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50dragonkid: the author of Eragon

November 18, 2010

Yesterday’s Writer’s Almanac highlighted the birthday of Christopher Paolani.  I always knew he was young, but here’s a clip from this origin story.  Sometimes these crazy road trips pay off!

The first draft took him a year, and revising the first draft took a second year. His family decided to self-publish the book, entitled Eragon, and when it first came out in 2002 they toured the country to promote it. During one year, they showed up at 135 events, book fairs, bookstores, libraries, schools, places where the teenage Paolini would stand behind a table in a medieval costume… If he sold 40 books in the course of eight hours, it felt like a good day. The whole experience was really stressful, since his family was risking all their financial future to promote the book, and the book was not selling… But then the stepson of novelist Carl Hiaasen read the book, loved it, and showed it to Hiaasen, who sent in on to his publishers. Soon, Paolini had huge offers from major U.S. and UK publishers.

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