Archive for the ‘Penguin Random House’ Category

Here’s the full cover art for Albatross

Monday, May 13th, 2019

Albatross

I’m not suggesting you’ll be able to read the cover copy, but you can at least see how the book will look when it arrives in stores in August. I’m very happy with it, but book cover design is such a subjective world. We just wanted it to be arresting so that readers notice it on the shelves. My deep thanks to the designer, Five Seventeen (yes, that’s his name) for the “look,” and Bhavna Chauhan, my editor for coordinating the whole design process. My twin brother Tim took the quickly-aging author photo on the back flap.

Albatross will be an audiobook, but…

Monday, May 6th, 2019

Albatross podcast

I’ve had quite a few emails and social media queries about when the Albatross podcast will start, so I think it’s time to break some news. After producing the podcast editions of my first six novels on my own, underwriting their hosting, and giving them away for free on iTunes and on this blog, I’ve decided to accept a contract from Penguin Random House to produce the Albatross audiobook. So the good news is, Albatross will be available as a downloadable audiobook on August 13, the novel’s publication date. As well, I’ve been contracted to do the reading. So if you’re a regular listener of my podcast novels, it’ll still be my voice ringing in your ears for Albatross. On the downside, the audiobook will not be free. Sorry about that. I’m not sure what the price will be, but it should be comparable to other audiobooks.

So why break with tradition? Why not self-produce the podcast version of Albatross and make it available for free as I did for my first six novels? Well, it is a lot of work to produce the podcast and to at least try to approach the production values of professionally produced audiobooks. As well, having six separate podcast feeds means that I’m paying six separate monthly hosting charges to make the podcast novels available to any listener on the planet with a highspeed internet connection (and I’ll continue to do that for my first six novels). By signing with Penguin Random House Audiobooks, I’ll gain a modest revenue stream that I have not had with my earlier novels. And I can assure you, virtually all Canadian writers are in need of additional revenue streams.

Moreover, the wonderful Ann Jansen, with whom I worked for several years when she led CBC Books and CBC Canada Reads, now runs the audiobook operation at Penguin Random House. I welcome the chance to work with her again. I’ll be heading into a professional recording studio in early June to read Albatross under Ann Jansen’s watchful eye and acute ear.

In the meantime and for the foreseeable future, you can still find the podcast versions of my first six novels on iTunes and here on this blog. I’ll keep you posted on the recording process and thanks for your understanding.

Finally, I remain very grateful for my loyal podcast listeners. It was the positive feedback I unexpectedly received to the podcast of my first novel, The Best Laid Plans, that gave me the resolve to go ahead and self-publish the novel when no publisher seemed interested. That was a decision that changed my life as a writer.

 

Cover reveal for Albatross

Sunday, April 28th, 2019

As promised, here is the cover design for my seventh novel, Albatross, to be released on August 13th. The goal of any cover is to reach out from bookstore shelves, grab readers by the lapels as they walk past, and force them to take a closer look. I think this cover scores very well on the old “eye-catching” meter. Breaking up the word Albatross using the hyphen is unusual and I hope makes the cover a little more arresting than if the word had been displayed in the usual fashion.

As for symbolism, the cover leans on the “gilded cage” metaphor. My narrator, Adam Coryell, is blessed or cursed, depending on your perspective, with unmatched natural ability at golf. This grants him fame and fortune beyond any sane person’s wildest imagination. Yet he is not happy in his life. Not to put too fine a point on it, Adam’s golf prowess “imprisons” him in a gilded cage. The novel tells the story of how he found himself in the cage, and how he escaped.

I’m very happy with the cover, though I know it will not appeal to everyone. Here’s hoping it does its job and catches bookstore browsers’ eyes starting in mid-August. My thanks to my editor, Bhavna Chauhan, and the design team at McClelland & Stewart (Penguin Random House) for coming up with this. It was not a straightforward design challenge.

Albatross Final Cover

 

First blurb is in for One Brother Shy

Wednesday, February 1st, 2017

Blurbs barwin-yiddish

I’m thrilled that Gary Barwin, the brilliant and funny author of Yiddish for Pirates, a Giller Prize and Governor-Generals Award finalist, has offered up a lovely blurb about One Brother Shy. At least a phrase or two will likely appear on the front or back covers when my sixth novel hits bookstores in late May. I’m always gratified and humbled by the wonderful support I’ve received from fellow writers. Gary is a lovely, creative, and very funny guy, and I was so happy for him when his extraordinary novel, Yiddish for Pirates was such a hit this past year. I’m grateful to him for these kind words:

One Brother Shy is a two-for-one flight of invention, full of hilarious one-liners. A compelling and surprising tale about the discovery of the abiding importance and inspiration of family is twinned with a rich portrait of characters in keenly observed social contexts. The wit and brio of the storytelling belies its sensitivity and emotional depth and the many secrets waiting in the wings to be uncovered. Terry Fallis has written another fast-paced, incisive, and wry novel that doesn’t shy away from the enjoyably genuine and the genuinely human.”

Gary Barwin, author of Yiddish for Piratesa Scotiabank Giller Prize and Governor-General’s Literature Prize Finalist

Ten years later…

Thursday, January 5th, 2017

2016-a

Early January is traditionally when I take a reflective look back across the preceding year and give thanks for all the good fortune that still seems to be trailing me around in my now ten year old life as a novelist. I do find it hard to believe that a decade has elapsed since I started this blog and began podcasting my first novel, The Best Laid Plans. A decade! If you’d told me back in 2007 that ten years later McClelland & Stewart would be publishing my sixth novel, One Brother Shy, I’d at least have scoffed if not collapsed in hysterics. Yet here we are.

2016 was another eventful year in my writerly life:

  • I slowed down a bit more on the readings, signings, and talks front. I logged 75 appearances, down from over a hundred in 2015. This wasn’t really a conscious decrease, but just seemed to work out that way. (It’s of course possible that people are growing tired of me.) However, I did seem to travel to a few more exotic locales including visits to Whitehorse, Galiano and Pender Islands, Cape Breton Island, and, of all places, the United Arab Emirates.
  • November was an unprecedented month of travel for me, though only one stint of the voyage was book-related. I happily spent time in New York, Orlando, Paris, and the aforementioned United Arab Emirates. I was in UAE for the Sharjah International Book Fair. I spoke at the American University of Sharjah and then, likely for the one and only time in my life, sat on a panel at the book fair where the language was Arabic and I was given headphones for simultaneous translation. It was a fascinating experience.

I think that about wraps up the highlights of another busy year. I’m hard at work planning my seventh novel as we head into 2017 and hope to be writing the manuscript by the time One Brother Shy is released in May. In March, I’ll be starting to podcast One Brother Shy, chapter-by-chapter, as is my practice. It’ll be available as a free download on iTunes and this blog. I also have some travel coming up later in the spring with a seven day reading tour of the Gulf Islands off BC’s west coast. I’ll also likely be teaching my Humour Writing course at the University of Toronto’s School of Continuing Studies starting later this month.

Happy New Year!

The cover art for One Brother Shy

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2016

One Brother Shy cover (lower res)

Well here it is, the cover art for my sixth novel, One Brother Shy, due in bookstores in June 2017. Clearly Penguin Random House/McClelland & Stewart is trying to give my novels a certain recognizable look and feel, as this design is similar to the covers of my last two novels. My deep gratitude to the wonderful designer, Five Seventeen (and yes, that’s his name) for this cool and colourful cover.

As for what the feather and scotch tape symbolize, well, I’ll leave it to you to connect the dots after you’ve read the novel.

And yes, I will be podcasting this novel starting sometime in March.

Just to let you know where we are in the publishing process, we’re now in the final copyediting stage. Just looking for errant commas and misplaced periods. Almost there…

 

I’ve started writing the manuscript for novel #6

Saturday, March 5th, 2016

Starting blocks

Yes, it’s time to dust off my traditional starting blocks metaphor, that I think I’ve used for nearly all of my novels. How very creative of me. It may be tired and shopworn, but it feels like the perfect analogy for my writing process. Olympic sprinters train for a very long time just so they can then run the big race. In the same way, other than the Olympic part, I spend many months creating, shaping, and mapping out a new story in anticipation of the chance to write it. Only when the very detailed outline is finished (for this novel, it took a year and is 79 pages), can I slip into the starting blocks and begin to write the manuscript itself. Well the gun just sounded and I’m out of the blocks.

I’ve now finished the first of 17 chapters of the manuscript for my sixth novel, One Brother Shy. While I love the story-mapping and outlining phase, it always feels good to start writing the real sentences of the manuscript. In this new novel, as is my custom, I’m writing about something I know a thing or two about. It’s the story of a pair of identical twins. You may or may not know that I am an identical twin. One Brother Shy is not in any way autobiographical, but I can certainly write about the experience of being a twin with some authority and authenticity (at least, that’s the plan).

In One Brother Shy, a loved one dies, secrets are revealed, mysteries are solved, oceans and continents are crossed, the lost are found, closure is gained, and someone is nearly made whole again. Oh yeah, and it’s funny, too (at least I hope it’s funny).

We’re in discussions with Penguin Random House/McClelland & Stewart right now about timing and hope to have something to report on that front shortly. In the meantime, it’s back to the manuscript…