Tag Archives: Brandon Sanderson

Beautiful Jewelry from Badali

Well folks, we’ve just finished our third full day of Worldbuilders, and we’ve already raised over $75,000. I feel pretty good about that.

That means we’ve already unlocked our first two stretch goals.

You should really check them out, then share them around with the rest of the world. Your friends on social media will thank you for it.

My first stretch goal unlocks at $100K (it involves Tom Bombadil) and there are many more. There’s a full list in the Hub Blog. Or you can do what I do, and obsessively click the refresh button on the Worldbuilders Page, watching the donation totals slowly rise. Trying to use the power of your mind to *make* the totals rise. WILLING them to grow.

Or, y’know, you could go and donate on our team page. Scientific studies have shown that that makes our donation totals go up too.

And now, today’s donations….

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Badali Jewelry has been with Worldbuilders for a long time. And they’ve been with me, personally for even longer. They were my very first company to ever approach me for a licencing agreement based on my books. Since then they’ve produced truly marvelous work set in my world, including the Eolian talent pipes, Denna’s ring, and the Iron Wheel.

They have a lot of great stuff, including a bunch of officially licensed jewelry from some of the biggest fantasy series around, like the Dresden Files, Iron Druid, Wheel of Time, Lord of the Rings, and much more.

This year they’re helping Worldbuilders in two ways. The first is….

For the duration of the Fundraiser, if you buy anything at all on their website with that code:

~ You get $10 off your shipping costs.
~ 10% of the money goes directly to Worldbuilders

Secondarily, they’ve given us a lovely array of jewelry we’re auctioning off.

Arkenstone

Just like the real Arkenstone, the colors change based on the light, and it comes in a swank little wooden chest with a black velvet pillow.

They really go the extra mile to make their items collectible and true to the story. If you want to get your hands on the Arkenstone with all the money coming to Worldbuilders, grab it right here.

  • Elessar the Elfstone Brooch from The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkein.

Elessar

This piece is so new, Badali hasn’t even added it to their online store yet.

It was given to Aragorn by Galadriel, and was intended to be a sign of acceptance of Aragorn’s future as the rightful heir of Gondor.

Like we said, Badali doesn’t mess around. Grab it here.

  • Khuzdul Dwarven Battle Axe Necklace from The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkein.

Khuzdul

This intricate battle axe features the Khuzdul battle cry: “Baruk Khazâd!  Khazâd ai-mênu!” The translation is: “Axes of the Dwarves!  The Dwarves are upon you!”

It’s beautifully detailed work, and it can be yours if you bid here.

  • Asha’man Dragon Pin from The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan. Sterling Silver.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Hardcore Wheel of Time geeks will appreciate this pin. The design was approved by Robert Jordan. It was awarded when men were promoted to the level of full Asha’man, and worn on the right collar of their black coats.

If you want this pin to show off your geek cred, head over here and bid on it.

  • The Wheel of Time Necklace from The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan. Sterling Silver.

Wheel of  Time

Inspired from the pages of The Wheel of Time ® series by Robert Jordan comes The Wheel of Time Necklace, skillfully crafted in sterling silver.

The Wheel of Time, also call the Snake-Wheel™, is the iconic image of the best seller novels by Robert Jordan.  The Wheel symbolizes the ever turning and reoccurring nature of time.  All things that happen have happened before and will happen again.  The necklace features the Great Serpent™ entwined through the wheel forming an infinity symbol, reiterating the eternal nature of the past, present and future.  The Great Serpent is also a symbol for time and eternity. Bid on it here.

New Moon

ElfQuest has been running for ages (since 1978), and is the reason a lot of the authors you read these days got into fantasy.

Here you can have a pin made to replicate a famous blade from the series, carried by Cutter Kinseeker as the eleventh leader of the Wolfriders. If you’re a geek for that sort of thing, you should bid on it over here.

  • Atticus’s Necklace from the Iron Druid Chronicles by Kevin Hearne.

Atticus

The Iron Druid Chronicles are a big favorite with the Worldbuilders Team. Nicole, Brett, and Amanda have all devoured them. What’s more, Kevin Hearne has been a great supporter of Worldbuilders for years. So it’s nice to see the jewelry from his books getting the Badali Treatment.

This is Atticus’s iron amulet with all of its charms that he uses for protection and magic. We can’t guarantee it will grant you the same powers, but if you happen to be a druid you could probably make use of it. Bid on it over here.

  • Granuaile’s Iron Amulet Pendant from the Iron Druid Chronicles by Kevin Hearne.

Grannuaile

Granuaile’s iron amulet is less intricate than Atticus’s, but just as cool in its own right. For those of you who want to play more of the stealth-geek card, this is a great option.

If you want to bid on it, head over here.

  • Bob the Skull Pendant from The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher. Sterling Silver.

Bob the Skull

I love the Dresden Files with a fierce love. And Bob is definitely a factor in that love.

Far-reaching knowledge of the arcane and sardonic wit not guaranteed with purchase. Bid over here for the chance anyway.

  • Harry Dresden Shield Bracelet from The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher. Sterling Silver.

Shield Bracelet

The chance to have Dresden’s shield bracelet almost broke Amanda when it first came out. And honestly, I thought that was a pretty reasonable reaction. Who doesn’t want to look as badass as Harry Dresden, shaking this bracelet out and holding up their left hand with all the confidence that someone isn’t going to shoot a flamethrower at your and pretty much melt your entire hand off?

Using this bracelet to ward off magical attacks requires knowledge that Badali and Worldbuilders can’t provide. That said, owning it will probably raise your geeky herd rank. Bid here.

Aon Omi

This is one of the pendants used in Elantris to perform magic. This one in particular is the symbol for Love, and was exchanged at a wedding in the novel.

We can’t promise any particular results on that front, but you can get your hands on it right here.

Jeseh Glyph

The syntax-free glyphs from Stormlight Archive were begging to be made into jewelry, and Badali was all too happy to comply. There are many glyphs available, but this one in particular is for Jeseh.

If you want this kind of protection, you can bid on it over here.

Oathbringer Shardblade

The idea behind the Shardblades is seriously cool. They’re incredibly treasured and rare, and can cut easily through any inanimate object, but when passing through living flesh it cuts through the soul rather than the body.

Seriously. This pendant of awesome can be yours if you bid on it over here.

  • Mistborn Vial Necklace with both an Atium Vial and a Mistborn Mixture Vial from Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson.

Atium & Mistborn Vial

This necklace comes with two different vials of Mistborn Metals, so you’re getting some sweet variety.

It includes one vial of the Mistborn Mixture (a mix of the 8 basic Allomantic metals) and a vial containing Atium, one of the fourteen known Allomantic metals from the Mistborn universe.  The vials can be swapped out at your whim. If you want it, bid early and often over here.

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Don’t forget that anything you buy on Badali’s Website between now and the end of the fundraiser with code WBLD14 gets you $10 off shipping and gives Worldbuilders 10% of the sale.

And this link will take you a page where you can check out all the auctions we’re currently running. We’ve got more than just jewelery up for grabs, and you don’t want to miss out.

Posted in Worldbuilders 2014 | By Pat9 Responses

The Tinker’s Packs: Signed Books, a New Poster, and a Game With Bast

Okay. For those of you waiting for news. I have news about that news. Meta-news, if you will.

The news-about-news is that I’ll be able to post up what I want to show you at the end of the week. Friday or Saturday. That will be my next blog.

And just so nobody’s hopes and dreams are crushed. It’s not going to be an announcement about the release of The Doors of Stone. But it will be an announcement about a book.

Is that vague enough for you?

Since I’ve got to hold off on that news, here’s something completely different for today…

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As many of you already know, we run an online store called The Tinker’s Packs where you can buy…. well… kind of a whole bunch of stuff: Foreign editions of a lot of different fantasy books, t-shirts, jewelry, and hard-to-find copies of my books.

(Just so you know, all the money we make in the store goes to Worldbuilders.)

Last year, we tried a little experiment. In October, we put some signed books from other authors up in the store. New books that had just hit the shelves. It was a new thing for us, and we weren’t sure people would be interested.

They sold out in about a couple of hours.

Then in November, we tried it again. More new books signed by the authors.

Those sold out in just a couple hours too.

So we’ve decided to make this a regular thing. We’ll put up 3-4 new signed books in the store every month. You get to find out about new books, people get to add some cool signed copies of the books to their libraries, and Worldbuilders makes some money.

Everybody wins.

The only weak link in this plan is the name. I’ve been struggling to find a cool one, if we’re going to make this a regular thing. The best we’ve been able to come up with so far is “Library Builders.”

If y’all could come up with a better name, I’d welcome it. We’ll take suggestions down in the comments. If someone knocks it out of the park, they will be lavishly rewarded and promoted to minion first class, with all the privileges that entails.

Okay. Here’s what we’re adding to the store today. And remember, the books tend to sell fast, so if you want them, jump on them fast.

BreachZone - Bookplate

Here we’ve got the third book in the Shadow Ops series, and has been awesomely received so far. All the copies we have come with signed bookplates from Myke. Even cooler, one of the copies will come with one of the Challenge Coins Myke had printed as a special promo for his book. It was packaged in at random, so it’ll  be a surprise for everyone involved who gets it.

If you want one, get it before it’s gone.

Shibboleth

This is the sequel to The Twelve Fingered Boy. (My review on Goodreads, if you’re interested.) These are lovely first-edition hardcover copies, all signed by the author.

You can grab them over here.

SandersonBlogImage

This massive tome is the second in the Stormlight Archive series. Aside from putting Wise Man’s Fear to shame in word count, it hit #1 on the New York Times Bestseller List.

If you don’t have your copy yet, why not buy it from us, and put some money toward a good cause at the same time?

  • New Boss Monster Promo Cards

Some of you might remember the folks over at Boss Monster from last year when they created a special promo card for Kvothe. They printed 200 of them, and we sold practically all of them at Gencon. The few we brought back and put in the store got snapped up really quickly.

This year, they’ve done two more promo cards exclusively for us. Both of them are versions of Bast.

Bastas_-_Epic_Thief

(Click to Embiggen.)

It’s a fun game that the crew here has really enjoyed.

If you’ve never played, you can pick up both the game *and* the two promo cards.

BossMonsterSet

Or, if you already have the game, and you’re just looking to fill out your sets, you have the option of buying  just the cards, whether you want just one or both together.

There aren’t many copies of the Epic Hero Bastas, so if you want one, you should probably grab it soon…

  • “Calling” Poster

calling-compressed

I’m pretty open about the fact that I have a profile on Deviantart where I skulk about, looking at fanart.

A while back, I found this lovely depiction of Kvothe and asked the artist (Beth, who has a great portfolio) if we could use it for Worldbuilders. Much to my surprise, she graciously donated the rights for us to make some posters. We’ve got 200 of them in the store signed and numbered.

That’s all for now. I’ll be seeing some of you in Chicago soon.

Fondly,

pat

Posted in The Tinker's Packs | By Pat107 Responses

Signed Books from Awesome Authors

Worldbuilders-Logo_Web_Smaller

This is a Worldbuilders blog.

First, some news: Pat hasn’t mentioned it yet on the blog, but he’s had a baby. So we (the Worldbuilders team) are going to put together a blog or two for him because he’s trying to take care of Sarah, Oot, and the newest edition to the family. Codename: Cutie Snoo.

Now, on to the blog:

Authors are always some of our coolest donors.  The books are always signed, and the authors are always amazingly helpful and willing to participate in fun ways.  Our stretch goals this year are evidence of that.

So be sure to say thank you to everyone who donated if you get the chance.  Let’s check these out…

  • Auction: A set of Inda books: Inda, The Fox, King’s Shield, Treason’s Shore, and Banner of Damned. All first editions, signed and doodled by Sherwood Smith.  Also includes tapestry hand stitched by Sherwood Smith.

Inda Series with tapestry 2

Last year, Sherwood Smith took the time to draw the map from the Inda series, along with donating the full set of books.  This year she outshone even that, by hand-stitching a tapestry to send along with the books, all of which are intricately doodled first printings.

Sherwood's Doodles

(Click to embiggen)

These are truly one of a kind prizes, which Sherwood put a lot of time into.  We’ve put them into an auction so that someone who truly loves them for how special they are can have them.  If you’re that someone, go over here to bid.

  • A set of the UK editions of The Iron Druid Chronicles: Hounded, Hexed, Hammered, Tricked, Trapped, and Hunted. Signed by Kevin Hearne.

Iron Druid All

Kevin’s part in the Thank You Video last year may have been the office favorite, if only for his enthusiastic use of a flagon.  Most of the staff have read at least the first few novels in the Chronicles, and not a one has been disappointed.

“Kevin Hearne’s Iron Druid Chronicles has grown from strength to strength since its publication in 2011. Kevin’s writing style along with his characterization has made him the darling of urban fantasy readers all over the world.” – Fantasy Book Critic

Rig standing

This YA novel won the 2012 Young Writers Prize. It’s an up and comer, and doing pretty well for itself.

It’s also written by a long time fan.  Some of you who have been around for a while may recognize the author – our very own Captain Joe, winner of the previous photo contest and all-around awesome person.

“[The Rig] is a non-stop thrill ride from beginning to end, and as the first book in a series it left me wanting more come the final page. Even better, it did this without finishing on a massive cliffhanger – the story comes to a satisfying conclusion, but the door is wide open for the next installment.” – The Book Zone

  • Auction: Set of first-edition Black Jewels Novels: The Shadow Queen, Shalador’s Lady, Tangled Webs, and an ARC of Murder of Crows from The Others Series. Signed by Anne Bishop

Black Jewels standing

This is a great set of novels, all of which are first editions, and the ARC included won’t be published until March 2014.

If you want the sneak peek, be sure to go bid on this.

  • Copies of Marking Time.  Signed by April White, with signed boomarks.

Marking Time standing

It’s always nice when an author adds that extra little something, and these bookmarks are a nice touch to add to these books. This is the first book in a trilogy about a 17-year-old grafitti artist who finds herself sent back in time to fraternize with a bunch of immortals.

CarniePunk lying

We had some of these sent by Kevin Hearne last year, but Rachel Caine took the time to send us a few more.  The authors signed by their stories, and the collection itself is really worth sitting down with.

“The alternating currents of horror and fantasy that course through this volume ensure that readers of several genre tastes will find stories to their liking.” – Publishers Weekly

  • Set of the Ruby’s Song series:  The Creative Fire and The Diamond Deep. Signed by Brenda Cooper.

Rubys Song covers

“An intriguing protagonist, a well thought out setting, and… a fascinating story. I most definitely want to read the second volume of Ruby’s Song.” – SF Signal

Brenda Cooper is one of the authors offering a critique of your manuscript over on eBay.  It’s cool of her to do that, and even cooler that she kicked these books into the fundraiser, for anyone to grab by donating over at the Team Page.

  • Auction: Set of the Ruby’s Song series:  The Creative Fire and The Diamond Deep. Signed by Brenda Cooper.

Rubys Song Standing

Since Brenda was so generous, we were able to throw one set up as an auction.  Head over and bid if you need to be sure you get it.

Breach Zone standing

Hopefully Myke is recovering well from the incident with the straight razor.  He managed to send this ARC of his next book to us beforehand, though, so at least you can get that, even if he doesn’t make a full recovery.

“The best ride that military fantasy has to offer.” – Mark Lawrence, author of Emperor of Thorns

Breach Zone Signature

As an added  bonus, Myke included a second ARC and challenge coin for us to auction off.  The cool thing is that this book doesn’t come out until the end of January 2014, so even though the lottery winner won’t have it before then, whoever wins this auction will.

If you want to be that person, head over to the auction and bid.

Cry Of Justice standing

“An interesting, evocative tale. A powerful story of rebuilding and finding oneself when the world has gone topsy-turvy. Brutal and harsh at times, Pratt creates a real, hard, dirty world that is somehow still fantastical and full of magic and mystery.” – Front Street

Memory of Light 1

This beautiful, lettered edition of A Memory of Light was given to us by Brandon Sanderson.  It’s still unopened, and it’s looming over everyone in the office.

If you want to get your hands on it, we’ve got it up for auction over here.

  • Set of  the Wool Series.  Each book signed by Hugh Howey.

Wool standing

Wool was originally released as a series of novellas (its sequel, Shift, was released the same way). Here it is in its five separate volumes, each one signed by author Hugh Howey. Technically, this is a cool ARC of the Wool Omnibus.  It was actually donated by Dubray Books, then mailed to Hugh Howey to sign and mail along to us, so that’s extra cool.

“This story is terrific. I was completely immersed, watching Howey slowly paint a picture of a society gone wrong through the eyes and discovery of some truly compelling characters.” – Boing Boing

Redwood lying

“Murder, magic, and the transformative power of music are just a few of the things touched on in this vivid historical fantasy novel about two dreamers, an Irish-Seminole man and a hoodoo queen, who leave their backwoods Georgia home for the bright lights of Chicago at the beginning of the 20th century.” – Locus

  • Auction: Dust jacket and doodled rough draft page of upcoming Mirror Sight of the Green Rider series.  Signed by Kristen Britain.

Kristens Manuscript Signature

This is really cool.  Kristen’s novel, Mirror Sight, won’t be out until May 2014, but she’s donated a signed dust jacket, as well as a page of her hand-written draft.  We’re auctioning it off, in the hopes that someone who really loves these books gets it.

If you’d like to bid on it, head over here and do so.

  • Set of The Shadow Campaigns: The Thousand Names and an ARC of The Forbidden Library. Signed by Django Wexler.

Wexler Set standing

The Forbidden Library will be published in April 2014, so whoever is lucky enough to win this one in the lottery will get a nice early read.

“There’s been some serious buzz building for this book, and that buzz should only grow once people get their hands on it. …[The Thousand Names is] sure to hit the spot for fans of military-themed epic fantasy.” – Tor.com

  • Set of Miserere: An Autumn Tale and Manifesto: UF anthology. Signed by Teresa Frohock.

Frohock Set standing

“Teresa Frohock’s debut novel, Miserere: An Autumn Tale, is one of the most grossly under-read novels of the last few years…. Filled with show me now and tell me later prose, it was one of the finest debuts of 2011 and remains a novel that I remember details from nearly three years later.” – Tor.com

  • Limited edition copy of Lest our Passage Be Forgotten & Other Stories.  Signed by Bradley P. Beaulieu.

Beaulieu Lest Our - standing

Bradley Beaulieu is a fellow Wisconsinite, and recently also became a DAW author. Plus, he’s a regular contributor to Worldbuilders, including both a tuckerization and critique up for auction right now.

When he sent this book, which is limited edition with only 100 copies in print, we were only too happy to accept.  And because we love you, it’s in the lottery, for anyone who donates on the Team Page to win.

  • Limited edition set of  The Lays of Anuskaya novels: The Winds of Khalakovo, The Straits of Galahesh, and The Flames of Shadam Khoreh.  Signed by Bradley P. Beaulieu.

Lays of Anuskya standing

All three of these are also limited editions, with only 100 printed, again generously sent by Bradley Beaulieu, and again in the lottery.

  • Auction: UK edition of The Great Bazaar and Brayan’s Gold. Signed by Peter V. Brett.

Great Bazaar Standing

Peter V. Brett has also been a big contributor to Worldbuilders for years, even before he agreed to shave Myke Cole’s head.  A few years before she started working here, Amanda won a first edition copy of his first novel from the lottery.

This is extra cool, because it’s a collection of two different novellas Peter had published by Subterranean Press, both of which are sold out now. This edition was published in the UK.  It’s not exactly easy to grab in the states, so we’ve put it up for auction. Head over and bid if it tickles your fancy…

  • Set of The Demon Cycle novels: The Warded Man, The Desert Spear, and Daylight War.  Signed by Peter V Brett.

Demon Cycle standing

For those of you who haven’t read Peter’s books, we think you should.  We’re putting the full set of his novels into the lottery.  Warded Man and Daylight War are both first editions.

To boot, Warded Man has both its original dust jacket, and the new one they printed so it would match the rest of the novels.  They did the same thing with Name of the Wind, so you know all the cool authors are doing it.

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Heads up: all of the auctions for cameos and critiques are ending this Sunday, so make sure to go over to our eBay page to keep an eye on them.

Keep up with the fundraiser on the blog, and get details about how to win thousands of lovely books donated by authors and publishers.

Want to see what sorts of things you can win in the lottery?  Head over to the Lottery Library page to see everything we’ve posted so far.

Posted in Worldbuilders 2013 | By Amanda7 Responses

Delicious Geekery – October 2013

Back in August, we tried something a little new for Worldbuilders. Kevin Hearne and several of his anthology-mates sent us some signed copies of their carnival-steampunk collection, aptly named Carniepunk.

The books were signed by multiple authors, and rather than save them for our end-of-the-year Worldbuilders extraviganza, we decided to throw them up in our online store. We doubled the cover price because they were signed by some cool authors and because all the money goes to charity

… and despite that, the books sold out in just a couple of hours.

Since people were obviously excited about the idea, we’ve decided to make a monthly habit of bringing you some new signed books in The Tinker’s Packs:

Since this is our first month, I tapped a few of my author friends. And, because they’re all awesome people, they jumped right in.

The first to agree was Brandon Sanderson.  His book Steelheart came out a few weeks ago. It’s the first in a new series…

1-Sanderson

Look at it, looming over you like it can write faster than you or something…

Sanderson Signature

Not to mention the fact that his signature is beautiful and flowing and doesn’t at all look like a 4 year old stole a pen from you…

I got a chance to read an ARC of this and loved it even before it went through final edits. My blurb on the back says, “Unfortunately for my ego, Steelheart is another win for Sanderson, proving that he’s not a brilliant writer of epic fantasy, he’s simply a brilliant writer. Period.”

If you want to know more about what I thought, you can check out my goodreads review here.

Or you could just jump right over to the Tinker’s packs and buy it.

These are signed first printings, and we’ve only got ten of them. So, fair warning, they’re bound to go quickly.

And remember, all the money we make in the Tinker’s Packs goes to Worldbuilders, helping Heifer International do awesome things all over the world.

Sustainable Community Development Project for Chitwan, Nawalparasi and Palpa (22-0531-23)

Our second set of books comes from my long-time friend Nnedi Okorafor. She and I go way back to the Writers of the Future Volume 18 in 2002, where we were both bright-eyed, bushy-tailed, newbie writers.

Me-and-Nnedi-730772

Awww… look at me, all young and thin and tiny-bearded.

Both Nnedi and I have both come a long way since then. Her book Zahrah the Windseeker won the Wole Soyinka Prize for Literature in Africa. And in 2011 Who Fears Death won the 2011 World Fantasy Award for Best Novel.

Her newest book Kabu Kabu just hit the shelves, and she’s been nice enough to send us some copies hot off the press.

Nnedi Signature

In addition to signing, she’s gone the extra mile and decorated them too….

1-photo

As you can see, each of these is signed, dated, and has it’s own individual doodle along the top and bottom of the book. She sent along 10 of these, and we’re putting them up in the store for you.

Fair warning: There’s only nine left because I just bought one. I haven’t read this one yet.

Last we have a lovely donation from Scott Lynch (who I’m doing an event with soon in Lond0n).

It’s the third book in the Gentleman Bastard series: The Republic of Thieves…

Lynch Cover

I’m a huge fan of the first two books in the series, and recently wrote a review of The Lies of Locke Lamora on Goodreads that was so gushy with love that his publisher contacted me to ask if they could use it as promo copy.

Scott went all out on copies he sent us, as you can see if you embiggen the below pictures.

1-Republic

Yeah, he’s a great guy. Because of that, I’ll try not to resent the fact that his handwriting looks like a stylish font.

By strange coincidence, I just started reading my copy tonight over dinner. And honestly, I wish I were still reading it instead of writing a blog post. It’s one of *those* books.

They’re available for sale over here.

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We’ve also got one cool non-book thing we’re adding to the store. Something we’ve been saving for pre-christmass.

We’ve got the complete The Legend of Neil DVD series:

Legend of Neil DVDs

If you haven’t heard of Legend of Neil, well… not only do you lose some geek points, but you’re missing out on some of the best geek humor out there.

I’m not just a fan of the show, I bought the t-shirt. (Several copies of the t-shirt, actually.)

patrick rothfuss- Murder shirt

(Note: This is not the best shirt to go through airport security in.)

The series was written and directed by the inestimable Sandeep Parikh who agreed to let us sell the DVD to help raise money for Worldbuilders.

We’ve got some regular DVD’s and some signed by Sandeep, writer/actor Tony Janning, and geek glitterati princess Felicia Day.

We’ve got the DVDs and the posters available for sale individually, or you can buy them together at a discounted price.

We’ve only got a limited number of these, especially the signed ones. Fair warning.

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And finally, a piece of news:

The Lauren Zurchin Fantasy Calendar just came back from the printers. That means as of today, we’re no longer doing pre-orders. If you buy one, we’ll be shipping it out to you straightaway.

oliver-updated

The same is true if you’re buying a couple calendars in a combo packs to get a discount. We’re shipping those out immediately too.

So… yeah. There you go folks. Plenty of geek swag you can add to your vasty horde or use to get a jump on your  holiday shopping.

Have fun,

pat

Posted in a billion links, recommendations, The Tinker's Packs, Things I Like, Worldbuilders | By Pat19 Responses

2014 Calendars – Fantasy and Philantropy

So for the last couple of years, Worldbuidlers has put out a calendar to help raise money for charity.

This year, we decided to up our game and put out TWO calendars:

The first one we put together with help from Heifer International itself to showcase the good work they do all over the world:

Cover

The second is filled with joyful geekery, featuring a bunch of cool fantasy authors… and me.

LZ Cover

Right now, both of these calendars are up for sale in our online store, The Tinker’s Packs.

If you want, you could hop over right now and buy them. But if you’d like more details first….

  • The Heifer Calendar:

One of the things that’s always bothered me about charity fundraisers is that they frequently center around guilt and pity.

We’ve all seen the TV commercials. They show you starving, desperate children and say, “For the price of a cup of coffee, you can feed this child. Not even fancy coffee. We’re talking shitty truck-stop coffee with powdered creamer in it. Not that you would ever drink that. Today you had a half-decaf mocha with blueberry syrup and extra whip that cost you six bucks, you fat, disgusting American bastard.”

I’m paraphrasing, of course. But you know what I’m talking about. You see one of those commercials and if you have any empathy at all… well… it’s just crushing. Whenever I saw one, it always made me feel helpless and hopeless.

The first time I ever saw something different was Sarah Mclachlan’s video, World On Fire. Way back in 2004.

The premise for the video was this: They took the $150,000 a video normally costs, and put that money toward different charitable causes instead.

After all these years, I still remember one moment in the video where they said they’d helped send kids to school. Then they showed a picture of this little girl sitting in a classroom. And she was *so* fucking happy to be going to school and learning things. She was beaming with joy.

A screw it, I’ll just post the video here so you can see it yourself if you want….

The part I’m talking about is right at the 1 minute mark.

I remember watching that video, and thinking “This. Is. Awesome. What Sarah McLachlin has done here is Awesome.”

Then, after a moment, I remember thinking, “I want to be awesome too.”

What’s my point? Here’s my point.

When we decided to put together our own Heifer International themed calendar, that’s the feeling I wanted to replicate. I didn’t want people to feel guilty or sad or depressed at the state of the world.

I wanted you to look at this calendar and think: This is Awesome. What Heifer is doing is Awesome.

So our calendar is full of stories of people that Heifer has helped over the years. People who got a little help, then used those resources to improve their lives and the lives of those around them.

Stuff like this:

After working on their own for 21 years, the women in Azacualpa village saw things begin to change in 2005 when 22 families received heifers from Heifer International.

Four years later, in 2009, they received chickens and completed two rounds of Passing on the Gift, sharing chickens with other families in their community. Seeing the positive results from these first two projects, the women wanted to try something a bit more ambitious.

Cashew

“We wanted something more to do to generate more income,” said Maria Elsa (bottom left, with her husband and grandchildren). From this, the Southern Cashew Enterprise Association was born, with Maria serving as president.

Heifer provided the materials and hired builders to construct the storage rooms and ovens for this cashew enterprise. They also provided 200 cashew tree seedlings.

In 2012, a drought destroyed most of the area’s corn harvest. The cashew business, however, along with the ability to sell eggs and milk from their livestock, still provided income for the families in Maria’s village.

Maria gets almost four gallons of milk a day; she uses one gallon for her family and sells the rest.

Victoriano Gonzalez, Maria’s husband, said, “I never expected to see a cow in my yard and now we have four.” While the women work, their husbands have taken over more of the household chores.

“Now our husbands bring us food while we are working,” Maria said.

 This! This is what it’s all about. Heifer helps people, then those people help themselves. Then they help *other* people help themselves.

And you *don’t* have to shell out 60 cents a day, every day, forever, just to keep some poor kid from starving. When I did that, I felt like I was throwing stones into a well. I felt like it would never *really* make things better.

But here’s the thing: you send some money to Heifer, and they use it to help people make significant, long-term changes in their lives. Now when I donate money, it feels like I’m throwing a stone and Heifer is making sure that stone lands in *just* the right place so that it triggers an avalanche of awesome that will go on for decades, improving the lives of thousands of people.

If you buy this calendar, you are throwing a stone too. I hope that every day you look at it and think: That is awesome. And I am awesome too because I helped.

  • The Beyond Words Fantasy Calendar:

The second calendar we’re doing this year is fantasy-themed. But unlike last year’s calendar that focused on fantasy characters. This calendar focuses on the authors themselves.

For example, Brandon Sanderson:

Sanderson-watermark

Or Lauren Oliver:

oliver-updated(It’s worth it to embiggen this.)

Or Gregory Maquire:

Gregory-Maguire-promo

As you can see, the point wasn’t to dress up the authors as something out of their own books. (Gregory isn’t dressed up as someone from Wicked, for example.) This was a chance to… well… to do something fun and cool.

There are a lot of cool authors involved in this project, including:

If you’d like to see more of the pictures, you can peek at some more over in The Tinker’s Packs.

  • A special offer:

Now I can hear many of you out there howling, “How can I possibly choose between these two awesome calendars? I love Heifer, but I’m also a big geeky fan of [insert author name here]!!”

First off, rest assured that if you buy *either* of these calendars, money will go toward supporting Heifer International.

But really, why buy only one calendar? Wouldn’t it be nice to have a calendar in your office AND in your kitchen? A calendar at home *and* a calendar at work?

And what about Christmas presents? Think of those older relatives that are hard to shop for. Do you really want to give them another kitten calendar? A scented candle? No. You really don’t.

But if you give them a Heifer Calendar, you can explain to them how the money went to a *really* good cause. Then they get to feel awesome, too.

Calendar-2-forSo here’s the deal we’re offering. If you buy more than one calendar, we’ll give you a break on the price.

  • If you buy two calendars, you get $5 off.
  • If you buy three calendars, you get $10 off.

You can mix and match to your heart’s content. Here’s the link the the calendar combo deals on The Tinker’s Packs.

  • The fine details:

A few other things you might want to know:

1. If you buy the Beyond Words calendar, your money will support First Book as well as Worldbuilders.

2. The Beyond Words calendar isn’t *quite* back from the printer yet.

It should be finished in a week or so. And we’ll be shipping it soon after. That’s why it’s listed in the store as a pre-order.

So if you order a calendar bundle including Beyond Worlds, we’ll wait until *all* your calendars are ready before we mail them. It will take a little longer, but shipping is much cheaper that way.

3. Last year, a lot of people complained that while the calendar was attractive, it was hard to use.

The reason for this was that the re was little functional space for writing down doctor’s appointments, anniversaries, birthdays, etc.

We’ve fixed that this year. Both our calendars have nice, big colored boxes for you to write in.

  • Being in the Loop:

As you all know, I end up being really busy. That means I don’t always get to write blogs as quickly as I’d like.

This blog is a great example of that. I’ve been working on it for days.

But the people who follow The Tinker’s Packs on Facebook and Twitter heard about the calendars almost a week ago. That means they’ve already had a chance to place their orders, and in some cases have already received their calendars, giving them the chance to be very smug among their geek friends.

If you want to make sure you don’t miss stuff like this, it would be a good idea to follow those accounts. Especially as I don’t always blog about everything we put up in the store, and a lot of time, items are limited….

More cool things happening soon. Really soon. Stay tuned.

pat

P.S. If you’d like to sell some of our calendars in your store, or just buy in bulk, drop us a line at [email protected]

P.P.S. If you’d like to help out Worldbuilders in some other way, drop us a line at [email protected]

Posted in being awesome, Heifer International, The Tinker's Packs, Warm Fuzzies, Worldbuilders 2013 | By Pat24 Responses

Even Yet More Author Donated Books

This is a Worldbuilders Blog.

Well folks, this is it. The final blog full of books. The final day of the fundraiser.

On January 21st at midnight, Worldbuilders will be over for another year.

We’ve had a really good week. Just to give y’all some perspective, Worldbuilders has raised more money in the last four days than we did in our our entire first year.

As I write this, our total is a little more than $392,000. So it looks like $400K is well within our grasp. When we hit that, I’m personally donating an extra $100,000 to Heifer International.

Our $450K goal is looking a little distant, though. Which is a shame, as I was really hoping to have an excuse to write a piece of erotica with Amber Benson.

Still, I’ve been surprised before in the final day of the fundraiser….

Remember that if you donate before midnight CST on Jan 21st, you’ve got really amazingly good odds of winning some cool books, including the new ones we’re listing below….

*     *     *

Some of the coolest books Worldbuilders received this year came from the authors themselves. Today’s batch includes special editions, numbered editions, and a few copies of books that won’t even be hitting the shelves for a couple months.

Remember to thank these authors if you get the chance.  They’re cool people, and they’re helping out Worldbuilders from the goodness of their hearts.

This is a publisher’s copy of the limited edition from Subterranean Press. There were less than 600 of these made, and they’ve  been sold out for some time, but Paolo sent us one of his personal copies for the fundraiser.

“Not since William Gibson’s pioneering cyberpunk classic, Neuromancer (1984), has a first novel excited science fiction readers as much as Paolo Bacigalupi’s The Windup Girl…” – Washington Post

  • A set of The Dreamblood Series.  Signed by N.K. Jemisin.

“The world is so fully fleshed out that I could breathe its spices, while the story and characters are so much a part of the world that you could not pull this story or these people out and plug them into a different setting. Jemisin proves yet again that she is one of the important new writers in the sff scene.” – Kate Elliott

“Fuller rises to this challenge with great skill in this accomplished, atmospheric and thoughtful novel.” – Amazon.com

This won the National Book Award. And with quotes like this from Peter S. Beagle, you can see why….

Goblin Secrets is a knockout. It’s an original, owing absolutely nothing to Tolkien, or to any of his descendants, disciples or imitators.”  – Peter S. Beagle

“Red Moon is a serious, politically symbolic novel – a literary novel about lycanthropes. If George Orwell had imagined a future where the werewolf population had grown to the degree that they were colonized and drugged, this terrifying novel might be it.”  – John Irving

This one is a big deal, folks.  This is an ARC of a novel that doesn’t come out until May 2013.  He gets bonus points because he taught creative writing here at UWSP.

“Enchanting, fearsome faerie vistas and pinpoint character delineations make Galen’s absorbing quest one to savor and remember.” – Publishers Weekly

  • A set of Devil Said Bang and Aloha From Hell.  Signed by Richard Kadrey.

“Richard Kadrey’s Sandman Slim series is one of my favorite sets of fantasy books from the last few years…” – John Scalzi

“While carefully piecing together the ravaged scraps of his life in a quiet suburb of LA, [Asher Blaine] is arrested for murder […] When he turns to the people he trusted most, he discovers he must convince them not only of his sobriety, but of his innocence.” – Book summary

  • A set of The Fall of Ile-Rien novels.  Signed by Martha Wells.

“Wells…has created a finely detailed world that echoes with not just one culture and people but many. …A story on many levels, part high adventure, part personal story. Tremaine is not a scream and clutch heroine; she is a fascinating character with many facets. Check it out.” – Tulsa World

  • 3 copies of Let’s Pretend This Never Happened.  Signed by Jenny Lawson (aka The Blogess).

Amanda’s note: I’ll admit that I didn’t know who Jenny Lawson was a few months ago.  I’d vaguely heard the name “The Blogess” but hadn’t ever wandered over to check out her blog before.  Then Pat had her on Storyboard, and from then on, I was hooked.  She’s hilarious, and socially awkward in all the ways geeks like us can relate to.

We have 3 different copies of this book – two different paperbacks, and a CD audiobook, read by Jenny.  Each one will be put into the lottery as its own prize, and believe me: you won’t be disappointed.  Especially if you enjoy the F-word and stories about taxidermy.

  • A set of The Wild Side, Tales for the Dead of WinterCrimes by Moonlight, and Murder and Mayhem in Muskego.  All signed by Dana Cameron.

Dana sent over a bunch of anthologies she’s been featured in, and signed the title page of each of her stories.  It’s such a cool urban fantasy pack that we figured someone would appreciate having all four.

“This is a very good book, extremely engrossing and entertaining, including a couple of remarkable highlights of superior quality when compared with more celebrated anthologies.” – SF Site, about The Wild Side.

Here is a book that isn’t released until March.   Liesel was kind enough to send over some ARCs, so if you win one, you can read it before your friends do, then taunt them with the fact.

“Urban fantasy, steampunk, and paranormal romance: if you want them, you’ve got them in this charged debut.” – Library Journal

Another ARC, and this one doesn’t even come out until April.

“Promise of Blood is a hugely promising debut. Guns, swords, and magic together? What more could you want? How about tense action, memorable characters, rising stakes, and cool, cool magic? Not only the finest flintlock fantasy I’ve read, but also the most fun. Brian McClellan is the real thing.” – Brent Weeks

“Wholly immersive and enchanting…J.G. McKenney has written a gem.” HopelessBibliophile.com

Amanda’s note: It’s also worth noting that J.G. McKenney offers a free novel study unit for Eon’s Door on his website for middle school teachers, which makes him extra cool in my book.


“All writers believe in the magic of books; Jim Hines has created a system where that magic becomes real, usable, and very definitely not always safe.” – Tanya Huff

Amanda’s note: If that blurb isn’t reason enough to love Jim Hines, you may want to check out what he, Pat, and a bunch of our favorite authors did at ConFusion for Jim’s fundraiser.

Yeah.  You can never un-see that.  You’re welcome.

“[An] enjoyable romp […] satisfying to a wide range of middle school readers.” – Publishers Weekly

“For someone who likes reading historical fiction with an intent to learn a little while being entertained perhaps this review will encourage you to give it a try. The author is articulate, imaginative and I hope to see her write more.” – Amazon.com

  • 3 copies of Strangeness in the Proportion.  Signed by Joshua Alan Doetsch.  With toe tag bookmarks.

“Joshua Alan invites readers to the outer edge of surrealism where horror, mythology, stand-up, and Mother Angelica won’t agree to meet, but metabolize in a fantastical and satisfying gumbo. You don’t have a hair on your rumpus if you’re not hipwaggin’ it to be the first in line for the next ladleful.” – Joanna Beth Tweedy

Oathbreaker, Book 1: The Knight’s Tale … is a riveting debut fantasy from an author who knows what fantasy fans love (he wrote adventures for TSR, after all) – visceral prose; logically sound and creative world-building; and fascinating characters that do not follow genre conventions..” – The New Podler Review

“A new star is rising in the fantasy firmament…teems with magic and spine-chilling amounts of skullduggery.” – Dave Duncan

Some of you have been waiting a long time for this one.  There were only 1000 of these made, so we were excited when Brandon sent it, and we’re tossing it into the lottery where anyone who donates can win it.

“Reality and illusion, sanity and insanity, are but subjective labels in this thought-provoking foray into a world where ‘hallucinations’ abound like the Biblical demons the title evokes… The engaging if madcap events of this outre narrative unobtrusively prompt the reader to reflect on the nature of reality.” – Publishers Weekly

 *     *     *

And that’s it.  Our last blog of the fundraiser.  You’ve seen the books, DVDs, CDs, and comics that will be in the lottery, and you have the chance to win just by donating by January 21st at 11:59pm CST.

If you’d like to donate, head over to the Worldbuilders Team Page.

There are a couple of auctions left, including the Favor from Pat.  Check out our current auctions over here.

If you want to see the other items that have been donated to Worldbuilders, or learn more about the fundraiser itself, you can head over to our main page.

Posted in Worldbuilders 2012 | By Pat30 Responses

More Signed Books from Amazing Authors

Heya everybody. No long preamble today, just a picture from one of Heifer International’s projects.

This is Gabriela. She lives in Bolivia, and the fruit she’s holding is a cacao pod.

I thought I’d mention that Heifer doesn’t just give out chickens to people who need eggs. They also help farmers increase crop yields through sustainable agriculture. Sometimes that means teaching folks in developing countries about new farming techniques. Other times they might bring in a hive of honeybees to help pollinate crops. (And produce honey, of course.)

Other times they might give them a goat. Why? Well, in addition to producing milk, a goat produces… well, let’s just call it “organic fertilizer.” And not to put too fine a point on it, but that shit is really important if you’re a farmer.

This is what your money does when you donate to Heifer International on the Worldbuilders team page. It doesn’t just feed a kid for a week, or a month. It improves a family’s life forever. It makes a lasting impact in an entire community.

Oh yeah, if you donate, your name also goes into the lottery so you have the chance to win thousands of books.

Have we mentioned that? I’m pretty sure we’ve mentioned that….

“A supporting cast of quirky characters fully rendered in quick strokes will hold readers as surely as the complex resolution in this cozy on the bleeding edge of noir.” – Booklist

  • Auction: A first edition set of Shakespeare’s ChampionShakespeare’s Christmas, and Shakespeare’s Trollop.  All signed by Charlaine Harris.

These are beautiful, first edition copies of each of these books, AND they’re signed.  You could buy each of these online somewhere, but they’d cost you $150 a pop.

Charlaine was generous enough to take these out of her personal library, and we’re auctioning them off here.

  • Auction: A first edition set of A Fool and His Honey, Dead Over Heels, and Three Bedrooms, One Corpse.  All signed by Charlaine Harris

“Harris draws the guilty and the innocent into an engrossing tale while inventing a heroine as capable and potentially complex as P. D. James’s Cordelia Gray.” – Publishers Weekly

These are all first editions, too.  You can bid on the auction over here.

“With an all-new Sookie Stackhouse story and twelve other original tales, editors Charlaine Harris and Toni L. P. Kelner bring together a stellar collection of tour guides who offer vacations that are frightening, funny, and touching for the fanged, the furry, the demonic, and the grotesque.” – Sidhe Vicious Reviews

We’re putting one of these in the lottery. And one up for auction. Click here to bid.

“A fun read, a satisfying Sookie fix, and a good resource…Consider The Sookie Stackhouse Companion a fun addition to your Sookie library.” – Tor.com

Charlaine sent us two copies of this as well. So one will go into the lottery, and you can bid on the other one over here.

  • A set of Dead in the Family, Dead Reckoning, and Deadlocked. Signed by Charlaine Harris.

I’m sure you guys know about True Blood, right? Well these are the books the series is based on. Signed by the Charlaine and up for grabs in the lottery to anyone who donates on to Heifer International on the Worldbuilders Team Page.

“The anthologies edited by Charlaine Harris and Toni L.P. Kelner combine top authors from many different genres with a specific paranormal theme. This time the theme was school and it produced some unique and interesting stories.” – BadAss Book Reviews

“Beaulieu skillfully juggles elements borrowed from familiar cultures (primarily Russian and Bedouin) as well as telepathy, airborne ships, and magical gems.” – Publishers Weekly

  • Auction: Doodled manuscript and First Edition Seawitch. Both Signed by Kat Richardson.

(Click to embiggen the awesome)

This is something you don’t see very often these days. An actual paper manuscript of a book. A lot of publishers are going digital these days.

This manuscript includes some line edits, notes in the margins, and even a geographically-questionable doodle of Rhode Island (among other doodles). Kat was even kind enough to send along the completed novel, so you can read it more easily.

To bid on the awesome, click here.

Chris contacted us to donate a copy of his book.  He said he actually found us because his audio book is read by the same guy who reads Name of the Wind and Wise Man’s FearNick Podehl.

We’ve got one copy of the book that we’re putting in the auction. And we have a second copy he sent along with a USB drive containing the audiobook. So we’re auctioning that one off.

“Hair-raising escapes, flashy sword fights, and faithful friendship complete the formula for good old-fashioned escapist fun.” – Publishers Weekly

Mary has been my partner in crime a few times. She’s been on Storyboard a couple of times and done an interview with me here on the blog.

What’s more, she’s one of the people playing True Dungeon with us at GenCon. (Hint, each of those links goes to an auction, if you want to come play with us….)

“Simply enchanting, and another great advance in an already impressive literary career. You’re going to love this.” – John Scalzi

Fourteen copies of the book will go into the lottery. But for those of you who simply *MUST* have one, we’re auctioning one off, too.

Stormdancer is Jay’s Debut novel. It’s met with some good praise, including a starred review in Publisher’s Weekly. But if you click on the picture above, you’ll be able to read the blurb that I gave it.

Ah hell, let’s just zoom in….

Three copies of this will go into the lottery.

The fourth, along with the hilariously sweet The Little Stormdancer book Jay printed himself as a promo, is going up for auction.

  • Auction: Rejection, Romance & Royalties.  Signed by Laura Resnick.

This is an awesome book for folks interested in writing romance, written by an author who has been through it.  We’re auctioning it since it could be extremely helpful for someone who is serious about getting into the business.

Click here if you’re that person.

I’ll be completely honest with you folks. When this book showed up, I honestly thought that this book was about how to cook with… well…. real poo.

I continued to think that until just a couple days ago, when I saw Amanda flipping through the book saying, “These are some really good recipes….”

Full of fatherly concern, I had sat down to have a talk with her. Only then did I learn that Poo is the name of the Taiwanese cook who wrote the cookbook.

Fun fact:  This book won “Oddest Book Title of the Year” last year.  I wonder why…

One copy will be in the lottery. The other copy with a “I cooked with POO and I liked it” apron are going into an auction.

The cover alone makes this book worth it.  Three people in the office now want to read it based on the cover.  But if that’s not enough for you…

“All told, Plaguewalker is one of the best novels I’ve read in years.” – Paul McComas

  • The Doppelganger novels and a signed ARC of A Natural History of Dragons. Signed by Marie Brennan.  

 

Something cool here. The ARC is for of A Natural History of Dragons, which isn’t even on the shelves yet. If you win this in the lottery, you can read it before your friends do, then mock them unmercifully.

“Lady Trent is the Jane Goodall of dragonkind, and I’m glad she’s finally sharing her story with the world. From her first sparkling encounter to her discoveries in Vystrana, her memoir is sure to inspire the next generation of naturalists and dragon aficionados. This book makes me want to dissect something. In a good way.” —Jim C. Hines, author of Libriomancer

“A complex tale of magic and destiny that won’t disappoint its readers.” – Terry Brooks

  • A set of Mirages, Too Late to Call Texas, Fractal Despondency, and Butterfly Potion.  All signed by Trent Zelazny.

Trent Zelazny is the son of the late, great Roger Zelazny. He was great to the fundraiser this year, by donating a set of his novels and some of his dad’s classic books as well.

“A powerful and good writer…someone who’s been through hell and come out, I hope, the other side.” –Neil Gaiman

If you read fantasy, you really shouldn’t need us to explain to you who Zelazny is. He’s one of the greats.

This is a first edition copy of Roadmarks in gorgeous condition, donated by his son.

We’re auctioning it off, so you can click here to bid.

  • Auction: First edition of The Gathering Storm. With extras. Signed by Brandon Sanderson.

This prize comes from a few different places, but any Wheel of Time fan would be lucky to have all of it.

Brandon sent us the signed, first edition copy of The Gathering Storm. Badali sent us an Asha’man Dragon pin and a Dedicated Sword Pin. And the folks over at Team Jordan donated a shirt of your choice from Taveren Tees.

We’re auctioning the whole lot off so it ends up in the hands of a true fan.

To bid, head over here.

*     *     *

Fair warning time: Worldbuilders is ending soon, so if you want in on the lottery make sure to make your donation on the Worldbuilders Team Page. For every $10 you pitch in, you get another chance to win thousands of books and DVD’s.

There were tons of auctions in this blog, and we have even more running. You can view all of them on our current auctions over here.

If you want to see the other items that have been donated to Worldbuilders, or learn more about the fundraiser itself, you can head over to our main page.

Posted in Worldbuilders 2012 | By Pat13 Responses
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