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My New Favorite Picture of Me and Athena

Yeah, this is pretty much us in a nutshell.

Hey, Patrick, if you’re reading this — can I have this as my author photo for the book? Huh? Can I? Huh? Huh?

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Leftover Turkey

Being that we’re coming up on Thanksgiving and all, allow me once more to exhume the body of The Mad Turkey for your delectation. For those of you new to Scalzi.com, back when I worked for AOL full-time, I wrote the “Mad Turkey” entries for AOL’s Thanksgiving area, in which I assumed the guise of a smart-ass gobbler whacking on humans for eating his kind. Interestingly, the Mad Turkey got tons of e-mail, apparently from people under the impression they were actually speaking to a turkey. It was interesting. Anyway, here you go:

Mad Turkey Year One: Part One, Part Two
Mad Turkey Year Two: Part One, Part Two

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More Interviews

I’m all over the radio this week for Book of the Dumb. Here’s where you can find me. Links where applicable:

Wednesday, November 19, 2:30 PM EST
WAAM-AM
Ann Arbor, MI
TO BE RESCHEDULED. What can I tell you. It happens.

Thursday, November 20, 5:20 PM EST
KFTK-FM 91.1
St. Louis, MO

Friday, November 21 at 7:10 AM EST
WKRC-AM
Cincinnati, OH

Friday, November 21, 9:40 EST
KTBZ-FM
Houston, TX

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Two Things

As I’m writing this, news of the Massachusetts Supreme Court ruling the ban on gay marriage to be unconstitutional makes me think two things:

1. Good for them.

2. If Massachusetts ultimately allows gays and lesbians to marry, Democrats have about as much chance of winning ’04 as I do.

What’s interesting is that the Mass. Court didn’t say that gay men and women could marry as of this moment; it’s just punted it back to the Legislature to do something about it. Now, naturally, I’m not a lawyer, but I think this is a pretty savvy legal move on the court’s part. If it had come straight out (heh) and said that gays and lesbians must be allowed to marry, it would have opened itself up to the conservative accusation that its members were legislating from the bench. Not that conservatives really have a problem with judges legislating from the bench when the legislating goes their way, mind you, but they surely get riled up when it doesn’t. But the court sidesteps the problem by saying to the state legislature, this is your job. Fix it. Smart.

I would imagine that Massachusetts will try to dodge the bullet and allow for a Vermont-like “civil union” rather than a traditional marriage, although the lawyer for the plaintiffs in this case seems to think that won’t be sufficient to achieve what the court has ruled. I don’t have enough of a legal background, especially regarding Massachusetts law, to comment on that. But if the legislature did allow for actual, honest-to-God marriages, boy, the shit would really hit the fan. In short order the ridiculous federal Defense of Marriage Act would be constitutionally challenged, a constitutional amendment defining marriage as between a man and woman would start its rounds among the states, the South would threaten to secede and religious conservatives would riot with joy because they believe they’re mobilized to sweep into every conceivable office on the back of fear of homos while those mamby-pamby liberals are still wandering around in a daze. If you thought you were living in a theocracy now, liberals, well, just you wait.

For the record, I would expect the DOMA to be upheld (for now), the constitutional amendment to fail, barely (not on its merits, but because the only other time a constitutional amendment restricted people’s rights, it was a miserable failure), the south to remain in the US, and the theocrats (and those who know how to manipulate the reactionary religious) to win big in ’04 but to be whacked back in ’06 and ’08 when people remember that while God is great and God is good, many of His self-appointed representatives here in the United States are annoying prigs who won’t be happy until everyone’s doing the missionary position once a month, tops.

In other words: Interesting times, no matter what. Welcome! What, you didn’t want the 21st Century to be boring, did you? Silly people!

Here’s a link to the ruling.

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Book is Out — and Cheap!

I think it’s safe to say Book of the Dumb is officially out there on the streets now, so it’s time to start agitating for your own copy in your local bookstore. However, if you like you can buy it directly from the publisher for a pretty wacky low price: $7.77, which is steeply off the $12.95 list price. But you have to hurry, relatively speaking, since this price is only good through the end of the year. But, holy cow. At that price, you can buy copies for all your friends and most of your enemies.

The Bathroom Reader folks have also put up sample articles from the book for your perusal. Here’s a short one, here’s a medium one, and here’s a long one.

Also, dig the ad over at Fark.

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Ted At it Again, Again

My pal Ted Rall has got ’em howling for his head again with this column in which writes from the perspective of one of the Iraqi insurgents recruiting new members. Instapundit calls him “loathsome” while Andrew Sullivan expresses the belief that Ted actually wants our troops attacked and killed.

I personally strongly doubt that. There’s a difference between writing what you think a Iraqi insurgent recruiter might say and think, and believing all of those things yourself. Clearly Ted thinks the Iraqi invasion was a mistake as carried out, and the occupation/rebuilding has likewise been botched, and these factors have combined to make the place somewhere Americans and those who aid them can get killed. Using the voice of an Iraqi insurgent recruiter is of course a massively inflammatory way of making the point, but that’s Ted for you. I would not immediately equate the use of an inflammatory rhetorical device with a desire on Ted’s part to have our people killed.

I won’t argue Ted’s points for him, since on Iraq we diverge on a number of issues. I supported the invasion of Iraq and I strongly believe that we need to stay in there for a comprehensive rebuilding as we did in Germany after WWII (during the aftermath of which American troops were attacked by German resistance, so there are not a few parallels between now and then). Likewise I’ll not try to argue with those who think Ted is loathsome or evil or unAmerican or simply insane. Ted writes in an intentionally antagonistic style in both his cartoons and columns; he’s going to get that from people, and it would be difficult-to-impossible to argue Ted doesn’t invite it. He appears to accept that he’s not going to be great pals with a lot of people out there. And as I’ve said before, he’s a big boy; he can take care of himself from all comers.

But with all due respect with Andrew (who gave me a nice link for my literacy drive, so I’m in his debt for that) I’m hesitant to let the assertion that Ted wants our people killed to stand uncontested. It seems unlikely. I would imagine, from Ted’s point of view, that if we wanted our troops and their supporters killed, he would not have brought up the point that people are hoping to kill them in the first place. The column is, I think, a cautionary tale rather than an aspirational one.

Update: E-mails and comments disputing much of a parallel between the German resistance after WWII and the resistance currently in Iraq, the argument being the resistance in Iraq is rather more severe than it had been in Germany. I would agree the situations are not perfectly consonant, but the idea that the dregs of a failed regime would fight on is on point (one difference between the two situations would be that after Germany fell, fighters from outside its borders didn’t sneak in to mount a resistance against the Allies).

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Scalzi Christmas Update II

The “A Scalzi Christmas Literacy Drive” tally: here’s where it stands as of 11:26am 11/13/03: $437.51. Again, not bad at all.

If you’re new and wondering what the heck I’m taking about and why people are throwing money at me, here’s the scoop.

Everyone else, don’t worry, I’ll be doing a real entry update in just a few minutes.

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Yargh!

Swamped. DVD reviews. Newsletter. Novel (must. Finish. Chapter). Intend to update later today. No promises.

However, this is a good time to remind people that when I’m slacking off here, I’m almost certainly writing about something or other over at By The Way. I am contractually obligated to make five entries a day over there, you know.

Also, a quick note for those of you who have ordered and/or are looking around for Book of the Dumb — I have reports that Amazon is now shipping copies of the book, even though at this moment they still say it hasn’t arrived. But obviously they can’t ship what they don’t have, so clearly, it’s in. As soon as I get official confirmation of the fact, I will let you know.

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A Scalzi Christmas Update And Radio Note

Donation update: As of 11:34 am EST on 11/11: $282.96. Very nice. Several people have also donated rather more than the suggested contribution — thanks very much to you for that. I think we’re well on our way.

Now comes the hard part — the continual (and hopefully not too annoying) flogging of the project. Glenn Reynolds and Andrew Sullivan were kind enough to provide links yesterday, so I got a lot of traffic from the both of them (as well as from Joanne Jacobs, who linked too). I’ll undoubtedly grovel to other bloggers and journalers for links as well before I’m done. So if you see me popping up unexpectedly in your e-mail queue begging for a link, you’ll know why. Please don’t toss me out with the spam.

Mind you, if you want to link without me groveling, by all means do so: Here’s the link:

http://www.scalzi.com/whatever/archives/000554.html

You can even use the little graphic I made. Sure, go ahead and link to the picture on my site. I don’t mind. I pay for oodles of bandwidth. Besides, others link to graphics on this site all the time. A few weeks ago, a fetish community called “Bound in Stripes” linked to a graphic on the site here, which, as you may imagine, was rather surprising to me.

Radio: In about half an hour I’ll be doing an interview on Book of the Dumb for the The Bill Handel show for KFI in Los Angeles. However, don’t rush to your radios, Los Angelenos; It’s being taped to run sometime next week. So should you hunker down in front of your radio all next week, waiting for the sound of my voice? Well, if you must. Ob my end, however, it’s more to the point that if you suddenly hear me emanating from your speakers of a morning, you won’t be too surprised.

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Happiness Is…

…being able to use your own book as a reference when someone asks you a question about astronomy.

Clearly, not a universal sort of happiness, and I hope you’ll excuse the pun. But, happiness nevertheless.

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A Scalzi Christmas: My Donation Thing

I talked about this briefly last month, and I’ve decided to go ahead and do it. I’m running a donation drive here at Scalzi.com.

Here’s the deal: In December, I’ll write three Christmas-themed fiction pieces: Two short stories, one poem. Everyone who donates money through my PayPal account (here’s the link to that) between now and New Year’s Eve will receive access to a Web site where I’ll post these stories, as well as provide the stories in downloadable/printable format. All monies received (minus PayPal’s processing cut) will be donated to Reading is Fundamental, which supports child and family literacy here in the US. The Suggested Donation is $3, but you can donate more or less; it’s entirely up to you.

So that’s what I’m doing. Here’s why:

Over the last year or so, readers have shown that they will financially support the online writers whose work they admire. Andrew Sullivan is making a decent chunk of change with his pledge drives, and Josh Marshall was able to convince his readers to underwrite a reporting trip to New Hampshire during the 2004 primary. Readers have also shown they will support the things their favorite writers support as well; when Pamela Ribon asked her readers to donate a book to the Oakland Library when the library’s budget was cut, readers responded with over 500 books. My own experience with online readers also shows that they willingly pay if they feel they’ve received something of value: Over the four years my “shareware novel” Agent to the Stars has been online, I’ve collected thousands of dollars from readers who were not obligated to pay me a penny but wanted to compensate me for the enjoyment the book gave them.

In the five years I’ve written the Whatever, I’ve never asked for money or put up a tip jar to financially support what I do here because, simply put, I don’t need to or want to: My other writing pays the bills, and I enjoy the freedom of writing what I want when I want to write it. But at the same time, I’m aware my audience — and the audience for online writing — has grown to a point where, by appealing to my readers, I might be able to do something meaningful for a cause I’d like to support.

The cause I want to support at this moment is literacy. I have an obvious professional reason for supporting literacy, of course: I’m a writer. I want people to be able to read my stuff. It’s in my economic self-interest to cultivate readers. But even if it were not (if I suddenly ditched writing to start a career in interpretive dance or discount retail welcoming, say), it’d still be something I support. In our complicated culture, being literate is the critical tool in being able to think for one’s self; People who read are not at the whim of what others want them to think. A literate person has access and avenues to many points of views and a fuller perspective on the world in which he or she lives. Not every literate person chooses to think independently, of course. But every literate person can. In a place and time where so many people have invested so much money and effort in telling other people what and how to think, we need all the independent minds we can cultivate.

Literacy is also the great equalizer. A book doesn’t care who reads it. It doesn’t matter to a book how much you make, who your parents are, where you live, what you’re wearing, who you love, what you weigh or what you had to eat (or didn’t) for breakfast this morning. Its purpose is to be read, and it’s cheerfully indiscriminate about who performs that role. Books are positively indiscreet; they’ll talk to anyone who picks them up. A poor child with a love of books has a chance, and you’re hearing that from someone who ate more than his share of government cheese growing up.

Giving a child a book is an implicit act of faith in the child. You when you give a kid a book, you’re saying that you believe they have the means within them to understand it, even if at that moment they haven’t yet learned the skill. Kids know this, you know, even if they don’t always have the means to express it. They know what books are, and they know what they represent. When you give a kid a book and say this is for you, those four words encompass more than the paper-and-binding object you’re pressing into their hands. They encompass everything we understand. Most of the time, kids get that on one level or another. And even when they don’t you can still see them flip through the pages of a book, sucking up everything in them and imagining the world in the book that takes place off the edge of the paper. Books imply more — more words, more pictures, more adventures, more understanding. More.

One of the reasons I like Reading is Fundamental (here’s a summary link for the organization) is that it actually puts books into the hands of kids — hundreds of millions of books over the years — and lets them keep them for good. I think that’s terribly important. The organization also fields hundreds of thousands of volunteers to help kids sharpen their reading skills and provides other literacy services, including family literacy programs that encourage adults to read as well as (and to) their children. All that is worth supporting. Naturally, I’ll be cutting them a check from my own bank account. But I’m also hoping to convince you to contribute something as well.

I don’t expect you to do it purely out of the kindness of your own heart, however, which is why I’m offering an exchange. You contribute to Reading is Fundamental by making a donation to me through PayPal. In exchange, I’m offering three new, original pieces of Christmas-themed work — I’m envisioning one humorous piece, one Christmas poem (also likely to be humorous) and one short story — to be posted on the 8th, the 15th and 22nd of December. I’ll put these pieces on a restricted Web page and provide those who contribute with the password. So that’s three totally original pieces, each positively wallowing in Holiday spirit!

(Note to those of the not-Christian faith: Yes, I’m focusing on Christmas; it’s the holiday I grew up with. But I promise to make the stories accessible and enjoyable to all.)

The amount I suggest you contribute is $3. Why? Well, three stories. Three stories, three dollars — you see where I’m going with that. Also, that way, there’s still a goodly amount left over after PayPal takes its processing charge. Now, you don’t have to contribute $3. If you feel like contributing more, then by all means go right ahead. If you feel like contributing less, that’s fine, too (although try not to dip below a buck — less than that and PayPal’s cut starts being a huge percentage). I’ll keep a running tally on the site so you can see how it’s going.

You may ask: What assurances do I have that what you write will be worth my $3? My answer: Well, I do have a track record of selling writing — yea, even fiction — so I feel pretty confident in my ability to deliver three bucks worth of holiday entertainment to you. If at the end you’re not fully satisfied, send me an angry e-mail and I’ll apologize abjectly. No money back, though — it’s going to buy books for kids.

You can donate through PayPal here. I have a business account with PayPal, so even if you don’t have a PayPal account, you should be able to make a payment with a credit card. Astute observers will note this is the same account through which I accept payments for Agent to the Stars; I’ve cleared out the account so there’s no confusion as to what money goes where, and between now and the end of the year all monies received will go to RIF. So if you send me money for Agent between now and 2004, congrats, you’re contributing to literacy!

So there it is: Three Christmas stories, $3 — all the money (minus PayPal processing) going to literacy. I hope you’ll think that’s a good deal. And I hope you’ll tell other people about it. Really — if you only link to one thing off the Whatever this year, this is it. Thanks.

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Listen to Iron Maiden, Baby, With Me

Athena likes music, which should comes as no surprise since all kids like music. However, she likes some music more than other kinds and I have to say that both as a father and a person who evaluates music on a professional level, I’m pleased with the musical choices she’s been making.

For example, number one on the Athena Hit Parade recently is “Cruel to Be Kind,” the late 70s pop gem as covered by Letters to Cleo. I played her the 70s version as well, but she’s less enamored of it because she’s all about the girl power these days. Be that as it may, she’s the only kid at her preschool who knows the words to a Nick Lowe song, and that’s got to count for something. Also big on Radio Athena: “Song 2” by Blur, “Teenage Dirtbag” by Wheatus, “Istanbul (Not Constantinople) by They Might Be Giants,” “Spiderwebs” by No Doubt, “Octopuses’ Garden” by the Beatles and “MMMBop” by Hanson, which, before you say anything, is the best Jackson 5 song of the last 25 years, and they wrote it themselves. So you know, cut them some slack.

Now obviously, she’s being fed music by me, so to some extent her tastes reflect my tastes. But on the other hand, there’s lots of music I like she doesn’t have the time of day for, and that’s fine with me. The ultimate plan here, of course, is to get her used to good music (of all sorts of types) so that she doesn’t go through childhood without the cultural defenses that will allow her to listen to whomever the next Britney/Hillary Duff might be, and understand on how many levels that kind of music truly sucks. This might make her an outcast, sure. But she’ll be an outcast with exquisite musical taste.

The picture above, incidentally, has a story behind it (how could it not?). In the “Teenage Dirtbag” song, there’s the line that goes “I’m just a teenage dirtbag, baby/ Listen to Iron Maiden maybe/ With me”. Athena was singing the line, so I asked her if she would like to listen to some Iron Maiden. Her response: “Sure!” So I pulled up “Wasted Years” (one of the tamer Maiden tracks in terms of lyrical content, in case you’re wondering — it muses about life on the road as opposed to, say, slaughtering Indians by the thousands or dying with one’s boots on) and let her have a listen.

Her verdict: “Well, I kind of liked it. But I kind of hated it, too. All at the same time.” That sounds about right.

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Thoughts on Matrix Revolutions

I saw Matrix Revolutions yesterday afternoon, and I was actually surprised at how much more I enjoyed it than I had expected to; thus are the advantages of coming in with reduced expectations. I understand that other people were upset that the tantalizing pseudo-philosophical nature of the first film wasn’t carried on to the other two films, which are ultimately more action-oriented. But, to get all zen on your ass, this is what you get for focusing on what you want something to be as opposed to focusing on what something is. Reloaded and Revolutions are sci-fi action films, with a (very) light frosting of cyberpunk messiah gnosticism. Deal.

Interestingly, the most obvious indicator of the direction the second two movies were going in came from one of the Matrix spin-off bits: The Animatrix, which collected up nine anime shorts about, and set in, the Matrix universe. In fact, I suggest that if you really want to get a handle on Reloaded and Revolutions, rent or buy The Animatrix and sit through the shorts. In addition to providing offhand bits of information, it clues you in: What the Wachowskis really wanted to do was make a live action anime film.

And they did, particularly with Revolutions, which is everything anime is, from intense and graphically violent SF action to the incomprehensibly lame dialogue — one dialogue scene between “The Kid” and Captain Mifune (yeah, guys, show your influences, there) could have been bodily ripped out of any of the wall o’ anime I have here at home. I’ve always thought the lame anime dialogue was just a matter of something being lost in the translation from Japanese (either in the language or in the social construct that accompanies language), but who knows. The point is moot, anyway.

So, as anime, Revolutions is bang on. But of course most film critics, despite their gushing love for Spirited Away, and passing acquaintance of Akira, don’t know from anime (I suspect Roger Ebert is an exception, as he is in many categories regarding film criticism). So I don’t think they really get what they’re looking at. Not that this is a complaint about the film critics, mind you — if the Wachowskis did in fact pattern these two movies on an anime structure, then they did it running the risk that critics unfamiliar with the format wouldn’t get it. I don’t want to attempt to pass myself off as an anime expert — really, on that path lies madness — but thanks to my OPM gig I’ve seen enough of it to recognize what it is when I see it, and enjoy the better iterations of the genre, which Revolutions is.

(Aside: Most of the comparisons Revolutions has garnered have been to video games, mostly because film critic here are more familiar with video games than anime. I don’t think the video game comparison is a good one personally, although I admit this opinion may be tainted by the fact that the “Enter the Matrix” video game sucks on multiple and repeating levels.)

Also, you have to hand it to the Wachowskis: If they had gone into Warner Bros. and Village Roadshow and said “Give us $300 million to make anime,” they’d’ve been laughed out of the room. They pulled a fast one on the studios and got away clean and made a bundle of cash doing it.

So my recommendation to you: Go into Revolutions understanding you’re watching anime. Do that, you’ll have a grand time. Don’t do that, and you take your chances.

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Confederate Dean

This is going to be a surprising comment coming from me, all things considered. But here it is: I don’t have a problem at all with Howard Dean saying he wants to be the candidate for the guys with Confederate Flag stickers on their pickups. Really, I don’t. If the Democrats are going to win, they’re gonna need those guys. Oh my, yes they are.

Anyway, let’s do the political calculus on this thing. What does Dean lose by saying something like that? He upsets a certain number of Democratic voters early in the election cycle, who may decide to vote for someone else in the primaries. But if I may, let me suggest that Dean’s a done deal in the sense that barring a sudden and inexplicable collapse of support, he’s going to contest for the nomination all the way through. What he wins is the attention of the aforementioned Confederate sticker dudes, not all of whom are racist (just deluded as to what that flag represents), and not all of whom are stupid. I don’t expect any Democratic candidate to swing the majority of Rebel Boys his way, but I do think more might be in play than the RNC thinks, And maybe this puts Dean on their radar. Given the utter incompetence of the Democratic party in making its case to poor and working class white people, who vote for Republicans for inexplicable reasons, I would suggest Dean needed to make a statement like this to get his shot across the bow.

And honestly, now. Come November 2004, are the people offended by Dean’s Confederate comment not going to vote for him because of it? Would they rather have four more years of Bush? I don’t think so. They already made the Nader mistake once — even dumbass liberal freaks know better than to go down that road twice. Ultimately, there’s almost no long-term political downside for Dean, and he has a lot to gain. At the very least, when it comes the Rebel Boys, they’ll consider Dean first before the other candidates (excepting possibly Clark). Dean wins coming and going.

Let’s call the “Confederate” moment for what it was: Dean’s “Sister Souljah” maneuver. Worked for Clinton, who in the later years of his presidency was hailed by Toni Morrison as the first black president, and whose current offices are nestled quite comfortably in Harlem. It can work for Dean.

It is just cynical politics on Dean’s part? Could be. Or he could be telling the truth: Someone needs to go ask all the Rebel Boys what they really get out of voting for someone like Bush, whose economic policies ram all working class people of every color right up the cheeks. If the other Democratic candidates are too worried about political correctness not to speak the language these guys talk and address them on their terms, I don’t see how they can expect to get their vote in 2004. And if they’re not planning to try to get the vote of millions of southern white guys, then they’ve pretty much already lost and can go home now.

I don’t like Confederate flags, but allow me to suggest that being fond of the Battle Jack doesn’t mean you’re not worthy of good government — if for no other reason than the same federal government that they get is the same federal government the rest of us get. The other Democratic candidates seem to be willing to make the voters come to them; Dean is willing to go to the voters, and risk short-term alienation for long-term benefits. I think it’s a smart move. I would suggest to you it’s probably not the last time we’ll see something like this.

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Bragging

Hey, Athena! What’s your name in American Sign Language?

That’s right!

Well, almost right. The thumb should be in on the “e”. But Athena will sometimes write letters backwards, too. She four. She’s learning. It’s cool.

Athena’s ASL letter capacity comes courtesy of her preschool, which is teaching the kids the ASL alphabet and a couple of selected signs. I approve of this heartily for two main reasons: One, ASL is legitimately a second language (which is to say that it has its own grammar and rules), and so I’m happy to have her exposed to different ways to communicate. Two, because Athena likes to spell things out with ASL, she’s learning how to spell more words. So there you have it: Two educational birds killed with one stone.

And of course Athena knows how to milk it: Athena sprung her ASL spelling trick on Krissy by getting her attention and then spelling “mommy” and pointing to her. From that point forward in the evening Athena could have trashed the house like a rock star and Krissy wouldn’t have minded. She followed it up by coming over to me and flashing the “I love you” sign. Yeah, this kid is good.

An additional note to drive you other parents absolutely insane with rage: The fabulous preschool where they’re teaching our kid sign language and other useful skills, and which is staffed totally by people who either have advanced educational degrees or are working toward one?

$2 an hour.

Ah, country living.

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To the Comments

Rather than posting an entry today, I invite you all to peruse the comments thread on yesterday’s entry, in which I beat on someone for saying something I consider to be incredibly stupid. It’s me in high dudgeon. The tragedy is is that we seem to be talking at cross-purposes. The point he wants to make (as far as I can see) is a fine one, just not at all related to the point I want to make. It’s interesting reading.

It’s also a reminder that sometimes I rear up like an angry snake. Sorry.

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Something Sad

I note the burning of artist James Hubbell’s home in By the Way. This is a very sad thing.

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It’s In!

Look what arrived via Fed Ex today:

No, not the girl. She was already here. And when we do ship her, she usually goes UPS. I mean the book.

The arrival of the book here means they’ll be arriving in your book store soon. Go and demand it! Or alternately, order it here. Or here. Or here!

Did I mention they make lovely gifts?

Off to go celebrate.

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Wow.

This is disturbing. Yet another reason I don’t ingest aquatic mammals.

Update: Boing Boing gets the scoop on “That photo has got to be Photoshopped.”

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Cover Art

Amazon finally got around to replacing a horrible blue “temp art” cover for Book of the Dumb on its order page with the actual cover, which you’ll see below:

This is something of a relief, as I was the opinion if the book came out and the temp cover was still there, no one would buy the book because it would have appeared to have been made out of construction paper and mucilage. At the very least, this cover looks like someone gave some thought to the cover design.

Someone asked when the book would actually hit the shelves. My understanding is any second now. I will of course let you know when I get my own personal copies.

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