I want to take a moment to talk up the master craftsmen, craftswomen, and craftspeople we have here in Colorado. Geekify (www.geekifyinc.com) is a local company, and you should all go check them out. They are a bunch of extremely nerdy people (my people) who design custom kindle cases, iPad cases, gadgets and pendants and D20 dice cases and maps and replicas of famous books from fantasy lore. They are remarkable.
This is the kindle cover they made for me. It has a TARDIS on the front, because my library is my TARDIS, through which I explore all of time and all of space. This cover is a tiny little thing that is much bigger on the inside: it will hold inside it a library more vast than my ancestors could have dreamed.
On the back, the White Tree of Minas Tirith, a symbol of hope that persists across oceans and millennia, a reminder that new blossoms can flower from what appears dead. As well as a list of my oldest fandoms, the stories I return to over and over again.
On the spine, the inscription ‘Stant Litore’ – the motto, pen name, and life story I adopted for myself two decades ago. Latin, from the Aeneid. When Troy is burning and the sky is full of ash and smoke, the refugees fleeing down to the coast can see that everything they have ever known or loved has burned away. It is simply gone. Forever. But ahead of them, someone is yelling out: Hurry! Hurry! The ships stand at the shore [stant litore puppēs], they are ready to take you away. The anchor is already drawn up. Hurry!
What none of the survivors know at that moment, what they can’t know, is that once they embark on those ships and cross the wine-dark sea, they will found Rome, a civilization that will last – in one form or another – for three thousand years. There is a future ahead of them that is more vast and beautiful than they can possibly imagine. It does not change anything that has been lost. It does not erase the loss. It simply means the story has not ended. Not yet, not nearly.
That is something I have always needed and wanted to remember: the story and the name at the heart of all my stories.
If you’re new to my work, you can check out my stories here.
And go check out Geekify. I adore their work. Buying local is easy when it is so beautiful. Here are glimpses of other projects they have made for me over the years.
A Neverending Story tablet cover:
And a leather-bound, rebound Book of the New Sun omnibus. We took the ‘Severian of the Guild’ paperback from Gollancz (a UK publication) and bound it and added a ribbon. The book is surprisingly durable: