Over the last couple years, I’ve developed several fairly large, persistent sources of guilt.
I’m not talking about normal guilt, like knowing I should really floss more. That I should do a better job separating out my recyclables.
That’s just low-grade background guilt. A faint misting of guilt. Even the constant feeling that I should be a more patient, understanding father is hardly more than a drizzle compared to the near bottomless wells of guilt I’ve discovered in the last several years.
For example, I have a backlog of more than two thousand unread pieces of digital fanmail at this point.
Worse, I have more than 200 pieces of actual print mail I haven’t managed to read or respond to yet. A year’s worth of letters from all over the world. Messages that people took the time to write down or type up, put in envelopes, address and mail to me. They are tangible acts of love and affection, and I haven’t been able to find the time to sit down, read, and respond to them.
Something always seems to be eating up my time instead….
But the thing I feel guiltiest about from these last few years, the worst of my broken promises, is the photo contest. Hundreds of you participated. Thousands of pictures were sent in….
And now, three years later, I still haven’t managed to finish posting up the pictures, let alone send prizes to the winners.
But I have been making an effort. Amanda has been helping me sift and sort pictures into categories. And Jessie, new addition to our team, has been lending a hand as well.
I’ve made a promise to myself to get the photo contest finished before The Slow Regard of Silent Things comes out at the end of the month.
Today we’re have part five, providing warm fuzzies in two categories:
- Hugs and Cuddles:
A lot of people sent in pictures of themselves just… well… loving the book.
The pure look of contentment on her face makes me want to smile.
The title of this one is “Better Than a Teddy” and I’ll admit that’s the reason we picked it to include in the blog. I know I’ve fallen asleep more than a few times cuddling a beloved book.
Jessie commented that she thought it was pretty telling that while this woman was wearing a shiny wedding ring, the look of adoration is all for the book. But I don’t like to think of my novel as a home wrecker. Can we just assume she’s in a relationship *with* the book?
I hope this one was a loving cuddle, and not a situation where the book fell onto this woman’s hair, pinning her to the ground because it was too heavy for her to move….
Here’s our winner for this category.
Part of me wants to say something like, “This is a wonderfully composed picture.” But the truth is, I don’t know anything about visual composition. All I know is that when I look at this picture and it makes my heart happy.
Even broken up into many blogs and categories, there are still too many pictures for us to put them all up in the blog. But we *have* posted the rest of this s category up in its own Photostream.
- Arts and Crafts:
I am not by my nature a crafty person, and I view folks who do crafts like this with a sort of baffled wonder and confusion. I don’t have the right sort of mind to make something small and particular with my hands.
Because this is nothing I would ever do myself, it strikes me as so phenominally cool. Even though I’m not skilled in the dark arts of the crochet, I know that all those tiny, tight stiches have to be hard….
That’s right. These ladies took the time to have the cover of WMF printed onto cloth and then sew that cloth into bikinis. That’s something that I never, ever in a million years would have guessed people would do.
We got several pieces of origami. But this one was unlike any I’ve ever seen before. The title was “The Amount of Paper Used to Make That Swan.” Which Jessie guesses is a reference to the fact that it probably took the amount of paper in WMF.
(You can see the other pieces of origami in the photostream a the end of the blog.)
We’ve got this cute guy in the garden.
And a dog in a hammock. But you should really click that one to look at it more closely. How it’s constructed is really cool.
Here we have the prize winning honorable mention. Not only were these people nice enough to send me this puzzle back in the day, but Amanda was particularly tickled by it. “The idea of these books putting together the map puzzle… I just can’t stop giggling at it.”
But we have one entry that honestly just blew the top off my head.
Remember the guilt I mentioned up above? This final entry, the winning entry in this category, is why I feel this guilt.
This person made something truly amazing. Something flat-out fucking awesome and it’s taken me more than three years to thank her properly and show you the coolness.
She sent in these three images:
You can’t appreciate these without looking at them more closely. So here’s each image separately. You have to click them to embiggen them…
The amount of detail here is awesome. The first thing Amanda noticed was that the chimney is made of a bra. It took us a long time before any of us noticed that the moon was actually a dinner plate.
I don’t want to steal the joy by pointing everything out. Click it and look at it more closely. Look at what everything is made of. It’s so, so cool….
The chapter in the ebook has even been turned to chapter 44, “The Catch” where Kvothe finishes and presents his arrow catch to Master Kilvin.
This is the Cthaeh in its tree. It has all of the butterfly wings scattered on the ground, all made out of tissue paper, and the tree itself is made of a sweater. Kvothe’s even naked. And, again, the ebook is turned to chapter 104, “The Cthaeh.”
The winners and our honorable mention will get their very own sets of the rare gold talent pipes.
Thank you everyone. You have delighted and amazed me. I’m only sorry it’s taken me so long to show off all of your awesome.
Speaking of, here’s the other arts and crafts pictures in the Photostream!
Feel free to “Oooh” and “Ahhh” in the comments below. These folks deserve it.