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Report From Ravencon

What a great time at Ravencon in Richmond!  This is always one of my favorite conventions because it’s big enough to have a lot to do and small enough to spend quality time with friends, readers and other authors.

For once, Michael Ventrella and I weren’t on every single panel together, although Michael graciously asked me to join hin on two books marketing panels.  Alan Wold did his wonderful writing workshop, and then Alan, Peter Prellowitz and I were together on a new two-session workshop on plot and character.  That was really a lot of fun, and there are plans to do the plot/character workshop again next year!

One of my favorite panels was with Toni Weisskopf (Baen Books) along with the cover artist for John Ringo’s books, where we were talking about everything that goes into making a great cover.

Coyote Run played a concert (alas, I had a reading during the first hour), and I caught the last half—they are always fantastic.

Kudos to the con suite team admirably headed up by Leigh and Alexis Gilliland.  A con moves on its stomach (and on caffeine).

We shared the hotel with a high school prom.  I don’t think it occurred to the seniors at the prom that they were every bit as much in costume as we were, or that it was just as much of a fantasy for them as for us.  (I was, however, very impressed by the Klingon in a formal purple outfit with a parasol.  Nice touch.)

My next convention is Balticon on Memorial Day weekend—hope to see you there!

Book News

The Sworn is in bookstores and online now!  Also in Kindle and Nook, with audiobook coming soon.

Thanks for your patience—Dark Lady’s Chosen is finally available for Nook!

Just signed contracts for Dark Lady’s Chosen to be translated into French and for  The Sworn and The Dread to be translated into Polish.  The first three Chronicles of the Necromancer books came out in French last year, and I felt bad that French readers had to wait for the resolution to Dark Haven’s cliffhanger ending, but publishing is not a quick business!

Remember—all the books are available in Nook, Kindle and audiobook, so tell your alternative-format friends!

If you couldn’t be at one of my recent signings, you can stop by any of the stores where I’ve just been to pick up signed copies of all the books!  Barnes & Noble, Pineville, NC; Barnes & Noble, Colony Rd, Charlotte, NC; Books A Million, Concord Mills; and Barnes & Noble, Huntersville, NC.  If you are a frequent con-goer, Larry Smith Books also has signed copies of my stuff.

Signings and Events

I will be in stores doing book signings and at genre conventions throughout 2011, and I love to meet readers, so please stop by and say hello!  Here’s the list of events so far (we’ll keep a running list posted on the Events tab).

Can’t make it when I’m at the store?  Most stores have signed copies of all the books after the event, so be sure to stop in!  If you call ahead before a signing, many stores will let you buy the book(s) over the phone so I can sign them when I’m there, and you can pick them up later.

May 27 – 29:  Balticon, Hunt Valley, MD

June 4 – 6:  ConCarolinas, Charlotte, NC

June 21:  Hawthorn Moon Online Sneak Peek Event

September:  DragonCon, Atlanta, GA

October:  Capclave, Gaithersburg, MD

October 24 – 31:  Days of the Dead Blog Tour

November:  Philcon, Cherry Hill, NJ

December:  Watch for new in-store dates in the Charlotte area

Ghost in the Machine Podcast

I host a podcast called The Ghost in the Machine Fantasy Podcast (www.GhostInTheMachinePodcast.com) where I introduce my listeners to authors, artists, publishing pros and other interesting folks show up on the podcast, so please check it out!

In  April/May, guests include: April guests included Brian Kosciencki, Chris Pisano of Fortress Publishing and author Alexander Jablokov (The Day the Wires Came Down).

Alexander Jablokov talks about introducing pros/cons of literary elements in sci-fi/fantasy, while Brian Kosciencki and Chris Pisano talk about their experiences running a small press in today’s publishing economy.

In May, guests are Chelsea Quinn Yarbro, author of over 80 novels, on making a long series work and paranormal mystery writer Casey Daniels (Pepper Martin mysteries) about merging magic with mystery.

Coming in 2011 on Ghost in the Machine, guests include Karen Miller, MaryJanice Davidson, Shirley Damsgaard and more!

Disquieting Visions—my “other” blog

Disquieting Visions is co-hosted by J.F. Lewis (Staked, Revamped, Crossed), Crymsyn Hart (paranormal romance), Tina McSwain (Charlotte Area Paranormal Society) and me.  Podcast guests are also invited to post a guest blog on my Disquieting Visions group blog (http://DisquietingVisions.wordpress.com).

In April guests are Michael Ventrella, Charles E. Gannon, Gail Carriger and Michele Lang.  May guests are:  Lori Handeland, Chris Jackson, Danielle Ackley-McPhail, and David Coe

For March/April, my blog post topics include What Writers Wish Readers Knew; Fandom Needs its Glee; Tribal Markings; Cons in Pop Culture.

If you like the books, “Like” WinterKingdoms on Facebook

If you’re on Facebook, the place to talk about The Winter Kingdoms books is at Facebook.com/WinterKingdoms.    I do a monthly Q&A and love to get comments and questions.

This month’s topics include: Small cons vs. large; Short fiction vs. long; Get more from your cons; Thoughts from the con suite.

Join the conversation!

I’m also on Twitter @GailZMartin, and be sure you check out my shelf of books I’m reading and just finished on Shelfari!