My favorite line from Lord of the Rings comes when Frodo has all but given up his quest, and Samwise says to him, "Come, Mr. Frodo ... I can't carry it for you, but I can carry you."
Writing is a lonely quest at times. You lose the path. You take the mountain pa.s.s only to realize you've made a mistake and must double back through a more treacherous route. Often there's no wizard to guide you. No signposts except those you conjure. Everything is up to you, and that can be daunting, at least to me. But though my friends and family may not be able to guide the story, they carry me with their love and friendship, and I'm lucky for it.
I'm also lucky to have found such a fine publishing home as Del Rey. Never once have I felt creatively constrained. Never once have I suspected they've desired anything but the best d.a.m.n story we can put on paper. David Moench, Joe Scalora, Keith Clayton, Tricia Narwani, Scott Shannon, Dave Stevenson, you're all b.l.o.o.d.yd.a.m.n saints as far as I'm concerned.
Now, as for my editor, Mike Braff. Never was there a greater bulls.h.i.t detector/Obsidian fanatic in all the worlds. You can thank him for the story's ravaging pace, unabashed killcount, and Kavax's fox, Sophocles. Thank you as well to Hannah Bowman who-along with Liza Dawson and Havis Dawson-took a chance on representing me, and to Jon Ca.s.sir for his patience and brilliant shepherding of the film rights.
Thank you also to Joel Phillips for beautiful maps and whiskey nights, Nathan Phillips for being the little brother I never had, Tamara Fernandez for the wisdom far beyond her years, Jarrett Price for making Los Angeles feel like home, Terry Brooks for taking the time to read a young author's first work, Scott Sigler for his generous praise, and Josh Crook for all the plans of mischief over breakfast.
To my parents, I owe you everything. You put a shovel in my hands instead of a video game controller. Digging in the woods was the best education I ever received. I've never met truer, kinder souls. You are the people I wish to be. And to my sister, Blair, thank you for making me wiser by teaching me the unique dangers of landing on a patient woman's bad side, oh, and also for being my ninja a.s.sa.s.sin.
In the end, I must always credit Aaron Phillips. Without him, there would be no Red Rising, no Golden Son. A true friend since we met studying abroad in Germany, he has watched me start fifteen books, finish six, and face rejection from agents more than a hundred times over seven years. When things grew dark, he lifted me up and urged me to continue on my quest. It's been a blessing seeing him grow, marry, and become as deep and true a man as Samwise Gamgee ever was.
It's strange thinking I wrote Red Rising four years ago above my parents' garage in Seattle. Stranger thinking I suspected only my friends would ever read it. So thank you, readers. Thank you for going on this journey with me. Thank you for letting me live a life as a dreammaker, the only thing I've wanted to do since my father read The Hobbit to me as a boy and I realized that the magic of man is in words, in tales, in legends lost and in those still yet to come.
BY PIERCE BROWN.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR.
PIERCE BROWN is the New York Times bestselling author of Red Rising and Golden Son. While trying to make it as a writer, Brown worked as a manager of social media at a start-up tech company, toiled as a peon on the Disney lot at ABC Studios, did his time as an NBC page, and gave sleep deprivation a new meaning during his stint as an aide on a U.S. Senate campaign. He lives in Los Angeles, where he is at work on his next novel.
PIERCE BROWN is available for select readings and lectures. To inquire about a possible appearance, please contact the Penguin Random House Speakers Bureau at 212-572-2013 or
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