Thursday, August 31, 2006


Buy a Friend a Book Week!

Well... with a Martian twist...

Here's the deal: to help promote the good folks at Buy A Friend a Book Week, I've come up with a contest for you guys, my devoted groupies.

During the month of September, I want YOU to send ME a story of how music has touched your life. Maybe it was the first song you fell in love with. Maybe it was the first song you fell in love to. Maybe it was your first meet-and-greet. The night Prong's Tommy Victor told you that you were beautiful.

Hey, wait. That last is one of mine. No stealing!

What I'll do, during Buy A Friend a Book Week, coming up this first week of October, is Buy a Groupie a Book.

That's right.

Seven of you lucky groupies will win a copy of a book -- no, not Trevor's Song, sad to say (I'm still revising it. Again. I know. You're eager. So am I.), but a book about music that has inspired me in some way and now sits on my shelves, immune to the huge and vast quantities of trading that I do.

E-mail me your stories -- you can reach me through the website, as always. And the seven of you who touch me the most deeply will win a copy of someone else's book. I'll announce the winners each day during BAFAB week, which is October 1-7 this year.

If you decide to go out and pay it forward and buy another friend a book during Buy a Friend a Book week, let me know. There might be a few special goodies in your package -- but be honest. Somehow, I have a bad habit of smelling out a lie. Also, be sure to scroll down this here page for the list of other blogs who are also running BAFAB contests and join some of them. Be sure to tell them West of Mars sent you!

Good luck, and here's to good stories!

(legal stuff: writing quality is less important than content, but spelling mistakes and text-speak are turn-offs. By submitting your story to me, you are hereby allowing me to in turn be inspired by it and use it in some way, shape, or form in future fiction writing that I may do. You will own no rights to any future work you've inspired, and no royalties will be due to you. But let's face it. The publishing industry being what it is, you'd only get about five cents anyway, and is THAT worth haggling over?)

Labels: ,

Wednesday, August 30, 2006


Daniel's most cherished moment with a fan

"Dude, I never watched the news until I heard you did. And it was like someone was showing me this whole great big fucking world that I never knew was out there. I mean, yeah, I'd heard of terrorism and all that shit, but all of a sudden, I get why it's such a big deal. I know this sounds cheesy as hell, but thanks, man."


Sunday, August 27, 2006


Unsung awards

Because Kerri is an artist (albeit a fictional one) whose own work has graced book covers and because artists never get the public recognition that they deserve, I wanted to copy this from Irene Gallo's blog.

Congratulations to all the winners and may you keep brightening our world with great art!

Hardcover: Stephan Martiniere for Elantris by Brandon Sanderson

Paperback: Tom Kidd for The Enchanter Completed edited by Harry Turtledove

Magazine: Donato Giancola for Prometheus on Asimov's

Interior: Brom for The Plucker by Brom

3D: James Christensen for Sleeper Lost in Dreams

Unpublished Color: Charles Vess for Companions to the Moon

Unpublished Monochromatic: Paul Bielaczyc for Nightmare

Product: Justin Sweet production design for The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe

Gaming Related: Gabor Szikszai & Zoltan Boros for Blazing Archon, Magic The Gathering card for Ravnica: City of Guilds

Art Director: Irene Gallo

Contribution to ASFA: Julie Faith Rigby

Artistic Achievement: John Picacio

For a full list of the final nominees and links to their art, see Chesley Awards Final Ballot.

Thursday, August 24, 2006


Let your vote count!

Tired of voting against Lukas on Rock Star: Supernova? Try The Quill Awards instead. Vote for your favorite books 'cause Dilana's gonna win anyway.


What Kerri most dreads

Two things:

1. The inevitable return of her mother to her life
2. Retirement


Tuesday, August 22, 2006


What Kerri most longs for

To sell one of her paintings for a million or more.


Monday, August 21, 2006


To further confuse an issue...

There is a man out there named Todd James Pierce. He used to, maybe still does, run a website devoted to literary agents. I won't name it 'cause I think it's defunct and even if it isn't, my point here isn't to trash the guy.

He's been trashed, at reputable places like this, among others.

BUT today, I got a mailing from the University of Pittsburgh's Contemporary Writers Series, detailing their upcoming events. On November 1, 2006, the Drue Heinz Literature Prize Reading and Award Ceremony will honor the winner...

One Todd James Pierce.

Chosen this year by Joan Didion, Mr. Pierce has won himself a $15,000 award.

Say what you will about the advice he gives (gave? It's an old bit of scandal now) new writers. But apparently none of that hoopla mattered to Ms. Didion and as Miss Snark insists time and again, good writing rises to the top every time.

Congratulations to Mr. Pierce. May this be the start of better days.

Thursday, August 17, 2006


What Trevor most hates to hear

"Him? He's nothing but a loser."


Wednesday, August 16, 2006


For Karen!

Since the last time the band was doing something interesting, they were about to host a pool party catered by Big Buck's Best Barbecue and since Karen! asked for it, and since I think it'd be fun, here's what she asked and what I answered.

Karen! said: Pop quiz!
Backyard BBQ, what does everyone (Trev, Mitchell, Kerri, etc) want most to eat?


Mitchell: Kerri
Kerri: Mitchell smothered in chocolate sauce
Trevor: Kerri, Heather, Diane, or any other willing woman
Daniel: steak, preferrably a filet, butterflied yet still perfectly medium rare
Eric: chicken breasts dripping in Bodacious (TM) Sauce, carefully scraped of the sauce before eating to prevent drips

Careful what you ask for...

Labels: , , , , ,


What Trevor most loves to hear


(choose your context; most of them work)


Monday, August 14, 2006


What Mitchell loves to hear

"Dude, the grill's ready."


Sunday, August 13, 2006


What Mitchell most hates to hear

"Aww, come on. Your wife won't mind."


Saturday, August 12, 2006


Historical Swap Moves

So over at Book Relay, we're swapping historical fiction books. Here are my moves:

March/the other book with the long title
Marrying Mozart
The Dark Queen
The Ruby Ring
The Serpent in the Garden

*** these are in rough order, but go for the book with the fewest steals and ask for a reveal (from anyone) if they're all on three.

Friday, August 11, 2006


Susan Speaks: Aug 11th

In the under two months it took me to revise Trevor's Song, I managed to completely lose track of all the different threads holding Behold Me together.

I'm not the type who can not be working on something original. While redoing Trevor, I had plenty of chances of that (it was a pretty extensive change I made. And so, so much better) original part. But now that I'm doing a quick once-over to make sure it's where I want it, I need to be writing again. NEED.

This is when I'm thankful I don't have a deadline or book on spec or anything like that. I'm considering this a luxury; having the time to muck around and figure out what wants to be written next.

I like the first page of what I've come up with so far...

Stay tuned. More fictional fun to follow.

Labels: , ,

Sunday, August 06, 2006


C'mon, help a lady out!

A bit more about the JA Konrath/MJ Rose book buzz bonanza...

Huffington Post

C'mon, folks! Help a lady out! Only 53 links as of August 3???

Thursday, August 03, 2006


Dream ShapeShifter Fan Club -- Dream Contest

If ShapeShifter had a fan club that was worth anything (which, at the time of Trevor's Song, they don't. Not really; it's merely okay), they would love to host this kind of contest (conveniently timed, of course, to coincide with a heat wave):

Summer Splash!

Do your friends think it's okay to pee in the pool? That a poolside barbecue means dogs and burgers? That the hot chick in the floating lounge chair is for dumping into the deep end?

Four lucky Shifter Club members will win the right to bring a friend and make their way to Riverview, where they will join Daniel, Trevor, Eric, and Mitchell for an afternoon of fun in the sun. We'll bring in food from local favorite Big Buck's Best Barbecue, complete with world-famous Bodacious Sauce (TM), while we have all the fun in the sun that you can handle. And then we'll have more.

How to enter: Use the contest form on the Shifter's Club website. One entry per member. Winners may bring a single guest and are responsible for getting to Riverview, but we'll spring for two nights in a not-terribly roach-infested hotel and transportation to and from a private backyard pool that you are sure to love!

Anyone waiting half an hour between eating and swimming is guaranteed to be thrown in, head first. ShapeShifter is not responsible for any injuries that may occur from this practice, but if you're worried, get yourself in the pool before we heave your ass in.

Labels: , , , , , , ,