Today’s View From a Window

Not from a hotel window, from one of my house’s windows. Because I get to be home for a whole week! Whatever shall I do with myself?

(Sleep, mostly.)

Also, remember that I am doing the Reader Request Week starting tomorrow, so get your questions in — here’s the place to do that.

And also, tomorrow at 2pm Eastern I’m doing a Facebook Live event on the Tor UK Facebook page. If you want to get a question in for me there, too, here’s the page, which features instructions.

But today: time for a nap.

View From a Hotel Window 4/8/17: Madison

A lovely, sunny day in the Midwest.

Tonight Madisonians and those who choose to come into the city will have the opportunity to see me at 7pm at the Central Library. Why not take advantage of the opportunity? It will be lovely to see you!

Tomorrow, I am home. For a whole week! It’s Holy Week (i.e, the run-up to Easter), so scheduling events is kind of iffy. But then I’m back on the road on the 17th, in Santa Fe. Don’t worry, I’ll remind you next week, promise.

View From a Hotel Window 4/7/17: Northampton

Perhaps the most inspiring view yet! Don’t worry, the hotel room itself is pretty nice.

I’m in Northampton at the moment but tonight’s event is in South Hadley, at Odyssey Bookstore, at 7pm, with me, Elizabeth Bear and Scott Lynch. Our plan as I understand it is to sit around and talk about the writing life for a while and then answer questions from the audience. Like you do! Come on down, we’re going to have a lot of fun and probably you will too.

Tomorrow: I get on a plane and land in Madison, Wisconsin, where I will be at the Central Library at 7pm, sponsored by the Wisconsin Book Festival and A Room Of One’s Own. Please visit me, Madison, I don’t want to be lonely in Wisconsin.

Reader Request Week 2017: Get Your Questions In!

Next week, rather than being on tour for some or all of the week, I will be home the entire time, which makes it the perfect time to have my annual Reader Request Week! So let’s do this thing, shall we?

For those of you just catching up, Reader Request Week is when you suggest topics for me to write about, and I pick from the requests. What topics can you request? Well, anything: politics, social stuff, personal questions, silly things, things you wish I’d talk about but never do, and so on. Whatever topic you want to request, go ahead and request it. I’ll sort through the requests and start posting my responses, starting Monday, April 10.

While any topic is up for request, I do have a couple of suggestions for you, when you’re making your topic selections.

1. Quality, not quantity. Don’t just splotz out a list of very general topics you think I should cover; I’ll likely ignore it. I’m much more likely to respond to a request that is thought-out, specific and requests something interesting. Give it some thought, is what I’m saying.

2. Writing questions are given a lower priority. Because I write about writing all the time, don’t I? That said, if you ask a really interesting question or make a particularly intriguing request involving writing, I will consider it. Just know the bar is higher here.

3. Don’t request topics I’ve recently written about. I’ve included the last five years of Reader Request topics below so you can see which ones are probably not going to be answered again. That said, if you want to ask a follow-up to any of the topics below, that’s perfectly acceptable as a topic. Also, for those of you wondering how to make a request, each of the posts features the request in it, so you can see what’s worked before.

How do you submit requests? The simplest way to do it (and the way I prefer, incidentally) is to put them in the comment thread attached to this entry. But if you have a reason not to want to have your request out in public, the other option is to send me e-mail (put “Reader Request Week” in the subject head so I don’t have to hunt for it).

Please don’t send requests via Twitter/Facebook/Google+, since I don’t always see those. I credit those whose topics I write on, but feel free to use a pseudonym if you’re asking something you’d prefer not to have attached to your real name.

Reader Request Week is usually one of my favorite weeks of the year here at Whatever, because it’s fun to see what you come up with in terms of questions, and often makes me think about things I wouldn’t otherwise have thought about. So thank you in advance for coming out of left field for these.

Here are the Reader Request Weeks from the last few years, if you want to catch up and/or be aware of topics already recently addressed:

From 2012:

Reader Request Week 2012 #1: Snark and Insult
Reader Request Week 2012 #2: Would I Lie to You?
Reader Request Week 2012 #3: Why I’m Glad I’m Male
Reader Request Week 2012 #4: Future Doorknobs or Lack Thereof
Reader Request Week 2012 #5: Them Crazies What Live in the Woods
Reader Request Week 2012 #6: The Cool Kids Hanging Out
Reader Request Week 2012 #7: My Complete Lack of Shame
Reader Request Week 2012 #8: Short Bits
Reader Request Week 2012 #9: Writery Short Bits

From 2013:

Reader Request Week 2013 #1: Further Thoughts on Fame and Success
Reader Request Week 2013 #2: Regrets
Reader Request Week 2013 #3: Guilty Pleasures
Reader Request Week 2013 #4: College Education (And Costs Therein)
Reader Request Week 2013 #5: How to Be a Good Fan
Reader Request Week 2013 #6: Intuition
Reader Request Week 2013 #7: Books and My Kid
Reader Request Week 2013 #8: Whatever Topics and Comments
Reader Request Week 2013 #9: Women and Geekdom
Reader Request Week 2013 #10: Short Bits

From 2014:

Reader Request Week 2014 #1: Travel and Me
Reader Request Week 2014 #2: Writerly Self-Doubt, Out Loud
Reader Request Week 2014 #3: How I Stay Happy
Reader Request Week 2014 #4: How I See You, Dear Reader
Reader Request Week 2014 #5: Hitting the Lottery
Reader Request Week 2014 #6: Enjoying Problematic Things
Reader Request Week 2014 #7: Editorial Independence
Reader Request Week 2014 #8: What Writing Lurks In the Shadows?
Reader Request Week 2014 #9: Short Writery Bits
Reader Request Week 2014 #10: Short Bits

From 2015: 

Reader Request Week 2015 #1: Free Speech Or Not
Reader Request Week 2015 #2: Ego Searching Redux
Reader Request Week 2015 #3: Raising Strong Women
Reader Request Week 2015 #4: Bullies and Me
Reader Request Week 2015 #5: A Boy Named John
Reader Request Week 2015 #6: Me and Republicans
Reader Request Week 2015 #7: My Dream Retirement
Reader Request Week 2015 #8: On Being an Egotistical Jackass
Reader Request Week 2015 #9: Writing Related Short Bits
Reader Request Week 2015 #10: Short Bits

From 2016:

Reader Request Week 2016 #1: Living Where I Do
Reader Request Week 2016 #2: Will Humans Survive?
Reader Request Week 2016 #3: How, and If, I Will Be Remembered
Reader Request Week 2016 #4: Autonomous Cars
Reader Request Week 2016 #5: Pronouns
Reader Request Week 2016 #6: Why I Don’t Drink or Use Drugs
Reader Request Week 2016 #7: Writers and Ego
Reader Request Week 2016 #8: STEM and STEAM
Reader Request Week 2016 #9: Short Bits on Writing
Reader Request Week 2016 #10: Small Bits

So: What do you want to know this time around? Let me know in the comments. Looking forward to what you ask!

View From a Hotel Window, 4/6/17: Concord

Today, another parking lot, but an extra-fancy parking lot because it has Tesla chargers in it. I’m getting all the swank, people.

Tonight: Gibson’s Bookstore in currently rainy Concord, New Hampshire. 7pm. My understanding is that there will be pie. Oh, yes. Pie.

Tomorrow: South Hadley, Massachusetts, and Odyssey Bookstore, where, if you attend the event, you’ll get not one, not two, but three authors for the price of one, since Elizabeth Bear and Scott Lynch will also be there for fun and festivities. Come on down and see us engage in hilarious hijinks!

View From a Hotel Window, 4/5/17: Brookline

Today’s view is an interior one, into a little courtyard that features a large chess set. Wacky!

Tonight’s event: Brookline, Massachusetts, at the Brookline Booksmith bookstore. Boston, bring yourself and every single human you’ve ever met.

Tomorrow: Concord, New Hampshire and Gibson’s Bookstore. Come along! I understand there will be pie.

View From a Hotel Window, 4/4/17: Cleveland!

Ah, the classic parking lot view. So relaxing.

We had a bit of excitement today when my connecting flight into Cleveland was delayed until 5pm (from 2:30 pm originally), which means as I write this, it still hasn’t taken off. It leaving then would have meant I would have missed commitments, so I ended up renting a car in Detroit and driving into the Cleveland area. I arrived basically when my connecting flight would have taken off, so technically, I’m ahead of schedule! Go me.

Tonight’s event is at 7pm at the Parma-Snow branch of the Cuyahoga Public Library. If you’re in the Cleveland area, please come to see me.

Tomorrow: Boston! Or more accurate, Brookline, which is close enough. I’ll be at Brookline Booksmith for an evening of wacky hijinks. Please come see me.

Also, hey, did you know this year’s Hugo finalists are out? They are, and generally speaking it’s a very excellent ballot! Mind you, there’s still a couple of attempts by assholes to be assholes to everyone, but, as the kids might say, lol, that shit’s going below “No Award” like it has for the last few years. Meanwhile everything else looks pretty good. Congratulations to all my friends and the other excellently talented folks who have made the ballot this year. I’m proud of you.

The Big Idea: Griffin Barber

Never sass Eric Flint about his bestselling “1632” universe — or you might find yourself co-writing a book with him! Or so Griffin Barber tell us in this Big Idea, about the genesis of his collaboration with Flint: 1636: Mission to the Mughals.

GRIFFIN BARBER:

About eight years ago, I met Charles Gannon at The World Fantasy Convention in Columbus, Ohio. Chuck, as his friends call him, had just finished separate collaborations with Steve White and Eric Flint, and was very much on the rise. He was also kind, generous with his time, and excellent company for a drink or three. During the course of the convention, we discovered a shared love of role playing games, history, and science fiction. While we were there, he read some of my work and told me that I should write for The Grantville Gazette the magazine of Eric Flint’s 1632 Universe.

Standing on my vertically challenged high horse, I poo-pooed the very idea, telling him with great certainty, “I don’t even like time travel!”

Two years later, I had seen the light Chuck kept on for me, and had the first short story I ever submitted for publication appear in The Grantville Gazette. The next WorldCon was in Chicago and hosted the 1632 MiniCon, where Eric and the other writers of the 1632 universe get together and discuss plans and the publishing schedule for the next year or so.

Sitting toward the back and considering the fact the Mughals had just begun construction on the Taj Mahal around 1632, I raised my hand and asked Eric and the other novelists and editors, “What’s going on in Mughal India?”

“We don’t know, write it,” Eric quipped.

My first thought was an aggressive: “Challenge me, will you?”

Two years of research and a couple more short stories set in India for the Gazette, and I had Eric’s full attention. I wrote an outline for the novel, which he changed a bit and then approved. Researching still, I began writing the book.

I am sometimes pretty slow on the uptake. Like, walking-into-a-minefield-and-forgetting-which-route-I-used-slow.

It wasn’t until I started really getting into the book that I realized the many pitfalls and hot-button issues I had signed up to navigate:

Three major world religions. Well, four, really. And that doesn’t count the major and minor sects of Islam. The repercussions of the conflicts between these religions and sects are to this day being felt out on the world stage.

The systematic cultural and religious oppression in every aspect of ninety-nine percent of women’s lives.

Slavery on a scale that truly boggles the mind.

The castration of vast numbers of juveniles.

The caste system.

Once I stopped shaking (but not whining to my friends), I decided to tackle some small part of those challenges the best way I knew how:

By working with only the very strongest of female characters who make their place in the world, even against the strongest opposition.

By showing even the most vilified of history’s figures were human, and history might have been different, had their choices been better, the choices they had to make easier, and the cultural framework they were working from had allowed them to see the evil that would follow.

By avoiding the pitfall of making the Up-timers, descendants of white Europeans, the ‘saviors’ of the peoples of India.

And, lastly, by being true to my understanding of the history, religions, cultures, and figures that made all the those horrible things possible yet created monuments and art of such stunning beauty they remain among the most admired to this day.

Once I had written my bit, Eric took over. He polished, corrected, and added to it, making it far better than I could have hoped to do on my own.

What we ended up with was a tale that revolved around Princess Jahanara, eldest daughter of the Emperor Shah Jahan, her role in society, and interactions within the royal family and court. Her actions form the backbone of the book, with the information brought from the future by the up-timers putting the first cracks in foundation of the wall that circumscribes her world.
Cracks she will use to shatter the wall in future books.

Ultimately, we hope to have told a tale that gives readers plenty of adventure and fun while remaining respectful of the history, religions, and people that made Mughal India so fascinating. That said, we hope you will enjoy 1636: Mission to the Mughals.

—-

1636: Mission to the Mughals: Amazon|Barnes & Noble|Indiebound|Powell’s

Read an excerpt.

Kristine, 4/3/17

She photographs well. Also, if the writing thing doesn’t work out, I think I might have a future in department store portrait photography. Presuming there are any department stores left in the near future.

“What? You’re Going Back On Tour? Again?”

As you can see, Sugar is shocked, shocked, that I will once again be leaving the house to head out into the world for more tour stops. Trust me, that’s the cat version of very concerned.

Tonight’s stop: Dayton! This is a hometown stop at Book & Co. in Beavercreek. 7pm.

Tomorrow: Parma (near Cleveland) at the Cuyahoga Public Library. This is free event but you need to register, and you can do so at this link.

Other stops on this leg: Boston (Brookline), Concord, NH, South Hadley, MA, and Madison, WI. All the details on the official tour page. Then I get to come back home! Through Easter! I’m sure Sugar will be equally excited to see me then.

Your April Fool’s Day Fun: Build Your Own Fake Collapsing Empire Cover

As you may know, recently a fellow with more ineffectual rage than sense recently attempted to cash in on The Collapsing Empire by rushing out a “me too” book with a “me too” cover. I don’t suspect it fooled very many people, or did much other than to confirm some people have too much time on their hands, but one good thing to come out of it is that Camestros Felapton felt inspired to create a Collapsing Empire fake cover generator. An “explanation” and link to the cover generator may be found here. I had fun playing around with it, and I suspect you might as well.

Thus is represented the full sum of my April Fool’s tomfoolery today.

New Books and ARCs, 3/31/17

Before we get to April and all its shenanigans, here’s a final March stack of new books and ARCs to peruse. Find anything here you would want to take home with you? Tell us which ones in the comments!

Quick Update on Film/TV Stuff

Because the announcement of the TV deal for The Collapsing Empire has people asking questions, let me quickly catch everyone up.

Here’s where everything stands at the moment. I have four active options at the moment: The Collapsing Empire, Old Man’s War and Redshirts, and a project I can’t talk about yet (but which has been optioned and for which I’ve been paid). I have three other properties that are currently in discussion, which I also can’t talk about yet, but will when I can. Lock In was under option but isn’t now but could be again, hint hint, film/TV people.

All the active options are at various stages in their development processes and it should be noted at any step in that process, a trap door could open up and swallow the project whole. The time to get excited about any optioned work making it to the screen is when you’re actually watching it on the screen. Until then, it doesn’t exist. Projects can literally take years to happen, even when they are actively being worked on. For these as anything, patience is a virtue.

For those wondering if I’m actively involved in these projects, as a general rule at this point we negotiate me being an executive producer on the project. What this means can range depending on project, but generally means that I’ll be looking at scripts and offering other input. I’m open to writing or co-writing scripts, but often the producers already have people they like lined up for that.

Generally speaking producers and studios like to play things close to the vest, announcement-wise, until there is actually something really big to announce (like greenlighting, principal photography, casting news, etc). Often I will have projects under option that I can’t announce or talk publicly about, because we follow the lead of the people who have secured the option. If I talk about something it’s because I’ve been given clearance to talk about it. I won’t talk about stuff I don’t have clearance for, although I might subtweet about how there’s a cool thing I know that you don’t.

No, I can’t get you a job with the production. No, I can’t hire you to write the screenplay. No, I can’t help you get contacts with the production companies/studios I work with. This is especially the case if I don’t, you know, actually know you as a real live human being. No, please don’t send me screenplays/headshots/etc. I’m not responsible for any of those things. Also generally I don’t cast projects in my head until/unless they get to a point where producers ask me for casting ideas.

Yes, I’m excited about each of these. I would love for one or more to be made and to be a huge hit. No, I will not become rich on film/TV options or at least not for a long time (they pay relatively little up front; the big money is on the back end). And yes, regardless of the success (or not) of any of these, I’ll still be writing the novels I have under contract for Tor. It’s why I have a contract.

(And no, I won’t be moving to LA anytime soon. I love visiting; it’s where I grew up, after all. But I like my house and the at least 500 feet between me and any other neighbor. If anything gets made and they need me on set, I have it in my contracts the production company has to rent me an apartment.)

So that’s where everything is on film and TV deals at the moment.

The Collapsing Empire’s First Week

So, The Collapsing Empire had a pretty good first week! In terms of total sales, i.e., actual units sold, it had the best first week of any book I’ve written, ever; as I noted on Twitter, I’ve sold more copies of it in a week than some of my novels (including at least one Hugo nominee) sold in their first year. That’s a decent career progression! It’s the #1 science fiction hardcover according to Bookscan (which tracks sales at a substantial portion of the bookstores in the US) and the #17 hardcover fiction novel of any sort. It’s the #2 audio book on Audible’s weekly top ten list (that’s among all audio books, not just science fiction). It’s #25 on the USA Today Bestseller list, which tracks sales of all books (not just hardcover, not just fiction), which is the highest debut of any of my books on that list ever (previous record holder: The End of All Things, which came in at #31). We missed the NYT Hardcover bestseller list despite the book being my actual best seller ever, which suggests some other hardcovers are having a pretty nice sales week too. Good for them.

Also, hey, remember this tweet?

Well, this is what that was about.

So, in sum: Top selling science fiction hardcover in the US, second-best-selling audio book in the US, my highest debut on the USA Today bestseller list, and a TV deal.

That’s a pretty good week, y’all.

And as you may imagine, I am appropriately grateful. I’m grateful for everyone at Tor who worked hard to get the book out of the gate in such a spectacular fashion. I’m likewise grateful to the folks at Audible who made the audio book a very very big deal. I’m grateful to the booksellers who sold the hell out of the book. I’m clearly hugely grateful to everyone who picked up the book in print or ebook or audio. This has been a terrific debut, and I really couldn’t be happier, or luckier, or more mindful of how my success relies on others. Thank you, folks.

And now I’m going to catch a plane to spend a few days at home. And then: on the road again starting Monday, to see more of you on tour. This has been a great debut. Let’s keep it going.

View From a Hotel Window, 3/29/17: Chicago

Not a lot of parking lot here. Hey, it’s downtown Chicago, you’re gonna get tall buildings. My event tonight: Volumes Bookcafe, at 7pm. It’s sold out! Thank you! But if you skipped getting tickets, uh, sorry. Next time for sure.

This is also the last View From a Hotel Window for about a week, because tomorrow I go home for a four-day break, in which I get to see my family, pets, bed and washing machine, and the next event is Monday, April 3, in Dayton, at Books & Co. No hotel then, I’m just driving in from home. I may write a couple of actual posts instead! Maybe! Or at least post a cat picture or two. We’ll see!

View From a Hotel Window, 3/28/17: Dallas!

For the parking lot aficionados, bask in the glory of not one, not two, but three entirely separate parking structures! Parkingpalooza! That really catches us up on the parking lots, which had been a bit sparse the last few days.

Also: Hello, Dallas! Tonight at 7 you can see me at Half Price Books! So do! I will be lonely without you. All of you. Every single citizen of Dallas. Yes.

Tomorrow: Chicago, my collegiate stomping grounds! Volumes Bookcafe at 7pm. The event is sold out (yikes!).

And then I get to go home for a few days. Wheee!

Links for you today: A review of The Collapsing Empire at Ars Technica: The Collapsing Empire is a hilarious tale of humanity’s impending doom. And then, from me: Five Books I Was Thinking Of When I Wrote The Collapsing Empire. Enjoy!

View From a Hotel Window, 3/27/17: Houston!

Definitely not a parking lot. I could get used to this.

(Don’t worry, I’m sure more parking lots are coming.)

This is a fine time to answer a question I get sometimes about touring, which is whether I can any control (or say) regarding the hotels I’m in while on tour. The answer to this is that before the tour starts I make requests, not of hotels, but of what I’d like as my baseline for touring. In my case, I basically want three things: A decent bed, a viable internet connection, and not to be murdered when I exit the hotel.

This gives the tour booker a lot of leeway, and I assume they then move forward with hotels they’re used to working with and/or hotels that fulfill a practical purpose (like, for example, being a short walk to the event venue). So sometimes I get a boutique hotel, like today, sometimes I get a something like a Marriott or an Omni, and occasionally I’ll get something like a Holiday Inn. And in all cases: Does it have bed, internet and no murders? Great! That’ll work for me. Also, I mean, I’m not paying for the room. From my point of view it’s all good.

(Also, when I fly I typically fly Premium Economy, which (usually) means I get on reasonably early and I have overhead space for my carry-on. I don’t request business or first class because I don’t see the utility of spending hundreds more for one of those seats. I fit reasonably well in a standard airline seat, and I don’t take advantage of the “free” drinks, and most flights I take are not long enough for me to get either antsy or achey. This personal preference should not imply that other folks don’t have valid reasons to ask for business or first class seats, although I’m sure Tor is happy I’m happy with Premium Economy.)

So, that’s how I do hotels (and flights).

On an entirely different note, I wrote a piece about Seven Secrets to Writing a Best-Selling Science Fiction Novel. Just in case you were wondering.

Finally: Houston! See you tonight, 7pm, at Brazos Bookstore. And tomorrow, Dallas, you can see me at 7pm at Half Price Books (the one at 5803 E Northwest Highway, which gets a full three compass points in the address). See you there!

View From a Hotel Window, 3/26/17: Austin!

I’m in a brand-new, very hipster hotel. I kinda love it, but I’m also very clearly not its primary demographic.

Hello, Austin! In just about 90 minutes from the typing of this sentence, you can see me at BookPeople at 3pm! There’s still time to get there! Drive! Safely!

Tomorrow: Houston, and a 7pm event at Brazos Bookstore. Come see me, please. I prefer not to be alone on tour dates.

The Collapsing Empire and Word Count

Been looking at the reviews (professional and otherwise) of The Collapsing Empire and I’m happy to say that by and large they’re pretty good. There are quibbles here and there, and from time to time someone bounces off it hard, but in both of those cases that’s fine, and to be expected, since no one novel works equally well for everyone.

There has been one recurring comment about the book, however, that I’ve found interesting, which is that a fair number of people seem to think that it’s short; that is, shorter than usual for a science fiction book, or maybe a book of mine.

Is it? Not really; it clocks in at about 90,000 words, which as it happens is about right in the middle for my novels (and a standard length for science fiction novels generally). The shortest novel of mine is Redshirts, which is about 55K words long (the codas add another 20K, which brings the entire book to 75k), and the longest is The Android’s Dream, which was about 115K. The Human Division, which is a collection of stories with a novel-like arc (we usually call it a novel to avoid sounding too precious about it) is my longest book of fiction, with 135k words. Most of the books in the Old Man’s War series clock in between 90k and 100k, and Fuzzy Nation and Lock In are both around 85k, if memory serves correctly. So, again, The Collapsing Empire is right around in the middle of my book lengths.

(This estimation does not count individually-published novellas like The God Engines or The Dispatcher, or my non-fiction books.)

I’m not entirely sure what makes people think The Collapsing Empire is short, but I have a couple guesses. One is that, like most books of mine, it’s heavy on dialogue and light on description, which makes it “read” faster than other books of the same length might be. The other reason may be that science fiction books, which anecdotally have tended to be shorter than fantasy books, are beginning to creep up in word count a bit. The Expanse books always strike me as pretty hefty, for example.

While I never say never, it’s nevertheless unlikely my books are going to get much heftier than the 90K-110k word range. For one thing, all my books are contracted to be in that range. Yes, there really is a contractual length for novels, and a writer is generally supposed to come with 10% of the contracted word count on either side. So when I start organizing my novels in my brain, that’s the target I’m usually aiming for. For another thing, my heavy-on-dialogue, light-on-description general style doesn’t really lend itself to hefty tomes. I could bulk up my books a bit by adding more description of what characters look like (I’m sort of notoriously skimpy on physical description) or other such stuff, but it doesn’t really interest me to do so as a writer, unless I think doing so is relevant to the plot.

(This isn’t a backhanded diss on writers who do a lot of description, by the way — some of them do it very well, and also a lot of readers really enjoy that sort of storytelling, including me from time to time. It’s just not generally the direction my brain goes, when it comes time to write.)

My only real concern with people feeling The Collapsing Empire is short is that people then feel cheated, like they didn’t get enough story out of this particular novel. The good news for me, at least in the reviews I’ve seen, is that people don’t feel cheated, they just want more, soon. Well, provided I don’t get sucked into a jet engine or have some other tragedy befall me, there will be more, I promise. Relatively soon! And probably about 90k to 100k words long.

View From a Hotel Window 3/25/17: Nashville

I’m staying at the Opryland resort, which is immense and filled with waterfalls and inside gardens and I feel very fortunate not to have lost my way to my room. Today’s event at Parnassus Books was really wonderful, and overall I have found Nashville delightful and have been very glad that I finally managed to get here.

Tomorrow: Austin, and BookPeople, at 3pm (yes, another afternoon event). Please come see me!