It’s here at last! The final giveaway before my birthday arrives!

And for the last giveaway, it’s a doozy, a real whopper, a quarter-pounder-with-fries-hold-the-rat-tail-and-cockroach-shells kind of giveaway!

Wonderbook

Meet Wonderbook, by Jeff Vandermeer and Jeremy Zerfoss, the Illustrated Guide to Creating Imaginative Fiction! A dense, beautiful book packed to the very tippity-toppity brim with writing advice, essays, anecdotes, cartoons, maps, illustrations, thoughts, concerns, odd political statements, (ahem maybe not), and more. It’s a gorgeous book, a ton of fun, and holds wisdom from every corner of speculative and genre fiction and more!

And a signed copy, desecrated by Mr. Vandermeer’s own blessed, chaotic scrawl could be yours! All you need to do is comment below, and answer this question for a chance to win: If you could have someone read one book, what would it be and why?

That’s it! Though my birthday is on Saturday, the contest will run until next Wednesday to give folks plenty of time.

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3 thoughts on “Reverse B-Day Giveaway: Wonderbook by Jeff Vandermeer and Jeremy Zerfoss

  1. Hey Marty, I’m in love with this book! Here’s my go at it:

    If I could have someone read just one book, it would be Way of the Peaceful Warrior, by Dan Millman. This is the only self help book I’ve ever found helpful. Its a spiritual story that only has one real message: pay attention to life. It teaches this through a semi-autobiographical story of Dan, an aspiring young college athlete, and Socrates, a mysterious old gas station attendant who gradually teaches Dan, through a series of zen lessons and hilarious late night conversations, to pay attention to life, to all the pain, heartbreak, and wonder that exists in every single moment. It’s a spiritual book, but only in the broadest sense. It seeks to teach us how to live, but not by any particular dogma, or rules: only how to literally live, how to carpe diem, how to suck the marrow out of life by recognizing the infinity of sensation packed into every second of every breath.

    I think of my grandfather, who recently passed, who I loved dearly but who always seemed unhappy, focused on the trespasses people committed against him in the past, and the worries he had for the future, both his own and the world’s. I wonder, if only my father had read Peaceful Warrior, had taken its simple, beautiful message of living in each moment, of seeing the beauty in all the pain and joy that life has to offer, if maybe he could have been less worried, happier, and freer.

    The book’s cheesy marketing slogan is that it “changes lives,” but I find for once in my life I agree with the marketing department. Peaceful warrior is a religious book with no religion at its center. Its message may appear to be cliche to the point of absurd, but its that elegant simplicity that makes it so profound. The story is funny, moving, sad, inspirational and always entertaining, and makes for the perfect delivery mechanism for its message of enjoying every moment. My favorite musician is Warren Zevon. When he was dying of cancer and knew he only had a few months to live, he went on the David Letterman show, where Letterman asked him if knowing he only had a few months to live had taught him anything about life. Warren’s response was, “Yeah. How much you’re supposed to enjoy every sandwich.” Warren eventually died of mesothelioma, the same cancer that too my grandfather’s life. And I think if more people were to read Peaceful Warrior while they had time, while life was still young, they might learn that lesson that Peaceful Warrior preaches, and that Zevon summed up so eloquently.

  2. Just one book? Jeez. Probably The Little Prince then. It’s beautiful, easy to read, and contains the best philosophical explorations of love. Way better than The Symposium.

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