: This is Part III is a series of blog posts. Click here
to read yesterday's post.]
As I wrote in my post yesterday, I was able to obtain a stunningly accurate Oscillation Overthruster replica from a talented prop maker named Shawn, who I found online. The only problem was, my Overthruster arrived unpainted and disassembled, and I lacked the artistic skills to complete it. Everyone knows that you can't travel through solid matter with an unpainted Overthruster. I needed help, and fast, if I was going to have the Overthruster finished in time for my book tour.
I put the word out on my Facebook and Twitter pages, asking my friends if they knew of someone who could replicate the amazing paint job on Shawn's replica. Within a few hours, my friend Deanna Hoak sent me a message. Deanna copyedited Ready Player One and did an amazing job. Not only is Deanna one of the most respected copyeditors in the business, she's also been a gamer her whole life, and she even found the Secret Room in Atari's Adventure back in the '80s. So she was able to copyedit Ready Player One with a gamer geek's eye for detail, and that made a huge difference. And in addition to being a brilliant copyeditor, Deanna is also an incredibly cool and friendly person, and she was eager to help me out.
Over email, Deanna introduced me to another writer friend of hers, the incredibly talented Mary Robinette Kowal. In addition to being a Hugo-nominated short story author and a Nebula-nominated novelist, Mary is also the vice president of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (an organization I recently joined). And on top of all of those accomplishments, Mary is also a professional art director and puppeteer who has done work for Jim Henson Productions. One of her many talents is doing detailed work on props — just like my Overthruster. Mary agreed to paint it for me, and I excitedly shipped it off to her. She warned me that it might take her awhile to complete, due to all over the other projects she had on her plate. (Like building this amazing Fuzzy puppet to help John Scalzi promote the release of his awesome novel Fuzzy Nation.)
That was a few months ago, and I've been waiting for my completed Overthruster's return ever since. Then, earlier this week, the day before my novel's release date, this arrived on my doorstep:
It's hard to describe the immense geek joy I felt when I first held my completed Oscillation Overthruster. I am quite possibly the biggest Buckaroo Banzai fan on the planet, and the plot of the entire movie centers around Dr. Banzai's Overthruster. I now possessed one of the most accurate Overthruster replicas in the world. I spent quite a long time admiring it.
Here's a photo of my Oscillation Overthruster sitting atop Mary's fantastic Nebula-award-nominated debut novel Shades of Milk and Honey. (It's often described as sort of a cross between Pride and Prejudice and Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, and I enjoyed it immensely. If the notion of Jane Austen writing a fantasy novel sounds intriguing to you, you should definitely check it out!)
Thanks for doing such a beautiful job, Mary. I'm going to treasure my Oscillation Overthruster forever. And once I find someone to build me a motorized gimbal mount for it, it will sit right next to my Flux Capacitor, allowing my DeLorean to travel through time and solid matter. (Theoretically.)
Stay tuned. Tomorrow, I'm going to explain how I obtained an array Ghostbusting equipment, just in time for my book tour!