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marthawells

Martha Wells

My Flying Lizard Circus


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marthawells

WorldCon Day 4

First, a couple of business things:

I wanted to mention that I'm doing a GoodReads Giveaway drawing for copies of The Cloud Roads. That giveaway will go until the end of September. There will be a giveaway for copies of The Serpent Sea in October, and then a giveaway for The Siren Depths in November leading up to the release in December.

Answering a question someone asked, if you want ebooks here are links I've accumulated to places who sell them. My reprint ebooks of The Element of Fire, City of Bones, and Wheel of the Infinite are on Nook, the Amazons of various countries, and DRM-free on Kobo, which sells to many countries.

WorldCon Saturday:

It was a bit rainy that day, so me and aughoti just had breakfast in the hotel (which was good but expensive) and then went up to what was left of the Night Bazaar suite to help clean up. We met Katy and Chet up there, and picked up the trash and collected all the non-alcoholic and non-bug drinks and foods and took them down to the con suite to donate. (The con suite had apparently come through with more cups at a very desperate part of the party, so there was a lot of gratitude toward them.) Then I had to take off for my reading.

The reading was at 10:30 that morning, and the room was kind of packed. It was the most people I've ever had at a WorldCon reading, maybe around 25 people or so. So that was very nice to see. I read from an early chapter of The Siren Depths, the third Raksura book. Afterward I signed some books for people and ran into Sharon Shinn again and chatted with some people a bit about fear of celebrities. (I have an irrational fear of talking to celebrities. At the DragonCon I went to, I was on a panel with Richard Hatch from Battlestar Galactica, and I had to sit next to him, and at one point he reached for his waterglass and accidentally touched my hand, and I almost climbed into the lap of terri_osborne who was sitting on my other side.) Then we were all suddenly separated by an elevator skirmish.



One thing I did like about this hotel was the fact that they had security people and sometimes Bellmen (and sometimes both) controlling the main elevators for pretty much the entire con. Usually the con has volunteers to do this in the party evenings, but the hotel doing it seemed to work much more efficiently. In the offtimes this basically meant that there was always someone to push the button for you and hold the door when your hands were full, and in the high traffic evenings when there are long lines for the elevators it meant a lot of the usual elevator-related drama was way toned down and the waits weren't as bad, at least for us.

After my reading, I had a short break before my first panel, but not really long enough to eat lunch. It was going to be a bit before I could get into the panel room, because a filk session with Patrick Rothfuss was in there and there were about 400 people in a room meant for 50. So I went to the con suite to try to get a hot tea, but the hot water dispenser didn't work. Someone came up and said it was full but the pump had been left out and left the pump there. And more or less this conversation ensued:

Helpful young woman: "I'm a coffee professional, I can fix this!"

She tries to get the lid off, and I try to help her, but it won't come off.

HYW: "What's wrong with this thing? We need a physicist!"

Passing Physicist: "I'm a physicist."

HYW: "Will you help us fix this?"

Physicist: "No! I'm not here this weekend, I won't help you." (I suspect he had a very demanding job and was called on to fix stuff a lot.)

I am now using both hands to hold open every latch on the lid while HYW tries to wrestle it off, but it won't budge.

HYW: "I should be able to do this! I do this all the time at work."

Me: something vaguely encouraging, along the lines of "it's not your fault, this thing is just messed up"

Then the physicist walks up and lifts the one latch we didn't see, and the lid pops open.

HYW: "See, you helped us!"

Physicist: "I didn't help you, I'm not here."

HYW installs the pump, we manage to get the lid back on, and I pump it and get hot water.

Me to HYW: "Yay you!"

So I got tea after all. Then I went to the panel on "Drill Down into Story Ideas" about how you develop an idea once you have it, and how different people shape the same idea. Ferrett Steinmetz was an excellent moderator.

Then I had to run right to my koffeeklatsch. I grabbed a piece of brown bread from the con suite which was all I had time for, and ate it and a package of m&ms while talking to everybody. I answered a lot of good questions and I think we had a pretty good time.

It was after 3:00 by that point and I went and got aughoti and we left the hotel to walk to Macy's. It sound weird, but this Macy's is Macy's on State Street is the second largest department store in the world and is recognized as a National Historic Landmark and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It's twelve floors and really a neat building. We went up to The Walnut Room, which is the old traditional restaurant and had a late lunch. First, the restaurant is beautiful, with dark wood paneling in this large two-story room, with a wine bar and fancy coffee and tea drinks. Second, our waiters looked like they should be following the Grateful Dead on tour and were charming and hilarious. Third, the food was incredibly cheap compared to our hotel. (Seriously, I got a chicken pot pie and a salad that was more than I could eat for $10.95.) Fourth, the food was really tasty. And aughoti gave me a really pretty dragon necklace for my birthday.

We walked around the store a bit afterward, but had too much decision fatigue to buy anything. We went back to the hotel after that, and then went to the masquerade. It went for about an hour and a half, and there were some great costumes. (And I stupidly didn't bring my camera.)

It was after 10:00 by that point, and we thought about trying to go to parties, but ended up just going up to the room and collapsing.


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I'm about three-quarters of the way through City of Bones.

I'm wondering if there is a sequel, but should wait till I finish it (to see if the world ends) to ask.

It's very strange seeing you walking around Chicago with a purged person.

Glad you guys had fun!

just read Cloud Roads and am two thirds through Serpent Sea and I am riveted. Thank you for writing these books!

Thank you for reading them! :)

I love the story of the helpful young woman and the physicist. Too wonderful. I'll have to go to Macy's if I ever find myself in Chicago again.

Ahem. Marshall Fields. It's just disguised as Macy's.

I'm afraid I'm whole ignorant in these matters.

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