Not a Blog

Football, Fire, and Other Stuff

November 5, 2018 at 2:47 pm
Profile Pic

Tomorrow is the official publication day for TEXAS HOLD ‘EM, the latest original mosaic novel in the Wild Cards series.   Grab one from your favorite local bookstore or online bookseller.   If you want an autographed copy, those will be available from my Jean Cocteau Cinema bookshop.

FIRE & BLOOD comes out on November 20.   There are two sources for autographed copies of that one: preorder from the JCC, or attend the launch event in Jersey City on November 19, at Loew’s Jersey in Journal Square.   We’ve sold more than a thousand tickets for that event and the rest are going fast, so act soon if you want to come.   The theatre is expecting a sellout.   Please note: personalizations and other inscriptions are not available either from the JCC or from Loew’s, just straight signatures.   No use asking, I just can’t personalize that many books, it would take forever.   Please understand.

That’s the cover of the trade hardcover from Bantam Spectra above, fyi; this is the edition that is being offered at Loew’s and the JCC.

Many other editions will be coming out on November 20 as well, however.   Some cool covers on those as well.

Here’s the cover for the Brazilian edition:

Here’s the British cover for those of you in the UK, from Harper Collins Voyager:

Here’s the German edition:

 

Feuer und Blut – Erstes Buch von George RR Martin

And this one is the Gary Gianni cover, for the Subterranean Press limited edition:

Speaking of the JCC… our November 12 NIGHTFLYERS premiere is now SOLD OUT, sorry.   We still have seats (and books) available for Lee Child on November 11 and Cixin Liu on November 14, however.  Reserve a book (and a place) now if you would like to attend, those two may sell out as well.

On other fronts… the Giants did not lose this week, because they did not play.  A mercy.   The Jets played, and lost.  Badly.   The score was close, but the game was painful to watch.   The defense played hard and looked good, as they have in several other games, but the offense could not move the ball, and our kid quarterback Sam Darnold threw four interceptions.   Darnold threw too many INTs in college, the biggest strike against him leading up to the draft, and he appears to be repeating that pattern in the NFL, which does not bode well for Gang Green’s future.   I don’t care how good a quarterback’s arm may be, if he throws INTs he will kill you.  Nothing hurts worse than a turnover.   Darnold was hailed as the new Joe Namath, but I would have settled for a new Chad Pennington… Chad was deadly accurate, and did not throw INTs.   Sam needs to stop doing that, or the future will be as painful as the past.   Oh, and what the hell is going on with the center?  All those bad snaps… c’mon, coach, isn’t there another center on the bench?  One who can deliver the snaps into Sam’s hands rather than three feet over his head?

As for the G-Men, Eli is getting a lot of blame, but not all of it is deserved.  Look at his numbers.   He is still throwing for a lot of yards, and Odell and Saquon are both playing great.  Our other receivers cannot seem to catch the ball, however, even when Eli delivers it right into their hands.  And the O line, shockingly, impossibly, seems to playing even worse than last year.   No QB can perform well when he is being sacked on every drive.   There are too many stupid pre-snap penalties as well.   The Giants seem to start half their drives at 1st and 15th rather than 1st and 10.  That doesn’t help.

Oh, I should also mention… HBO has informed me that the Jane Goldman pilot is not (yet) titled THE LONG NIGHT.   That’s is certainly the title I prefer, but for the moment the pilot is still officially UNTITLED.  So… mea culpa, mea culpa, mea culpa.  Elsewise, the pilot is coming along well, with casting falling into place.   I could tell you more, but I am not supposed to.   We also have a couple of other successor shows still in development, but I cannot tell you about those either.   Sorry.   And some exciting things are happening with the Wild Cards television series, but I can’t talk about those.   Nor can I say much about WHO FEARS DEATH, based on Nnedi Okorafor’s wonderful novel.   Hush hush, it’s Hollywood, they like news to come through officially approved channels out there.

That’s all in television.  In feature films, one of my best known short stories is being developed, and another of my best known short stories may soon be under option for a big movie… and my team is doing its best to set up another of my novels with an actor I adore and a director I worship… but those are not yet ready to be talked about either, so all I can do is tease.   Consider yourselves teased.

I CAN plug the Meow Wolf documentary at least.   That will be opening on hundreds of screens nationwide by month’s end, be sure to catch it if it turns up near you.   It tells the whole history of the crazy bunch of wild dreamers who call themselves Meow Wolf, and I turn up in there as well.

I better go.  Lots more to do today.   Believe it or not, I am working hard on a lot of things (yes, including WINDS), even though I am not allowed to talk about most of them.   Eventually, I hope, you’ll all be able to enjoy the fruits of my labors.  I hope…

Current Mood: busy busy

Superheroes v Aces

October 13, 2018 at 9:55 am
Profile Pic

Here’s a cool new video from the Wild Cards event at the Jean Cocteau in August of 2017, wherein our wild card authors discuss their favorite comic book superheroes… and whether their own Wild Cards characters could take them in a fight.

Yes, it took us quite a while to get this edited and on line.   Sorry about that.   What can I say?  We’re busy.

I wasn’t interviewed myself, since I was busy running around herding cats and running the whole shebang.   But if I had been I would have said my own favorites were the Fantastic Four, Spider-Man, Ant-Man, Dr. Strange, and a few oddball titles like the Challengers of the Unknown, Space Ranger, and Cosmo the Merry Martian.   How would my Wild Cards characters have done against them?   Hmmmm… well, depends on the match-up.   Doc Strange could probably wipe the floor with any of my guys, him being the Master of the Mystic Arts and all, but Lohengrin and the Turtle could have given most of the others a good fight, and Popinjay maybe couldn’t defeat them, but he could send them to another planet light years away, which would be distinctly inconvenient for most of them.   Oh, and any of my guys could take Cosmo the Merry Martian.

Comments permitted… but ONLY on superhero death matches, please.

Current Mood: amused amused

An Evening with Joe

March 2, 2018 at 10:56 am
Profile Pic

We had a great fun evening last night at the JCC with Joe R. Lansdale and the premiere episode of season 3 of HAP & LEONARD. Joe brought along writer director Jim Mickle and actor Douglas M. Griffin, and a terrific time was had by all.

The first two seasons of HAP & LEONARD were very entertaining, but if the opening episode is any indication, this third season is really going to kick ass. It’s based on Joe’s novel TWO BEAR MAMBO, for those of you who’ve read the books.

And speaking of the books, we have lots of AUTOGRAPHED Joe Lansdale title available at the JCC Bookstore. Check it out at http://jeancocteaucinema.com/product-category/author/i-l/lansdale-joe-r/

Current Mood: bouncy bouncy

Aces Assemble!

October 26, 2017 at 10:35 am
Profile Pic

Lots of cool new stuff coming down on the Wild Cards front of late.

Earlier this month we had our big Wild Cards event at the Jean Cocteau Cinema, hosted by yours truly. Local New Mexico authors Melinda Snodgrass, John Jos. Miller, Victor Milan, Sage Walker, Daniel Abraham, and Walter Jon Williams were joined by out-of-towners Diana Rowland, Christopher Rowe, Caroline Spector, Walton (Bud) Simons, Mary Anne Mohanraj, Kevin Andrew Murphy, David D. Levine, Leanne C. Harper, David Anthony Durham (and his son Sage), Carrie Vaughn, Michael Cassutt, and… last but not least… the one and only Howard Waldrop, father of Jetboy, the kid who never saw the Jolson Story.

It made for an amazing evening, for those lucky enough to be there. And for those of you who weren’t, hey, no problem. We’re put the whole thing up on YouTube:

After the interviews, the whole WC crowd adjourned to the lobby for a mass signing (which included not only the Wild Cards books, but also their own non-series novel), where they were joined by Ian Tregillis and Laura J. Mixon. The result being that we have TONS of autographed books on hand, the WC mosaics often with multiple signatures. While the supply lasts, you can pick up copies of WILD CARDS, INSIDE STRAIGHT, ACES HIGH, JOKERS WILD, SUICIDE KINDS, BUSTED FLUSH, FORT FREAK, LOWBALL, HIGH STAKES, DOWN & DIRTY, DEAD MAN’S HAND, ACE IN THE HOLE, ACES ABROAD, and many other titles at the Jean Cocteau bookstore http://jeancocteaucinema.com/product-category/author/

We’ve also added a number of new posts to the Wild Cards blog at http://www.wildcardsworld.com/blog/ , with the most recent contributions coming from David D. Levine, Victor Milan, Laura J. Mixon, and John Jos. Miller. Check it out.

((Comments welcome, but ONLY ON WILD CARDS))

Current Mood: bouncy bouncy

A New Season

July 17, 2017 at 11:01 am
Profile Pic

So the seventh season of GAME OF THRONES is underway. I hope everyone out there enjoyed last night’s premiere episode.

Here in Santa Fe, we had an exciting night at the Jean Cocteau Cinema. Maybe a little too exciting… fans began lining up well before noon, and at the end we had to turn a hundred people away. Times like this make me wish I had a larger theatre. Those who did get in seemed to enjoy the show, though, and those who didn’t get in got our special GOT popsicles. We had some nice costumes turn up too, along with barbarians on horses. (I’ll post some pix when they send some).

Seven seasons… that’s still hard to believe. Where have the years gone? It seems like only yesterday we were off in Morocco filming the pilot.

One more season to go for GOT… but with five (5!) potential pilots in development, it seems likely that there will be one or more successor shows along eventually. I’d love to tell you all about them, but then I’d have to kill you. They’re all prequels, though, I let that slip already, and several of them are….

Current Mood: busy busy

Merry Xmas to All, and to All a Good Max

May 22, 2017 at 7:13 pm
Profile Pic

Our week-long M-M-Maxathon concluded on Satuday night at the Jean Cocteau with a staged table reading of “Xmas,” my thirty-year-old unproduced (until now) MAX HEADROOM script. And I have to say, we went out on a high note. We had a sold-out theatre, and the audience seemed to enjoy every moment of the performance, laughing and applauding at all the right places.

After thirty years, I was not at all sure how well my old script would hold up… especially with an audience of Max Headroom fanatics, many of whom had just sat through an entire week of Max, watching every one of the produced episodes. MAX HEADROOM was a really smart show, with some fine writing… tough acts to follow. But most of the viewers seemed to think “Xmas” was just as good as what had gone before, which gratified me no end.

One of the things that brought me back to books in the mid 90s, after ten years in television and film, was the sour taste that unproduced scripts left in my mouth… and in my soul. I was making good money during those years in “development hell,” but I came to realize that a paycheck was not enough. I hated spending months or years writing and rewriting a script, creating a world, a story, and characters I inevitably came to love, only to have some network or studio decide to pass. I wanted my stories told, and I wanted my teleplays and screenplays performed. Scripts are not meant to be read; to come alive, they need to be staged, acted out…

“Xmas,” written in 1987, was actually the first time in my short television career that I tasted the disappointment that so many screenwriters come to know so well. I had been writing for television for less than two years, after all, and up to “Xmas,” I’d had a charmed career. My only previous gig had been on TWILIGHT ZONE, where I wrote five scripts, every one of which was greenlit, produced, and telecast (though, okay, “The Road Less Travelled” got butchered on the way). “Mister Meat” had been a stumble, but I never went to script on that one. With “Xmas,” I went all the way, and the script had been delivered and slated, scheduled… only to have the show cancelled abruptly.

It’s been said that a writer’s characters are his children. If so, then unproduced scripts are a screenwriter’s stillborn children, and I have far too many of them (for my taste, at least — those who have worked longer in film and TV have many more). To have the oldest of those, “Xmas,” brought to life at long last… to hear the lines spoken, to hear the audience laugh… well, it meant a lot to me.

My thanks go out to our wonderful cast of local actors, especially Elias Gallegos, who played the starring role of Edison Carter. And to Lenore Gallegos, who did such a splendid job of putting this all together and directing. And especially to Michael Cassutt, who made this all happen, to “Max Headroom’s Daddy,” Steve Roberts… and to the one and only Matt Frewer, who graced our stage at the Jean Cocteau and brought M-M-Max to life one last time, hilariously.

Everyone had a good time on Saturday night, I think. But no one had a better time than me.

Merry Xmas.

Current Mood: cheerful cheerful

Something Cool

May 19, 2017 at 3:28 pm
Profile Pic

The Jean Cocteau Cinema is primarily is a movie theatre, to be sure. We also feature various live events: music, comedy, magic, burlesque, and of course author interviews and readings. And we’re a bookstore as well, selling autographed copies of the titles from the various writers who have appeared here. If you’re a regular reader of the Not A Blog, you know all this. I’ve talked about all this frequently enough.

One thing you may not know is that we’re also an art gallery… well, kinda sorta. We have two walls in our lobby where we display the works of local and visiting artists, changing up every thirty days or so. I haven’t talked about that aspect of the JCC nearly as much.

But this month we have something very cool and unusual on our walls, a really stunning display of glass swords by local Santa Fe artist G. Michael Smith.

I might not want to go into battle with a glass sword — give me Valyrian steel — but they sure are pretty to look at. Come by and see them in person if you get the chance.

Fun With Max Headroom

May 19, 2017 at 3:08 pm
Profile Pic

The fun continues tonight and tomorrow at the JCC… with me, Michael Cassutt, Steve Roberts, and Max Headroom himself, Matt Frewer.

Mister Meat At Last

May 15, 2017 at 6:10 pm
Profile Pic

Hiya, kids, hiya hiya. The fun continues tonight at the Jean Cocteau with the third night of our Max Headroom M-M-Maxathon. Michael Cassutt will be there once again to answer questions and shine his light into the darkness of thirty years ago, and we’ll be screening episodes four and five of season one of the MAX HEADROOM show, “Security Systems” and “War.”

But that’s not all. For the real die-hards, we have a special treat. For the first (and probably last) time, I will be giving a public reading of the story treatment for my own, never-produced MAX HEADROOM episode, “Mister Meat.”

“Mister Meat” was originally intended to be the fifth episode of the show. There’s no script, however, and certainly no film. I delivered my treatment on November 5, 1986… and ABC promptly drove a spike through it. “Offensive” and “disgusting” were a few of the words I recall.

They didn’t like it.

So if you’re in Santa Fe tonight, come by the JCC and hear what ABC found too shocking to air in 1987. And if you’re not in Santa Fe tonight… well, sorry, you’re out of luck.

M-M-More M-M-Max

May 14, 2017 at 2:02 pm
Profile Pic

The M-M-Maxathon got underway in fine style last night at the Jean Cocteau, with the screening of the original British TV movie, and the American remake of same. Michael Cassutt, who was a member of the writing staff on the show from beginning to end, was on hand to do the introductions and answer questions, and a fine time was had by all… even the young’uns who wandered in with absolutely no idea who the hell Max was.

The fun continues tonight with the screening of episodes two and three. Mike Cassutt will be with us once again, to answer questions and share all the great behind-the-scenes gossip.

And best of all, admission is FREE