Friday, September 24, 2010

Fencon 2010

(Photos, clockwise from top: My Art Show display at FenCon; Vincent Villafranca's work-in-progress THE DOGS OF WAR; Rie Sheridan Rose in full Victorian regalia) Took me a few days to post this, but before this week disappears, I wanted to say a few words about this year’s Fencon in Dallas, TX (Addison, TX, to be specific). In short -- take a bow, Fencon. You came, you saw and you rocked this past weekend. I had a blast from start to finish. Plenty of highlights, including:

Rhonda Eudaly – First-class. She conducted guest relations as well as any con can, anywhere. She made every guest feel like family. She stopped at nothing to ensure every guest received A-list treatment. How can anyone not be happy when their complimentary goodie bag contains beer and rock-em, sock-em robot rings?

Jimmy Simpson – Rock-solid. This man knows his art and knows how to run a quality art show. When you’re an artist deciding whether or not to invest time and labor in an art show, the show director is often the difference-maker. Jimmy’s one of the best in the business, and I already look forward to when I can again participate in a Jimmy Simpson show.

Andy Trembley & Kevin Roche – Fan GoHs, and extremely cool guys. These guys know costuming like nobody’s business, and they know their premium alcohols. Had a terrific time with them and look forward to any con where they’re around.

Opening Ceremonies – Spider Robinson GoHed via Skype. He didn’t physically attend the con as Author GoH, but was very much a virtual presence throughout.

Vincent Villafranca – As always, more phenomenal work from one of the best sculptors in the field. He unveiled a work-in-progress called 'The Dogs of War' that blew me away.

Jessica Wade -- Ace/Roc editor extraordinaire. How cool is she? She's so cool that a mere autographed headshot of her brought money in an auction. She's so cool that she can make the phrase "for reals" ring in my head for days and I'm amused. For reals. :)

The Lansdales -- Joe, Kasey, and Karen. Always a pleasure with them. Saturday night, we dined at the Clay Pit along with Jessica and my pal Sanford Allen. It was one of my favorite meals in a while. Best company, conversations, and great Indian food all in one. On Sunday, Kasey belted out a one-hour singing performance at FenCon and if I didn't have a simultaneous panel commitment, I would've seen more. Fortunately, I was able to catch a few minutes at the end and she was awesome.

(Photos clockwise from top: (l to r): Sanford Allen, Andy Trembley (back), Kevin Roche, Stina Leicht; Guest of Honor goodie bag contents (note the Rock-em, Sock-em Robot Rings); Andy Trembley with smooth rocket fuel)

Enjoyed seeing the great Robert J. Sawyer, P.N. Elrod, Chris Merle, Mel Tatum, Caroline Spector, Cat Conrad, Rachel Caine, Shanna Swendson, Karen Meschke, Brad Foster, David Lee Anderson, Rocky Kelley, Stina Leicht, Jeff & Maya Bohnhoff, John Randall, and many, many more whom I wish I could remember in my current deadline-frenzied state.

Special shoutout to Jay – he’s been an Elric fan for over 30 years and gave one of the best compliments ever. Said he walked in the Art Show, saw my 5-foot tall vinyl print of ELRIC: THE STEALER OF SOULS and felt that the image embodied the Elric he’d always seen in his head but never seen until then. Really made me feel good to hear that.

If you're a pro or fan and you've never experienced FenCon, these folks know what they’re doing and their attendees know how to have a great time. It's a very fun show and this won't be my last. I was honored to be there. Huge thanks to the whole con staff including the aforementioned Rhonda and Jimmy, Tim Miller, Tim Morgan, Julie Barrett, Bobb Waller, Ed Dravecky, Becky Demonja and everyone who made the show great.

Friday, September 10, 2010


Here's one of my interior illustrations from Michael Moorcock's ELRIC: SWORDS AND ROSES, forthcoming in December from Del Rey. This original is pencil on illustration board, with a bit of white acrylic for good measure. It debuted at Dragon*Con this past weekend and will be on display at Fencon in Dallas next week, along with several other Elric originals. The cover art for ELRIC: SWORDS AND ROSES has received so much enthusiastic reaction, and I'm grateful and pleased to hear that. Many Dragon*Con attendees told me how much they're looking forward to the book because of the art, and that's terrific. Michael Moorcock is The Man.

This will be the sixth book in Del Rey's Elric omnibus series. I did the cover and interiors for the first volume, ELRIC: THE STEALER OF SOULS, and it's been an honor to be associated with the art for this series along with Michael Kaluta and Justin Sweet. I look forward to seeing the finished book when it debuts in December!

Thursday, September 09, 2010


Here's my cover illustration for Sheri S. Tepper's THE WATERS RISING, which recently released in hardcover from HarperCollins/Eos. This cover art has surprised me with the amount of enthusiasm expressed for it by readers and booksellers. Thanks to all for saying so before I even had a chance to post. Much appreciated. :)

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Dragon*Con 2010

Dragon*Con 2010 is a wrap. What a show. I'm still assessing it. This show's definitely on my radar from here on. This was my first Dragon*Con as an exhibitor and guest artist, and I was massively impressed. Huge turnouts at panels, a thriving art show, great energy, great people, terrific marketing, superior guest services from the D*C staff -- they've really got their act together. The audience is here, no question about it.

Best of times with Lou Anders, Irene Gallo, Vincent & Michelle Villafranca, Donato Giancola, Todd Lockwood, Marc Scheff, Jim Minz, Jennifer Heddle, Deanna Hoak, Mary Robinette Kowal, Cherie Priest, Farah Mendlesohn, Kate Baker, Stu & Stephen Segal, Mike Resnick, David Alastair Hayden, great artists, authors (shoutout to all of the Pyr authors), fans, and friends new and old -- too many for my bleary memory to remember on the fly here.

Really enjoyed meeting the mighty Sidebar Nation crew for the first time. Terrific cats. Love listening to their podcasts. They're the real deal and know their stuff. Did a short fun interview with them. Hopefully down the road, we'll chat again at greater length.

I exhibited in the D*C Art Show and of all of my pieces for sale, only one will be coming home. Everything else on the walls sold out. Plenty of small prints sold and I sold out of all of my art books before the last day even began.

Shoutout to Stu Segal for coordinating the Hugo Awards Breakfast and Stroll with the Stars. The man is tireless. Special thanks to all who make Dragon*Con run so smoothly, including John and Anne Parise who ran the Art Show. Congrats on a huge success and an amazing weekend.

Here's a link to a Flickr set of photos from this year's D*C.