Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Notes from DragonCon 2013 Part One

Sorry for the big gap in blog posts. I have recently started graduate school and between that, freelance work, and my own writing projects, that's bit into my blogging time considerably.

So here are some notes I took from DragonCon 2013:

*At a branding panel with artist John Picacio, he said art directors are the ones who generally hire artists. To become a successful freelance artist, he recommends building relationships with publishers but also be a member of the fan community via things like attending conventions.

*Many independent authors want book covers but offer too little money. He's turned them down for this reason, but suggested that second rights to an artistic work can be sold for much cheaper.

*Those interested in finding good fantasy art should check out Spectrum or visit DeviantArt. One DA artist has done the covers for several of my Kindle stories, so I've already taken that advice into account.

*At a pulp panel featuring my writer friends James R. Tuck and Delilah S. Dawson, I learned the ideal word count for pulp publisher Airship 27 is 60,000 words. That's what I'm shooting for with The Thing In The Woods, although I fear it might come up short. James has advised me to send Battle for the Wastelands to pulp publishers and once I hear back from some biggies I've already sent it to, I'll take his advice.

*With pulp, there's less need for a back-story.

*Later books in a series can feature a Dramatis Personae that's a recap without being a recap.

* is a good place to have your books recorded for audio purposes. I might give that a try with my e-books.

*Nazi rocket planes were fueled by red foaming nitric acid and 100% hydrogen peroxide, both of which will dissolve anything. When mishaps occurred and the chemicals spilled into cockpits, pilots would literally melt. This happened at least once.

*John Ringo is apparently popular in Europe. His father-in-law, a minister in Lithuania, name-dropped Ringo and doubled the number of people at his church services. Meanwhile, either Ringo himself or a friend of his (I can't remember clearly) encountered some German women who were big fans.

*Romantic fiction in Germany is apparently very BDSM/dominance-heavy. Dawson and Ringo discussed the reaction to their books in more-puritanical America and according to Ringo, his Paladin of Shadows novels fit right in but Dawson's steampunk vampire romance is very tame. Ringo's account of the reaction of his mother (and her book club) to Ghost, the first Paladin novel, was hilarious. If you've ever heard of the Internet meme "Oh John Ringo No," it's about the series. Here you go.

*Pyr Books' "Toxic City" novels taking place in a London quarantined due to the use of chemical/biological weapons are being adapted for a television series. However, it's being set in Los Angeles. Given how the first book is London Eye, I'm wondering what they're going to call the series. "Toxic City," according to one of the Pyr panelists, seems like a good bet.

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