Speaking at ASU Phoenix this morning

Yesterday's event at Changing Hands Bookstore in Tempe, AZ was amazing, and I'm sticking around in Phoenix for one more day: this morning, I'll be presenting at ASU's Center for Science and the Imagination at 10:30AM, talking about hacktivism, ethics and the future of the fight for digital rights. Then I'm on the red-eye to NYC for the Tools of Change conference, where I'll be speaking on Feb 12 and 13, and thence to a romantic evening in Cincinnati on Feb 14 for an evening event at Joseph-Beth Booksellers. There's plenty more: here's the whole schedule.

Interview with Rick Kleffel about Homeland

Last week I sat down for an interview with Rick Kleffel at KQED in San Francisco. He's put the whole interview -- a long one! -- up in his Trashotron podcast feed. We talked about Homeland and other things. Rick, as always, was a very astute interviewer.

MP3 link

Letter from a young Homeland reader

As you've no doubt gleaned, I'm on tour with my new novel, Homeland. A lot of people commiserate with me about the grueling pace -- and it is! a new city practically every day and nowhere near enough sleep and continuous interviews and presentations from o-dark hundred to late at night -- but for all that, it's actually something I love. That's because I get to meet readers, especially young readers (I do a lot of school presentations) and readers tell me about how my books have affected them, and it's generally both humbling and delightful.

But every now and again, I hear from a reader whose description of her or his experience with my work leaves me, well, speechless. This is one such letter, from a young man named Brian, who emailed me this morning, and graciously gave me permission to post his letter. I'm posting it to let you know -- and to remind me -- that for all that touring is sometimes a lot of work, the end result is that my books end up in the hands of people for whom they can be revelatory. It's such an awesome responsibility, and such a wonderful one. Thank you, Brian.

I started reading Homeland the day it came out, and finished it the day after. I had it on pre-order on my kindle, which I proceeded to bring with me everywhere for the following two days. I have read Little Brother, For The Win, Pirate Cinema, and Chicken Little. Each one amazed me (though Chicken Little is slightly less related to my point). By the time I got to the last page of Homeland, I was incensed. I didn’t have time to read the afterword, I was going to get started right away!

I looked up TrueCrypt, and was shocked to find it actually existed. Immediately downloaded. I had known about TOR before, but hadn’t thought much about it. My next move was to install it into my TC drive and begin using it. I found out about the CryptoParty movement, and I’m trying to figure out a Party in my hometown.

My point is, your book introduced me to practical cryptography and to a side of the movement for “freedom of people,” as you called it, that I had never before seen.

And then I read the afterword.

Related to my cryptography search, I had recently re-read some of the news articles and documents pertaining to Aaron’s suicide. The moment I saw his name on the afterword, I put the book down and started crying. I’m not normally a person to cry, but I couldn’t take it right then. Slowly, I picked my kindle back up and started reading again. As I read, tears welled in my eyes. I was very moved by your book, but (with all respect), these words from beyond the grave – from a real person beyond the grave – affected me more than any book ever could.

I didn’t know Aaron personally, but even so that passage made me cry. I can’t say I know how you felt, but I can say that I think it would have been hard for me to include his afterword. I’m damn grateful you chose to keep it. It is even more important now. When I read it, I was touched, but I was also pissed. My immediate, gut reaction was that no one has the right to do that to someone. The attacks and case against him were ridiculous, and I hope those who targeted him feel ashamed. My ensuing reaction was to do something, to really get out and do something. What, I’m not quite sure: I don’t know many internet activists, and my hometown isn’t exactly the center of internet activism, but that’s what the internet’s for, isn’t it? The internet lets anyone anywhere join in global movements that impassion them, and now I’m ready to join in a global initiative toward freedom on the internet across the world.

So, to summarize: your book worked. I read the Huffington Post article of an excerpt of their interview with you. Well, I am your ideal kid: I’m 14, here in 2013, and I my reaction was to “rush to a search engine and figure out proxies, free/open operating systems, freedom of information requests, local makerspaces, campaigns for political accountability…the whole package.” (Well, really I’m still working on some of those.)


Coming to Tempe, AZ today on the Homeland tour!

I'm heading to Tempe, AZ today for a 2PM appearance at Changing Hands Bookstore on my tour for Homeland, the sequel to Little Brother. Next I'll be in NYC for the Tools of Change publishing conference, then in Cincinnati for a romantic Feb 14 presentation at Joseph-Beth Booksellers at 7PM. There's plenty more stops on the tour: here's the schedule for the whole odyssey!

Instructables based on Little Brother and Homeland

The awesome people at Instructables have launched a series of HOWTOs based on my novel Homeland, written from the point of view of Marcus, the novel's hero. They previously posted 11 of these for Little Brother, and the new Homeland ones should be kicking off any day. Watch this space!

m1k3y's Instructables

Coming to Salt Lake City today

As you read this, I'll be on a plane heading for Salt Lake City, where I'll be appearing at the Leonardo Science Museum at 2PM with my new novel Homeland. On Sunday, I'll be in Tempe at Changing Hands books, and then on Feb 12 I'll be in NYC for the Tools of Change conference (snow permitting!). There's lots more appearances to come, too! Hope to see you there -- we had a fantastic, standing-room-only time at Borderlands in San Francisco last night!

Mesh wireless inspired by Little Brother

Eric writes:

If the protagonists in the book Little Brother had access to a low-power mesh network, they may have been able to avert the DHS. In reality, mesh networking could help organize protests like what occurred during the Arab Spring--helping citizens to peacefully participate in an effective manner, by leveraging the self-healing and spontaneous nature of mesh networks.

Pinoccios are tiny wireless microcontrollers for makers and DIY enthusiasts. They make it easy to connect physical things to each other and to the web. Pinoccios can connect wirelessly to each other and to the Internet, and with them you can build your own sensor networks, home automation, or UAV and robotics projects.

We also have an Indiegogo campaign going on right now.

Last night in San Francisco

Tonight's my last night in San Francisco on my Homeland tour. I'll be at Borderlands books at 7PM. Tomorrow I'll be at the Leonardo in Salt Lake City; and on Sunday I'll be at Changing Hands in Tempe, AZ. Come on down (and thanks to everyone who came by the Booksmith last night!).

I’ll be in San Francisco tonight and tomorrow

I'm still revving up my tour for Homeland, the sequel to Little Brother, and tonight I'll be at Booksmith in San Francisco. I'm lucky enough to get two days in SFO and tomorrow I'll be at Borderlands, before I head to Salt Lake City for an appearance at The Leonardo on Saturday. From there, it's off to Tempe, AZ for a gig at Changing Hands on Sunday, and then off to many more cities (here's the list). Last night's event in Portland at the Beaverton Powell's was amazing, with more than a hundred lovely folks in attendance, a lively Q&A and the swell atmosphere of one of the world's great bookstores.

Coming to Portland today, San Francisco tomorrow!

Last night, I kicked off the tour for Homeland (the sequel to Little Brother) with an amazing event at the Seattle Public Library, and now I'm hitting the road! I'll be in Portland tonight, at the Powell's in Beaverton at 7PM. Tomorrow I hit San Francisco with a stop at Booksmith on the 7th, then another at Borderlands on the 8th. From there, I'm off to Salt Lake City's Leonardo museum for an event on Feb 9. There's 22 cities in all -- here's the list!

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