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April 2010:
Not allowed to take photos of the Constitution
Posted by JVJ @ 11:20 pm
April 29th : 2010
So I give you the dinosaur exhibit at the Smithsonian instead. Today I went to the National Archives to view the original Unites States Constitution, the Bill of Rights and the Magna Carta. Amazing, inspiring documents, one and all.

We have more sightings over on the Secret Map of World Domination. Sweden has now fallen to Watcher’s advances. If you’re in Norway or Finland I’d be very afraid.
Natural History Museum
Posted by JVJ @ 10:56 pm
April 28th : 2010
I had a wonderful day at the Smithsonian Natural History Museum in DC. There are so many wonders on display you can’t help but feel inspired. I spent two hours taking notes in the Mineral Room. The museum’s biggest draw is the Hope Diamond, which is 45 carats of blue sparkliness, but it wasn’t my favorite thing. That would be the meteors. Things that fall from space are infinitely wonderful to me. Here’s one that especially caught my eye. It’s three feet wide and almost pure iron. Can you imagine how much it must weigh?
More sightings
Posted by JVJ @ 10:37 pm
April 27th : 2010
In an unexpectedly bold move, Watcher has sailed across the Mediterranean and taken Spain. More sightings on our Secret Map of World Domination. It’s turning out to be quite a bit of fun. I really enjoy receiving the photos. Thank you. And of course you know the drill. If you spot the book let us know and we’ll pin you on the map.
Photo courtesy of Zeltia
Out and about in DC
Posted by JVJ @ 9:15 pm
April 26th : 2010
I’m still I DC, enjoying the sights of the capitol. Yesterday I went to National Gallery and shuffled through room after room of magnificent paintings.
Watcher Spottings
Posted by JVJ @ 5:48 pm
April 25th : 2010
This most excellent photo was sent to us by Becz in Katoomba, New South Wales, Australia. We’re tracking Watcher as it moves across three continents in its Secret Bid for World Domination. If you spot it let us know.
Italian kitteh with excess crunchies
Posted by Biggie @ 4:52 pm
April 23rd : 2010
Photo courtesy of Paolo L
Posted by JVJ @ 2:20 pm
April 22nd : 2010
As you can see from this photo taken yesterday, I’m in DC. It was a beautiful day for strolling around the capitol and seeing the sights.
More sightings
Posted by JVJ @ 10:50 am
April 20th : 2010
Our Secret Plan For World Domination is coming along nicely. Watcher has now taken been the Southern Hemisphere. It’s only a matter of time before it appears in a town near you.
Biggie's Dream
Posted by Biggie @ 11:40 am
April 19th : 2010
Watcher out and about
Posted by JVJ @ 11:45 am
April 17th : 2010
Without further ado let’s get straight to the links. First up is Pat’s Fantasy Hotlist where you can read Chapter 3 of Watcher of the Dead in its entirety. It features Raina, a departing corpse, returning warriors and the arrival of the mysterious Croserwoman Chella Gloyal.

Second is an article I wrote for Orbit (my UK publisher) entitled Where Do You Get Your Ideas. I think it’s an engaging subject and I’d be interested to hear your thoughts on it. I’ll be responding to comments over at Orbit.

The third link is to a review of Watcher over at I Am Currently Reading. Alex’s review is thoughtful and interesting, but does contains spoilers in the second half so be warned.

Last but not least is our Watcher’s Secret Map of World Domination. Sightings are coming in daily and we’re trying to keep up. What’s become obvious is the fact that we’re rapidly running out of space in Silicon Valley and the UK. Germany and New York are also beginning to fill up. Undeterred we’re manning the lines, tracking new sightings. If you spot the book let us know and send a photo if you can.
A shout out to French readers
Posted by JVJ @ 12:45 pm
April 16th : 2010
If you’re visiting from France: Bonjour. Thanks for stopping by and thanks for reading the books. I’m really delighted with the new French editions of La Ronce d’Or, and Livres des Mots. I’d especially like to thank Audrey Petit, my editor at Livre de Poche, and Guillaume Fournier who translates the books into French. Merci, JV.
Some things you just can’t explain
Posted by JVJ @ 12:18 pm
April 15th : 2010
For instance this photograph, taken on Tuesday. I’m about to taste the world’s worst cocktail. Even before I tried it, you can tell I was skeptical. Why I was tasting it is pretty much inexplicable, suffice to say pirates, Captain Kirk and a certain crunchie-obsessed kitteh were involved.

Another thing that’s hard to explain is that yesterday while I was heading down the hill to get groceries, a black-footed ferret crossed my path. Really. It dashed across the road ahead of me. It had a lovely golden coat and cute black feet. Is it good luck to have a ferret cross your path? It certainly felt like it.

The final thing that’s hard to explain, but pretty nice (like the ferret but unlike the cocktail) is that the US edition of Watcher of the Dead went back to press yesterday--less than 24hrs after its official publication. That’s pretty great, so thank you for your encouragement and support.

Watcher’s Secret Map of World Domination has more sightings to record. Head over and check it out. And if you spot the book yourself send a report and we’ll pin you on the map.
Watcher Watch XIV
Posted by JVJ @ 9:57 am
April 14th : 2010
Watcher of the Dead is finally out in the US, UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. We’re tracking the sightings here on our Secret Map of World Domination. Paul put it up last night and I think it's great, but it’s looking a little bare. If you’ve seen Watcher or have it *let me know* where you are and we’ll post the sighting on the map. And if you have a photo, send it. If you’d like to be in the photo along with the book, that’s good also. Very good.

It’s exciting when a new book comes out but also nerve-wracking. Will people like it? Will they buy it? Will the reviews be good? As the book was only published yesterday, it’s early days. Fingers crossed. I hope you enjoy it. I really appreciate your support, both on the internet and in the real world. Thanks, JV.
Why iz lizard running away?
Posted by Biggie @ 11:12 am
April 13th : 2010
Watcher Watch XIII
Posted by JVJ @ 9:41 am
April 12th : 2010
Watcher of the Dead has been spotted in three states over the weekend: New York, North Carolina and Texas. It should be everywhere by the end of the week, including Arizona (where I’m standing in the above shot). Judging from the order of sightings...Watcher is on a an east-west trajectory. Let me know when it hits your town--UK, US, Australia, Canada, etc. And send a photo.
Watcher Watch XII
Posted by JVJ @ 7:50 am
April 11th : 2010
Watcher has begun hitting the shelves in the US. It was spotted in Poughkeepsie, NY, on Friday evening. In the meantime, you can try your luck at winning one of three copies over at Pat's Fantasy Hotlist.
Watcher Watch XI
Posted by JVJ @ 7:40 am
April 10th : 2010
These arrived in the post today, my author’s copies of the UK editions of Watcher of the Dead. You’re looking at a hardback (right) and a large paperback. They’re both being published at the same time. I checked; they have the same number of pages, but there's a difference with the covers. Can you spot it?
A word from your sponsor
Posted by Biggie @ 9:46 am
April 9th : 2010
Watcher Watch X
Posted by JVJ @ 7:48 am
April 8th : 2010
Still no US sighting of Watcher of the Dead, but it should hit stores soon. Very soon. The fine folks over at Fantasy Literature have managed to snag an early copy and have posted a review which you can read here. They liked it.

In some ways, Watcher is the wish-fulfillment book of the series. We learn what happens to Angus Lok after he finds his family dead and his house burned to the ground. Ash March reaches the Heart of the Sull. And Raif...well...Raif finally gets to wield the sword the Sull name Sul Ji and humans call Loss. None of them, neither Angus, Raif nor Ash, get what they expect though...

Hot and breezy here today, but at least the ground is still beneath my feet. No discernible aftershocks to report today, just brief tremors here and there.
Author eats breakfast plus bonus aftershocks
Posted by JVJ @ 6:20 am
April 7th : 2010
I use a cropped version of this photograph as my calender shot some months ago (the headshot that appears in the upper right-hand corner of this page), and I thought it would be fun to show you what I was actually doing when the photograph was taken. Eating scrambled eggs and toast at a camp table in Big Sur.

We’ve had a lot of aftershocks following Sunday’s earthquake. One early Monday morning had me jumping out of my bed.  Things seemed to have calmed down now, but you can see from this live earthquake map of the area, that there is still a lot of seismic activity going on. At 7.2, it was the biggest earthquake to hit San Diego in decades, yet damage was minimal due to strict earthquake-tolerance building codes. My timber-framed house rocked and rolled along with the quake.
No one getz teh booksie
Posted by Biggie @ 6:37 am
April 6th : 2010
Watcher Watch IX plus bonus Earthquake
Posted by JVJ @ 7:24 am
April 5th : 2010
It’s been an interesting weekend. My author copies of Watcher of the Dead arrived in the post, so that means the book should be at a store near you this week. Once you spot it send a photo. The other thing that happened was an earthquake on Sunday afternoon. It was pretty long and pretty strong. Reports have it as a 7.2, centered in Baja California. The house rocked from side to side, the lights swung and metal thingies in the chimney started to clang. After about thirty seconds I thought, “I’d better leave the house, this is getting worse”. Less than a minute later it was over. Aftershocks continue to shake the house though; there was just one a few minutes ago. Between the wildfires and the quake, I think I’ve had enough natural disasters for a while.
Iz keeping fitz
Posted by Biggie @ 10:05 am
April 4th : 2010
After zombies attacked the camp...
Posted by JVJ @ 6:43 am
April 3rd : 2010
On Thin Ice
Posted by JVJ @ 2:47 pm
April 2nd : 2010
Here’s J.P. Targete’s wonderful preliminary sketch for the US cover of A Cavern of Black Ice (Tor edition). It illustrates the scene where Ash is pursued onto a frozen lake by Marafice Eye, Sarga Veys and a sept of horsemen. This is the actual moment where Sarga Veys draws sorcery, killing the mist that conceals Ash March.
Excerpt from A Cavern of Black Ice
        Something prickled the back of Ash’s neck, like an insect’s touch or a fingernail scored down her spine. Fear came alive in her chest. Everything was quiet. When did I last hear the sept’s horses? She found she could not remember. She didn’t want to turn and look behind her. Didn’t want to see what was there.

        “Stop where you are, Asarhia March,” came a voice from close behind. “Or we’ll shoot the horse.”

        Ash looked back. Four men rode on the ice thirty paces behind her. Marafice Eye, Sarga Veys, a watch brother with a thin face and a nose made ugly by scar tissue, and a fourth man farther behind. Thin Face had a cranked and loaded crossbow resting in the crook of his arm. Marafice Eye was hunched low on his horse, his arms drawn close to his body, his gloved hands knotted at the reins. Beneath the wire of his birdhelm, his eyes glinted like lenses of ice. Sarga Veys rode in the middle; his pale and unprotected head rising from the leather plumage of the Rive Watch cloak like something already dead. He was breathing hard, and a film of gray sweat shone on his nose and brow.

        Then it struck her. There was no mist between them. She shouldn't be able to see them at all; the mist was too thick for that. Ahead she could barely see five paces, yet behind her a tunnel of clear air had been created.

        She swallowed hard. It was an aberration, wrong in every way like water running upstream or the sun coming out at midnight. The mist had been held back, molded, forced to do the bidding of one man. It made Ash’s flesh crawl. So this is what sorcery is? Not gaudy tricks and flashing lights, control over nature.

        Tht. An arrow shot over the heads of the three men. Even as Ash recognized the crude shape of the shaft and the horsehair fletchings at its tail, she kicked the bay into a gallop. Angus must have fired high because he couldn’t be sure of where she was and didn’t want to risk hurting her. It wasn’t much, but it was a distraction. As she lowered her body over the bay’s neck, she heard the crisp thuc of the crossbow discharging. The bay was in the process of switching its path and the crossbolt scraped along his rump, taking hair and skin with it.

        Ash pressed her lips together to stop herself from crying out. Horse blood spilled over her boots. Beneath the gelding’s hooves, the ice began to creak. Horses charged after them, tracing the bay’s path. Marafice Eye shouted an obscenity at Sarga Veys. Ash heard metal rattle as Thin Face cranked the bow for a second shot.

        The bay galloped faster and faster. Looking down, Ash saw where the ice had grown darker as the deep lightless water began to shine through. Her foster father had once told her that a man could stand on freshwater ice as thin as a hen’s egg. But what about a girl on a horse? She could recall no wisdom to cover that.

        Ash felt the ice move beneath her. The bay veered keenly to the left. One of its hooves broke the surface with a sharp, wet snap. Crack lines began to appear in the ice, running through the bay’s legs like fast little ants. Lather foamed along the gelding’s neck as it danced across the fracturing plates. Ash felt freezing water spit against her face. Behind her, ice snapped with the force of a felled tree. Someone screamed. A horse squealed, high and terrible like something being slaughtered. Ice pitched and rolled, causing the lake water to swell. The shelf of ice the bay ran across bobbed like a raft in a storm.

        Ash risked a glance over her shoulder. Frost smoke spewed from the surface in a shower of blue sparks. Horses and men plunged through the erupting ice field, arms flung outwards, eyes wide with terror, fingers clutching air. Marafice Eye’s horse plummeted into the lake, its forelegs kicking wildly, its rider clawing at its neck. The last thing she saw before turning her back was a pair of gloved hands struggling for a handhold in the cold black water.

        Ash rode across the ice, dancing with the bay.
Tactics Behind Health Care Vote Finally Emerge
Posted by Lola Profi @ 12:01 am
April 1st : 2010
On March 19th, two days before the historic Health Care vote, President Obama summoned Vice President Joe Biden, Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel and other trusted advisers to the Oval Office for an emergency closed door meeting. According to Washington insiders, the president wasted no time getting to the point. “This book kept me up all night,” he told the select group of four as he held up a copy of J.V. Jones’s Watcher of the Dead. “Do you know what this means?”

Biden chuckled, “I guess Michelle’s not too happy,” he replied.

“No,” continued the president. “If we give this to the Republicans before the Health Care vote, they’ll read through the night and none of them will turn up in the morning. We’ll be able to pass whatever we like.”

“Excellent plan,” said Emanuel. “I’m on it. And I’ve always been fond of purple.”

“It’s what happens when you mix red and blue,” added Biden.

According to sources, the president frowned quizzically at the vice president. “That’s a wrap, guys,” he said, standing. “I won’t be available for the next couple of hours. I’ve got to read the ending.”

“But we had a lunch date, Mr President,” said the guy in the red tie.

“Tough luck, buddy,” replied the president, “I’ve already asked the White House chef to bring me a Blue Moon and some healthy snacks.”
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Link List:
Watcher of the Dead
Tor Books
Orbit Books
J.P. Targete
Marc Simonetti