Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Living or Dead…Get in Print!

Great news drunk writer readers! Kim Howe has made it to the final four in the American Title III Contest. This is especially exciting for us, because our critique partner Michèle Ann Young made it to the final four last year. We all have our fingers crossed for Kim. And we're lucky enough to have her back as a guest blogger today.

Take it away, Kim.

Have you been tuckerized? If not, it’s time you found a way to make it happen.
A few of you may be scratching your heads, thinking that I have imbibed too much alcohol with my friends, the Drunk Writers. But, alas, this is not the case…really!


Let me tell you my story. My husband is a big fan of speculative fiction. When the World SF convention was in Toronto, he came home with a big smile on his face, telling me he bought me a present—then the kicker—I don’t get to find out what it is until next year. Okay, you don’t do that to little Miss Curiosity. I quizzed him endlessly, but to no avail. He’s a trial lawyer…nothing penetrates his armour!

The year goes by and I eventually forget about the present (I’m sure it was lingering in my subconscious.) One weekend, while up north at my parent’s cottage, he hands me a fantasy novel and recommends I read it. I’m like…wait a minute…I’m Ms. Suspense! But, being the trusting wife, I dig into the novel, Laura Anne Gilman’s STAYING DEAD. I enjoyed it, found the pacing strong, the characters fascinating. Then…in comes an older woman, an interesting villain…and her name is KimAnn Howe! I start laughing and realize what he has done. During an auction to support medical benefits for writers, my husband bought me a Tuckerism.

A "tuckerism" is the use of a friend's name as a character, place, equipment name, or the like in a story. The term is derived from the actions of Wilson "Bob" Tucker, who initiated this practice in SF books. For example, some of the Star Trek™ novels from Pocket Books are alleged to have names of the author's friends for minor characters.

I was so touched by his gesture. And this character—KimAnn Howe—who was supposed to show up in just one novel has turned into a strong presence in five novels! Okay, does that mean technically I’m multi-published?

Would you like to be a character in a novel? To celebrate making the final four of the American Title competition, I’m running a “Kill Me Off” contest. After voting for ONE SHOT, TWO KILLS, just send me an e-mail via my website http://www.kjhowe.com/ with the phrase “Kill Me Off” and your name. The lucky (???) winner will have his/her namesake suffer an untimely demise in my next novel. And, no, you cannot nominate your boss or mother-in-law! Yes, I know you won’t last five novels, but I promise to make “your death” memorable!

Here’s to Tuckerisms!

Kim

8 comments:

Susan said...

Great post, Kim!

Kimber said...

Voted for you Kim but I won't be entering your contest. 'Cause if I won, it'll look like you named a character after yourself!

Though that might be good for some publicity. I could see the headlines now...Vain Author Names Character After Self. Media Deemed Unworthy Of A Response.

Lots of fun. LOL

Diane Turnshek said...

Thanks for a lovely post, Kim. Tuckerizations live on, even though people are mourning the recent passing in 2006 of Bob Tucker.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wilson_Tucker
He also coined the term "space opera."

Thanks for entertaining us. You rock!

Diane

heidi ruby miller said...

You know I'm going to have to read Gilman's books now, Kim. I can't believe you never told us this before!

Too cool.

I voted for you again.

*fingers crossed*

~Heidi

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, my fellow Packer! Really enjoyed your post - never heard of Tuckerisms but I love the idea of you turning up in book after book to do your worst! Good luck for the next round of ATIII. I'd love you to win it!!! Anyway, you've got my vote.

Sinead M said...

Hey,

Tuckerism, never heard it described that way before. Excellent contest Kim. Would love to be Tuckerized in your next book.

Victoria Dahl said...

I've been trying to honor my best friend and CP for awhile, but she's too picky. In my last historical, I named a street urchin after her. He's a really cute (okay, sneaky) kid who plays a key role in the book. Did i get a lot of thanks? No way.

So in my current work, I used her last name (Echols) as the last name of the heroine's very first boyfriend. My friend seems a little perturbed that there are also a few size jokes about that first boyfriend, but come on! It's funny!

TJ Bennett said...

I killed off my critique group in one of my books. All with their permission, of course. I modeled each of my female victims of a serial killer after my CPs. They got a real kick out of seeing themselves systematically killed off. What can I say? My kind of gals.

From what I heard, however, one of the ladies' husbands didn't really get the joke, and was kind of freaked out about the whole thing. :-( I picked the youngest member of the group to survive her attack, and she felt very honored. LOL!

TJB

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