Troubling News

If you’ve ever been to the Northeastern Writers Conference, a.k.a. NECon, you know who Bob Booth is. (Those who haven’t been to NECon might know him too as a writer, editor, and past chairman of the World Fantasy Convention.) Recently, some troubling news was shared by Bob’s daughter, Sara, regarding Bob’s health. You may have heard already, but if not, I’m reprinting Sara’s mass email here:

Dear Necon Community,

It is with the heaviest of hearts that we write to you today to ask for your prayers, good thoughts, and positive energy for our Papa Necon, Bob Booth. As some of you may have heard, Bob came down with bronchitis in November. He was sent for a chest x-ray and it came back showing a shadow that the doctor didn’t like. Further tests revealed spots on his lung and lesions on his liver, which led to still further tests. He has been diagnosed with stage four extensive small cell lung cancer and stage four liver cancer. The doctors also believe that it has spread to his bones, and he is undergoing further testing to discover if it has reached his brain. Early next week, when all of the results are in, decisions will be made regarding the wisdom and usefulness of chemotherapy and other treatments, but it must be said that options are limited.

Over the more than thirty years since Necon’s founding, it has become ever clearer that Necon is more than a convention. It has been called summer camp, but always feels like more of a family reunion, and our Necon family grows and changes with every passing year, spreading further and adding new members. Bob has been the center of that family–truly Papa Necon–since the very first day, and it is one of his greatest pleasures. We trust that many of you will want to send Bob your thoughts, kind words, and well wishes, and we gratefully encourage you to do so. Prayers and positive energy are powerful and would be deeply appreciated by all of us.

Cards and letters can be sent directly to Bob at home. Bob Booth, 67 Birchland Ave Pawtucket, Ri 02860. If you’d like to send e-mails and want to be sure they reach him, the best way is to send them to Sara, and she will see that he receives them. Her e-mail is saracalia08@gmail.com.

Thank you for your kindness, past, present, and future.

Sincerely,
The Necon Family

My thoughts are with Bob, as well as his wife Mary, his children Dan and Sara, and his whole extended family. The road ahead will be challenging for all of them, but I hope it helps them to know there is a large group of well wishers, including everyone who has ever attended NECon, sending their thoughts and prayers.

The Year Ahead

Happy New Year, everyone!

2013 marks the year Dying Is My Business (formerly Not Dead Yet) comes out from St. Martin’s Press!

I’m very excited about this. Waiting until fall to see its release will be difficult, but well worth it. I’ve had books published before, but always by small and independent presses. This will be my first time publishing with one of the major houses. It’s a dream come true, and I couldn’t be more thrilled!

There weren’t a lot of edits to make in the manuscript, thankfully. That’s what you get for working on something for two full years to make sure it’s in the best shape it can be. (And even after all that, we still found some thoroughly embarrassing typos!) But what few edits there were are all done and handed in. Now I’m just waiting to see some cover proofs. My amazing agent, Richard Curtis, got St. Martin’s to grant me cover consultation in the contract. Of course, consultation isn’t the same thing as approval, but it’s nice to at least be a part of process so I can make sure the art doesn’t feature any Jim Hines poses.

Over the coming months, I’ll post updates on the novel’s progress through the production phase and, eventually, onto bookstore shelves. It should be interesting, funny, infuriating, exhausting, and rewarding — just like most things in life. So I hope you’ll come along with me. It’s been quite a long road getting here, and the road in front of me looks like it’s going to be one hell of a ride.

 

 

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