there. I could mention how I travel a lot more now, or the fact that I can spend up to 5-6 hours a day just keeping up with my e-mail correspondence.

But truthfully, one of the thousand small changes has been how I feel about getting the daily mail.

Up until about a two years ago, when all this publication stuff started, my mail was pretty normal. Most of it was junk: fliers, credit card applications, cupons. The stuff that wasn't junk was usually unpleasant, like bills or notifications about my student loans.

Yeah sure. On some rare occasion something nice would show up. A card from mom with some cash in it, mail order something-or-other, a letter from a friend. But those were few and far between.

But now I love to get the mail. Every day is like a potential Christmas. I get all sorts of cool things. I get foreign contracts that I read and sign and mail back. I get free copies of books sent to me with the hope that I'll read them, love them, and blurb them.

And I get checks in the mail. I won't lie to you, that's really cool. A lot of my life I've been pretty poor. Not *really* poor, of course. But student poor. I spent 11 years as a college student, and there were a lot of times when I was broke, the next paycheck was three days away, and the credit card was full. I'm sure a lot of you have had similar times in your life.

I remember getting sick once, and not having enough money to buy aspirin or orange juice. Another time, I remember digging through my cupboards, examining the cans of weird food. The food that you have left because you hate it. I remember thinking, "How old is this can of vegetable barley soup? Will it kill me?" Once I got behind on my rent and my landlord burst into my little one-room apartment, waking me from a dead sleep and threatening to throw me out onto the street.

Fast forward to now. Sometimes I pick up my mail and there's a check in there. A check for money. A check for money that I didn't even know would be showing up. Best of all, it's money that I don't immediately need for something, like paying my overdue phone bill, or buying groceries, or settling a debt with a friend who lent me a little bit to get by.

But perhaps even cooler is when things like this show up without my expecting it:


(Click to Embiggen)

I didn't know the Danish version of the book was close to being finished. I'd never even seen the cover until I opened the envelope a couple days ago and found this inside.


I think this is translation number... six? Let me think, so far I've had editions in the UK, the Netherlands, Italy, Japan... Number five then. Six will probably be the German version that's coming out later this month. I'm excited to see that one too.

Later all,

pat

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Thursday, August 14, 2008
Titillation
So today I had a phone conversation with some people. It was a conversation with cool implications for the future. It's a long way from anything certain, and I can't tell you what it was about, but I can tell you my girlfriend's reaction....

When I finished with said conversation, I called Sarah and told her about it.

Then she said, "That's so exciting that I'm going to puke."

As you can see, I'm not the only wordsmith in our relationship.

In lieu of cool news. (That's a fun sentence, by the way. You should say it out loud. Do it.)

Here's a photo someone sent me of the Italian version of the book, on its home turf. Note the awesome castle in the background.




Later all,

pat (From a crappy hotel computer in Indianapolis.)

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Friday, July 25, 2008
The new website.


So my Japanese publisher has put up a website to help promote their newly published translations of the books.

Personally, I think it looks cool as hell.





Of course, I can't read a lick of Japanese...

Well, that's not entirely true. I know two words, and one of them is a profanity. Neither one shows up on this page though, so that doesn't help me very much.

This makes me feel a little bit like a caveman. All I can do is point at this and grunt. I don't know what it means, but it's pretty.

For example:





I mean, this is just cruel. There's obviously something cool going on here, but I have no idea it is. There's a flow chart about my book (I assume) and I haven't the first clue what it means. For all I know it could be speculation as to the future sexual interactions of the characters. In which case I'm guessing Bast would be the box in the upper righthand corner. Yeah, the one connected to the most arrows, pointing in as many different directions as possible.

In related news, the Japanese publisher has asked permission to translate some of my blogs and post them up on the site over there. I gave the thumbs up, but I do wonder how well some of my rantings will come across when translated. Also, I make a lot of odd references that I doubt people in other cultures will be able to catch.

And just so you know, they might also be translating the comments too. So beware, now if you make a lame post, people in two different languages will laugh at you. Generally speaking though, I've been very impressed by the signal to noise ratio in the discussions here. I think the fact that they're consider the comments worth translating is a testament to that.

Anyway, if you'd like to poke around the Japanese site on your own, here's the link.


Later all,

pat


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Friday, May 11, 2007
3 - 2 - 1 Contract
So for the last couple months we've been selling the foreign rights to the book. And by "we" I mean my agent and his compatriots. My contribution usually amounts to listening to the offer, then asking, "Is it a good offer?" They explain to me why it is, in fact, a good offer. Then I say, "Okay, let's do it." Yet another example of why it's so important to have an agent you can trust.

More recently, the contracts have been coming in. It's a new and exciting world of me not really knowing what the hell I'm doing. You know those reading comprehension tests you took back in high school where you had to read a passage and then answer a question? These contracts are like that, except instead of a low SAT score, I'm worried if I don't pay attention someone will slide in some a clause that gives them the legal right to one of my testicles or something.

This is the most recent contract to show up, the Russian one....




I'm not exactly sure what they use for money over there. Rupees or something like that. Regular money would be nice so I could pay off my credit card debt, but once these contracts go through, I'll be able to buy a better shield and stock up on arrows. If I have enough left over after I'm done with that, I might buy a blue potion, too. Just to be safe....

Later all,

pat

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