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Choice of the Deathless—out TODAY!

Do you want to be a skeletal law wizard?  Of course you do.  Who doesn’t?  Well, today your wish comes true.


I’ve written a choose-your-own-path type game set in the world of the Craft Sequence.  As a junior associate in the international necromantic firm of Varkath Nebuchadnezzar Stone, you may:

  • Explore a fantasy realm with a rich and evolving backstory, based my novels Three Parts Dead and Two Serpents Rise.
  • Play as male or female, gay or straight, dead or alive (or both).
  • Build your career on carefully reasoned contracts, or party all night with the skeletal partners at your firm.
  • Navigate intrigue and mystery in a world of scheming magicians and devious monsters.
  • Depose gods!  Battle demons!  Raise the dead!  Catch falling stars!  Get with child a mandrake root!
  • Okay, no actual mandrake roots in the game.  Sorry, Donne / DWJ fans.  But still!
  • Look for love in at least some of the right places.
  • Balance student loans, sleep, daily commute, rent payments, and demonic litigation—hey, nobody said being a wizard was always fun.

The game is out TODAY for iOS and Android, as well as in-browser.  It’s $2.99 for the full game; on Android or in-Browser you get to try the first bit of the game for free!  I had a lot of fun making Choice of the Deathless.  It shows a ton of new facets of the Craft Sequence world, including the actual inner workings of necromantic firms, what’s the deal with demons, and the disturbing luxury of travel-by-dragon.

What are you waiting for?  Check it out!

TWO SERPENTS RISE – Out Tomorrow – Trailer Today!

TWO SERPENTS RISE comes out tomorrow, everybody.

This is awesome.

I’ve always loved trailers, and I wanted to put one together for this book.  While I don’t have access to the hardware and expertise required to actually shoot a trailer for something like Two Serpents Rise, I do have a copy of FinalDraft, a PDF exporter, and a sense of humor.  So I present to you:


Warning: this trailer obviously features scenes from the book.  It’s light on plot, high on spectacle—think atmospheric teaser rather than ENORMOUS PLOT REVEAL INSANITY.  But if you’re very spoiler conscious, maybe stay clear?  Or don’t.  As you wish.


Greetings human beings from Planet Getting Ready For Book Launch, where we spend our days listening to Vienna Teng and Cake as we prepare for our book to come out NEXT TUESDAY AAAAH.

I am compiling schemes with regard to the plans I mentioned yesterday for Two Serpents Rise giveaways—expect more on that when I’ve assembled a sufficient lead time on my various guestblog posts and interviews.  In the meantime, I thought I’d fill y’all in on signing plans for TWO SERPENTS RISE, and announce an awesome sale Tor’s running for the rest of the month.


  • Tuesday, October 29: LAUNCH PARTY at Pandemonium Books and Games, 4 Pleasant Street, Cambridge MA, 7:00 PM!  Come say hello, have a pastry, hear me read, recommend me books, grill me about magic systems, discuss your favorite Star Wars theories, communicate with me in Hawkguy-creepy-Russian-speak (basically you just say bro a lot), have a great time!
  • Tuesday, November 5: Reddit AMA at r/fantasy!  I did one of these super question-and-answer sessions last year, and it was a blast.  I look forward to even more blasting.
  • Saturday, November 9: New York City Signing at Enigma Bookstore, 33-17 Crescent Street, Astoria, New York, 7:00 PM!  I am informed that Astoria is actually within New York City, even though it’s not within New York County, which—awesome!  I’ll be signing with some other folks here—Laura Ann Gilman and Hal Johnson—and we should have an excellent time.
  • Tuesday, November 19: Signing at Porter Square Books, 25 White Street, Cambridge, MA, 7:00 PM! Back in the habit, just like Sister Act 2.  Readings.  Signings.  Possible performance art!  Probably no performance art.  But still, not an event to miss.
  • December 6-8: Anonycon in Stamford, CT.  Last year we ran a game based in the Craft Sequence world.  This year, possibly more games?  Also I’ll be there writing and hanging out and signing books, so come and say hi!

More madness will transpire throughout the next several weeks, but those are the in-person and / or live highlights.  However!  You may be interested to know, in case you didn’t already, that in preparation for the TWO SERPENTS RISE launch, Tor Books has cut prices on THREE PARTS DEAD ebooks down to $2.99 for the rest of the month of October.  Always wanted an electronic copy?  Get one now!  Available wherever fine ebooks are sold!  For example, available on Barnes and Noble! iBookstore! Those Guys Named After The River!  Other places too, I’m sure.

Time to run, but rock on folks!

First Carton of Two Serpents Rise Arrives!

A strange box showed up at my door yesterday.  I wonder what it might contain!

photo 1


Well, okay.  Fair enough.  The post title kind of gives it away, right?

photo 2


Look at them all—beautiful.  And I’d like to get them in the hands of people!  I have an idea, a scheme.  What if I were to give some of these books away under the condition that the giver then pass the book along, and the next reader pass it along in turn?  We could write a list in the front of the book of everyone who has read it so far.  Thoughts?

Cover Proofs for Two Serpents Rise Are In!

I just got the cover proofs of Two Serpents Rise, and check it out.

photo (14)

Here’s a detail of the cover, complete with quotes from Carrie Vaughn and All Things UF:

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And here’s the back cover, full of nice things people (including Elizabeth Bear, Tina Connolly, Publishers Weekly, LibraryJournal, Strange Horizons, and io9) are saying about this book and the last one:

photo (16)

Feeling pretty good over here.  Oh yeah.

New Short Story, Plus Library Journal Review, Plus 2SR News, Plus I’m Back!

I’m glad to see that you all have handled my radio silence with your usual aplomb.  I’ve spent the last week or so out of the country, in Ireland, on important Drinking Guinness and Listening to Music and Seeing Ancient Ruins business.  I spent time on a tiny island that could very easily have been the basis for an HP Lovecraft story, but rather than being creepy in any way it was really welcoming and beautiful and touching.  More on that later.  And also about Star Wars and bees.

I have to run off and buy supplies for dinner—Steph and I have, post-Ireland, sworn off alcohol and anything that vaguely resembles fish and chips for at least a few days—but I do have a few things to note!

First: I have a story, called Drona’s Death, in the anthology XO Orpheus, which comes out this month.  XO Orpheus is a collection of retellings of myths, and I contributed a piece adapting one of my favorite stories from the Mahabharata.  Check it out—you can read the full piece for free at tor.com:

The war rages on, and Drona is its heart.

I’m glad this piece is out there, (a) because it’s good and (b) because I don’t actually have a lot of current fiction available for free on the web.  The stuff I link at the right is good, but it’s also a few years old—I’m much better than that now, I think.

Also, Library Journal has nice things to say about Two Serpents Rise, adding to the general good vibes we’ve already received from PW and Locus:

Gladstone follows his acclaimed debut, THREE PARTS DEAD, with another fast-paced fantasy thriller set in the same world. This time, he focuses on the sprawling city of Dresediel Lex, rich in a history and culture reminiscent of the Aztecs, which serves as a dramatic backdrop for the novel’s action. This worthy sequel should receive attention from fans of China Miéville and Steven Erikson.

This book is netting me some seriously blushworthy comparisons.  I can’t bench nearly enough to be compared to China Mieville.

In other 2SR-related news, I’m chatting with the narrator for my audiobook tonight about pronunciations, tone, and the like.  The narrator is Chris Ciulla, and he seems like a pretty awesome reader.  Claudia Alick did a great job with Three Parts Dead, and I’m looking forward to having two stellar audiobooks out for this series.

Oh, and I saw some sketches for the next book cover today, and they’re GREAT but I can’t share them with you.  So hah!

In a Sense We’ve Come to Our Nation’s Capitol to Cash a Check

Today is the fiftieth anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech.

Go to the Smithsonian website and listen.

In the school in China where I taught, every student in English class memorized the “I have a dream” section of this speech.  The better students understood the words they were saying; others made the right sounds in the right order.  May we all be like the good students, even though that’s harder.

West Coast and Idaho Tour Starts Tomorrow!

Okay, folks!  Three Parts Dead is out in paperback and I’m getting myself psyched for a few days of wild wandering, good questions, and meeting new people.  One update, since the events page wasn’t clear, and Goodreads has it wrong: I’ll be at the Powell’s books on Hawthorne tomorrow, not the Powell’s in Beaverton.

And with that—I have a bunch of work left to do before I disappear into the Social World, and I think you would much rather I be a productive writer than a productive blogger.  So, with that, I’ll see you around!

Three Parts Dead in Paperback Today!

So you know how it is: you come back from Comic Con, reeling, because you’ve just spent 72 hours solid with 150,000 of your closest friends, and you retreat into editing your manuscript since you don’t actually have all that much time left to edit your manuscript and you’re completely socialled out.  And then you wake up on Tuesday and do the same thing, only to realize around noon that, wait a second, when was your paperback launch date again?

Check it out, guys.  I’m a paperback writer.

If this is your first visit to the site, hi!  Three Parts Dead got me nominated for the Campbell Award for Best New Writer, and a lot of people have been saying nice things about it (including io9, ThinkProgress, Strange Horizons, All Things UF, and others).

The paperback release is a big personal milestone, as I think I’ve mentioned before.  When I was a kid, I didn’t read in hardcover.  I discovered science fiction and fantasy through paperbacks, and when I got around to buying my own books, I didn’t have much money to go around, which meant paperbacks and the library.  The hardcover release of Three Parts Dead gave me a little frission for that reason—I wrote a book I would have loved to find when I was buying books out of my pizza money, but I couldn’t see how Teenage Max would have discovered the book I wrote.  Well, it’s out there now.  Enjoy, Teenage Max!  (And other readers, too!)

On a somewhat related note, The Ranting Dragon asked me to nominate a book in their search / contest to identify The Great Fantasy Novel.  I wrote about what that means, and why A Wizard of Earthsea is the obvious choice—read it here.



Apologies for my radio silence yesterday; the news, as you may understand, was a bit distracting.  I wrote my next scene, but beyond that… by nightfall I felt like I’d spent all day plugged into the Matrix.

I love that all the various branches of police and FBI worked together like gears meshing, conducted this careful and on-the-ball search of the Watertown area, and in the end we found the guy because, when we decided, well, he’s gone, some dude stepped out of his house and said, “Welp, better go check on my boat.”

Nothing shameful to the police in that.  “The harder I work, the luckier I get,” goes the saying.  But it’s such a wonderful ending: ultimately we do all this work and get the guy because the people pay paying attention.

For now, I’m going to go have brunch.