Tag Archives: Wesley Chu

Creative Collaborations and Odd Opportunities for Immortality

So, it’s been an interesting couple days….

On Tuesday the news broke that Lin-Manuel Miranda has officially signed on to help develop my books into movies and television.

This news has been a long time coming, and it hasn’t been easy to keep under my hat.

I’ve already done a Q&A about it over on my twitch stream, and I’ll write about it here in the blog in the future. But for now just let me say that my creative crush on Lin is of Whedonian proportions. I’m about as excited as a human being can possibly be.

miranda-rothfuss(This excited. Plus ten.)

And if that weren’t enough to make this my best week ever, my books also got passing mentions from the Vlogbrothers and Nightvale. Which is a confluence of events that seems to imply I have gained a fairy godmother or access to a genie. It’s odd, and feels a little bit like maybe god checked his ledgers, realized that someone had done the karmic equivalent of running over my cat, and is desperately trying to balance things out before the new year for tax reasons.

Anyway. It’s been a good week. And that’s not even taking into consideration that Worldbuilders raised (and then matched) another quarter million dollars this week. Which means as of right now, we’ve raised more than $1,100,000 for Heifer International.

That’s enough money to give 9000 families goats, along with the education, training, and tools to care for them.

Buwamdelema Village, Mbale District, Eastern Region, Uganda Sandra Nabwire, 16 years old, and Edward Wanyama, 4 years old, feed the family goat fodder at their home in Buwandelema village on Friday May 20, 2011.

Goats are awesome, because they’re hardy, easy to care for, and produce a gallon of milk a day. That milk is a valuable source of protein and calcium for children, and the excess milk is easily sold to provide household income so families can pay for school fees, clothes, and medicine.

You see, in most of the world, a goat isn’t just a source of food, it’s a small business. But more importantly, it gives birth to other small businesses.

So far, Worldbuilders has raised enough to give 55,000 families flocks of chickens ($20.) Enough to provide 3,600 communities with clean water ($300.)

And we’re not done. We still have some time left. And we have some cool new announcements today.

  • We still have matching money!

Once we hit $1,000,000, a lot of people thought that we were out of matching money.

We’re not. We’ve used up $555,000 of the million dollars we have available for matching. So rest assured, when you donate, your money is still getting doubled.

  • Return of the Widget!

I’m delighted to announce the return of the probability calculator widget. Powered by math from the fabulous Vi Hart.

As you know. (Or at least I hope you know.) Every $10 you donate to Worldbuilders gets you a chance to win thousands of books and games from our prize lottery. This widget is updated with the most up-to-date numbers so you can tell what your odds are of winning something, depending on how much you donate.

  • Odd Opportunities for Immortality

As faithful readers of the blog know, earlier in the fundraiser, a handful of awesome authors offered up cameos in upcoming books.

We’ve done this for several years at Worldbuilders, and my only regret is that we’ve always auctioned them off. It brings in good money, but it makes me feel bad that only folks with a lot of money to splash around get a chance to get their names or faces in upcoming books.

So last week when a more authors came forward to offer us walk-on roles in their books, we decided to try something new, a little experiment, if you will.

We’re making separate pages for each of these new cameos, if you go in and donate there, you’re still eligible for everything in the regular fundraiser. Your donation will be doubled. You’re eligible for all the prizes in the lottery.

AND you’re eligible to win the guest star appearance that’s detailed on that page.

This way, you have a chance at immortality even if you’re not made of money.

I’m really excited to offer these up, folks. I’m huge fans of all the works listed here.

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It was recently announced that the awesome authors Cassandra Clare and Wesley Chu are co-writing a new trilogy featuring a fan-favorite character of Cassandra Clare’s, Magnus Bane. The book is out in November of 2017, and they’ve offered to name a character after one of our lovely supporters.

They were happy to let us put this in the lottery for anyone who donates via their page, so that’s exactly what we’ve done. The more you donate, the better your chances, but even if you only have 10 bucks to spare, there’s still a chance.

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Rat Queens have also stepped up to the plate. But this isn’t just going to be some little walk-on part. The fabulous Kurtis Wiebe is offering up the opportunity to be Killed by your favorite band of adventuring badasses: the Rat Queens themselves. They’ll draw you and your likeness in to the comic, and you’ll get super dead.

Don’t be a Gary. Donate to make the world a better place, and rest comfortably in the knowledge that every $10 you kick in on their team page, gets you a chance to get killed by Rat Queens.

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Or, if you’re more into the Sandman Slim novels, you could get killed to death in that.

If you donate on this team page Richard Kadrey will include you in the next Sandman Slim novel and kill you. What’s more, he’s promised to make it “as messy as possible.”

Those were his exact words.

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If you aren’t reading read Bitch Planet, you really should. I picked it up just last month, and it instantly become one of new favorites.

It imagines a world where women who don’t fit in with the patriarchal society’s standards for women are shipped away from earth and jailed on Bitch Planet for being “Non-Compliant.” That can involve anything from being a violent felon, to simply not speaking politely, using too much sarcasm, or being overweight.

This comic is smart, folks. It’s dark and sharp and full of clever humor. I love it with big love.

So I’m delighted to say that for every $10 you donate on their page will get you a chance to name an inmate and the infraction that caused them to be exiled. Writer Kelly Sue DeConnick and artist Valentine De Landro will work with you to put this character into their world.

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Matt Fraction is one of my top five comic writers of all time. And honestly? I think Sex Criminals is my favorite comic he’s currently working on.

And it’s hard for me. *ahem* Because it’s not exactly easy to go around recommending a comic called “Sex Criminals” to everyone you know.

The premise is this: In Sex Criminals, when Suzie and John have sex, time stops. Not in the cheesey way that people talk about sometimes. Literally, time stops. Then they do what any red-blooded American with sex superpowers would do: They rob banks.

Writer Matt Fraction and artist/maniac Chip Zdarsky assure you that, while very dirty, Sex Criminals is mostly sweet. And they’re offering you the chance to name your very own sex act in the series. Which is something I’m pretty sure everyone has wanted to do at some point in their lives. Or is it just me? (It can’t just be me, can it?)

Again, every $10 you donate on Team Brimpers gets you a chance for this.

  • Name Viari’s own personal intern in Acquisitions Inc

I talked to the folks at Acquisitions Inc, and they’re letting me raffle off the chance to name Viari’s own personal intern in a future game. You and I will work out your character’s name, as well as their character class. And then they’ll be an NPC in Acquisitions, Inc. They’ll fetch my coffee, update my day planner, and… well… probably die. Because… well… intern…

Roll with Viari over here if that sounds like a good time to you.

[Edit: Amanda hereOne more opportunity came through this morning after we shared the blog, so I’m throwing it in here because I KNOW you wanna see this.

  • Get your name and likeness in an issue of Revival

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Revival is a FANTASTIC comic set in rural Wisconsin after a day when the dead come back to life. The main character, Dana Cypress, has ongoing investigations into the phenomenon, and the series has been running monthly since July 2012.

Tim Seeley is the writer of he comic, and he and artist Mike Norton have agreed to put your name and/or likeness (whatever you prefer) into the comic. If you love Revival as much as I do, every $10 you contribute on their page puts your name in the hat.]

***

Thanks again for coming along with us on this adventure, folks. And do keep in mind that even if none of the new teams I just mentioned ring your bell, you can just go donate on the main page.

I really want to use up all of our matching money this year.

I’m hoping beyond all hope that we can hit $2,000,000.

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P.S. Our servers are getting hit kinda hard today. Because a now that we’re over a million bucks, we’re getting some media attention.

If you have trouble donating, please don’t give up. I know it’s frustrating. But please stick with it.

Posted in cool news, movie talk, Worldbuilders 2016 | By Pat26 Responses

A Boat, A Board, A Table, and Books

Hey there everybody,

This year’s fundraiser is going to be bigger and better than ever, and today’s blog includes four of the reasons why.

Rather than save our coolest things for last as we’ve occasionally done in the past, we’re launching out with big items that are all going into the lottery, which means for every $10 you donate on our fundraiser page you have a chance to win them and a ton of other prizes.

This first one is something new to the fundraiser. We’ve never put anything like it in the lottery before…

  • A cabin for 2 on the 2017 JoCo Cruise

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JoCo Cruise 2017 is a cruise ship full of music, comedy, and general nerdery. The 2017 cruise departs from San Diego, CA on Saturday, March 4th for a 7-night adventure along the Sea of Cortez and will return on Saturday, March 11.

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I’ve gone on the JoCo Cruise for two years in a row now, and 2017 will be my third trip out. I didn’t know if I’d like going on a cruise, because honestly? I’m a bit of a cave dweller. But despite my initial reservations, I have to say, I absolutely love it. It’s a great atmosphere, and this year’s cruise will be the first time the geeks are taking over the entire cruise ship.

It’s the best time. I’ve had more genuine interactions with fans and other geeks on the boat than I can hope to have at a convention.

So I’m delighted to announce that JoCo Cruise has donated a balcony cabin on the boat to Worldbuilders, and we’re putting it in the lottery where anyone who donates at least $10 can win it.

You’ll still need to pay for your own flights to and from the cruise, but once you’re on the boat you’re pretty much golden. There’s free food and drinks (with some options you’d have to pay for), concerts, events, panels, and so, so much more.

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(Like the 24 hour gaming room, for example)

The JoCo Cruise folks made a handy-dandy list for us of everything this does and doesn’t include, but the big thing is that every $10 you donate gets you another chance to win this awesome trip.

  • The Vanguard gaming table from Geek Chic

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The lovely folks over at Geek Chic have offered up one of their elegant gaming tables for this year’s Fundraiser.

If this table looks a little familiar, it might be because you’ve drooled over one at a convention like GenCon or PAX. Or maybe us playing on one in an episode of TableTop (where I crushed all who opposed me.)

Geek Chic makes gorgeous stuff. This table has an inset game field, so not only will your dice not roll onto the floor, but the replaceable top means you can cover up a partially finished game and still have a functional table you can use for eating dinner or doing work.

The table also has a grooved rail system that allows you to add on things like cup holders, trays, and dice containers onto the *side* of the table without cluttering up your game or risking spills.

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This table is one of the newer designs from Geek Chic: the Standard Vanguard. There’s a lot more information about it over on their website. (Click that link.)

But wait, it gets better.

If you win this prize and want to customize your Vanguard, adding accessories or picking fancier woods, Geek Chic will give you the $2500 value of this table as credit toward your new configuration or anything else you’d like to buy from Geek Chic. Including a different table.

Even international donors have a chance of winning this, but we’ll coordinate with the winner after the fact, since international shipping can be tricky on something this large.

Remember, you get a chance to win it for every $10 you donate to the fundraiser and select games as something you’re interested in winning.

  • A Beautiful Tak Set from Wyrmwood

Some of you might recognize the Wyrmwood’s handiwork from the recent Tak kickstarter, where they made Devi’s Box and Devi’s Board.

Well this year for Worldbuilders, they made us something special….

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Seriously. Look at it. It’s gorgeous.

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It’s a handmade, one-of-a-kind Tak set, constructed with Kingwood, African Blackwood. (All ethically sourced.) The board has solid silver stringing and mother-of-pearl inlay. If they were selling them, the retail cost of this board would be around $5,000.

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But they’re not selling them. Even I don’t have one. This item is just available for some lucky geek to win if they donate to Worldbuilders.

  • Books From Subterranean Press

For those of you who love books more than games, the rest of the blog contains gorgeous limited-edition books from Subterranean Press. Sub Press has been around since the beginning of Worldbuilders, and all but one of their donations is going into the lottery.

All told, there’s over 200 books going into the lottery today. Many of them signed, numbered, or otherwise rare.

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Subterranean Press always goes the extra mile to make truly beautiful books, so we love being able to show them off. They work hard to make their books incredibly high quality, and they don’t miss the mark.

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There’s more than just novels going in, too. Both of these books are collections of stories from some of the best authors in their genre. Confessions is completely sold out, and the only place left to get a copy is here in the lottery.

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Each of these limited edition books was limited to 1,000 numbered copies, so you’re getting a real rarity in them.

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John Scalzi’s collection of posts from his blog, Whatever, is a deep dark look into the things on his mind over the time between 2008 and 2012, which is both horrifying and hilarious.

Amityville Horrible is a wonderful horror story for more traditional reasons: it’s full of ghosts, necromancy, werewolves, and murder. It was limited to 1500 numbered copies which are all leather-bound and gorgeous.

  • Auction: One of every book published by Subterranean Press in 2016.

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This is one of the coolest things Subterranean has been doing for a while now, which is a collection of every single book they’ve published in the last year. It includes some of the books already featured in the fundraiser, plus a bunch more, including some that haven’t come out yet.

There are 38 beautiful books in this bundle. To add some serious class to your bookshelf, you can bid on this auction right here.

* * *

Happy first day of the fundraiser, folks. Remember that I’ll only be posting a few times throughout the fundraiser, but Worldbuilders will be updating their website every day with new items in the lottery, auctions, and stretch goals.

Let’s show Heifer International what we can do with $1 million in matching money.

Posted in Worldbuilders 2016 | By Pat15 Responses

D&D, Swords from Westeros, and My Favorite Video of the Fundraiser….

We have been getting a lot of messages and comments as we approach the end of the fundraiser, asking what people can do to help out and be involved, so we thought we’d share some ideas with you today:

You can bid on one of the many auctions that are running and get yourself something cool and collectible.

You can also buy cool stuff in the store, where all the proceeds go to Worldbuilders.

Or you can do what 7-year-old Charlotte did.

You have to watch that. Seriously. I demand that you watch it.

Charlotte has created her own page as a part of our Worldbuilders fundraiser, setting a goal of $500 to buy a heifer for a family that needs it. She’s also got the energy and go-get-em attitude to someday rule the world, so you might want to consider getting on her good side now by helping her out.

Several people have created their own pages as part of our fundraiser. There’s one for Nerdfighters. One for people who do NaNoWriMo. Some of them are offering their own stretch goals and their own prizes. (But they all are included in the main Worldbuilders lottery, and they all add to our total.)

I’m happy to see them all, but I hope I don’t hurt anyone’s feelings if I say that Charlotte’s page has made my day.

* * *

Today’s blog is full of auctions. There’s a great variety of things, so read all the way to the bottom and see if there’s anything that piques your interest…

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Your chance to have a seat at the gaming table in the third year of Author D&D. Join these literary masters at Confusion as they D&D it up. If you want to know what it’s like, they’ve filmed it for the last three years, which you can watch here in an epic playlist.

The game itself will be on January 17 2015, and there will be books, dice, and other supplies provided. This doesn’t include travel or accommodations, though, so if you’re already planning on going to ConFusion, it’s a great opportunity.

Bid on the chance over here.

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Mikey Neumann is more than a great game designer (though he is that too, having worked on Half-Life 2, Brothers in Arms, and Borderlands), he’s also a fabulous public speaker, champion whist player, and a writer to boot.

This year, he was kind enough to write a short story just for us, and read it for us in a YouTube video you can see over here. This is the exact copy he was reading from in that video, and Mikey was nice enough to sign it and donate it for us to auction off.

If you’re interested, you can bid on it over here.

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These posters are designed by Steve Shell, an English and Theatre teacher from North Carolina. Each print features a period map of the setting of the text with a cutout of an iconic image or shape from the story and a cutout showing a special selection of text from the novel/poem/story.

There’s a full set of all 30 posters going into the lottery, and another one up for auction. Amanda’s totally bidding on this to give out to all of her friends who are English teachers.

If you want the auction, you can beat Amanda out over here.

Fabulous donations from Valyrian Steel

The folks over at Valyrian Steel started helping out with Worldbuilders last year, and this year they’ve stepped in to donate more of their officially licensed Game of Thrones replicas and memorabilia.

Nearly everything here is limited edition. Some of the items have as few as 500 available in the world, and a few of them are entirely sold out.

So if you, or someone you love, is a fan of Game of Thrones, read on….

  • Auction: The Hound’s Helm. Limited edition of 2,500.

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This is the helm of the Hound. Not only does it come with a display stand, but it’s also completely wearable.

The jaw opens and closes, and there’s silkscreened Clegane sigil on the stand, which shows that the folks at Valyrian Steel have a nice attention to detail.

If you want to be as badass as The Hound, bid over here.

  • Auction: Daenerys Bust. Limited edition of 2,000.

GOTDAENERYSBUST(I’m *not* going to make a bust joke. Here. Because I’m a professional. Mostly.)

Daenerys is one of the most loved characters in GOT, and this bust was made specifically to recall the closing scene of season 1.

To have the Mother of Dragons watch over you, bid here.

  • Auction: Tyrion Lannister Statue. Limited edition of 3,000.

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Everyone loves Tyrion, and here’s a limited edition statue they made of him before the second season of Game of Thrones. They asked for ideas of what to create a statue of, and were told that the moment Tyrion charges into the Battle of Blackwater would be awesome.

The producers even provided photographs that were taken during filming, expressly as sculpture reference for this piece.

Bid on it in all its coolness here.

  • Auction: Longclaw Damascus Steel Artist Proof. One of only 18.

Damascus Longclaw on Display

This is a real rarity here.

Not only is this a replica of John Snow’s blade, Longclaw, made of Damascus Steel. But this is one of the incredibly limited run of only 18 artists proofs that were made. Typically they were given to Very Important People, like George RR Martin, or folks who work on the show with HBO.

But the folks at Valyrian Steel have given us one as well, and we’re auctioning it off here for the hardcore fans. It even has the Night’s Watch Oath on the wooden plaque.

Want to be one of less than 20 people in the world with this blade, bid on it over here.

  • Auction: Ice Damascus Steel Artist Proof. One of only 18.

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The Stark family greatsword has a lot of history behind it, and plays an important role in Game of Thrones.

This is also one of 18 artist proofs, so we’ve put this one up for auction as well. The chance to grab this isn’t likely to come up again, so if you want it, you’ll need to bid on it here.

Stuff from Authors’ Desks

During our IndieGoGo fundraiser last summer, the Worldbuilders Team and I gave up a couple of precious and beloved things from our desks. We figured they might last until the final day of the fundraiser to sell out, but all 12 were gobbled up within the first couple of hours.

We all wrote careful notes to go with our items, explaining why we loved them so dearly, and shipped them out, happy to have raised some money for charity in return for a little bit of joy.

Fast forward to now, where a handful of authors who have helped with Worldbuilders are offering the same thing. This is a bit of an experiment for us. But I know as an aspiring author, I would have loved to have something from a pro-writer’s desk as my personal writing mojo. In fact, I’m considering bidding on some of these things in order to steal some of these other author’s powers….

Sherwood cat

This is a charming little cat figurine that Sherwood has kept on her desk for many many years. Since she was in the fifth grade, as a matter of fact.

This comes in a “Thanks for All You Do” velvet bag and a caligraphied note giving a little bit of history of the adorable cat. You can bid on it here.

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Jaime has been a big fan of comic books all her life, so her stuff from her desk has a definite theme: comics. Even the note she wrote explaining the gifts is on Superman stationery.

There’s her 2008 Comic Book Legal Defense Fund membership card, as well as some Superman post it notes. If you want to be half as cool as she is, you can bid on them here.

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Anne sent over a signed and inscribed copy of Written in Red to accompany Snack the Mini Moose. Apparently Snack has read the next book in Anne’s series and was really scared, so  they’re sending him along to someone who will take care of him. The note that comes with Snack was written by The Wolfgard.

According to The Wolfgard, “If you take good care of Snack, someday he will grow up to be Lunch.”

If you want to take care of Snack for Anne, you can bid on him over here.

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April also kicked in some signed copies of her books to go with her desk item. It’s fairly appropriate, since this piece of Victorian jewelry was a part o the what inspired the period and writing of this series of books from April.

If you want this little piece of coolness, bid on it here.

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Figment has been on Kristen’s desk since the 80s, when she picked him up from Walt Disney World. Back then, he was the mascot of Epcot, meant to be a manifestation of imagination, which Kristen loved.

He’s going to start sharing his magic with someone new, and if you want that to be you, you should bid on him here.

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Laura has been helping out with Worldbuilders for a long time in many ways. According to Laura, Deadline Cat “has seen me through numerous deadlines with minimal loss of sanity.”

I’m seriously considering jumping in on this one….

If you could maybe use a Deadline Cat, you can bid on him here.

  • Auction: Joe Ducie‘s Handmade Italian Quill.

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Joe (who many of you may remember better as Captain Joe) had a very fancy, handmade quill he thought he’d share with us. Apparently, he won it off of a Fremchman in Canada, and never managed to use it properly. The full details are in the note photoed above, which you can read if you click to embiggen.

If you’d like Joe’s saucy best, you can bid on his quill (hur hur) right over here.

(I would just like to say that Amanda wrote that last bit. For Shame, Amanda. Way to bring down the tone of the blog after I took the high road by avoiding making a bust joke earlier….)

  • Auction: Martha Wells‘s Invitation to Deeper Than Swords.

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Martha’s desk item is bonus cool, because it was all about the opening of the Texas A&M University Cushing Library’s exhibit Deeper Than Swords, which was about the work of George R.R. Martin.

It includes a packet of info and pictures from the exhibit, as well as the invitation itself, some postcards, and a cool sword letter opener. Martha wrote up a letter with the full details of the event (since she got two invitations, she used one and sent us the other).

If you want your own set of memorabilia, you can bid on it right here.

* * *

We hit Neil Gaiman’s stretch goal yesterday afternoon. He’ll be filming it shortly, but in the meantime, there are plenty of others you can watch to keep yourself entertained.

Me? It looks like I better start calling around to see if I can find some farmer who is willing to let me kiss his Llama…

pat

Posted in Worldbuilders 2014 | By Pat18 Responses

Even More Manuscript Critiques and Guest Appearances

Well folks, we’re in the last two weeks of Worldbuilders, and we’ve got a lot of things to show you before the end.

First off, at our last count, we’re already giving away more than 1,500 books in our prize lottery.

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A lot of those books are signed, limited edition, or otherwise rare. And we’re not even counting the books we’ll be announcing over the next couple weeks.

So remember that for every ten bucks you donate to Heifer International on our team page, you not only make the world a better place, but you get a chance to win these books and many more.

And now for today’s dose of awesome….

*     *     *

This year we’ve had a lot of professionals offering to read-and-critiques manuscripts for unpublished authors. Even more rare, we’ve had authors offering up cameo appearances in their books. We posted a blog full of them earlier in the fundraiser, and now we have some more.

As always, be sure to read each of the descriptions closely, since everyone is offering something a little different.

First the cameo appearances….

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Hugo-award winning author Mary Robinette Kowal will tuckerize your name into a forthcoming piece of fiction. What does this mean? It means that she will work your name into a story or novel depending on what your name is and which project it seems to fit best into. She’ll also send you a signed manuscript before publication.

If you want the joy of being in Mary’s work, head over here and bid.

  • Become part of a series about time travel by Wesley Chu.

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Find your place in science fiction immortality. Wesley Chu is pleased to offer one tuckerization in his upcoming series, Time Salvager, about a time traveler who jumps back in time to reclaim resources from more prosperous pasts.

Wesley Chu is the author of The Lives of Tao (Goodreads Choice Awards 2014 Finalist for Best Science Fiction) and The Deaths of Tao (Booklist and Shelf Awareness Starred Review). Time Salvager has been sold to Tor Books and Tor UK and is projected to release in 2015. All proceeds from the auction will benefit the 2013 Worldbuilders fundraiser.

To show that he’s such a cool guy, Wesley has stretch goals in place, making the character cooler (and more likely to survive) the more money it raises for us.

If you want to be a part of this series, be sure to go bid here.

And now the Read & Critiques….

Pat’s Note: Some of these auctions include feedback of your query letter and/or synopsis. I would like to say that I would have killed to get a professional’s opinion of those things back when I was trying to get published.

Well, maybe I wouldn’t have killed. But I would have maimed the hell out of someone.

Also, please only bid on these if your manuscript will be ready for critique in 2014.

  • A read and critique of the first 15,000 words of your manuscript, as well as your query letter and synopsis, by Cassie Alexander.

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Cassie Alexander is offering a read and critique of the first 15,000 words of someone’s novel. You’re welcome to include your query letter and synopsis on top of that word count.

She’ll be critiquing for plot, pacing, readability, character arcs, voice, how well the opening works, and give overall, general impressions of the story.  All critiques will be done in MSWord via track changes, and will be done in under a month.

Cassie Alexander is the author of the five book Edie Spence urban fantasy series, comprised of Nightshifted, Moonshifted, Shapeshifted, Deadshifted, and Bloodshifted, and has been published in Germany, France, and the Republic of Czech. She’s an experienced workshopper, having attended Viable Paradise and Clarion West, and frequently is a writing workshop professional at conventions she attends.

To bid on this awesome chance, head over here.

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Jaime Lee Moyer is offering a read and critique of the first 75 pages of your finished novel. While she won’t line edit for grammar, she will comment on plot, pacing, character arc, voice, how well the “hook” or opening works, how well the story sustains her interest, and give overall, general impressions of the story. Critique will be done in MSWord via track changes, but please use a readable font and double-space your work. The critique will be returned to you within three months, edit letters and deadlines allowing.

Jaime Lee Moyer is a speculative fiction writer, poet and recovering editor. Jaime is the author of Delia’s Shadow, the first in a three book series coming from TOR beginning in September 2013. Delia’s Shadow won the 2009 Columbus Literary Award for Fiction, administered by Thurber House and funded by the Columbus Art Council. She doesn’t take herself nearly as seriously as that credit implies.

Jaime’s short fiction has appeared in Daily Science Fiction, Lone Star Stories, and two of the well-respected Triangulations anthologies. She was the editor of the 2010 Rhysling Anthology for the Science Fiction Poetry Association, a poetry and short fiction editor for a semi-pro zine for five years. For a short period of time she read slush for a literary agent, and has critiqued more novels and short stories than she wants to count.

Get in on this one by bidding over here.

  • A critique and commentary on your complete submission packet by literary agent Jennifer Azantian.

Jen

Jennifer Azantian is a literary agent at the Paul Levine Literary Agency where she represents science fiction, fantasy, and smart, psychological horror. She began her career with the Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency in 2011 where learned from the best and had the pleasure of working with some of the most prolific and talented authors around. In her limited free time, she is a published author of several short stories and brings to the agency her passion for literature born of a writer’s heart. Her personal tastes run toward all flavors of the fantastic. She believes that it is against the backdrop of fantasy and science fiction that basic human truths can be best examined, magnified, and delighted in.

Jennifer Azantian is offering a detailed critique and commentary of your submission packet (query, synopsis, and first three chapters up to 15,000 words) as someone who has worked as gatekeeper to thousands of submissions in her budding career. She’ll include her thoughts on pacing, impact, characterization, world-building, and more within three months of receiving your submission. Though she makes no promises, she would be a fool not to consider representing a project if it truly blows her away.

Getting in with a literary agent isn’t easy – bid for your chance over here.

Josh and Patricia

Joshua Palmatier and Patricia Bray (co-editors of the DAW Books anthologies AFTER HOURS: TALES FROM THE UR-BAR and THE MODERN FAE’S GUIDE TO SURVIVING HUMANITY) will each read and evaluate your short story (up to 7500 words in standard manuscript format) within six weeks of submission. Each author will write a general evaluation of the story and mark up the manuscript using comments and track changes in the document itself, although this will NOT be a formal line or copy edit, simply commentary at specific points in the short story. Patricia Bray is the author of six fantasy novels from Bantam Spectra and has published numerous novellas and short stories in various anthologies.

Joshua Palmatier has five dark, epic fantasy novels published by DAW and four short stories in various anthologies. Their experience is mostly with all forms of fantasy, science fiction, and horror. Their intent will be to offer editorial advice on how to improve your story and to use their experience as both authors and editors to make it the best it can be.

Joshua and Patricia have requested that you send them your manuscript no later than July 1, 2014.

To bid on Joshua and Patricia’s read and critique, head to the auction over here.

  • A critique of the first 10,000 words of a sci-fi/fantasy novel from urban fantasy novelist Michael R. Underwood.

Michael R. Underwood

Michael R. Underwood is pleased to offer a critique of an excerpt of up to the first 10,000 words of a fantasy/science fiction novel (adult or young adult) and offer critical feedback, covering how the excerpt opens, characterization, plotting, setting, and the expectations set for a reader by the excerpt, as well as an overview of strengths and weaknesses of the excerpt.

Mike will make notes throughout the manuscript and offer a formal overview of the manuscript in the form of a critique letter. This critique does not count as or entitle the winner to a submission to Angry Robot, an endorsement or a blurb, though if the sample is particularly strong, Mike may be willing to pass it along to someone. This auction is only for the critique.

Michael R. Underwood is the imprint-bestselling author of the comedic urban fantasy novels Geekomancy and Celebromancy (from Pocket Star Books), as well as the forthcoming Attack the Geek, Shield and Crocus, and The Younger Gods. Mike has been a bookseller, an independent sales representative, and is currently the North American Sales & Marketing Manager for Angry Robot Books. Mike is a graduate of the 2007 Clarion West Workshop, and his short fiction has appeared in Escape Pod and Crossed Genres.

Bid on this awesome opportunity over here.

  • A consultation about your query letter and synopsis, with a Skype discussion from Michael R. Underwood.

Michael R. Underwood

Michael R. Underwood will read and critique a query letter and short synopsis (2-5 pages) for a young adult or adult science fiction/fantasy novel, giving detailed written feedback.

In addition, Mike is offering a 20-minute Skype discussion about the query and synopsis. The discussion will also include advice on how to refine the pitch with an eye toward submission to agents and professional markets. This critique and consultation does not count as or entitle the winner to a submission to Angry Robot, an endorsement, or a blurb, though if the query is particularly strong, Mike may be willing to pass it along to someone. This auction is only for the critique and the consultation.

Michael R. Underwood is the imprint-bestselling author of the comedic urban fantasy novels Geekomancy and Celebromancy (from Pocket Star Books), as well as the forthcoming Attack the Geek, Shield and Crocus, and The Younger Gods. Mike has been a bookseller, an independent sales representative, and is currently the North American Sales & Marketing Manager for Angry Robot Books. Mike is a graduate of the 2007 Clarion West Workshop, and his short fiction has appeared in Escape Pod and Crossed Genres.

This is a great additional auction, especially if you’re more concerned about your submission packet than your manuscript.  If it interests you, head over and bid on it.

Peter and Friends

Head to Seattle to attend a full day of writing discussions and workshops. The Day of Narrative Design will consist of three parts throughout the day: Game Writing, Short Fiction Writing, and Novel Writing.

This event has not been scheduled for a specific date as yet, so that schedules can be worked through, but contributing authors have agreed to be flexible on date anytime between February 2014 – June 2014.

Peter Orullian, author and musician, finalist for the Compton Crook award and short-listed for the David Gemmel Morningstar award, will lead and participate in these sessions, having had a hand in each. Peter’s worked in the video game industry for ten years, and previously in the publishing industry for five.

 If you’re an established writer looking to branch out into another area of the field, or an aspiring writer looking for pro advice and instruction, or a reader interested in talking with writers working across these different mediums, then this will be a day to remember.

There’ll be a grab-bag of signed books from the cool folks you meet with throughout the day.

This is a really cool opportunity, and there are even more details over in the auction, so be sure to head over, check it out, and bid.

  • A read and critique of the beginning of your novel (up to 25,000 words) and pitch letter or summary, by Del Rey fantasy author Robert V.S. Redick.

Rob Redick

Currently based in Indonesia, Rob is the author of The Chathrand Voyage Quartet, described by Locus as “one of the most distinctive and appealing epic fantasies of the decade.” The series began with The Red Wolf Conspiracy and concluded in February 2013 with The Night of the Swarm. He is also a seasoned editor, international development worker and writing teacher. He loves all good storytelling but has a soft spot for the literary end of the SF/fantasy spectrum.

Rob is offering a critique of the beginning of your novel (to a maximum 25,000 words), and will also be glad to assess a pitch letter or brief summary of the same. He generally includes a few line edits, but concentrates on providing no-nonsense, no-attitude feedback. He seeks to balance a professional & analytical critique with his own spontaneous but self-aware response as a reader. And Rob’s always careful to remember that this is your book and your agenda, not his own.

You can bid on Rob’s auction right over here.

  • A read and critique of the first 150,000 words of your manuscript from the person who made Name of the Wind not suck, Brett Hiorns.

Brett Monkey

Brett has been one of Pat’s go-to beta readers since the beginning, and was even called in as an alpha reader for Wise Man’s Fear (the book really didn’t make sense at that stage). He’s currently the voice behind a lot of the Worldbuilders website content and auction descriptions, and has done webcomic work, amusing movie reviews and plenty of longer-form horror fiction. Pat keeps pestering him to publish a book or two, but apparently he’s afraid of success.

His preferred genre is horror, but he’ll tackle fantasy and science fiction, or anything that sounds interesting. He also enjoys young adult fiction for its brevity and creativity.

Brett can help you with character voice and dialogue, concise writing, and the nuts and bolts of grammar and punctuation. He’ll also analyze pacing and the consistency of world building, and he’ll do his best to poke holes in the book’s internal logic.

The critique will include reading up to 150,000 words, marking up the margins with suggestions, corrections, and random comments. He will also type up a detailed explanation of the manuscript’s strong points and possible weaknesses, as well as clarifications and expansions of his marginal notes.

A note from Pat Rothfuss:

Okay folks. Here’s the deal. When we were putting together this second batch of read-and-critiques. I said to Brett, “You give really good editorial advice. How would you feel about offering up a critique?”

“Nobody would bid on that,” he said.

“A chance to get feedback from the person who has been a pivotal part of my revision process?” I said. “I think people would jump at it.”

He just kinda shook his head at me, as if the extent of my dementia made him sad inside.

Still, he’s said he’s willing. So let me explain a few things about Brett, because he doesn’t feel entirely comfortable talking about how great he is.

I’ve known Brett for over 20 years. He was my first writing tutor back in college. He gave me advice on my first, horrible high-school novel. Later, he gave me feedback on a book I called “The Song of Flame and Thunder.”

That book changed titles several times, eventually becoming The Name of the Wind.

Brett read several drafts of The Wise Man’s Fear, too. Probably more drafts than anyone other than myself. More drafts than my editor. Not because Betsy isn’t awesome. It’s just that Brett started reading those drafts back in 1997.

Now is Brett a professional fiction writer? No.

But let me say this. Brett is a *great* writer. I know this because I’ve read his unpublished urban fantasy novel and it’s fucking brilliant. One of my greatest sources of guilt is the fact that his work here at Worldbuilders keeps him too busy to finish his final round of revisions and start submitting it to publishers.

Is Brett a professional editor? Also no. But he gives great feedback. He has the rare gift of not letting his ego interfere with his critique.

Let me say one last thing: Right now I’m writing a novella about Auri. I’m about a hair’s breadth from being done with the first draft, and I’ve never been so torn up and confused about anything I’ve ever written.

Part of me thinks this story is some of the best writing I’ve done: brave and different and brilliant. Another part of me thinks this story is… just the dumbest concept ever. Just vastly hugely embarrassingly stupid.

Brett is the first person I’ll be showing this story to. Because Brett is clever and honest and gentle. I know that after his critique, I won’t want to throw this story into a fire or put a gun in my mouth.

And even better, I know after Brett’s critique, I’ll understand my story better. I’ll be able to move forward and revise it in a productive manner.

So. If you’d like Brett to critique your stuff, you can bid on his auction over here.

*  *  *

There you have it, folks.  Another blog full of cool opportunities for aspiring writers.

You can also see *all* the current Worldbuilders auctions by clicking the link below.

Stay tuned to the blog, because we’re going to be posting up more and more marvelous things until the fundraiser ends….

 

Posted in BJ Hiorns Art, Worldbuilders 2013 | By Pat14 Responses

Games and Geekery

Worldbuilders-Logo_Web_Smaller

This is a Worldbuilders blog.

Today’s blog consists of some awesome  games of all sorts.  Cards, role playing, and table top.  Games for kids, games for adults, and games for people who don’t fit well into those sort of categories.  And because they’re a little specialized, we’re going to offer almost all of them up as auctions for the people who really really want them.

But as some of you may have seen, we just had a sale go on over at The Tinker’s Packs, and it was extremely well received.  And since we have a few other things that people might be interested in, we thought we’d throw some up there as well.

Bring it on:

  • The Store: Dice bags of various types, and an awesome game bundle.

Dice Bags and Game Bundle

Sometimes, you just need to be a little bit cooler than all of your friends.  Here we are offering you three ways to do that.

We have eight hand-knit dice bags from Nerdbaby Creations for you to bring to your weekly game of Pathfinder.  Jennifer even pledged a percentage of her Etsy sales to Worldbuilders last month, so we wish that all her modifiers be positive.

If aluminum is more your thing, we have two chainmaille dice bags from Chainmaille by Joy for you to bring to your weekly LARP.  These are really quite impressive, and since we’ve only got two, you should jump on them before they’re gone.

And then we have a sweet game bundle (worth over $125) that we’re selling so that you still have table top games to play the other five nights a week.  It doesn’t matter who’s playing, either.

The bundle contains three games from Albino Dragon: Genegrafter, Dragon Whisperer and Ace of Spies, all card-and-token hybrids with a few spins on game play that keep things interesting.  Then for the little folk, there’s Gamewright’s Sleeping Queens, a combination memory/strategy game that’s geared toward kids but way too fun for the adults to pass up. Finally, there’s Sentinels of the Multiverse from Greater Than Games, which Amanda would self-administer intravenously if she could.

AuthorDnD

Last year we auctioned off a chance to play D&D with a bunch of awesome authors at ConFusion. We had an awesome time, so when Peter V. Brett asked me if we wanted to auction off another seat for Worldbuilders, I was more than happy to accept. I can’t make it this year, which sucks for me, because it’s always a great time.

This year’s awesome author-players will be Kelley Armstrong, Cherie Priest, Myke Cole, Wesley Chu, and Sam Sykes. Peter V. Brett and Howard Tayler will DM the game, which will be filmed and edited for release on youtube again.

Legendary ConFusion will be held January 17-19, 2014 at the Doubletree Hotel Detroit/Dearborn. The game will take place on the 18th from 9am to noon, and books, dice and other supplies and refreshments will be provided.  However, please keep in mind that this auction is just for a seat at the table.  You’ll still have to arrange your own transportation, hotel accommodation and admission to the con.

If you want to get in on the action, make sure to check out the auction and bid.

P1050258

During the 2013 Worldcon/Lone Star Con 3 in San Antonio, Texas, members of the Reddit Fantasy community carried this polished steel helm around to various authors and industry people and had them sign it. This thing is covered in signatures. They threw in a couple microfiber polishing cloths and a Lone Star Con program. They even included a handy list where the signers could write their name for easy identification. Think of the list as a key to the puzzle.

They even snagged a picture of Martin trying it on after he signed it.

Martin

They have more photos of the goings on if you’re interested.

To bid, head over here to the auction.

All the Game Bundles

There’s three auctions to choose from.  I’ve linked the titles to their respective auctions if you’re feeling clickish.

Game Salute Bundle: Sunrise City, Zombie Ninja Pirates, Collateral Damage, Alien Frontiers Factions: Faction Pack #1, and Alien Frontiers Factions: Upgrade Pack.

This is a bundle with room for future expansion. Three games you can play right now, plus three expansion packs for the popular (and now sadly out of print) Alien Frontiers. Don’t worry, though–their Kickstarter was a success and the 4th edition of Alien Frontiers is currently available for preorder. Based on the reviews of the 3rd edition, it will be awesome. Awesome.

Five Games from AEG: Trains, Guildhall, Agent Hunter, Maximum Throwdown, and Straw. There isn’t one single dud in this bundle. All five games get great reviews and together they have a broad appeal.  If you’re not in the mood for a more involved strategy game like Trains or Guildhall, Straw is quick and lighthearted. If you feel like messing up your opponents, Maximum Throwdown’s got your back. You won’t be bored, that’s for sure.

Awesome 9 Game bundle: This auction is exactly what the title suggests, 9 awesome games in one go. You get the 8-bit style, classic video game inspired Boss Monster from Brotherwise Games and one of a small pool of strategic wine making games (seriously, there is more than one, but this one is the best), Viticulture from Stonemaier Games.

There’s also the cooperative adventure board game Legends of Andor from Fantasy Flight Games, three Albino Dragon games (Genegrafter, Dragon Whisperer and Ace of Spies), and three games from AEG (Guildhall: Job Faire, Maximum Throwdown and Straw).

Some of these games are available in The Tinker’s Packs game bundle, most are not, and all of them are worth checking out.

Starcraft-Veronica-Books

If your tastes run less board-game-ish and more swag-ish, there’s another trio of auctions (again, each auction is linked to their title).  Speaking of swag, I recently found out it’s an acronym. Seriously.  The word “swag” stands for “Stuff We All Get”–like tee shirts, coffee mugs, and other standard souvenirs. This sort of etymology gives me little shivers.

Solar backpack from Techzilla’s own Veronica Belmont:  Veronica sent a solar backpack full of fun goodies she knew you’d like, including:

Revision3 branded solar backpack with charging tips for iPhone 4 and most Android phones
Fitbit Zip Activity Tracker (poking out of the front pocket, there)
Sword and Laser white fitted women’s tee shirt (Size: Medium)
Gibson Guitars men’s tee shirt (Size: Large)
Gibson Guitars black knit beanie with embroidered logo (Size: head)
Monster Inspiration headphones with changeable Apple/Android ControlTalk cables.
The 4-Hour Chef by Timothy Ferris (Hardcover)
The 2013 Literary Pin-Up Calendar

The auction has more detailed writeups of this stuff, but you get the idea. It’s a sweet batch of stuff lovingly compiled by an awesome woman.

Starcraft 2: Wings of Liberty signed by the Blizzard development team: Classic space strategy. You know the drill–it’s Starcraft 2 with its expansive universe, online multiplayer and rich community, but with a box signed by everyone responsible for making this game awesome. If you’re a fan of the franchise, treat yourself to an autographed copy and unlimited bragging rights.

Ultimate History of Video Games & Guide to Classic Graphic Adventures: These two books were chosen by Game of Books creator Aaron Stanton as his favorite books on video games. The Ultimate History of Video Games by Steven L. Kent is a fascinating look inside the video game industry that starts with Pong and runs all the way through the current game industry. Aaron says, “For a time, a good 50% of all my most amusing game-related anecdotes came from this one book. I’ve read it several times.”

The Guide to Classic Graphic Adventure Games by Kurt Kalata is a reference tome for all games texty and adventuresome. It has interviews with the developers and concise illustrated writeups of a ton of graphic adventure games like Sam & Max, Maniac Mansion, King’s Quest, Leisure Suit Larry and, of course, Zork. This is more of a book for browsing instead of reading cover-to-cover, but it’s chock full of interesting stuff about classic, old-school games.

  • Auction: Custom Playing Card Deck Designed by Shane Tyree

ShanesDeck

This is a great offer, guys.  Shane Tyree is the artist that brought us Albino Dragon’s Call of Cthulu deck and the Name of the Wind deck. His work can also be found in products from Fantasy Flight Games, Alderac Entertainment Group, Catalyst Game Labs, Wizards of the Coast and more.

Shane is offering up something a really cool to the highest bidder. Shane will draw a unique playing card deck, including custom court cards and card back, for the winner of this auction. The cards will be created digitally, and manufactured through Palaimon cards. Shane will incorporate your feedback into their design, making this a unique piece of functional artwork. If you play cards, collect them, or know someone who does, this would be a great keepsake.

It’s only for individual purposes, so it won’t be distributed commercially.  You should probably go bid on it while you still can.

(P.S. If you’re as much of a fan of Shane’s work as I am, I’m guessing you’ll be excited to hear that he’s doing another Cthulhu-themed kickstarter: Call Of Cuthulu: The Writhing Dark. Not only will there be a new deck of playing cards, but he’s doing a set of Tarot cards too. I heard a rumor that a certain beardy fantasy author will be appearing as the Emperor in that deck…

If you are interested, be warned, there’s just four days left to his kickstarter.)

* * *

Okay, that’s it for now.

This is shaping up to be a pretty awesome year for Worldbuilders, guys.  I hope you’re as excited as I am.

To be eligible to win any of the cool books and prizes in the lottery, head over to our Team Heifer page and donate.

Remember, you can see everything we’ve got in the lottery so far over at the Lottery Library, and hear about on what’s going on in Worldbuilders HQ on the Worldbuilders website.

If you want to watch these auctions and more, keep an eye on our eBay seller page.  We post new auctions every Thursday so there’ll be something new for you soon…

Posted in Worldbuilders 2013 | By Pat10 Responses
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