Month: August 2009

Question from Bert

Question from Bert

Please do not confuse this with a story idea, it is just a general question, understandably which you may not be able to answer. Do you know if there will be a follow-on story to “Skies of Pern” that will extend that storyline? Thank you.

Hi Bert,

No, that’s not a story idea. Mum’s been working on and off on a follow-up to “Skies of Pern” for a while. Somedays it seems to go great, others days not to great.




Dragonheart will be out in paperback from Del Rey on October 27th, 2009.

If you’d like to read an excerpt, the nice folks at Del Rey have the first chapter on-line.

The current version, sadly, has some typos (probably due to translation from their typesetter format to HTML). In particular at least all ‘fi’ and ‘fl’ combinations have been changed to ‘?’ which makes things a bit challenging!

So, if you haven’t read Dragonheart because you were waiting for the paperback and you’re interested in challenges, follow this link!

You could impress (sorry, pun not intended!) your friends by reading the excerpt without stumbling over the typos!

Computer went: “Crash!”

Computer went: “Crash!”

It’s always something. My marvelous home-built computer was wobbling last week and, finally, fatally crashed (sigh).

Fortunately yours truly had matters (mostly) in hand. I had not just backups but a backup computer. In fact, I had a home-built machine purpose-built to run 64-bit Windows Vista already built, installed, and just waiting for some good time to put it into service.

And, on top of it, I followed the advice/marketing of the guys over at Luxology and bought a Drobo storage system to which I had just recently backed up my entire work directory (which includes all my novels, stories, screenplays, Business stuff, et cetera).

As my pretty machine had given me some intimation of problems earlier, I also went out and found good backup software for my e-mail and Firefox bookmarks (I can’t recommend MozBackup too much!)

The bad news was that the new computer, having sat for several months, decided to get snarky and wouldn’t boot, had to be re-installed and was generally determined to let me know how much it did not appreciate playing second fiddle to a lesser (but quieter) machine.

The machine in question and I spent many, many hours undergoing therapy (none involving hammers or other acts of man-machine violence, thankfully) until we finally came to a suitable arrangement. That is, it worked and I was happy.

Now I’d built this newer machine partly because I was expecting to do a lot more graphics work and needed more horsepower (faster CPU, more RAM, faster and bigger hard drives) and I knew that for some of the things I wanted to do, I’d need to bite the bullet and move up to 64-bit Windows.

But… By golly does it fly! This computer is way noticeably faster than my old (and still respected) computer.

Now, of course, my laptop has started acting up. I am, at this time, just giving it lots of TLC and reminding it that there is a recession, that it’s really not that old and that I was never really expecting it to run cutting-edge graphics packages and that I’ve only been looking at other laptops for fun. (Fingers crossed.)

Hi Todd,

I’ve really enjoyed your books, most especially Dragonheart. I have a few questions if that’s okay?

Firstly, do you have any idea how long it is likely to be until Dragongirl is in the shops? I’m really eager to find out what happens next after Dragonheart.

Secondly, do you happen to know if any of your family are currently writing or planning to write a Pern novel, perhaps even your mother?

And thirdly – maybe this is a question best put to your mother, but I’m a little confused. I’ve been rereading the All the Weyrs and The Skies of Pern, and there’s repeated mention of keeping secret the dragon’s ability to travel through time – and yet the entire of Pern knows about the “Oldtimers”, and I seem to recall in one book (perhaps Dragondrums) the Harper Hall doing a ballad based on Lessa’s trip to the past. Can you explain this discrepancy at all, please?

Thank you, and I’m already looking forward to reading your next novel,



Hi Emma,

You can always ask questions! (I reserve the right to avoid answering them.)

These questions are easy:

Dragongirl will be published in hardcover in the US, UK, and elsewhere April 27th, 2010.

That’s the bad news. The good news is that the sequel is going great guns and (knock on your favorite good luck charm) we’re hoping it’ll be done and turned in to the editors well before Dragongirl is on the shelves.

As for your third question… well, that really is a question for Mum but I will say this much: by the end of the next several books in the Third Pass, you’ll have a very good idea why dragonriders aren’t encouraged to time it.


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