Kevin J. Anderson has more than 140 published books, 56 of which have been national or international bestsellers. He has written numerous novels in the Star Wars, X-Files, and Dune universes, as well as steampunk fantasy novels Clockwork Angels and Clockwork Lives, written with legendary rock drummer Neil Peart, based on the concept album by the band Rush. His original works include the Saga of Seven Suns series, the Terra Incognita fantasy trilogy, the Saga of Shadows trilogy, and his humorous horror series featuring Dan Shamble, Zombie PI. He has edited numerous anthologies, written comics and games, and penned the lyrics to two rock CDs. Anderson and his wife Rebecca Moesta are the publishers of WordFire Press.
i write. i make up stuff. i adventure hard, so you don’t have to.
Last weekend I was up on Toronto as a guest speaker for RushCon 2012, a gathering of several hundred Rush fans at the Hard Rock Cafe—all in celebration of their favorite band and the concert Sunday night at the Air Canada Center.
I flew in Saturday evening, was picked up at the airport by my publicist Sarah from ECW Press (publishers of Clockwork Angels: The Novel), then drove me to my hotel just in time for me to arrive at the tail end of a fire alarm evacuation. It turned out to be only a sprinkler mishap but the lobby was filled with evacuees for more than an hour, all elevators shut down. I finally had to carry my book-filled suitcase up seven flights of stairs…but since I hadn’t had a chance to work out that morning before my flight, I was happy for the exercise again.
I had dinner with two former Writers of the Future winners, Tony Pi and Stephen Kotowych at a wonderful tap house, Bar Volo, with a huge craft beer selection. Back at the hotel, I edited another chapter of Mentats of Dune before I met RushCon organizer Jillian—in person at last—for a late-night planning session.
Next morning, I got another chapter edited before I headed out to the Hard Rock Cafe for RushCon. I chatted with some of the attendees, went on stage for a few minutes to introduce myself and tease my talk later that afternoon. Bakka Books from Toronto set up a table with many copies of Clockwork Angels: The Novel (hardcover and the unabridged audiobook read by Neil Peart), Resurrection, Inc., and some of my Roswell Six CDs. I got my photo taken at Neil’s old “Chromey” drum kit (used on Rush’s early albums), then gave my talk, read from the novel, answered questions, then signed books for a very long line.
My friend Jonathan Flamm came to Rushcon, and afterward we met Mark Lefebvre, my other guest at the concert that night at the Air Canada Center. We went out to dinner ahead of time at a microbrewery restaurant, then went to the concert venue. Neil had arranged tickets for us, which we picked up at the WillCall window along with our VIP stickers. All around the concert hall, stands were selling concert program books as well as copies of Clockwork Angels: The Novel—that was a surreal experience to see my book there!
We got to our seats as the concert hall filled up. Another guest of the band introduced himself to me, Don George, Neil’s first drumming instructor. We both agreed that he shows some promise.
And then the Rush concert, an amazing experience as usual, as expected, and still full of surprises and breathtaking moments. Being so intimately familiar with the Clockwork Angels album and all its underline story and imagery, this was a particularly special experience for me.
After the concert, back at the Rushcon hotel, I hung out with a lot of my new friends at the bar, then went to bed for my flight home next morning. My next Rush concert will be in Anaheim on November 17 for Rebecca’s birthday.