Tag Archives: book

Salvage Comic – sketching

I’m sketching some of the intro pages to the comic edition of Salvage, and here’s one page from the opening scene.  For links and more info about Salvage, which will be out in August from Masque Books: http://www.SaltwaterWitch.com

SalvageComic-ShipIntro-ChrisHoward

Plotting out the sequel to Salvage

Over lunch I worked on the plot for Salvage’s sequel, which I’m calling Wreckage for now.  Salvage will be out next month from Masque–more links and pics and more info when I have them.  Here are a couple pages from my notebook with my (fuzzy) notes and doodles about Wreckage.

WreckagePlotting-Notes-ChrisHoward

 

Mermaid

Early look at the cover and title for Mermaid.

mermaid_disp

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SALVAGE is done!

The end! Finished another book, fifty-two chapters, a little under a hundred thousand words, working title is SalvageThis is another Seaborn book–the first in a new series, sort of a tech-thriller/fantasy cross-over, if you can imagine that. The plan is to let it sit, steep like bad tea for a month, do one more edit pass, and get the manuscript to my agent mid-January.  We'll see where it goes from there.

In the meantime–although I'm tired, I am clearly not too tired to cook up some fun cover art for this one.  Hope you like!

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Saltwater Witch Giveaway at GoodReads!

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Saltwater Witch by Chris Howard

Saltwater Witch

by Chris Howard

Giveaway ends December 08, 2012.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

Writer Tools


WritingIf you’re writing short stories or books—and let’s face it,
who’s not?—I have a few tools for you, character name generators (contemporary
and Seaborn names) and a word pair list generator, all of which I use for my
own work.   One of the greatest things
about fantasy and science fiction as a genre is that so many F&SF readers
are also writers.  I don't think you'll find that in
thrillers, murder mysteries, romance, or anywhere else.

The contemporary name generator lets you create a list of male or
female names.  Same goes for the Seaborn Name generators, except that they're all ancient Greek names, male and female.

The word pair list is a way to spark ideas. Sometimes when
I'm stuck in a plot I will pull random words out of the dictionary–usually
nouns–and play with the ideas, see how the story would change if I introduced
poison, or make one of the characters a really good cook, or take a word like
"chronograph" and it makes me wonder what would happen to the plot if
there was a "ticking clock"–a count-down timer on a bomb, or the bad
guys are going to kill someone at a particular time and the protagonist has to
do something extraordinary in order to prevent it. The words are there to feed
the story with new and unexpected ideas. 
It's not quite the same, but think of it as something like Brian Eno's
Oblique Strategies, except for writing instead of music. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oblique_Strategies.
There was a cool "Oblique Strategies for Authors" panel at the last Readercon
led by Glenn Grant with panelists Gavin Grant, Eric Van, Jo Walton, and others).

 

Check it all out here:

Writer Tools

 

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Fourteen foot tall book covers…

I have been painting like a demon the past few days and although I’m still doing some detail work, I think it’s ready to be posted. First off, the format is a bit ridiculous…or maybe it’s ridiculously cool.  It’s certainly been a fun one to paint.  The actual size in pixels is about 2200 wide by well over 51,000 long.  (That works out to about 7.5 inches wide by over 170 inches tall)

I’m going to leave the purpose for doing this weird-sized illustration unclear, but if you want to you can think of it as a book cover that’s 9 inches wide and fourteen feet tall.  Or maybe it’s a scroll.  Or a fan-fold insert for a book…  How’s that?  Okay, I will fill things in a little more: I’m working on a publishing project that will go live this summer and involves kickstarter.com and possibly some partners.  I’ll leave it at that for now because there is still a lot of planning to do.

The concept is one continuous illustration going from seagulls skimming the surface of a stormy sea to (~51,000 pixels later) the floor of a fairly deep and dark part of the ocean.  In terms of ocean depth it’s about 6000 meters from surface to floor with some of the cool things you’ll find along the way.

Here are a few highlights (below), but it’s a big damn illo and you really should scroll through the whole thing:  http://www.SaltwaterWitch.com/switch/SeabornScroll

Finally, I want to call attention to the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute (www.whoi.edu) which operates the DSV Alvin, and my favorite aquarium on the planet, Monterey Bay Aquarium (www.montereybayaquarium.org) which has captivated and inspired me for decades.

I also posted this for IllustrationFriday: Heights.

Let me know what you think!

SeabornScroll_example1

SeabornScroll_example2

SeabornScroll_example3

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Drawing…

I'm planning to wrap up things tomorrow for the Boskone Art Show next weekend (Boskone 49, February 17-19, 2012, Boston Westin Waterfront), and when I do I will post my layout with the pieces that will be on the wall.  My theme this year is smaller works–so this one won't be in the show, but I had prints made of a couple cropped sections of "Seaborn Battle" and those will be in the show.

 

Art-DISP

SeabornBattle25-540w

SeabornBattleCrop1

 

Nanowhere is back!

The second edition of my tech thriller Nanowhere is out, although the official release–in print–won't be until next month or early 2012.  The ebook's available right now at Amazon and B&N on the Kindle, Fire, Nook, and any device with the Kindle or nook apps.  (More eBook formats and channels to follow).

This edition has a bunch of edits over the original version, which came out in 2005, and includes two of the research reports by the character John Andreden at the back of the book.

The eBook cover is on the left and the print book is below.

Here's some of the back cover copy:

Nanowhere… it's a love story with all the usual elements: rogue soldiers, computer hacking, tyranny, cryptography, hit-men with an affinity for rolled adhesives, rebellious skateboarders, and sentient billion-node self-organizing nanotech ghosts.

Here's a clip of Cory Doctorow's kind words on Boing Boing:

Chris Howard has released an…interesting and well-written…sf thriller called Nanowhere along with a bunch of supplementary materials that purports to be the lab notes and publications of one of the book's characters …

 

Amazon.com | Amazon.uk | Amazon.de | Amazon.fr
Barnes & Noble


Nanowhere book cover art

I just found this link on Guy Kawasaki's G+ stream.  Everything you need to know about starting and operating a street food business in NYC, and I was thinking there's no end to the stories that can come out of being a street vendor in the City. Meeting hundreds of people every day, some of them regulars. The protag—the owner of the food truck or pushcart–can be a retired private investigator, an alien, a vampire, an impatient classically trained chef with a love for yakitori. Think what you can do with humor, information gathering, a front for crime or the CIA, horror–a street food vendor on Sept. 11.  What if we turn this vampire/undead thing on its head and suddenly every book and magazine publisher is getting dozens of stories centered on the street food business in NYC?  That would be worth writing and submitting a couple stories itself.

Who's with me?

Start here:
http://newyorkstreetfood.com/10085/the-basics-of-starting-a-street-food-business/

Go write something!