2010 Blizzard Global Writing Contest Announced

Blizzard has announced the 2010 Blizzard Global Writing Contest. Get the chance to visit Blizzard’s headquarters and BlizzCon. Meet the Creative Development Team as a bonus. Who wouldn’t want to shake hands with Chris Metzen the Bourbon Cowboy, and Micky Neilson?

Blizzard Quote:
You’re called to action once again, to use your wits and strength, to compete for the ultimate prize. Your weapons? They seem to be but a musty tome and quill, but know that their power is far stronger than the armies of the Scourge, far craftier than the zerg Swarm, and far mightier than any demon from the Burning Hells. Ready your tools, scribe, and prepare for combat with the inky beast called fiction!

Enter a short story for the chance to win a free trip to Blizzard’s headquarters in southern California! This contest is open to entrants from around the world and will be judged by Blizzard’s very own writers and masters of lore. For more information, head to the contest page:
http://us.blizzard.com/en-us/community/contests/writing2010

Keith R.A. DeCandido @ Forbidden Planet – New York City

Keith R.A. DeCandido will be at Forbidden Planet signing some Farscape comics today April 22 at 6:30pm. Bring your copies of World of Warcraft: Cycle of Hatred, StarCraft: Ghost: Nova, and StarCraft: Ghost Academy and say hi to the author.

Take the # 4 or # 6 Subway Train to 14 street (Union Square) and walk a few blocks)

Forbidden Planet (Map)
840 Broadway (corner with East 13 Street)
New York, NY 10003

Keith R.A. DeCandido and Aaron Rosenberg at LunaCon 2010

The Con-hopper Keith R.A. Decandido barely got back from Emerald City Con in Seattle, and now he’s heading to Lunacon 2010 — New York’s Oldest Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention — this coming weekend, and then to I-Con the following week.

Lunacon 2010 will be held at:

Hilton Rye Town Hotel (Map)
699 Westchester Avenue
Rye Brook, NY 10573
(914) 939-6300

Keith R.A. DeCandido wrote Starcraft: Ghost Nova, Starcraft: Ghost Academy and World of Warcraft: Cycle of Hatred.

Aaron Rosenberg is also attending the Lunacon to direct some panels. Aaron wrote Starcraft: Queen of Blades, World of Warcraft: Tides of Darkness and co-wrote World of Warcraft: Beyond the Dark Portal. Bring these with you and catch them for a quick photo and signing.

While none will have any Blizzard novel signings or panels there, if you are going to Lunacon, you might wish to say hi, and get your novels signed.

These are their Schedules:

Will Write For Dice
Saturday, March 20 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Room: Westchester D6

So you wrote a game or module for an existing game… What’s the next step?  Can you just send it straight to your favorite game publisher?  Should you camp on Steve Jackson’s doorstep?  What are realistic steps for getting started writing for the gaming industry?  Should you borrow money from you friends and strike out on your own?  (Is this one time the self-pub press actually works?)

Kevin DiVico [M], Charles Gannon, Mike McPhail, Aaron Rosenberg

Reading
Saturday, March 20 11:30 AM – 12:00 PM
Room: Elija Budd

Autographing
Saturday, March 20 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
Room: Westchester Assembly


Aaron Rosenberg

Bite Me
Saturday, March 20 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
Room: Grand North

Blood Ties. True Blood. Being Human. Vampire Diaries. Vampires have always been a major (if rather dark and alluring) presence in our printed media, but lately they’ve sunk their fangs deep into our airwaves as well. What do they bring to this form of entertainment and what does the television offer them? Will the rest of their supernatural cohorts be far behind?

Joshua Bilmes, Ginjer Buchanan, Tanya Huff [M], Kim Kindya, Aaron Rosenberg, Lisa Sullivan

Short Fiction and Its 9 Lives
Saturday, March 20 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Room: Odelle

Though some have been predicting its demise for years, why hasn’t short fiction died yet? Are we really entering into a new golden age for short fiction?

James Chambers, Neil Clarke [M], Keith DeCandido, Marvin Kaye, Ian Randal Strock

System vs. Setting
March 20 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Room: Birch

Nearly all RPGs share some similiarities: they have a set of rules that govern play, and most have a setting or world where play takes place. Some people love systems for their rule systems, and other are drawn in to the romance of a particular setting. Which is it for you: the math or the poetry, that makes or breaks a game?

Kathryn Baker, Steve Brinich [M], Heidi Hooper, Hal Johnson, Mike McPhail, Aaron Rosenberg

Comic Book Crossovers
Saturday, March 20 8:00 PM – 9:00 PM
Room: Birch

Everyone knows that adapting books for the big screen takes some skill. But not everyone realizes that adapting books for comics is just as demanding. But it’s not just books that make the cross, either. TV shows and movies are being adapted and expanded as comic book series as well. Panelists discuss both the process of these adaptations and why they’re worth doing.

Keith DeCandido [M], Glenn Hauman, C.J. Henderson, Hal Johnson

SUNDAY

To Write, Or To Have A Life? Can You Do Both?
Sunday, March 21 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Room: Odelle

The life of a writer is hard, yet rewarding, like a body-building genie.  How to balance multiple projects and get them all done, without killing yourself. Being able to get them all done and still have an active social life…well, that may take more than one panel to explain.

Ty Drago,Laura Anne Gilman, Bob Greenberger, C.J. Henderson, Aaron Rosenberg [M]

Knowing Your Place: The Role of a Tie-In Writer
Sunday, March 21 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Room: Odelle

You may be the writer, but you’re not the license holder, and that means you have to set your ego—and sometimes your narrative—aside. Is it possible to write tie-ins and still maintain creative control, even a little? Are media tie-ins and fanfiction just two sides of the same coin?

Keith DeCandido, Bob Greenberger [M], Glenn Hauman, Aaron Rosenberg

Whither Wander You?
Sunday, March 21 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Room: Birch

The physical journey can mirror and drive the spiritual journey of the characters, while providing an interesting and amusing source of external conflict.  When done poorly, it can devolve into tedium, and wreak havoc on the pacing of the novel.  How do you keep one from sliding into the other?  What are some of the best travel scenes we’ve written and read?  Which have been done poorly?  How do you write a compelling travel scene without losing the reader to what seems like a hundred pages of endless trudging through snowy wastelands?

Alma Alexander [M], Peter V. Brett, Sam Butler,  Keith DeCandido, Josepha Sherman

2009 Blizzard Holiday Card

I have never heard of a Game Studios so involved with its fansites and community as Blizzard Entertainment. They invite fansites to Blizzcon, to the Blizzard Worldwide Invitationals, fansite hands-on gameplay and Studio tours. The community managers send email and flash news, post twitter updates and keep in contact with fansites often year-round.

This Christmas, Blizzard sent all members of the Fansites Program a special 2009 Holiday Card. I was curious why they have sent mail to me, and when I opened the envelope, there it was. Got me excited. Below you can see me holding the holiday card that arrived to my physical mailbox. You can download the 1804×1167 version here to set as your desktop wallpaper or to print at Kinkos.

JINX 2010 New Year’s Eve Offer: 20% Discount Off

J!NX announced a limited special offer that allows you to get a 20% discount off your entire order. Simply type the promo code in caps: CHEERZ at checkout to enable the 20% discount. Go to the World of Warcraft or Starcraft II store to order your T-shirts for yourself or as a gift to friends & family.

Regardless of whatever winter holiday(s) you may or may not observe, we want to extend our warmest greetings from the J!NX Fortess and wish you and yours the best! As a little bonus, we’re also giving you a code for 20% off any orders for the rest of the year! Just use promo code “CHEERZ” during checkout.*

*As usual, not valid in combination with any offer. Expires 12/31/2009 at 11:59 PM EST.

-Jinx

New Warcraft and Starcraft Dioramas?

Sideshow Collectibles produced a limited edition of Tychus Findlay on 2007 when Blizzard announced Starcraft II was in development. The question ever since has been: Will Sideshow Collectible create more Starcraft dioramas? The short answer is yes, but not soon. Which character would you guarantee to pre-order if they made a diorama of?

  • Kerrigan
  • Zeratul
  • Nova
  • Jim Raynor
  • Selendis
  • Arcturus Mengsk
  • Valerian Mengsk
  • Gabriel Tosh

Will you make more pieces from Starcraft? My Tychus Findlay is starting to get lonely.

Sideshow Collectibles: Yes, we continue to look at Blizzard titles for product opportunities. At the moment, we

Merry Christmas, Blizzard and Fans!!!

It’s that time of the year when families get together in special times to celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, or Kwanzaa. It’s meant to be a time of joy. I wish everyone happy holidays, especially all the people at Blizzard including those I have personally met or interacted with such as Chris Metzen, Mike Morhaime, Paul Sams, Frank Pearce, Ghostcrawler, Jeff Kaplan, Nethaera, Karune, Bashiok, Jay Wilson, J. Allen Brack, Wryxian, Changwoon Jung (who takes care of flight and hotel whenever I go to Blizzcon and to the Blizzard campus — thanks a bunch).

I gotta thank Chris Metzen for many things, he creates fantasy and sci-fi worlds that have entertained and enlightened me over the years not only through the games, but through books, manga and comic books. Chris Metzen got me invited to the fansites’ Starcraft II single player hands-on back on July 17th where I interviewed him. It was great when I was recording video of a Starcraft II panel at Blizzcon, and I heard this voice calling my name. When I turned my face to the side, it was Chris Metzen waving at me. That was absolutely awesome, and I felt a lot of joy within to have someone I am a fanboy of remember me and say hi. His work and his worlds inspire to wish to be better each day. You can learn things from certain stories, that you would not learn normally in real life for lack of living those experiences.

I emailed Chris Metzen a couple of weeks ago simply to apologize for that Sargeras article I wrote a few days ago. I had meant to write about it for a long time — ok, two years late — and used a photo by Gadgetress (OCRegister) of Chris Metzen from the 15th Anniversary of Warcraft celebration held at the Blizzard campus. The Sargeras article brought up the retcon, and possible reasons the creative team had to infuse a new direction to the story, while I was also exploring and parodying the reaction from fans when this retcon took place a couple of years ago.

To make a long story short, in the parody I used this photo of Chris Metzen that looked like those facepalm images, and I added a few parody words concerning the retcon. You know, at that moment it looked fun to use the photo in the context of the article, but I still felt uneasy within. I emailed him to apologize. It’s not my nature to cause stress to people or make them feel bad, or do bad things on purpose. I’m a nice guy, honest and overall a good guy. A bit funny sometimes, which contrast with my shy personality.

Chris Metzen was pretty cool about it, no hard feelings from him for using the photo in that context. However, I want to share that at the time that photo was taken, he had a speech about what all those 15 years at Blizzard creating all these worlds meant to him. It’s easy to say 15 years, but it’s a long time and a large chunk of your life dedicated to writing, inventing, jammin’ ideas within and with other fellow writers. It was a very emotional moment, that I can just grasp and imagine. It was a meaningful moment, that I am really sorry to have parodied.

While there’s a lot of trolls out there who might think otherwise, many people — including me — love the work Chris Metzen, Micky Neilson and the Creative Team have done over the years. We are very proud of you, Chris. Merry Christmas!

JINX T-Shirts – Free 2-Day Shipping Christmas Special

J!NX is letting WoW and Starcraft T-shirt fans know that it’s not yet too late to order in time for a Christmas gift with the Free 2-Day shipping offer. The talking Murloc plush toy is a must-have gift too.

Free 2-Day Shipping
Think it’s too late to get a gift in time? Not with FREE 2-Day shipping! Buy 3 or more tees, get free 2-Day shipping anywhere in the US! Not valid with any other offer or sale item. Expires 12/22 @ 1 PM EST.

Holiday Shipping Schedule
To receive your order by December 24th, use the shipping method schedule below:
Two-Day Service Dec 22 *
One-Day Service Dec 23 *
Gift Certificates Dec 24 *

*Order before 11 AM (EST), 10 AM (CST), 9 AM (MNT), 8 AM (PST)

Blizzard Holiday Dessert Contest 2009

Blizzard has launched a new contest aimed at fans who have leveled up their real life cooking experience. Use your skills to create food shaped like anything from the main Blizzard franchises: popular characters, mobs, buildings, or objects.

What can be better than fresh-baked cookies or cakes? Cookies, cakes, and scrumptious desserts created with care to represent elements of the Warcraft, StarCraft, or Diablo universes, of course! We’re holding our Blizzard Holiday Dessert contest again and calling out all those talented bakers and pastry chefs to get out their flour, sugar, and rolling pins to create something amazing to tantalize the eye. Find out more on our contest page!

Prize

Ten amazing delicious delights will be chosen to win one set of the following books:

Arthas, Night of the Dragon, Beyond the Dark Portal, Tides of Darkness, Rise of the Horde, War of the Ancients Archive, and the Warcraft Archive

Blizzcon 2009: Christie Golden Book Signing Videos

Pocket Books invited me to witness their Blizzcon 2009 book signing event on Saturday at 4pm where Jaime Costas and her husband raffled 40 copies of the World of Warcraft: Arthas Collector’s Edition.  I brought my video camera and captured most of the event.  There was a large amount of fans awaiting to win one of those, but also to get their own merchandise signed by Christie Golden.  I could see some World of Warcraft: Arthas (Normal Edition) and Starcraft: The Dark Templar trilogy brought by fans to be signed by the author. The place was crowded with fans that were excited to meet her.

If you recognize a friend in the two videos, let them know the link to this page.  It’s available to all attendees as a memento. I was glad to be there.  I realized I haven’t taken photos of myself with the authors in all the events I have been attending.  This time I had the chance to take a photo with all the publishers and book writers. I have been in contact with all of them quite often.  It feels like family already. Watch video # 1 below, and video # 2 here.

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