Thursday, July 31, 2008

Mr. Rogers, People!

I don’t have many heroes. Mr. Rogers is one of them. So when I saw my buddy Whitney post this on PopCandy, my eyes started to bleed. I’m now stealing it as a call to action. If you want to know why you should care, watch Mr. Rogers testify before congress for public television. I dare you. Please do join the cause. He. Is. The. Best.



YouTube link of Mr. Rogers defending PBS




From Popcandy:



Pop reader Amy H. is worried about Mister Rogers.



Why? Because PBS "is trying to wipe him off the face of the earth by limiting his program to once a week," she says. "I mean, what is their reasoning? He’s outdated? He’s had the same puke-green curtains since 1970, so his being outdated is hardly a new claim. But his message is TIMELESS."



A campaign has been started at http://savemisterrogers.com to try to bring back Mister Rogers' Neighborhood into daily syndication. It was started by a young father who wants his kids to grow up with the man who taught him about human kindness and comfortable sweaters.



Amy adds that a Facebook group has started as well. Hey, if it can happen with Jericho, maybe it can happen with this Neighborhood, too.


Slutty Barbie

How did we miss this?


Thanks to MySpace Rick for sending it along.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Best Quote From San Diego

By the way, I totally forgot this until someone just sent it to me.


BY FAR, the best thing said at San Diego, which someone overheard, as a Justice League reader sees my father (who’s also sitting in the DC booth) and starts thanking my dad for: "fathering Brad so he could write all these really great comics."


Whoever you are who said that, I love you.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Books Of Lies

Here’s the first look — just sent to me from the warehouses -- of part of the print run of The Book of Lies.


It’s coming...



Book Of Lies In Warehouse


Book Of Lies In Warehouse, Closeup

Monday, July 28, 2008

Comic-Con Recap

As always San Diego is prom for me. Just without the corsage. I spent every free minute (I had a full 16 of them) trying to get Pokémon stuff for my kids. So thanks to the Pokémon woman who scored me the Pokéballs.


Highlight of the DC panels was looking up and seeing my Dad -- yes, Dad -- standing in line to ask a question. I lean over to Grant Morrison and Rucka and whisper, "this may be really bad..." And he proceeds to make me feel 7 years old by asking me: why aren't you telling people about the new novel?


Worst Dad moment. But best Dad moment. And easily best plug for The Book of Lies ever.


For costumes, loved Red Arrow (who told me he made a few modifications to the costume. Of course he did), Perez-era (Identity Crisis) Zatanna, the Oompa Lumpa, and the two guys as Tie-Fighters. But the clear winner was the dude on stilts who dressed as Plastic Man. My hero. (Though still never saw the guy dressed as Black Lightning. Anyone got a photo?)


But the true highlight of the show? Our geek panel with Paul Feig, Chip Kidd, David Goyer, Scott Brick, and the awe-somest Whitney Matheson (the only one I had never met face to face and who has just the best, kindest energy). I loved my panelists. I loved the topic of geek culture. I loved the intelligent questions. I loved everyone who came (even if it was just because they were waiting for the Pushing Daisies panel after us).


After, one woman came up and said it was best panel she saw at Comic-Con. And I know it wasn't because of me -- everyone else was amazing, I was a stuttering goofus -- but I really think that panel was special. They taped it. We need someone to find that tape. It's worth watching.


And then, also loved seeing all my pals. Thanks to so many of you from here who came and said hey. Loved that! And loved even little kid (especially that 8 year old) who came with a crayon homemade comic.


There's the future.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

The Day Sam Jackson Gave Brad An Eisner

There are few professional things that have really undone me:



  • the time I found out my first novel sold (while I was embarrassingly in a tanning bed)

  • talking to my Mom when we hit number 1
  • getting that D-minus from Entertainment Weekly for Tenth Justice (okay, that was just sad)


But this...

Samuel Jackson comes out to present the Eisner Award for best single issue story.  I smile to myself, telling my Dad we can't win, but excited that at least in announcing the nominees, Sam Jackson will say my name.

And then he reads the winner.

Add super slow motion effect here where I hear nothing by long inaudible syllables. My brain says, "Did he just say 'Justice League?'"  My father sits there next to me, just as confused. And finally Judd Winick hits me from behind as if to say, "Go schmuck!  He said YOU!"

I will find the video so you can see it. But I. Was. Undone. It was three months to the day that my Mom had passed, and I know that she must've cut lines and pulled strings to make it happen. The swell of emotion was all the cliche things bad Oscar speeches have. But I want to be clear about one thing. I meant when I said that that award was accepted for all the freaks and losers and outcasts and geeks and nerds and weirdos and outcasts -- for anyone who ever felt different or awkward or sat in a corner by themselves. That award was for us. It was for my Mom. And like I always say, it only happened because of you.

Yes. You.

Reading this.

It also happened because of our team. Because of genius Gene Ha. Because of Michael Turner bringing people in. And because of my brother Noah Kuttler, the Calculator, who storyboarded all my insanity so Gene could roll his eyes at me (and who most people don't know, does all the technical stuff when it comes to posting these blogs). Thanks, Noah!

But you have to see the video to see all the emotion I was armed with at that moment.

This was better than the D-minus.

Thanks to all who voted and rooted...


Rest of Comicon reports tomorrow...

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Replay!

For those who didn’t get to hear it, here’s my You Must Read This which I did for last week’s All Things Considered on NPR.


Best part is all the people who are emailing in saying how much they LOVE this book (even got a note from the author’s sister. Just wild). See below for more insanity. But read it. You will love it. And if you don’t, there is no heart in your chest.



Breaking Bookselling News from BookThink.com

The Brad Meltzer ‘You Must Read This’ Effect

You Must Read This


Brad Meltzer’s rave recommendation on NPR’s ‘You Must Read This’ of the novel Replay, by Ken Grimwood, took it to #5 on the Amazon bestseller list. Amazon is now out of stock...


It is, by the way a great book. When you discover it and read it, you wonder where it was all of your life, and it feels like your own discovery. Meltzer expresses that aspect of its appeal very well.


Karin Bergsagel, BookThink News Editor






Early Word, The Publisher Library Connection


‘Replay’ Redux


Brad Meltzer’s over-the-top rave about an out-of print 1987 cult title, Replay by Ken Grimwood, sent it to #5 on the Amazon bestseller list (it’s now down to a still astonishingly high #16).


Meltzer talked about Replay on NPR’s "All Things Considered," as part of their "You Must Read This" series, on Thursday (July 10). He loved the book so much that when he was in his early twenties, he tried to buy the film rights, despite having no money (unfortunately, they were already sold. No word on what’s happened; perhaps this attention will bring the project back to life).


Harper is reprinting the book.






Omnivoracious

A Bestseller All Over Again

by Tom on July 11, 2008


Wondering why a novel first published in 1986 jumped from nowhere into our top 10 today (it's currently at #4)? Three letters (which for our customers are often right behind those magic five letters--starting with "O'--for recommending books): N-P-R. Thriller and comics writer Brad Meltzer contributed a very convincing "You Must Read This" entry to All Things Considered yesterday about Ken Grimwood's Replay, a book with a Groundhog Day premise (written before the movie) about what you would learn if you had to live your life over (and over) again. I confess I had never heard of it, but, as Meltzer found out himself it has a strong following out there (and a couple hundred five-star reviews on our site):



So how much do I love this book? When I was 22 years old, I was working and playing puzzles at Games magazine. I had no money, a $359 apartment and $10,000 in college debt. And the first thing I did with all the cash I didn't have? I tracked down Ken Grimwood and tried to buy the movie rights for this book. I didn't just love Replay, I believed in it, I dreamed of it. I wanted this book - this book that only I had found.


And that's when his agent told me the film rights were snatched up years ago. Nice try, big shot.


Years later, when the Internet became the Internet, I found myself searching for Ken Grimwood again and learned that he died in 2003. I also discovered that I wasn't only believer; at the time, there were fan sites dedicated to Replay. Hundreds of people - like the fellow replayers we never realize are out there - were all dreaming my same dream.


Here's one of the fan sites, kengrimwoodlibrary.com , where I learned he wrote under other names as well, although the only book identified as his is Two Plus Two, under the name Alan Cochrane. --Tom


Sunday, July 20, 2008

San Diego Schedule!

Okay here it is, my schedule for San Diego Comic-Con. And check out the panel on Saturday with Freaks & Geeks creator Paul Feig, Chip Kidd, Whitney from Pop Candy, David Goyer, myself and moderated by audiobook master Scott Brick. (Tell me where there's gonna be more geek love? Tell me. We challenge any other panel to a nerd-off (like that dance in the "Bad" video (extra points if your brain went to the "Fat" video))).


As always, I'll sign anything: books, comics, posters, even bootleg Jack & Bobby dvds.


So please do come by and say hi. Really. That's the single best part of this weekend. You're the only reason I'm here. And when you do come, please remind me of your email or myspace name. I know those (sadly) far better than real names.


So for the schedule, see below...



FRIDAY



  • 11:30am - 1:00pm | Signing at the DC booth
  • 3:00 - 4:00pm | Signing at the Grand Central booth (##1116-1120) (I can't promise, but I bet there'll be free books there)
  • 4:00 - 5:00pm | Charity signing for The Hero Initiative; located at the Mile High Comics booth, #907
  • 6:00 - 7:00pm | PANEL – Final Crisis (Room 6A)

SATURDAY



  • 12:45 - 2:00pm | PANEL – DC: Expanding Your Universe
  • 2:00 - 3:00pm | PANEL – Comics: Across Every Medium - Room 6A

    Paul Feig (creator of Freaks & Geeks), David Goyer (Batman Begins), Chip Kidd (The Learners), Whitney Matheson (USA Today’s Pop Candy blog), and Brad Meltzer (The Book of Lies) are five superstars who make headlines in television, film, the graphic arts, journalism, and novels. But they all have comics in common. This isn’t just a trend. Join them for a discussion on the influence comics play in their work. It’ll be like a 21st century Breakfast Club—but with better references. Moderated by audiobook master Scott Brick (The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant).

  • 3:30 - 5:00pm | Signing at the DC booth

Friday, July 18, 2008

Dark Knight

Sitting in the theater right now, waiting for Dark Knight to begin, and spending the time naming all the New Universe titles (got 'em all, even Kickers, Inc.) and the 2099 titles (Doom was the best).


San Diego coming this week. Watchmen coming. Spitfire and the Troubleshooters on my brain. And I'm in a movie called The Dark Knight. Imagine someone came to you when you were 14 and told you all this would happen.


Head. Explodes.


I love being a geek!


I love comics!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The War

Three years ago, a soldier wrote to me saying how much he enjoyed The First Counsel, and it meant so much. I actually got 40,000 paperbacks -- from all different thriller authors -- donated through the USO. We never publicized it. Never told a single newspaper. But to be honest, I never knew what happened. Last night, I got the below, which just answered the question.


Whatever your feelings on the war, those troops are fighting for us. And I hope they know how much we appreciate it.



I am writing you from Balad, Iraq. I wanted to take a second to share a story about your books and there role in the war. I was first here in 2003. Several months in to the invasion things were still pretty primitive but mail was finally starting to catch up. One day a rather large box showed up from a womens club in Indiana. The box was addressed to Solider in the War. Inside the box was a bunch of used books. Everybody dove for what they like best. I ran across the book First Council. I read it as often as time and bad guys would allow. I was hooked. I loved the book. As I finished it I started reading the first chapter of The Millionaires that was included in at the end of First Council. So well written and just enough information to get you hooked. For days I was bothered by the fact that would no way be able to read it until I got home, several months from that point. Sitting in the Detroit Airport on my trip home from Iraq I walked in to a book store and found it. So overwhelmed with joy I had it read before I ever made it home. Fast forward through a few years of college and no enjoyment reading. The other day I am on a mission, some thing happened and we were not going to be able to make it back to our FOB (forward operating base) so we had to stop at one that was a little closer. On every post there is a MWR (Moral, Welfare and Recreation) center. MWR centers are almost always made up of the same affair of phone, internet linked computers, TVs and if you were lucky a run down pool table. We headed over to Camp Tajis MWR center and to my surprise they had a small library room in this MWR. It was probably not more than a few thousand used paperbacks lining the walls. The books were arranged in no order with the exception of one small book case where the books were organized by author. To my delight they had a section of the book shelf dedicated to just your books. Labeled with a hand made label, the shelf had almost all your books in multiple copies. It is weird how I have to come to a war zone to be able to enjoy your books. I read The Zero Game while we were there and am currently working on The Book of Fate.


Have no fear, your work dose not always go to a used book store to wait for the next reader but rather some of them take a different journey. Read amidst the chaos and the boredom but only once used to make sure my dinner that night was not as cold as it was served. Sorry but it was just a few chapters.


Keep up the good work and I patiently wait for your next book.


Monday, July 14, 2008

Siegel

Just now back from a quick trip to Cleveland for a return visit to the house where Jerry Siegel created Superman. So so much to report, all of it coming soon with The Book of Lies. And this time, we took the videocamera.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Jumbo's!

In The Tenth Justice, there's a mention of a restaurant called Jumbo's. It's a legendary 51-year-old soul food restaurant in Miami. And one of the first to integrate decades ago. It's also owned by my father-in-law, who fed me for the past 20 years there.



This is one of the things in my family that I'm most proud of. Watch the video (shown when Bobby won a James Beard Award last month) and you'll know why.





Tuesday, July 08, 2008

You’re Invited

Just a reminder, the book tour (just like a rock & roll tour, but without all the groupies and sex and...well, without pretty much anything) starts on September 2nd — so if you moved in the past two years, please make sure we have your updated mailing info so we’re not sending the invites to the wrong address.



Also, if you would like to get an actual invite in the actual mail, please do make sure I have your mailing address by clicking here. For those who are new, we never sell your name (I hate those people). And for those who have asked, yes, of course, feel free to add any relatives or friends or Moms who you’ve turned onto the books, comics, whatever. To this day, the number one email I get is: My Mom reads you too now...



I friggin’ love that email. So please do invite Mom as well. You can also send it to me directly through MySpace, facebook, or email at bradmeltzer44 at gmail.com.



And as always, can’t WAIT to see you all on tour. It’s been a crazy year here so looking forward to recharging with you all.



Love,



B

Monday, July 07, 2008

Turner's Poster

Of all the things written about Mike Turner's passing, this is the one that got to me. I don't know why. Maybe it's just that I always had my comic posters that moved with me...that became part of my home. Maybe it's just that I remember talking about this one with him.



Thanks to Laura for writing it.




From Myriad Issues



R.I.P. Michael Turner


via Myriad Issues by Laura Hudson on 7/2/08


It's late, I know. Unfortunately, I didn't know the man, but everything I heard about him made me wish I did. During the first year that I lived in the city, I starting working in a comic book store, and the first thing I bought there was a poster-- probably the only poster I've ever bought in my adult life.


Something about the image always compelled me. Maybe it was the symbolic value of having a glowing noose of truth thrust towards me. Noose notwithstanding, it seemed more like a challenge than a threat, with Diana walking out of the shadows and holding it like a lantern.


It's been over my bed -- or in some cases my "bed" -- for years now. It followed me through five moves in one eleven month period, and I don't know how many nights of being lame, lying in bed with my feet up against the wall, staring at it. During some of the most ridiculous times in my life, one of the only consistent things was that I fell asleep to this and I woke up to this.


It's one of the few superhero images that has actually made me feel the way I think superheroes are supposed to-- this idea of someone symbolizing something better, and the implicit challenge in that to try and be better ourselves. I think it's beautiful, and it's meant something to me for a while.


I'm sorry he's gone.



Thursday, July 03, 2008

San Diego

For those who have emailed, yep, I’ll be in San Diego for Comic-Con. And we got such an fun supercool panel. I heart everyone on it.