Sunday, November 29, 2009

Brandon Sanderson and Paul Genesse


I had dinner with my friends Brandon Sanderson and Larry Correia after Brandon's signing at the West Jordan Barnes and Noble. I'm so proud of Brandon for his job on the new Wheel of Time book--A Gathering Storm, which was just a #1 New York Times bestseller. And Larry has so many cool things going right now with his extremely popular Monster Hunter International book. Hopefully, Larry's movie deal will go through. It would translate so well to the big screen.

Getting to hang with Larry and Brandon is a treat for me because they’ve both just finished big mega book tours—like I just did. We’re all so mentally fried from doing all the traveling, promoting, and such. The three of us are looking forward to getting back to writing again.

Brandon has two more Wheel of Time books coming out, then he’s got his Way of Kings series, which will be huge! Maybe two million words!

Larry has Monster Hunter Alpha coming soon, and several other projects going. He’s sold four novels to Baen Books now, and I couldn’t be happier for him. When I read Monster Hunter International, I knew he had a long career ahead of him.

As far as my own writing, I don’t have a release date for book three yet. I’ll let you know when I do. I’ve also been asked to write two more short stories. One for DAW books, which will appear in Steampunked, an anthology coming out in a year or so. I don’t know the release date yet. The other will be for Stygian Press, and will be an Abyss Walker story in an Abyss Walker anthology. Good times. There is another short story project, the Crimson Pact, but I’ll post more on that later.

The good news for me is that I actually got back to writing last night. Things were flowing and I’m so glad to be working on book three again. I wrote a few new scenes for The Secret Empire and hope to finish the rewrite of the old manuscript in the next three months.

I also need to work on Medusa’s Daughter, which is so close to being done. I just have to write the epilogue and go over the book again. Then it goes to my alpha readers, Patrick, Brad, and Barb. I just need to find the love for it again . . .

Best wishes,

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Kathy Griffin Live in Salt Lake City


Got funny?

I just returned from seeing my favorite comedienne, Kathy Griffin, after her first stand-up gig ever in Salt Lake City. My wife, Tam also says Kathy is her favorite and we really enjoy her show, My Life on the D-List on the Bravo channel. Kathy killed the huge crowd at Abravanel Hall, keeping us laughing the whole night. She received a huge welcome and had us from the very moment she took to the stage. I’m so glad she didn’t hold back and belted out her particular brand of humor, colorful language and all, with lots of energy and panache. She deserves everything that she’s accomplished and she’s one of my heroes.

Her newest comedy CD, Suckin It For the Holidays has some of the same material on it that she used during the show, but there was a lot of new stuff. Kathy is so much fun to see live and her CD is so hilarious. I wish I could get a live CD from tonight’s show. She performed for an hour and a half and we loved every minute of it.

Check out this link to see a video of her live:

Happy holidays,

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters

Interview and Article in Survival By Storytelling Magazine


The first issue of Survival by Storytelling Magazine just came out and features an article about writing and an interview of me. The magazine is dedicated to publishing fiction, non-fiction, and poetry by young authors—all under 25 years old. I don’t have a story in it, as I’m 36, but the editor asked me for an article on writing and did a cool interview. My article is called SIX IDEAS ON CREATING MEMORABLE CHARACTERS, and has lots of fun ways to get you started on character creation.

The 12 stories are a lot of fun and show that good stories can be written by people of any age.

You can get a preview and check it out at where you can download it for only $5 or get a print copy for $9.

For you young writers out there, please check out:

Happy Writing!

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters

Steampunk Short Story


Steampunk Short Story

I was fortunate enough to be asked to write a story for Jean Rabe’s next DAW anthology, Steampunked. I’ve been working on a story idea and have come up with a setting that I think has not been done before in this genre. I don’t want to say what it is now. However, I was able to attend a panel on Steampunk at the World Fantasy convention a few weeks ago and it got my mind going. I’m also reading a great anthology edited by Jeff and Ann Vandermeer called Steampunk right now. Pick it up if you get a chance. I’ve loved almost every story so far and think it’s totally awesome.

What is steampunk? Check out this link:

Best wishes,

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters

Stygian Publications, short story contest

Stygian Publications—short story contest—see below

It’s official. I’m going to be writing a story for the upcoming Abyss Walker anthology. The creator, Shane Moore asked me to write a story and I’m very happy about saying “yes.” I met Shane at Gen Con 2009 and we’ve become friends. He’s my kind of guy and goes full-throttle to reach his goals. His Abyss Walker series of novels and graphic novels, has been very successful and I can see why.

If you want a chance to be in the anthology as well, check out the guidelines on the Stygian blog.

This is a great opportunity for fans of the series and anyone, to get published in a cool book.

Happy Writing,

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters

The Winds of Khalakovo


The above image has the feel of the unpublished novel I just read. The painting is by Ruan Jia, an amazing Chinese artist. I am a huge fan of his and please visit his website at:

The Winds of Khalakovo by Brad Beaulieu

I just finished reading, The Winds of Khalakovo, an unpublished novel by my friend and author, Brad Beaulieu—a Writers of the Future winner. It’s like A Song of Ice and Fire meets Earthsea. Winds was so awesome and I'm very fortunate to be one of the first people in the whole world to have gotten to read it and provide feedback to the author. I can't wait for Brad to sell this book. It's such an amazing work of epic fantasy set in a very unique world. Think of a fantasy Russia during the time of the czars with flying sailing ships that ply the freezing winds of an unforgiving world. The Winds of Khalakovo was a page-turner and Brad is such a great writer. The novel was 175,000 words, but it read really fast. As far as epic fantasy, this is the kind of book I look for—strong characters in lots of danger. There is a cool, satisfying ending, though we need more. Much more.

I’ve never read a fantasy with a Russian slant to it before, and the magic system of the book was so fascinating as well. I don’t want to give anything away, so I should stop writing, but suffice it to say that Brad’s book is tense and exciting. He keeps you guessing and wondering up to the very end. I know he and I are both working on perfecting some of the same things in our writing, so his style just gets me. I wish I was as good a writer as he is, and I’m thankful that he helps me edit my own projects.

Here’s a description of the novel that I found on Brad’s blog:

“The Winds of Khalakovo is an epic Russian fantasy, a tapestry that portrays the story of a once-unified nation marching steadily toward the brink of civil war, of a blight that is eroding the traditional way of life on the archipelagos, of a culture that against their most ardent beliefs is driven to acts of extreme violence. It is a story of two unlikely allies, a Prince and a young, autistic savant, who together set the wheels of the story in motion.”

What Brad does not mention is that besides the Prince, the other main characters are two incredibly strong women. Atiana and Rehada are totally different, but are both fascinating.

Let’s all hope that a major publisher snags this book and puts it out soon. I can’t wait to see the cover art for it. I think Donato Giancola or Brom would be perfect to paint the cover.

Best wishes,

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters

Saturday, November 14, 2009

The End of The Dragon Hunters Book Tour


Nanci Ross, Carrie Ross of Dyslexia Tutoring of Utah, and author Paul Genesse

The End.

Well, it was the end. The end of The Dragon Hunters book tour. My last event of my tour was at the South Towne Barnes and Noble in Sandy, Utah from 3-6 PM.

I was worried that no one would show up. It was snowing, and it was very cold outside. Would anyone come out on a day with such bad weather? I was pretty worried as Tam and I braved the ice and falling snow on the drive over to the bookstore.

Apparently, I was worried for nothing. It was my biggest and best book signing ever at a Barnes and Noble. We sold a ton of books, selling out of The Golden Cord and 15 copies of Terribly Twisted Tales featuring my story Revenge of the Little Match Girl. We had to tap into my personal stock of Golden Cords. They still have a few signed copies of The Dragon Hunters left and they said they were going to order more Golden Cords.

A bunch of the kids from the schools I visited came by, and people who were there to support Dyslexia Tutoring of Utah, a non-profit tutoring group dedicated to helping kids learn to read. I was a guest at their book fair, which lasted for 12 hours all day Saturday. I’m a spokesperson for them now and love being affiliated with them. Nanci and Carrie Ross (Nanci is the executive director) are great people doing important work for the kids. Part of the proceeds from the signing and all the book sales that day—if you mentioned them at the register—went to their group.

Having my last event of the tour be so successful was fantastic. I got to see several old friends, and made lots of new ones.

One kid got a free book. His name was Roberto. We met at his school the day before, and he wanted to go to my signing so badly, but didn't know where it was. Despite the fact that it was snowing, Roberto and his mom looked for me at two other bookstores--during a snowstorm--before they found me at the South Towne Barnes and Noble. His mom told me that Roberto didn't like reading, but after hearing me speak, he is totally into it now. I helped change his life and that makes the struggles of being a writer and doing book tours all worthwhile.

The tour had its ups and downs, but I’m glad I did it. Now, it’s time to get back to writing.

Here’s a link to the few pictures taken at the event.

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters

Friday, November 13, 2009

Pictures from The Dragon Hunters Book Tour

Hello Friends,

I’m finally back from my month long book tour. My blog has the details, and below are public links to the photos on Facebook. The tour went really well. Thanks so much for all of your support.

I have one more event, Saturday November 14 at the South Towne Mall Barnes and Noble in Sandy, Utah from 3-6 PM. A non-profit group, Dyslexia Tutoring of Utah is having me as their guest author for their book fair. A portion of the proceeds from any books—by me or anyone else—purchased in the store tomorrow go to the Dyslexia Tutoring group.

Free book raffle at 3:30 when you can win a copy of The Golden Cord, The Dragon Hunters, or one of my pirate stories—plus several other cool prizes.

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters

Links to photos from the tour:

Sandy Schools:




San Francisco

World Fantasy in San Jose 2009:

The Wilson Family in Whittier, California

Santa Maria


Las Vegas

Boise/Nampa Idaho Visit

Indianapolis, Gen Con 2009

ConDuit Sci-Fi Fantasy convention in Salt Lake City, 2009

The Dragon Hunters Book Release Party
May 22, 2009,

Paul Genesse, Author and Editor

Author of The Dragon Hunters
Book Two of the Iron Dragon Series
(Five Star Books, May 2009)


Join me on Facebook,
Editor of the Writer's Symposium Ezine

Three Elementary Schools in Utah


Pictured above are some kids from Bella Vista Elementary School, in Cottonwood Heights. They were so awesome and this was my last school visit on the Dragon Hunters Book Tour. I'm so thrilled that my last visit went so well. The kids and I had a wonderful time, and they created a fabulous story about a little girl named Annabelle. I had 4th, 5th, and some 6th graders in the workshop, sixty total. Before that I spoke to about 180 kids and the speech went really well. Mary Lou Damjanovich set it all up, and the school is blessed to have her.

The day before I visited two schools in Sandy, Utah: Edgemont Elementary and Bell View Elementary. Both visits went great and I am so happy to have met so many cool kids. We created some amazing stories together and I'm always astounded by what the kids think of when we're creating the stories.

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Mayhem in Sparks (it's the city beside Reno)


Raarrrr! Red Robin brings out the animal in me, and my Uncle Rene Genesse.

Reno and Sparks, Nevada, November 5-8, 2009

It’s true. Some people were actually born in the Biggest Little City in the World—Reno, Nevada. I was born there, at St. Mary’s Hospital on May 29, 1973 at 7:38 AM. The weird thing is that I'm totally not a morning person.

Seriously, at the end of my book tour, I got to go to the place where I lived for five years, and then visited every holiday and summer for most of my youth.

Seeing my cousins, and old friends, was such a cool experience. I have the pictures to prove it (link below). When I was in Reno/Sparks, I also visited two schools, Marvin Moss Elementary, which went really well, and Swope Middle School—a truly amazing experience for me. At Marvin Moss, the writing workshop was really good, and the kids were so smart. They came up with a brilliant story about a blind girl with seeing-eye dog with supernatural powers. The story had it all. The kids get an A+.

My next stop was Swope Middle School. Several war veterans had just spoken about their experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan to the whole school (right before I came). For the first time ever at a school visit, I told the students a true story about how a Dragonlance book saved a soldier’s life. Tracy Hickman (the co-author of the book) told the story at a conference I attended, and I won’t repeat it here; but suffice it to say, books have a power that can truly save lives, which is why Tracy Hickman and Margaret Weiss were given the soldier’s medal, earned by him for bravery in combat. My visit to Swope was an amazing cap to my book tour. I gave one of the best speeches of the tour and I’m so happy I pulled it all together for the students.

The next day I had lunch with family and friends, then a book signing at the Reno Barnes and Noble, where I was the guest of Swope Middle School’s book fair. It went so well. Lots of kids came from Swope and Marvin Moss. I signed the last of my posters and had a big line. It was so great, and the dinner with family afterward was excellent. There was mayhem and fun at the dinner, and I got to hang with a cousin I hadn’t seen in many years. It was a wonderful night.

The very best thing about writing books, and going on tour has been seeing friends, family, and meeting the fans. Those connections matter a lot to me, and I met some amazing people. What I really hope is that I inspired the people I met along the way, because they inspired me.

Here’s the link to the pics:

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters

Attack of the Wild Turkeys


Sacramento, California, November 4-5, 2009

We were attacked by wild turkeys on our way to Sutterville Elementary School. Who knew that this could even happen in a subdivision of Sacramento?! We were driving from my cousin Colleen’s house to the school and a whole flock of them entered the road, and gobbled a dire warning. Had they come for revenge? It’s no secret what my favorite Thanksgiving food item is. The attack was brief and Tammy scared them off with our camera. Check out the pictures for proof on the Facebook public link, at the end of this post.

The visit at Sutterville was one of my best of the tour. I loved my speech to the kids, and the writing workshop was fantastic. We came up with an awesome story about a purple and black haired goth girl who is murdered by her father. It was very well done and I’m so thankful for the kids’ incredible ideas. The signing afterward was awesome, and a visit like this one made me feel so good about the tour.

The day before was also quite special, as I visited my cousin Emily at her school, California Middle School. I was very happy with my speech and the writing workshop was really fun. The kids came up with a story about a ginger haired girl, who liked to kill her cougar mom’s boyfriends. The story was the most twisted of the entire book tour and the students did a great job with it. Bravo to them!

Getting to visit my cousin Emily, and her friend, Jenna at the school and later at dinner, was a real highlight. We all had dinner over at cousin Joanna’s later, and it was wonderful to get to hang with my peeps. Check out the photos on Facebook:

Best wishes,

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters

Deer Valley High School, Antioch, CA


Shantelle, "Telly" strikes a pose. Okay, she's my cousin, but you can't fake this kind of coolness!

Antioch, California November 3, 2009

My mother fit into a shoebox after she was born. The delivery occurred in a little house in Antioch, California, and her dad (my grandfather) delivered her. Somehow, she survived and I’ve been back with mom to visit her hometown several times. I’ve got a bunch of family there and love to visit.

I visited Aunt Darlene, then Deer Valley High School, then spoke in the Deer Vally High library. The speech went very well and the librarians were awesome. My biggest fan, Katrina Miller, was there. She’s read my books seven times each. She understands them like no one else does, and I’m grateful to have such cool fans. The school newspaper interviewed me as well. I also read a few pages from the beginning of book three (The Secret Empire), just for Katrina. She loved it. But I caused her to miss her bus. No worries. I gave her a ride home. Only the best for my biggest fan.

After the speech at the school library, I went over to Aunt Betty’s and had such scrumptious food (Grandma Ridolfi’s ravioli recipe is TOP SECRET by the way). Tam got to meet the family, and we had a wonderful time. Having my mom there was so special, and seeing my cousins was the best, especially Lacey Rose and Shantelle, “Telly.” Check out the pictures on the Facebook public link.

There’s no place like home, or Aunt Betty’s cooking.

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters

San Francisco & Miller Creek Middle School

San Francisco and San Rafael, November 1-2, 2009

There we were, surrounded by flesh-eating plants and poisonous flowers, when Tam reminded me we were not lost in the jungles of Venezuela. We were in the Conservatory of Flowers in Golden Gate Park. I met my wife, Tam, her sister Deanie, and our friends Lily, Cary, Glenn, and Jackie on Sunday morning at Lily and Cary’s apartment, which is right off the park. Deanie and Tammy (and our friends) had been touring San Francisco for the past couple of days, and finally I met up with them.

I hadn’t seen Tam in two weeks, so it was great seeing her again. Then we had an adventure in Golden Gate Park and fun was had by all. Check out the photos on Facebook with this link.

The next day I visited Miller Creek Middle School in San Rafael, just north of San Francisco. Tammy, my friends (Glenn, Jackie, and Lorrie), were able to come along and I’m glad they were there. The speech went fairly well, not my favorite, then I did two writing workshops. They went all right, but I must have been off my game, as I had a little trouble getting the kids to focus on creating the story with me. The signing went well, and lunch afterward was great. I have such awesome friends who support me no matter what.

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

World Fantasy 2009, San Jose

San Jose—World Fantasy

The World Fantasy convention was held in San Jose, California this year from October 29 to November 1. Tons of writers and some fans attended (1200 total, which is the maximum allowed at this professional convention). I was able to room with my writing buddies, Brad Beaulieu and Patrick Tracy. We had a good time and I was able to meet with many writers, publishers, agents, and a few editors. What happened at the convention? It’s top secret for now, but there were good things and bad things. Some doors closed, others opened. I don’t know what will happen next, but I got some excellent career advice from the president of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Russel Davis. He’s so cool and he loved my first book, The Golden Cord.

I attended some great panels, including one on steampunk. Since I was recently asked to write a steampunk short story for another DAW anthology, edited by Jean Rabe, and I’m doing all the research I can. It’s going to be a fun story and I’ve got an idea for the setting, and main character, but not the story. That will come soon. I’ve got until February 1, 2010 before I have to turn it in.

My book signing at the mass author signing was excellent, and meeting with my writing teachers, Kij Johnson, Mike Stackpole, and my editor, John Helfers was very cool. I met so many new friends and I’m looking forward to seeing them all again. Overall, the convention was a big success, with a few setbacks. Not everything is magical for me, though. I get kicked in the gut once in a while, and have to fight through the pain. The publishing industry is hurting, hence the writers are hurting. It’s so hard to be in this field, and even if you do almost everything right, you can still get the crap kicked out of you from time to time. The good thing for me is that I have such awesome friends to prop me up when I nearly fall down. Brad, Pat, Barbara Webb, and my new friends kept me going no matter what. Here's the public link to the Facebook pictures:

Best wishes,

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters

Santa Maria, California

Santa Maria: Alice Shaw and Dunlap, October 27-28

When I was in sixth grade my best friend and I made an emerald castle in the desert. Okay, she provided the emeralds. I mostly helped by using old junk, like a discarded shower stall and tin sheeting. Our emerald castle was made out of junk, but in our imaginations, it was a magnificent fortress. Everything was perfect until the older kids came and kicked us out. Rotten kids! Christy and I were like the two kids in the book and movie, Bridge to Terabithia. We would explore the desert, hike around, and hang out with our other friend, Amanda. Who knows what would have happened if Christy had stayed in Beatty? I think we would have been great friends for years and years. Then tragedy struck. Not as bad as in Bridge to Terabithia, though. She moved away toward the end of sixth grade and I was heartbroken. Then we lost touch, seeing each other a couple of times after that. Then it was seventeen or so years later when we found each other on Facebook. She invited me to visit Santa Maria, a city near San Luis Obispo in California. I wanted to meet her, her husband Erik, and their three kids. We had a great visit and I loved going to the schools she set me up with.

Dunlap Elementary School, where Christy’s son Jack went, was one of my best school visits ever—in the top two for sure. The speech to a large group was one of my best performances of all time. Sometimes you just rock the house. I don’t always. But I connected with the kids and we had so much fun. Then the two writing workshops afterward went extremely well. The students came up with fabulous ideas and the stories we created were top-notch. Then I signed posters for the kids in some classrooms and hung out more. It was a wonderful visit from beginning to end. The presence of my friend, Christy, made it all the better. Did I mention she’s also the best cook in the world? Her husband Erik is good too. He made baby back ribs on his grill that were awesome. Christy’s fish tacos were incredible and I’m amazed Erik is in such good shape. If I were him, I’d have a big gut!!

That night I visited Alice Shaw Elementary from 7-9 PM. The principal, Janet Bertoldi, hosted an event for families from both Dunlap and Alice Shaw. It was very well attended and the event was a big hit. Speaking about writing and teaching the kids a writing workshop was fabulous. We came up with such a cool story. The signing afterward was incredibly successful.

Leaving Santa Maria was bittersweet. I’ll always be friends with Christy and really enjoyed meeting her family—especially her son, Jack. Here’s the public link to the Facebook pictures.

Happy reading!

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters

What makes something perfect?

The Wilson’s in Whittier, plus Leffingwell Elementary School, October 26, 2009

While I was in Los Angeles on my book tour, I visited the city of Whittier, where my friends Jason and Natalie Wilson live with their kids, Ariel and Chara. I love them all so much, and am so happy to be “Uncle Paul” to Ariel and Chara. Jason is now Dr. Wilson, and works as a professor at Biola University after attaining his PhD in statistics. He’s such a good man and his kids are amazing. I wish I lived closer so I could see them more. The visit was too fast. I’ve got pictures on Facebook at this link:

I visited Leffingwell Elementary School in Whittier and had a good time speaking to the kids. The people at the school were very hospitable and I would definitely go back. Then I went to Whittier High School in Cerritos, which is one of the top-rated, if not the highest rated school, in all of California. I spoke to some students in the career center during lunch, and then did a writing workshop for about 120 students. It all went very well. It was my second time visiting them and I would absolutely go back. It was one of my better speeches, and the high school kids seemed to be quite into it. I love it when the speech comes off like that.

Best wishes,

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Neil Gaiman hitched a ride with me

October 25-26, 2009

Neil Gaiman hitched a ride with me from Flagstaff to Los Angeles. It was a good trip. One I won’t forget. It’ll be forever remembered as the trip that I listened to American Gods (written by Neil Gaiman), on audio CD. To be clear, Neil wasn’t physically with me in the car. His words, however, were, and I really enjoyed the novel. The man reading the book was amazing.


The novel won the World Fantasy Award for best novel a few years ago, and I see why. I finally got the book and I’m glad that I did. The story is awesome and the scope of the novel was extremely impressive. Who knew that the ancient gods could fall so low? I don’t want to get into the nuts and bolts of the book, but let’s just say that the ancient gods have come to America with their worshippers. Now they exist as shadows of their former selves, barely gods anymore as they are worshipped very little, and seem very, very human. They drink, eat, love, and mostly steal. It was a fascinating book that follows a character named Shadow. Who is he? You’ll find out very slowly as you read the book—or listen to it. The novel is huge, but worth it in the end. It did have a slow pace most of the time, but I found it interesting throughout, even when the plot moved very little. I got a little sick of hearing about what they were eating all the time, but the detail was excellent. Gaiman’s ability to describe a scene is top-notch.

The social commentary in the book was brilliant and it holds up the mirror to America and shows us that worshipping certain technologies, (or personalities), has some serious consequences for all involved.

American Gods is a literary fantasy in my opinion, and I would recommend it to mature readers who want to see what all the fuss is about with Neil Gaiman. I knew he was cool, as I met him once, at World Fantasy in 2002 in Minneapolis. He’s an interesting and very charismatic man, and if you get a chance to hear him on a panel at a convention—don’t miss it.

Happy reading!

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters
Book One of the Iron Dragon Series