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Bran Hambric

First Art from Bran Hambric: The Farfield Curse

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I am very pleased to present the first piece of completed artwork from Bran Hambric: The Farfield Curse:


Gnome by Brandon Dorman; the note courtesy of Photoshop ๐Ÿ˜€

As almost anyone can probably tell, this is a gnome. In fact, it is exactly the way I imagine the gnomes in my world, realized perfectly by illustrative genius Brandon Dorman. This gnome’s got the face, the beard, the eyes: even the perfectly pointed, red conical hat!

While this gnome will most likely not appear on the cover of the book (in fact, I’m fairly certain it won’t) it could be anywhere else, like on the back or the spine, or maybe even inside. Again, this is NOT THE COVER OF THE BOOK, but it’s a wonderful piece of spot art nonetheless!

And as for other big things happening…I think everyone might want to check out right about now ๐Ÿ˜€

Question for the comments: What do you think of the gnome art from Brandon Dorman?

Bran Hambric Art…Coming Soon

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Finally, the first piece of official art from Bran Hambric: The Farfield Curse has come in from illustrative genius Brandon Dorman! This is NOT the cover, although that is coming very soon (I’ve already seen the drafts, and it is awesome!). But, as anyone who has read the preview chapters has probably already guessed, the Thing That Will Be Revealed On April 11 is quite important ๐Ÿ˜€

Copyediting! and Stuff

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Today I returned from school to find that my publishers have finally completed the copyedits for Bran Hambric: The Farfield Curse! In publishing, a copyeditor reads a manuscript even deeper than a normal editor does, checking for everything from consistency mistakes to style errors all the way to the gritty commas and exclamation points (of which I had many). A copyeditor also helps me make sure that everything lines up perfectly, and really adds the final bit of polish to the book before it goes off to the printers:

Visualization for what Copyedits do

Visualization for what Copyedits do

So, as today is Friday, and these edits are due on Monday, I am barricading myself in my apartment with the Lemony Snicket soundtrack, as much Anberlin as one soul can take, and all 115,000 words of my book. My goal: to attack it with as much ferocity as I can muster whilst living off microwave Mexican food and macaroni for two days and three nights. My editors left no stone unturned, as evidenced:

Copyedits for The Farfield Curse

Copyedits for The Farfield Curse

Each red marking is from one editor, and each blue marking is from another. I have two days to read and approve each edit — and the photo above is just two pages out of nearly 400! (ADDED: It should be noted, however, that every single quotation mark in this entire novel had to be changed to a different style, so the majority of those marks above are from that!)

It’s actually one of the most important steps in this process. A copyeditor can’t even change anything in the story, but they correct so many tiny mistakes that even after years of my editing, most of the manuscript looks like the two pages above! I have to approve or reject each change to make absolutely sure that everything stays exactly the way I intended when I wrote the book.

In OTHER news, my friend Kaza Kingsley has her first two Erec Rex books being re-released on April 9! Kaza and I met just after I signed with my agent, and I saw her book EREC REX: THE DRAGON’S EYE at a local bookstore and decided on random to write to her. She replied to my email, and we became good friends over the internets (she later got me as the designer for her book’s official website!). By amazing chance, she later signed with my literary agent without even knowing, and he sold her series to Simon & Schuster for re-release. If you like books with epic quests and boy heroes and dragons, you should definitely check her books out next week!

By the way, I had to turn in another project for my photography class today! The assigned concept was to show motion with shutter speed, either by freezing it or by having a little bit of blur. Tell me what you think of these (click to see them bigger):


Galleys for The Farfield Curse!

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The first printed copies of my book are finally here!

Before anyone comments that a plain white cover is very boring, I shall explain. This is not the actual book yet, but what are called bound galleys. As a cheat sheet:

ARC‘s: Advance Reader Copies, sent to Special Peoples before a book comes out.

BOUND GALLEYS: an advance Advance Reader Copy, sent to Really Special People even longer before a book comes out.

WHODUNNIT: what a publisher says when a Bound Galley mysteriously goes missing, coincidentally just after the author receives them in the mail.

The bound galleys are basically just printings of the book, double-spaced, with a softcover wrapped around it and the title slapped on. Even the chapter titles are in a plain, tiny, boring font: much unlike how the finished book will appear!

This, however, marks the first ever edition ofย  The Farfield Curse to be printed by Sourcebooks, albeit a very small and very unedited version. This also means that things are truly, finally starting to move faster in the preparations for the release. I can’t even begin to describe the huge stuff that my publishers are planning for this release, and it’s getting to be so exciting. I will say that April will be a very big month for everyone who has waited all this time, especially me.

April will also be a very big month for everyone who has waited to see the cover art. And that is all I shall say on that for now ๐Ÿ˜€

Meeting The Publishers [Video]

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Here’s a video I made while in Illinois meeting my publishers, about the trip and the awesome, hi-tech hotel room that had me never wanting to leave ๐Ÿ˜€

Brandon Dorman Will Illustrate The Farfield Curse

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Brandon Dorman, the award winning illustrator of SAVVY and FABLEHAVEN, has signed on to illustrate the upcoming novel BRAN HAMBRIC: THE FARFIELD CURSE, by Kaleb Nation. Dorman’s cover art for SAVVY by Ingrid Law was chosen as the ” “favorite book jacketย of 2008” by Publisher’s Weekly. His previous works also include covers for the FARWORLD and GOOSEBUMPS series.

THE FARFIELD CURSE is the first in a new series of books by Kaleb Nation. In THE FARFIELD CURSE, a boy named Bran Hambric discovers he is at the center of a plot that started years before he was even born: the plot of a deadly curse his mother created that her former masters are now hunting for him to complete. The novel is set to release in stores Fall of 2009 from Sourcebook Jabberwocky.

Kaleb Nation began writing THE FARFIELD CURSE when he was fourteen years old. Now 20, he attends college in Texas and blogs regularly at THE FARFIELD CURSE is his debut novel.

More info on the illustrator can be found at More info on Bran Hambric can be found at


I can’t even begin to say how long I’ve waited to announce this!

Here is how it happened. A month or two ago, I emailed my editor the names of two illustrators I really liked, hoping that he would take a look and consider them doing the cover. He wrote back saying they were already far ahead of me, and were in talks with my top pick for the illustrator before he even got my message! So in the end, and through wonderful fate, my publishers signed on my dream illustrator without even knowing.

Readers of my blog might recall me listing some of my favorite covers months ago, and it turns out that Brandon did one of them:




His artwork is stunningly colorful, and I’m certain he will do a wonderful job for The Farfield Curse! This also means that Brandon will most likely do the entire series: just like Brett Helquist did all the Lemony Snicket books, and Mary GrandPre did all the Harry Potter’s, it looks as if Brandon will be the illustrator for Bran Hambric!

He has already finished the early draft sketches of the cover art, one of which will turn into the final cover for the book. I doubt it will be any longer than 3 months (and perhaps, drastically shorter) before the cover is finally ready!

Question for the comments: What do you think of Brandon Dorman’s art? Do you think he’ll do well for the Bran Hambric cover?

3-3-09: Six Years After The Idea

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Today is the third day of the third month: and exactly six years ago, I had an idea that changed my life.

The photos above represent bits and pieces of those six years — from the first idea, to plotting the story, to the various titles, to the deal — and my first early steps in writing. Now, in about six months, the book will finally be out. When I first started on this story, I had no way of foreseeing that it would actually work out, and I would finish it. Now, I’m happy that I finally did.

Later this evening, I will be announcing the first bit of major news regarding The Farfield Curse. I plan to have it up here by 7 PM CST, barring any sudden distraction that comes up (I will Twitter the news immediately when it is up, so you’ll know). In the words of my project editor: Happy Branniversary!

The Box In The Bookstore [Music]

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NOTE: For two weeks, you can download this song for free. Click the link below the preview!

I always liked making songs that sounded somewhat mysterious, but as it happened most of music I’ve made so far has been slow and happy (besides the Prologue song on all the websites). On Saturday I had some free time, so I sat down with a specific part of The Farfield Curse in mind, and tried to set that part of the book to music — and surprisingly enough, the song came out all in a few hours.

In the beginning of The Farfield Curse, Bran is found locked in a vault with no memory of who he is. Years later, when he is 14, he is nearly kidnapped by someone who knows far too much about him, and he realizes there is something dark in his past he hasn’t yet discovered. Searching for the truth leads him to a bookstore, where he discovers something hidden amongst the very townspeople who try so hard to outlaw magic. This song represents the part in the book where Bran first begins to realize how big of a thing he is getting himself into: and how dark and sinister his past could be.

The Box In The Bookstore December 2008
ALBUM: Bran Hambric: The Farfield Curse [Official Soundtrack]
ARTIST: Kaleb Nation
STYLE: Classical/Soundtrack
LENGTH: 2:33

If you like it there are plenty more on my music page (also, I have another one coming soon, so maybe subscribe in the sidebar or check back for that one). Also, check out the Bran Hambric music Myspace and as usual, if you want preview chapters, email me or check out for more info on the book.

For the comments: What do you think of this song? Does it seem to portray what I was trying to show?