Hugh Howey to Go on Book Tour in Spring 2013
With all the excitement over Simon and Schuster bringing Wool to hardback and paperback in March 2013, we overlooked one amazing detail: Hugh Howey will be going on a book tour to promote Wool in Spring 2013.
Although he doesn’t know where exactly he’ll be going, he says that he’ll be headed out west and is hoping for either Portland or Seattle, and that Kansas City has been mentioned. He’s also hoping to make a stop at the bookstore in Charleston, SC, that he helped open, and that he would like to have the last stop in Miami.
Personally, we’re hoping that Simon and Schuster send him to Honolulu and Ontario, too!
You can watch Hugh’s video in our previous post. He starts talking about the book tour at minute 11:36.
Hugh Howey Talks Ebooks and US Publication with The West Australian
Wool is in bookstores this week in Australia and The West Australian interviewed Hugh Howey about his success with Wool, where he was a year ago, and why there’s still no US hardcover edition of Wool in stores in the States.
“It’s been fascinating for me,” Howey says — a remarkable understatement.
“It’s been weird to watch this take place. It’s not like having a dream that you want to come true, it’s like watching something you had on the side completely take off. This dream you have comes and takes you.”
When asked about a US edition of Wool, Howey confirmed what I’d suspected: that the digital rights to Wool is an issue.
“If you believe in your story, putting your work up on your website, making it available for everyone will lead to more success. It’s counter-intuitive and publishers won’t do it. But once you do that, the success of the physical book will come.”
Howey has recently signed with Random House for Australia and the UK but is still negotiating over the US rights. Talks are progressing but Howey said it was still hard for publishers to come to terms with all his publishing ideals.
“We have got closer and closer, and every time they come back they are being more adventurous with their conditions, but I don’t want to sign over my digital rights and I don’t want to commit to anything that will make my stories less available.”
It’s hard not to agree with him. It seems counter-intuitive to finally sign with a publisher only to have your books not as readily accessible to your potential readers. As an avid reader and Kindle owner, I find it completely ridiculous that some e-books are priced higher than their printed versions. Did it cost more for them to convert to PDF than it did to print the book?
What I find amazing about e-books is their non-existent size. I don’t have to buy more bookshelves or keep a box of crappy books to donate. I can carry around dozens of books in my purse and read whichever one I want while traveling or waiting in line. I can read them on my phone or during my lunch break at work. And if the book sucks, it simply goes into my archive.
But when a truly good book comes along, I want that thing in my hands. I will buy both the e-version and the hard copy. And while I’m sure not everyone feels the same way, I’m a customer that just bought the book twice. A book like Wool is one of those books that people will want to place on their bookshelves, which has now, for me, become the place for only the best stories I read.
To read the whole interview, go to The West Australian.
The Down Deep Interviews Hugh Howey
Warning: This interview contains WOOL spoilers!
Last week, we sent in some interview questions to Hugh Howey and even though he was recently traveling, he got back to us with impressive speed! Read below for more on Second Shift’s release and some cool details on his past work.
Thanks to Hugh for taking the time to answer our questions!
You’re doing NaNoWriMo now on top of your regular writing. Do you participate every year and how many times have you succeeded?
This is my fourth year in a row participating in NaNoWriMo. In 2009, I wrote HALF WAY HOME. I wrote THE HURRICANE in 2010. Last year, I wrote WOOLs 2, 3, and 4. So, I’ve been successful the past three years. This year has been the biggest challenge thus far. I’m completing one book (which will be released this week) while starting a new one. I’m just barely hanging in there!
You posted that you just finished Second Shift. When can people expect to be able to pre-order and what is the release date?
There won’t be any pre-order for SECOND SHIFT. It should go live on Amazon before Thanksgiving. I’m hoping to have it uploaded by the 17th.
You’ve said previously that you didn’t believe in Wool at first. Which of your current works is your personal favorite book or story?
I like them all for different reasons. My favorite might be SECOND SHIFT, which is a risky book but with themes that I really enjoyed exploring.
Your detail in Wool 2 about knitting seemed almost as if it was written from experience. I’m guessing you don’t knit yourself (or do you?), so how did you “research” into the mind of a knitter to write the start of Wool 2?
I can knit, but I can’t purl! My mother and sister started a yarn shop in Charleston, SC called “Knit.” I’ve turned out a couple of scarves, but nothing fancier. Maybe when I get done writing, I’ll learn a few patterns.
In Wool 2, you very subtly reference past sexual abuse with Mayor Jahns. Was there a reason you put this into the book?
It just felt like part of her character to me. She has this resiliency, this drive to be a good person in a bad place. There’s also the desire to show that life in the silo is a lot like life in our world, which means children play and chase one another, and bad things happen as well.
Did you look to anyone in particular for inspiration in creating Juliette’s personality?
I have a lot of strong women in my life. My wife, sister, and mother are all inspirations. But my characters come just as much from all the other stories I’ve absorbed through my life. There are certain tropes we absorb, recombine, and regurgitate. She’s probably just as much Han Solo and Wookie as she is Ripley from ALIEN.
When you self-published in e-book form, did you ever think you’d see Wool in print? What went through your mind the first time you held the UK hardback published by Random House?
Absolutely! I make physical versions of all my books. I paginate them with InDesign and use CreateSpace to print them. What I never expected was that I’d sell so many or hear that these books are being picked up by libraries and bookstores. And now with Random House in the UK, I’m able to hold a hardback version, which is very cool.
Is there any specific significance to having the silos located in Atlanta?
There is a little symbolism and a little logic. Atlanta is the home of the CDC, which adds an aura of mystery behind the cause of the world’s end. It’s also an urban setting that seems removed from the major US cities. I wanted it to feel a little random and unexpected. As in, you finally discover what city that is over the hill . . . and it’s Atlanta?
You mentioned in your recent Ustream that you are working on a TV show. Can you share anything with us about that?
I don’t think so. I’ll check! Basically, I’m helping set up the world for a new TV show. It’s been pretty exciting so far.
Where did the idea for Wool come from? Did it start with a character or line of dialogue, a specific image, or just a vague premise for the story?
It started with the idea of the wallscreen. I wanted to explore the fact that our view of the world is distorted, because we get it through a filter. We watch 24-hour news and think we’re getting a clear view of reality. WOOL asks whether the world outside might be better than that.
You talk about children’s books several times throughout Wool. Were any of the books you mentioned modeled after ones you enjoyed as a child?
Possibly GO, DOGS, GO! My favorite books as a child were HAROLD’S PURPLE CRAYON and everything by SEUSS. The idea was that children’s books might survive because nobody would expect to take them seriously, anyway. But there would be shades of the truth in their zany stories.
When you wrote the character Solo, you could easily have made him a serious threat to Juliette, instead of you made him in an endearing ally for her. What made you write him this way?
Oh, I thought Juliette had been through enough at that point! And I liked to think of her bringing help to another. It was also unexpected, which is always an aim of mine. I like for plot points to be both logical and unexpected, which is a challenge.
Back in March you posted some casting suggestions should Wool end up making it into production. Now, eight months later, do you still stand by that fantasy casting or have your picks changed at all?
These days, I lean more toward having unrecognizable actors play the various roles. I get pulled out of movies sometimes when the star is bigger than the role, or when I feel like I know that actor, and therefore they couldn’t possibly be living underground hundreds of years from now. There’s also something appealing about giving fresh actors a new start. That’s what readers did for me!
You picked Evangeline Lily as your Juliette. Are you by any chance a LOST fan and if so, what was your take on the ending?
I loved the first season of LOST. I saw a handful of episodes after that, but I never saw the ending. My favorite way to watch TV is to wait until it’s all out and then watch the entire seasons all at once. I just haven’t felt the urge to do that with LOST yet.
You have four more books planned for the Wool series. What made you want to stop there?
I see the story playing out in three acts. Act I is WOOL. Act II will be SHIFT. The final act will be called DUST (I think). There are so many other stories I want to write that I don’t want to get stuck just cranking out an endless stream. That’s one of the reasons I took a step back with SHIFT and did a prequel. WOOL has such a nice ending. I want it to stand on its own.
Do you have plans to write from the Molly Fyde universe again?
Yes! I was about 95% done with the fifth Molly book when WOOL took off, and I started writing the rest of the Omnibus. I took a break this year to write I, ZOMBIE and a short story, but as soon as I wrap up the WOOL series, I’m going to finish that Molly book. It’s a great story. I can’t wait to get back to it.
Hugh has also generously offered us the chance to give away one of his UK hardbacks, so keep watch for that this week!
Hugh Howey Makes Wool 1 “Free Forever”
In celebration of Wool 1′s one taking off one year ago this month, author Hugh Howey has announced that the first short story, the one that started it all, is now free on the Amazon Kindle and iTunes and will remain free forever.
It’s been funny being a fan, since I’m just one out of many, yet reading comments from others here and elsewhere on the Internet, I can tell that I feel the same kind of affection toward the book and its author as many others. We all want him to do well so badly and it’s been truly amazing watching him achieve new heights over the last six months since I first discovered Wool on Amazon.
Now that Wool 1 is free online, we can all push it on friends and family even harder! So get cracking and apply pressure to everyone you know and get them to read Wool.
CNN Talks Self-Publishing with Hugh Howey
Hugh Howey was in Los Angeles this week to attend Amazon’s big press event, which hosted the unveiling of the Kindle Fire HD on Thursday. With part of the day’s highlights focusing on self-publishing and Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing, it’s natural that Howey’s smashing success Wool would be a hot topic.
CNN talked to Howey about the program and he revealed just how beneficial publishing your own work through Amazon can be.
“Most of my months are six-figure months,” said Hugh Howey, a 37-year-old Florida author whose ”Wool” series of digital books was highlighted by Amazon. “It’s more than I ever hoped to make in a year.”
For Howey, author of the “Wool” series, the direct-publishing platform has opened up a life he never imagined was possible — one where he is paid to write full-time.
Without the Amazon platform, the books might not have been published at all. Howey never promoted the first edition of “Wool,” a dystopian series about a group of underground people who get all of their information about the outside world through a single, digital screen. He didn’t think it would sell.
Then in October 2011, he said, his sales jumped from from dozens to thousands.
Those kinds of numbers will undoubtedly inspire a lot of frustrated authors to try the program, which is probably exactly what Amazon is hoping for. I know it’s sure perked my interest in self-publishing a cookbook.
It’s nice to see the spotlight on such a talented writer and incredibly satisfying to hear some numbers behind his much-deserved success. With the movie deal being signed earlier this week, here’s to hoping all this publicity puts increased pressure on Fox to fast track it to the big screen!
Read the full article at CNN.
Hugh Howey in Entertainment Weekly’s Summer Must List Issue
This week’s June 1/8 Entertainment Weekly is a double issue highlighting this summer’s best movies, tv, music, and books and on page 122, there’s a half page spread on Hugh Howey!
In it, Hugh Howey jokes about being compared to Fifty Shades of Grey, “I’m just waiting for the really bad reviews to come in from disappointed soccer moms who pick up Wool and find absolutely nothing titillating about it.”
The comparison between the two books continues to drive me insane. It’s like when you recommend A Game of Thrones to your friend and she asks if it’s as good as Twilight; you just want to claw your eyes out and fall to the floor screaming at such a question.
The cover features The Amazing Spider-Man and hit stands May 25, 2012. The issue will sell until May 31, 2012 or June 1, 2012, depending on when your local magazine stand or bookshop switches out the issues.