Want me to blurb your book? Here are the conditions

Close-up of old manual typewriter with a document being typed: Terms of Service

Photo by Markus Winkler on Unsplash

Image description: Close-up of old manual typewriter with a document being typed: Terms of Service


One of my tenets as a writer (and human being) is generosity. There are times I’m not sure I would have made it—by which I don’t mean Made It, Baby! but survived—without others’ generosity, of time, money, attention, or encouragement. I remember every single person who helped me, or at least I try to. I’m determined to always do my best to reach down and help lift up others.

I get asked for blurbs a lot. I have no doubt some writers get asked more often, and some less; I have no doubt others are saints and superheroes and can read and blurb twelve books a month. I can’t. For me, those asks have become overwhelming. More and more often they are carefully crafted pleas designed to tug heartstrings—specifically my heartstrings (as I say, very carefully thought out). Often, they succeed—by which I don’t mean that I agree to give a blurb but that I feel like a heartless ogre when I say no.

Not long after I signed my contract for Ammonite, I went to a bookstore event for Ursula Le Guin. After the reading, when I took up a book for her to sign, I asked her if she would be willing to blurb my novel. She closed her eyes, sighed, opened them and told me gently she would consider writing a blurb only if a) the book was a first novel b) by a woman and c) requested by an acquiring editor at a trade press. At the time I vaguely understood her need for those conditions (though mainly I was relieved I met them). Now I understand them intimately.

So now it’s time for me to list my own conditions that a writer and their book must fit before Iwill consider giving a blurb:

  • All blurb requests must come from acquiring editors at a trade press
  • And go through my agent, Stephanie Cabot at Susanna Lea Associates.
  • If you send one to me directly via email, this website’s contact form, or a DM, I will ignore it.
  • From time to time, when deep into my own work, or seriously tired, or just want a holiday, I will direct Stephanie to not forward any requests—no matter how amazing, important, or urgent—for a while.
  • You will know that being ignored or refused is not personal, because you will know that I’m not a mind reader and could not anticipate your specific request before I brought down the portcullis.
  • I will not announce when and whether I’m open or closed to blurb requests.
  • When I am open to them, I will look with greater kindness on some books than others. In no particular order, the book must be:
    • written by an early-career writer
    • and/or midlist writer making a career change
    • who is a woman or nonbinary and/or
    • trans
    • queer
    • BIPOC
    • disabled
    • a former student

Of course, even if the book does fulfill all those conditions it will also have to sound like something I might actually enjoy. I like exciting fiction—fiction in which the protagonists *do* things, memoir, nature writing, and densely-argued, well-cited nonfiction. I do not like, for example, books whose protagonists endlessly process their angst or trauma or loll about in a state of ennui. The book will also have to reach me, at least two months before cover deadline, in either .mobi format or paper or (preferably) both.

Finally, even if the book sounds interesting enough for me to want, it also has to be enjoyable and well-written for me to offer a blurb.

So if you think you and your book might fit the bill, feel free to ask.

Competition winners!

When I announced a competition for guessing the most frequently used adjectives in reviews of Spear, I knew it could get complicated. First, there were some words and/or phrased such as Queer, Recommended, and variations on old-bones-new-story and too-short-wanted-more that were essentially ubiquitous and so, to me, not really fair; I discounted from my tally. Second, English is an odd language that allows some parts of speech to behave like others, so I guessed there might be a couple of judgement calls—and in fact there were, but not nearly enough to render the results unclear. And finally, third, I’m a human being with emotions and some words stand out more than others—I dearly wanted some words more than others to win. If it were up to me, for instance, the top adjectives would have been Dazzling or Stunning, or maybe Breathtaking or Brilliant, and there again Gorgeous and Mesmerising have a lot to recommend them…

But in the end it was all easy and clear. So here, in descending order (with frequency), are the top adjectives used in Spear reviews* up to and including May 3, that is, two weeks after publication:

  • Beautiful (24)
  • Lyrical/poetic (22)
  • Magical (15)
  • Delightful (11)
  • Gorgeous (11)
  • Lovely (11)
  • Fresh (10)
  • New (10)
  • Classic/Instant classic/Canon (9)
  • Genderqueer -bent -fluid (9)
  • Brilliant (8)
  • Fantastic (7)
  • Inclusive (7)
  • Original (7)
  • Spectacular (7)
  • Wonderful/Wondrous (7)
  • Breathtaking (6)
  • Compelling (6)
  • Flowing/Fluid (6)
  • Rich (6)
  • Spellbinding/Sorcery/Enchanting (6)
  • Stunning (6)
  • Dazzling (5)
  • Epic (5)
  • Intense (5)
  • Subversive (5)
  • Amazing (4)
  • Captivating (4)
  • Concise (4)
  • Dreamy/Dreamlike (4)
  • Effortless (4)
  • Humane (4)
  • Masterpiece/Masterful (4)
  • Mesmerising/Hypnotic (4)
  • Polyamorous (4)
  • Sensual/Sensuous (4)
  • Vivid (4)

In terms of readers’ guesses, there is one clear winner: nikkiel101, who went with Beautiful x 17. So nikkiel, you will get the signed and personalised hardcover, the pin, and a digital download of the audiobook just as soon as you get me your email and mailing address (please email me via the contact form). But there was a second reader, Roberta Arnold, who came very close, guessing Beautiful x 16 in one guess and Lyrical/Poetic x 22 in another. So, Roberta, if you’ll email me with your mailing address I’ll send you a hardcover and a pin, too.

And to everyone else: Thanks for playing!


*Either in professional journals or from those in the book profession such as fellow authors offering blurbs and librarians and booksellers responding to the publisher. I did not include podcasts or YouTube videos or reader reviews on platforms such as Goodreads or Amazon or personal blogs because there were just too many.

Last chance to enter the Spear adjective competition: Clue #16

Here is Clue #16, the FINAL clue in the One Adjective to Rule Them All competition. Words from Maria Dahvana Headley. Background illustration taken from one of Spear‘s interior artworks by Rovina Cai.

Image description: Square graphic in blue-grey showing in the upper left two women by a lake and, larger, in the lower right a menacing figure approaching with a spear. Centred in white text, “A screamingly hot canon-queering epic filled with bloody battles, and world-shaking magic.” And below that, in red-orange, “Maria Dahvana Headley, author of The Mere Wife and Beowulf: A New Translation”


This is your last chance to enter. I’ll close the competition tomorrow—probably around noon Pacific time—and announce the winner/s next week.

The competition is OPEN TO ANYONE IN THE WORLD, NO PURCHASE NECESSARY! The winner gets 3 prizes in one:

For the rules, and to enter, see One Adjective to Rule Them All. Please note that this is your last chance to enter the competition.

Make sure you check the list of possible adjectives—there are now 36 that have been used more than 4 times.

Comments on this post are off because the only guesses that count are those on the original blog post or emailed directly to me.

Spear adjective competition: Clue #15

Here is the penultimate clue, Clue #15, in the One Adjective to Rule Them All competition. Words from “Cold Iron and Piercing Beauty in Spear,” from the Chicago Review of Books, by Jake Casella Brookins. The background illustration is taken from one of Spear‘s interior artworks by Rovina Cai. The final clue will be tomorrow; I’ll close the competition end-of-day Friday, and announce the winner/s next week.


The competition is OPEN TO ANYONE IN THE WORLD, NO PURCHASE NECESSARY! The winner gets 3 prizes in one:

For the rules, and to enter, see One Adjective to Rule Them All. Please note that I’ve amended the rules so you can enter once a day—refining your guesses as the clues mount up!

Make sure you check the list of possible adjectives—because it keeps growing. There are now 36 adjectives that have been used more than 4 times.

Comments on this post are off because the only guesses that count are those on the original blog post or emailed directly to me.

Spear adjective competition: Clue #14

Here is Clue #14 in the One Adjective to Rule Them All competition. Words from a starred review in Shelf Awareness by Kerry McHugh. The background illustration is taken from one of Spear‘s interior artworks by Rovina Cai Cai.

Make sure you check the list of possible adjectives—because it keeps growing (I added two just yesterday). And check out previous clues.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is shelf-awareness.jpg

Image description: Square graphic in blue-grey showing in the upper left two women by a lake and, larger, in the lower right a menacing figure approaching with a spear. Centred in white text, “An atmospheric and lyrical tale steeped in historical detail. Griffith breathes vibrant and dazzling life into a stunning new take on Arthurian legend.” And below that, in red-orange, “Kerry McHugh, Shelf Awareness”


The competition is OPEN TO ANYONE IN THE WORLD, NO PURCHASE NECESSARY! The winner gets 3 prizes in one:

For the rules, and to enter, see One Adjective to Rule Them All. Please note that I’ve amended the rules so you can enter once a day—refining your guesses as the clues mount up!

DO CHECK OUT THE UPDATED LIST OF ADJECTIVES THAT HAVE BEEN USED MORE THAN FOUR TIMES! We have a couple more words that crossed the threshold…

Comments on this post are off because the only guesses that count are those on the original blog post or emailed directly to me.

Friday 4/29, 6:00 PM, Brick & Mortar, Redmond: In-person event!

Image description: Square graphic with grey background, a headshot of a short-haired white woman next to the cover of a novel, Spear by Nicola Griffith, and text: “Brick &Mortar presents Nicola Griffith author of Spear, Friday 29th at 6:00 pm. Find out more at brickandmortarbooks.com/events“.


Friday evening I’ll be doing my final event for Spear—live and in-person!—at Brick & Mortar Books in Redmond. I haven’t decided yet whether I’ll be doing a version of what I did at the Seattle Central Library on Wednesday or whether I’ll do a version of what I’m planning tonight with Kelley for Mysterious Galaxy.

It’s a mystery! But as always the real point, for me, will be sharing stories about the making of Spear, meeting you in-person, and finding out what reading gives you joy, what you hope for—or don’t like, or want more of—and signing your books. So bring questions! I love—love love love—to talk about my work!

Also, it’s Brick & Mortar’s kickoff for Independent Bookstore Weekend—so I hope you’ll turn out and support this wonderful store.

For more information, see Brick & Mortar’s event page.

See you tomorrow!

April 29, 2022 | 6:00 PM PT 
IN-PERSON EVENT
Brick & Mortar Books
7430 164th Ave NE, Suite B105 
Redmond, WA, 98052
Info/Register

Thursday 4/28, 7:00 PM, Mysterious Galaxy!

Tomorrow evening I’ll be doing my very first event for Mysterious Galaxy! I’ve always wanted to visit in person but have never had the opportunity—one day! Meanwhile, I have something special planned for you.

Tomorrow will be another first for me: a virtual event with my best and favourite person in the whole world, the woman I have dedicated every single one of my novels to: the one, the only, Kelley Eskridge!

Although this our first virtual in-conversation thing, we’ve done this in person many times. Kelley knows my work inside and out—and she knows me even better. So tomorrow you’ll be getting a seriously real, deep, and interesting conversation. Plus the usual reading from the book and audience Q&A. I really hope you can join us.

For more information, see Mysterious Galaxy’s event page. Or just go register directly.

See you tomorrow!

April 28, 2022 | 7:00 PM PT
VIRTUAL EVENT
Mysterious Galaxy
In conversation with Kelley Eskridge
Info/Register

Wednesday 4/27, 7:00 PM, Seattle Central Library: In-person event!

Image description: Square graphic with pink moiré borders top and bottom and on the left, a black and white headshot of a short-haired white woman and on the right the cover of a novel, Spear, showing an illustration of a Celtic hanging bowl bubbling in the flames and images of people curling up out of the fumes.


Tomorrow evening I’ll be doing my first live, in-person event for Spear (simultaneously live-streamed), at SPL’s Microsoft Auditorium downtown at the Central Library:

This event is being presented in person at Central Library, with the option to view the livestream from home. It is presented in partnership with Elliott Bay Book Company, and is supported by The Seattle Public Library Foundation and the Gary and Connie Kunis Foundation. Thanks to media sponsor The Seattle Times.

There will be ASL interpretation and CART transcription for this event. The event will be recorded, captioned and then posted on the Library’s YouTube channel after the event.

For this one, I won’t have an interlocutor: it will just be me and Spear and the audience. In some ways it will be a throwback to pre-pandemic days when I always did these events on my own—reading from the book, and talking about why I wrote it, what I hoped for it, what was tricky, what was a delight, followed by a Q&A, then signing books and chatting to readers. In other ways, of course—such as the live-streaming component—it will be different.

But the essentials that I love will be the same: meeting you in-person, finding out what reading gives you joy, how you’re doing, what you hope for—or don’t like, or want more of—and signing your books. So do bring questions! I love—love love love—to talk about my work!

For more information, see SPL’s event page. Or just go register directly.

See you tomorrow!

April 27, 2022 | 7:00 PT
IN PERSON EVENT
Seattle Public Library (Hosted by Elliot Bay Book Co)
Central Library, Microsoft Auditorium
1000 Fourth Ave
Seattle, WA 98104
Info/Register

Spear adjective competition: Clue #13

Here is Clue #13 in the One Adjective to Rule Them All competition. Words from a review by Andrea Rittschof in The Nameless Zine. The background illustration is taken from one of Spear‘s interior artworks by Rovina Cai.

Make sure you check the list of possible adjectives—because it keeps growing. And check out previous clues.

Image description: Square graphic in blue-grey showing a great, Celtic-style hanging bowl over the flames with smoke and steam fuming up, forming images of a woman in the woods, a fortified wall, a horse and rider, and more.. Centred in white text, “Spear is both subversive and brilliant… It is sublime, a work of art.” And below that, in red-orange, “Andrea Rittschof, The Nameless Zine”


The competition is OPEN TO ANYONE IN THE WORLD, NO PURCHASE NECESSARY! The winner gets 3 prizes in one:

For the rules, and how to enter, see One Adjective to Rule Them All. Please note that I’ve amended the rules so you can enter once a day—refining your guesses as the clues mount up!

DO CHECK OUT THE UPDATED LIST OF ADJECTIVES THAT HAVE BEEN USED MORE THAN FOUR TIMES! We have a couple more words that crossed the threshold…

Comments on this post are off because the only guesses that count are those on the original blog post or emailed directly to me.

Today: Harvard Bookstore & Third Place Books, 4 :00 PM PT/7:00 PM ET, with Alix Harrow

In just a few hours, I’ll be talking with Alix Harrow for Harvard Bookstore, cooping with Seattle’s own Third Place Books (which now has a stack of signed copies specially for those who register for this event). And, oh, do we have plans for you!

Alix and I are both fascinated by the uses and abuses of retold tales, the way cliches can be both useful and dangerous. We both have Many Thoughts on subverting national fantasies—and fantasy in general—plus what works and what doesn’t, and why. Honestly, I think we could do five of these things and still have more to say, so it’ll be a jam-packed evening, fast and furious. Especially as we’ll also be gushing about each other’s work. (If you haven’t read A Spindle Splintered, you really should.)

So do please come listen to us talk about the past and present, representation and art. Bring a friend—bring two friends! Bring questions—lots of questions! I AM SERIOUS: BRING QUESTIONS! For me, part of the point of these things is to find out what you do and don’t like, what you want to know, what you don’t much care about. This is your chance to find out what you want to know. I really do like talking about my work.

Register here. It’s free.

See you soon!

April 25, 2022 | 4:00 PM PT/7:00 PM ET
VIRTUAL EVENT	 
Harvard Bookstore and Third Place Books
In Conversation w/Alix E. Harrow
Platform: Zoom Webinar			
Info/Register

Spear—plus furred, finned, feathered, and fluttery friends

When Hild came out, readers began to send me pictures of their pets variously disapproving, disdaining, destroying, dozing on or delighting in the book. Before Spear came out I made a few graphics of the ARCs with various beasts—T. rex, a horse, a hedgehog, a leopard—and now, five days after publication, others are continuing that noble tradition. So far we have a beagle, a parrot, butterflies, and several cats. But there’s always room for more!

So send me a picture of your beast/s—real or creative (I have a picture somewhere of the Hild hardcover surmounted by a crocheted tardigrade)—and I’ll retweet or repost or add to this post (which I’ll turn into a page).

Happy Sunday, and happy reading to you and your furry, finned, feathered, fiendish, and fluttery friends.

Algernon, always coordinated and fashion-forward — Angelique Corthals
@readingbeagle Instagram
Solomon, who fortunately doesn’t have to choose — @yetanotherkelly Instagram
Romper Stomper, monstrously possessive
@bookish_black_hole Instagram
Stella, star of the show — Lydia Zoells
Bony, being patient
Charlie — who does not like to share his (cough) wheelchair
Marketing moggies of Tordotcom
Hedgepig, heading for safety
Kitty, like Romper Stomper, does not like to share

Spear adjective competition: Clue #12

Here is Clue #12 in the One Adjective to Rule Them All competition. Words from a review in Publishers Weekly. The background illustration is taken from one of Spear‘s interior artworks by Rovina Cai.

Image description: Square graphic in blue-grey showing a background image of someone in 6th-century armour, sitting on a stone blowing on a dandelion puffball. The seeds rise like smoke, hiding their face. Centred in white text, “Fresh, emotionally immediate, steeped in period texture…a genuine pleasure.” And below that, in red-orange, “Publishers Weekly”


The competition is OPEN TO ANYONE IN THE WORLD, NO PURCHASE NECESSARY! The winner gets 3 prizes in one:

For the rules, and how to enter, see One Adjective to Rule Them All. Please note that I’ve amended the rules so you can enter once a day—refining your guesses as the clues mount up!

DO CHECK OUT THE UPDATED LIST OF ADJECTIVES THAT HAVE BEEN USED MORE THAN FOUR TIMES! We have a couple more words that crossed the threshold…

Comments on this post are off because the only guesses that count are those on the original blog post or emailed directly to me.

Today: Women and Children First, 2:00pm PT/4:00 pm CT, with Riva Lehrer

In just a few hours: my third event for SPEAR! I’ll be talking with Riva Lehrer, artist (she made the wonderful portrait of me as a snow leopard), memoirist, and disability activist. Riva and I have done a couple of events together before. Come listen to us talk about the past and present, representation and art. So join us! Bring a friend—bring two friends! Bring questions—lots of questions! I love talking about my work.

Register here.

See you soon!

April 22, 2022 | 2:00 PM PT/4:00 PM CT
VIRTUAL EVENT	
Women and Children First (Chicago)
In Conversation w/Riva Lehrer
Platform: Crowdcast
Info/Register

Today: Books in Common, 6:30pm PT, with Nisi Shawl

In just a few hours: my second event for SPEAR! I’ll be talking with Nisi Shawl, author, editor and all around fabulous person. As Nisi says, “Need some magical mists, knock-out sword fights, and Early Medieval lesbian love affairs? Come on over!” So bring questions! Bring lots of questions! I love talking about my work.

Register here.

See you soon!

April 21, 2022 | 6:30 PM PT
VIRTUAL EVENT
Books In Common NW (Paulina Springs Books, Sisters, OR; Madison Books, Seattle, WA; and Country Bookshelf in Bozeman, MT)
In Conversation w/Nisi Shawl
Platform: Zoom Webinar
Info/Register

Spear adjective competition: Clue #11

Here is Clue #11 in the One Adjective to Rule Them All competition. Words from a review by Margaret Kingsbury in Buzzfeed. The background illustration is taken from one of Spear‘s interior artworks by Rovina Cai.

Image description: Square graphic in blue-grey showing a silhouette of a rider on a horse surrounded by wind or smoke. Centred in white text, “This immersive and inclusive retelling is breathtakingly beautiful, sharing a vision of Arthurian legend that dismisses earlier retellings in favor of nance and joy.” And below that, in red-orange, “Margaret Kingbury, Buzzfeed”


The competition is OPEN TO ANYONE IN THE WORLD, NO PURCHASE NECESSARY! The winner gets 3 prizes in one:

For the rules, and how to enter, see One Adjective to Rule Them All. Please note that I’ve amended the rules so you can enter once a day—refining your guesses as the clues mount up!

DO CHECK OUT THE UPDATED LIST OF ADJECTIVES THAT HAVE BEEN USED MORE THAN FOUR TIMES! We have a couple more words that crossed the threshold…

Comments on this post are off because the only guesses that count are those on the original blog post or emailed directly to me.

Today: Tubby and Coos, 4pm PT/ 6pm CT

In just a few hours, my first public event for SPEAR! I’ll be talking to Candice, the owner of Tubby & Coos in New Orleans, about all things Arthurian. Then I’ll read a juicy battle scene, then answer questions. So bring questions! Bring lots of questions! I love talking about my work.

Register here.

See you soon!

April 20, 2022 | 4:00 PM PT/6:00 PM CT		
VIRTUAL EVENT
Tubby & Coos Bookstore (New Orleans, LA)
In Conversation w/Candice Huber (Store Owner)
Platform: Streamyard to Crowdcast/FB Live
Info/Register

Spear adjective competition: Clue #10

Here is Clue #10 in the One Adjective to Rule Them All competition. Words from a review by Gary Wolfe in Locus (it’s a great review!). The background illustration is taken from one of Spear‘s interior artworks by Rovina Cai.

Image description: Square graphic in blue-grey showing a figure kneeling in the shallows of a river, leaning their weight on a sword. In the upper third of the image, the figure is framed by bleak, bare trees. Beneath her, under her knee and barely visible, there is the hint of another submerged figure. Below this is the figure’s reflection in the moving water—darker and sharper and violently spattered and streaked with loose brushstrokes that cascade down the rest of the image. Centred in white text, “Mesmeriszing… A lyrical bildungsroman drenched in the natural world. A marvelously concise epic entirely Griffith’s own.” And below that, in red-orange, “Gary Wolfe, Locus”


The competition is OPEN TO ANYONE IN THE WORLD, NO PURCHASE NECESSARY! The winner gets 3 prizes in one:

For the rules, and how to enter, see One Adjective to Rule Them All. Please note that I’ve amended the rules so you can enter once a day—refining your guesses as the clues mount up!

DO CHECK OUT THE UPDATED LIST OF ADJECTIVES THAT HAVE BEEN USED MORE THAN FOUR TIMES! We have a couple more words that crossed the threshold…

Comments on this post are off because the only guesses that count are those on the original blog post or emailed directly to me.

Spear is here!!

My author copies finally arrived! And I am thrilled: Spear is a very handsome book indeed. Obviously it looks fabulous—and I’ll talk more about that in a minute—but what really struck me is how it feels in the hand. First of all, the jacket has a seriously matte, tactile feel, with a little process on my name and title—not a lot; it’s subtle, just enough to feel substantial. But what’s really lovely is the size and weight.

When I was a teen I preferred reading library hardcovers; paperbacks were okay but they felt flimsy. Over the years, though, I’ve found my preference changing to trade paperbacks and I realise it’s a size issue. Many modern hardbacks are massive and heavy, too unwieldy for comfortable reading unless you have big hands, which I don’t.1 This book is perfect! I could hold it for hours—which of course I wouldn’t need to because it’s only 184 pages long.

Given its length I worried the book might feel too thin, but look: it’s beautifully proportioned. And the spine of the jacket is very attractive. (Whenever I hold it I just want to stroke it.)

We’re always told not to judge a book by its cover but, hey, we all do. But I can tell you, this book just gets better and better the more you explore.

The front flap is nice—nothing massively special but nice:

Ditto the back, and here I’m pleased by the colour coordination: Black and white photo with black end papers; red titles to match the red title and author name on the front:

But it’s when you start to take the jacket off that you start to get a sense of the glories within:

Just look at that foil stamping—see how it glows! You can see the individual rivets on the shield. The spine is shiny, too, but I couldn’t get as good a picture of it.

Then there are the interior illustrations by Rovina Cai: five altogether: the perfect moody complement to the text.

The whole thing is just very nicely designed: exactly what a hardcover should be. I hope you enjoy reading it as much I enjoyed writing it.

Buy it anywhere books are sold. But if you want a signed, personalised hardcover, then order from Phinney Books, Third Place Books, University Books, Elliott Bay Book Company, or Brick & Mortar before tomorrow at noon. Anything after that—except if you get them signed in person—will be just a plain signature. But, as you’ve seen, the book itself is far from plain, very far…

IndieBound | Amazon.com | Bookshop.org | Barnes & Noble | Apple | Amazon.co.uk


1 This, apparently, surprises people. Perhaps because I have big shoulders and muscled arms people expect big shovel hands at the end of those arms, but, no; my hands are small.

Spear adjective competition: Clue #9

Here is Clue #9 in the One Adjective to Rule Them All competition. Words from a review in Kirkus. The background illustration is taken from one of Spear‘s interior artworks by Rovina Cai.

Image description: Square graphic in blue-grey showing a great, Celtic-style hanging bowl over the flames with smoke and steam fuming up, forming images of a woman in the woods, a fortified wall, a horse and rider, and more. Centred in white text, “Griffith mines the Matter f Britain while turning tropes upside down. A fresh, often lovely take on Arthurian legend.” And below that, in red-orange, “Kirkus”


The competition is OPEN TO ANYONE IN THE WORLD, NO PURCHASE NECESSARY! The winner gets 3 prizes in one:

For the rules, and how to enter, see One Adjective to Rule Them All. Please note that I’ve amended the rules so you can enter once a day—refining your guesses as the clues mount up!

DO CHECK OUT THE UPDATED LIST OF ADJECTIVES THAT HAVE BEEN USED MORE THAN FOUR TIMES! We have a couple more words that crossed the threshold…

Comments on this post are off because the only guesses that count are those on the original blog post or emailed directly to me.

The Legendary Tour!

Most of my events will be virtual—most (but not all!) in conversation with others. I’m doing two in-person events—both solo presentations: one in downtown Seattle at the Seattle Public Library’s Microsoft Auditorium, and one at Brick & Mortar, in Redmond. It’s been an age since I did a live event on the Eastside, so that should be fun.

Some of the virtual events (maybe all; I haven’t checked) require preregistration, so follow the links and then the instructions.

April 20, 2022 | 4:00 PM PT/6:00 PM CT		
VIRTUAL EVENT
Tubby & Coos Bookstore (New Orleans, LA)
In Conversation w/Candice Huber (Store Owner)
Platform: Streamyard to Crowdcast/FB Live
Info/Register

April 21, 2022 | 6:30 PM PT
VIRTUAL EVENT
Books In Common NW (Paulina Springs Books, Sisters, OR; Madison Books, Seattle, WA; and Country Bookshelf in Bozeman, MT)
In Conversation w/Nisi Shawl
Platform: Zoom Webinar
Info/Register

April 22, 2022 | 2:00 PM PT/4:00 PM CT
VIRTUAL EVENT	
Women and Children First (Chicago)
In Conversation w/Riva Lehrer
Platform: Crowdcast
Info/Register
				
April 23, 2022 | 4:30 PM PT/7:30 PM ET
VIRTUAL EVENT 
Charis Books & More (Decatur, GA)
In Conversation w/Ed Hall
Platform: Crowdcast
Info/Register

April 25, 2022 | 4:00 PM PT/7:00 PM ET
VIRTUAL EVENT	 
Harvard Bookstore and Third Place Books
In Conversation w/Alix E. Harrow
Platform: Zoom Webinar			
Info/Register

April 27, 2022 | 7:00 PT
IN PERSON EVENT
Seattle Public Library (Hosted by Elliot Bay Book Co)
Central Library, Microsoft Auditorium
1000 Fourth Ave
Seattle, WA 98104
Info/Register

April 28, 2022 | 7:00 PM PT
VIRTUAL EVENT
Mysterious Galaxy
Solo Presentation
Info/Register

April 29, 2022 | 6:00 PM PT 
IN-PERSON EVENT
Brick & Mortar Books
7430 164th Ave NE, Suite B105 
Redmond, WA, 98052
Info/Register

The following bookstores will have signed books for sale—personalised to order while you’re there (for the SPL/EBBC event and the B&M event) or already prepared if you’ve preordered (Phinney Books), or to buy later if you’re not there in person. Some will also come with enamel pins!

  • Phinney Books, Seattle
  • University Bookstore, Seattle
  • Elliott Bay Book Company, Seattle
  • Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park
  • Brick & Mortar, Redmond

All other bookstores in the above list will have signed bookplates. They may also have enamel pins while supplies last.

I hope you come. I’ll be reading sometimes, sometimes not, and depending on my interlocutor talking about everything under the sun. I love doing these things—but what I love most is talking to readers. So come! Bring questions! Bring a friend! Or two!

See you soon!

Spear adjective competition: Clue #8

Here is Clue #8 in the One Adjective to Rule Them All competition. Words from a review on Grimdark. The background illustration is taken from one of Spear‘s interior artworks by Rovina Cai.

Image description: Square graphic in blue-grey showing someone in a grave, their eyes covered and a bloody knife on their chest, and surrounded by forget-me-knots and flying petals. Centred in white text, “Gorgeous… It blew my mind.” And below that, in red-orange, “Fabienne Schwizer, Grimdark”


The competition is OPEN TO ANYONE IN THE WORLD, NO PURCHASE NECESSARY! The winner gets 3 prizes in one:

For the rules, and how to enter, see One Adjective to Rule Them All. Please note that I’ve amended the rules so you can enter once a day—refining your guesses as the clues mount up!

DO CHECK OUT THE UPDATED LIST OF ADJECTIVES THAT HAVE BEEN USED MORE THAN FOUR TIMES! We have a couple more words that crossed the threshold…

Comments on this post are off because the only guesses that count are those on the original blog post or emailed directly to me.

Fab podcast interview!

In which—after Jason Concepcion and Rosie Knight say lovely things about HILD (1:06:00)—we talk (1:15:06) about SPEAR and HILD, my fantasy origin story & centring the Other, Talking Rabbits, nature & journeys, queer lit and #criplit, answering questions with hard work, guessing, and alcohol, MENEWOOD, and why for me writing is the best job in the world. Listen to X-Ray Vision here.

Spear adjective competition: Clue #7

Here is Clue #7 in the One Adjective to Rule Them All competition. Words from a blurb by Hugo award-winning John Scalzi. The background illustration is taken from one of Spear‘s interior artworks by Rovina Cai—also a Hugo Award winner!

Image description: Square graphic in blue-grey showing a silhouette of a woman on a horse surrounded by wind or smoke. Centred in white text, “There is magic in Nicola Griffith’s words. Prepared to be enchanted.” And below that, in red-orange, “John Scalzi, author of The Kaiju Preservation Society.”


The competition is OPEN TO ANYONE IN THE WORLD, NO PURCHASE NECESSARY! The winner gets 3 prizes in one:

For the rules, and how to enter, see One Adjective to Rule Them All. Please note that I’ve amended the rules so you can enter once a day—refining your guesses as the clues mount up!

Comments on this post are off because the only guesses that count are those on the original blog post or emailed directly to me.

Listen to an excerpt from Spear

I just found that the publisher’s Spear page includes a link to a five-minute audio clip from near the beginning of the book. A frightened mother is telling stories of the Tuath Dé to a nameless child…

Spear adjective competition: Clue #6

Here is Clue #6 in the One Adjective to Rule Them All competition. Words from a blurb by Bruce Holsinger. The background illustration is taken from one of Spear‘s interior artworks by the talented Rovina Cai.

Image description: Square graphic in blue-grey showing in the upper left two women by a lake and, larger, in the lower right a menacing figure approaching with a spear. Centred in white text, “Just dazzling!” And below that, in red-orange, “Bruce Holsinger, author of The Gifted School”


The competition is OPEN TO ANYONE IN THE WORLD, NO PURCHASE NECESSARY! The winner gets 3 prizes in one:

  • A signed, personalised first edition first printing of Spear
  • A luscious enamel pin specially designed by Forensics & Flowers
  • A digital download of the audiobook, narrated by moi

For the rules and how to enter, see One Adjective to Rule Them All. Please note that I’ve amended the rules so you can enter once a day—refining your guesses as the clues mount up!

Comments on this post are off because the only guesses that count are those on the original blog post or emailed directly to me.