Saturday, June 28, 2008

“It’s like Being in the Presence of Barbara Streisand!”

“It’s like Being in the Presence of Barbara Streisand!”

That line (from an old Disney World Animation Tour video where Robin Williams meets, and is in awe of, Tinkerbell) sums up how I felt yesterday when I was on a first novel panel with Glen Cook. Glen Cook has been writing since the late sixties, and I was a bit over-awed by his presence on a panel that was otherwise populated with relative newcomers.

I tried to be helpful and tell about my writing journey, but to be honest, I was a little preoccupied listening to advice from the man with forty-some odd books under his belt. It occurs to me that the same thing happened a few times at last year’s Dragon*Con when I first met Peter David and again at Mobicon when I met Jim Butcher. In all three case, the person to whom I was momentarily unable to speak was quite friendly… more than willing to chat… The problem was all in my head.

Which is what leads me to a question:

Has this ever happened to you?

Monday, June 23, 2008

The Almost-Weekly J: J. C. Hutchins

So, as some of you know I got an iPod recently and I’ve blogged about good podcasts, etc, but I haven’t blogged about a podcast book before, because, until recently, I hadn’t listened to one. I have now. The 7th Son Trilogy by J.C. Hutchins. Holy frijoles, guys! This series is all that and a bag of chips. You know those really good podcasts, the ones with the great bed music and the good sound… the ones that make you feel like you're listening to a professional production? 7th Son is that to the Nth degree.

Review: 7th Son Book One: Descent starts out with the assassination of the President of the United States… at the hands of a four year old boy. From there, the books goes into the lives of seven men who have far more in common than they think they do. And it’s very hard to tell you more than that without giving away the goods. You see, when I started listening, in fact, the entire time I listened to the books (starting a few weeks ago), I purposefully avoided any sites related to or mentioning them. I enjoyed the series in a completely unspoiler-ed state and it’s a feeling that I wish on everyone who enjoys a good action-thriller.

If you’re into Clive Cussler, if Tom Clancy is da bomb in your book then get your iPod to or iTunes and start your download. Go ahead. I’ll wait right here.

The download will take awhile and the listening will take longer, but it's a ride that I’m glad I didn’t miss. St. Martin’s Press certainly seems to agree, because they’ll be releasing the trilogy in print format starting in 2009.

For the record, my favorite character was Kilroy 2.0, hands down… and I can’t tell you why. The scene where Kilroy confronts ________, the scene where we find out who _______ is. The scene where we find out that Binary Faerie is __________. The top secret planes. The stuff with the UN. And of course, John Alpha. Dude, the man is evil in the twisted, non-repentant, but strangely comprehensible way that you want a villain to be.

All three books get two thumbs way way up in my book.

Listen now: Buy it when it comes out in print. Support this guy because we really need more novels out of him.


Thursday, June 19, 2008

Countdown to ReVamped

This looks like a good sign to me:

Simon & Schuster just added information about ReVamped (the sequel to Staked) to their website. They list the pub date as March 10, 2009.


Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Holy Guest Blog, Batman!

Hey! Mark Henry over at the League of Reluctant Adults invited me over to guest blog about free beer, porn, and comic books!

Okay… not really, but he did invite me to do a surprise guest blog. It’s about… oh, just run over to the League ( and check it out.

EDIT: Forgot to mention that I'll be giving away a signed copy of Staked there too. Good luck!


Saturday, June 14, 2008

The Belated ConCarolinas Report

In the whirlwind of the last few weekends, I was lucky enough to get to go to Charlotte, North Carolina and attend a pretty darn cool convention.

We set out Thursday morning in the officially unofficial WTF van owned by the mighty Dan & Karen. The WTF van has just enough room for four folks to ride comfortably with all the assorted baggage and copies of the book for sale and WELCOME TO THE VOID t-shirts and it even comes equipped with St. Dan, who drove the whole way, and Navigating Action Karen who made sure that we didn’t get lost (except for that one stretch where they’d covered up all of the road signs - I still don’t know what was up with that?!?).

On the road, I got a chance to finish Personal Demons by Stacia Kane (see the mini-review below) and read most of Heart of Stone by C. E. Murphy.

Until I recently, Charlaine Harris’s Sookie Stackhouse was pretty much the only psychic I was interested in reading books about. This was recently expanded to include Anton Strout’s Simon Canderous from Dead To Me (I’ll be picking up the next book in the series, you can count on that) and now Dr. Megan Chase has joined that list as well. It’s got more romance to it than I usually read, but that didn’t bother me at all. It’s funny, scary… definitely the beginning of a series that I want to keep reading. I’d have to say that my favorite characters were the demonic body guards (Malleus, Maleficarum, and …. The unfortunately named Spud). They filled the same enjoyable niche for me that Nuncio and Guido do in Robert Asprin’s Myth series, without turning Personal Demons into a comedy. Anyone who has read Staked knows that I’m fond of the funny, but I like it not to overwhelm the action and Stacia balanced both wonderfully.

Stacia Kane is a member of the League of Reluctant Adults as are Mark Henry (the author of the zany zombie-fest that is Happy Hour of the Damned) and the aforementioned Anton Strout. I definitely plan of checking out the books of the other “Leaguers” and you should too.

I wasn't on any panels on Friday, so I got to spend some time sitting in on my buddy, Rob Hudson’s, gaming panel. I also got a chance to hang with David Talon author of The Last Guardian of Mosh Caltun and meet fellow Codexian James Maxey (Nobody Gets The Girl, Bitterwood). James invited me to join him on his 13 Dooms panel and the blogging panel. He even forgave me for doing my darnedest to turn the 13 Dooms into The Thirteen Dooms of Scooby-Doo. ;)

Saturday, I got to share an author table with Gail Z. Martin, author of The Chronicles of the Necromancer series. I’ve just started reading Book One: The Summoner. As Gail might say, “it’s got ghosts, vampires, and a necromancer as the good guy.” If you check out her ConCarolinas video blog for Saturday, you’ll even be “treated” to a snippet of me near the beginning.

A group of us went to dinner together, which was cool. Thanks for the invite, folks! And special thanks to David Coe for not killing me when I accidentally stomped on his foot while reaching for the copy of Staked that I sat under the table. Again, mea culpa, David!

I think my favorite panel on Saturday was “Rogues: Why We Love Our Bad Boys” (though David B. Coe never did explain why he loves bad boys which gave Faith Hunter the giggles… ) Hmmm, maybe it was just the lateness of the panel. We got into darker territory than originally expected, but other than that we decided Han Solo is one of the perfect examples of a modern rogue (which I think I’ll delve into a little deeper in another blog) and the attendees seemed to enjoy things until we were drowned out by Klingon Karaoke.

My only regret about the entire con was that I had to vanish before dawn on Sunday so that I could catch my flight to Disney World. I hope they invite me back. It was a blast!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Live (or undead) from Disney World...

Good morning Orlando, Florida! I'm mostly away from my laptop right now, but this news just can't wait until we get home: it looks like the sequel to Staked will be headed your way in 2009 with March as the tentative release date. Everybody do the Snoopy dance for me!


P.S. I really enjoyed ConCarolinas, although I had to leave before dawn on Sunday to join my family's annual vacation. I'll post a more detailed review of the con soon. :)