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a familiar problem

Feb. 11th, 2014 | 01:49 pm

My Dad sent copies of my Garden at the Roof of the world to his relatives for last Christmas. None of them read the genre. They've been telling him that this is the strangest book they've ever read, but couldn't put it down. They wanted to know what happened next.

I'm charmed, both by my father's generosity and by my relatives comments.

I can only hope that when Hacker gets published he doesn't sent that book to them. I doubt much they will still be speaking to me after reading that one.

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Arisia: Con Report

Jan. 21st, 2014 | 10:36 pm

I left Arisia tired by filled with stories I long to have time to write. My favorite is that of an alien species that communicates entirely by pheromones.

I got to meet some great people. Probably the coolest I met were Daniel José Older, Mikki Kendall, Tempest & Nisi Shawl. I was honored to sit on the same panels as Nisi, Mikki and Daniel.

This was my first time at Arisia. It was filled with imaginative and good natured people, but it is very much a monoculture. While the theme was Cross Culturalism, the sessions I sat in on and attended were almost all about racism and diversity. In an age when people of color can't let their kids run like the white folks do because they might get arrested as suspected thieves, this is an important conversation to have.

I'll start writing those stories after I'm done with the re-write of "hacker" and Absinthe. Both stories, however, will benefit from what I learned at Arisia.

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Arisia

Jan. 10th, 2014 | 09:54 pm

Some how I'd forgotten to post here that I'll be presenting and reading at this year's Arisia. My schedule:

613 Narratives and Counternarratives Bullfinch Writing Sat 7:00 PM

As writers, how do we walk the tricky line between paying homage to and critiquing/subverting the racist and sexist baggage of the past?

703 Reading: Freedman, Hoffman, Kahn, and Williams Executive Board Room Writing Sun 7:00 PM

559 Creating Cultures Faneuil Writing Mon 11:30 AM

Religion, language, politics, gender roles, and treatment of the young and elderly are just a few elements to consider in making a culture seem real. How does one create a fictional culture without over-simplifying? How does one draw from culture and myth in the real world, without perpetuating racial, ethnic or religious stereotypes? What is cultural appropriation, and how we create fictional worlds while remaining mindful of inequalities in this one?

Hope to see you there!

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Remember me?

Jan. 10th, 2014 | 09:49 pm

I just finished the modifications to the proofs for Security and Service Oriented Architecture, two days before deadline. Who ever said that you can't be a novelist, a poet, a husband, a father, maintain a job as an information security executive, and write a text book on architecture (Security architecture & and application architecture) was wrong.

However, I should have listened to them. I sort of dropped off the face of the earth.

The good news?

Now I can start writing fiction again!

I can also start blogging again.

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Sold out?!

Sep. 2nd, 2013 | 01:05 pm

Both Amazon.com as well as Barnes and Noble sold out their physical copies on the first day!

Now, I've no idea how many copies that was, but briefly my Amazon.com sales rank rose from 350,000 or so to 150,000 or so, before falling again.

Kindle sales rank rose to 40,000 or so before falling.

Not bad for a no name first time author.

My readers rock!

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Tomorrow my world changes

Aug. 29th, 2013 | 09:31 am

I started writing The Garden at the Roof of the world about 10 years ago. Tomorrow it will be available for purchase. During those ten years, I had a nervous breakdown, thought I was mentally ill because of it, lost three jobs, nearly went bankrupt and through out all of this my darling wife, Margo, stood by me and never lost faith in me.

There was one dark day when I decided to kill myself, and it was Margo that pulled me back from that brink. I can never repay her for her faith in me except to have that faith in her. Tomorrow happens because of her.

My kids continued to love me and give me needed hugs and encouragement and hope as my life crashed and burned. That my failures hurt them was the worst hurt I've ever felt and their continued love and forgiveness helped me/helps me. I can never repay them except to continually never give up. Tomorrow happens because of them.

Some of these things I wrote about here, or in my other live journal. When I posted here, you were always there supporting me, my writing, my goals, my hopes. Thank you all. Tomorrow happens because of you.

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Introducing Gwenaella from the Garden at the Roof of the World

Aug. 6th, 2013 | 06:36 am

We’ve all been there, making promises to God, if only my beloved gets well, I’ll do anything! The Garden at the Roof of the World is about a young woman, Gwenaella, a convent student in the mid 13th century, who learns that her brother is dying. Fearing the worst, she starts to rush home, pausing only to help an old woman who is hurt by a stone kicked up by a galloping horse. This old woman tells her if she seeks a unicorn in the dangerous and mysterious Brocéliande forest, she will find the help she seeks for her brother.

To desperate Gwenaella, this promise seems the answer to her prayer, especially when it is followed by a dream that magically comes to her with the same promise.

Seeking that unicorn puts Gwenaella onto a dangerous quest that will have her travel half way across the known world, forcing her to confront her inner demons, over come the loss of her betrothed, test the bounds of friendship and discover the true meaning of love and of sacrifice.

The novel started as a bedtime story for my eldest daughter, of a young woman trying to help the unicorns in their need. As I told her of Gwenaella’s adventures, I realized that unlike other bedtime stories I created, this was a story worth sharing, but it was not to be a children’s story. Anyone traveling with a unicorn would be challenged to remain pure. At best, it would be a journey only a saint could make, and I would be sending perfectly ordinary people to try to return to paradise to save the life of something innocent. Gwenaella, like most of us is a good person, but she is no saint. Gwenaella’s journey is a spiritual journey as well as a physical journey, as she seeks to return to paradise to save something innocent in repayment for her brother’s life.

I am thrilled to be able to share Gwenaella’s story with you.

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New review of the Garden at the Roof of the World from Publisher's Weekly's Booklife

Jul. 26th, 2013 | 11:39 pm

The good folks at Publisher's Weekly take a fresh look at the manuscript. They obviously like what I tried to accomplish though they think that accurately portraying medieval attitudes and ideas may be hard for a modern reader to stomach. They were hard to write as they are far from how I view the world.

However, I think modern readers are ready for stories that are respectful of the era they write about. Too often I've read criticisms about placing modern attitudes in stories about the past.

I decided to not give my characters modern attitudes and I'm thrilled that Publisher's Weekly thinks "Williams’s debut, a finalist for the 2009 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award, shows his willingness to take on difficult topics of faith, culture clashes, and gender issues; the effort is admirable"

http://www.booklife.com/978-1-940076-00-3

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Book Signing: Saturday August 17th 1 PM

Jul. 26th, 2013 | 05:00 pm

Annie's Book Stop
362 South Main St.
Sharon, MA 02067
781-784-4306

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Annie's Book Stop in Sharon hosting a pre-release book signing

Jul. 26th, 2013 | 03:49 pm

Details forthcoming, but we're looking at Saturday, August 17th!

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