Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Friday, February 18, 2011

Look closely...closerrrr...CLOSER!!!

Leather, Denim & Silver
Legends of the Monster Hunter

1. Spirit In Black by Thom Brannan
2. Antler and Eye by Kate Shaw
3. The Message of the Wolf by Gary Buettner
4. Windigo Dreams by Erin MacCallum
5. Nadya's Nights: Frost by Indy McDaniel
6. Kudzu jesus by Edward Mckeown
7. Fish Out of Water by Liam Cadey
8. Godspore by Marc Sorond
9. The Artist as Wolf by Joshua Reynolds
10. Murder In Thy Name by Elisa Ramirez
11. Ansobosam by Angela Meadon
12. The Vampire Hunter's Requiem by John X. Grey
13. Alderwood and Old Lace by Aleta Clegg
14. The Oni by Heather Whittington
15. Wolf's Paw by Chris Carter
16. The Carpetbagger by A.J. French
17. Reasons To Kill by Shelley Ontis
18. The Fullness of Your Truth by Eric Pollarino
19. Tentacles & Petticoats by Tony Garland
20. The Rookie by Jennifer Barnes
21. The Last Payday of the Killibrew Mine by John Whalen
22. Finally, the Source by Chris Nadeau
23. The Gargoyle's Curse by Mhairi Shaw
24. Weeping Woman by H.J. Hill
25. Two-For-One Chinese Special by Derek Koch
26. Capital Vices by Lisa Branter
27. The DJinn by Lily E. Roberts
28. February - Hunter's Moon by James Ossuary
29. Wolfers by Matthew Baugh
30. Black Horse Trading Company by me

These are not in the order that they will appear in in the book, and their appearance depends on the speedy return of contracts! I'll be sending contracts out over the next couple of days, so get them back as quickly as you can!

Needless to say, this will be a very large book. grin This is by design, as you may be all caught up in reading the stories, misplace your monster hunting tools, and have to thwart a surprise attack by bludgeoning the creature with the book itself. A true monster hunter is never caught off-guard. heh

Ah, sweet acceptance.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Journey to the Machinima Forest.

Facebook has unfolded a world of collaboration heretofore undreamed of even by my enormous brain and limitless imagination. But enough of my humility...

Sometime in 2010, a man who goes by the monicker "Celestial Elf" and I became Facebook friends. I quickly became impressed with his "machinma" films, short features utilizing available free software and music to create sweeping visuals and quirky tales. It seemed a perfect format for a guy like me and so after a few months of back and forth brainstorming, Elf and I hit upon a project that sounded like something we both wanted to do.

Bigfoot.

Titled "The Gift," this first script purported to tell the "real story" about how the so-called missing links came to our world and their role in an ancient alien agenda, my alliteration notwithstanding. It premiered to the top spot on YouTube the day it was posted and has received overwhelmingly positive reviews.

I would have been fine with moving on to a new project but since "The Gift" ended with a cliffhanger, Elf insisted we complete the saga. So, I did what any halfway decent scriptwriter would do...I wrote a ridiculously bloated epic that basically repeated the first installment with more blood and explosions. Hey, I'm an American, what do you expect?

Elf liked the script but nicely told me there was no way in hell the machinima format would allow him to make such a film. Besides, we'd discussed doing a follow-up as a sort of urban myth parody and that was infinitely more attainable within the constrains of what he had available. So, I wrote the story of two inept hunters in Northern Michigan and their attempts to catch the legendary Bigfoot. One of the hunters is snatched and taken back to Bigfoot's cave, where the creature basically recaps the story of part one with a somber tone, alluding to the fact that he won't be around much longer.

Elf liked that draft but was afraid my portrayal of the hunters would offend rednecks. Okay, he didn't say it that way but it's my blog, dammit. Then he told me he wanted to do an allegorical Vietnam story in the vein of "The Deerhunter." Briefly wodnering if he'd gone insane, I read through his comments and rapidly reached the conclusion he was some sort of mad genuis. I rewrote it, still not enirely convinced, until it hit me that the first installment was really about a group of creatures that go to war for what they think is a noble reason and were stabbed in the back as a result.

Suddenly Elf's Vietnam allegory made sense. Feeling freer to create my own thing, I decided Bigfoot should have a rambling monologue not unlike Marlon Brando's in "Apocalypse Now." I forgot I would have to record my voice delivering it.

I have a crappy, old computer and sometimes it acts like a person that doesn't want to cooperate. Uploading the site to record my voice wasn't too difficult but sending it was, as I waited over an hour for the attachment to complete. Growling with frustration, I left the house in the middle of a snowstorm that accumulated nearly six inches in two hours, drove to the library and discovered the file was too big to email. Elf suggested I upload it to a different site. All was well and he called my voice acting "brilliant," yet another moment that caused me to doubt his sanity. But who cared? I was done and headed home!

Then Elf emailed me and said the final lines were not on the file I sent him. The library was now closed and my car decided to gush fluids all over the snow. It took me another hour of off and on trying to send the rest. He loved it as well and thanked me for my steadfast dedication to my art. I think I was just really pissed and refused to let a crappy weekend dominate me.

Elf got the finished product completed and posted faster than I thought possible and I couldn't be happier with the end result.

View it here.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

More from the "This Never Happens" Files.

I've been working on a cannibal horror story that happens to take place in he 1800's and happened upon an anthology called "Dark Deeds in History" looking for submissions. I wrote to the editor to make sure she was still accepting submissions (always do this when there isn't a deadline date posted) and she encouraged me to send it to her. I received the following email a day later:

This is good! Thanks so much! I'll send the contract later, when I get home! (couldn't wait, read it at work...)

I just finished writing and editing the story a few days ago. As I've written previously, perseverance pays off.