Month: October 2004

Letter from Kelsey

Letter from Kelsey

Hey Todd!

You reading to a recent fan of the Dragonriders of Pern books. I can’t wait to get Dragonsblood — when it will come out?

And I have some questions for you:

How is it to be Anne McCaffrey’s son?

Growing up when she published the books, did you get a taste of her limelight?

Were you able to read the books she was working for you?

And, no offense at all to you, is Anne going to write more of the Dragonriders of Pern or has she permenately handing the torch to you?

Either way,you can catch me reading what future stories you will write.


Hi Kelsey,

Glad to hear that you’re a recent fan of the Pern books. Dragonsblood is due out January 25th, 2005.

How is it to be Anne McCaffrey’s son? I suspect it’s a lot less spectacular than you might imagine. If you want a pretty good idea, read “Dragonholder” which is the book I wrote about Mum and how she thought of the dragons (among other things).

For all that those who’ve read Mum’s books love them and are eager to see more, Mum doesn’t really have a huge limelight, so it wasn’t too big a deal. I did get a lot of people telling me how much they liked her books but as I liked them too, there wasn’t a lot to say.

I learned that it’s a mistake to read a book while someone’s working on it. Books are fragile things, particularly when being created and the slightest criticism can put a serious damper on a writer’s fragile faith in their works. However, I did read “The White Dragon” as Mum finished each page and was eager for more (that, in itself, can be tiring for a writer, too!).

I don’t know if Mum’s going to write more or not. It takes a great deal of energy and emotional energy to write a book and Mum’s 78. Every time you read a book that makes you cry with sorrow or shout with joy, the writer lived that emotion — probably more intensely than you did. Writing takes as much out of you as it gives back. You might write to Mum and ask her yourself.


Letter from Kathleen (a different one!)

Letter from Kathleen (a different one!)

Well I’ve trashed my story. Not really. I wasn’t enjoying the first book, second book, and I haven’t touched the third since… June. I don’t know. I just don’t feel like I’m cut out to be a writer half the time! But I’m still gonna go with it. I just hope someday my insane idea I call stories go somewhere. ^-~ As for art tabling somewhere. I’ve given up for now. I’ll pick up the idea in a month or too. After the idea of failing math doesn’t ache to much. And I ended up just deciding to be Eternal Sailor Mars and Card Captor Sakura for next Dragon*Con. Mom and I are already throwing together ideas. Know where I can find a metal forehead taira thing? XD

Till next time.



You’re doing well that you only feel like you’re not cut out to be a writer only half the time. Everyone, including JK Rowling (check out her Edinburgh interview) go through a period where they hate their book. The trick is to get through it. You’re an artist, you know about using erasers. Allow yourself to be bad — and correct the mistakes later.

Congrats on the costume idea!


Letter from Kathleen

Letter from Kathleen

Dear Todd
Loved the book you wrote about your Mum. Have loved her books since I fell (literally) over them some years ago. Have devoured everything I can lay hand to several times loving all of them. The Pern books are fabulous and await eagerly for the next instalment (January is just too far away!) Have to say that The Coelura rates up there with me as a darn fine yarn as well. Any chance of a visit Down Under to The Best Place in the World, Australia (yes I am biased) by either or both you or your Mum?

I’ll be there with bells on if its an official visit. Keep up the good work. By the way great website.



Dear Kathleen,

Thank you very much! I’m glad you liked the book.

I’d love to visit Australia but I doubt it’s in my near future. I suspect that the flight time, in either direction, would be too much for Mum, nowadays.

I think you get the lovely UK cover for Dragonsblood which was done by Les Edwards, so you’ve that to look forward to.


Letter from Doug

Letter from Doug

Mr. McCaffery:

I read your FAQ, and your sainted mother’s FAQ, but my question wasn’t there.

Before I waste your time with my personal story of how your mother’s story of Pern came into my life and stayed with me though a 14 year of military career, college, being a parent, and is still with me now as I work at a university and set up web sites for local people that cannot afford the wild rates charged by most providers, let me tell you why I am writing you.

I have a book I want to read. It hasn’t been written, so I am writing it. I know you and your mother could do a much better job. It just seems to be begging to be written.

I was taken with the question of where now after “All The Wyers of Pern” and “The Skies of Pern.”

Ruth seemed a logical starting point. Ruth needed a mate. “She is a green dragon. I have already out flown her.” No contest, no interest.

I wanted to read another book about Ruth and Jaxom, so I started writing it. I am not a writer by trade. I am an editor. I am currently editing a book for a friend on Vietnam.

Hi Doug,

I’m sorry but I’m not interested in taking someone else’s story. Even if I were interested, the legal ramifications are just too horrendous to contemplate. Beyond this, Mum has said repeatedly that Ruth is a sport — he has no interest in sex and can’t mate (he’s sterile).

If you want to write, write in your own universe. You’ll find it much more rewarding.

As for any follow-on stories from “All the Weyrs of Pern” or “The Skies of Pern”, I think that’s the perogative of my mother. If you’ve read my website carefully, you’ll note a couple of instances where I mentioned how Mum tends to be very possessive of her characters — and rightly so, I think, as she’s got the best sense of them.

Also, it is incredibly rude to force a story on someone without even first asking their permission. I have had to delete your whole message from my mailbox and have only reproduced a portion of your original message here. You may also have noticed if you read through my website, that I’ve told people that I cannot read their stories — I don’t have time and I really can’t get involved in the potential legal hassle.

You are protected by wp-dephorm: