First print run! Plus, an exceedingly kind new blurb

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Good news, Accidental Army! (That's what I've been calling you in my head for some time now. I hope you don't mind.) Last night I reviewed and approved final proofs from my printer, and I placed the first official order for The Accidental Terrorist. Printing is underway! The first copies should reach me in a week or so.

If you pre-ordered the signed hardcover, I'll probably be spending the bulk of my remaining evenings this month stuffing books into boxes and padded envelopes and getting them back out in the mail. I'm going to start with those of you who are farthest away—yes, that means you, Rev. Ould!—working my way through the buyer list from the U.K. to Canada to the West Coast and so on, with my fellow New Yorkers saved for last. That way, hopefully everyone will get their orders at about the same time.

God, I can't wait to get these books to you. Thanks for being so patient, friends.

And speaking of books, my publicist received a blurb last night that was just a smidgen too late to make the cover, but you can be sure I'll find a way to squeeze a portion of it onto a later printing. One of the many humiliating aspects of a writer's life is the necessity of begging (ahem, or of having one's publicist beg) one's writerly friends and acquaintances to read your little book and then possibly maybe, if it isn't too much of an inconvenience and of course only if they feel like they can do so honestly and free of compulsion, to proffer a tiny blurb in support.

Well, I feel very fortunate in the blurbs my memoir has received so far, and now I feel doubly fortunate to have an exceedingly kind one in hand from the amazing and gracious Kristine Kathryn Rusch.

Kris has been such a presence and master and force of nature on the genre scene for so long that you might find it startling to hear that she and I first became acquainted thirty years ago, before either of us had sold any fiction. Today, Kris has published so many dozens of novels in so many genres under so many names and won so many awards that it seems impossible that she hasn't always been around, like air. She also has one of the sharpest heads for the business of writing and publishing that you will ever encounter.

But yes, there we both were with fifteen other eager and terrified students at the Clarion Writers Workshop at Michigan State University in 1985. I was only seventeen at the time, and while my Clarion experiences for the most part did not make it into the final draft of my memoir, the influence of it certainly hovers in the background of the whole narrative, at least for me.

Anyway, enough of my blather. Here's what Kris had to say about The Accidental Terrorist:

“I met William Shunn before the events described in this book took place. While I've heard bits and pieces of the tale over the years, I never knew the entire story. Nor did I have any real idea what Bill had been thinking at the time. The Accidental Terrorist provides the complete story and puts it into an essential context. In addition, the book grabs you on page one and never lets go. Fantastically written, beautifully paced, The Accidental Terrorist reads like a novel instead of a memoir. Only in novel form, no one would have ever believed these events could have happened. Believe it. William Shunn lived every word of this book. That he can share it so eloquently is a tribute not just to his writing skill, but his strengths as a human being.”
—Kristine Kathryn Rusch, USA Today bestselling author
Believe it or not, Kris was also the editor who gave me my first break in the science fiction field. By the time my stuff was approaching publishable levels, she had already succeeded Ed Ferman as editor of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, and it was Kris who bought my first published short story. I guess what I'm saying is that she's been very generous to me over the years, but she's still a tough enough editor and critic that I know she's not blowing smoke when she says she likes something. So this blurb is very precious to me indeed.

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This page contains a single entry by William Shunn published on September 17, 2015 8:15 AM.

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