Category Archives: signing books

10th Anniversary Edition NOTW: Sneek Peek at Art, Tour Dates, and Events at NYCC

Heya folks…

The 10th Anniversary Edition of the Name of the Wind comes out on Tuesday, (October 3rd.)

What’s that you say? What 10th anniversary edition?

This one:

(I’ve been signing a lot of them for The Tinker’s Packs, lately.)

It’s a pretty, pretty book. And if you think the front cover looks nice, you should see the back….

Now that, my friends, is how you blurb a book. I’m all blushy.

The book has improved, cleaned up text. An introduction, an author’s note (by me), pronunciation guide, and several appendixes about things like the currency systems, the calendar, the Aturan Empire, etc etc.

Also? It has more than 20 illustrations from Dan Dos Santos like this:

And this:

And two new maps from Nathan Taylor like this:

And the appendixes are further illustrated by Nate Taylor like this:
So… yeah. That book. That is the one I’m talking about.
Here’s the dates for the very short book tour I’m doing:
  • Tuesday, October 3: Seattle, WA
7 PM: Reading, Q&A, and Signing with University Bookstore
University Temple United Methodist Church
  • Wednesday, October 4: San Diego, CA
7 PM: Reading, Q&A, and Signing with Mysterious Galaxy
Mysterious Galaxy Book Store
5943 Balboa Ave, Suite 100
San Diego, CA 92111

 

October 6-9: New York, NY for New York Comic Con

 

  • Friday, October 6th
10:30 AM-11:15 AM: The Adventure Zone: ABRA-KA-GRAPHIC NOVEL (Location: 300 W. 36TH ST., HUDSON MERCANTILE)

 

The Worldbuilders Party is an amazing time where you can buy tickets to play board games with cool folks like Naomi Novik, Trin Garritano, Myke Cole, Peter V. Brett, Holly Frey, Amy S. Foster, and lots more.
Tickets are still available over here.
7:45 PM-8:45 PM: An Evening with Pat Rothfuss. Javits, Room 1A06
  • Saturday, October 7th
2:45-3:45 PM: Telling Stories with Patrick Rothfuss, Jonathan Coulton & Friends. Javits, Room 1A06
5 PM-7 PM: Signing in the Autographing Area, Table 23
  • Sunday, October 8th
12:30 PM-2 pm: Signing in the Autographing Area, Table 22
  • Monday, October 9

6 PM: Reading, Q&A, and Signing with Barnes and Noble

Barnes & Noble Tribeca
97 Warren St,
New York, New York 10007
Purchase book in store on the day of the event to receive a wrist band for the signing line.
  • Tuesday, October 10: Pittsburgh, PA
7 PM:Reading, Q&A, and Signing with Barnes and Noble
301S. Hills Village
Pittsburgh, PA 15241
Purchase book in store on the day of the event to receive a wrist band for the signing line.
  • Wednesday, October 11: Boston, MA
7 PM: Reading, Q&A, and Signing with Brookline Booksmith
Brookline Booksmith
279 Harvard Street
Brookline, MA 02446
$5 or purchase of the new book for the 145 available seats in the actual store. An additional signing line will be outside.

*This event has sold out of seated tickets..however you can still sign up to attend the signing here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/patrick-rothfuss-1011-tickets-37891595783#tickets  And while you wait for the signing the reading will be broadcasted on an intercom for all who attend to enjoy.*

That’s all the planned events for now. Sorry if I’m not hitting your hometown, but there’s only so much touring I can do at this point.

If I’m not coming to your neck of the woods, you should contact your local bookstore and pre-order one. (It might work better than just showing up and hoping they have it in stock.) Sometimes bookstores don’t realize how many of you there are, and how enthusiastic y’all are….

Anyway. It’s super late right now. And I’m pretty tired. I need to get to bed.

I’ll see some of you soon….

pat

Also posted in a billion links, appearances, conventions | By Pat46 Responses

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?

Hank

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.

1959518_361338327387266_6310880623690526705_n

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….

wtnv

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.

authors

(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.

conventioncenter

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….

pat

Also posted in conventions, cool things, geeking out | By Pat42 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….

pat

Also posted in appearances, conventions, cool things, Worldbuilders | By Pat40 Responses

German Book, German Tour (And Austria)

[Edit (3/4/15): There’s updated info for these events in this blog so be sure to check it out…]

So today (Feb 21st) The Slow Regard of Silent Things hits the shelves in Germany.

Rothfuss_Musik_Stille_3d_4c(Woo! New cover!)

As usual, this book is significantly larger than its English counterpart. I haven’t gotten to see one in person yet, but in this photo mock-up they seem to be able to fit my name and the title horizontally on the spine. So that indicates that the book has undergone its typical 40% growth from being translated into German. (A phenomenon I mentioned in a blog a couple years back.)

Despite the fact that the post office is slow delivering my copy, I’ll be getting to see a copy of this book in person soon. In fact, I hope to be seeing a lot of them, as I’m going to be making a trip to Germany and Austria next month.

Here’s the schedule:

March 13-14  – Leipzig Book Fair

March 14 – Leipzig

March 16 – Berlin

March 17 – Cologne (Koln)

March 18 – Reutlingen 

March 20 – Vienna, Austria

As you can see, there are a lot of opportunities to catch me on this trip and witness my catastrophically inept attempts to speak German.

  • Details about the Events:

Though we’re calling most of these events “Readings” most of them are actually going to be readings combined with Question and Answer periods, followed by signings.

That said, each event is different, and I highly recommend you take a close look at the details of the event you’re thinking of attending to make sure you understand what’s really happening there.

Will you need a ticket? Will you need to reserve a place at the signing?

Honestly? I don’t know. It’s just my job to show up at these things and look pretty….

  • Concerning where I’m going and/or not going:

Do I wish I could do more events? Yes. But there’s only so much time in the world. I can’t hit major city in the country. Not even a quarter of them.

So before y’all start screeling things like “Why don’t you come to Frankfurt!!!1!” Please keep in mind that I’m already traveling more than 6,500 kilometers to get into your neighborhood. Globally speaking, I’m going to be right next door. If you’d really like to see me, why don’t you and your friends have a road trip and come the last 150 kilometers on your own?

C’mon. You know you want to have a road trip….

  • A Warning:

I don’t know when I’ll be back in Germany. But it probably won’t be for at least a couple years. This is fair warning. If you’d really like to hear me speak and get your book signed, this is the time to do it.

  • An Apology:

Originally, I had one more event in Heidelberg, and I know a few people got tickets and made plans before it was cancelled.

I’m incredibly sorry about that.

Some personal matters came up, and I had to change plans. I feel really bad about it.

In an attempt to make things right, everyone who was signed up for Heidelberg was offered tickets to the event in Reutlingen. What’s more, that event will also be live streamed, so you can see me, even if you can’t be there in person. (I’ll be posting the link to the livestream here, on twitter, and on facebook when we have it.)

{Fancy placeholder for eventual livestream link}

  • A Request:

As you can see, I’m announcing these events about 3 weeks ahead of time. What’s more, I’m painfully aware that a *lot* of the people who might be interested in attending don’t read my blog, or don’t speak English.

So if you know anyone who’d like to attend but might not know about it, I’d deeply appreciate it if you’d clue them in.

Thanks everybody,

pat

P.S. For those of you who are here in the US, and feeling all ensaddened because none of these events are for you.

Here’s two shows I have coming up with Paul & Storm and Joel Hodgson that I have coming up. (And yes, I just got a bit of a tingle when I typed that last bit.)

3/26 Portland http://bit.ly/NMPortland 

3/27 Seattle http://bit.ly/NMSeattle

I’ll be making a more elaborate posting about this later, but I thought I might want to throw this up sooner rather than later for those of you who like to plan your lives in advance a bit.

We’re going to be bringing in other guests, too, so you might want to grab your tickets sooner rather than later….

Also posted in book covers, travel abroad | By Pat81 Responses

Slow Regard of Silent Things: The Touring

First, very quickly, I should mention that I’m going to be out in New York this weekend, attending NYCC. If you’re attending, I look forward to greeting you with genial but non-contagious fist-bumps.

Not a convention sort of person? I’m also doing a show with Paul and Storm on Friday night at 8:00. You can get tickets here.

Don’t live in New York? Well, check out the rest of the blog, because I’m hitting several cities this month, and odds are you’re close to one of them….

*     *     *

So. The Slow Regard of Silent Things comes out at the end of the month.

20141009_051940

(As always, guest starring my thumb.)

That means it’s time to talk book tour.

When book two came out, I did my first for-real tour: 16 events in 15 days. Nobody was quite sure what was going to happen, least of all me.

It was brutal, exhausting, amazing, fun, surreal, and strange.

On the first day over 600 people turned out in Seattle, and we filled the University Bookstore until it was overflowing….

Book tour pictures 003

If you embiggen that picture, you can see tiny figures stretching back to the back wall. And it doesn’t show a similar amount of people off on the lefthand side. Or the ones behind the bookshelves, or around the corner, or standing on the stairs….

Our event in San Fransisco ran out of space weeks before the event, so I did a second reading/signing at Borderlands Books. 300 people showed up to that second event, despite the fact that it was midnight on a Thursday.

Book tour pictures 005

In Portland, so many people showed up that Powell’s ran out of books.

Yeah. Think about that for a second, Powell’s ran out of books.

That was just the first three days of the tour. The biggest thing we learned was that there are a *lot* of you. More specifically, there are a lot of you who want to come to these readings/signings. People drove for hours. People skipped work. People flew in from out of state. People attended on their birthdays and anniversaries.

Over the years, I’ve coined the phrase “Catastrophic Success.” Some of my signings were like that. They were so successful that things couldn’t help but go wrong. Lines were hard to manage. Fire codes were violated.

Worst of all, people that came to hear me read and answer questions didn’t get to hear me. Or they didn’t get a seat. Or both.

What’s your point, Rothfuss?

My point is, for this tour, we’re trying something different in a few cities. Knowing we’re going to get a lot of people, some bookstores went out of their way to get bigger venues. Places that have seats for 600-800 people. Places with good sound equipment.

Unfortunately, that means the bookstores have to pay for these venues. Which means they have to sell tickets to the events.

This is something I’ve always tried to avoid. But at this point it seems like the only way to keep things manageable. And you can show up to the signing knowing that there will be space for you, and you won’t have to stand at the back of the bookstore behind a bookcase where you can’t see or hear anything that’s going on.

First off, let me stress that if you end up going to one of the ticketed events, the cost of the ticket will include a signed book. 

Every event is a little different though. Different venues have different rules. You should look below for details, and if worse comes to worst, ask a question in the comments and I’ll answer it.

Tour Stops (in chronological order)

  • October 28: Portland OR
7:30pm, Hosted by Powell’s Books,
Newmark Theatre
1111 SW Broadway
Portland, OR 97205
 
Facebook Event
Tickets available here. Tickets are $28.95 and include a copy of the book.

There are some unfortunate surcharges attached to this ticket price. To make it up to you, I contacted The Doubleclicks, and asked them if they’d be willing to do a couple songs to open the show. They graciously agreed, so you’re going to get a little something extra there.

If I’ve had enough caffeine, I might even sing a song with them….

  • October 29:  San Diego CA
 7:30pm, Mysterious Galaxy
7051 Clairemont Mesa Blvd.
San Diego, CA 92111
Phone: 858-268-4747
Facebook Event

People who buy books at the store starting on Release Day will get a number ticket for the line. Everyone is welcome, but folks who bought their books through Mysterious Galaxy will get to be first in line. They’re hosting the event, so that’s fair…

  • October 30:  Seattle WA
7:00pm, Hosted by University Book Store,
University Temple
1415 NE 43rd St.
Seattle, WA 98105
Facebook Event
Tickets available here.

Tickets for this event are $18.95. Each ticket will get seats for TWO people and one signed book.

Also, we’ve got the fabulous Molly Lewis doing a couple songs to start off the show for me. Because I figure if you have a theater, you might as well do some real music in it, and for that, we need a real musician.

There may be singing….

  • October 31: Boswell Books, Milwaukee WI
7:00pm, Hosted by Boswell Book Company
The UWM Union Ballroom
2200 E. Kenwood Ave.
Milwaukee, WI 53211
Facebook Event
Tickets available here.

The ticket price is $22.00 and includes a copy of the book. It’s Halloween, so costumes are encouraged….

  • November 1: Lexington KY
7:00pm, Joseph-Beth Booksellers
161 Lexington Green Circle
Lexington, KY 40503
Phone: 859-273-2911
Facebook Event
  • November 2: Skokie, IL
3:00pm  (Note Earlier Time)  Barnes & Noble
55 Old Orchard Center
Skokie, IL 60077
Phone: 847-676-2230
Facebook Event
  • November 3: Fenton, MO
7:00pm, Barnes & Noble
721 Gravois Road
Fenton, MO 63026
Facebook Event

*     *     *

And there we are. Not nearly as many events as I did with book two. But I have two kids now, Oot is five, and misses me when I’m gone. What’s more, Cutie is 10 months old, an age where he is composed entirely of giggles and grinning pink pudge.

20140828_213229

I can’t spend twenty days away from the both of them. It’s not healthy for them, and it’s not healthy for me.

If you have any questions, hit us in the comments below and we’ll do our best to answer.

And if you’re not close to any of those cities, stay tuned to the blog. I’ll be posting up information about how you can get signed copies of the book, even if you can’t make it to a signing…

See some of you soon,

pat

Also posted in appearances, Cutie Snoo, upcoming publications | By Pat103 Responses

Meeting Terry Pratchett

So as I mentioned yesterday, while I was at NADWcon this weekend, I got the chance to get a book signed by Terry Pratchett.

The thought of getting a book signed is an odd one to me. In these last several months, it’s possible that I’ve signed thousands of books. Many thousands. I’ve signed books to families, to kids, to grandparents. I’ve signed books in warehouses, libraries, bookstores, and colleges….

But honestly, I don’t know if I’ve ever approached someone to get their autograph. Not in a formal setting. And certainly not anyone of Terry Pratchett’s status. Not someone I’ve been reading since I stumbled onto a copy of Sourcery in Shopko in 1989….

By the time Monday rolled around, I’d been at the convention for three solid days. And truth be told, I was kinda hoping that I might run into Terry at some point in that time. Maybe we’d be in the elevator together. Maybe we’d meet in the hallway on the way to a panel. Maybe someone would introduce us and I’d get a chance to say a few words….

But it didn’t happen. I wasn’t surprised or disappointed. I know how these things work. It’s a big con, and Terry’s the star of the show. They have to work hard to protect the Guest of Honor at events like this or they’re mobbed by fans. If they aren’t careful, a guest like Terry will have a hard time finding a moment’s peace to eat. I’ve seen some titan-level writers who have trouble simply walking down a hallway at a con without a handful of people asking for an autograph or a picture.

So I didn’t stalk Pratchett. I didn’t arrange an introduction, or just happen to bump into him somewhere. Even when I found out that his room was right next to mine in the hotel, I didn’t do anything like leave a copy of The Princess and Mr. Whiffle outside his door. I didn’t want to be that guy.

The signings were carefully controlled, too. They have to be. Terry has written more than 50 books, and everyone there would like nothing more than to get a bunch signed. If they let everyone get as many books signed as they’d like, Terry would have spent the entire length of the four-day convention signing books.

I’m not being hyperbolic here. It’s the literal truth. He could easily have spent 70 hours signing books if the convention didn’t work hard to control the situation.

This is something I understand only now that I’ve been on my first signing tour.

Take me, for example. I’m a newbie author. I have two books out (compared to Pratchett’s 50+). I’ve been published for four years (compared Pratchett’s 40.)

To put this in different terms, I am currently hovering around 2300 Gaiman-Day units of cool, which isn’t bad.

But Pratchett probably ranks in at more than 60,000. I mean, when you write so well they actually knight you, you’re kind of a big deal.

Despite my relatively newbie nature, when I showed up in Houston back in March, I signed books for 9 hours straight. Given that I’m about 2% of a Pratchett, you can see how quickly one of his signings could spiral into madness if it wasn’t carefully controlled.

My point is, I knew Pratchett wasn’t going to be signing books all higgledy piggledy at the con. Even if he signed a single book for every person there, it would take him 12 hours. Because of that, I knew I probably wasn’t going to have a chance to get anything signed.

That said, I was pleasantly surprised when the guest liaison for the convention told me that if I wanted, he might be able to pull a few little strings for me. Maybe enough for me to get a book signed. Maybe.

I was honest, and said I’d be grateful for the chance. If I could get a book signed, I’d be able to use it for the charity I run every year.

He said that if the book was for charity, we could almost certainly make it happen.

So I bought a copy of Nation from Dreamhaven in the dealer’s room, and on Monday, I wandered to the hall where Terry was signing. He was mostly autographing stuff items that had been sold at the charity auction the day before. I’d had to miss the auction because I was doing some paneling. But it was probably for the best, as I’d already spent more money than I should on swag.

The guest liaison motioned me over and told me it was cool if I got something signed. It really didn’t have to be for the charity, either, he said. I could just get something for myself.

Suddenly I was really conflicted. I’d brought a copy of Where’s My Cow? to the convention, because whenever we travel with Oot, we need to bring about a dozen books to keep him happy. (He’s like his dad that way.)

I’ve been reading Where’s My Cow? to Oot since before he could talk. It’s a great book, and the ending makes me a little weepy, because I’ve turned into a total soppy git ever since I became a dad.

Oot knows what noises the animals make, even the  Hippopotamus. He really likes the page with Coffin’ Henry on it, too, and asks to see it again and again.

He also enthusiastically says, “Buggrit!” Which is a little troubling to Sarah, but pleases me to no end.

So when the guest liaison says I can get any book signed, I realize I have Where is My Cow? in my backpack. I could get Pratchett to sign the book to Oot….

It’s a hard moment, but I decide to get Nation signed for Worldbuilders instead. Because personal isn’t the same as important. The signed book will be a nice draw for Worldbuilders if we throw it into the general mix of prizes. And if we auction it, I’m guessing it will bring in at least a couple hundred bucks. That’s enough for a couple of goats….

I consider trying to get both signed, of course. Because I’m only human. Terry is a nice guy, and accommodating, so I’m guessing if I pulled a second book out of my bag when I was at the table he’d go for it….

But I shake off the thought fairly quickly. I am not a special snowflake. I don’t deserve to get two books signed when everybody else gets one. If everyone tried to pull that shit, Terry would have an extra 2000 books to sign.

The guest liaison brings me up to the table and introduces me, explaining that I’m fellow author and that I’ve hit the New York Times with both my books. That’s nice of him. It lets me stand a little taller.

Terry looks up at me and says, “I’m guessing you’re fantasy, not science fiction.”

I grin and nod. “We do have a certain look, don’t we?”

I’m pleasantly surprised by the fact that I don’t feel terribly tongue-tied or shaky or awkward.

[Author’s note: Sarah just brought Oot in after his shower. He grinned at me and, “Bugit! … Hand and shrimp! Fow Ron!” (This will only make sense if you’ve read a lot of Discworld or Where’s My Cow?)]

I hand over the copy of Nation and say, “This book was absolutely gorgeous. It might be the best book I’ve ever read.”

“I got a lot of letters from children,” Terry says. “They were upset because it didn’t have a happy ending.”

He opens the book and signs his name. His signature is way loopier than mine.

Terry keeps talking as he signs, “But I always reply, ‘It has a ending. It has the right ending.”

“It has the perfect ending,” I say. “It was beautiful. It absolutely broke my heart.”

And that was it. I moved away and made room for the rest of the folk who had things for him to sign.

Would I have liked to talk longer? Maybe chat about writing and the art of ending? Of course. Who wouldn’t?

But there’s only so much time. And honestly, I was happy to wrap things up before I accidentally made an ass of myself.

Besides, though Pratchett didn’t know it, he’s said about the best thing possible to me. I worry about the ending of my story sometimes. I worry that people won’t like it. Most of my readers are hoping for a particular type of ending. They e-mail me with their theories and their hopes. They want X to hook up with Y. They want Z to get his comeuppance. They want such and such story tied up in a certain way….

I know it comes from a place of love. But it makes me nervous.

After talking to Terry, I’m less nervous. I can’t give each of you your own personalize ending, containing everything you specifically wanted out of the story. That’s impossible.

But I can give you the right ending. A perfect ending.

That’s all for now. If you have a spare moment, send a good thought this way tomorrow.

I don’t want to give any specifics, but tomorrow is going to be a little rough for us. If everything goes well it won’t be a big deal. But still, if you have a spare thought, Oot and Sarah and I could use it, just for luck.

Later,

pat

Also posted in conventions, meeting famous people, Oot, Tales from the Con, Things I didn't know about publishing | By Pat100 Responses

FAQ: The Wise Man’s Fear Signing Tour

Ever since I posted up the schedule for my upcoming signing tour, people have been asking a lot of questions.


View Patrick Rothfuss, Wise Man’s Fear, Book Tour in a larger map

This has been a good thing. Your questions made me think about the tour in ways I wouldn’t have considered otherwise. I’ve spent weeks figuring things out, and now I have all sorts of answers for you. Plus a few other cool things that will probably be of interest even if you’re not planning on coming to one of the signings.

Also, for those of you who RSVP’d to the San Francisco event and couldn’t get a seat, we’ve managed to arrange a second event in San Francisco. Details are below in Question #2.

Ready? Here we go.

1. This is going to be my first booksigning and I don’t know the etiquette. Do I need to buy my book at the bookstore, or can I bring a book from home?

Honestly? The polite thing to do is to buy your book at the bookstore hosting the event.

You see, the bookstores hosting me put a lot of time, energy, and money into events like these. They order a BUNCH of books. They bring in extra staff to manage the crowds, set up chairs, and sometimes reorganize parts of the store. If the signing goes late, they have to keep the store open after hours.

Also, you have to remember that while the bookstore loves you, they are also, you know, a store. A store that sells books. They need to sell books to stay in business.

But there are other reasons too. Let’s say I do a signing and the bookstore sells 500 books. That bookstore is happy. That bookstore likes me. That bookstore wants to have me back for future events. Also, my publisher is happy, and they feel like spending the money to fly me out to events like this are a worthwhile investment.

But if I do a signing and sell, say, 20 books, odds are the bookstore won’t be inviting me back in the future.

Ultimately, buying a book at the hosting store is just good manners. They’re putting a lot of work into the event, and buying a book is the best way to show that you appreciate that.

*** There is one exception to this rule. There will be no books for sale at the Library of Congress reading. I’m happy to sign your book. But you’ll have to bring them with you.

Now does that mean you MUST buy a book to attend? Well, not exactly, read on…

1b. Pat, I called the bookstore and they said if I didn’t buy a book there, I couldn’t get anything signed. But I’m planning on buying your book March 1st, then driving three hours to get to your signing on the 10th. I’m a poor college student. I really can’t afford to buy a second book…

When I got the first message like this, I was surprised.

Needless to say, this isn’t the sort of policy I feel good about. The main reason I do these readings is so I can meet up with fans. I don’t want anyone getting turned away because they can’t afford to buy a book. (Or a second book, as with the example above.)

So I called my lovely PR team. They, in turn, called all the stores.

As a result, I’ve been reassured that nobody will be turned away from any of the events simply because they aren’t buying a book at the store.

That said, you can probably expect the hosting bookstores to give some preferential treatment to the people who buy at least one copy of the book in store. For example, they’ll probably get to go through the signing lines first. If we get huge turnouts, people who buy books in store will probably get first dibs on seating. Stuff like that.

1c. Can I get more than one book signed?

Yes.

The number of books you can get signed varies from store to store. Some stores will let you take three items through the line, some stores will let you bring five. If you want more books than that signed, you’ll have to get back in line.

For specifics, I’d suggest calling the store and asking them.

What if you’re picking up books for eight of your best friends? Well, odds are you’ll still be able to get them signed. The main reason I’m doing this tour is to sign books. My intention at each event is to sign books until there are no more books to sign.

I will only stop if I need to catch a plane, if the store needs to close, or if I collapse from exhaustion. That’s my plan.

2. I just found out that your reading in San Fransisco has limited seating! I e-mailed them 6 hours after you announced it, but all the seats were already taken! I was going to drive there with my girlfriend as her birthday present! Is there anything I can do to get us in? Anything?

I got a lot of messages like this. A lot.

The truth is, we were caught off-guard at how many people responded to the event. We weren’t expecting such a big turnout.

As soon as we realized the problem, we started trying to figure out some way to get more people in. The fabulous folks who run SF in SF tried to find a bigger venue, but there wasn’t anything available. We couldn’t do an afternoon event because I’m not even going to be in San Francisco until 3:30 that day.

Still, I felt really bad that so many people were going to be disappointed. So I worked with my PR team and the folks at Borderlands Books to create an overflow event. Something to give the rest of the people chance to come see me and get their books signed.

So. We are holding a second event in San Fransisco. It will be DIRECTLY AFTER the evening event on March 3rd.

It will, in fact, be my first-ever midnight signing.

The second event will be held at:

Borderlands Cafe
870  Valencia St. (between 19th and 20th),
San Francisco 94110.
  • Books will be on sale at Borderlands Books, right next door.
  • First come, first seated.  There will also be standing room and, once the cafe is at capacity, there will be overflow space at the bookstore. We can’t guarantee that there will be enough space to accommodate everyone.

Edit: * The Cafe will be closed between 9:00 and 10:00. But at 10:00 they’ll be back up and running, so you can show up, grab your seat, and grab some coffee in preparation for the event.

  • If you don’t have a seat at the event at SF in SF, YOU SHOULD COME TO THE MIDNIGHT EVENT INSTEAD. Only people with tickets to the SF in SF event are guaranteed to get their books signed there.
  • Each person will be able to get two books signed. People wishing additional signatures will have to go to the end of the line and may or may not be able to get additional books signed, depending on how late the event continues. (I do have to catch a plane in the morning, you realize.)
  • There is no need to RSVP for this event and no seats will be reserved.

It’s entirely possible that I will be wearing my footie pajamas for this event, as I’ll be giving up a couple hours sleep to make it happen. It’s also fair to say that I’ll probably look a little wild around the eyes. But that’s half the fun of a midnight signing, isn’t it?

My sincerest thanks go out to the folks at Borderlands for helping us pull this together at the last moment.

Thanks so much, guys.

3. Can I get my picture taken with you at the signing?

Normally, my answer would be an unqualified yes. Anyone who’s glanced at my facebook page, has seen ample proof of the fact that I’m not camera shy.

(Yes. I’m wearing a kilt.)

However, there are certain logistical problems with me taking pictures with everyone at these bigger signings. Simply said, photos make a long signing even longer. But what usually happens is that you hand your phone over to someone else to take the shot, then we pose, then the person can’t figure out how to use your camera. Then you explain to them that it’s the button on the side….

You know what I’m talking about, right? We’ve all been there.

But let’s do some simple math. Assume that 200 people show up to my signing, and I take *just one minute* with each of them to shake hands, exchange a few words, then sign a book. 200 people at a minute each means that the signing is already more than three hours long.

That’s not even counting if people have more than one book. Or if people ask me for personalizations. If we add another 50 people taking pictures on top of that, the signing will suddenly be five hours long.

So my answer to this is… Maybe. We can probably snap a quick picture. But don’t be offended if we have to skip it if the line is really long.

4. Will you sign copies of The Name of the Wind?

Hell yes. Just because I have a new baby doesn’t mean I don’t love my first baby.

5. Will there be hardcover copies of The Name of the Wind available to purchase at your signings?

Almost certainly. But if you want to make sure you get one, the smart thing to do would be to call the bookstore and reserve a copy.

6. Will there be copies of The Princess and Mr. Whiffle available at your signings?

Maybe. Very maybe. Most bookstores only know about me because of The Name of the Wind. If you want to buy a Princess book, I’d suggest you call the store and try to reserve one. If they don’t have one in stock, I’m sure they’d be happy to order one in for you. Bookstores love selling books, you know.

6b. Will I get a special promotional sticker if I buy a copy of the Princess book at the store?

Good idea. I’ll throw some of those in my luggage. So yes. You can have a sticker.

7. Can I bring you cookies or some other sort of treat?

Let’s be clear here. I’m not posting this question as a desperate attempt to cage cookies off of everyone. I’m posting this question because at least five or six different people e-mailed me on the subject. So I figure it’s a legitimate FAQ.

The short answer is that yes. You can bring me cookies. That’s very sweet of you.

The long answer is that if you do bring me cookies. Please don’t be offended if I give some of them away. This tour is going to be kinda rough on my system, so I’m going to try and eat healthy. If I eat a dozen cookies at each signing, it’s going to ruin me.

7b. Do you have a cookie preference?

Chocolate-chip cookies are the favored kind of cookie. Raisin cookies are for people who secretly hate themselves. A real cookie shouldn’t have fruit in it. A real cookie is bad for you. It is like a delicious nail driven directly into your heart.

8. Do you hug?

I have been known to hug.

That said, you might want to refer to the logistical issues I mention up in question #3. It might have to be a short hug.

And watch those hands.

9. I want to buy a Kingkiller t-shirt to wear to your signing, but I can’t find the link to your store, the Tinker’s Sack. What’s the URL?

Here’s the link for you.

And by the way, it’s called The Tinker’s Pack. Pack. With a “P”.

The Tinker’s Sack would be a whole different sort of website. I don’t know what they’d sell there, but I don’t think you’d want to buy any….

10. What are your signings like?

First say howdy to everyone and explain some of the ground rules of the event.

Then comes the reading. I read a little something, answer some questions from the audience, then read another little something, then more questions. I do this for about an hour.

Last comes the signing. I pretty much sign books until they make me leave the store.

11. When are you coming to Canada/Spain/Ireland/Estonia?

Rest assured than when I make plans to travel to another country, I’ll post those signings up on the blog as well.

12. I live in Mexico/Germany/Korea/Bulgaria. How can I get a copy of the English version of your book? I want to read the original language.

If none of your local bookstores carry English books, I know that some of the stores that are carrying signed versions of my book are also willing to do international shipping. You could order from them….

13. I won’t have had time to read the whole book before I attend the your event in Portland. I’m looking forward to hearing you read, but I hate spoilers. Do I need to be afraid?

I hate spoilers, too. So you don’t need to worry about me giving away big secrets like the fact that Kvothe is really Kaiser Soze.

14.You’re coming to my town, but I’m going to have to miss your signing by just a couple hours because of attend class/go to work/catch a plane/etc.  Can I meet up with you a little earlier and have you sign my book?

I’m sorry. But my schedule is way too tight to do anything like that. A lot of times, I won’t even be flying into town until a couple hours before the signing.

But if it’s your hometown, you can just call the bookstore and reserve a copy. Whenever I do a signing, the bookstore has me sign a bunch of books for people that couldn’t make it to the event.

15. Will you personalize my book to me? To my dad? To my girlfriend?

Yes. Yes. And yes.

However, I probably won’t have time to write anything really lengthy in the books. (See the Answer to #3 for the reason why.)

That means personalizations will probably have to be limited to a name and just a few words. No really long quotes.

16. Will you Sign my Nook/Kindle/E-reader?

Yes. This is something that I’ve done before.

That said, you might want to check out the answer to question #1 up there. Showing up with your kindle is just the same as bringing a book from home.

17. I have an important question. About how tall are you?

I am one thousand feet tall.

18. Is it really surreal that people are taking days off of work to come see you?

Yes.  It is weird as hell.

19.Will your baby be with you at any of your signings?

My accountant has informed me that if I’m going to keep writing him off as a promotional expense, I need to take him to at least one signing.

That means it’s a fairly safe bet that you’ll see Oot in Madison. You might also get to see him in DC, New York, or Boston.

(He’s the one on the right.)

Who’s daddy’s cute little deduction?

20. Mr. Rothfuss, is it better for you if I buy your book at any particular store? Or in any particular way? (Nook? Hardcover?) I love your books, and so I want to support you as much as I can.

Over the last month, I’ve had more than a dozen messages like this. It just goes to prove something I already knew, that my readers are delightfully considerate human beings.

The truth is. I make more money off the hardcover of the book. Also, the more hardcover books I sell, the better chance I have of making it onto the New York Times Bestseller list. That’s kind of a big deal.

For the most part, it doesn’t matter where you buy the book, though I do usually encourage people to shop locally. Because supporting your local economy is a good thing.

If you *really* want to help, you could make a point of buying the book close to the release date. If enough people buy the book in that first week, I might get onto the New York Times Bestseller list. That would be really good for my career.

There you are folks. All of the big questions answered.

And for those of you who actually took the time to read all the way to the end. Here’s a little something extra. Over on the Gollancz facebook page, they have a video of me reading a scene from the Wise Man’s fear. I taped it with them more than a year ago when I was in England, so it’s a little different from the finished version. But if you’re looking for a little taste of what’s coming. You can head over there.

And don’t worry, it’s only a small piece in from the second chapter. No big spoilers. It isn’t until the third chapter that we learn that Kvothe’s dad isn’t really dead, he was merely horribly wounded and now serves as the strong right hand of the empire, Darth Vader.

Share and enjoy,

pat

Also posted in appearances, Fanmail Q + A, FAQ, the longest fucking blog ever | By Pat137 Responses
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