Thursday, January 31, 2008

Out of the Shadows Next in Line to be Edited

You already know the rules:
Rule #1: Never mess with his men.
Rule #2: Never mess with the woman he loves.
Rule #3: Never bet against him.

Soon, we'll be adding a 4th: Never mess with his countrymen.

Two heirs of Ezzer.
One throne.
Whose side will you choose?

Okay, I stole that from my website, but it's still cool. I know that many of you have been sending me e-mails wondering when Out of the Shadows: Book II of the Elysian Chronicles will be coming out, and I've got good news! According to the ArcheBooks production schedule, Out of the Shadows is next in line to be edited.

You can click here for the production schedule to keep updated on what is going on.

I'll keep everyone posted on its progress.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Radio Show with Ad Astra Radio In the Works

Now for the big news: Many of you know that I have often mentioned the possibility of doing my own podcasting show. I was about to put feet on the idea when this weekend at FX International, I met Chris West of Ad Astra Radio, an on-line science fiction radio station. They use streaming audio instead of podcasts, and they also have made it possible for radio stations to pick up their on-line feed and broadcast their shows over the air waves instead of just the Internet. (I have absolutely no idea how that works.) After talking with Chris and the head of Ad Astra, we decided that I might do a fantasy-based radio show with them--especially considering I was already in the process of purchasing a lot of the equipment to do my own podcasting show.

I'm excited about this because working with a radio station will make it possible to reach more people than just me doing a podcast--especially a station that uses streaming audio technology instead of podcasting technology. (Podcasting can take up lots of bandwidth--meaning the more successful a podcaster is, the more bandwidth he/she has to pay for.) Ad Astra also will handle many of the things I don't know how to handle, such as editing and cutting sound bites, etc.

This week, I will be asking advice from a few people I already know in radio and working on ideas for two different shows that I will be presenting to Ad Astra later this week, so stay tuned!

FX International

This weekend, I sold and signed books at FX International, a comic book/fantasy/science fiction/horror/rock & roll festival in Orlando, Florida. I met some great fans and some phenomenal artists.
  • I met new author Stokely Gittens, whose book Peter Paul: The Chase Begins just debuted. Stokely and I have actually been friends on MySpace for a while, but this was the first time we met in person.
  • Behind me was comic book/trading card artist Brian Kong. His work is amazing--I can totally see why companies like Topps hire him to create those hand drawn sports and movie cards that you will sometimes find in the bubble gum packs. Brian and I talked during the slow periods, and he taught me a lot about the comic book industry. He's also a Yankees fan, and he had some great pictures of Mickey Mantle, Joba Chamberlain, Derek Jeter, and Andy Pettitte.
  • To my left was Erick Erickson, an artist who creates life-size heads of famous people.
  • To my right was Mark Mekkes, the creator of Zortic--an on-line comic strip. He's also the author of the comic book series Abby's Agency. Mark works for Disney in his spare time, and we had a little chit chat about hidden mickeys.
  • I also got to know science fiction author, Glenda Finkelstein. We had seen each other at other fantasy conventions but never really talked. It turns out that Glenda and I have similar purposes in our writing even though we write in different genres. Glenda is also an associate producer at Final Destiny Productions.
  • I also met and was interviewed by the Alien Warrior Comedian--a comedian who dresses up like an alien (great makeup, by the way) and makes fun of humans. He is actually going to be on the next series of The Last Comic Standing. You may be able to catch the interview on U-tube.

Check all these people out on MySpace by clicking their names:

I also met several other cool people, including a world class juggler and some really great Star Wars fans. (I had lots of fun talking to them.) I forgot my camera this time, so no pictures.

Stay tuned for some really big news coming up...

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Dissed by Roger Rabbit!

I'm currently at FX International, a comic book/fantasy/science fiction/horror/rock & roll festival in Orlando, Florida, and I had a unique experience yesterday. One of the guests, the man who played the voice of Roger Rabbit, approached my table and stared at my posters with interest while I talked with some fellow Star Wars fans. I handed him a sample chapter brochure for A Prophecy Forgotten: Book I of the Elysian Chronicles, saying "Here's a sample of my first chapter"--my line for those who are looking at my table when I can't talk to them personally because I am busy with other customers.

"Ladies and Gentlemen, may I present to you Roger Rabbit," said one of my new friends.

"Really?" I mouthed to her. (I feel uncomfortable pointing out celebrities in a crowd because I'm always afraid they'll be really annoyed with me.) All of us authors dream of one of the celebrity guests dropping by our tables.

She nodded, and we continued talking.

Then, he handed the brochure back to me and said, "I knew I had forgotten something." With that, he left.


On a lighter note, I've heard a bunch of "forgotten" jokes this week....

Stay tuned for Monday's blog, in which I'll discuss all the awesome things that happened and people I've met this weekend.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Why Do We Judge People by Their Looks?

Something interesting happened today. I am currently in Disney World with my parents and my five-year-old niece, Ella. During some down time, I was browsing through some pictures on my computer, and Ella was looking at them. In one of the pictures, I was standing next to two women. One of the women is incredibly nice--a woman who I admire and respect, and one I consider myself lucky to be counted as her friend. The other has some issues, and I don't trust her.

"I like her," Ella said, pointing to the picture of the shifty lady I don't trust much. "She's pretty." Then Ella pointed to my dear friend and said, "I don't like her very much. She's... She looks funny."

I explained to Ella that this woman was really nice and that she helped me out a lot and that I liked her very much. I probably should have said, "Just because someone doesn't look pretty, doesn't mean..." You know the rest. It didn't even dawn on me to say that.

It saddens me that this youngster's natural reaction was to choose the more evil of the two women simply because she was prettier. I guess it make sense--especially being at Disney World. (I have watched way too many beautiful princesses dance around on stage today. For the sake of brevity, I will not go on a rant over the shallowness of the Disney's new theme for 2008, "Where Wishes Come True.") I also wish I was more on-the-ball to guide her thinking in the right direction.

Anyway, I hope that as Ella grows up, she will understand that "pretty" does not mean "nice" and that "ugly" does not mean "mean." I also hope all of us will remember not to make those snap judgments about people because of their looks.

Dragon*Con 2008!

It's official! Dragon*Con has just invited me to return as a guest this September 2008! I'm excited, and currently communicating with the Young Adult Literature coordinator to set up my panel schedule. I will let all of you know what panels I will be on the moment I find out. For those of you hoping to see me in a Gabriella costume this year, sorry... I don't intend to be in the parade. I will, however, be spending a lot of time in the vendor room with authors Tracy Akers and Sandy Lender, where I will be signing copies of A Prophecy Forgotten and Out of the Shadows, books I & II of The Elysian Chronicles.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Events for the Week: FX International

This weekend, Jan 25th to Jan 27th, I'll be signing books at FX International, a comic book, sci-fi, fantasy, horror, and rock & roll convention in Orlando. If you're going, drop on buy and say hi!