Author Archives: Pat

Novelties: IndieGoGo Edition

As some of you may already know, we’ve been shipping out our summer fundraiser perks for a while now. If it weren’t for the constant arrival of the UPS truck, we would be buried by the sheer mass of packages we’re assembling every day.


And that’s not an exaggeration. Look at the upstretched hand of some poor lost Worldbuilders Minion waving for help from behind this stack of bundled packages. We have to keep shipping things out or we’re going to be crushed to death.


So rest assured that if you jumped into the Geeks Doing Good fundraiser a couple months back, your goodies are on their way to you.

While it’s true that we’re busy with fundraiser fulfillment, we still have some new items for Novelties that have been showing up here at Worldbuilders HQ, including a couple of signed books. For example….

  • First edition copies of The Mad Apprentice. Signed by Django Wexler.

_DSC0539 Django Wexler is a seriously cool dude, and he’s helped out with Worldbuilders before. This time, he donated signed first edition copies of his newest book, which is the second in The Forbidden Library series. If you want to be cooler than all of the other kids, you should grab your copy and support Worldbuilders in the process by buying it right here.

_DSC0544 This is a collection of the webcomic my good friends Pat Johnson and Nate Taylor did for years. I wrote the introduction, and this is from the limited edition that was signed by contributing artists as well. There were only 50 of these, and it has art from Worldbuilders’ own Brett, Shane Tyree, and Phil Foglio, just to name a few. If you want in on a hilarious webcomic, grab this collection over here.

  • Boss Monster 2 from Brotherwise Games.

_DSC0542 Boss Monster is a house favorite here at Worldbuilders HQ. When we get together and hang out, or have a team game night, it’s usually one of the first choices to play. And now that Boss Monster 2 is out, we have even more to play.

One of the cool things about Boss Monster is that every card is a geeky reference to a retro game or gaming archetype in some way. Boss Monster 2 is no exception. Here’s someone you might recognize. PatCard(Wrathfuss the Namer.)

It’s kinda uncanny how easily that managed to capture me using that 8-bit style….

There’s a few other faces in there you might recognize.


Yup. Characters similar-to-but legally distinct from Sanderson, Gaiman, and Martin all make cameos as heroes you must destroy in your dungeon. And we have copies we can sell where the profits go to Worldbuilders. You can grab them right here.


As an added bonus, we still have some the limited edition Bast and Bastas cards they made as a promo. They play in either this game or the previous one. If you don’t already have them, we’ve got those for sale right here as well

Since we’re adding new stuff up in The Tinker’s Packs, we thought we’d add some of the items we launched in the summer fundraiser to make them available for people who missed out.

For those of you who bought one of these things in the IndieGoGo, don’t worry, we’ve already shipped out all the rewards containing these items. So if they aren’t already in your hot little hands, rest assured that they’re in the mail, making their way toward you…

  • Auri’s Gear Window Clings.


D’aww, look at how happy Rachel is…

These are pretty cool little things. We couldn’t choose between black and white when we were planning for the fundraiser, so we gave up and did both. A pair (one in black and one in white) is available in the store now for just $6.


Here’s the white one on Amanda’s car, looking particularly glorious. Put them on your computer, in your car, on your desk, on your cat, whatever you can think of.

  • 2016 Beyond Words author calendar.


Lauren Zurchin drove around the country again to take photos of authors in fantasy-themed costumes and settings. The calendar turned out great, and it had a great bunch of authors this year.


The authors included Leigh Bardugo, Jim Butcher, Melissa de la Cruz, Tony DiTerlizzi, Kami Garcia, Lev Grossman, Robin Hobb, Tahereh Mafi, Garth Nix, Ransom Riggs, Margaret Stohl, Scott Westerfeld, and me. If you follow this link, you can see some pages, and grab a copy if you’re interested.

  • Karen Hallion 2016 Happy Endings calendar.


Next year’s Hallion calendar is extraordinarily beautiful. The art is stunning, and Brett really outdid himself on the calendar pages themselves, giving each one a theme based on Karen’s art, and putting in little extra details everywhere for those of you clever enough to notice.

I’m immensely proud of it. You can get yours over here, and it’s early enough that no matter where you live you should have it in time for the new year without too much trouble at all.

  • Cheap 2015 Hallion Calendars

As some of you already know, August in the 2015 calendar features a few characters that might be familiar to you…. Denna-final

This picture pleases me to no end, so I figured we would discount the few remaining copies of this year’s calendar we have, while we put up the 2016 version.

So: Beautiful NEW Hallion Calendar: Available here for $20.

The calendar for 2015: Available here, marked down to $5 for those of you more interested in the art than keeping a calendar anymore.

  • Polka Will Never Die


In related news, we had some trouble with people making illegal versions of the Polka shirt a while back.

Screen Shot 2015-08-03 at 11.31.35 AM

I was filled with furious anger when I heard. But that is a story for another day. (And another blog.)

The problem is dealt with for now, but since people were excited enough about the shirt to start stealing it, we figured we’d give y’all a place to pre-order on the Tinker’s Packs.

Now, note that this is a pre-order. These aren’t shipping yet, because the folks who jumped into our Geeks Doing Good fundraiser need to get theirs first.

But rather than have people buying them from someone who is taking advantage of the designer who made the shirt and the charity, we’ve decided to make them available to purchase now. If you go in and order one there, you’ll be first in line to get yours after the other orders ship.

Show your love for Butters, and do it for a good cause. You know you want to.

* * *

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg, folks. In another month or so, we’ll be rolling out more of the items after we finish shipping things out to folks who backed the IndieGoGo.

Want to get an immediate heads-up when we launch new stuff in the store? Since I don’t always blog about it, the Tinker’s Packs has a newsletter for those of you who hate missing out on limited edition stuff.

But if newsletters aren’t your thing, you can always keep an eye on Facebook and Twitter, or just check the online store regularly.



Posted in BJ Hiorns Art, Geeks Doing Good, Nathan Taylor Art, Novelties, The Tinker's Packs | By Pat13 Responses

Being Evil

Tonight, I was playing in the living room with my girlfriend (Sarah) my oldest son (codename Oot: age 5.5) and my youngest son (codename Cutie Snoo, age 1.5)

It wasn’t anything fancy. Nothing organized. I’d just come back from recording this week’s podcast with Max Temkin, and rather than head upstairs to do more e-mail, as I am wont to do, I decided to stay downstairs and play with the kids.

A large part of this is because my Cutie is at a magical age. 18 months is pretty awesome. After a bit of a hiatus, he’s saying da-da again, and it pulls at my heart.

Those of you without kids might have trouble understanding how enthusiastic an 18 month-old can be. Let me explain.

You know how excited a dog can get when you’ve been away for a couple hours? (Or let’s be honest, when you’ve just left the room for a couple minutes). At 18 months, my little boy has that level of enthusiasm. He runs up to me, his face all lit up, grinning, his legs doing that straight up-and-down stomping walk that’s the closest he can get to a run.

And all the time he’s saying “da-da-da-da-da-da!”

So yeah. It’s pretty fucking amazing. I’m not going to lie.

Anyway, I’m hanging out with my family, and Oot walks up to Sarah and says, “I’m so… thirsty! Can you please… get me… a drink of water?”

His performance makes it clear that he is about to die from thirst. People in the desert don’t have it this bad. He’s really going full Shatner in his performance.

Sarah starts to get up to get him a drink of water. She does this because she loves him.

Sarah and Oot

(Exhibit A)

“You know where the water is,” I say to Oot. “You can get yourself a drink. You’re a very grown-up child.”

I say this because I love him too. Sarah and exhibit our love in different ways. She wants him to be happy now. I want him to be happy in the future, and part of that is making sure he’s self-reliant.

Plus he’s five. If we were living in the wild, he’d be hunting and cooking birds on his own. So yeah. He can get his own drink of water.

But here’s the thing, it’s a little late at night. The kitchen is on the other side of the house. It’s a whole, like, 50 feet away. And it’s late in the evening, so that part of the house is kinda dim.

And he’s five, so he’s a little scared of being alone, and of the dark.

“Will you come with me?” he asks.

This is a familiar dance. We want him to do things for himself. He wants company. We want him to be brave. He wants to feel safe.

Nobody’s wrong here. We all want good things. But they’re in conflict.

“You can do it,” I say. “I know you can.” (Don’t get me wrong here. I’m not some muy mas macho monster. If it was fully dark in there, I’d work with him. But it’s not. He can handle it. He has before. It’s good practice for him.

I’ll tell you a story,” Sarah says.

This is a compromise we use sometimes. If he hears our voices, he knows he’s not alone. So one of us will tell him a story, and it will help him go somewhere in the house when he’s a little spooked.

“I’ll tell you a story,” I say.

“I want mom to do it,” he says, moving toward the baby gate that leads into the dining room.

He’s on to me.

Once there was a little boy who really liked candy,” Sarah says. “So he decided to go exploring.

I’m going to be honest here, Sarah’s narrative structure isn’t the best. Her themes can be kinda muddy sometimes, and, truthfully, her stories are often really lacking in terms of the Aristotelian unities. But even so, I know she’s up for this. Two minutes of story will get Oot into the kitchen and back. I watch as he opens the gate then turns on the light to the dining room. Out of our line of sight. Out of his line of sight. He’s gone.

So one day he walked out into the the backyard and he found–

A Thousand Angry Ghosts!” I say. I don’t yell it. But I say it in a really loud voice. My phantom of the opera voice. I project from my diaphragm.

And from the other room, comes a high, piercing scream. It lasts for a full two seconds.

Then Oot comes running back into the living room.

You’re going to have to trust me on this, it was *super* funny. Sarah will back me up on this.

You see, most days, I’m a good dad.

Other days, I’m an AWESOME dad.

Stay tuned, everyone. Soon we’ll have bedtime stories.



Posted in babies, Beautiful Games, Because I Love, Cutie Snoo, Oot, podcasts, Sarah | By Pat26 Responses

The Things that Children Know

Every night I’m at home, I read to my little boy before he goes to sleep.

“Little” I say, but he’s creeping up on six now. It doesn’t matter. He will always be my little boy.

Every night we read. Usually at least 10 minutes. Usually not more than an hour. A couple short chapters. A dozen pages. Maybe just a picture book if I’m exhausted. Maybe just a page or two. But I always try to read him something.

We worked our way through all the Little House on the Prairie books this way. We read the Hobbit together. I hope to do Narnia soon.

I may not be the best dad all the time. I travel too much. I work too much. I have a short temper. I’m overly critical. But in this one thing I know I’m doing something right. Reading at night like my mother read to me.

Right now we’re between books. We took a run at Treasure Island, and he seemed to be enjoying it fairly well. But it was requiring a lot of explanation and on-the-fly editing….

And let’s be honest here: *I* wasn’t that into it. Besides, the further we kept reading, the more concerned I was going to have to explain what sodomy was.

So tonight we were looking for something to read, and I wasn’t quite ready to start Narnia yet… so I pulled a couple books off the shelf and let him pick.

He picked this:


The Velveteen Rabbit. It’s a book I’m terribly fond of, though I haven’t read in ages. In fact, the only piece of art I have on my wall here in my home office is a piece of art based off a quote from the book.


(Witness the unspeakable glamor of my office.)

Yeah. I could take a better picture, but that would mean standing up. Trust me, it’s art based on a quote from the book. My mom gave it to me.

And just to be clear, it’s not that I don’t *have* any other art. It’s just that I’ve only lived here, like, six years, and I haven’t got around to decorating yet.

Anyway, I didn’t know we had a copy of this book until I pulled it off the shelf. But I was delighted when Oot picked it, because, as I’ve said, the book has a special place in my heart.  I was eager to read it after a decade or two away from it.

So I start reading, and in about three pages I’m crying so hard I can’t actually make words.

This is the passage that did it to me. It’s the same quote that’s on my wall:

“What is REAL?” asked the Rabbit one day, when they were lying side by side near the nursery fender, before Nana came to tidy the room. “Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?”

“Real isn’t how you are made,” said the Skin Horse. “It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.”

“Does it hurt?” asked the Rabbit.

“Sometimes,” said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. “When you are Real you don’t mind being hurt.”

“Does it happen all at once, like being wound up,” he asked, “or bit by bit?”

“It doesn’t happen all at once,” said the Skin Horse. “You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.”

Even just cutting and pasting that into the blog made me all teary again.

So there I am, sitting on the couch, crying too hard to keep reading, and Oot looks over at me and says, “Are you all right, Dad?”

Luckily, this sort of behavior isn’t something out of the blue for him. Sarah is a Olympic-caliber crier. She cries when she’s happy. When she’s sad. When she’s ambivalent. Because she loves me. Because she’s mad at me. Because she’s mad about the fact that she loves me. Pretty much any emotion, action, situation, or change in temperature can lead to weeping.

And I’m only being slightly hyperbolic here. Ten years back, I asked Sarah how much she thought she had cried in her life. Something quantifiable: volume of tears shed. She guessed it at somewhere over seven gallons. And honestly, I think she might have been conservative in her estimation.

So. Oot is no stranger to out-of-the-blue crying. He gets up off the couch, gets me a tissue, and brings it back. He’s a good boy.

As I sit there, trying to pull myself back together, I try to think of how I can explain why I’m crying. The truth is, I’m not entirely sure myself.  Sometimes a story just hits me a certain way and it destroys me. The Last Unicorn Does it all through the book. Gaiman’s Sandman in places.

But while Oot is a pretty perspicacious little guy, he doesn’t have the vocabulary I’d need to explain this. Or the experience base. Or the emotional wherewithal.

Still, I feel like I owe him an explanation. There’s nothing obviously sad in this part of the story. Not even a little. That’s got to be confusing.

“Some things are hard to explain,” I said. “Because some people know things that other people don’t.”

He’s listening to me. He nods.

“You know how you’re scared of going into the basement?” I ask him.

He nods again, his little face serious.

“That’s something you know,” I say to him. “You know that the basement is scary when it’s dark.” I pointed to myself. “I don’t know that. It’s hard for me to understand because I’m a grown-up. That means if you tell me that the basement is scary, I have to get you to explain it to me. Or I just have to trust you when you tell me it’s scary to you.”

He nods a third time. This makes sense to him. He knows that I don’t have a problem with the basement, but at the same time he knows it’s scary.

“There are some things only I know,” I tell him. “When I read this part of the book, I get happy and sad and I can’t help crying. You don’t feel that way, and it might not make sense to you, but it’s still the way I feel.”

He reached out then and patted my arm. “That’s okay, dad,” he said gently, “I believe you.”

He’s my sweet boy.

More soon,


Posted in Oot, Stories about stories. | By Pat52 Responses

Some News, and Events in Indianapolis

Heya everybody,

Sorry the posts have been a little slim here lately. It’s been a strange, busy couple weeks at Rothfuss HQ. Aside from the fact that it’s the middle of convention season, some other stuff has been going on too…

  • Hollywood Talk:

As many of you who follow me on facebook or twitter already know, this happened:


(Click the headline to read the article itself.)

That article is pretty impressive, not just because we didn’t make a press release, but because almost 90% of it is true. (Not the part about book 3, unfortunately.) That means that despite my plans to have a relaxing ComicCon where I caught up with some of my friends, most of my time in San Diego was spent meeting with fancy Hollywood people.

I didn’t know what to expect walking into those meetings, but I have to say, it was a surprisingly non-excruciating experience.

After the convention I came home for a couple days, then I headed out to LA to talk some more.

And honestly? That’s all I can say about that right now.

I might write a blog in a while talking about the extreme trepidation I feel about entering into this sort of arrangement, or the worry I feel about trying to adapt my books into alternate media. But right now, I just don’t have the time.

If you’re *really* interested, you can hear me talk about it at some length in the weekly podcast I’m doing with Max Temkin. I’ve spoken about it there at some length. Probably in more detail and with more caffeine involved than is entirely wise.

  • A brief adventure to Vidcon:

I was planning to fly back home on Thursday, but since I was already in LA, I decided to take an extra day or two and stop by Vidcon.

This was partly because I’m helping plan a book-centered convention with Hank Green, (Nerdcon, for those of you who don’t already know.) And I knew seeing Vidcon would help me be a better collaborator with his team.

But mostly I went because Vi Hart was there. And she is one of my favorite people.


(Actual footage.)

I also got to meet Hank and John Green in person for the first time, rather than e-mail meetings, which are rather thin, ephemeral things which preclude handshakes and hugs. (I don’t have any pictures of those meetings, because I never think of doing that sort of thing at the time.)

I also got to meet Henry Reich (from minute physics) and Jackson Bird, and had some lovely talk. I saw Freddy Wong, too. But didn’t approach him, because I was trying to play it cool.

It was an interesting convention, unlike any other con I’ve been to so far. And it’s made me even more excited about the upcoming Nerdcon….

  • Non-Gencon events in Indianapolis

I’m heading out to Indianapolis primarily because of Gencon. But for those of you who don’t go to conventions (or who couldn’t get a badge) I have a few events you can come to on Friday.

Friday, July 31

11am-12:30pm: A discussion of fantasy literature with PhD candidate Beth Avila.

Geek Chic at Gallery 42
42 E Washington St
Indianapolis, IN 46204

This is going to be a little bit outside of my normal realm of panel. This time, Geek Chic brought in a person with an actual literature degree to banter with me. I’m intrigued by this one, and if you are too you can grab a completely free ticket right here.

You don’t even need a GenCon badge for this, this is a great place to come check me out while I talk with someone about fantasy literature.

7:00 pm Concert Against Humanity

Murat Theatre at Old National Centre
502 North New Jersey Street
Indianapolis, Indiana 46204

This is a cool show that the folks from Cards Against Humanity are putting on. Performers include Kumail Nanjiani, Paul and Storm, Cameron Esposito, The Doubleclicks, Molly Lewis, Patrick Rothfuss, and John Scalzi.

You have to buy a ticket. But they’re handing out swag bags that have a bunch of games and goodies worth over a hundred bucks.

And if that weren’t enough by itself: here’s a code that will give you twenty bucks off your ticket. “indywelcomesall”

You can Buy tickets here.

  • GenCon:

This year, Worldbuilders will be all over Gencon. We’re going to have a booth by the Writer’s Symposium track of paneling. And a second booth we’re sharing with our longtime friends Badali Jewelry at #663 in the expo hall where we will be selling all manner of things.

Since we’re doing more than our average number of events at this year’s convention, we’ve got the fabulous Thera helping us coordinate volunteers for these booths.

Hey friends! There’s still space to volunteer for @PatrickRothfuss and @Worldbuilders_ during GenCon! If you’re interested let me know!

— Thera! 2016 (@Therajill) July 22, 2015

(From what I understand, we especially need people on Thursday)

If you’re interested in hanging out with the Worldbuilders team and lending a hand, drop her a line on twitter. And you can help us show off the cool things we’re going to have at our booth.

What kind of cool things? Well it’s funny you should ask….


Yup. That’s right. It’s a Draccus. Brought to you by the fine folks a Iello games, the people who make King of Tokyo.

When I met the folks from iello at GenCon two years ago, it turned out we had some mutual admiration going on. They loved my books, and I loved their games. I recommend King of Tokyo for anyone. It’s easy to learn, fun to play, and allows for a lot of trash talk, which I’m particularly good at.

So we’ve been working on creating a Draccus creature with them to release as a special promotion, with all the proceeds of the sale going to Worldbuilders.


The first time I’ll get to see our awesome Draccus is at GenCon. We’re going to limit how many are available each day. That way everyone has a chance to get them, even if you only have a day pass for Sunday. (And yes, if we have any left over, we’ll be putting them up in the Tinker’s Packs.)

What’s more, I’ve got two signings at the Worldbuilders booth (see the full schedule below for details).

If you want to come to one of my signings at the booth, there will be time tickets available there anytime before the signing, so you won’t have to wait in a long line. Just be sure to pick one up before the signing, because you have to have one to get your stuff signed.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Here’s all of the places I’ll be, and a few I won’t that I think you should check out anyway.

  • Thursday, July 30

If you’re at the con on Thursday, we’re going to be giving away a chance to play True Dungeon with me, Max Temkin, Sam Sykes, and Delilah S. Dawson. It’ll be from 2:30-5 Thursday afternoon.

Lycan's Afoot - Room 6 - Pat Rothfuss Run

(We had a great time playing last time, as you can see…)

If you want a chance of winning the ticket, you need to come by the Worldbuilders booth (#663) before noon, fill out a slip with your name and phone number, and put it into the hat. We’ll select one at random at 12:01, then call the winner and coordinate with them to come to the game.

If we don’t hear from you by 1pm we’ll call someone else, so be sure to answer your phone…

12pm-1pm: Second Stage Writing Career – What to Expect. Room 244

6pm-8pm: An Evening with Patrick Rothfuss. Westin hotel, Capitol III

The bad news is, this event is out of tickets. We filled the biggest room we could get to capacity, so if you don’t already have a ticket, you probably won’t be able to go.

That said, there’s another event going on at the same time that I think you might be interested in…

6pm-8pm: Storium Live with Chuck Wendig, Sam Sykes, Delilah S. Dawson, and Stephen Blackmoore. Room 245.

This is going to be a cool event. Storium is a collaborative story writing game, and we’ve got cool authors signed up to play a game live for you guys.

Additionally, this is a fundraiser for Worldbuilders. There’s a $4 admission fee, which goes to Worldbuilders, and once you’re in you can influence the story. Want to FORCE Sam Sykes to talk about Wols? Donate and make him change the story.

Yeah. You have the opportunity to screw around with people while also making the world a better place. It’s a win-win.

Tickets are still available here, and the more people who show up, the more fun it’s going to be.

  • Friday, July 31

11am-12:30pm: A discussion of fantasy literature with PhD candidate Beth Avila.

Geek Chic at Gallery 42
42 E Washington St
Indianapolis, IN 46204

1pm-2pm: Signing at the Worldbuilders Booth, #663

7pm Concert Against Humanity

Murat Theatre at Old National Centre
502 North New Jersey Street
Indianapolis, Indiana 46204
Buy tickets here

This is going to be a pretty sweet event. It’ll be me and some of my favorite folks putting on a show. If you don’t have a badge for GenCon, this might be the coolest way to find me.

  • Saturday, August 1

11am-12pm: What Makes a Character a Hero? Room 245

4pm-5pm: Signing at the Worldbuilders Booth, #663

6pm-7pm: Writing the Other. Room 245

  • Sunday, August 2

12pm-1pm: Writer’s Craft: Satisfying Conclusions. Room 242

Other than that, I’ll be around the convention, goofing around and playing games. The Worldbuilders Team will be around too, so be sure to stop by and visit them at the booth if you get the chance. We’ve got some convention-only specials that are worth checking out.

Be seeing some of you soon…


Posted in conventions, gaming, movie talk | By Pat45 Responses

Podcasts, Musings, and the Importance of Names

So a while back, I was lucky enough to get to meet Max Temkin.

Odds are, even if you don’t know his name, you know his work. He’s one of the driving forces behind Cards Against Humanity.

A couple months back, he asked if I’d like to do a podcast with him, where we pretty much just talked about whatever we felt like at the moment. I said yes because I enjoy every conversation we have, and an excuse to have a new one every week is too good to pass up.

And if other folks want to listen to it… well… I’m fine with that, too.

So we did it.

The first episode of that podcast is up here:

[Edit: Hey folks, Amanda here! The podcast is up on iTunes now, so you can subscribe to that here.]

Those of you who are capable of moving your eyes over text and decoding it may notice that the podcast is called Untitled Rothfuss.

This is partly because we don’t know what exactly this podcast is going to turn into. (If anything) Max and I are going to talk about things that interest us in the moment. We don’t have a theme, a narrative arc, an agenda, etc.

And it’s partly because I’m a little obsessive about names. It took me a month to name my first son (who y’all know as Oot). It took me two months to name my second boy (codename: Cutie.)

When I put a name on something, I don’t just want a good name. I don’t even want a great name. I want the Perfect name….

I asked the Worldbuilders Team if they had any ideas, and they were pretty useless (but hilarious):

  • Maximum Patitude
  • We both have three letter names
  • We’re Not Wearing Pants
  • Maxpat
  • Patmax
  • Pat to the Max
  • Pat and Max: The Musical
  • Grammatically Speaking
  • Procrastinators Inc.
  • Not Your Grandmother’s Podcast
  • Your Grandmother’s Podcast
  • Welcome to Valenight Eveningtown
  • Duskparty with Pat & Max
  • Rage Quit with Pat & Max
  • No Regard for Silence
  • Amanda Said We Can’t Use This Title.
  • Phteven, with a PH
  • Once Upon a Podcast
  • Some Regrets

The terrible thing is that most of those suggestions are actually better than the ones that Max and I came up with on our own. Those include:

  • Two White Guys Talking
  • Literally Literally
  • Destroying Joy
  • Talking about Stuff
  • The End is Nigh
  • The Non-Eponymous Podcast

Okay. I’ll admit I’m a little proud of “Non-Eponymous” because it’s really fun to say.

Anyway, I’ve come to y’all for suggestions for names before, like when I did Storyboard. I’m proud of that name.

So. Here’s a link to our first episode.

What do you think we should call it?


Posted in naming, podcasts | By Pat385 Responses

Invisible Interview Questions….

I do a lot of interviews. I used to post up links to them here in the blog. Though lately most of them end up getting posted on facebook or twitter.

The thing is, what you guys end up seeing is the final version of the interviews. The pretty finished versions that have been tidied up. Edited. Expurgated.

For example, when I’m doing interviews, a lot of time, people ask questions like:

Them: If you’d never been published, what do you think you would be?

Me: An unpublished author.

Them: [Laughing.] I’m sorry, what I mean is, if you weren’t a writer, what other job do you think you’d be doing now. What are you suited to do?

Me: Oh. In that case, I think I’d be a hobo.

Them: What we’re looking for is something more along the lines of your dream job.

Me: Still hobo.

Them: [Long pause] I think being a hobo is actually the opposite of a job.

Me: [Thoughtfully] That’s a good point. It’s more of a calling, isn’t it?

Them: Yes?

Me: What you’re asking is if I wasn’t a writer, what would my perfect career be?

Them: Yes. [Obvious relief.] That’s it exactly. What’s your dream job?

Me: Batman.

The moral of the story is this: I am a pain in the ass to interview.

In related news, here’s a link to a recent interview I did with the A.V. Club. For those of you who haven’t seen it.



Posted in Interviews | By Pat40 Responses

A Blog of Three Parts

Okay folks, we’re a little more than halfway through our summer fundraiser, and I’m pleasantly surprised at how well things have been going.

Last year we raised 25,000 dollars in the first day. This year, we raised that in under six hours.

As I write this, we stand at 112,000 dollars, and I’m hoping we have a strong finish in the next four days. I’d *really* like to beat last year’s total of $206K.

Today I’ve got three things to show you….

  • Show off a few new items we’ve added.
  • Bring a few things to your attention you might have missed in the excitement.
  • Draw your attention to our FAQ.

Let’s start with the last of these, shall we?

If you have questions, please look in the FAQ. Please? Want to know about ordering multiple items? It’s there. International shipping? There. T-shirt Sizing? Yup. You guessed it, it’s in the FAQ.

If you look there and don’t see the answer to your question. Please don’t hesitate to ask in the comments of the blog or over on the IndiGoGo itself. We’re keeping a close eye on both places.

Part The Second: New Items.

  • An Eolian Bar Hoodie


People have been asking us to make a hoodie for years, but we’ve been reluctant because hoodies tend to be expensive to produce.

But this seemed like the perfect time to test the waters, so we’re going to make one based on the Eolian Bar design, which has been our best selling t-shirt for years.

These are $55 and that includes shipping. They’re a little pricier than I’d like, but that’s because here at Worldbuilders, we don’t want to sell you something that was made by 8-year old kids in a sweatshop in China. That goes against the better world we’re trying to create. These hoodies are made here in the US, but that means they cost a little more.

Fair warning. If you want a hoodie, you should probably order it before the end of the fundraiser. Like I said, these are a bit of an experiment, they’re expensive to make, and really bulky to store. I don’t know if we’re going to stock them in the Tinker’s Packs after we’re done.

  • Signed Karen Hallion Denna Canvas


In last year’s calendar, Karen Hallion did a great job of this Kingkiller mashup that offers a theory about why Kvothe has so much trouble meeting up with Denna.

We liked it so much that we got 150 of them printed up, not as posters, but as canvas stretched over a wooden frame. These aren’t posters, they’re much nicer and sturdier than that.

We gave some to Project for Awesome last year, and they quickly sold out. Rather than horde them, we’re putting the rest up in the IndiGoGo. They’re numbered and signed by both Karen Hallion and Myself.

As I write this, there’s only 87 of them left. Once they’re gone, they’re gone.

  • Multi-Color Shirts


 (Click to Embiggen)

Traditionally, we print our black t-shirts. Aside from being the traditional geek t-shirt color, black is pretty universal.

That said, many of you have made passionate pleas for non-black shirts. So we’re listening. We’ve decided to take another risk and try an experiment.

For three of our shirts (shown above) we’re going to be offering you choices for different colors (also above). When we send out our post-survey fundraiser, you’ll get to pick which styles, sizes, and colors you like best.

We picked these colors because they worked best with the designs, so while they’re still dark, you’ll have some variety this way. And the option to choose.

Fair Warning: After the fundraiser is over, we aren’t going to stock multiple colors in our online store.

Why? Because it means we would effectively have to stock 144 different items (3 shirts x 2 styles x 6 sizes x 4 four colors = 144). It would be pure madness.

When these shirts end up in the Tinker’s Packs after the fundraiser, we’re only going to carry whatever the most-voted-for color is. The odds say that color will be black. So if you want a non-black version of one of these shirts, the fundraiser is probably going to be the only place to get it

(Also, remember. You have the option to buy a shirt 3-pack as a 60 dollar perk. You save 15 bucks that way.)

  • Unfettered, in a few forms…

Unfettered combo

If you don’t know: This anthology was put together by Shawn Speakman. Shawn asked a bunch of his author friends if they’d be willing to donate a story to help him publish a book to help pay for his cancer treatments. I was happy to help. Because seriously. Fuck cancer.

Unfettered contains my first ever published short story: How Old Holly Came to Be.

Because Shawn published these books through a small press, they’re very rare. There were only 5000 of them printed. But we have 100 of them to put into the fundraiser. We’re just about the only place you can find them.

For you collectors out there: We *also* have numbered editions, signed by *all* the authors. Terry Brooks, Naomi Novik, Brandon Sanderson, RA Salvatore, Tad Williams, Jacqueline Carey, Daniel Abraham, Peter V. Brett, Robert VS Redick, Peter Orullian, Todd Lockwood, Carrie Vaughn, Blake Charlton, Kevin Hearne, Mark Lawrence, David Anthony Durham, Jennifer Bosworth, Lev Grossman, Michael J. Sullivan… and me.


(Signed by 22 of the biggest names in fantasy.)

They only made 500 of these. They have a different cover. A color insert, and a slipcase to keep the book safe. They’ve been sold out for ages. But we have a few.

But wait, there’s more.

Shawn is putting together another anthology: Unbound. If you buy this perk, you’ll get both fancy slipcased books, signed by all contributors, with matching numbers.

What’s more, if you order this perk, you get first dibs on the same number when the next anthology after Unbound comes out. (We’ve worked that out with Shawn) So you can have the whole trilogy with a set of matching numbers.

  • The Adventures of the Princess and Mr. Whiffle.


For those of you who don’t know. Yeah. I did a picture book.

It’s been out for a while, but a lot of folks don’t know about it. It’s kinda… dark.

People have been e-mailing us, saying they’d like to buy copies, but they’d *also* want the geeky joy of being a part of the Geeks Doing Good fundraiser. So we’re throwing it in as a perk for those of you who haven’t heard of it. Or for those of you who have been waiting for an excuse to grab a copy.

The book will ship with the promotional gold-foil: “This shit is not for kids” sticker.

Part Two: Things you May have Missed.

  • Early Look at a new Jim Butcher Book

Aeronaut's Windlass

I pulled some strings with the folks at Penguin books, and they sent us copies of the promotional sampler for Jim Butcher’s new book. We’re going to be putting one into every book bundle. So you’ll get an early look at the book. (We’re including a few other samplers, too.)

  • Geek-A-Week Cards

We mentioned these before, but we haven’t done a good job of showing off the art yet.


(You pretty much need to embiggen this)

These Geek-aWeek decks are really cool, and I hope you guys take the time to check them out. Each card has a cool geeky celebrity featured, doing something awesome. Above are some highlights from Season 1, and below are some highlights from Season 5.


(I’m in there, too. As you can see.)

The backs of the cards contain incriminating information about the geeks.

They aren’t just cool collectables. You can also play a game with them (Designed by Mike Selinker.) Even better, I just discovered today, that these cards are *great* when you’re doing tabletop rollplaying. Need an NPC? Pick one out of the deck. Suddenly Amanda Palmer is the Shady Fence you’re selling stolen jewelry to. Or Felicia day is the head of the Bandits that jump you in the forest.

Forshadowing: You might see a video featuring me doing something like this very soon.

  • Auri’s Brazen Gear

Auri Gear

Badali did such a good job on these. And since it’s the Year of the Gear, we decided to put them up into the fundraiser where you could buy them. Plus, they come with both a chain and a leather cord, so you can choose for yourself when it arrives.

  • JoCoCruise 2016

JCC 2016

A lot of people have been asking, so I thought I’d explain a couple of things about the cruise.

First of all, we aren’t covering your travel TO the cruise. You’ll still need to get down there yourself.

That said, the cruise includes everything during your trip. That means:

  • All your meals for 7 days. (Including room service.)
  • A *very* nice D3 balcony cabin.
  • Access to all exclusive JCC2016 entertainment and events.
  • Panels, concerts, cocktail hours, special gaming events….
  • Access to the 24/7 gaming room sponsored by Steve Jackson games.
  • *Guaranteed* seating at all the main performance events.

Still not enough? Jonathan Coulton, Jean Grae, Paul F. Tompkins, and Imogen Heap are featured performers. Plus notable geeks like Wil Wheaton, Molly Lewis, John Scalzi, John Hodgman, and N.K. Jemisin are all there doing panels, hanging out, and just generally being awesome.

I’ll be there too. Along with a few of the Worldbuilders crew. I’ll be doing some panels on writing….

Think about it for a second. Just think about going. Wouldn’t that be an amazing vacation? A great second honeymoon? Best graduation present ever?

The total cash value of the cabin is $3,991. Given that, I don’t see how you can *not* seriously consider buying the $5 perk that gives you a chance. Or you can buy 5 chances for $25.

Still not convinced? I’ll bring along my prototype Tak set and we’ll play a game. A beautiful game.

  • Auri Soap


(I’m, seriously, ridiculously excited about this.)

We got a picture of the first test run of Auri’s perfect soap from Black Phoenix. It looks lovely, and I can’t wait to get my hands on some. I want to smell it.

Keep in mind that this isn’t necessarily what the finished product will look like, but it’s a good start.

Those of you who pay close attention to the fine details of things (which, now that I think of it, is probably most of you) doubtless noticed that in the initial video we talked about doing a candle too.

The problem is, the candle needs to be made from the right ingredients. It needs to have beeswax and bayberry. (Which is what you get from laurel) What’s more, it needs to be a free-standing candle. Not one of those candles-in-a-jar. Because if it wasn’t like that, it wouldn’t be Auri’s candle.

The problem is, very few people make candles like that these days. Because the ingredients are expensive. And candles in jars are easier to make and safer to use. As a result, we’re putting that project on hold for now. I don’t want to make the candle for you unless I can be sure it’s perfect. Auri simply would not approve.

  • Two (2) Mayfair Game Bundles

games bundles2

Some of you may remember when the Worldbuilders Team unloaded 18 pallets of Mayfair Games off of a truck last winter (if you don’t, you should really watch the video, because Maria is adorable in it).

Since we had so many games, we’ve put them together into bundles for people. There’s a smaller, slightly cheaper one at $40, with a retail value of over $120. It has a few of the easier to pick up games, though they’re still wonderfully fun.

It was, of course, our duty to play the games, you see. To be sure that they were fun. Quality control, and all of that.

There’s also a larger bundle for $55 that retails for over $220. It’s some of the bigger and more intensive games.

Note: The games in the bundles don’t overlap at all. That means if you buy both of them, you won’t get any duplicate games.

*     *     *

Lastly: For those of you who are holding out, please be aware that we won’t be adding anything new to the fundraiser after today (Friday).

Fair Warning: Some of the final items we’re adding are limited in number, so keep an eye out for the update that will probably get sent out in the afternoon.

Have a good weekend, folks. Thanks for supporting Worldbuilders. Thanks for spreading the word, and thanks for making the world a better place.

Here’s a final link to the fundraiser if you want it.


Posted in Geeks Doing Good, Worldbuilders | By Pat54 Responses
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