Category Archives: conventions

NerdCon: Why Stories Matter

So let me tell you a story.

Years ago, I met someone named Hank Green in an accidental way through social media. I’d watched a couple of his videos and liked them. He’d read my book and enjoyed it. He offered to help out with my charity. I offered to help out with his.

I didn’t know him very well, but he struck me as a cool person who was working to make the world a better place. Best of all, he had a fine-tuned sense of the ridiculous, as shown in the Stretch Goal he did for Worldbuilders, where he shot a video of himself seducing a tree.

When I saw that, I knew he was my kind of crazy.

A couple months after we’d met, Hank dropped me an e-mail. It went kinda like this.

Hey Pat,

I do a thing called Vidcon, and I was wondering if there’s a convention where authors and people who love books would get together and… y’know… talk about books and stuff.

If there isn’t, there really should be. And I’d like to make it happen.

You seem to know the book world and a lot of book-type people. What do you think?


Now, before I go any further, I need to point out that I’m paraphrasing a lot here. This was about two years ago, and I can easily forget what I had for breakfast any given day.

That said, I remember the first thing that came to mind, reading this e-mail. I thought, “Wow. That’s adorable.”

I’m not proud of that thought, but it’s what popped into my head. The second thing was, “Science fiction fandom is where the whole convention thing started. We’ve been doing conventions for, like, 50 years. There’s a ton of book-type conventions.”

My third thought was, “I should give him a call. Planning a convention is a nightmare. He doesn’t want to go down that rabbit hole.”

Did I mention that I’d only known Hank for a little bit at that point? And that sometimes I can be unutterably dim? My only real excuse is that my youngest boy had been born just a couple weeks before that, so I wasn’t really performing at optimum efficiency.

Luckily, my assistant Amanda e-mailed me before I could make a total ass of myself.

He’s serious,” Amanda told me. “He does this sort of thing all the time. He’s good at it.

Amanda explained that Hank wasn’t just a guy that sometimes made videos and did a charity thing. She explained about the Nerdfighters. She explained to me that Hank was one of the people who had founded Vidcon.

“What’s a Vidcon?” I asked, dimly remembering the term from somewhere in my distant past.

It’s a convention,” Amanda said. “For people who make videos on YouTube. Hank mentioned it in the e-mail he sent, remember?

“No,” I said.

*     *     *

CKuzM1VUEAA2XLN(Since then, I’ve been to Vidcon. And a good time was had by all.)

Thanks to Amanda, my vast ignorance wasn’t the stumbling block it might have been. I called Hank and told him that there were bookish conventions, many of them quite well-established (Worldcon has been happening since 1939, for example.)

But I also talked about other conventions that I’d been to over the last several years. About how the ones that felt the most electric and alive were the newer cons. The comic-cons and Game cons like PAX. While I loved meeting up with other authors and readers, a lot of the book-centered conventions felt kinda…. well… stuffy by comparison.

Hank talked about building community, about making a place where we could celebrate stories, about making a place where everyone would feel welcome.

I talked about a lot of the people I’d come to know over the years, authors who were smart and funny and full of enthusiasm. People who were good on panels.

Hank talked about bringing people in who were performers. Musicians and storytellers. Podcasters. Actors. He talked about doing programming that was more dynamic. He talked about people singing and playing games and having fun.

At first I was just chatting with Hank about general ideas. What the convention could be. What it shouldn’t be. This was easy for me, as I’ve probably hit more than a hundred conventions in recent years. Then I recommended some authors who were funny and smart and articulate. Then I was contacting the authors to see if they were interested, and to sell them on the idea of the convention.

Before I knew it I was helping plan the programming and enjoying the hell out of myself.

*     *     *

Fast forward to now. Nerd Con: Stories is happening in just a month or so. It’s October 9-10th in Minneapolis.


I’m really ridiculously excited about this convention.

It’s going to be different than any convention I’ve ever been to, and I can say that with some authority because I’ve been helping plan it. I’ve invited some of my favorite people to attend, and helped put together some of the best programming I’ve ever seen.

It’s going to be fun, folks. There will be singing and signing. There will be bad poetry and puppets. We will talk about the shape of stories. I will have a serious geek out because the folks from Nightvale are going to be there….


Cecil Baldwin, Jeffrey Cranor, Joseph Fink, and many others will be there, speaking on panels and playing games like, “Guess what’s in my mouth” on stage.


(Just a few of the cool people we have coming to the convention.)

A week ago, Amanda and I went out to Minneapolis with the rest of the team to check out the convention center, and honestly? I was stunned.


I’ve been to a lot of conventions where the events spaces are composed pretty much entirely of a bunch of stacking chairs in hotel conference rooms. And while that isn’t necessarily bad. This… well… it’s something completely different. It’s beautiful there.

Mpls Convention Center 4

Nice theater seating, comfortable chairs, good acoustics….

We’ll be talking about why stories matter. And we’ll be talking about the craft of writing. I’ll be leading an improvisational story game called The Adventures of Baron Von Munchhausen, and leading a team as Captain in a game of Artemis as well.

There’s going to be an open mic session every night. There will be book signings and a dealer’s room for you to go buy nerdy goodness in. The Worldbuilders Team will be there. Harry and the Potters will be there. Paul & Storm will be there….

Author crop2

(A lot of people will be there….)

Here’s the deal: It’s only a month away, and the con is selling out pretty quickly. What’s more, the block of rooms we have reserved at the nearby hotel is going to be gone pretty soon. So if you’d like to come (or if you want to get a cheap room for your stay) you’ll need to decide soon.

And you want to come. Trust me on this. Imagine what it would be like getting to go to the very first Worldcon back in the day. The first PAX. The first Comic-Con.

If you want to be at the first NerdCon, you can register here.

I hope to see many of you there….


Also posted in cool things, geeking out, signing books | By Pat41 Responses

Events in Seattle – PAX Prime 2015

Heya guys, Amanda here!

Pat is out in Seattle for PAX Prime, and he asked me to post up his schedule for the con so you could all find his glorious beard wherever its available.

Man, that was way creepier than I meant it to be.

For those of you not attending the con, on Thursday the 27th Pat is doing a reading and signing event with the University Bookstore, who are particularly good at keeping him caffeinated.

09032012_Kathy Ann Bugajsky_Patrick Rothfuss Signing_3 Coffees

(Three different coffees, one crazy signing…)

This event won’t be at the bookstore, but over at the University Temple right across the street. That way there will be room for everyone who might want to show up. This is the same place they hosted him when he did the Slow Regard of Silent Things tour, and that was a great event.

7:00 pm: Reading, Q&A, and Signing
University Temple United Methodist Church
1415 NE 43rd St.
Seattle, WA 98105
Facebook Event

There’s no ticket price, but they are accepting $5 donations to Worldbuilders from everyone who is willing to pay it, which is really awesome of them.

On to the schedule for the con…

  • Thursday, August 27

His first event is actually at PAX Dev, and it sounds pretty cool.

2:15pm-3:15pm: Pat and Mike Selinker talk about Narrative in Games. Westin Grand Ballroom 3

If you play board games and don’t know who Mike Selinker is, you probably actually do. He’s the game designer behind a lot of the greats, like Axis and Allies, Betrayal at House on the Hill, and my current personal favorite, The Pathfinder Adventure Card Game. So you know he knows his stuff.

  • Friday, August 28

If you want to pick up some stuff from The Tinker’s Packs while you’re at PAX, the folks at Cards Against Humanity will have some of it, including the Pinny Arcade Talent Pipes, copies of The Adventures of the Princess and Mr. Whiffle, decks of Name of the Wind Playing Cards, and Pairs Decks.

PAX Swag

You can check them out and buy them at the ACT Theater, along with lots of other stuff Cards Against Humanity is doing in there…

2pm-4pm: Signing in the Autograph Area in the Westin

8:30pm: D&D Live with Acquisitions Inc. – Darkmagic vs. Do’Urden. Main Theater


Pat is once again playing Viari in the Acquisitions Inc campaign. Hopefully fewer chandeliers will be swung upon, but you really never know with Pat.

  • Saturday, August 29

3:30-4:30pm: An Afternoon with Patrick Rothfuss, Sasquatch Theater (Sheraton AB)

This is always a good time. Pat tends to tell crazy stories, read a bit, and generally goof off with the audience for an hour. If you want the true Rothfuss Experience ™, this is a great panel to go to.

5pm-7pm: Signing in the Autograph Area in the Westin

  • Sunday, August 30

2pm-3pm: Untitled Rothfuss:  The Live Conclusion of Max Temkin and Patrick Rothfuss’ Podcast, Sasquatch Theater (Sheraton AB)

If you haven’t been listening to Pat and Max’s podcast, you still have time to catch up. I listen every week. It started out as a way to monitor the stuff Pat was publicly announcing (like his willingness to sell his movie rights to Joss Whedon), and I ended up really enjoying it in the process.

Don’t tell Pat.

* * *

So that’s the plan, folks. If you want to catch Pat, these are the best places to do it. Even if the con isn’t your thing, you can still go to the signing event at the University Temple.

Thanks for letting me hijack the blog, guys. I promise not to go mad with power. Yet.


Also posted in panels | By Amanda14 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…


Also posted in gaming, movie talk | By Pat45 Responses

San Diego Comic Con

Hey everybody, Amanda here! Pat’s out at San Diego Comic Con, running around like a mad man. He’s had a lot of stuff to do out there, and he asked me to post up his schedule here, because if we wait for him to have time, the convention will be over.

When in doubt, you’ll probably find Pat hanging out at the Horton Grand Hotel with the folks from Geek Chic, who are set up a seriously cool off-site hangout they’re calling Geek Chic XP.

It’s like a sanctuary from the usual craziness that is SDCC. There’s great food and drinks, and they’ll all be available to be delivered to you while you game on Geek Chic’s epic gaming tables.


It’s going to be a pretty cool place to be.

Pat will be spending lots of his time there, and you don’t need a badge to get in. Be sure to check out their website for details.

Here’s what’s on the schedule otherwise:

  • Fri, July 10

1pm-2pm: Signing at Badali’s Booth, #532

  • Sat, July 11

12pm: Sci-fi vs Fantasy Family Feud, Room: 7AB

1:30-2:30pm Signing, Table AA09

7-9pm: Meet & Greet at Geek Chic XP

Grand Horton Hotel
311 Island Avenue,
San Diego CA 92101

This is two hours (minimum) where Pat will be at Geek Chic XP, hanging out and gaming with whoever shows up, and eating some of the awesome food, including the Eolian Burger they’ve got on the menu…

eolian burger

It’s gonna be a casual, fun environment that isn’t usually available at cons like this, so if it sounds cool to you, you should definitely check it out.

  • Sun, July 12

12pm-1pm: Signing, Table AA18

* * *

So there you have it. If you have a badge, there are signings and panels you can attend. Even if you don’t, there’s fun to be had elsewhere, especially at Geek Chic XP. Be sure to swing by if you’ve got the chance, and tell Pat hi from me if you see him…

Also posted in appearances, Geek Chic | By Amanda19 Responses

C2E2, Collectibles, and Charity

Last year I gave C2E2 a try and was kinda surprised how much I liked it. As conventions go, it’s a nice mix of fandoms, with a lot of different stuff going on. It’s busy, but nowhere near as crowded as San Diego or New York Comic Cons.

Plus, it’s in Chicago, so I can pretty much throw a rock and hit it. The more I travel, the less I enjoy traveling. So that’s a big factor for me…

So I’ve decided to head back there again this year. I’ll be doing panels, signing books, and just generally nosing around and enjoying myself. I even get to interview Jim Butcher (details on that below) so I’m thinking I’m going to enjoy this year’s convention even more than I did last year.

At this particular convention, I’m also trying out something new (also below, but not as far).

Something New:

When I go to conventions, I always make a point of doing a signing or two. But this last year or so, the lines for my signings have been *really* long. As a result, they have to cap the lines, which means that after X number of people are lined up, they just won’t let any more people in.

So I try to sign books faster, but that means I can’t spend as much time talking with people as I’d like. And even then people have to stand in line for a long time, and the lines *still* get capped, and some folks can’t get their books signed.

Fast forward to about a month ago, I was contacted by the folks at Gemr. They’re a new company that’s starting up a website that’s…. well… it’s kinda like Goodreads, but for collectibles instead of books. Baseball cards, action figures, rare books…

Pretty much whatever you collect, you can use their service for it. You can show off your stuff, catalog your collections, have folks comment on your items, or even sell your stuff if you’re interested….

Anyway, they contacted me, and were looking to get the word out to people about their new website. They offered to donate money to Worldbuilders if we could help them spread the word.

So we wandered over to their site and mucked around a little. One of the more rare and limited things we’ve ever had was the Cealdish Currency from Shire Post Mint.

Master Set - Blog

(True-Ringing Cealdish Coin….)

So we decided to try it out. We created a profile and entered all the info about the coins: how many there were, what they were made of, all of the relevant information, and then uploaded all of that info into the website.

Okay. I’ll be honest here. Amanda did it all. I was busy doing other things, like writing books.

The good news was that Amanda said it was delightfully easy, and now all the information about the Cealdish currency is out in the world for those of you who are curious about that sort of thing.

Since their site seems pretty cool, and because I like doing stuff for charity, here’s what we’re doing with Gemr:

  • First: For every person who signs up for an account USING THIS LINK, Gemr will donate $3 to Worldbuiders.

This means, effectively, that if you go in and create an account on their site, *you* are donating three bucks to Worldbuilders.

That means if 100 of you create accounts, it’s enough money for Heifer International to provide a whole community with clean water. If 500 of you create accounts, it’s enough for Worldbuilders to give struggling families trees that will prevent soil erosion while producing fruits and nuts. If 1000 of you create accounts, we can give 100 families a flock of baby chicks, as well as the training, tools, and materials to house and care for the chickens so they can eat and sell eggs and raise *more* chickens.

And let’s be honest here, I know a *lot* more than 1000 of you read this blog….

But you need to make sure you USE THIS LINK so they know we sent you.

  • Second: I’m going to be doing three extra signings at the Gemr Booth at C2E2.

This will give me more time to sign books, take with folks pictures, and meet y’all at the convention. Which is a good thing.

What’s more, if you decide to sign up for their site while you’re in line at Gemr’s booth (#619) Worldbuilders will get credit for those sign-ups too….

The Gemr booth (#619) will have time slot tickets available for my signings there for anyone who wants them. That way you don’t have to waste a bunch of time standing in line, so make sure to swing by and pick one up.

Now, here’s my full schedule at C2E2:

Friday, April 24

1:00 PM-2:00 PM: Signing at the Gemr Booth, #619
2:45 PM-3:45 PM: Cinder Spires Panel (With Jim Butcher) Room S401
4:00 PM-6:00 PM: After Panel Signing with Jim Butcher, Table 18

Saturday, April 25

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM: Geek Geek Revolution, Room S403
1:00 PM-2:00 PM: Signing at the Gemr Booth, #619
3:00 PM-4:00 PM: Authors of Epic Fantasy, Room S402
4:15 PM-5:15PM: After Panel Signing, Table 18

11:00 PM-1:00 AM: Cards After Dark, 1917 N Elston Ave

The last of these is kind of a new thing, but I think it’s going to be cool.

It’s a ticketed event, since the venue has limited capacity, but the tickets are only $5, so if you want one, grab one over here.

Sunday, April 26

1:00 PM-2:00 PM: Signing at the Gemr Booth, #619
2:30 PM-4:30PM: Signing with Jim Butcher, Table 18

I’ll be seeing a lot of you soon, and thanks to Gemr you’ll have a much better chance of catching me if you’re in the area.

And don’t forget, if you sign up using our special link, Worldbuilders gets $3.

Later Space Cowboys….


Also posted in appearances, cool things, signing books, Worldbuilders | By Pat39 Responses

Goodbye London, hello Seattle, and an excuse to buy books.

So I’ve been traveling a lot lately.


(Witness the excellent Adem cosplay that happened in London.)

While that means I get to meet a lot of you in person, sign books, and make all manner of amusing tweets about my first time riding first class. It’s not exactly conducive to writing blog posts.


(A great Kvothe from Avilés in Spain.)

I’m back from Spain and London now, and PAX is right around the corner. After that, I’ll hopefully be able to catch up on a few posts I’ve been wanting to write for some time.

It occurred to me today that while I might not write a lot of blogs while I’m on the road, I tend to read more. And when I read, I tend to review the books on goodreads.

As you know if you’ve ever read my reviews, they’re mostly not reviews. They’re usually more of a little story about the book, mixed in with my rambling thoughts about storytelling, and my feelings about the book itself.

And no spoilers, of course. Because we’re civilized around these parts.

Once I stopped to think about it, I realized it was a little odd that I’d tell a story in a book review but I wouldn’t write about the experience on my own blog. So I figured I’d post the first part of a recent review up here today so you can see what I’m talking about.

*     *     *

I walked into the bookstore in a bit of a mood.

Wait, that’s my Midwestern nature talking. We tend to understate. The truth is I walked into the bookstore furious at the world. I can’t remember why. I am prone to dark moods, and when I’m in the middle of one, I tend to rumble through the world like an angry old-testament god.

I went directly to the Sci-Fi Fantasy section. That’s where I live for the most part. That’s where I go when the world gets to be too much for me.

I looked at the titles. I’d read about a quarter of them. I read a lot. But nothing looked particularly good. Nothing does when I’m in one of my moods.

A friendly bookseller walked over. “Can I help you find anything?” she asked.

“I want to read something good,” I said. “I’m tired of gritty depressing shit. I want a fun, light book that isn’t going to leave me wanting to put a gun in my mouth.”

I’m not hyperbolizing. That’s what I actually said. It wasn’t a nice thing to say, but I can be unpleasantly brusk at times.

The bookseller didn’t bat and eye. She pointed out a couple books, then asked how I felt about YA.

“I’ll read anything if it’s good,” I said.

Here’s the rest of the review if you’re interested.

*     *     *

In other news, I’ll be out in Seattle soon, making a nusiance of myself at PAX and PAX dev.

I’ve got a few scheduled events if you’re hoping to catch me there.

Thursday, August 28

5:15pm, PAX Dev, Stories of Game Design Panel, Grand III

Friday, August 29

Sometime after 6:30 I’ll be swinging by Gauntlet’s booth, which is in the South Lobby, to chat about the new game on their live stream, which will be up on PAX’s Twitch channel over here.

And I’ll be playing Gauntlet too. Of course.

8:30pm Late night at Benaroya Hall, featuring Triforce Quartet, The Doubleclicks, and Paul & Storm.- Benaroya Hall at 200 University St.

(I’m not performing at this, but I’m going to be doing a brief cameo appearance in the show. As well as perhaps heckling them good naturedly from backstage.)

Saturday, August 30

3:30-5:30, Signing at PAX, in the Paramount

Sunday, August 31

4-5, An Afternoon with Patrick Rothfuss - Main Theater (Benaroya Hall at 200 University St.)

I’ll be doing some Q&A, telling some stories, and reading various and sundry things.

This event will be streamed online, so if you’re near a computer around 4pm Pacific Time, you can see it over here, along with a bunch of other cool stuff that’ll be up throughout the con.

Monday, September 1

12:00 – 2:00, Signing at PAX, in the Paramount

I’ve got one signing event that isn’t at the convention. It’s on Monday night at a local indie bookstore.

7:00pm, Signing with The Oatmeal at Wit’s End Bookstore
1530 Grove St Suite A
Marysville, WA 98270
Call for Free Tickets: 360-386-8997
Facebook Event

Note that this is *just* a signing. I won’t be doing a reading and a Q&A as we won’t have the time or the space. But the Oatmeal will be there signing his books too, and you’ll be able to get copies of the Princess book as well.

*     *     *

In related news, we’re experimenting a bit by producing a Pinny Arcade pin. Our design is based off the talent pipes.

I don’t have a picture for you yet, but I’ll post one up here when I do.

We’ll be selling them at the Geek Chic booth because…. well…. Geek Chic is awesome.


(Even Oot knows that.)

As always, proceeds from this sort of thing go to support Worldbuilders.

If you’re interested in grabbing a pin, I’ll have some of them with me at the show. So you see me in the hall, you can offer me a trade for one. Or you can probably grab one for cash if you catch me at one of my signings.

Otherwise, you can hit the Geek Chic booth at SKY3. I’ll be lurking around there as well, lowering property values and engaging in general hooliganism.

Rest assured, if we have some pins left over after the convention, we’ll put them up in The Tinker’s Packs.

As some of you might remember from last year, PAX doesn’t have booksellers on site. That means if you’re going to want a copy of Name of the Wind or Wise Man’s Fear, you’ll have to bring your own.

Or… *Pat says in his best used car salesman voice* you can go around the corner to the Barnes and Noble that’s right next to the convention center, where they’ve agreed to stock a bunch of my books.

What’s more, when we called to see if they’d be willing to carry a bunch of extra copies of my books again, they once again offered to do it in conjunction with a Book Fair. So if people show up and buy any books with our Bookfair code (11423936), a portion of the proceeds will go to Worldbuilders.

And it’s not a tiny little piece of the money, either. B&N ends up cutting us a check for about 10% of all purchases made this way.

Just to reiterate: any books you buy with our Bookfair code (11423936) will raise money for Worldbuilders. The code is good from August 28th (today) to September 5th in stores.

Even better, the code works online too. So if you head over to Barnes and Noble’s online store and enter 11423936 during checkout from August 28th to September 10th (a full 5 days longer) a portion of proceeds will come to us from that sale, too.

So if you have some books you’ve been looking to pick up, this is a great chance to kill two birds with one stone…

See some of you soon….


Also posted in appearances, cosplay | By Pat23 Responses

My Far Wanderings: San Diego and Spain

So this week begins the pure madness of my convention season.

Amanda and I did the math a few days ago and realized that between now and mid-September, I’m only home for 15 days. And those days are not all in a row.

First on the docket is…

  • San Diego Comic Con

I’ve made a habit of SDCC for years now, but this year I’m trying something a little different.

Because I hate being away from my family for large swaths of time, Sarah, Oot, and Cutie Snoo are coming with me to the con.

Cutie - 8 weeks

(The shirt was a gift. Honestly.)

Because I don’t normally travel with my kids, I think this would be a good time to establish some ground rules. Okay?

1. Being off-duty.

One of the main reasons I go to conventions is to see/hang out with/interact with my readers. I like meeting you guys.

That said, one of the *other* reasons I like going to conventions has nothing to do with you. It’s simply that I like going I like going to conventions. I like wandering the dealer’s room, looking at stuff, hanging out with my friends, and just being a geek.

Does that mean that I resent it when someone comes up to me in the dealer’s hall and asks for a picture or an autograph? No. Not really.

But you have to realize that sometimes I’m in a hurry to get somewhere. Sometimes I’m tired. Sometimes I haven’t eaten all day. Sometimes I’m enjoying the only free time I have available all day. Sometimes I’m just trying to get to the bathroom and you’re the third person to stop me in the hallway.

That means that if I beg off, and say, “No, I’m sorry, not right now.” You have to respect that.

I’m not saying you have to be delighted. I get that you might *really* have your heart set of getting a picture with me and the nearby statue of Sailor Moon. But it could be I’m late to a panel. It could be I only have 25 minutes to eat some food before I’ve got an interview. It could just be that I’m really, really weary and not feeling very social at the moment.

Let me put it this way. While at many points in the convention I am absolutely all-the-way there just for you. At other times I’m not. And if you hit me in one of those *not* times, I’m well within my rights to politely decline your request.

To simplify, when I’m at a convention, I exist in two possible states:

On Duty – Signing stuff. Doing panels. Taking pictures. Playing games.

Off Duty But Approachable - With the understanding that I might not be up for anything right now.

But now we have a third option, too: With My Family

If you see me at the convention and I’m carrying a baby, or pushing a stroller, or sharing an ice cream cone with my son that means I’m With My Family. During these times you should probably consider me extra-off duty.

Can we exchange companionable nods with one other? Sure. Can you offer up a geek solidarity fist bump? Absolutely.

But asking me to pose for a picture, sign a book, or explain the best way to get an agent? Not so much.

2. Don’t touch my kids.

I know. My children are fucking adorable. It’s like their mutant power.

And I know that wanting to touch kids is a totally normal mammalian response.

And I also know that a lot of you feel a connection with me, and with my kids. You’ve seen pictures of them. You’ve read stories about Cutie on facebook and seen the #OotSays hashtag on Twitter.

But seriously. Don’t touch them. I don’t know you. We don’t want them getting convention plague. And more likely than not, a stranger coming up and pawing at them is just going to freak them out.

And you *really* don’t want to see my grizzly bear type protective dad instincts kick in. You really don’t. Really. You don’t want to spend comic con in the hospital, and I don’t need the bad press.

So. Consider this fair warning. Tell your friends.

*     *     *

  • My San Diego Comic Con Schedule

Thursday, July 24
4-5pm Putting the Epic in Epic Fantasy Room: 25ABC
With Robin Hobb, Joe Abercrombie, Raymond E. Feist, Django Wexler, Morgan Rhodes, Sam Sykes, Moderated by Brent Weeks

5:30-6:30pm Signing table, AA09

Friday, July 25
1:30-2:30pm Playing Gloom with Geek and Sundry

Saturday, July 26

1-3pm Signing at Badali’s booth – #532
4:15-5:15pm Rulers of the Realm Final, Room 6A
With Joe Abercrombie, Diana Gabaldon, Lev Grossman, George R.R. Martin, and moderated by Ali T. Kokmen.

Other booths where I tend to lurk:

  • Mysterious Galaxy: #1119
  • Penguin Booth: #1028
  • Badali: #532
  • Geek Chic: #4928
  • Thinkgeek: #3849
  • Karen Hallion: Artist’s Alley BB-11

If anything else comes up, I’ll probably just tweet about it.

  • Spain: Madrid and Aviles

After San Diego, I’ll be going straight to Spain.

First, I’ll be doing a live interview on Espacio Fundación Telefónica on Tuesday, July 29th.

The show starts at 19:00 (UTC+02) and it will also be broadcast on their podcast channel, so you can listen to it from anywhere. For more details, the podcast, and a chance to get tickets, visit their site at

Then, I’ll be headed to Aviles to Celsius 232. From what I’ve heard, it’s a really cool con. What’s more, it has no badges or entrance fees, so anyone who is in the area can come see me.

Thursday, July 31
1:15 PM – 2:00 PM Adventures of the Princess Panel. Carpa de Actividades.
Conducted by Jorge Ivan Argiz.
2:00 PM – 2:45 PM Signing in the Carpa de Actividades.

Friday, August 1
10 AM – 12 PM Signing in the Carpa de Actividades.
6:15 PM -7:30 PM The Works of Patrick Rothfuss. Casa de la Cultura.
Conducted by Diego Garcia Cruz.

Saturday, August 2
10 AM t – 12 PM Signing in the Carpa de Actividades
6:15 PM -7:30 PM Three Different Approaches to Fantasy. Casa de la Cultura.
With Brandon Sanderson and Joe Abercrombie. Conducted by Cristina Macia and Jorge Ivan Argiz in the Casa de la Cultura

Hope to see some of you soon….


Also posted in babies, Being a Curmudgeon, How to be a Worthwhile Human Being | By Pat90 Responses
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