Saturday, August 19, 2006

Well, it's not quite officially ended...

Anibal was off the Chilean bestseller chart last week, but it climbed back on this week. Hanging on in the #8 spot!

Los 10 libros mas vendidos en las Americas - 18 Aug

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Sunday, August 13, 2006

In Praise of George R. R. Martin

I've become a fan of George R. R. Martin. Strangely, I hadn't read him before completing Acacia: The War with the Mein. Actually, it had been a while since I'd read any fantasy, and most of the titles that inspired me were the classics of the genre: works by Tolkein, Ursula LeGuin, Marion Zimmer Bradley, and some sci-fi like Frank Herbert's Dune. Author's like these had a lot to do with why I came to write a fantasy. Thing is, having finished my book, I started thinking I'd better catch up on what had been done in fantasy the last twenty years or so. For all I knew I'd rehashed themes that other writers had been working on since I was a teenager. I began sampling some of the better known authors in the genre.

Fortunately, I didn't find many other writers who approached their alternative world as I did. Quite a bit of what I read was disappointing, really, but from the first pages of A Game of Thrones. I knew I'd found something inspired. I ended up loving the book, and I look forward to carrying on with the series. I loved it that Martin wrote complex, conflicted, duplicitous characters living out their lives in a grand, expansive world. I loved it that unexpected tragedy could befall even the main characters. I loved it that sentence for sentence he's a solid, mature writer in control of craft, plot, dialogue. And I loved it that good and evil aren't delineated in black and white. This last point was particularly important to me. So it was reassuring to see that another writer had chosen to break out of the mold of so much fantasy - and that he'd managed to win a loyal (and massive) base of fans.

I noticed this quote on the subject in an interview George R. R. Martin gave to Publishers Weekly. He said...

"I wanted - in writing this series - to get away from the traditional good guys and bad guys cliches of so much of contemporary fantasy. I'm a huge fan of Tolkien, but some of the things he did very well, in lesser hands, the hands of his imitators, have become terrible weights on the field of fantasy. One of them is the notion of absolute good versus absolute evil, of a dark lord who's responsible for everything and is brooding there and sending forth his evil minions in order to plunge the entire world into darkness. The struggle between good and evil is certainly a legitimate topic; but that struggle is not waged against dark lords with evil minions. It's waged within the individual human heart. All of us have good and evil in us; the question is, what choices will we make when we're confronted with difficult and dangerous situations? That's the approach [to fantasy] that I wanted to take."

I'd say he succeeded at it brilliantly.

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Saturday, August 12, 2006

My run in Chile has officially ended

I was bumped off the bestseller list. I don't know how much sales have actually changed, but Isabel Allende swooped in to land the number one spot. Perhaps she bumped me into the obscurity of #11. Who knows? I'm delighted it ever happened, though. That's what I'm left with.

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Friday, August 04, 2006

I need to go to Chile

Chile, Chile, Chile... A grand country. I was ready to fade, but they were kind to me yet again. Number 7 last week, between Amy Tan and Dan Brown. How very weird. Sort of mixed company, but I'll be polite and grateful. And then I'm number 7 again this week. This time I'm between Laura Esquivel and Carlos Ruiz Zafon. Interesting.

Los 10 libros mas vendidos en las Americas - 28 July

Los 10 libros mas vendidos en las Americas - 4 August

By the way, I have been doing things other than following the Chilean bestseller lists. I've finished the revisions to Acacia, and sent them to my editor a few days ago. He should like it, I think. I deferred to his wisdom on 99% of things.

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