Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Paranormal Tuesday! Bigfoot

I've always loved stories about the paranormal, cryptozoology, UFOs, etc... and part of the reason for that was the show "In Search Of..." It ran from 1976 to 1982 and I have a lot of memories watching it and getting creeped out.

Here's an episode that ran in 1977 about Bigfoot. I think that out of all the cryptids, sasquatch is the most likely to be real. Based on the Patterson film, credible witnesses, and fossil evidence I think we'll eventually have an encounter with the creature.

What a great show! Originally Rod Serling hosted the show, but he passed away in 1975 so Leonard Nimoy took over hosting duties.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

What is best in life?!!! an excerpt from "The Light Fantastic" by Terry Pratchett

I love this little dig at the Conan the Barbarian movie that Terry Pratchett did in "The Light Fantastic".

"The Barbarian Chieftain said: "What then are the greatest things that a man may find in life? This is sort of thing you're supposed to say to maintain steppe cred in barbarian circles.

The man on his right thoughtfully drank his cocktail of mare's milk and snowcat blood, and spoke thus: "The crisp horizon of the steppe, the wind in your hair, a fresh horse under you."

The man on his left said: "the cry of the white eagle in the heights, the fall of snow in the forest, a true arrow in your bow. "

The chieftain nodded, and said: "Surely it is the sight of your enemy slain, the humiliation of his tribe and the lamentation of his women."

There was a general murmur of whiskery approval at this outrageous display.

The chieftain turned respectfully to his guest, a small figure carefullly warming his chilblains by the fire, and said: "But our guest, whose names is legend, must tell us truly: what is it that a man may call the greatest things in life?"

The guest paused in the middle of another unsuccessful attempt to light up.

"What shay?" he said, toothlessley.

"I said: what is it that a man may call the greatest things in life?"

The warriors leaned closer. This should be worth hearing.

The guest thought long and hard and then said, with deliberation: "Hot water, good dentishtry, and shoft lavatory paper."

Monday, November 1, 2010

A Low Key Gathering of the American Gods

I spent a most memorable weekend this Halloween at the House on the Rock, celebrating Neil Gaiman and his book "American Gods". This was hands down the best Halloween ever! I met some wonderful people and had a surreal time partying in the HOTR with one of my favorite authors and hundreds of fans dressed as their favorite characters from the book.

We checked in on Friday and and got all of our passes and things, we also received copies of the Newbury award winning book "The Graveyard Book"! Then we met up with some old friends and then went the events tent where Neil made his entrance. On stage he read chapter five from American Gods and then took some pre-submitted questions, moderated by Steve Pauson of Wisconsin Public Radio's "To The Best Of Our Knowledge". Later that night Neil revealed that he approved American Gods to be made into a T.V. series but wasn't more elaborate. He said it was a director that he respects and likes his work, but he wasn't one hundred percent sure that it will pan out, so we'll wait and see.

After that Neil Gaiman did a book signing so I got out my hardback copy of American Gods.

(Thanks to Jennifer Sutherland for taking these pictures)

Saturday there were some panels on various subjects and a scavenger hunt but we missed out on those. A weekend without kids means sleeping in, so we opted out for sleep. We did tour the House on the Rock for a couple of hours.

Later that afternoon was the costume contest. There were so many great, imaginative costumes I'll bet it was hard to choose!

And then the House on the Rock was open at night! There was a drawing to see who got the chance to ride the carousel, evidently nobody has ever rode on it before. Unfortunately I didn't win but it was still a great time! We had Christmas dinner in the House on the Rock surrounded by people dressed as characters for the book, a great band was playing in one of the rooms and Neil Gaiman was walking around mingling with everyone. I can't tell you how magical and surreal the whole event was. Unfortunately I had to return to Earth but I'm left with lot's of great memories that will be with me forever.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Countdown To Halloween 2010: Happy October 31! Curse of the Werewolf!!!

(Sorry for the crosspost)

Happy Halloween everyone! Sorry I haven't been posting lately, I had the flu for a couple of weeks and then lost my creative mojo for a bit.

Here's a pic I did a year ago based on my favorite Werewolf movie, "Curse of the Werewolf".

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Countdown To Halloween 2010: Happy October 7! Gamera!!!

Go, go Gamera! One of my favorite Kaiju characters ever! I did this one a couple of years ago, I know it's cheating but I have a couple of kids that are home sick from school today.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

countdown To Halloween 2010: Happy October 6! Frankenstein's Monster!!!

The monster who started the movie mad scientist craze!

Countdown To Halloween 2010: Happy October 5! Eegah!!!

Richard Kiel as Eegah! is a Caveman that goes on a rampage and terrorizes Arch Hall Jr. and his teenage pals. What more could someone want in a movie. I know, the MST3K treatment!

Monday, October 4, 2010

countdown To Halloween 2010: Happy October 4! Dracula!!!

This is an illustration I drew a couple of years ago. I would've put a new one up but, unfortunately my daughter added some illustrations to my picture that was almost finished.

This is just my interpretation of Dracula based on the novel. I wanted to give him an ugly and more feral appearance.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Countdown To Halloween 2010: Happy October 3! Creature From The Black Lagoon!!!

Probably one of my favorite Universal Monsters, the Gill-Man! He's kind of the Mick Jagger of monsters!
***I currently have The Bride and The Creature on sale on my Etsy shop.***

Countdown To Halloween 2010: Happy October 2! Bride of Frankenstein!!!

Bride of Frankenstein, a monster's dream come true! She's no mail order bride, but a man-made masterpiece!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Countdown To Halloween 2010: Happy October 1! Astro Zombie!!!

Greetings Boys and Ghouls!

As a kid I loved monsters and I loved checking out books about monsters from the library. Monsters Who's Who was one of my favorites! So I thought I would do a who's who of monsters of my own and I would use my own illustrations. This might be to big of a project for me to tackle but I'll give it a go.

Astro Zombie

Monday, September 27, 2010

If Tolkien glorified war in his stories, did Moorcock glorify drugs, incest and genocide, in the Elric series?

Some of you who have read The Cimmerian will know about an essay written by Michael Moorcock entitled "Epic Pooh". Brian Murphy did an excellent job picking the essay apart, check it out here.

One of my favorite characters that Michael Moorcock created was Elric the 428th sorcerer emperor of Melnibone. Being an albino, he's a sickly king who is kept alive through drugs and sorcery. He's charged with keeping many traditions, many so vile and cruel it makes Drow look civilized. He's also deeply in love with Cymoril who is his cousin. An unlikely character for swords & sorcery fiction. Through the course of the series, Elric finds himself at odds with the evil ways of his people, and his cousin Yrkoon who has been plotting to take the throne by force or treachery.

Elric leaves his homeland, his beloved Cymoril, and leaves his cousin Yrkoon in charge of Imrryr. Yrkoon sits in the throne and rules like a tyrant, but Elric knew that he would be a cruel emperor, and wasn't that the way of things in Imrryr? When Elric finally returns to his homeland he leads an army of barbarians, The Young Kingdoms in fighting Yrkoon and his fellow countrymen. The result is the genocide of Elric's race as well as his lover Cymoril.

Does this mean that Moorcock glorifies these horrific qualities like cruelty, incest, drug use, and genocide? No, not anymore than Tolkien glorified war.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Discovering Lin Carter

I've been discovering Lin Carter's work for the first time. I've read some of his short stories in the past and also his Conan pastiches but I've been reading The Gondwane Epic and feel like I'm discovering him for the first time. He was quite a prolific writer in the field of Swords & Sorcery fiction, and was the editor of the popular Flashing Swords anthologies. He's now more of a forgotten favorite to some and a maligned writer credited with hurting the Conan series (I disagree with this).

The Gondwane series is more of a Swords and Planet or Dying Earth story which used to be commonplace in the 60's and 70's but now it's too uncommon. It's kind of a mixture of post-apocalyptic/swords & sorcery/science fiction world of high adventure. Although criticized as being heavily influenced by Jack Vance's Dying Earth series, Carter made it his own wonderful fantasy realm. Set on the super continent "Gondawane",think Pangea reforming and you'll have the right idea.

"Millions upon millions of years hence, when all the ancient continents of Old Earth have come together to form the immensity of Gondwane, the Last Continent, in The Twilight of Time, there shall come a Savior of Galendil to wrestle with the Doom of the World: They shall call him Silvermane." - Oth Kangmir (The Book Imperishable)

The main character is Ganelon Silvermane, a human bio-mechanical construct of considerable size and strength, created by the scientists and alchemists of Gondwane as the ultimate hero of mankind. Joined by the Illusionist of Nerelon, Xarda the Knightrix of Jemmerdy, and the Bazonga, a giant sentient robot bird/vehicle, they travel the world of Gondwane to finally bring peace to a troubled world.

Currently I'm reading the second book "The Enchantress Of World's End" and it's as good, if not better than the first. I really like the Death Dwarves! Horrible, mutated form of anti-life!

If you get the opportunity to read the series you should, it's a fun read!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

My Response To Frog God Games...

...just a bit of amateur art, straight from the bargain basement.

If you want to read about the controversy, you can check out Chicago Wiz's blog, he sums it up best.

If you buy S&W I suggest supporting an indie publisher like John Adams at Brave Halfling Publishing. As for me, I've already made the move to Tunnels & Trolls. It's a better system and the game is still owned by Ken St. Andre and the original publisher Flying Buffalo.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Happy Birthday To Me

It really is my birthday, so I thought I would post an appropriate birthday movie!


Sunday, August 22, 2010

Happy Birthday Ray Bradbury...

...90 years of sci-fi greatness!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Monday, July 26, 2010

Alternate History

We all know how the battle of the Alamo ended, don't we?

Well let me refresh your memory. When Santa Anna's army thought they were going to deliver the final blow the the rebels, Col. Travis' swooped in on a Pterodactyl and leading a T-Rex towards the Mexican Army. After the T-Rex had properly gorged himself on most of the army, General Santa Anna was executed in front of a cannon.

Okay, maybe home schooling isn't the right way to go this year, but this is how my kids re-enacted the battle of the Alamo!

This is more like Ray Harryhausen's "Valley of Gwangi"

Friday, July 23, 2010

Inner Child

I gave the stats for Tunnels & Trolls on my RPG blog. Here!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Does Anyone Know This Artist?

I was going through my old sci-fi/fantasy paperbacks and came across this ACE Double of "Flight From Yesterday" by Robert Moore Williams and "Envoy To New Worlds" (A Retief novel) by Keith Laumer.

I just love the cover and I'm positive that I've seen his/her artwork before. I would love to see artwok like this on current RPG material today! If anyone knows this artist, could you drop me a line. I'd just like to see more art similar to this. I've been brushing up on my painting skills lately (pun intended) and would like to come up with some paintings that are inspired by (not ripoffs) paintings such as this.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

OSR Logo

Sorry for the cross post, but check it! Use it it you wanna!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

German D&D commercial

Deinen zeit ist gekommen!

B.P. Board Game

I just thought this was an interesting link and here.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Conan Poll

I'm working on some house rules for Song Of Blades and Heroes set in Conan's Hyborian world and wanted to see what people thought of the title ideas. Song of The Hyborian Age, Song of The Road of Kings, Song of The Nemedian Chronicles and Song of the Riddle of Steel. I can't make up my mind on which I like most!

Also, should I include other sources besides R.E.H.'s stories like other novels, comics etc. or just keep it Howardian. I more than likely going to keep it Howardian mainly because of all the dilution of the story in various media. But I'd like to hear your thoughts.

Friday, June 25, 2010

The Ultimate Action Figure

I found this on Fail Blog and had to repost!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Awesome Thundarr illustrations!

Just surfing the web and came across some awesome Thundarr fan art!

Art by Jose Holder, check out his page here!

Awesome Ookla picture by David Wachter

This one is by Cheeks74, I love the style!

Nelson Daniel

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

My Favorite Science Fiction Novels

And I mean "Science Fiction" in the broad sense like it used to mean back in the 1950's, no sub-genres. This isn't really in any order of importance, this is just a list of books that have been important to me through out the years.

1. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

2. Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien

3. Conan by Robert E. Howard

4. Dune by Frank Herbert

5. Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs

6. Bill The Galactic Hero by Harry Harrison

7. The Puppet Masters By Robert Heinlein

8. At The Mountains Of Madness by H.P. Lovecraft

9. The Witch World by Andre Norton

10. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

11. American Gods by Neil Gaiman

12. A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess

13. A Wrinkle In Time by Madeline L'Engle

14. Crystal Cave by Mary Stewart

15. Dragon Flight by Anne McCaffrey

16. Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep? by Phillip K. Dick

17. Swords and Deviltry by Fritz Leiber

18. Starship Troopers by Robert Heinlein

19. Elric of Melnibone by Michael Moorcock

20. Hrolf Kraki's Saga by Poul Anderson

21. Tower of Glass by Robert Silverberg

Okay, so it turned out to be an odd number. Maybe I'll do another 21 later!