Israeli author and game designer Uri Kurlianchik was the first person with whom I had a Google audio chat, way back when we were discussing edits on his short story “The Sad Story of the Naga” in Bull Spec #2. (Or it might have been about his choose-your-own-adventure project I never figured out how to publish in a magazine?) Over the years now, I’ve enjoyed hearing his stories of teaching kids to play roleplaying games — the foolish or genius things that “his” kids try both in and outside of the rules and their understanding thereof has proven quite entertaining, as has watching him develop his own RPG, RATS, about “the rat holy war against humanity”. And his photos of the various landscapes in his travels are mind-blowing. Back in early 2012, he launched an Indiegogo campaign to fund an illustrated 20-story cycle of stories generated from those travels and those landscapes, and from the many peoples who have and still inhabit them. Last fall he e-published the collection as Tales from an Israeli Storyteller, but it took until January of this year for Uri to wrangle a print edition. That epic struggle with margins and fonts is only part of his essay on the hardest part(s) of putting this collection together.
By Uri Kurlianchik:
I have written numerous adventures and locales for various role playing games over the years. I often had to deal with rather capricious clients who insisted on reasonable deadlines, some semblance of readability, and not making offensive remarks about their mothers. This experience made me think that crowd-funding and self-publishing a story collection of my own should be a piece of cake.
In retrospect, I have no idea why I thought this. Read the rest of this entry »
Coming to Town: Lynne Hansen and Jeff Strand for The Nevermore Film Festival, interviewed by Richard DanskyPosted: 18 February, 2015
By Richard Dansky:
Lynne Hansen and Jeff Strand are one of horror fiction’s power couples. A perennial host of the Bram Stoker Awards, Jeff blends humor and horror in acclaimed novels like Pressure and his short story collection, Dead Clown Barbecue. Lynne’s prolific in YA horror (The Return, The Change) as well as working in film (He’s Not Looking So Great, Chomp). And there is absolutely no truth to the rumor that in their last trip to North Carolina, Jeff failed to finish his side of hush puppies at a Durham BBQ restaurant and paid a fearful price.
Q: What brings you to the Triangle?
Lynne: The Nevermore Film Festival at the historic Carolina Theatre Durham. And friends. (Definitely not the snow.)
Jeff: Also BBQ.
Q: Tell us about the films you have showing at Nevermore.
Lynne: Chomp is a short horror comedy about a little old lady named Millie who is determined to prove she’s captured a real zombie—even if he’s not one. Last weekend at the GeekFest Film Festival at Shock Pop Comic Con in Fort Lauderdale, Chomp won Best Short—and our very first Best of Fest award. I couldn’t be more tickled.
Jeff: Gave Up The Ghost is also a short horror comedy, directed by Gregory Lamberson. It’s about a very pretentious writer who loses his ultimate masterpiece novel in a computer crash, and ends up seeking supernatural assistance to retrieve the file from the netherworld. It also features brief appearances by zombies, vampires, mummies, cannibals, and Bigfoot.
Q: Both of you come from a background in writing fiction. What led you to working in film? Read the rest of this entry »
Upcoming fiction readings: selections from the full event listings for books without spaceships or ghostsPosted: 10 February, 2015
As I mentioned in last week’s roundup of upcoming young reader events, in looking over the newsletter event listings, I didn’t see many “grown up” speculative fiction readings in the coming months — other than of course Monica Byrne’s paperback launch of The Girl in the Road on February 17 and the Wake County Library “Let’s Talk Sci-Fi” series in March. While the picture changes quickly when you turn your focus on middle grade and young reader books, it’s even more crowded if you turn your attention to “mimetic” fiction. So! Here’s a quick preview of what’s coming soon for mystery, historical, literary, and other fiction readers: [Note: one or more of the novels may!? have a ghost, which may or may not exist only in the mind(s) of one or more characters. Close ’nuff.]
10 (Tue) 7 pm — Quail Ridge Books hosts Charles Belfoure – ‘The Paris Architect’. (Fiction.)
10 (Tue) 7 pm — Flyleaf Books hosts Chapel Hill native Nic Brown discusses In Every Way, his new novel set in Chapel Hill and Beaufort. (Fiction.)
11 (Wed) 7 pm — Flyleaf Books hosts Melissa Pimentel discusses her novel Love by the Book, with a free drinks/appetizers reception at Lucha Tigre at 6:30 pm. (Fiction.) Read the rest of this entry »
In looking over the newsletter event listings, I don’t see many “grown up” speculative fiction readings in the coming months — other than of course Monica Byrne’s paperback launch of The Girl in the Road on February 17. But the picture changes quickly when you turn your focus on middle grade and young reader books. So! Here’s a quick preview of what’s coming soon for the young and young at heart.
5 (Thursday) 5 pm — Quail Ridge Books hosts Raul Gonzalez – ‘Lowriders in Space’ — “Artist Raul Gonzalez (currently exhibiting in downtown Raleigh) is aka Raul the Third. But kids who pour over his work as illustrator for Cathy Camper’s Lowriders in Space will know him as awesome. Lowriders merges Spanish, a bit of astronomy, and car lore for an out-of-this-world adventure. Young (and maybe not so young) fans of graphic novels will love his drawing program, with a demo, activities, and advice for budding artists, ages 7+. See what you can create with just a pen.” (Kids.) Read the rest of this entry »
Charlotte author John G. Hartness is a larger-than-life figure in our world, so it’s no surprise that his characters are bold, colorful, and (quite often) either from out of this world or dealing with the things that aren’t. From his first novel The Chosen in 2010 to his “Bubba the Monster Hunter” and “Black Knight Chronicles” urban fantasy series, Hartness has a knack for giving a distinctive — and usually southern and profane, and funny — voice for his characters as well. For his new book, Raising Hell: A Quincy Harker, Demon Hunter Novella, Hartness looked to repeat some of those winning formulae while also creating something new, and in less space than a full-length novel would have allowed.
By John G. Hartness:
Like Darin last month, I’m an old rock and roll fan, so my immediate inclination was to go all Tom Petty on you and say that the waiting was the hardest part. But there were two things stopping me. First, Darin did it better, and second, it just wouldn’t have been true. Read the rest of this entry »
Paul Kincaid’s From the Other Side, January 2015: Adam Roberts, sequels, and the James Herbert AwardPosted: 3 February, 2015
From the Other Side, January 2015
By Paul Kincaid
[Editor’s Note: From the Other Side is Paul Kincaid’s monthly column on books and news from the other side of the Atlantic.]
It’s a new year, a time of change, of novelty, a time when we throw out all the old familiar stuff from 2014 and welcome in fresh work and different writers. So let’s see what 2015 has in store for us.
And we start with a new book from … Adam Roberts. Hm, sorry about that, for a moment there it felt as if 2014 hadn’t quite ended. Oh, no, there really is a new book from Adam Roberts. Saint Rebor is a new collection of short stories from NewCon Press, part of their Imaginings series which are all well worth a look. Saint Rebor is the second collection of stories from Adam Roberts, after Adam Robots which came out just over a year ago. This collection includes ten short stories and a poem. I note that the publicity material tells us that it includes “two stories that have never appeared in print before and three that are completely original to this book”, though I’m not exactly sure how that is supposed to work. All I’ll say is that the opening story, “What Did Tessimond Tell You?”, was included in two best of the year collections. Given how many other stories by Adam Roberts seem to have cropped up in various places recently, I shouldn’t wonder if he had enough for a third collection already in stock. Be that as it may, I have a feeling this won’t be the last time I mention Mr Roberts in this column in 2015.