Two years ago I was talking with the brilliant and charming Mary Robinette Kowal at DragonCon about my upcoming novel (The Desert of Souls, not The Bones of the Old Ones, which wasn’t even written yet) and she happened to mention that another fellow had been writing stories about a duo of Arabian fantasy characters fighting things man was not meant to know. I feigned polite interest, but I knew a sudden chill. That was my thing! Who was this other guy?
Well, it turns out his name is Saladin Ahmed, and at this point you’ve surely heard of him. He’s talented, gracious and damned funny, but I didn’t know any of that two years back. All I knew was a fear that someone was doing my shtick. What I didn’t know is that he’d heard about Howard Andrew Jones in much the same way, with a similar reaction (when we traded stories at ConFusion he mimed the moment of learning about me by shaking his fist at the heavens and cursing my name). We had a good laugh.