Ms. Carolyn Fusinato
2605 Whitis Avenue
Austin TX 78705-9000 Dear Carolyn,
I was beginning to think you had joined the Navy or gotten married or something. It's good to hear from you again. I suppose I'll just jump right in.
1. I have _never_ signed books in San Diego. San Francisco yes. Los Angeles, yes. San Diego, no. At one time, I did hope for eight; now I don't think so. I certainly hope (Please, God!) it doesn't go to ten books, but I have stopped saying anything except that I will write until I reach the las scene of the last book, which scene has been in my head from the beginning. I will not write one word more in this world than I need to reach that scene.
2. Yes, I was on AOL. Sorry about not answering you sooner, but it takes a little time for Tor to forward letters, and by the time I got yours, I was preparing to go on tour, where I did indeed appear etc.
3. Who said I didn't like the Midwest? On tour I go where the publisher is willing to send me. This has in large part to do with which bookstores convince Tor that I should go to a certain city. For instance, I was in Cincinnati and Lexington, KY because Joseph-Beth Bookseller sent somebody to New York to make a presentation and convinced them that there would be enough people at the signings to make it worth the publisher's effort; the two stores were jammed. On this tour I appeared in Atlanta, New York, Boston (and suburbs), Chicago, Naperville IL, Denver, Boulder, Colorado Springs, Seattle (and suburbs), San Francisco, Halfmoon Bay CA, Concord CA, Sacramento, Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Cincinnati, Lexington KY, Washington DC, Springfield VA, and Toronto. I think I left out one or two; I To [the TO is marked out with blue ink] don't have my itinerary with me. One problem is that more stores want me to appear than I have time to appear at. I was told that if all the requests had been honored this time, I woud have been on tour for four and a half months; maybe this was hyperbole, but I don't have time to spend even half that away from the writing.
4. I heard about the hoax. Thanks for the printout of the posting. I suppose whoever posted it throught this book -- THE WESTING GAME -- had some influence on some part of my writing. I'll have to try finding it; it would help, of course, if I knew whether it was fiction or non-fiction, and who the author is. Or maybe it's part of the hoax, too. The Eddings War? the Grin Thingy War? The Lanfear Trials? Elucidate further, my dear. Sorry to hear of so many falling by the wayside. A note: Taim, whether you mispronounce it as TAME or pronounce it correctly as tah-EEM, doesn't rhyme with the others. Isn't anyone required to write poetry in school anymore? Of course, that dates me to the Dark Ages by most peoples' view, but I can still knock off a fairly good sonnet, Elizabethan or later.
5. Re the Forsaken working together. Do some reading on Hitler's henchmen. Also Stalin's, and Mao's. There are plenty of other examples, but these are probably the easiest to find. In each case you find that the fellows were out for what they could get and just as likely to try pulling down one of their so-called compatriots, or at least undercut him, as to help if that was the route to greater power. Check out Goebbels-Goring-Himmler and Beria-Molotov-Kruschev, for examples, these are much easier to document than that Chinese tangle. The question of what is evil is always difficult on the one hand and easy on the other. Is the sexual abuse of a child evil? I think that it is; I can see no excuse; I would offer no mercy. An octogenarian friend and I used to discuss the nature of evil, until he died. He would protest when I brought up something such as the Holocaust, say (though he was Jewish), because he wanted to keep it all on a level of purely Platonic ideals. It was always an effort for me to do that. To me, evil is real and palpable. The problem is, and always has been defining it. Harming someone without cause? Hitler had cause, a reason, [ a carat and line leading to "however moral it was" in paranthesis in blue ink] for murdering millions of people; so did Stalin and Mao. At the other end, how much harm? If you tell a lie that causes two people to argue, you have done harm, but ws the act evil, or merely wrong? There are infinate shadings of degree, intent and effect to take into account.
6. I'll give 10,000 Maniacs a try, if I can find a CD or tape in my copious free time, and also Ms. Merchant solo. As for Scott, I'll bet he doesn't!
7. There are answers/replies or partial answers/replies to most of your questions in what is already published, through LORD OF CHAOS. For the rest.... You know the answer. All together, now...
Yes, my wife was the one who had heart surgery. Not a heart attack, though. She is perfectly recovered.
With best wishes,