Attention Dresdenphiles: Only TWO More Weeks Until #PeaceTalks – Heeeere’s HARRY!

We are really getting down to the wire, so I thought this might be a good time to focus on the star of the Dresden Files, namely, Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden, himself. So, here are some of my favorite Harry pictures and memes for you to enjoy, all in one handy place at the same time. 😀 Let’s call this indulgence “I’m Just Wild About Harry,” shall we? 😀 

I’m gonna get the show rolling with one of my very favorite pictures of Harry, taken right from the cover of Welcome to the Jungle #2, cover design by the fabulous Christian McGrath, with cover model  John Paul Pfeiffer.

Though this my personal favorite version of Harry Dresden, there are a lot of other representations out there. Out of all the rest, my favorite takes on Harry are paintings by Mika Blackfield, such as this next one. Therefore, art by McGrath and Blackfield are the images I’ll be focusing on, with a few interesting exceptions. And, surprise! I’m going to let the pictures do most of the talking today. 

Notice that in this one, Harry seems to be enjoying
some very interesting reading material.

Errrmmm…The Butcher Files?? 
😀

Now how about a few action scenes just to mix things up a bit?

And Last, a Few Chuckles Before You Go

And that’s my offering of visual treats for today. Hope you enjoyed taking a look at some of the art that this series has spawned. And guess what? Next Tuesday will be the last countdown post BEFORE the release of Peace Talks the following week. Can you believe the end is almost here? Why it seems like no time at all since I started these posts to pass the time until I could get my hands on a copy of Peace Talks, yet here it is. Almost upon us! Woohooo! See you guys next week! 🙂 

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Attention Dresdenphiles, Everywhere! Only 7 More Weeks Until #PeaceTalks Arrives!

Happy Tewe’s Day, Everybody! Guess what? We’re another week closer to the release of the long-awaited and greatly anticipated Peace Talks, Book 16 of the Dresden Files series! Yep, only seven more weeks to go, and my doesn’t the time just fly by? Yeah. Like a kid waiting for Christmas morning! Tick …….. tock.   Tick …….. tock. You get the idea. BUT, we are closer, so for that I’m going to be grateful. And I’m going to share some things with you that interested me. Hope you’ll enjoy them, too.

First, I thought maybe it would be appropriate to talk about the man who created Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden, Wizard Extraordinaire. That would be Jim Butcher, of course. I will admit that over the last six years, I’ve given serious thought to tracking Jim Butcher down and smacking him with a pizza so old and stale, even Toot-Toot the fairy wouldn’t touch it. However, I am too much in awe of his prodigious writing talent to do such a thing. Instead, I gnashed my teeth and bit my nails in silence, waiting, waiting, waiting for the day he would send forth the 16th installment of my favorite series of all time.  And finally, that day is drawing near!

For those of you who haven’t read his work, or followed his blog,
or seen him at a signing, this is what Jim Butcher looks like:

Or  maybe it’s more like this?

Unless, of course, it’s really more along these lines?

Hmmm. A man of many faces.
Well, one thing for sure,
Harry Dresden is obviously his alter-ego.
They could be twins separated at birth! See?
Here, he poses with a wizardly weapon,
and his
genuine Foo Dog, Mouse!

INTERESTING STUFF

Butcher wrote the first book in The Dresden Files—about a professional wizard, named Harry Dresden, in modern-day Chicagoas an exercise for a writing course in 1996 at the age of 25. Storm Front, the first novel in The Dresden Files, was picked up by Roc/Penguin Books for publishing. It was released as a paperback in April  2000Fool Moon followed nine months later on January 1, 2001, and the third book, Grave Peril, was published in September 2001. Thereafter, the release schedule slowed, with Summer Knight appearing on September 3, 2002. The fifth and sixth books, Death Masks and Blood Rites, appeared in August 2003 and 2004, respectively.  

For several years, you could pretty much count on a new Dresden Files book every year or so, until Skin Game (#15) was released in 2014. Then the drought began. Yes, I know there were graphic novels being written, and short stories (most of which are absolutely fantastic) appearing in various anthologies, and loads of other things going on in his life. (He is also the author of the Codex Alera series, a fantasy I quite enjoyed, and The Aeronaut’s Windlass, Book 1 of a new fantasy series that I hope will be continued.)

And those are all great things. BUT.  Harry disappeared for a very long time. I thought perhaps–unbeknownst to his fans–my favorite wizard had been yanked into the Nevernever and left there to wander lost and lonely as a cloud until the end of days! Happily, as we now know, he’s back! Thus my series of posts wherein the countdown of the weeks continues and I dance around all excited, while generally acting like a looney tunes.

~~~

On that note, I’m moving along to share a new meme I made this week. Hope you enjoy it. It’s one of my favorite pictures and quotes, out of many!

 

AND  HERE ARE A FEW MORE MEMES
FOUND FLOATING AROUND THE INTERNET.

 

 

 

Welp, that’s it for today, folks! I’ll be back next Tuesday with a brand new countdown update, more images and characters, and anything else I can think of you might enjoy! Hope to see you then!  

~~~

 

#TwoferTuesday No. 1 – The Countdown Continues – 13 More Weeks!

As promised, a bit more in celebration and anticipation of the upcoming release of Peace Talks, the 16th book in the Dresden Files series by Jim Butcher. Only 13 more weeks to go! 

~ A DRESDEN FILES TIDBIT ~

 All of the fabulous covers for this series were done by my favorite cover artist, Chris McGrath. Chris does some of the best fantasy covers out there, and his model for Harry Dresden (John Paul Pfeiffer) is on many of them, including Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn series, D. B. Jackson’s Thieftaker series, and more. John Paul is also the face I imagined for my own male “lead” in my Wake-Robin Ridge series. (I can dream, can’t I?) You can see more of Chris McGrath’s work HERE.

~ A DRESDEN FILES MINI-QUIZ ~

Which of these answers is correct?
Harry Dresden lives with three pet animals:
His dog, Mister
His cat, Mouse
His parrot, Beelzebub

(Note: Sorry, no prizes for this one. Just a fun way to see who’s been paying attention, who hasn’t, and who really doesn’t give a flip. 😀  Feel free to answer in the comments.)

And that’s it for today’s Countdown Post. I’ll be back next Tuesday with a few more images and tidbits for your browsing amusement. (And mine. Okay, mostly mine, probably. 😀 )

UNTIL THEN, REMEMBER:

Let the COUNTDOWN Begin!

It’s coming, folks! Yes! Believe it or not, Harry Dresden is BACK! According to every reliable source I can find, Jim Butcher’s latest adventure from the Dresden Files, Peace Talks, will be arriving on July 14!! Think of it! That’s a mere 14 weeks from today! And, yes! I know I’m ending every sentence with exclamation points, but I’ve been waiting SIX YEARS for him to get this book written and published! Six! Years!

That’s six years without my favorite adult Wizard in the world. Six years of wondering how the upcoming catastrophe will be averted. (Whatever it was. I mean, come on. I can’t be expected to remember all the details for more than half a decade, can I?) And most important of all—six years of waiting to see if Harry and Sgt. Karrin Murphy will finally, at LOOOONG last, take their relationship to the next level, in the totally obvious direction we’ve been expecting over the fifteen previous books!

You may expect to find future Peace Talk updates, filled with Dresden Files tidbits and images, over the next 14 weeks–right here! Same time, same channel. Tune in as we Dresden fans await the Big Day! See you next Tuesday! 

PEACE TALKS, DRESDEN FILES BOOK 16 IS NOW AVAILABLE FOR PRE-ORDER ON AMAZON!

Have you pre-ordered YOUR copy? I have.
(In case you hadn’t assumed that to be the case.)

#InspirationBoardSunday on Monday!

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One of My Favorite Fantasy Covers
(And don’t get me started on how much I love the Farseer Trilogy!)

Those of you who have followed The Write Stuff for some time know that I have a cork wall surrounding my computer area, and that I keep it filled with photos of people, places, animals, and other things I find inspiring. Generally, the photos change with the book I’m working on, but some things stay on the board pretty much all the time. Or at least, somewhere close by, so I can enjoy them, and be inspired by them.

It’s also no secret that I adore good cover art. I’ve often bought books because I couldn’t pass up the covers, and wanted to see them on my shelves. Happily, most books with covers that intriguing or beautiful turn out to be intriguing or beautiful stories, as well. But as a bonus, I have to say I find great covers extremely inspirational as art, in and of themselves.

Oh, sure, sometimes, they give me an idea for a story I’d like to tell, but often, it’s just the sheer beauty, the shivery touch of horror, or the intriguing glimpses of mystery that inspires me. I don’t get ideas for an actual book from all of the great covers I’ve found, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t inspirational. They are very much so, in a big way, and often inspire me to aim higher with each book I write.

Today, I’m going to share a few fantasy covers that have caught my eye in the last year or so. I’ve come very late to the fantasy genre, but find the covers to be some of the most beautiful, dynamic, and, often, positively shivery cover art out there. Let’s look at some of my favorites. Maybe some of them will inspire you, too.

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This cover pulled me from two shelves away at my local bookstore, and I knew I wasn’t leaving the place without it. I mean, look at it. This is obviously a very young man, almost a boy, standing with his hands on the hilt of his sword, surrounded by bodies. Right away you have to wonder if he’s, indeed, responsible for all those lives lost. But truthfully, what caught my eye was the wonderful graphic element of his cape, whirling through the air like the wings of a some deadly bird of prey. I love everything about the cover, and I loved the book, too, though it is dark and disturbing. (This was my introduction to the “grimdark” sub-genre of fantasy. It was grim. And dark.) It is still one of my all time favorite covers.

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When I first saw this clever and beautiful cover for Leigh Bardugo’s fantastic Six of Crows, I thought it might be the most  brilliantly conceived cover design I’d ever seen.

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Then the sequel came out, and really blew me away. I would love to have prints of the original art for both of these books, hanging on my library walls. I look at the cities hidden within, and my imagination takes flight with the crows. Both of these books are favorite reads of mine, as well, especially Crooked Kingdom.

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Moving into the realm  Urban Fantasy, no one writes it better than Jim Butcher, and Harry Dresden is probably my all-time favorite character, across all genres. Chris McGrath is, hands down, my favorite cover artist, and every single one of his Dresden Files book covers is a work of art. This is one of the best. How can your mind not marvel at the image of the world’s greatest (grown-up) wizard kneeling beside his own grave? (The tombstone is completely legible on the book, honest.) The pale, neutral tones are very different from the dark color schemes of the other books in the series, and they set this one apart as the work of genius that it is.

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While I’m thinking of Urban Fantasy, here’s another Chris McGrath cover, from the Leandros brothers series, which I was once a huge fan of. The cover depicts the two brothers, braced for trouble which tends to find them at every turn. But you wouldn’t have to know that to see it in the stance of Niko, sword ready for whatever’s coming, and in the wary expression on Cal’s face, gun at his side. Every line of their bodies indicates tension, and you wonder immediately what it is they’re watching for.

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If the covers of the first two books in Rachel Caine’s Great Library series don’t inspire you, I can’t imagine what would. The rich detail and vibrant colors are so striking, I put mine on easels on my library shelves, so I’d see them every day. Just looking at them makes me happy. (And I love this YA series, too. The premise that the Great Library of Alexandria was never destroyed is done up in a surprising way, and the characters are wonderfully well drawn. But it’s when I study the covers that my imagination really soars.

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I’ve just realized that sharing my favorite and most inspirational fantasy covers is an impossible task. For every one I upload, 100 more are crying out to be displayed as well. So I’m going to have to rein in my enthusiasm for fantasy covers, and I think I’ll stop on this one. I’m not going to say it’s my one of my very favorites, though it was dramatic enough to convince me to give this series a try, while awaiting Butcher’s next Dresden Files book. I’m just going to say it was the very first real fantasy I ever read, and I enjoyed it enough to read the entire Codex Alera series. I was hooked, and all because I wanted to know why these lightning creatures were after this young man. So, while it might not appeal to my artistic side as much as some of the ones above, it did the job it was meant to do, and I bought the book. The rest is history.

Hope this post will encourage you to take a look around your library with new eyes. Maybe a cover will give you an idea for something you’d never considered before. Or maybe, like me, you’ll find yourself realizing what great works of art they can be. Go forth, now, and BE INSPIRED!! 😀 And let me know what fantasy covers you love. I’m always adding to my collection.