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February 26, 2005

I Know, I'm Weak...


...but, hey, it's the first time I've seen my name on a bestseller list of any sort, so I wanted to share. And I'm next to Yoda, who is also short and balding. We're a matching pair, we are.

Krissy has been reading through all the entries in the "mock Scalzi" contest and has found several she likes. As for me, let me just say: You're all mean. Funny, yes. But mean.

Back to my non-Whatever-y typing.

Posted by john at February 26, 2005 04:19 PM

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Harry | February 26, 2005 04:51 PM

Dude, you're kicking Michael Crighton's *ass!*

RooK | February 26, 2005 08:57 PM

It's possible that the funny was forged in the meanness, which in turn was made possible by our jealousy.

I'm using the adjective "our" speculatively here... even more so than the rest of the speculation.

John Scalzi | February 26, 2005 09:03 PM

No worries, Rook. "Mean" is used in an admiring way. I've been enjoying reading them immensely.

Mikhail Capone | February 26, 2005 09:13 PM

Is that screenshot from Amazon?

John Scalzi | February 26, 2005 09:20 PM

No, from the Science Fiction Book club. I was in error, also -- the book also made an Amazon SF best-seller list a while back, although those things are particularly evanescent, thanks to the vagaries of the Amazon Rankings.

Anonymous | February 27, 2005 01:48 AM

Mocking is difficult to do without some element of cruelty.

If it were purely "Parody a Scalzi" then it might not have been as mean down the line.

No, I wouldn't like to wager on that.

Kate Nepveu | February 27, 2005 08:17 AM

Goodness, Sean Stewart has done a tie-in novel?

I hope it paid him enough that he can write the next four novels as ones he wants to.

John Scalzi | February 27, 2005 09:17 AM

Well, or he wanted to write a Star Wars story without having it forever consigned to the murky depths of fanfic Web sites. I imagine it happens from time to time.

I'm not at all a fan of tie-in stuff because I think most tie-in novels manifestly suck. But if you can write one and not have it suck, more power to you. Indeed, I think it would be interesting to try one day to see if I could write a not-sucky tie-in novel; i.e., a tie-in novel I myself wouldn't be embarrassed to be caught reading.

Probably not in the Star Wars or Star Trek universes, however. Both of them need to lie fallow for a nice, long time, in my opinion.

seratonin | February 27, 2005 09:41 AM

Probably not in the Star Wars or Star Trek universes, however. Both of them need to lie fallow for a nice, long time, in my opinion.

Keep reaching for that rainbow. Also: I didn't get my entry in for the Scalzi contest, so I think I'll just finish it up some other time. The SRPG is coming...

Soni | February 27, 2005 01:31 PM

I can't tell if this "break in" post during your haitus to post best selling screen shots of OMW is just ironic as all get-out (see my parody in the comments to the post below) or intentionally humourously self-referential. Either way, thanks for the shot of pure validation for my observational skills, if nothing else. LOL!

Oh, and congrats on the listing. BTW, at what point do we mere mortals have to cast our glances to the ground and genuflect as a sign of respect when we pass you in the streets? Will there be a warning announcement?

Jeff Porten | February 27, 2005 02:31 PM

John, be careful. It looks like your "mock Scalzi" meme is starting to spread.

Regarding tie-in novels, I used to feel the same way about them (i.e., the whole point of TV/movie SF is that it's onscreen) until that dark day when an entire Star Trek novel appeared in my head, beginning to end. Had the damn thing outlined and storyboarded in 24 hours. Then I realized that selling said novel if your name isn't "Bill Shatner" and all your other work is nonfiction is, well, nearly impossible.

That's the thing about tie-ins. It's not only a comfortable place for your readers to go, it's also a simple place for a writer to go -- none of that messy, painful universe creation stuff. This is part of what blew me away about OMW; I kept thinking, "yeah, I could read a dozen novels set here."

John Scalzi | February 27, 2005 03:50 PM

Soni: It's a bit of both.

Jeff: Exactly -- a ready-made universe is like an already-furnished apartment: The decorating taste may not be your own, but at least you've got someplace to sit.

I don't know that I'm ready to do a dozen novels in the Old Man's Universe, but maybe three would be nice.

Jeff Porten | February 27, 2005 04:44 PM

Man, all you have to do is three. Then you kick it to your SFWA pals who are suffering under a bit of writer's block, slap on a "John Scalzi Presents", and watch the mad coin roll in.

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