Thursday, May 26, 2011

A Fantasy Author in New York

I'm not one of those who can work anywhere. My wife Robin I suspect could work while skydiving if she could figure a way to hold her laptop and type at the same time. And while I frequently write notes at coffee shops I have problems trying to write anything serious unless I am in a reasonably controlled environment.

This past week I have been in New York attending the BEA and visiting with various members of Orbit. This is also the second post I have done on the road, and the second written and posted via my iPad. It works, but is a bit cumbersome. I would wait to make a more elaborate post when I return to the comforts of my office, but I have an hour before I need to get to my book signing and little else to do. I am at a Starbucks next to Times Square being frozen by the excessive air conditioning and sipping from a near empty cup of black coffee.

New York has been interesting. My third time here, the first was as a gawking tourist, the second, a lot less gawking, but this is the first business trip. Granted most of my business is going to lunch and dinner, but it's still business. I've met more people in the last couple of days than in the last year. Authors, editors, bloggers, reviewers, PR people even designers.

Last night I attended a cocktail mixer put on by Orbit where members of Hachett's science fiction and fantasy imprint, Orbit, got together with members of their thriller imprint Mulholland Books. Most of the evening flashed by in a blur of half heard names and drink-shifting handshakes. I hope I won't be tested on anything as I failed take any notes and have a terrible head for names. I met a wide variety of people including bloggers, and the senior fantasy and thriller editors for Publisher's Weekly. Of course I also met with the orbit team working on Theft of Swords, spending most of my time with Publishing Director, Tim Holman, Senior Editor, Devi Pillai, Publicist Jack Womack, and Marketing Director, Alex Lencicki. And as I mentioned this morning I will soon be signing books at the mammoth Javits Center.

Lots of drinks, even more coffee, lavish dinners, luncheon meetings with agents and editors, and wandering the wide sidewalks of a congested movie set they call Manhattan. It sounds like part of the dream all writer's aspire to, but I must say, I will be very happy to catch the bus home tonight. There is something about New York that is like over dosing on caffeine. You get the jitters and eventually crash. The intensity of this city can exhaust you just by being here. Everyone is running in fourth gear because there is just no time for first through third. The streets are like conveyor belts that you need to merge into and keep up on or get mowed down by the herd. This is a city of workers. No one is idle, everyone rushes, and those on cell phones are talking numbers. I'm not sure if the word tranquility is in the New York lexicon unless it is defined as Central Park. People here owe a lot to Olmsted for that bit of green. I don't know how people could live here without it.

For those at the BEA today stop by the Hachett Book booth around noon and get a signed Advance Reading Copy of Theft of Swords, I'll be happy to sign it and shake your hand, and chat...but then I think I'll be happy to pass out on the bus.


  1. Either I need to get to the east coast, or we need to convince Orbit that they should send you to Chicago for a PR event or two.

    An even more brilliant idea... DO BOTH!

    Glad to hear that things are going well. Be sure to tip the bus driver, just to make sure he wakes you up at your stop!

  2. Oh, sounds like you had a great time! And I was hoping to get to BEA this year, but life had other paths to follow. Great post. :)


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