Monday, December 31, 2007

Goodbye, 2007

Hey, '07 -- you were a heckuva year. Before you head out forever, a tip of the hat to all my pals and associates who shared the last twelve months with me. Time to wipe the slate clean and start fresh. One final look at a few '07 highlights from this corner of the universe:

January -- COVER STORY: THE ART OF JOHN PICACIO (MonkeyBrain) finishes on several "Best of 2006" lists, including SFSignal and RevSF.

February -- My covers for Rebecca Ore's TIME'S CHILD (Eos) and Lou Anders' FAST FORWARD 1 (Pyr) hit the streets. The STAR TREK/CRUCIBLE trilogy completes with the release of CRUCIBLE: KIRK -- THE STAR TO EVERY WANDERING by David R. George III. COVER STORY: THE ART OF JOHN PICACIO is one of the best art books of 2006, according to Locus Magazine's Recommended Reading List.

March -- Traci and I married on March 17th. Hands-down, one of my favorite days ever. On a sidenote, I'm notified that same day that I'm a finalist for not one, but two Hugo Awards -- Best Professional Artist and Best Related Book. Hard to beat March 17, 2007 as the best day of my entire year. Traci and I begin our double honeymoon in Toronto and following that, I'm the Artist Guest of Honor at the World Horror Convention.

April -- Traci and I finish our honeymoon in Europe. We first travelled to the Netherlands where I was one of the special guests at Elf Fantasy Fair in Utrecht, along with Brian Froud, David Anthony Durham, Chris Geere, Lou Ferrigno, and Prof. Roland Rotherham. Following that episode of the Surreal Life, Traci and I moved on to London where we have a glorious time, despite how badly the American dollar sucked.

May -- Chris Roberson's X-MEN: THE RETURN is in stores everywhere. I grew up on X-MEN comics, so illustrating this cover was a dream come true.

June -- George Alec Effinger's A THOUSAND DEATHS debuts with my wraparound cover illustration. I'm invited to the Seattle to have the great honor of inducting Ed Emshwiller into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame. As if that weren't enough, COVER STORY is a finalist for the Locus Award for Best Artbook, and I win the Locus Award for Artist -- something I never dreamed would happen. Wow, wow, wow. (And my San Antonio Spurs win their fourth NBA Championship(!), with mass insanity and partying in the downtown streets, not far from our home....:))

July -- Paul Cornell's BRITISH SUMMERTIME releases from MonkeyBrain. Traci and I travel to Tulsa, Oklahoma where I'm the Artist Guest of Honor at Conestoga 11. Soon after, I discover I'm a finalist for two Chesley Awards -- Best Paperback Cover (A CANTICLE FOR LEIBOWITZ) and Best Magazine Cover Illustration (INTERZONE #204).

August -- I attend the always-terrific Armadillocon in Austin, TX, which is close to home here in San Antonio, and then travel the furthest distance of my life two weeks later, when my buddy Lou Anders and I head to Japan for the World Science Fiction Convention. I'm not sure if we were prouder that we were both 2007 Hugo Finalists, or that we both survived the 72-hour blitz through Yokohama. Awesome, unforgettable, and we now have cherished friends in Nippon.



September -- I'm a first-time finalist for the British Fantasy Award for Best Artist, along with Vincent Chong, Les Edwards, Dean Harkness, and Edward Miller. Vinny claims the prize -- congrats, Vin! Sometime during this period, I complete the last of the interior illustrations for the forthcoming (Feb. 2008) release of Michael Moorcock's ELRIC: THE STEALER OF SOULS (Ballantine/Del Rey), a huge ongoing effort which I was working on throughout the twelve prior months, along with my other cover work. More news on this after the New Year....

October -- Michael Moorcock's THE METATEMPORAL DETECTIVE (Pyr) debuts. So does 2007 Hugo nominee Bruce McAllister's collection THE GIRL WHO LOVED ANIMALS AND OTHER STORIES (Golden Gryphon). Traci and I attend my 20-Year high school reunion (Holmes High School, San Antonio, '87), and the utterly surreal occurs when the geeky kid who couldn't get a date (me) is voted "Most Successful." A strange life, no?

November -- World Fantasy Con, Saratoga Springs, NY....I'm a finalist for the World Fantasy Award in the Artist category, along with Shaun Tan (congrats!), Jill Thompson, Jon Foster, and Edward Miller. That same weekend, I win the International Horror Guild Award in the Artist category, becoming the first artist to win the IHG twice.

December -- Traci and I celebrate Michael Moorcock's birthday at his release party/booksigning for THE METATEMPORAL DETECTIVE. Mike Resnick's STARSHIP: MERCENARY debuts. My last finished cover work of the year is one of my most ambitious -- the triptych for Jeffrey Ford's WELL-BUILT CITY trilogy which will release next fall in trade paperback from Golden Gryphon.

Whew -- (deep exhale) yeah, 2007, you were unforgettable. Bring on '08. To everyone out there -- thanks very much and best wishes to you on the other side of the New Year!

11 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, John,

How could you forget the wraparound cover art for Bruce McAllister's collection, The Girl Who Loved Animals and Other Stories, which was published by Golden Gryphon Press in October!
Sheesh . . . What's a mother to do!

All best to you and Traci for the New Year!
Cheers,
Marty Halpern

2:56 PM  
Blogger John Picacio said...

Hey, Marty --

I don't know how that one slipped by me. I went back and included the book in my little timeline, and also included a shot of the cover. Thanks, man! Happy New Year to you and Diane.

3:26 PM  
Blogger John D. said...

Another great year!

7:23 PM  
Blogger John Picacio said...

Thanks, John. Happy New Year to you and everyone over at the Signal!

9:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

All the best to you and Traci in 08, John. And thanks again for the Well-Built City covers.

jeff ford

10:10 AM  
Anonymous Christopher said...

I hope 2008 is an even better year for you, John! 2007 was really amazing; you're an amazing artist and I can't see how 2008 won't be even better.

Christopher

12:18 PM  
Blogger John Picacio said...

Hey, Jeff -- Same to you folks over there. Yeah, I'm real curious to see how the final WELL-BUILT CITY covers turn out....fingers crossed....

Christopher! Happy New Year to you too....best to you and your novel in these coming months. :)

12:29 PM  
Blogger marco said...

A wonderful 2007, for sure, and many more highlights to come in 2008! - Marco @ Solaris

2:33 AM  
Blogger John Picacio said...

Thanks, Marco. Great to finally meet you this year! All the best to the Solaris team....you guys had a pretty amazing year yourselves....back to the grindstone for all of us, right? :)

12:48 PM  
Blogger Lou Anders said...

Man, honored to have been such a part of that roundup!

4:34 PM  
Blogger John Picacio said...

We did alright, didn't we? I've got my wind back now, and I'm ready to grind again for '08. More on SON OF MAN, STARSHIP: REBEL and FAST FORWARD 2 real soon! :)

12:25 AM  

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