“Anything you can’t cope with is therefore your own problem” – Trillian, a.k.a. Tricia McMillan, in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
I’m back from tour. The Infinite Improbability Drive is off or at least idling. The list of things I can’t cope with is still worryingly long.
A word about tour. Tour was great. Actually it was amazing. There was a whole new vibe out there. When I went on tour for the paperback version of The Magicians, I saw maybe twice as many people as had come out for the hardcover version. Something had changed. But this time something had really changed. This time I got, like, 5-10 times as many people as for the paperback. Let me tell you, that means a lot to a writer.
(Also increasing: the amount of e-mail I get. I’m really, really sorry I’m so crap about answering it. The math of it is all wrong: the busier I get, the more e-mail I get, and the less time I have to answer it. It should work the other way.)
I was also surprised by how tough the tour was on me and my family — my being away for that long. Sophie has to pick up a lot of slack when I’m away, and it’s not like she doesn’t have her own professional gigs to deal with. It’s tough to strike a balance. I don’t how much it bothers Halcyon, who’s 1 and therefore still kind of one with the universe in that way that babies are. But Lily (7) basically welded herself to my leg the minute I got home and refused to let go. And I knew how she felt. Maybe I’ll take her with me next time.
I’m not going to do a big roundup of the reviews. Google will do a better job than I will, and it gets paid more than I do. Suffice to say that they’ve been good! And that it’s been interesting watching reviewers and their reviewing organs try to decide whether The Magician King is literature or fantasy or art or entertainment or trash or whatever. (Correct answer is: yes.) Though I will cop to being happy that The New Yorker, that pillar of literary culture, did a short but nice review (this link is pointless unless you subscribe to the magazine, in which case it’s pointless anyway. Sorry.)
And now onwards and upwards! Or at least energetically sideways! There are more projects in the works, which I’ll announce when I can. I have plans for a third and probably final Magicians book. I know how it starts and how it ends, and a certain amount about the middle bits. Damn those middle bits.