Just For Fun: My Favorite Moments, Part 3

  Continuing answering the question of what my favorite moments in my own works are!   Polychrome: My only self-published work to date, Polychrome is a grown-up readership-targeted Oz novel. It is also the only story I've ever had that FORCED me to write it – literally shutting off my ability to write in my contracted novels unless I wrote at least a chapter in Polychrome per week. As such, one can guess that there are a lot of moments in Polychrome that resonate strongly with me; still, I have to pick three, so here we [ Continue reading... ]

Just For Fun: My Favorite Moments, Part 2

Continuing the discussion of the things I've liked most in my works...   Castaway Planet: Eric and I ended Portal fairly certain that this was the last of the series, but not necessarily the universe. The main cast of Boundary had gotten pretty old to be gallivanting around the Solar System. However, when we thought about doing a space-based version of Swiss Family Robinson or Mysterious Island, the Boundaryverse suggested itself strongly as a candidate. So fast forward a century or two, let the humans learn the interstellar [ Continue reading... ]

Just For Fun: My Favorite Moments Part 1

  I have often been asked what my favorite events, lines, or moments in my own books are. These favorites tend to shift some depending on my mood, and it's certainly hard in many cases to choose just ONE such for any given work. So I thought it might be interesting to describe and talk about up to three from any given work. Paradigms Lost: The first, and probably still my favorite of all, comes at the climax of the section titled "Lawyers, Ghouls, and Mummies", that ends with the simple line:   Verne Domingo had come [ Continue reading... ]

Just For Fun: Superheroes Who Should Not Be Dark

  The recent release of Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice has created a huge amount of controversy, a large amount of it centering on the almost unrelentingly grim imagery of the movie, and most specifically on the depiction of Superman. Throughout my life, there have been several times in which people dealing with the superheroic have decided – in various media – that a superhero can't be done for a modern audience and retain the four-color brightness of their origins. The arguments vary but tend to boil down to a perceived, [ Continue reading... ]

On My Shelves: Mutineer’s Moon

David Weber is probably best known for his Honor Harrington space opera series, but this is my favorite of his books. Colin MacIntyre is pilot of a NASA experimental moon vessel sometime in the not-too-distant future, with a simple-seeming mission: use a new "gravitonic" probe to map the mass distribution of the moon in detail. Unlike prior gravity surveys that merely use the slight variations in mass to give a very general idea of the mass distribution, the gravitonic probe should provide fine detail of structure and composition. But the [ Continue reading... ]

On My Shelves: A Key, an Egg, an Unfortunate Remark

Marley Jacob is a wealthy old woman, known for her charity and eccentricity, a lawyer who no longer needs to practice but who has various unusual clients. She also has a nephew whom everyone – even, with sadness and regret, Marley – dislikes. Aloysius is the classic self-centered, unconsciously arrogant man who has literally never looked at himself in the mirror of the soul. Or rather, Aloysius was that sort of man, and Marley Jacob had such a nephew. Aloysius was murdered, found drained of his blood over a storm grate, and Marley suspects [ Continue reading... ]

On My Shelves: JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure

What do you get when you have a Japanese who's a fan of Western horror movies and pop music and who's been involved in – and come to despise – the fashion industry? No, no, not Kill La Kill, although there's certainly aspects of commonality. What you get is Jojo's Bizarre Adventure. A manga by Hirohiko Araki which began its run waaaay back in 1987, it had a few sporadic one-off OVA/movie animations many years later, but only in 2012 did it begin its run as an anime (which is primarily what I know it from; I've seen pieces of the [ Continue reading... ]

On My Shelves: One Punch Man

IN A WORLD… where monsters and supervillains run rampant, opposed by a variety of heroes and wannabees, there was a man who had reached the point that he did not care whether he lived or died; a monster he encountered was so amused by his "I don't care" attitude that the monster spared him. But then the same monster tried to kill a child in front of him, and the man remembered that he had once dreamed of becoming a hero. After saving the child, he set out to train himself to be the greatest hero… for fun. Saitama – for that was his name – [ Continue reading... ]

Albacon 2016 Convention Report

Albacon (link goes to page for next year) is the long-running traditional SF/F convention located in Albany, NY. The venue has changed over time, as with many long-running conventions. This year it was held in the Best Western on Wolf Road. I've been in attendance since 2003 (and I attended one or two of the earlier ones years before).   I'll get my one gripe out of the way, because I prefer to say anything negative up front. In this case, it's a gripe about something that doesn't personally impact ME, but does impact other people [ Continue reading... ]

Just For Fun: Death Battle!

  "He's Wiz and I'm Boomstick –" "—and it's our job to analyze their weapons, armor, and skills to determine who would win – a Death Battle!"     The idea of X versus Y, or "Who'd Win?" is probably one of the oldest of old ideas. I would be unsurprised to find out that Greek children argued about whether Heracles could beat Perseus. The basic concept of pitting real and imaginary characters against each other took on more energy and interest as various modern fandoms gained in strength, of course, and while you can trace the [ Continue reading... ]