Tuesday, February 21, 2006

MC Giveaway

It's time to nail you guys with some books again. In fact, I think I'll declare this officially Book Tyranny week and do a giveaway every day. It will keep me from ranting.

What, you're going to complain? I'm menopausal here.

First up for discussion: humans with super powers. Despite the bad rep it's gotten in the movies (i.e. The Invisible Man, The Hollow Man, Predator), invisibility has always fascinated me. I mean, think about it. Fashion, no longer a problem. You could be fat and no one would care. You could see your ex, but they'd never see you or the obscene hand gestures you make in their direction. Or you could walk around town naked, freak out people at seances, cut to the front of the line for everything (who's going to complain?) or skip a bath for two months . . . well, maybe not that last part. But suffering through bad hair days or being forced to wear makeup and panty hose and shoes with heels? Ha. Over with.

The downside would be I'd never be able to shop in the grocery store again. Those People In a Terrible Hurry, of which ten thousand seem to have recently moved to our town, can see me perfectly well now, and still they try to run me down with their carts while they're rushing to pick up their Cocoa Puffs and Preparation H. Imagine if I were really invisible. I'd never make it alive through the cookie aisle.

If you could have any super power you wanted, what would it be? Answer that question in the comments to this post by midnight EST on Wednesday, 2/22/06. I'll draw four* names from all those who participate and send the winners an unsigned copy of Moon Called by Patricia Briggs. Winners will be announced here by noon EST on Thursday, 2/23/06. Giveaway open to everyone on the planet, even if you've won something at PBW in the past.

*Fine print: Yes, really only winners four this time; that's all the spare copies I have. Someday when I'm a (cough) multi-millionaire, then I'll hit everyone with freebies every time.


  1. Some kind of heal-all touch would be good, although anyone with superpowers should expect to be ripped apart in a lab to find out WHY they're super.

  2. Like Mr Incredible, I think, but with my own personality. I like the idea of being virtually indestructible. Look out bad guys!

  3. Psychokinesis...I wouldn't have to worry about my house keys, or the cars that take up more than their fare space of street parking, or falling on ice. Yup, psychokinesis would be the coolest!

  4. The ability to shapeshift. :)

  5. I'm going to choose teleportation. I have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, which makes going out often a major drama, so being able simply to arrive where I wanted to go would mean I got out of the house a lot more.

  6. I'd like to be able to see through BS at 100 yards. ;) Immensely practical to my mind.

  7. I'd like to wriggle my nose like Samantha and get all the housework done. Sigh.

  8. I would be able to *see* in my dreams. I would go to sleep and see the past and the future. I would go places in the past and places in the future. To me that would be the perfect super power.

  9. I think I'd like to have teleportation (myself and other things). I could get to work instantly, I could get the pre-schooler from daycare instantly.

    All that lost travel time regained!

  10. Anonymous4:52 AM

    Hmm ... I'm going to go with a fairly vanilla power, flight, because of how much it would speed up transportation (altitude enhances speed). And because it would be really cool.

  11. Predator... bad rep? Sacrilege!

    I'd go with hydrokinesis. Given that just about any organic thing on the planet is at least 70% water, and there's a shitload of the stuff loose on the surface and in the air, I can see a lot of applications for that sort of thing.

    And I would have won all those schoolboy "see how high up the wall you can piss" contests as a child.

  12. Anonymous5:53 AM

    After years of public transport, I want teleportation. Handy for all those times when traffic's at a standstill and I'm running late - and think of the savings on fuel/transport costs!

  13. Anonymous6:40 AM

    The ability to manipulate time - to separate time for me and those with me from that for the rest of the world. This would have lots of useful applications - fast forwarding through boring meetings, family gatherings, etc; slowing time down when late for the school run, giving a child that bit longer to find its missing possessions; making holidays last a bit longer; extending the eating time for a piece of good chocolate; getting household chores over with faster; and, of course, time travel. I don't feel any urge to visit the future, really, but the past - to see my ancestors, see the Bronze Age barrow down the road when it was an active site, see London 400 years ago - how could I choose?!

  14. teleportation myself and other things - I thought I would be the only person who would want this power. Because I have panic attacks, just the drive time to a place can wreak havoc on my nerves. To be able to get to my friends house immediately and zip back to my house if I start to feel unwell? Priceless. Being able to use your own bathroom or be home if you are homesick - perfect.

    I'm also never going to fly on a plane so it would be nice to see the whole world without having to worry about how I'm going to get there.

    Loved this question.


  15. I'm with Alison--I'd like the ability to manipulate time. Specifically I'd like to be able to go back in time and spend a day with my dad who died when I was small. I'd also like to relive the day I made bread for my new boyfriend (now my husband) so when he made his infamous, "gee I don't like raisin bread" comment I could make an anatomically impossible suggestion back.

  16. Anonymous7:52 AM

    I'd like to be a telekinetic. The idea of being able to move a 300-lb object without using any hands is pretty cool.

    Not that I'd be able to move a 300-lb object WITH my hands in the first place, which makes telekinesis all the more attractive.

  17. Time Traveling. When watching/reading about any thing in future outer space, my first reaction is: "That should be me up there!".

  18. Anonymous8:10 AM

    I'd like the ability to be able to absorb someone's skills/knowledge just by brushing up against them. (Then I'd shake hands with someone who could actually cook.)

  19. Anonymous8:42 AM

    Telekinesis through space and time, fer shure! and I'm kind of amazed by how many of us want it...who knew?

  20. Jedi Mind Tricks. "You want to give Kevin a free book...[waves slowly hand in front of face]...these are not the droids you're looking for, but giving Kevin a free book will make you happy...[nods knowingly, squinting eyes intently]... now move along and have a nice day."

  21. At this point in my life, I'd like the "Stay Safe" superpower. The kind of power that allows me to keep my daughter (now a toddler with many years of anxiety-inducing years ahead for her mommy) safe from life threatening or psychologically damaging events. Wouldn't that be nice?

  22. Anonymous9:00 AM

    I'd like to say I'd choose something cool like Insta-Meal Power! or being able to create gas in my gastank, but I'll just go with the ability to be happy.

  23. Anonymous9:04 AM

    I'm going to have to go with teleportation. Maybe then I wouldn't be late for work all the time.

  24. oh man, that's a tough one. I already have moon called, and i loved it, so I don't want to enter the contest, but if i could have ANY power....

    well, i'd like foresight to be as clear as hindsight. don't know if that means being precog... dont' want to know EVERYTHING that's gonna happen, but it's the only thing I think that wouldn't have as many downsides as ups.

    The invisible thing might be cool, though, so long as i can control it and go back and forth when i want.

  25. I'd like to be an empath, to be able to feel what others are feeling. I think it would be a powerful, useful skill to have. I'd use my superpower for only good, of course ;)

  26. I would love superspeed, like the Flash. I could get so much done in one day, and I would never need a bus or a car again. I'd just hit the sidewalk out front and run run run.

  27. I'd like to be able to grant wishes. Small ones thought. I couldn't handle the world peace thing, I don't think anyone could solve that problem.

    But small wishes would be nice. Like being able to grant kids who wish to be apart of the team or little old ladies who need a kitty cat.

    Hmm... that gives me an idea.

  28. Healing by touch. I know a lot of people that have terminal cancer right now (closest is my husband's uncle, less than three months to live).

  29. Anonymous9:46 AM

    I'd like to be pyrokinetic. I've wanted to be able to cause things to spontaneously burst into flame ever since I read Stephen King's Firestarter. I would however like to avoid the nut jobs at some bizarre government agency.

  30. Anonymous9:56 AM

    I'd love to be able to shapeshift into any animal of my choice, and be able to also do partial animal shifts. That way I could have hightened senses, extra strength or speed, while still maintaining human form. I think if I could do that, there isn't anything I couldn't accomplish. My 2nd choice would be to have the ability to heal myself and others...

    Thanks for the chance to win a book, PBW!


  31. What a difficult choice... shapeshifting into whatever suited my fancy would be a splendid gift!

    On the other hand, if I could fly around the galaxy in my human body without any needed survival gear and go anywhere in space at any speed, that would be pretty righteous! Yes, space-time travel would be my superpower of choice!

    Or perhaps to be a Q, and completely omnipotent (without the added arrogance, of course)! :)

  32. What a fun question! I'd love to be able to be in two places at once. That way one of me could be at work and the other me could be at home writing. One of me can stay home this summer and go to DH's high school reunion with him while the other goes to RWA National conference. One me can write in the evenings while the other me spends time with family or watches all the TV I don't watch now... gee do you see a common thread here?

  33. Anonymous10:57 AM

    Teleportation: no question. I would never have to miss a loved one again! And free travel is irresistable.

    (BTW, please don't enter me in the contest: I bought a copy of Moon Called on your recommendation. Excellent book.)

  34. Anonymous11:42 AM

    I'm going to go with the ability to control other people's minds through telepathy. Covers invisibility ("You don't see me") and that supremely frustrating problem of people not seeing things your way. Things could quickly spiral out of control, though...

  35. Anonymous11:47 AM

    I would love to have the ability to breathe underwater. I've always loved being in the water (I was born under Pisces). Once, when I was about four, I slipped through an innertube in a lake. I hit the soft muddy floor, surrounded by the luminous green water, and saw a shadow of another little girl. I waved to her furiously and then realized I was going to need to take a breath. I tried of course to clasp my fingers over my mouth and breathe in, and kick up off the ground, but I couldn't swim and sank back down.
    My father rescued me -- it took probably less than 10 seconds, but the memory seems to take at least a half hour.

  36. Anonymous11:53 AM

    Alison Kent wrote: ...do you have a list of your StarDoc titles in order anywhere?

    No, and most of the SF sites list them inaccurately, so here's the list:

    StarDoc SF series:
    1. StarDoc January 2000 Roc SF/F ISBN# 0451457730
    2. Beyond Varallan July 2000 Roc SF/F ISBN# 0451457935
    3. Endurance January 2001 Roc SF/F ISBN# 0451458141
    4. Shockball August 2001 Roc SF/F ISBN# 0451458559
    5. Eternity Row September 2002 Roc SF/F ISBN# 0451458915
    6. Rebel Ice January 3, 2006 Roc SF/F ISBN# 0451460626
    7. Plague of Memory (to be released January 2007)

    Blade Dancer is a SF Standalone set in the StarDoc universe, as are Bio Rescue and its sequel, Afterburn.

  37. Anonymous12:03 PM

    The ability to win the lottery! ;o)


  38. Anonymous12:32 PM

    While I have number of ideas - healing, photographic reflexes, multiplied learning capabilities, Chi-abilities, body-reading abilities and the like - they all fall before my dream of flying. Only healing comes close.

    Every now and then, I dream of actually flying by myself. It's hard to actually get it started in the dream, but once I do I soar, swoop, and dance in the air. It's outrageously liberating and spiritual at the same time - it blows my mind. I've woken up from that dream and been high all day. I've also woken up and burst into tears (yep, crazy) because it wasn't true.

    If I could fly, I'd be in heaven.

    There are practical aspects as well - while it isn't teleportation, the ability to fly at 300+ mph certainly cuts down on travel time to those places I go alone (my martial arts classes, popping in to visit my mother for twenty minutes would be easy). I might actually be able to help people from time to time (I'd really like to help people, which is why healing comes in a very close second).

    But the ability to simply hover in the air and stare out over the ocean during a sunset, to rocket through the Rockies, to dance with a flock of sparrows and pace eagles soaring high - that fires me up.

    If I were an actual 'crime fighter', I'd go for something different, but for me, who I am now? Flying. Absolutely.

  39. Anonymous12:32 PM

    Whoops - that one, about flying, is by Ted MacKinnon. Apologies.

  40. Anonymous12:40 PM

    I'd have to say instant recall of a perfectly accurate memory of my whole life. (Which would create some narratively interesting downsides, I know.)

    BTW, if you are into Invisible Man stories, you must rent AMAZON WOMEN ON THE MOON, which has a hilarious Invisible Man spoof featuring Ed Begley, Jr.

  41. The ability to vaporize the cell phone in the hand of Yappy McBadDriver.

    Zzzzip. Sizzle.

  42. Pat, better vaporize McBadDriver himself. And his car.

    Hm, I think I'd go for shapeshifting. Time travel might be interesting, too, but much as I like to write about the Roman Empire and Medieaval times, I doubt I'd really like to live there. :)

    lovely idea, that book giveaway week. But do post that romance rant some time, please. ;-)

  43. I suppose I really have to pick just one? I want to be able to grant wishes. And I don't want to be limited to one or three wishes. But no biggies like world peace. I'm not interested in solving the whole world's problems, just those in my little corner of it. :)

  44. Anonymous1:33 PM

    I'd want the power to hurl tall buildings with a single glance. Look! Up in the sky! It's a bird! It's a plane! No, it's the Empire State Building being hurled at [ insert favorite political figure here ]


  45. Telekinesis. I wouldn't have to worry about lifting something heavy or hurting someone while lifting them.

    Better yet, the ability to look at and eat yummy things *and* stay fit and trim.

  46. Anonymous3:16 PM

    Mmmm. Telekinesis would also be my first choice. There's so many awesome things that a person could do with that. My second choice would be some kind of healing ability, not only for myself but for others.

  47. Anonymous3:21 PM

    Quite a few people have gone for telekinesis, as it would be cool to be able to shift 100lb objects with your mind.

    I'm going to go for what I call "blubberkinesis" - the ability to shift 100lbs off my stomach just by thinking about it! 8-)


  48. Anonymous3:52 PM

    Oh, I guess I'd have to choose the time travel power...I am a history fanatic and it would scratch a lot of itches

    And btw, since I am the mother of two preschoolers I have ALREADY mastered the power of being invisible :)

    Thanks pbw for the contest

    Michele L

  49. For me, I'd have to go with the power to heal, whether physical, emotional or mental.

    I fantasized for years that I could heal my brother's Cerebral Palsy by making birthday wishes and wishes on stars and wishes when I lost an eyelash [plucked them out on purpose a few times] or when the charm on my necklace worked its way around to the clasp.

    Literally hundreds of wishes for one thing.

    Jeremi still has CP, but when I made my wishes, I used these words, "I wish Jeremi could walk, talk, and use his hands." Over the years, technology has given him an electric wheelchair, a Pathfinder which not only allows him to speak, but enables him to control various appliances in his apartment. So, technically, all those wishes came true, just not in the way I'd hoped.

    So yeah, I'd still have to go with the ability to heal.

  50. The ability to run on only an hour of sleep per day, so I'd have time to get everything done:-P

  51. I think I would have to choose teleportation. Then I could spend more time with my family and less time commuting. And, of course, popping over to Hawaii or somewhere else warm whenever my job got too stressful is mighty appealing. Is that too selfish?

  52. I'm boring, I just want to be able to fly. I've done it in my dreams and it's wicked.

  53. To see the future, particularly the stock market. So I can become a millionaire and buy all the books I want to, particularly yours ;-)

  54. That's easy. The Legion of Superheroes had a hero named Triplicate Girl (later Duplicate Girl) who could split herself and literally be in more than one place at a time. That's what I want!

  55. Flying. It sounds both exciting and serene. If I could have any superpower, I'd want to be able to fly.

  56. The ability to absorb the contents of a book just by sleeping on it. I once read about a guy who could do that, apparently - I'm just thinking all the trouble that would save me when exams come around.

  57. Anonymous1:43 PM

    I would like the Instant Cleaning/Household Chores Be Done- SuperPower. They're time consuming and I'd rather be reading a good book or playing with the kids.