dianeduane: (New DD Av)
image

The staging room is two flights up from where something like three hundred people are crammed wall to wall into the downstairs space of the Liberty Bounds pub on Trinity Square at the City’s edge, drinking strange liquids with names like Old Speckled Hen and Waggle Dance and Theakston’s Old Peculier out of pint glasses, while pausing occasionally to roar in annoyance or cheer in wild approval at something happening on the big-screen TVs. The third-floor upstairs room, however, contains nothing but a scatter of hardwood tables and chairs, and its mostly bare walls are ornamented with nothing more interesting than a selection of framed eighteenth-century cartoon prints and various posters advertising guest beers, upcoming karaoke nights, curry days and eighties revival-band dates, and other locations in the UK’s big Wetherspoon pub chain.

In the middle of the room, some of the the tables and chairs have been pushed out of the way to make an empty area about twenty feet wide. In that space stand three people unusually dressed for the early twenty-first century: two men in their very early forties, and a tall young man of sixteen or so. In the middle of the room with them, a rectangular slice of air about three feet wide and seven feet high has been talked into solidity and coaxed into the perfect reflectivity of a mirror.

The youngest of the group in the middle of the room is standing in front of the wizardly mirror and muttering under his breath, more or less constantly, as he fiddles with his clothes. At last he says loudly enough to be heard, “You think they had a higher than usual percentage of wizards in the late eighteen hundreds?”

A pause. “Haven’t seen any numbers on that recently,” says Carl under his breath as he buttons up his dark close-fitting vest over a full-sleeved white shirt with high collar and strangely-knotted dark tie. “Can’t think why the stats would be above the planetary half-millennial median, though. Why?”

“Because it has to have taken wizardry to deal with all… these… fastenings!”

Read more... )
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A Wizard Abroad New Millennium Edition cover

Teenage wizards Nita Callahan and Kit Rodriguez have been working the New York suburbs for nearly thirty years now, through nine novels' worth of adventures. As the dawn of their fourth decade in print draws near, the long-planned updating of the Young Wizards series continues with the Ebooks Direct release of the fourth novel in the series: A Wizard Abroad.

Abroad, like So You Want to Be a Wizard (book 1 of the Young Wizards series), Deep Wizardry (book 2), and High Wizardry (book 3), now appears in a New Millennium Edition that's been extensively edited and updated for the present century.

You can find out more about the update project as a whole here. All nine books will be updated by the end of 1Q of 2013, and all brought into alignment with the new (2008-2011-based) timeline.

If you've already picked up copies of the first two New Millennium Editions, you can grab A Wizard Abroad here. Alternately, if you haven't yet acquired any of the new editions, we're offering a four-volume "box set" of the first New Millennium Editions at a slightly lower price than buying all four separately.
New Millennium Edition Four-book set

(For those interested: book 5 of the series, The Wizard's Dilemma, is now in edit and will be available around mid-February of 2013.)

A little about the story:


There's magic across the Atlantic...

NitaCallahan's mom and dad are beginning to get the idea that she and her fellow wizard Kit are "spending a little too much time together". So -- explaining that they want to give their daughter a little vacation from wizardry -- they pack Nita off for a month-long stay with her eccentric aunt at her farm in Ireland. But this turns out to have been a bad move on Nita's parents' part, since Ireland is even more steeped in magical doings than the United States.

Nita, initially certain that she's going to be bored out of her mind, soon finds that the serene beauty of the Irish landscape is deceptive. The ghosts of men and beasts and other beings -- including what seem to be heroes, ancient gods, and even the Powers that Be -- confront her at every turn. And her attention to strictly wizardly business during this crisis is somewhat distracted by the dark and edgy Ronan Nolan, a local teen wizard with uncomfortable secrets... and an agenda that might possibly include Nita.

 
Along with a group of Irish wizards both young and old, Nita and Kit (who joins her in Ireland) are drafted into an increasingly desperate battle with the Lone Power in yet another of Its many forms. The fight is a personal one, as always -- but this time there's more at stake than usual, as the ancient Enemy of life attempts to submerge the everyday Ireland in an older, more dangerous one: a place where human beings are fairy tales, and the legends and monsters of Celtic myth are a deadly reality....

Reviewers say:



"Duane seamlessly interweaves encounters with creatures from legend with glimpses of modern Irish life and teen culture... So clever and well reasoned that readers will have no trouble suspending disbelief." (School Library Journal)




"An engaging fantastical tale... Definitely worth reading." (Book Trust)




"Suitable for a wide range of readers. The colourful descriptions and imaginative characters create an exciting read... found it difficult to put the book down." (Platform)





To sign up for our shop's mailing list and be informed of new releases in the New Millennnium series (and other offerings), click here.
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Next Monday is Cyber Monday, and starting at 0800 UK/Irish time that day, our Ebooks Direct store will be launching the New Millennium Edition of Book 2 of the Young Wizards series, Deep Wizardry.

Like the NME of So You Want to Be a Wizard, this is a revised and updated version of Deep Wizardry, brought up to date for its new generation of 21st-century readers. Besides undergoing some general polishing and tidying, the novel has been revised to include modern technology more appropriate to the here and now than the original 1980s edition, and also continues the process of establishing a new, corrected timeline for the characters and events to carry the Young Wizards series forward into its new century.

There will also be a new cover for this edition by the magnificent Niko Geyer (who did the new cover for So You Want to Be a Wizard). Please note, however, that due to some temporary logistical problems at our Irish production end, that cover will not be available for the Cyber Monday launch. As soon as it is ready, purchasers will be notified so they can download copies of the book with the new cover.

The other two of the first four NMEs (High Wizardry and A Wizard Abroad) will be ready before Christmas: subscribers to the Ebooks Direct general notifications mailing list will be notified as soon as they're ready. If you'd like to be notified when they'll be available, please feel free to use the form below to sign up. All nine books in the Young Wizards series will be available in the New Millennium Editions by the end of the first quarter of 2013.

Also: before Cyber Monday comes Black Friday, and the Ebooks Direct store will be celebrating that weekend as well. Subscribers to our store's general notification mailing list will be offered special discounts for the Black Friday weekend. If you're interested in availing yourself of these, you can use the form below to sign up: a mailing with the pertinent information will be going out within the next 48 hours. (Just a general note about our list, by the way: we normally only send out a mailing once a month or so unless there's a significant release. Naturally you can opt out of the list at any time. And equally naturally, we'll never share your email address with anyone else. The very thought.)

Thanks in advance for your interest!


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Clickable Image Book 2 of the Clan WarsBook 1 of the Clan Wars

Now available at last in ebook format are [livejournal.com profile] petermorwood's two prequels to his Horse Lords series. Now, of course the Horse Lords' Book of Years purports to tell the true story behind the arrival of the Horse Lords in Alba. But as usual, when the victors write the histories, the truth has been known to suffer. Events that could prove embarrassing or even shameful to later generations get covered up, as do any suggestions that the heroic deeds of past generations might not have been so heroic after all...

Book 1, Greylady, begins to tell the real story of the arrival of the Horse Lords in the realm of Alba, and how they turned the Art Magic that they initially hated and feared into a terrible weapon that would first be used against the realms they conquered. It also tells of Bayrd al'Talvlyn, a young, landless and idealistic captain at the time of the Landing in Alba -- and the distant ancestor of Aldric Talvalin -- who suddenly finds himself catapulted into the murky political and magical maelstrom surrounding the subjugation of the native Albans. And in book 2, Widowmaker, the story continues into the time when the Art Magic begins to be turned to truly deadly purpose against the invaders from over sea. Bayrd al'Talvlyn struggles to preserve his new young clan from the enmity of the recently deposed sorcerer Kalarr cu Ruruc, while preserving his newly conquered land from those who want it, and those who want it back...

Greylady and Widowmaker are now available as ebooks in .mobi format (for the Kindle) and .ePub (for Sony Reader, Nook and the iPads and iPhones), joining the print editions of Widowmaker and Greylady presently available at Lulu.com.

Yes, they're my husband's books. Know what? They're hot. And I'm not just saying that because I married the guy. They're worth reading. Please go buy some. :)

(LJ friends: we’re celebrating the release with a 20% discount off everything in the store, including the 9–volume complete sets of the Young Wizards International edition ebooks. Use the discount code CLANWARS at checkout.)

dianeduane: (Default)

It's been in the works for a good while now, so it's a pleasure to announce that the new revised ebook edition of Stealing the Elf-King's Roses -- which anticipated CSI-style forensic drama and brought it for the first time into an SF/fantasy format -- is now available in the Ebooks Direct store.

(ETA: to celebrate the release of STEKR’s new ebook edition, we’re also offering a limited-time 30% discount on the nine-volume complete series package of the Young Wizards International Edition ebooks. See below for more details.)

The new edition of Stealing the Elf-King's Roses comes with an afterword that talks about the evolution of the book, and also with the worldbuilding notes that set up the histories of the sheaf of universes where the story's set.

From the afterword:

As usual, when you look at a work almost ten years after you’ve written it, you find things that the almost-ten-years-on writer really wants to fix. There are little edits all through this edition, and some material that was edited out in the original edition has been restored; but in particular, the last few chapters have been rewritten to clarify exactly what the heck is going on.

Previous readers of my work will know that I have no trouble at all playing Cosmic Conkers – i.e., banging two universes together and seeing which one breaks first -- but this situation was big and complex even by my standards.  I hope the revisions satisfy both old readers returning to a favorite work, and new ones reading it for the first time. (In particular, some readers have mentioned that they’ve never read the book because the original cover gave them the idea it was a romance. I hope the new cover will have remedied this.)

...Every now and then people ask me when I’m going to do another book in this worldset. Until now the answer had been, “I’m not sure where else I can go with this.” Now, though, after the revision, I begin to see some ways forward. We’ll see how this realization plays out over the next year or so.

-- While it's always dangerous to ask a writer what his or her favorite book is, I have to admit to having a soft spot for this one -- maybe because I spent more time working on the project than on almost any other in my career: so I'm delighted to be able to relaunch it now, in this new and improved version, in e-format. Right now the book is available in the two main ebook formats, .ePub (for the Nook, iPad and Sony Reader) and .mobi (for the Kindle and all MobiPocket-friendly readers). We'll be adding more formats to the selection at the Ebooks Direct store over the next week or so, and in early December we'll be launching the book in the Kindle Store at Amazon and other online facilities. You can read an excerpt from an early chapter here, if you like.

Also: as mentioned above, to celebrate the release we’ll also be offering, for a very limited time, a 30% discount on the complete nine-volume set of the Young Wizards International editions — as above, in .ePub and .mobi formats, and a bundled download that contains both. Just use the coupon code ROSES at checkout to get the discount. (Info on how to use discount codes at the store is here.)

Enjoy, all!

dianeduane: (Default)
Sort of. Maybe.

I don't care: I'm really excited about this. With reason, I think.

Sir Terry Pratchett and Rod Brown, Managing Director of Prime Focus Productions, announce that they have come to an agreement for the unprecedented and exclusive worldwide television rights to create brand new storylines for the iconic characters of Pratchett’s phenomenally successful Discworld series.

Terry’s universal success has seen him create one of the leading fantasy fiction franchises of all time, with 70 million worldwide sales of his 38 book Discworld titles (with a 39th being published in October 2011). Whilst there have been three successful mini series adaptations of his Discworld books made for television in the UK, this is the first time that Pratchett has granted a production company the international rights to his characters and world, for the creation of new stories exclusively for a television audience.

The main focus of the series will be set in the bustling, highly mercantile, largely untrustworthy and always vibrant city of Ankh-Morpork and will follow the day-to-day activities of the men, women, trolls, dwarves, vampires and several other species who daily pound its ancient cobbles (and, of course, Igor in the forensics department).

Terry commonly refers to the City Watch police force series as “the jewels in the Discworld Crown.” These richly developed and highly compelling characters will feature in a ‘crime of the week’ episodic storyline. As each weekly adventure unfolds, viewers will be taken on a ride through Pratchett’s genius imagination, with the author overseeing the creation of the series, where wild and exciting encounters with werewolves, dragons, dwarfs, trolls and golems and the classic heroes and villains, are an everyday occurrence…and where many of these characters even make outstanding crime fighters!


I think all fellow longstanding Discworld fans will forgive me a straightforward [swoon]SWOON[/swoon] here. :)

BRING IT.

And now we start Fantasy Casting... Alas that Pete Postlethwaite (or a younger version of him...) is no longer with us.
dianeduane: (Default)
In the heart of Dublin, something is killing the People of the Hills — and it’s going to take Ireland’s only superhero to stop it…

In honor of Saint Patrick's day... a taste of something Irish for #SampleSunday. 

The Irish Thing can hardly avoid being part of the “ground of being” of someone who’s lived in Ireland for nearly a quarter-century. That familiarity, though, with the way things really are here (insofar as anyone, “blow-in” or native, can ever tell what’s really going on in this island…) can make the inhabitant a little impatient with the perceptions of outsiders: particularly those who think Ireland is some kind of theme park that should be preserved to match its overflow into the last couple of centuries’ popular culture. I have actually stood in Dublin Airport and heard fellow Americans complaining that Ireland has broadband: as if it’s somehow polluting the cultural purity of the place. (I saw another American look around absolutely without irony or humor intended and say, disbelieving, “I thought it was supposed to be thatched.” The airport. Was supposed. To be thatched.)

…Yeah. So you will understand that when I was invited to participate in an anthology called Emerald Magic: Great Tales of Irish Fantasy, before I decided what story I wanted to write, I asked casually if I could see a list of the other contributors. When I saw the list, it was as I thought: only one of them (our former neighbor Morgan Llewellyn) had ever lived here. One of them (the excellent Tanith Lee) might have at least been here. And I knew in my bones what way everyone else would be going with their stories: the Celtic twilight, thatch everywhere, the soft green countryside, the old school Ireland and the old-school myths of a century or so back. I immediately thought, Somebody’s got to actually get into Dublin, where a third of the damn population lives! Somebody’s got to at least spend a little time in the here and now. …I’m going urban on this one.

So I wrote "Herself". The first part of the story appears here. Those eager to find out what happens can do so for US 99¢.
Those who want the whole anthology can have that too, for USD $5.99. The PayPal buttons are at the bottom of the page...

Enjoy, folks!  ...And don't dye the beer green.
dianeduane: (Default)



...(let's ease this down the page a little... no point in crowding the icon...)  :)




A goddess in the making, or a demon reborn...?


In the remote mountain village where she was born, Mariarta dil Alicg lives the untroubled life of a peasant girl...until, soon after a mysterious stranger's arrival, she starts to hear voices in the wind. The voices whisper strange secrets in Mariarta’s ears -- promising her the power to command the stormwind, hinting at an unknown magical heritage, and prophesying a fate marvelous past all Mariarta’s imaginings.

Then a curse falls on Mariarta's village, shattering the lives of her family and friends. Mariarta must set out across the mountain realm of Raetia in search of a way to break the curse -- while also hunting for the truth about the beautiful and terrible being who's trying to possess Mariarta's soul.

Mariarta’s search will lead her into hidden domains of sorcery both dreadful and wondrous, and will finally embroil the young woman in the growing rebellion against her land's cruel Austriac oppressors -- but not before Mariarta comes face to face at last with the immortal Lady of the Storms, and challenges her to one final battle for control of her life, her soul, and her destiny...


Reader advisory:

This novel rated PG-15 for mature themes, language (Romansch), and the reinvention of democracy


A Wind from the South is now available at the Kindle Store at Amazon.com (for USD $2.54) and at the DianeDuane.com online bookstore (for 1.99). (They have to fund Whispernet. We don't.)

.ePub editions are also available at the DianeDuane.com store for Nook / iPad users and others using ePub-friendly readers.
dianeduane: (Default)

For quite a long while now, the sold-but-never-published novel A Wind from the South has been available for free on its site at http://raetiantales.blogspot.com, and has done... okay. It's also recently become available, again for free, at the DianeDuane.com bookstore, and again, has done... okay, but no more than that. It hasn't been terribly visible to the outside world in either of those venues, perhaps.

So I've decided to try an experiment to see if the book's profile can be raised a little bit. I'm going to move the Kindle / .mobi version of AWFTS over to Amazon.com. Its price there will still be quite low, but not free. This means that I've got to match the Amazon.com price for the book locally -- otherwise the savage and merciless Amazon PriceBot will note the difference, and discount the book over there to undercut the DD.com price.

ETA:  Between February 28th and the evening of March 2, we offered free ebook downloads of A Wind from the South to all comers. Hundreds of you signed up at the DianeDuane.com online bookshop to download the free ebooks, and a significant portion of those hundreds signed up for our store newsletter -- so we'll be in touch with those of you who did, from time to time, to let you know what's new. To all of you who participated -- thanks very much! The book is now on sale at the DD.com store at $1.99 -- and at the Amazon.com Kindle store for $2.34 (I guess because they have to finance Whispernet somehow, and we don't).

.Epub versions of the book will only be available from the DianeDuane.com shop, mostly because B&N won't allow Amazon-style author self-publishing without a US bank account. (The minute they change this policy I'll be only too happy to sell .epubs out of BN.com.) The price of the epubs, too, will be rising... so if you're a Nook or other user of ePub-friendly readers, and you feel so inclined, please nip over to this page at the shop today and grab a copy before the price change.

The print version of the book remains available for the moment at Lulu.com, but this will be changing, as I get a sense that Amazon's print side will allow a significantly lower price for paperback versions. I'm investigating this and will do something about it one way or another when we start converting the ebook versions of the Young Wizards international editions to print versions for publication and sale via Amazon.

Thanks, everybody!

PS: Important for those who’ve ordered the book at the store: You may have had problems downloading your files. This was due to a bad setting in Zen Cart which caused the order processor to mark all free orders “pending”. Don’t ask me why it did this… Anyway, all orders have now been remarked as "processing”, which releases the files for download. Please log in to your store account and check your order history: it should show your file as available for download. If there are any further problems, please contact our Tech Lady using the store’s contact link. Also: check your confirmation email from the store to see if it shows an alternate download link that you can use — some of the later orders had this. (And sorry for the inconvenience, everybody. Zen Cart… argh. Just argh.)

*AWFTS was bought once in the UK, by Corgi -- where it was set aside after the editors who had championed it departed for greener fields -- and twice in Germany, for publishers which each time were bought by larger ones, and had their lists of books-to-be-published completely reorganized by new incoming staff who wanted to set their own marks on the reorganized houses' lists. It happens...
dianeduane: (Default)

Over the past few days we've had a bunch of people ask via email or my Twitter account if they can still subscribe to the project -- either because they want an early copy of the paperback, or just want to be a part of the project.

Well, sure, why not? So we've restored the subscription buttons at The-Big-Meow.com -- they're in the left-hand column, under the "search box." People who subscribe get immediate access to the online chapters (or can download ebook versions of the entire novel in Kindle / .mobi or Nook / iPad / ePub format) and will naturally have their names (or preferred handles or IDs) listed in the final print edition of the book as project supporters.

Also, the buttons have been updated for people who're already subscribed to the paperback version and want to upgrade to a hardcover, or want a hardcover with dustjacket as well. Those buttons are at this link.


Meanwhile, if you're a subscriber and haven't had a notification about the new username and password to the protected area (they've been changed), please use the contact form at DianeDuane.com and let the staff know -- they'll get back to you with the info ASAP.

Thanks again, everybody!

dianeduane: (Default)

There’s been no mention of this on the blog recently, so I thought I’d drop in a note about it now: I’ll be the Guest of Honor at StoCon ‘08 from the 1st through the 3rd of August. The convention venue is the Kulturhuset in Skarpnäck, a suburb of Stockholm (you can get there easily on the Metro: it’s about a 20–minute ride). If any of you are located locally, it’d be super to see you!

This is going to be a lot of fun, as while I’ve been to a lot of other cities in Europe, I’ve never yet made it up to any part of Scandinavia — and it’ll be super to be able to be there in the summertime.

(For those of Peter’s Swedish fans who might be wondering — unfortunately he won’t be able to make it: he presently has a work commitment that will be keeping him home.)

For some reason, the Google map I embedded below isn't displaying, but if you click on "View larger map" you'll see where the convention will be.



View Larger Map

dianeduane: (Default)
It's always fun when friends pass through the area. We spent the day yesterday with Bookslut's Jessa Crispin (and she spent the night at our place due to a non-manifesting bus-back-to-civilization) and had such a great time. (waves at Jessa!) Soon again!

And another mention elsewhere in Bookslut: So You Want to Be a Wizard is mentioned in Heather Smith's article on the covers of books with wizards on /in them, and (I think) wins.

We have arrived at the rarest example of wizard-based lit -- that with the classy, masterfully executed illustration.... For those who love stories about small children who run afoul of dragons, and yet are ashamed to admit so publicly, we suggest hiding this book under your pillow, next to your collection of small handguns. The current cover is simply too pleasant to contemplate altering.


:) So true. (Even if they get a little hung up on the dragon drool.) Yay Greg Swearingen!

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