Kelly McCullough writes fantasy, science fiction, and books for kids of varying ages. He lives in Wisconsin with his physics professor wife and a small herd of cats. His novels include the WebMage and Fallen Blade series — Penguin/ACE, and the forthcoming School for Sidekicks — Feiwel and Friends/Macmillan. His short fiction has appeared in numerous magazines and anthologies. He also dabbles in science fiction as science education with The Chronicles of the Wandering Star — part of an NSF-funded science curriculum — and the science comic Hanny & the Mystery of the Voorwerp, which he co-authored and co-edited — funding provided by NASA and the Hubble Space Telescope. Kelly on Twitter, Facebook, G+

Writing Environment: Minimum Conditions

April 14, 2014 in About Kelly, Musings, Writing

What I need to be able to write:*

1) 10-12 square feet to myself.
2) A comfortable seat and someplace to put my feet up. Not sure why the feet being up matters so much, but it does. I find it almost impossible to work at a desk or table. Comfortable didn’t used to matter as much, but my back isn’t as forgiving as it was when I was thirty.
3) Relative quiet. White noise or instrumental music is fine, but lyrics or interesting conversation kill me dead.
4) 1-1/2 or more hours when I know I can just write.

Those are the necessities. It also helps if I have:

A) Power, though the longer battery life on each new laptop has made that less of an issue.
B) Caffeine readily available, tea or diet soda by preference, something that I can sip when I pause to think.
C) A nice view, preferably of green space or nature, though a college campus is fine to. A little bit of visual distraction that I can watch but don’t have to.

That’s really about it.

*This came up in comments in response to Samaire Provost on a facebook post and I thought some of the folks who wander by the blog might find it interesting.

Friday Cat Blogging

April 11, 2014 in Cat Things, Friday Cat Blogging

Do you know what I want?

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That!*

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That’d be awesome!

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Yeah, well I want to be an editor. This red pen is delicious!

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I want you all to go away and let me sleep in the sun.

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Seconded!

 

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Thirded! For once the cats have a good idea.

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*Matt Kuchta has been channeling the cats again…

Friday Cat Blogging

April 5, 2014 in Cat Things, Friday Cat Blogging

Nip, it’s entirely covered with NIP!

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Is it? I hadn’t notic—is that my paw?

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OH WOW

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Oh my dog, have you tried this stuff? Are you kidding, I AM this stuff.

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Nip, you say? It does smell like it.

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Maybe Ima take a little nip nap now…

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I have no nip and I cannot stone…

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Friday Cat Blogging

March 28, 2014 in Cat Things, Friday Cat Blogging

WHAT THE HELL IS THAT?

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This?

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Yes, THAT!

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Oh, Laura’s Shade is a jellyfiss…

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I knew that. Castle Gaiman cats can all see true shadows.

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What’s that down there?

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Shiny BEADS and TRINKETS!

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Retro Friday Cat Blogging

March 28, 2014 in Cat Things, Friday Cat Blogging, Pets and other friends, Reblogging Project

The committee for feline domination takes a meeting

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I will killz teh chipmunk with mah mind

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I needs mah beauty sleep

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Well, I needs mah cutie sleep, so there

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Waz otter in previous life, sometimes has flashbacks

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What? Dis da gluten free shelf, right? I’z 100 percent gluten free

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(Originally published on the Wyrdsmiths blog June 26 2009, and original comments may be found there. Reposted and reedited as part of the reblogging project)

Time To Publication

March 27, 2014 in About Kelly, Publishing, Writing

John Scalzi is talking about why debut novelists are so often so much older than debut musicians or actors. I commented over there with my own timeline and it seemed worth noting it here too. Please feel free to post your own both here and there.

My novel publishing timeline:

1967 – 1991: Time spent learning to write well enough to write a novel (ages 0—26).

1991: Wrote first complete novel (age 26)

1992–1993: Wrote two more novels, one of which is possibly publishable with rewrite (28)

1993-1998: Wrote a bunch of short stories while trying to sell all three initial novels (31)

1999: Started selling shorts and returned to novels, writing the book that would ultimately sell first (32)

2000: Got agent who started marketing novel (33)

2000-2005: Wrote three more novels, all still looking for publishers (38)

2005: Contract signed for that debut novel (38)

2006: Debut novel published (39)

(Originally published on the Wyrdsmiths blog June 24 2009, and original comments may be found there. Reposted and reedited as part of the reblogging project)

Chocobo/Kodachrome

March 24, 2014 in Silly

To the tune of KODACHROME, and with apologies to Paul Simon, Art Garfunkel, and Square Enix, I present, CHOCOBO:

When I think back
On all the flans I killed while grinding
It’s a wonder
I leveled up at all
Even though my lack of magic
Has really hurt me
I can ride that bird on down the trail

Chocobo
You’ve got those nice bright feathers
You’re made of the golds of autumn
Makes me think all the world’s a racing day, kwe-eh!
I got me some gysahl greens
I love to ride that crazy bird
So Mama don’t take my chocobo away

If you took all the potions I used
When I was hurting
And poured them together in one pot
I know they’d never bring back
My missing moogle
And everything look worse with eight bit graphics

Chocobo
He’s got those nice bright feathers
That remind us of the golds of autumn
Makes me think all the world’s a racing day, kwe-eh!
I got me some gy-sahl greens
I love to ride that crazy bird
So Mama don’t take my chocobo away

Mama don’t my chocobo awaaaay!

Mama don’t my chocobo awaaaay!

Mama don’t my chocobo awaaaay!

Mama don’t take my chocobo
Mama don’t take my chocobo
Mama don’t my chocobo awaaaay!

Mama don’t take my chocobo
Mama don’t take my chocobo
Mama don’t my chocobo awaaaay!

Mama don’t take my chocobo
(Leave your bird so far from home)
Mama don’t my chocobo awaaaay!

Retro Friday Cat Blogging

March 24, 2014 in Cat Things, Friday Cat Blogging, Pets and other friends, Reblogging Project

Blob cat is blobing

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It is the east and Juliet the sun.

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Gaming cats atop their custom chair rig

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Helpy cat helpying to make the bed

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Lazer cat is in ur closet fryin ur shirtz

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(Originally published on the Wyrdsmiths blog June 19 2009, and original comments may be found there. Reposted and reedited as part of the reblogging project)

Friday Cat Blogging

March 22, 2014 in Cat Things, Friday Cat Blogging, Pets and other friends

Why do we want to climb the thumb-monkey? Because the thumb-monkey is there!

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You realize that makes no sense, right?

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Tell it to the Meglet, she’s the one who thought it was clever.

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I stole it from Mallory, sue me…hang on, is that my tail? Gotta go, bye.

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Y’all are arguing about quotes when there’s sun to be had? Screw that.

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Have you ever really tasted your thumb?

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No, but I’ve tasted the iPad and it is DELICIOUS. It tastes of virtual fish.

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Seriously? Virtual fish? Mallory? Because it’s there? Y’all are an embarrassment.

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Guest cats courtesy of Kim and Jonny,

Well, and as always, Coconut courtesy of Neil Gaiman

Friday Cat Blogging

March 14, 2014 in Cat Things, Friday Cat Blogging, Pets and other friends

Awk, Polly wants a dead mousie, awk!

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Sometimes the places the thumb-monkey’s brain goes worries me…

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Sometimes?

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Mmm, dead mousies…

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Help, they turned off my gravity and now I’m floating away!

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