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KRAD's Inaccurate Guide to Life
ramblings from a mad fedora'd writer
kradical
I will be at Shore Leave 37 in Cockeysville, Maryland this coming weekend, at Myths and Legends Con in Denver, Colorado the weekend after, and Dragon Con 2015 in Atlanta, Georgia over Labor Day weekend.

Here are my tentative schedules:

SHORE LEAVE

Friday

6-7pm: Sci-Fi Squares (Valley)
10pm-midnight: Meet the Pros (Hunt/Valley hallway)

Saturday
10-11am: "E Pluribis Fiction: Writing & Editing Anthologies," w/Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Mary Fan, Michael Jan Friedman, Phil Giunta, Susanna Reilly, and Steve Wilson (Derby)
11am-noon: Boogie Knights concert (Valley)
2-3pm: "All Roads Lead to Holmes," w/Christopher L. Bennett, Kathleen O. David, Robert Greenberger, and Melissa Scott (Salon A)
3-4pm: "Upcoming Stargate Fiction," w/Amy Griswold and Melissa Scott (Salon A)
8-11pm: masquerade (Boogie Knights will be performing at halftime) (Hunt/Valley)

Sunday
10-11am: "Canon or Not: Tie-ins' Relation to Source Material," w/Kirsten Beyer, Glenn Hauman, Stephen Kozeniewski, John Jackson Miller, Melissa Scott, and Dayton Ward (Salon B)
11am-noon: practical self-defense workshop (Concierge)
1-2pm: "Writing & Publishing Short Stories," w/Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Michael Critzer, Amy Griswold, Jim Johnson, Joshua Palmatier, TJ Perkins, and Richard C. White (Salon B)
2-3pm: "eSpec Books Introduces The Side of Good/The Side of Evil, w/Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Peter David, Kathleen O. David, Robert Greenberger, Mike McPhail, and Aaron Rosenberg (Salon B)


MALCON

Friday

7-8pm: VIP Meet 'n' Greet, w/Kilted Man, Stant Litore, Pandora Celtica, Brian Ross, and Vivian Trask (Gallifrey)

Saturday
9-10am: "Spinoff Dumbledores," w/Jessica Brawner and Kevin Ikenberry (Serenity)
2-3pm: Q&A with Keith R.A. DeCandido, w/Vivian Trask (Gallifrey)
6-7pm: "Heroes Reboot," w/Peter J. Wacks (Gallifrey)
9-10pm: "Fanfiction & Media Tie-ins," w/David Boop, Mike Cervantes, and Josh Vogt (Red Keep)

Sunday
10-11am: "Writing the Supernatural," w/Mario Acevedo, David Boop, and Guy Anthony De Marco (Serenity)
12-1pm: "Lord of the Rings: Cinematic Future," w/Thomas A. Fowler, Paul Lell, and Aaron Michael Ritchey (Serenity)
1-2pm: "Why Firefly Was Cut Short and Why We Want It Back," w/Thomas A. Fowler and Paul Lell (Gallifrey)


DRAGON CON

Friday

1-2pm: "Extensions of Whedon," w/Adam Cogan, Rebekah Isaacs, Georges Jeanty, and Ben Lichius (Chastain FG--Westin)
2.30-3.30pm: practical self-defense workshop (Vinings--Hyatt)
5.30-6.30pm: "Two Aliens Walk into a Bar: Humor in SF," w/Peter David and Esther M. Friesner (Embassy AB--Hyatt)
7-8pm: "Star Trek Authors," w/Peter David and Melinda M. Snodgrass (Athens--Sheraton)

Saturday
1-2pm: reading (University--Hyatt)
2.30-3.30pm: "The Legend of Xena: 20th Anniversary of the Warrior Princess" (M303-M304--Marriott)
5.30-6.30pm: "Christopher Lee and Leonard Nimoy" (M303-M304--Marriott)

Sunday
1-2pm: autographing (International Hall South--Marriott)
5.30-6.30pm: "X-Files Anthology," w/Kevin J. Anderson and Jonathan Maberry (M106-M107--Marriott)
8.30-9.30pm: "Geek Years 1985 & 1990: Years of Almost Good Sequels," w/Bobby Nash and James Palmer (M303-M304--Marriott)
10-11pm: "First Contact Improv," w/Tedd Roberts, Larry Correia, and Robert J. Sawyer (Embassy AB--Hyatt)

Monday
11.30am-12.30pm: "Is That All?: Is There More Joss for You?" (Chastain FG--Westin)

Current Mood: impressed impressed
Current Music: "Psycho Killer" by Talking Heads

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kradical
Weir's out, Carter's in, Beckett's back, the Travelers show up, Todd becomes an ally, and the replicators are pissed. The Stargate Rewatch does Atlantis season 4.

An excerpt:
Remove “Trio” from the equation, and you actually have a really strong season, and a most excellent use of Carter. Unlike season 8 of SG-1, when the character was never really given much of a chance to truly be the leader of SG-1, Carter here gets to be the leader. Unlike Weir, who was ill-served to the leader-who-stays-behind role, Carter has reached the point in her career where she would be in command (just as O’Neill did in season 8 of SG-1). She still gets her hands dirty—viz., the commando raid to rescue the team in “Reunion”—and her big brain is still periodically useful, like in “Be All My Sins Remember’d.”

Mostly, though, she makes good command decisions. She shouts down Woolsey in “The Seer,” while also making several difficult choices, she handles the death of Heightmeyer with impressive dignity in “Doppelganger,” and the moment when she tears Ellis a new one for rebuking McKay in “Be All My Sins Remember’d” is a crowning moment of awesome.

Current Mood: impressed impressed
Current Music: "Ballad of a Thin Man" by Bob Dylan

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kradical
...assuming Donald Trump doesn't speak in public, in any case: Batman's Guide to Being the World's Greatest Detective. I laughed my ass off. Seriously, I can't sit right now..................

Current Mood: amused amused
Current Music: "Nostalgia" by Arlo Guthrie

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kradical
I've been a fan of Talking Heads since I first heard their cover of "Take Me to the River" as a kid. It was on their magnificently titled album More Songs About Buildings and Food. Throughout the 1980s, I snarfed up their records, including the excellent True Stories LP, released the year I started college, 1986, and it became one of my go-to tapes during my time at Fordham. True Stories was a companion piece to a film of the same name that TH frontman David Byrne co-wrote, directed, and starred in.

The album gripped me from jump with this song, which was surprisingly hard-drivin' by the Heads' usual New-Wave-y standards. It's called "Love for Sale."

Current Mood: "The Lights" by Robbie Robertson

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kradical
Me at Coast Con in March 2001 in Biloxi, Mississippi, specifically Sunday morning when I find a coffee carafe only to be devastated by its tragic emptiness. So sad.....

Current Mood: amused amused
Current Music: "Born in Puerto Rico" by Paul Simon

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kradical
At 12,210 words on Heroes Reborn: Save the Cheerleader, Destroy the World. Just finished Chapter 9. Chapter 10's gonna be fun..............

Current Mood: exhausted exhausted
Current Music: "The Witch's Promise" by Jethro Tull

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kradical
It got a preview release at San Diego Comic-Con, and as of yesterday, the new X-Files anthology Trust No One -- edited by the mighty Jonathan Maberry and published by the fine folks at IDW Publishing -- is officially on sale in both paperback and audio form, with the eBook coming very soon.



Some ordering links:
Amazon (paperback)
Amazon (audio)
Barnes & Noble (paperback)
Indie Bound (paperback)
Blackstone (audio)


The anthology has a story by me called "Back in El Paso My Life Will be Worthless," as well as tales by Kevin J. Anderson, Peter Clines, Max Allan Collins, Paul Crilley, Timothy Deal, W.D. Gagliani & David Benton, Ray Garton, Heather Graham, Brian Keene, Gini Koch, Tim Lebbon, Gayle Lynds & John C. Sheldon, Stefan Petrucha, and Aaron Rosenberg.

Check it out!

Current Mood: happy happy
Current Music: "Way Out There" by Pete Seeger

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kradical
It's Lazarus and his incredible changing beard -- and as an added bonus, the other Lazarus and his incredible changing beard! The TOS Rewatch suffers through "The Alternative Factor."

An excerpt:
There is absolutely nothing in this episode that makes sense. The characters all stumble around like idiots, nobody in the main cast actually does anything until Kirk has his obligatory fistfight with matter-Lazarus. The conversations all contain leaps in logic that aren’t backed by evidence, and there’s an appalling lack of urgency given what’s actually at stake. The time travel element is dropped in out of nowhere and then completely forgotten.

Current Mood: amused amused
Current Music: "Drive on the Young Side of Life" by Jethro Tull

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kradical
The Kickstarter for The Side of Good/The Side of Evil is still going strong, and we still need more pledges to make this thing happen. One of the incentives is to be a character in one of the stories. For a $60 pledge you get to be a character in the book -- either a background character or a person who's killed by the machinations of a super-villain. (In addition, you also get a copy of the book in electronic, DRM-free form, a thank-you note, and an acknowledgment.) And that's just one of many nifty rewards. Another is an autographed copy of SCPD: The Case of the Claw, which you get in addition to the anthology for $37. Or you can just pledge $5 and get the eBook -- for $25 you get the print book.

Do go check it out!

Current Mood: busy busy
Current Music: "Reasons for Waiting" by Jethro Tull

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kradical
At 8617 words on Heroes Reborn: Save the Cheerleader, Destroy the World, bringing me to the end of Chapter 5. Next up is Chapter 6. Well, actually, next up is bed...............

Current Mood: accomplished accomplished
Current Music: "Sins of my Father" by Tom Waits

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kradical
Age: 46
Birthday: 18 April 1969
Relationship status: engaged to wrenn
Biggest fear: being physically restrained
Dream Job: writer -- oh, wait!
Dream Car: *shrug* one that works
Dream House: a 4BR house in NYC with a small yard and a driveway/garage

FAVORITE?
Artist(s): Georgia O'Keeffe
Movie: Rashomon
Song: "Telegraph Road" by Dire Straits
TV series: The Wire
Animal: tigers
Book: Frankenstein, or, The Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley
Color: red

THIS OR THAT?
Twitter or Facebook: Facebook, but I use both
Snapchat or Instagram: Instagram
Pandora or Youtube: YouTube
Coke or Pepsi: whichever
Tea or Coffee: coffee, though I like tea, too
Tacos or Pizza: PIZZA! (but it has to be New York pizza)
Winter or summer: spring

WOULD YOU EVER?
Get married: already have done, and plan to do it again
Have Kids: nope
Swim with sharks: I can't imagine that circumstance presenting itself....
Daredevil Stunts: probably not
Jump out of a Helicopter: only if it was on fire

Current Mood: amused amused
Current Music: "Life's a Long Song" by Jethro Tull

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kradical
It's been pretty quiet on the personal appearance front of late, but that will change, y'know, a lot in the months of August, September, and October. I'll be appearing all over the country! Well, not quite, but in a lot of places, including a couple of cities I've never done a personal appearance in before.

Here's a quickie guide to my convention schedule for the next three months..........

7-9 August: Shore Leave 37, Cockeysville, Maryland. I will be both an author guest and a music guest, as usual, at this wonderful media convention just north of Baltimore. I'll be doing panels, game shows, and autographings, and the Boogie Knights will be performing two concerts on Saturday (one at 11am, one at masquerade half-time).

14-16 August: Myths and Legends Convention, Denver, Colorado. I will be a Special Guest at this literary convention, my first time appearing in Denver (unless you count when I went with my family when I was four, which you probably shouldn't).

4-7 September: Dragon Con 2015, Atlanta, Georgia. I am returning to Dragon Con as an author guest. Expect to see me on many many different tracks, among them Star Trek, writers, American Sci-Fi Classics, Whedonverse, horror, Stargate, and more.

11-13 September: RocCon, Rochester, New York. I'll once again have a table in the dealer room and likely be doing a panel/workshop or three.

8-11 October: New York Comic-Con, New York City. Megan Rothrock of The LEGO Adventure Book series and I will once again share a booth in the small press area at NYCC, and I may or may not be doing a panel or two.

23-25 October: EnigmaCon, Daytona Beach, Florida. I'm one of the two literary guests at this convention, which will be my first con in Florida in years....

Hope to see folks at these various shows!

Current Mood: pleased pleased
Current Music: "Stranded in a Limousine" by Paul Simon

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kradical
An oldie but a goodie from Paul Simon. This 1975 song is here being performed in 2000, but both this live version and the original have superlative drum work from the great Steve Gadd, who has backed Simon up on the skins for much of his solo career.

Current Mood: awake awake
Current Music: "50 Ways to Leave Your Lover" by Paul Simon

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kradical
I've written 6791 words of Save the Cheerleader, Destroy the World, having completed four of the 26 chapters. (Yes, it's a novella that's supposed to be about 30,000 words. The chapters will be short.....)

I can't post an excerpt, as spoilers must be avoided, but suffice it to say I'm having a grand ol' time writing this.

Current Mood: pleased pleased
Current Music: "Unomathemba" by Ladysmith Black Mambazo

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kradical
Over 4th of July weekend, wrenn, woofiegrrl, and I saw my old buddy and bandmate Steven L. Rosenhause (rosenhaus) conduct a local orchestra in doing a bunch of patriotic songs, including a couple of pieces by John Philip Sousa.

In a like vein, here's Canadian Brass, joined by several members of both the New York Philharmonic and the Boston Symphony Orchestra, doing a tribute to Sousa, arranged and conducted by Rayburn Wright.

Current Mood: awake awake
Current Music: tribute to John Philip Sousa by Canadian Brass w/orchestra

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kradical
I've probably done this before, but I don't care, because it's my absolute favorite piece of music. Actually it's two of my absolute favorite pieces of music mashed together which is why it's so awesome. For thirty years, the signature song of the Canadian brass quintet -- called, prosaically, Canadian Brass -- has been "The Saints Hallelujiah," a seamless and brilliant blending of "When the Saints Go Marching In" and "The Hallelujiah Chorus."

Current Mood: awake awake
Current Music: "Christmas Song" by Jethro Tull

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kradical
Live from Vasquez Rocks! It's Kirk vs. the Gorn! The TOS Rewatch shows up to watch in the "Arena."

An excerpt:
This sort of story with that kind of twist is commonplace now, but Star Trek was one of the first to do it—and unlike other genre shows that pulled this kind of switch like The Twilight Zone and The Outer Limits, the twist wasn’t there for the sake of pulling a fast one on the viewer or to reveal a more devastating unexpected truth. No, the twist here comes from a place of compassion, of enlightenment, of making a mistake and realizing it.

Current Mood: geeky geeky
Current Music: "Insane Insane Again" by the J. Geils Band

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kradical
This past weekend, I took a trip down to D.C. and got to go to Nationals Park for the first time. woofiegrrl and I had a great time despite being seriously baked alive by the awful heat and humidity. I even got a Nats hat to keep the sun away (which has prompted a hilarious exchange on Facebook questioning my Yankees fanhood and wondering why I was wearing a Walgreens hat....).



(By the way, here's an article discussing the similarities and differences between the Nats and Walgreen's logos.....)

In the end, behind the latest superb performance by Zack Greinke, the Dodgers whupped the Nationals 5-0. Actually "whupped" isn't fair -- the Dodgers actually played horribly on offense, blowing multiple opportunities, including loading the bases twice without scoring, in the first eight innings, managing only to score once on a wild pitch. It wasn't until the top of the ninth that they broke it open against Blake Treinen, who pitched a third of an inning and gave up four runs. And he only got that one out because the Dodgers gave it to him thanks to Don Mattingly inexplicable bunting fetish.



The weekend also included a fantastic burlesque show at the Black Cat, which we attended with our buddy forexample, and also seeing Spy on Friday, which is the finest spy movie ever made. Just as Independence Day is the best alien-invasion movie ever made because the black guy and the Jew are the ones who save the day instead of being the first two killed like they are in every other movie, Spy is great because the overweight smart woman is the action hero. And the whole movie's worth it just for Jason Statham sending up the character that he usually plays in every action movie, and doing so magnificently.

Got a couple of pitches out and now I'm focused on finishing Save the Cheerleader, Destroy the World, the Heroes Reborn novella I'm writing......

Current Mood: busy busy
Current Music: "Pierre" by Carole King

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kradical
As I've mentioned, eSpec Books is Kickstarting a superhero/super-villian flipbook anthology called The Side of Good/The Side of Evil, featuring stories by me, Peter David, Bryan J.L. Glass, Robert Greenberger, Aaron Rosenberg, Jennifer K. Spendlove, Gail Z. Martin, James Chambers, Neal Levin, and Kathleen O. David, among others.

On their blog, eSpec is running interviews with several of the contributors, and here's the one with me, where I talk about my superheroic influences, my story, and other nifty keeno things.

An excerpt:
eSB: What is your favorite superhero movie and why?

KRAD: Mystery Men. It was ahead of its time, as it would have been much better received after superhero movies took off, not in 1999 the year before X-Men was released. But it’s a great sendup of the genre, and still also a great movie about heroes. “We’ve got a date with destiny, and she just ordered the lobster.”

Current Mood: tired tired
Current Music: "Strange Face of Love" by Tito & Tarantula

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kradical
Howard Jones did a nice little song called "No One is to Blame," which was all fine and dandy, but for a best-of album, he conscripted Phil Collins to aid him in a remastering of it, with additional vocals and drums, and it turned a nice little song into a much more luscious and nifty song. And here it is.

Current Mood: awake awake
Current Music: "I Want it All" by Queen

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kradical
The grand finale of the battle against the Ori, plus bonus replicators! Featuring Adria's best impersonation of the Human Torch, Mitchell getting the shit kicked out of him, Teal'c's crowning moment of awesome, and Landry wearing the leather jacket of badassitude. The Stargate Rewatch opens up The Ark of Truth.

An excerpt:
Teal’c’s speech to Tomin about how he will never forget the innocents he killed and how he will never ever forgive himself, and that the only thing he can do is try to save as many lives as he can going forward, is quite possibly the character’s finest moment—a magnificent summary of Teal’c’s own life and brutally necessary advice to a repentant Tomin. I’ve said that Teal’c was utterly useless in the ninth and tenth seasons, and I stand by that, but honestly? That speech completely makes up for his fifth-wheel status on the last two seasons of the show. Just brilliant.

Current Mood: tired tired
Current Music: "She Moves On" by Paul Simon

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kradical
In the 1950s, Howlin' Wolf released a kickass song called "Smokestack Lightning." Here's the original:




Here's a 1964 live performance that's much bluesier:




In 2008, the movie Cadillac Records was released, which had some fantastic performances by the likes of Jeffrey Wright (as Muddy Waters), Mos Def (as Chuck Berry), Beyoncé (as Etta James), Columbus Short (as Little Walter), Cedric the Entertainer (as Willie Dixon), and the superlative Eamonn Walker playin' the Wolf. The actors all did their own singing, and Walker's junkyard growl is a perfect fit for "Smokestack Lightning."

Current Mood: awake awake
Current Music: "Rosa on the Factory Floor" by Jethro Tull

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kradical
Today was a wonderful day. Wrenn and I decided to spend the day wandering Manhattan. I already had a haircut appointment, and I wanted to check my PO box, and we decided to also do something Wrenn's wanted to do since before she moved up here: visit the Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum Complex, built on the now-retired aircraft carrier. It was absolutely wonderful. Just the right break needed between writing projects.

Here's a bunch of pictures from our frabjous day (calloo callay!):






























Current Mood: happy happy
Current Music: "Torquay" by Tito & Tarantula

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kradical
"Are you challenging me to a duel?" "Yes, if you have the courage." The TOS Rewatch encounters the all-powerful Trelane, a.k.a. "The Squire of Gothos."

An excerpt:
The eye-rolling engaged in by Sulu, Jaeger, DeSalle, and Uhura as Trelane throws ethnic stereotypes at them is a delightful deconstruction and repudiation of those same stereotypes. And William Campbell is generally having so much fun in the role that it’s very easy to just go along for the ride. The revelation that Trelane is just a child puts the entire episode into focus, as it explains how mercurial he is, not to mention how easy he is to manipulate. When Kirk talks Trelane out of hanging him by the noose, the first thought is that it’s the sort of thing only a child would fall for—but Trelane is a child.

Current Mood: busy busy
Current Music: "Romeo & Juliet" by Dire Straits

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kradical
One of my favorite songs, you can just picture the argument that this song grew out of, as one person just insisted that Marilyn Monroe was married to Henry Miller rather than Arthur Miller. Anyhow, here's Dan Bern's alternate-reality speculation, "Marilyn."

Current Mood: amused amused
Current Music: "St. James Infirmary" by Dave Van Ronk

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