Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Upcoming Utah Appearances

Would you like to get a signed copy of Hazzardous Universe?  Julie and I have several signings and events planned in Northern Utah in June.   Here's our schedule for the first half of the month.  We will announce more events very soon.

Friday, June 3 - 11am -1pm, Book Signing at the Salt Lake City Costco
Saturday, June 4 - 10am-Noon, Book Signing at the South Ogden Costco
Thursday, June 9 - 11am -1pm, Book Signing at the Sandy Costco
Friday, June 10 - 11am -1pm, Book Signing at the South Ogden Costco
Saturday, June 11, Ogden Arts Festival
Friday, June 17, Write On Workshop, Westminster College, Salt Lake City
Saturday, June 18 - 11am -1pm, Book Signing at the Salt Lake City Costco

Sunday, May 29, 2011


Yesterday, while at CONduit XXI, I had the opportunity to participate in "Monster in an Hour."  This is one of my favorite events at the convention.  It works like this: several artists stand at easels in front of an audience, the audience makes suggestions for the monster, and then the artist creates the monster on the spot.  Today, the art will be auctioned off for charity. 

This year the audience came up with some interesting ideas, things like one eye, horns, and a purse.  Yes, a purse. I'm not sure where that idea came from, but we had to put it in the picture. I didn't get a chance to photograph my drawing, but I will say it was highly influenced by the luck dragon in Never Ending Story. 

Today I was thinking about my Monster drawing and decided to give it another shot.  So I doodled a new character, loosely based on the same ideas . . . except the purse. Logic tells me that monsters don't like purses.  Purses hold mobile phones, money, make-up . . . things monsters have no use for.  I mean, can you imagine Godzilla in lip stick?  Or Frankenstein using a mobile phone? Hmm, on second thought, that might be quite funny.  Anyway, I skipped the purse.

Now I could use some help, because this little monster needs a name.  Feel free to comment and leave a name suggestion.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

CONduit 2011

Julie and I will be attending CONduit 2011 in Salt Lake City over Memorial Day weekend at the Downtown Radisson Hotel.   Here's our schedule . . .

Friday, May 27, 2011

- Drawing fabric. How to draw clothing, capes, drapes and other fabric so it drapes and flows. In other words, how to draw fabric so that it doesn’t look like it’s made of wood.
(Brian Hailes (M), Zachary Hill, Kevin Wasden, A. J. Bell)   
Note:  Due to a scheduling conflict, I won't be able to attend this one.  Sorry.  But Brian and co. will do a fabulous job. 
5:00 PM
- How Not To Talk Down To Your Audience. How do you find the right balance between talking over your reader’s head and treating them like a child? Especially when they ARE children?
(Jessica Day George, Dan Willis (M), Bryce Moore, Julie Wright, Kathleen Dalton-Woodbury)
Saturday, 28 May 2011

 10:00 AM
- *The New Face Of Self-Promotion. It used to be the publisher did most of the book promoting. Now, it’s up to the author. What should you do to sell your own book? How can you atrract readers?
(Michaelbrent Collings (M), Jaleta Clegg, Jess Smart Smiley, Tristi Pinkston, Larry Correia, Steve Diamond, Kevin Wasden)
Note:  Prepare yourself to learn all the secrets to great self-promotion . . . or at least get a few tips on how to sell your book in New Hampshire. 

11:00 AM
- Writing/illustrating Graphic Novels
Graphic novels use both art and words to tell their stories. In a well-designed piece, the elements work together, seamlessly passing the story between the visuals, descriptions and dialogue. But learning to
balance, reinforce and illustrate the plot can be a juggling act. Come listen to our experienced panelists share their knowledge.
(Brian Hailes, Blake Casselman, Andrew Adams, A. J. Bell, Jess Smart Smiley, Kevin Wasden (M)) 
Note:  That "M" means I've been chosen to be the moderator.  If any panelists start to fistfight, I am required to throw myself between them.
- Comic Art
What are the techniques for drawing comics? How does comic art differ from other types of art? Find out here what skills are needed to make great comics.
(Brian Hailes, Jess Smart Smiley (M), Emily Sorensen, Kevin Wasden, Rebecca Jensen, Travis Walton, A. J. Bell) 

1:00 PM
- SIGNINGS (1 – 2 PM): Tracy Hickman, Michael Young, Peter Orullian, Jaleta Clegg, Kevin Wasden, Julie Wright 
Note:  Hazzardous Universe retails for $12.99.  Just in case you were wondering. 

2:00 PM
- What A Kid Wants In A Story
Some adults have a tendency to talk down to kids. Some writers do it, too. Or they don’t know what a kid looks for in a book. Our panel “gets it.” Come hear more about this growing genre.
(J. Scott Savage (M), Jason Shumate, Dene Low, LuAnn Staheli, Bryce Moore, Julie Wright, Jessica Day George) 
Note:  Personally, I think all kids want a story with aliens, spaceships, magic, ray guns, and impending destruction . . . and I think it should be called Hazzardous Universe.

4:00 PM
- Monster in an Hour
Come enjoy our yearly contest waged between several artists drawing from audience suggestions Cooks have “Iron Chef” with a secret ingredient that they have to incorporate into their instant creations. Selected CONduit artists have “Monster in a Hour” where they take their audience-selected challenges and create a masterpiece. Their pieces will be sold in the art auction on Sunday to benefit our charity.
(Mike Oberg, Brian Hailes, Kevin Wasden, Sarah B. Seiter)
Note:  My annual Dr. Frankenstein moment! 

7:00 PM
- Artists on Art
Four of our favorite artists talk about art: creation, marketing, business. You’ve admired their work, now hear what they have to say on the subject.
(Brian Hailes, Howard Tayler (M), Kevin Wasden, A. J. Bell, Travis Walton)

- Walking the razor’s edge between hurting your character for story and hurting your character for sensationalism. Why do you want to put your character through the wringer in the first place?
(L. E. Modesitt, Jr., T. Wingate, Julie Wright (M))

1:00 PM
- Art Auction
Going, going, Gone! Come to the art auction to defend your final bid
or whisk that desired piece away from your fellow bidders.
(Mike Oberg, Joe Monson)
Note:  Monster in an Hour art will be available.

2:00 PM
- Art Auction, cont.
Going, going, Gone! Come to the art auction to defend your final bid or whisk that desired piece away from your fellow bidders.
(Mike Oberg, Joe Monson)

- Romancing the Ghost: Paranormal romance
What is the draw of loving the dead and undead? Is it the moral and emotional turmoil that forbidden love can kindle? The idea that there is someone we can’t really fully have? Or is it another manifestation of loving the ‘other’?
(Ann Chamberlin, Julie Wright, Ann Sharp, Elisabeth Waters (M))

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


I had a few minutes after class today, so I painted a quick sketch of Laney from Hazzardous Universe.  I suppose this is what she would have looked like a few years before the events in the books, which is a year or two before she became the outlaw she is today.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

In the News

A little while ago Julie and I were interviewed by Deseret News' Hikari Loftus.  The interview was published today.  Here's a link

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Basking in Success. . . just for a moment.

First, I would like to let everyone know that on May 7th, Julie won the 2010 Whitney Award for Best Romance Novel.  I want to publicly congratulate Julie for her accomplishment.  She's awesome, and I don't think I'm biased one bit.  :)

Also, thank you to everyone who has supported Hazzardous Universe.  The book has reached Deseret Book's Top 10 books for kids, ages 9-12.  Just ahead of it are books by Brandon Mull, James Dashner, and Obert Skye . . . that's pretty good company to hang out with.

And, if you're wondering, Hazzardous Universe 2 is currently in the editing stage.  We'll soon start the cover art and interior illustrations.  Stay tuned for more information.