I love my readers too much

I hate airports.

I love flying, though. I mean, I stare out the window and marvel and think of all the dreamers in history who wanted to soar like a bird and see the earth from above, and here I am doing it with a pack of peanuts and a plastic cup of room temperature water. It’s a miracle. And we groan about it.

That’s because airports suck. Security sucks. The queues suck. Customs and Immigrations . . . I LOVE you guys! Love you so much. You’re the best. Just passing through!

Ahem. So here I am in London, with a 6 hour layover in Heathrow after a 12-hour flight from South Africa, and what do I do? I go through Customs and Immigration, and put myself back outside of that sacred shoe-wearing, bottled-water-having halo of airport security, knowing I’ll have to pass through again. All to sign a single reader’s book.

When I get to Florida in 17 hours, I’m facing an even more monumental task: Sorting, signing, packing, and shipping over 1,200 items to over 800 individual addresses.

And you know what? I don’t hesitate to say “yes.” Because in aggregate, all your little decisions to buy my stories has had a bigger impact on me than I’ll ever have on another human being. And it isn’t even close.

You all sent me around the world for three years, signing books on six continents, two dozen countries, and hundreds of cities. You let me stay at home and write with my dog, so she could get three or four or twelve walks around the neighborhood. You made my mother almost forget about the fact that I still haven’t finished college. And you made sure that the boat I sail around the world on (’cause it was happening no matter what) is less liable to get me killed.

I love you all.

Especially you, Customs! And you, Immigrations!

21 responses to “I love my readers too much”

  1. Love WOOL ,your reader in Shanghai,China!!

    And I hate airports except dutyfree shops!

  2. Caroline Benton Avatar
    Caroline Benton

    …and you’re WORTH all of my drops in your bucket!! Not only because you spin a great tale, but for ALL of these little efforts. These things matter to a modern reader. Our relationships outside of the purchase influence the purchase and build the connection to the next…
    Thank you for always making time for us and for sharing all of your journeys and thoughts between works.

  3. You are good to your fans…

    I like flying and hate airports, too, for all the reasons you cite, plus: On our honeymoon, we had to sleep overnight in the Athens airport, because we were not told when we bought our charter tickets (New York to Istanbul, via Athens) that they required us to stay in Greece three days. But they wouldn’t give my husband a visa to leave the airport (because he is a Turk).

    But things could have been worse for us; they certainly were for other travellers. A week later, the area where we’d slept in that airport was blown up by terrorists.

  4. My wife has rainbow-coloured hair; we get stopped ALL THE TIME.
    Customs officials love us… or hate us… or love to hate us.
    And we travel for a living.
    So, you know, I feel your pain.
    Well, parts of me do…

  5. We love you too, Hugh! Never have I met a more generous author and all around decent human being! You’ve gotten all this love from your readers because you gave it to us first. You wrote for the love of writing and the love of reading, and your joy shows through in everything you write. Thank you, Hugh, Thank you,

  6. you teach the rest of us how to do it

  7. I always, always try for a window seat. Couldn’t survive a long flight not looking out and marveling at Earth.

    Hugh, thank you for everything you do. Love you right back.

  8. This…this is why you’re my hero.

  9. After a 12 hour flight from Argentina with my husband and our two young kids, the four of us sick with something, we looked miserable. Travel with two sick, crying kids and everyone will give you a pass, even customs. They barely checked our four luggages :-D

  10. Never underestimate what you’ve done for us.

  11. I wish you save travels on planes and eventually boats … and also no paper cuts or hand cramps. :)

    I can barely get through sending out cards around the holidays, so I cannot fathom the job ahead of you. Thank you for doing this.

  12. Such a cool and fun post ♥♥♥
    Can’t wait to get my surprise goodies! ;)

  13. There are people who will be remembered for who they were. There are those who will be remembered for what they accomplished. Finally. there will be those who will be remembered because they took the time to care – not only for themselves, but for their work, and for those around them, and in doing so, changed the world. Hugh C. Howey is and will be one of the latter. Thank you.

  14. Phyllis Humphrey Avatar
    Phyllis Humphrey

    You’re a hero t o me too. For Data Guy and Author Earnings. For your articles and blogs that give so much valuable information and insights into what’s important. For making writing success look possible in spite of the hard work involved. And for being a caring, inspiring and down-to-earth person. Thank you.

  15. Love your work! Congrats on all your success! I found Wool when it only had a thousand or so 5 star reviews on Amazon. Been a fan ever since. A few of those 1200 items should be mine. Can’t wait to see what I get!!!

  16. No Hugh, don’t thank us. We need to thank you.
    Not only have you delivered a wide array of imaginative stories to enjoy at rock bottom prices, You’ve been a huge inspiration to me personally. And I’m sure to many others.

    The $50 or so I’ve spent on your various books has been paid back a hundred-fold. You inspired my writing, you selflessly shared your knowledge about ebooks and indesign. Your posts about lacing up your shoes to jump start your motivation has come back to me many times and helped me get going on various things. Your positivity is infectious.

    I wouldn’t have finished my illustrated 25k word kids book without you, and I’m putting the finishing touches on a 10k sci-fi short story right now.

    You’ve given far more than you’ve received.


    Michael Blackbourn

    my kids book that wouldn’t exist without your trailblazing: http://www.cindercast.com

  17. Your generosity of spirit reminds me of what people go into the arts for to share their gifts, to tell stories that celebrate the human condition and to generate a fictional world where we can reflect on our own place in this world.

  18. We love you too man. Fan for life from Utah here. I’ve got at least 5 family members or friends hooked on you and will continue to do so! I’m slowly making my way through your entire collection. I started with Wool, and am finishing with Molly Fyde. On a side note. Am I the only one who pictures a Glemot to have the body of a Wookie, with the head of an Ewok?

  19. We don’t feel bad for you at all, but nice try Hugh! ;-)

    Have a safe onward flight!

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