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Your Musical Community Is Where You Find It

Posted on by Alex in music | Leave a comment

Music as a communal event is difficult for someone like me, who doesn’t play any instrument and doesn’t (or shouldn’t) sing. I’ve attended concerts where the sense of community was created by the shared music we all knew, or by the intense efforts of the performer to make sure that connection happened. But for the most part, I’ve always been an observer, watching a show and enjoying it, but never really being part of it. However, I do recall one …

Help Plot My 2015 Reading Tour

Posted on by Alex in Hum and the Shiver, writers, writing | 1 Comment

Would you like to hear me read Long Black Curl to you this summer? Maybe ask me some questions in person? If so, here’s what you need to do.  Go to your local bookstore, ask if they’d be interested, and if they are, send me the contact info, including the name of the person in charge of author events. Don’t worry if someone else has already sent in a particular bookstore: multiple mentions of the same place are important, too. …

Why I Haven’t Blogged Lately

Posted on by Alex in writers, writing | 4 Comments

I haven’t blogged in a while, so I thought I’d blog on why that is. Enjoy the brisk taste of meta. Primary among my reasons for not blogging is the continuing work on Long Black Curl, the third Tufa novel that comes out in May. You’d think it would be done by now, wouldn’t you?  Alas, ’tis not the case. Not only is this the longest book I’ve yet written, it’s been the most complex to finish.  It didn’t start …

Win an advance reader copy of Long Black Curl

Posted on by Alex in ARCs, giveaway, Tufa | 135 Comments

The third Tufa novel, Long Black Curl, doesn’t come out until May. But you might win an advance reader copy right now by leaving a comment below telling me about your favorite folk song (new, old, original, traditional, it doesn’t matter). I’ll be giving away eight copies, so pass the word and let everyone know. Deadline is midnight on Sunday, February 22. And, to get you in the mood, here’s Tuatha Dea doing their original song inspired by the book.

Win a copy of Mythica!

Posted on by Alex in movies, reviews | 31 Comments

Recently the good folks at Arrowstorm Entertainment were kind enough to give me a sneak peek at their latest production, Mythica: A Quest for Heroes.  You can read my review of it here, and an interview with two of the stars here. Short version: I found it very enjoyable, with a terrific main character (played with full-on commitment by Melanie Stone), and as the first film of a series, it sets things up nicely. Moreover, it offers two strong female …

Talking to My Daughter About Women in Refrigerators

Posted on by Alex in comic books, movies, writers, writing | 4 Comments

On New Year’s Day, I did some surfing through various Twitter feeds and came across this article by Caroline Pruett. Titled, “Talking to Our Daughters About Violence Against Women in Comics,” she speaks to the issue of “women in refrigerators,” a term for using the death and/or brutalization of female characters as devices to motivate male heroes. It’s a concept that’s been covered in great detail elsewhere. As I read Ms. Pruett’s article, I thought about my own daughter, and …

Some thoughts on the Ghost Brothers

Posted on by Alex in music, reviews, writers, writing | 3 Comments

Recently I caught up with the cast recording of the Stephen King/John Mellencamp musical, Ghost Brothers of Darkland County. As a longtime fan of Mellencamp’s, and an admirer of King’s (there’s a difference, and I’ll explain it shortly), I was curious to see what they’d come up with working together, and in a form neither had tried before. The results, for me at least, were disappointing. The story involves two sets of brothers, one alive and one dead. The ghost …

Interview with Melanie Stone and Nicola Posener from Mythica

Posted on by Alex in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Two weeks ago I reviewed Mythica: A Quest for Heroes, the first in a projected five-film epic fantasy series.  As well as being a great little film, it was notable for having two female characters as the driving forces of the story, with neither sidetracked into any obligatory romance.  The two actresses who played these roles, Melanie Stone and Nicola Posener, were kind enough to answer some questions for me about their roles. Your roles are interesting to me because, …

Interview: the writers of Carmilla

Posted on by Alex in Horror Films, Uncategorized, vampires | Leave a comment

  Carmilla, J. Sheridan LeFanu’s 1871 novella that predates Bram Stoker’s Dracula, is a seminal work of genre fiction.  It introduces the idea of the lesbian vampire, something that later writers would expand into its own genre (check out Hammer’s The Vampire Lovers for a fairly faithful, if overtly sexed-up, version).  It’s also surprisingly contemporary in its writing style.  So contemporary, in fact, that it’s been turned into a 36-episode web series.  Here’s the first installment:   I love this …

Movie Review: Mythica, A Quest for Heroes

Posted on by Alex in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Back in 2011, I stumbled on Arrowstorm Entertainment’s Dawn of the Dragonslayer, a low-budget fantasy epic that had the look of a much more expensive film. But what really got my attention was the care given to the performances: leads Richard McWilliams and Nicola Posener really dug into their characters, and director Anne Black gave them the time to do so. When you’ve seen as many bad performances in genre films as I have, you really appreciate that sort of …