The sleepy dormouse speaks

It never fails that exciting things happen when I’m trying to stay off the internet, and I can either report them and let myself succumb to distraction, or I can stay off the internet and appear even more oblivious than usual. So yes, while I was gone, I learned that Seraphina is one of the finalists for the 2012 Andre Norton Award. I’m not so jaded by my other nominations that I’m impervious to the tremendous honour of this one. What a wonderful list to be on. I am so very, very awed and grateful.

I finished the current draft of The Sequel Unnameable and sent it to El Capitan Pantalones de Editor. The second book won’t be called Dracomachia, I am reliably informed, but what it WILL be called is still up in the air at this point. I am now off to a week or two (or however long it takes) of unbridled napping. That’s right. I’m tired.

Thursday evening (7ET) I will be participating in an on-line author chat at a site called Figment, along with fellow debut novelists Alexandra Monir and Elizabeth Laban. It should be excellent good fun. I’ll wake up for it, I promise.


Ah, friends, once again I’m burying myself in work for the next foreseeable while. I want so badly to get this draft of the sequel off my chest; you don’t even know. I am keeping my nose to the proverbial grindstone, thinking I can finish it soon. You may not hear from me before March. Keep well until then, and I will see you on the other side.


I learned today that Seraphina has won a Cybils Award for YA SF/F. My heartfelt thanks to all the nominators and judges from the book blogging community. This is a relatively new award, but Random House notified my editor that I’d won, so I’d say the publishers are taking notice and keeping track.

It was also announced today that Seraphina has been short-listed for the Waterstones Prize in the UK. The story made the BBC news site (I’m linking to that story because the title cracks me up. Beavis and Butthead, y’all! Oh, and some other books!). This is a huge honour. The winner will be announced March 21st. I’ll be under my bed.

In totally other news, my photographer friend Lauren Zurchin is doing a fantasy authors calendar for charity! Go check it out, and then support her Kickstarter to help make it happen! I’m not in it*, but many other exciting people are, the idea is excellent, and the charities are worthwhile.

* Because “Spocktober” is not a month. How was I supposed to know?

Is that all we got? Only one thing more: Vancouver has crocuses, ladies and gentlemen. I’m callin’ it for spring!

Weep, O Mine Eyes

I’ve joined a madrigal choir, which is kind of exciting. We’re singing this:

Isn’t it lovely? Although I have to admit “and cease not” sounds a lot like “and see snot” when you’re singing. There was a certain amount of giggling about this, not all of it mine.

This video is also super useful for learning the song, since it follows right along with the music. I sang alto (although I managed soprano for “Mille Regretz”, which we also sang). I’m technically a mezzo, I think, and am trying to pretend this is a feature, not a defect. Good for both, not good for nothing.

The real St. Gobnait

The St. Gobnait in Seraphina was inspired by a real Irish saint, whose church and sacred spring we visited years ago. Today (Feb. 11) is her holy day in Baile Bhuirne (Ballyvourney). Here’s an article mentioning Gobnait and some other ancient holy wells in Ireland. The Diocese of Kerry page has fewer pictures but is more informative. The last several paragraphs are in Irish, and are (according to my husband, my resident translator) a description of how to do the devotional tour. I will just bring your attention to a bit of Irish I understood, however:

If you do drink water at the well you take responsibility for your own well being!….. tá creideamh agus creideamh ann!

That is to say: there’s belief, and there’s belief! The well, as I recall, is at the bottom of a hillside full of cows. It was pouring rain when we were there. We didn’t sample it ourselves.

Beannachtaí Lá Gobnatan daoibh!

New North American cover!

I know, I know, I wasn’t going to post this week. I was going to ensconce myself in my Chamber of Clandestine Composition and work until my fingers bled (and believe me, that’s what I’ve been doing). However, I have news so exciting it couldn’t wait. I had to bust out and tell you (also: get myself a cup of tea. Composing clandestinely is thirsty work!).

It’s the new cover, darlings. Here it is!

When you see it in shops, it will have the Morris sticker on it too!

When you see it in shops, it will have the Morris sticker on it too!

So it turns out, ha ha, the new edition is coming out earlier than anticipated (in the US, anyway) because shops are running out of the older edition. These have already shipped, and shops will be putting them out soon. If you dearly love the original cover (and I do, so I understand that), your time to find those may be limited. I merely mention the fact.

I don’t know what the schedule is for the changeover in Canada. I do know that Canada is planning to re-jacket on the original book; the bonus material will be available online from Random House Canada (link provided on the jacket flap). Once those all sell, the next printing will have the bonus material inside. When I learn any more details, I’ll let you know.

So there you have it, bright and festive, new but not unrecognizably so. I like it a lot, particularly the new font, and that S that looks like a little dragon in its own right.

All right! Back to work with me!

Lytherus guest post, another list, and news

So my guest post on “genre bending“, the big finale to Rachel Hartman Week on Lytherus, is up. It’s been fun over there this week, and I am so flattered that they thought of me.

I have also been  informed that Seraphina made another list, the ALSC 2013 Notable Children’s Books list. I am reliably informed by multiple librarians that it is very tricky to get on both this and yesterday’s YALSA list, so I am feeling quite fortunate to have done so.

But oh, you lovely folks. It has been a wonderful week and also a very difficult one. All this praise. It’s wonderful, and very, very distracting. Real life – where the dog is sick and chores must be done and writing is WORK – seems very hard after a continuous diet of praise. It’s like some kind of Praise Hangover, this malaise.

So I’m going on a little retreat, just a short one, from the internet. I’ll still read e-mail, but I’m taking a break from the blog and all social media for about ten days. I’ll see you all again on the 11th or thereabouts.

And thank you. Thank you for reading, and enjoying, and telling me about it. Back soon!