Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Countdown to Turkey Day with The Knight Agency: David Mack

UPDATE: The winner of a book by David Mack is Alim S. Gafar. Congrats! Please email your physical addy to Contests(AT)

We have an awesome post from STAR TREK TYPHON PACT: ZERO SUM GAME author David Mack, who's talking about what he's most grateful for this year below. But before we dive in, I wanted to stick in a plug for our chat with N.K. Jemisin, fantasy author of THE HUNDRED THOUSAND KINGDOMS and THE BROKEN KINGDOMS this Thursday, November 18th at 9pm ET. Find out more info on the chat in our sidebar ad featuing the author or in this post.

And without further ado, take it away David! Remember to leave a comment to win. The prize will be the winner's choice of either STAR TREK TYPHON PACT: ZERO SUM GAME, VANGUARD: PRECIPICE or THE 4400: PROMISES BROKEN. The winner will be announed in this post tomorrow morning. 

On Being Thankful

It’s easy to be thankful when our circumstances are good, but it’s even more important to remember to be thankful when they are not. This is an idea that’s been much on mind this year as Thanksgiving approaches.

I won’t bore you with specifics, but I’ll confide that it’s been a difficult year for me, my family, and my friends. There have been professional disappointments and financial difficulties, deaths in the family and serious medical crises that have changed our status quo, and numerous small moments that add up to a dispiriting year. It is one of my greatest personal shortcomings that, at times such as this, I tend to focus on the negative and blind myself to all that is right and good.

The question most of us are asked to consider at this time of year is, “What are we most thankful for?” In my case, the question is not for what am I thankful, but for whom.

I am thankful for my wife, Kara. She is my compass, the one who tells me whether I’m on course or steering off the map into a sea of dragons. She sees through my strange habits and gloomy moods and reminds me to stop being a writer every once in a while so that I can just be me.

I am thankful for my parents and for my brother and his family, who all continue to be my biggest fans. They celebrate my successes and sympathize when life deals me lousy cards.

I am thankful for my in-laws. Their generosity, kindness, and love of life makes every visit with them something to anticipate with excitement and remember with fondness.

I am thankful for my friends, who counsel me when I need advice, share the small moments of fun that break up life’s monotony, and remind me that I’m not as great as my best reviews or as bad as my worst. In particular, I am grateful for Glenn, who is my voice of reason and occasional source of ideas; for Brandy and Peter, who share their love and knowledge of wine; for Keith, who can always make me laugh; for Alan, who reminds me that creation is supposed to be fun; for Emily, who brightens rooms with her smile; for Brenda & Rob and Vanessa & Eric, for never failing to surprise, amaze, and impress me; for Marco, who helps me shape dreams into something just this side of real; for Margaret, who shows no end of faith in my abilities; for Dayton and Kevin, who have become more like brothers to me than collaborators; and for Aaron & Jen, and Dave, and Mike, and so many others who remind me my life has a cast of thousands.

I am thankful that I had eighteen years of companionship with my beloved cat Ripley, who passed away this fall after a brief and terrible struggle with cancer; I am thankful that our cat Puck is healthy; and I am grateful for our friends Amy and Paul, who rescued a beautiful stray kitten from a dumpster behind a strip mall in Houston, paid for veterinary care to nurse the kitten back to health, and at their own expense brought that adorable creature to New York City so that my wife and I could adopt her and name her Freddie (actually, her name is Winifred, but we only call her that when she misbehaves).

I am thankful that, despite not having had the kind of year for which I had hoped, I still get to work from home, writing for a living. As a boy, this was the life I dreamed of, and thanks to my wife’s unwavering support, it is now my reality.

I am thankful for every fan e-mail I receive, for every reader who is affected enough by my words that he or she feels motivated to write to me and share their feelings and opinions. I’m grateful for every fan who asks me to sign a book or a comic.

I’m grateful to the fine folks at BOOM! Studios—especially Ian, Matt, and Chip—as well as Farscape creator Rockne S. O’Bannon, for letting me script the eight-issue limited series Farscape: Scorpius.

I am grateful that my agent, Lucienne, still believes in my potential as a writer.

I am grateful that my body has not yet completely fallen to pieces (despite a number of prominent malfunctions) as I start my slow slide into middle age.

I am thankful for my wife’s cooking, for good wine, for a world filled with ephemeral moments of beauty, for random acts of kindness, and for flashes of inspiration that make me ache to return to my keyboard and set myself back to work.

I am grateful that there are so many more people and things I could write about, but that space limitations prohibit me from listing them all here.

As I reflect on how rich my life is in family and friends, it occurs to me that the most important reason for us all to be thankful is that it gives us hope. Focusing on the things that we treasure and that make our lives worth living is how we find the courage to weather Fate’s fierce storms.

Here’s hoping Fortune smiles on us all in the year to come!

Visit David's official website, friend him on Facebook and/or follow him on Twitter @DavidAlanMack.

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Blogger Deidre Knight said...

A lovely post, David, and such a good reminder of the importance of staying grateful. Here's hoping that your 2011 is a lovely, inspiring, healthy year for you and your family. :) Deidre

Wednesday, November 17, 2010 at 11:24:00 AM EST  
Anonymous Lucienne Diver said...

Dave, this was beautiful. I'm thankful for you and for all of my authors as well. You make my job inspirational. (Of course, I had to grin about Glenn being the voice of reason.)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010 at 11:40:00 AM EST  
Anonymous David Mack said...

Lucienne & Deidre - thanks for all you've done for me this year. May the holidays and the coming new year bring you health, success, and happiness.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010 at 3:49:00 PM EST  
Blogger Amy Sisson said...

What a lovely post! I enjoyed every word (and one paragraph in particular!).

Wednesday, November 17, 2010 at 6:02:00 PM EST  
Blogger Alan Kistler said...

And a happy thanks to you as well, brother. Let's get together after the holiday and bang out some ideas.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010 at 8:50:00 PM EST  
Blogger Alim S. Gafar said...


So is the gruff exterior all show? Now I know you're just a softee after all. Wonderful sentiments and well expressed. I'm sorry to hear how rough it's been; I think you have the right attitude, and it will see you through.

Happy Thanksgiving, Dave.

Thursday, November 18, 2010 at 12:31:00 AM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you Dave! We'll be seeing a whole lot more of each other soon.

Sunday, November 21, 2010 at 12:46:00 AM EST  
Anonymous Tim Farmer said...

Tim Farmer checking in from

Tuesday, November 30, 2010 at 8:01:00 AM EST  
Blogger Unknown said...

This is my entry for the contest///Thanks very much///
Robert Ryan

Tuesday, November 30, 2010 at 8:06:00 AM EST  
Anonymous said...

Danny Johnson

Tuesday, November 30, 2010 at 8:06:00 AM EST  
Blogger Lisa said...

Contest: Lisa Kelleher – I want adolescents to read my novel, identify w/it, and choose to live

Tuesday, November 30, 2010 at 8:14:00 AM EST  

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