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Events and News from Borderlands Books

February, 2012

Chapter One - Event Information, News, and Special Features

Upcoming Author Events

We're pleased to announce that we've moved all of our author events to Borderlands Cafe, right next door at 870 Valencia Street! Now you can enjoy a snack or beverage while you listen to your favorite author.

Katharine Kerr, APOCALYPSE TO GO (DAW, Mass Market, $7.99) - Saturday, February 11th at 3:00 pm

SF in SF presents authors K.W. Jeter, Jay Lake & Rudy Rucker at the Variety Preview Room (582 Market St.) - Saturday, February 11th at 7:00 pm

SF in SF presents tea with Gail Carriger at the Variety Preview Room (582 Market St.) - Sunday, February 26th at 12:00 pm (This is a ticketed event.)

Gail Carriger, TIMELESS (Orbit, Mass Market, $7.99) - Sunday, February 26th at 6:00 pm

Tobias Buckell, ARCTIC RISING (Tor, Hardcover, $24.99) - Saturday, March 3rd at 3:00 pm

Kim Harrison, PERFECT BLOOD (Harper Voyager, Hardcover, $26.99) - Monday, March 5th at 7:00 pm

Matt Ruff, THE MIRAGE (Harper, Hardcover, $25.99) - Tuesday, March 6th at 7:00 pm

Meet and chat with author Andrew Fox, THE GOOD HUMOR MAN (Tachyon Publications, Trade Paperback, $14.95) - Wednesday, March 7th at 7:00 pm

Melanie Rawn, TOUCHSTONE (Tor, Hardcover, $25.99) - Saturday, March 10th at 3:00 pm

David Constantine, THE PILLARS OF HERCULES (Night Shade Books, Trade Paperback, $14.99) - Sunday, March 11th at 3:00 pm

(for more information check the end of this section)

Overheard at the Store

This is a feature that appears periodically, usually as we attend conventions and overhear things.  However, sometimes we overhear amusing tidbits even when we're not attending a convention:

"She described it in terms that I would have been much happier had she never described it in."

"Sometimes, being chewed on by a hyena is Nature's way of telling you to take a break."

"I don't care how cute he is, I don't want to [deleted] someone who wipes out species! Not okay."

"What do you mean, 'Which one?'?! Exactly how many new lesbian werewolf novels ARE there?"


* Charlie Jane Anders (of Writers With Drinks, Other Magazine, and fame) has organized a San Francisco Bookstore and Chocolate Crawl for Sunday, February 26th!  It starts at noon at Green Apple Books on Clement and ends at Modern Times Books on Florida Street, with stops in between at various book shops and purveyors of chocolate including Borderlands at 4:45 pm!  Complete details here:

* The Custom Made Theatre Company, who are producing the stage play of Cory Doctorow's "Little Brother", have extended the play's run through the end of February. See it, if you haven't yet -- it's really extraordinary.

* The deadlines for application to Clarion West are fast approaching.  The upcoming session (June 17 to July 27) will be taught by Mary Rosenblum, Hiromi Goto, George R.R. Martin, Connie Willis, Kelly Link and Gavin Grant, and Chuck Palahniuk.  For more information visit their website at

* Author Jim C. Hines recreates the poses from his (and other peoples') book covers & it is hilarious! Thanks, i09.

* Lots of genre novels, including GOOD OMENS by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, are among the list of 25 books selected to be given away during World Book Night. "Now in its second year, the event will take place on 23 April, marking both Unesco’s International Day Of The Book and Shakespeare’s birthday. Some 20,000 members of the public will be chosen to give away copies of their favourite title from the list, with one million books being  distributed at venues including hostels, pubs and hospitals in a bid to boost reading."  For complete details, and the rest of the list, which also features THE PLAYER OF GAMES by Iain M. Banks, MISERY by Stephen King, and LET THE RIGHT ONE IN by John Ajvde Lindqvist, see

* Stephen Colbert interviews Maurice Sendak, who is deadpan perfection. Hilarity ensues. Part 2 follows.  Sorry for the ads, which are un-skipable.

* We're sorry to report the death of author Christopher Samuel Youd, (who used the pseudonym John Christopher, among several others) at the age of 89. Youd was the prolific author of THE DEATH OF GRASS, The Tripod trilogy, and many others. You can find his obituary in the UK's Guardian newspaper here:

* Sadly, Dick Tufield, the voice of the "Lost in Space" robot, has also passed away at the age of 85.

Guest Contributor - Chelsea Quinn Yarbro

This month we are delighted to present a guest column from the legendary Chelsea Quinn Yarbro  (creator of the Vampire Saint-Germain) that details the creation of her most famous character's chronology. - Ed.

Building Timelines

When I began work on the Saint-Germain Cycle forty years ago, it took me almost a year to realize I didn't have to invent a vampire for the series, because there was a perfect candidate in the historical Comte de Saint-Germain, who claimed to be two-to-four thousand years old, did not eat or drink in public, and claimed to keep his youth by drinking the Elixir of Life. Once I decided upon him as the basis of my character, I began to research all the claims he made about places he had been and the people he knew, drawing up a timeline of his his claims and selecting the events with the greatest potential for stories. That took care of the first four books, HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA, THE PALACE, BLOOD GAMES, and PATH OF THE ECLIPSE. The fifth, TEMPTING FATE, took place well after the real man died, and was planned as a culmination of the experiences in the other four. The timeline I worked from was about six pages, and contained references to characters mentioned in each book who do not appear in the book, historical and fictional.

For almost eight years after I finished TEMPTING FATE, I did nothing with Saint-Germain; then, after doing the three Olivia books, A FLAME IN BYZANTIUM, CRUSADERS' TORCH, and CANDLES FOR D'ARTAGNAN  (the original title, referring to Mazarin's little fable about Death, her godson, and the candles in the cave, not to candles in church), and Madelaine de Montalia's book OUT OF THE HOUSE OF LIFE, which contains a great deal of Saint-Germain's earlier experiences, I found myself back with Saint-Germain, which meant returning to the timeline to establish some of the events the historical man had discussed and to insert them into the Count's biography. That got me through DARKER JEWELS, but required that I make a more comprehensive chronology for Saint-Germain, since my much-scribbled-on six pages were hardly sufficient to what I needed to keep track of, and I began to go through the books and stories to cull those crucial events and characters, particularly those I had not yet written about, since I learned my lesson with Olivia, who is mentioned in passing in HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA as having died about a century before; at the time I had no idea who she was, but I found out in THE PALACE, and almost every book thereafter. By adding Olivia's timeline to the chronology, I could keep better track of them; I did the same thing with Madelaine a little later on.

The chronology gets updated with every book, and I check the new setting against as much as has gone before as I have written down. It is a very handy reference, and as I add more books to the Cycle, the characters and incidents in the books, as well as those referred to, are added to the chronology. Every now and then something slips through the cracks, and then my most committed readers take great glee in pointing out my errors. Most I correct in the chronology, a few I don't, since explanations/expansions and such are planned for later stories or books. And let me observe that often the small details in the shorter works are the most difficult to keep track of; the very tight structure needed in short fiction can become so compact that I can lose track of a small-but-important reference.

The chronology is just that - chronological, beginning with Saint-Germain's birth and coming up to 2008. But a word of warning: I've learned the hard way not to distribute the chronology itself, for the last time I did, I ended up taking six months to explain to over-eager fans that they may not write their own stories to fill in the blanks, and what would happen legally if they did, since it would constitute copyright infringement, a serious federal offence. I've already been through dealing with willful infringement, and have no desire to do so again.

About Chelsea Quinn Yarbro:
Chelsea Quinn Yarbro is the first woman to be named a Living Legend by the International Horror Guild and is one of only two women ever to be named as Grand Master of the World Horror Convention (2003). In 1995, Yarbro was the only novelist guest of the Romanian government for the First World Dracula Congress, sponsored by the Transylvanian Society of Dracula, the Romanian Bureau of Tourism and the Romanian Ministry of Culture.  Yarbro is best known as the creator of the heroic vampire, the Count Saint-Germain. With her creation of Saint-Germain in HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA (St. Martin's Press, 1978), she delved into history and vampiric literature and subverted the standard myth to invent the first vampire who was more honorable, humane, and heroic than most of the humans around him. The 25th volume of the Saint-Germain Cycle, COMMEDIA DELLA MORTE, will be published by Tor in March 2012. The first three books, HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA, THE PALACE and BLOOD GAMES, are all available as e-books from .

For more information on Yarbro's many books and interests, check out her website at

Top Sellers At Borderlands

1) Distrust That Particular Flavor by William Gibson
2) Nested Scrolls by Rudy Rucker
3) Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
4) A Dance With Dragons by George R.R. Martin
5) A Path to Coldness of Heart by Glen Cook
6) 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami
7) Reamde by Neal Stephenson
8) Seed by Rob Ziegler
9) Snuff by Terry Pratchett
10) Children of the Sky by Vernor Vinge

1) A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin
2) A Clash of Kings by George R.R. Martin
3) A Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin
4) A Feast for Crows by George R.R. Martin
5) House Name by Michelle West
6) The Fuller Memorandum by Charles Stross
7) Altered Carbon by Richard Morgan
8) A Hard Day's Knight by Simon R. Green
9) Up Against It by M. L. Locke
10) Lost Gate by Orson Scott Card

Trade Paperbacks
1) The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
2) Among Others by Jo Walton
3) The Liminal People by Ayize Jama-Everett
4) Empire State by Adam Christopher
5) Blueprints of the Afterlife by Ryan Boudinot

Book Club Info

The QSF&F Book Club will meet on Sunday, February 12th, at 5 pm to discuss THIS IS NOT A GAME by Walter Jon Williams.  Please contact the group leader, Christopher Rodriguez, at, for more information.

The Science Fiction and Fantasy Book Club will meet on Sunday, February 19th, at 6 pm to discuss ARIEL by Steve Boyett.  The author will be present for this discussion.  The book for March 18 is THE THREE STIGMATA OF PALMER ELDRITCH by Philip K. Dick.  Please contact for more information.

Upcoming Event Details

Note: We have moved all of our author events to Borderlands Cafe, directly next door to the bookstore at 870 Valencia Street.  We now have more room, and you can enjoy your hot cocoa while listening to your favorite author!

Katharine Kerr, APOCALYPSE TO GO (DAW, Mass Market, $7.99) Saturday, February 11th at 3:00 pm - APOCALYPSE TO GO is the third in the Nola O'Grady urban fantasy series by Katherine Kerr. From the publisher, "Nola O'Grady has enough trouble when a were-leopard accuses her of receiving stolen property. But when her younger brother Michael goes searching for their missing father, he lands himself and his brother, Sean, in a world of hurt -- quite literally -- in a deviant world version of San Francisco. Can Nola and her partner in the Apocalypse Squad, Israeli Interpol agent Ari Nathan, find her brothers in time to save them from death by radiation poisoning? The search will lead them through a city of secrets, but the worst secret of all lurks at the heart of the only thing Nola loves more than Ari: her family." Don't miss this explosive entry in the newest series by one of fantasy's most established and respected authors!

SF in SF presents authors K.W. Jeter, Jay Lake & Rudy Rucker at the Variety Preview Room (582 Market St.) Saturday, February 11th at 7:00 pm - We are very excited to help SF in SF welcome these authors!  Each author will read a selection from their work, followed by Q&A from the audience moderated by author Terry Bisson.  Authors will schmooze & sign books after in the lounge. Books available for sale courtesy of Borderlands Books.  Seating is limited, so first come, first seated.  Bar proceeds benefit Variety Childrens Charity - learn more at <>.  We REALLY encourage you to take BART into the City, or use MUNI to get here - parking can be problematic in San Francisco, to say the least.  We are less than one block away from the Montgomery St. station.  Trust us - you don't want to be looking for parking and be late for the event!  Phone (night of event) 415-572-1015.  Questions? Email

SF in SF presents tea with Gail Carriger at the Variety Preview Room (582 Market St.) Sunday, February 26th at 12:00 pm (This is a ticketed event.) - Please see or for details.

Gail Carriger, TIMELESS (Orbit, Mass Market, $7.99) Sunday, February 26th at 6:00 pm - Please join us to meet Gail Carriger & toast TIMELESS, the final book in the witty and stylish adventures of Alexia Tarabotti!  Many entertaining moments are promised; we expect werewolves, repartee and regrettable hats.

Tobias Buckell, ARCTIC RISING (Tor, Hardcover, $24.99) Saturday, March 3rd at 3:00 pm - Tobias S. Buckell tackles the controversial subject of global warming in his newest novel, ARCTIC RISING. From the publisher: "Global warming has transformed the Earth, and it's about to get even hotter. The Arctic Ice Cap has all but melted, and the international community is racing desperately to claim the massive amounts of oil beneath the newly accessible ocean. Enter the Gaia Corporation. Its two founders have come up with a plan to roll back global warming. Thousands of tiny mirrors floating in the air can create a giant sunshade, capable of redirecting heat and cooling the earth's surface. They plan to terraform Earth to save it from itself‚ but in doing so, they have created a superweapon the likes of which the world has never seen. Anika Duncan is an airship pilot for the underfunded United Nations Polar Guard. She's intent on capturing a smuggled nuclear weapon that has made it into the Polar Circle and bringing the smugglers to justice." Come hear Tobias read from what Publisher's Weekly called "an intimate techno-thriller about an ecological showdown in an ice-free Arctic" and sign copies of his new novel.

Kim Harrison, PERFECT BLOOD (Harper Voyager, Hardcover, $26.99) Monday, March 5th at 7:00 pm - We're very excited to welcome fan favorite (& New York Times Bestseller) Kim Harrison back to Borderlands!  From the book: "Ritually murdered corpses are appearing across Cincinnati, terrifying amalgams of human and 'other.' Pulled in to help investigate by the I.S. and the FIB, former witch turned day-walking demon Rachel Morgan soon realizes a horrifying truth: a human hate group is trying to create its own demons to destroy all Inderlanders, and to do so, it needs her blood.  She's faced vampires, witches, werewolves, demons, and more, but humanity itself might be her toughest challenge yet."

Matt Ruff, THE MIRAGE (Harper, Hardcover, $25.99) Tuesday, March 6th at 7:00 pm - Borderlands is delighted to host a reading and signing with the beloved author of BAD MONKEYS; SEWER, GAS AND ELECTRIC; FOOL ON THE HILL; and others!  Matt Ruff's books are all amazing, and each one is completely unlike all the others.  His newest novel, THE MIRAGE, is a very unusual take on the events of November 9th, 2001, when planes hijacked by Christian terrorists flew into the the Tigris and Euphrates World Trade Towers in Baghdad, and the United Arab States declared a War on Terror.  Years later, captured Christian terrorists all claim that the world they are living in is a mirage, and in the "real" world, America is a superpower. . . .

Meet and chat with author Andrew Fox, THE GOOD HUMOR MAN (Tachyon Publications, Trade Paperback, $14.95) - Wednesday, March 7th at 7:00 pm - We're pleased to host an informal chat and signing with Andrew Fox, author of FAT WHITE VAMPIRE BLUES, BRIDE OF THE FAT WHITE VAMPIRE and THE GOOD HUMOR MAN.  Bring your questions for this edgy and frequently comic author!

Melanie Rawn, TOUCHSTONE (Tor, Hardcover, $25.99) Saturday, March 10th at 3:00 pm - We're delighted to welcome the prolific and talented Melanie Rawn back to Borderlands!  From the book jacket: "Cayden Silversun is part Elven, part Fae, part human Wizard -- and all rebel. His aristocratic mother would have him follow his father to the Royal Court, to make a high society living off the scraps of kings. But Cade lives and breathes for the theater, and he’s good -- very, very good. With his company, he’ll enter the highest reaches of society and power, as an honored artist -- or die trying. Cade combines the talents of Merlin, Shakespeare, and John Lennon: a wholly charming character in a remarkably original fantasy world created by a mistress of the art.  Although TOUCHSTONE can stand alone, it is the first book of a brilliant, utterly engaging new fantasy series from the author of the bestselling Dragon Prince series."

David Constantine, THE PILLARS OF HERCULES (Night Shade Books, Trade Paperback, $14.99) Sunday, March 11th at 3:00 pm - We're pleased to welcome author David Constantine, presenting his novel THE PILLARS OF HERCULES! "Alexander the Great, warlord of Macedon, is the terror of the world. Persia, Egypt, Athens . . . one after another, mighty nations are falling before the fearsome conqueror. Some say Alexander is actually the son of Zeus, king of the gods, and the living incarnation of Hercules himself. Worse yet, some say Alexander believes this . . . . The ambitious prince is aided in his conquest by unstoppable war-machines based on the forbidden knowledge of his former tutor, the legendary scientist-mage known as Aristotle. Greek fire, mechanical golems, and gigantic siege-engines lay waste to Alexander's enemies as his armies march relentlessly west -- toward the very edge of the world. Beyond the Pillars of Hercules, past the gateway to the outer ocean, lies the rumored remnants of Atlantis: ancient artifacts of such tremendous power that they may be all that stands between Alexander and conquest of the entire world."

Borderlands event policy - all events are free of charge.  You are welcome to bring copies of an author's books purchased elsewhere to be autographed (but we do appreciate it if you purchase something while at the event).  For most events you are welcome to bring as many books as you wish for autographs.  If you are unable to attend the event we will be happy to have a copy of any of the author's available books signed or inscribed for you.  We can then either hold the book(s) until you can come in to pick them up or we can ship to you.  Just give us a call or drop us an email.  If you live out of town, you can also ship us books from your collection to be signed for a nominal fee.  Call or email for details.

Dispatches from the Border
Editor - Jude Feldman
Assistant Editor - Alan Beatts
Guest Contributor - Chelsea Quinn Yarbro

All contents unless otherwise noted are the property of

Borderlands Books
866 Valencia St.
San Francisco, CA  94110

Note - Guest article, "Creating Timelines" by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro copyright Chelsea Quinn Yarbro, 2012.

Comments and suggestions should be directed to



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