Not a Blog

HBO, GOT Smash Records

July 16, 2019 at 2:55 pm
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The nominations for the Primetime Emmy Awards were announced this morning in Hollywood, and HBO and GAME OF THRONES both set new records.  GOT collected 32 nominations, a new record for the number of nominations for one show in a single year.. and by doing so, extended its previous record for the most nominations ever earned by one series, drama or comedy.  And HBO racked up a total of 137 nominations, 20 more than second-place finisher Netflix who came in with 117.

GOT is a finalist in the Best Drama category, and also earned nominations for directing (three finalists out of five), writing, and acting, among many many others.   Of special note is the Best Supporting Actress Drama category, where four of the six finalists are from GAME OF THRONES:  Lena Headey, Gwendoline Christie, Maisie Williams, and Sophie Turner.   A pretty spectacular showing for our amazing cast.

You can read the full list of nominations here:

https://www.cnn.com/2019/07/16/entertainment/game-of-thrones-emmy-nominations/index.html

https://www.vox.com/2019/7/16/20696364/emmy-nominations-2019-full-list-nominees

https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/lists/2019-emmy-nominations-list-see-all-the-nominations-1221226

My congratulations to David Benioff, Dan Weiss, our producers, directors, and all the rest of our amazing cast and crew… those who were nominated and those who were overlooked alike, they all have reason to be proud.   They came together to create the most popular television show in the world, and the most acclaimed, nominated, and awarded series in the entire history of television.   And they did with a fantasy, a genre that previously had gotten very little respect.   GAME OF THRONES changed television, and let us hope that all the fantasy shows that follow — some GOT prequels, many not — will take the torch we lit and carry it proudly.

This year’s winner will be announced in LA on September 22.

 

 

 

Current Mood: bouncy bouncy

Chicago Gets Low

July 16, 2019 at 7:02 am
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Hey, Wild Cards fans — did you miss LOW CHICAGO when it came out in hardcover last year?

No problem, you’ve got another chance.  Our friends at Tor are releasing LOW CHCAGO today in paperback.   You should be able to snag a copy at your favorite local bookstore (and if they don’t stock Wild Cards, find another favorite) or online bookseller.

An editor, like a parent, is supposed to love all his children equally… but c’mon, truth be told, parents have favorites and so do editors.   LOW CHICAGO is one of mine.   Maybe because I lived in the Windy City for several years when I was a starving young writer.   Whatever the reason, this one was a delight to edit, and (I think) a ton of fun to read.   Shared world books are the Rodney Dangerfield of anthologies; they get no respect at awards time (like shared world editors, though imnsho they are way harder to put together than an ordinary anthology).   Which is a pity, because I think there are several stories in  LOW CHICAGO that were worthy of Hugo and Nebula nominations.   But hey, I’m hardly objective.  You are all invited to read the book and decide for yourself.   In the end it doesn’t matter.   The awards are done, but the work remains, and it’s work that I am proud of… as are my contributors.

The lineup for LOW CHICAGO:

“A Long Night at the Palmer House”    by John Jos. Miller
“Down the Rabbit Hole” by Kevin Andrew Murphy
“The Motherfucking Apotheosis of Todd Motherfucking Taszycki” by Christopher Rowe
“A Bit of a Dinosaur” by Paul Cornell
“‘Stripes” by Marko Kloos
“The Sister in the Streets” by Melinda M. Snodgrass
“A Beautiful Facade” by Mary Anne Mohanraj
“Meathooks on Ice” by Saladin Ahmed

Oh, and if you’re one of those who prefers hardcovers to paperbacks, have no fear.   We have plenty of copies of the LOW CHICAGO hardback in stock at the bookstore at the Jean Cocteau Cinema, most of them AUTOGRAPHED… not just by me, but by many of the contributing authors.

Check out all the signed books at:

https://jeancocteaucinema.com/product-category/signed-books/

 

Current Mood: pleased pleased

FIRE & BLOOD Limited

July 15, 2019 at 2:48 pm
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I love illustrated books.   Hey, no news there for anyone who has been reading this Not A Blog long.

Last November Bantam published my book of imaginary history, FIRE & BLOOD, in a lovely trade hardcover edition, lavishly illustrated by Doug Wheatley.   Still on sale all around the world from your favorite local bookstore or online bookseller.

But now Subterranean Press, my favorite small press, is about to release an even MORE gorgeous edition, for the hardcore book collectors out there.   It’s a limited edition in two states, numbered and lettered… with all the amazing Wheatley illustrations, PLUS some brand new original artwork from Gary Gianni, one of the world’s great fantasy artists.

You can read all about it, and place your order, here:

https://subterraneanpress.com/fire-blood

The lettered edition, alas, has already sold out… but SubPress tells me there are still copies of the numbered edition available, for those who act fast.

Good luck.

Current Mood: excited excited

2020 SoI&F Calendar with John HOWE!!

July 15, 2019 at 7:56 am
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The magical creatures of Westeros and beyond come to life in a 2020 calendar inspired by A Song of Ice and Fire, featuring illustrations by acclaimed artist John Howe.

Fantastic beasts are not solely the purview of Newt Scamander. Such creatures also abound in George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire novels—one of the most successful and beloved fantasy series ever written. And who better to bring these creatures to life than acclaimed artist John Howe, who has built a huge reputation for his stunning work in Middle-earth? Here are sphinxes and krakens, sea dragons and ice spiders—a thrilling panoply of creatures both real and legendary . . . and some a bit of both. Now in its tenth year, this annual calendar is a timely addition to a franchise that has continued to grow with each passing year.

12 STUNNING PAINTINGS—INCLUDING A BONUS FOLD-OUT POSTER!

Calendar goes on sale July 30.

 

THIS MESSAGE BROUGHT TO YOU BY RAYA GOLDEN: FEVRE RIVER ART LIAISON

 

Current Mood: cheerful cheerful

More Maltin

July 5, 2019 at 3:29 pm
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For those who missed it…

A video of our event with Leonard and Jessie Maltin at the Jean Cocteau is now available.   Enjoy it at:

A selection of SIGNED books by Leonard Maltin is available from the JCC bookshop:

https://jeancocteaucinema.com/product-category/signed-books/

 

Current Mood: bouncy bouncy

Two Fanboys

July 1, 2019 at 12:16 pm
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Leonard Maltin, a legend among film critics, and his daughter Jessie Maltin were in Santa Fe last week, for a visit to the Jean Cocteau Cinema.   I taped a segment with Leonard for his podcast, and afterward Leonard and Jessie did a talk, a Q&A, and a booksigning at the theatre.  Great fun.

We discovered that Leonard and I sprang from the same roots.   We were both Jersey boys who got involved in fanzine fandom at an early age.   While I was writing superhero stories (Manta Ray!  Dr. Weird!  Garizan the Mechanical Warrior!!!) for the comic fanzines of the 60s, he started his own film fanzine.

You can hear our whole conversation on his podcast, Maltin On Movies http://maltinonmovies.libsyn.com/george-rr-martin

Leonard also blogged about his fanzine days and his visit to the JCC.   You can read the full text here:

We filmed the talk by Leonard and Jessie as well, and will be uploading that to the JCC website soon.

Meanwhile, for all you Leonard Maltin fans out there, we have autographed copies of four of his books available from the Jean Cocteau website — along with signed books by Alan Brennert, Neil Gaiman, Lee Child, Marlon James, John Hodgman, Lisa See, Diana Gabaldon, Carrie Vaughn, Melinda Snodgrass, Robert Jackson Bennett, Rebecca Roanhorse, Daniel Abraham, and many many more… along with yours truly.  Check out the full listings at:

https://jeancocteaucinema.com/shop/

Current Mood: geeky geeky

Shae and Sibel

June 16, 2019 at 5:36 pm
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Never judge a book by its cover, or an actor by the character he or she portrays.

Most of you only know Sibel Kekilli for her portrayal of Shae in HBO’s GAME OF THRONES.   In her native Germany, of course, Sibel is recognized for a wide variety of other roles, including a long stint on the popular police procedural TATORT, the German LAW & ORDER.  She is also a two-time winner of the Lola Award (the German Oscar) for Best Actress for her starring roles in WHEN WE LEAVE and HEAD-ON.

Sibel is more than just a gifted actress, however.   She is a kind and gentle and compassionate person as well, one that I am proud to know… and she is a woman of rare courage.  In these dark and highly politicized times, when the safest course for any public figure is silence and smiles, Sibel has never hesitated to speak her mind, giving of her time, her money, and her fame to help others.   Every time she speaks up, she subjects herself to another flood of abuse, slurs, death threats, and the like… but she persists, nonetheless.

Sibel Kekilli is a true hero.

She has worked for years for Terre des Femmes, fighting violence against women all around the world.

Terre des Femmes

Now Sibel has a new venture: working with PAPATYA to rescue girls (from the ages of 13 to 21) threatened with forced child marriages and abductions.  Sibel has recently used her own funds to buy computers for the girls.   She’s also lent her support to an on-line counseling site, SIBEL ( named after her character from HEAD-ON) to offer advice and help to those who need it.

Homepage

She has my admiration and support.  I hope she has yours as well.

 

Current Mood: determined determined

Talking ‘Bout My Generation

June 11, 2019 at 8:22 am
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I’ve written a lot of things during my career: science fiction, fantasy, horror, various hybrids of all of the above.   And once upon a time, like many writers, I wrote a novel about the times and events I’d lived through… a story about my own generation, the Boomers, about our dreams and our disillusionments.   It was centered on the music.  Of course it was.   Rock n roll was as central to my generation as the Vietnam War, the counterculture, television, and the sexual revolution.   All those things wove together.   Of course, being who I was, I added a fantasy/ horror element.   The resulting novel was called THE ARMAGEDDON RAG.   It was nominated for the World Fantasy Award (but lost, alas) and got some great reviews.   I think it sold about twelve copies, but that’s another story.   Oddly enough, it also opened the door to television and film for me, when a produce named Phil deGuere optioned it for a feature film… (that never got made, alas again)… but that’s another story too.

This post is not about the RAG, not really.  It’s about another generational novel, one that has just been published, written by Lewis Shiner.   Lew is an old friend, one of my original Wild Cards writers, the creator of Fortunato, the Astronomer, and Veronica, among other characters.   He was a mainstay in the early Wild Cards books back in the 80s and early 90s.  His first novel FRONTERA was a Hugo finalist, and he was one of the rising stars of the “mirrorshades” movement when cyberpunk came along.  After that, however, Lew’s muse led him off in other directions.   He drifted away from science fiction and wild cards, and went on to write a number of mainstream novels… about skateboarding, about tango dancing, about race relations, and yes, about rock music (the excellent GLIMPSES, a World Fantasy Award nominee — unlike ARMAGEDDON RAG, it won).

And now Lew has written his magnum opus.   It’s a huge book, maybe five times as long as my RAG… much longer than anything Shiner has written before… but not a word is wasted.   It’s called OUTSIDE THE GATES OF EDEN.

EDEN starts in the 60s and goes all the way up to the present day and the near future.  Along the way it touches on the counterculture, the Summer of Love, the Vietnam War, Woodstock, and so much more… it is, in short, the story of a generation.   Honestly, I really don’t know how Gen Xers or millenials will respond to it.   Maybe they’ll see it as a historical novel, as distant from themselves as a novel of the Civil War.   I can’t imagine a Boomer not responding to what Lew has done here.   I read this in galleys, long before publication, and I find myself thinking back on it often.   Let me give this one the ultimate compliment:  I wish I had written it.   I didn’t, though.  Lew did.

You can read it for yourself by grabbing a copy from SubPress at:

https://subterraneanpress.com/outside-the-gates-of-eden

 

Current Mood: contemplative contemplative

In the Hall!

June 10, 2019 at 5:20 pm
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Very pleased to announce that I am being inducted into the Hall of Fame!

No, not the one in Canton, nor the one in Cooperstown.  Not the halls in Cleveland or Seattle either.

Come October, I am being inducted into the New Jersey Hall of Fame.

The announcements just came out:

https://www.nj.com/entertainment/2019/06/new-jersey-hall-of-fame-to-induct-george-rr-martin-martha-stewart-laurie-hernandez-and-more.html

https://www.njarts.net/uncategorized/southside-johnny-the-smithereens-to-be-among-nj-hall-of-fame-inductees-2/

So… pretty cool, I think.   Southside Johnny, the great great NY Giants Bart Oates and Harry Carson, Peter Benchley, Jason Alexander, and all sorts of other great folks will be joining the Hall with me as well.   And the list of previous inductees is pretty amazing too.  I mean, hey, the Boss!

Thanks to everyone who voted for me.

The induction ceremony will be October 27 in Asbury Park.

Though I’ve lived in New Mexico since 1979, I was born and raised in Bayonne, and New Jersey will always be a part of me.   And now it would seem that I will always be a part of New Jersey as well.   Not bad for a kid from the projects.

Current Mood: accomplished accomplished

Author Events

June 10, 2019 at 9:09 am
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If you’re not fortunate enough to live in the Land of Enchantment, you’ve missed out on all of the wonderful author events we have at the Jean cocteau Cinema.  But of late, we’ve started recording the events for streaming and later viewing.

Here are three of our most recent events, with

— LEE CHILD (Thrillermaster, and creator of Jack Reacher),

— ALAN BRENNERT (from my days on TWILIGHT ZONE, author of DAUGHTER OF MOLOKAI).

— MARLON JAMES (author of BLACK LEOPARD, RED WOLF)

Author Events

Autographed books from all of our featured writers are available from the Jean Cocteau website.

Enjoy.

 

Current Mood: pleased pleased