Tuesday, September 2, 2008

It's Here! The Book of Lies is Here!

OMG! It's like Christmas morning when I was a kid! Brad Meltzer's new book, The Book of Lies, is on sale today!

I can't wait to crack open the spine. Inhale that new book smell. Hear the pages turn. I just know it will be everything I've been anticipating for the last 2 years.

Why am I so excited you ask? Well, you see, this isn't just any book. And as I've mentioned before, Brad Meltzer isn't just any writer. He's my friend. I've known him for about 10 years and was at his first book launch party for The Tenth Justice at The Mansion on O Street during the summer of 1997. What a crazy and fun party. I'm still not sure how I finagled that invitation, but I'm sure glad I did.

I've been keeping a BIG secret about this book.

In January 2007, while working on the character development for The Book of Lies, Brad sent out the following, which he also posted on his blog:

Give help, without all the mushy hugging

Here're the questions for the day:

What one word describes your relationship with you parents?
When has your mom or dad let you down?
Describe an incident where your mom or dad broke your heart.
Describe an incident where your mom or dad made you feel strong.
Extra credit: Best or worst memory of mom or dad.

As always, feel free to reply and post here, or send them directly to me at [Brad's email]. Yes, this may show up in a book (so goodbye to your rights), but of course, no names will be named. We're not that crazy. :)

Thanks for playing and sharing. It means more than you realize.

Love, B
I'll be honest, I looked at the email (which he sent to a ton of people) and wanted to respond because Brad's my friend and who doesn't like to help their friends, but I had a great deal of trepidation because the truthful answers to some of the questions were things I rarely, if ever, spoke about. And I just wasn't sure I could.

My memory is that I sat on the email for a day or so before finally responding, but I didn't think it would go anywhere, so I responded. Imagine my surprise when a day or so later, I received an email from Brad asking if we could talk in further detail about what I'd shared. I think I threw up a little in my throat imagining talking about things I just didn't talk about (and, no, I'm not going to share them here either), but told him to call me. And we had a great conversation and he made it easy for me to share some really difficult and painful parts of my life.

In the last 18 months, Brad has shared bits and pieces of the plot, but I really haven't known what part, if any, of what I shared, made it into The Book of Lies. And I haven't thought about it too much.

And then last week, I read the prologue and first chapter on Brad's website and I was floored. I'm in the book! And there's a rumor (from Brad, himself) that I'm in the Acknowledgements too! I haven't seen that for myself yet, so for now, I'm just calling it a rumor.
So go buy the book and enjoy it. I promise you will.

And go see Brad at one of his book signings. He'll sign anything. His comics, books, anything. Just do it. Oh, and tell him I sent you. He'll love it. And then you'll know just what an amazing guy he is too.

Want more info on The Book of Lies? Go here.

And watch these super cool videos:

The Book is Real

Author Gets Slammed by Grandmother, the Press, the World

Save the Superman House

From an email last night from Brad:

So, as you may know, The Book of Lies goes on sale today and in honor of that, we're officially unveiling OrdinaryPeopleChangeTheWorld.com. This is my core belief. This is what I stand for. And this is what every project I've ever worked on has been about: To remind us that there is greatness inside all of us.

We are all ordinary. We are all boring. We are all spectacular. We are all shy. We are all bold. We are all heroes. We are all helpless. It just depends on the day.

The fact that you're reading this means (I hope) that you believe this too. So I put my dream in your hands. I put my book in your hands. And I appreciate anything you can do to share the above videos with the people you love and know. Some of you love Superman and will focus on the last one. Some love the novels, so you prefer the little kids and my grandmother. Some of you will love all three (hi, Dad!).

In this tough publishing world, where sales of ALL books are down in double digits, it does really matter if you can share these on the places you go (email, blog, myspace, facebook, message boards, etc).

And now it's midnight, which means we can let all of these loose on the world. Take a few minutes...share it with those you love. Then make an enemies list and share it with your foes. Wherever you put it is appreciated.

And for those who want even more details on Saving the Siegel House and the auction, please see below.

I'm headed off on tour, but please do come say hey so I can thank you personally. I know this sounds so pretentious, but I truly think we can change how books are sold. As I've said to many of you before, I know every author has family and friends, but they don't have our family and friends. Thank you for always being there. Always.

Much love,



As you can tell from the video, the goal of The Siegel & Shuster Society is to save the house where Superman was created. It would be ideal to post something in your own words, but you can post this FAQ as-is if you would like. Your choice.

The most important thing to do is to mention and link to the auction, encourage people to buy a shirt, and post the video (see below for link) on all the places you frequent. The video shows the state of the house and tells people about the auction starting today. As you'll see from the list of people involved, this isn't about DC or Marvel. This isn't about competition. It's about the comic community as a whole, pulling together for a place that launched so many of our best dreams.

I just hope you know how much I and everyone working on this project appreciate you being involved with it. And while we know it's just a house, it matters.

Attached are also two signatures for people to download or see on your sig. Feel free to share them. Below, is the full FAQ. And of course, lemme know if you have any questions.

FAQ (feel free to edit as you need)

What's this all about again?
Today is the official launch of The Siegel & Shuster Society, with a celebrity charity auction that'll raise money to preserve the home of Jerry Siegel, creator of Superman. When you go to Brad Meltzer's charitable website OrdinaryPeopleChangeTheWorld.com, you can:
- bid online for original Superman and comic book art and items by top writers and artists
- buy a Siegel & Shuster Society t-shirt (designed by the legendary graphic designer Chip Kidd)
- or just donate to the good cause.
The best way to show it is here: Save The Superman House.
All proceeds of the auction go to the restoration of the Siegel house.

Who's involved in the auction?
This is a coming together of an entire community. The full list includes: Stephen Colbert, Jim Lee, Brian Michael Bendis, Brad Meltzer, Geoff Johns, Richard Donner, Joe Quesada, Neil Gaiman, Alex Ross, Dave Gibbons, Jeph Loeb, Murphy Anderson, Ed Brubaker, John Cassaday, Gene Ha, Greg Rucka, George Perez, Michael Turner, Adam Kubert, Andy Kubert, Judd Winick, Frank Cho, Eric Powell, Tim Sale, Walt Simonson, Joe Staton, Eric Wight, Dave Mandel, Mike Mignola, Rags Morales, Bill Morrison, Ivan Reis, John Romita Jr., Jason Palmer, Amanda Conner, Geoff Darrow, Ron Garney, Renato Guedes, Heroes, Dave Johnson, Chris Bachalo, Mike Bair, Allen Bellman, Dan Brereton, Ernie Chan, Travis Charest, and Ian Churchill, YOU, and even Jerry Siegel (see below).

How did this come about?
While researching his new novel, The Book of Lies, Brad Meltzer visited the boyhood home of Jerry Siegel in Cleveland, Ohio, where Superman was created. As Meltzer says, "The house where Google was founded is preserved. The garage where Hewlett Packard was founded is protected. But the house where Superman was born? I was in shock." After contacting dozens of comic book creators -- and thanks to the hard work of many in the city of Cleveland -- The Siegel & Shuster Society was created and is dedicated to commemorating and celebrating the creation of Superman in Cleveland by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster. "I think sometimes people take things like this for granted because it started in cartoon form, but this is a house were modern mythology was created," Brain Michael Bendis adds. "Mythology that will never die away or disappear. There is no difference, to me, between this house and Mark Twain's house. We have to honor and exalt such creation."

What are the items in the auction?
You can win a walk-on part on Heroes, VIP seats to the Colbert Report, original Superman art (go see the art!), have your name in Bendis or Brubaker or Rucka's comic, or Meltzer's next novel. There's a rare original pre-Superman movie script from Geoff Johns, signed by Richard Donner. And Joanne Siegel told Meltzer that before Jerry Siegel died, he signed six Superman t-shirts that no one ever knew existed -- and then told her that if their family ever needed money, she should sell the shirts. Instead, she donated one of them to be auctioned off here. The signature is on a Superman: Quest For Peace(!) t-shirt. C'mon, baby, it's Jerry Siegel on a Quest for Peace shirt!

What can you do?
Forward and digg the video. Go buy a Siegel & Shuster Society t-shirt. They're cool. They're designed by Chip Kidd. They can't be bought anywhere else. Bid on some of the auctions and spread the word by sharing the video, sigs, and OrdinaryPeopleChangeTheWorld.com auction with your facebook, myspace, and live-breathing friends.

How much is the Siegel And Shuster Foundation trying to raise?
Depends on how successful we are. Phase 1 involves working on the exterior of the house: securing the roof, making sure the paint isn't rotting, doing the concrete work. That will hopefully protect the place from the outside. Joe Shuster's house (a few blocks away) was in such disrepair, it was torn down. The first goal is to collect $50,000 to deal with the outside. If we do that, then we'll go and tackle the much-needed-repairs on the inside.

Who lives there now?
The house is located in one of the tougher neighborhoods of Cleveland and is currently occupied by an African-American couple who have lived there for approximately 20 years, who have put up with all of us who have come visiting, but who don't have the money to do these repairs. Rather than kick anyone out on the street, the goal is to repair this place for them. Why? It's the right thing to do. In return, The Siegel & Shuster Society has the right to buy the house when it eventually goes up for sale.

Is there a long-term goal to make a museum?
The long-term goal is still being decided, and that's why you're invited to join The Siegel & Shuster Society and help us with those plans. Meetings are held monthly in Cleveland -- when you buy a shirt, they'll have your name. But one of the dreams is that one day, buses full of students will drive from all over Ohio, from Michigan, from any nearby state, and come to the fully-restored house -- covered and decorated with children's artwork inside -- and see where one of the world's greatest dreams was born. Go to OrdinaryPeopleChangeTheWorld.com to make it happen.

1 comment:

  1. I just happened to come across your site this morning and ... Wow! was I surprised to see that my very favorite author has a new book coming out. I'm elated! Brad is the very best writer... I always tell everyone this. Since I never buy hardcovers I will have to wait for the paperback but I'll buy it as soon as it is ready as a paperback. Thanks for the alert and info on Brad. Cheers!


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