The worst book ever written

The worst book ever written is so very bad that there are warnings on Amazon to not even glance at the cover in case it infects you with its badness. Those warnings are true!

Holly Black LOVES this unspeakably bad book. So much so that she has many copies of it. So much so that she made us all read chapters out loud on the DragonTrain, which made us all laugh so hard we wept. I threw up I was laughing so hard.

The book is THAT bad.

Remember I was rambling recently about how you can’t include all details when you write? This book attempts to do that. It takes a kajillion chapters for the protag to cross a steet. All conversations are replicated in their full tedious detail—including repetitions and broken sentences and ums and ahs. And this tediously described every second of the protag’s day is interspersed with some of the most horrifically bad sex scenes ever written.

This book takes some of my favourite things in the world and renders them boring.

It is a jewel of bad writing. All you have to do is read it and then never ever write sentences remotely like it and you will have learned to write well. I would recommend it to all of you except that the writer’s rabid fans would hunt me down and kill me.

I can say this it is not a YA book. And I take back every word I have ever said about certain YA books. They are works of genius in comparison. I can safely say that no YA publisher would ever dream of publishing such dreck and if they did there’s no way it would make all the bestseller lists. Teenagers are WAY more discerning than that.

DragonCon Blues + Urban legends

The worst thing about DragonCon—other than the way too many people thing—is that it’s on the exact same weekend as the WNBA conference finals. I missed seeing Phoenix sweep San Antonio (woo hoo! Amy—sorry, Rebecca) and will miss all the Indiana-Detroit games (please Indiana win tonight!)

Seeing all those insanely brilliant costumes is some compensation I suppose. Riding on the train with Holly, Theo, Cassandra, Maureen and Scott ditto. Sitting around in a hotel room with them telling ghost stories also not too foul.

Which reminds me what are your favourite urban legends? Feel free to leave a link in the comments if you don’t feel like telling the whole thing. So far we’ve done the finger nails one, the hook, the headless roommate, the evil clown statue, and the finger licker.

Beluga whales

The train trip was fun. Biggest difference between travelling by air in the US of A and travelling by train is that the staff are happy and relaxed and like to talk to you. We heard all sorts of stories about train life (includuing gruesome stuff about what happens when someone throws themself under one).

Although the cabins are kind of on the squalorous side—especially compared to first class sleepers in Europe—it was fun hanging with Holly and Theo and Cassie and Maureen while kudzu covered forests zipped by. We dissected the YA publishing world, described the plots of our next five books, and planned collaborations that will never ever happen but would be amazing if they did. I could live on a train with those guys forever!

Except that would mean not staring at the beluga whales at the Georgia aquarium. We were the first people into that part of the aquarium this morning. It was just me and Scott standing in front of Nico as he pirouetted and somersaulted over and over again in front of us. Staring back at us as intently as we were staring at him. We could see the texture of his skin. Every scar, every pore. I have never been so close to such a large mammal in all my life. I could have stayed there for hours.

Tomorrow DragonCon begins. We’ve already seen our first klingons. I suspect there will be photos. Lots of them.

Train train train

In not that many hours we—Holly Black, Theo Black, Cassandra Clare, Maureen Johnson and Scott and me—get on the train and head to Atlanta, Georgia for DragonCon. Is it bad that I’m more excited about the train than the con? And I’m vastly excited about the con.

I plan to blog from Atlanta but much depends on the outrageous internet charges of our hotel. I will do what I can.

My schedule of events at DragonCon can be found over on Scott’s blog.

In other news I finished the first round of editorial rewrites on The UFB today. I am knackered but really looking forward to not thinking about that book for at least a week or so. Yay!