Blog Archives

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Comic Books (Crom the Barbarian): Who is Crom the Barbarian? Crom the Barbarian was created in 1950 by Gardner F Fox and John Giunta. The Barbarian, Crom, is a small speed bump in comic book history. Gardner F. Fox and John Giunta take direct inspiration from the Robert E. Howard, Conan pulps. They pen out their version […]

Comic Books (Paint Monk): Nothing could be as close to garbage as the fare served up by the creative team on Age of Conan: Belit, so it was with some trepidation that I purchased the first issue of Age of Conan: Valeria, hoping that Marvel’s next outing might be worth reading. It wasn’t. Just like Tini Howard […]

Science Fiction (Kairos): Congratulations to Analog for coming up with a more concise and even lamer award name than the Montgomery Burns Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence. Then again, that award was created because Burns accidentally emasculated someone. The Astounding Award specifically recognizes emasculation. Cinema (Walker’s Retreat): This is not just corporate fan fiction. This […]

Horror (Bloody Disgusting): The phrase “cosmic horror” conjures up images of massive tentacled beasts that defy all aspects of human understanding. Monsters created by author H.P. Lovecraft, such as Cthulhu, Dagon, and Shub-Niggurath, drive those that see them into madness, driven insane by their pure incomprehensibility. Their massive size, many limbs, innumerable eyeballs, and unnatural […]

Conventions (PulpFest): PulpFest has become a top venue for writers and publishers to roll out their newest titles. Following are some of the books that will be premiering at our 2019 convention . . . Age of Aces Books is a publisher of pulp fiction treasures with a keen eye for design. At this year’s PulpFest, Chris and […]

Culture Wars (Brain Leakage): Unsurprisingly, the debate concerning gender roles in Sword and Sorcery rages on…Morgan Holmes’ latest article on the subject offers a compelling look at the raw numbers, in addition to some more anecdotes and observations about the shifts that occurred in the publishing industry. If you’ve been following the argument with any interest, […]

Cinema (1000 Misspent Hours): Albert Pyun is another one of my great cinematic nemeses; if you watch anywhere near as many low-budget movies as I do, he’s probably one of yours, too. Pyun’s big claim to fame is his nearly sure-fire touch with what ought to be a categorically impossible subgenre, the action-less action movie. […]

Fantasy Fiction (Forbes): The fantasy genre has exploded in recent years with the popularity of hit series like Harry Potter and A Song Of Ice And Fire. Fantasy first hit its stride in popular culture with old, pulp sword-and-sorcery stories like Conan the Barbarian and sword-and-planet fare like The Princess Of Mars. Later, J.R.R. Tolkien sparked the modern era of fantasy fiction […]

Lit-Crit/Culture Wars (Brain Leakage): They always featured their alpha male heroes in exotic locations, getting into fist fights, knife fights, and gun fights. The women were always fast and dangerous. The bad guys were always powerful and ruthless. The covers usually depicted some hard case with a gun, striking a tough guy pose with a […]

Philip K. Dick (Salon): Once considered a cult figure, the science fiction author Philip K. Dick is now recognized as one of the most prescient and powerful writers of the 20th century. His work not only foreshadowed many of the technological anxieties and possibilities of our era, but shaped the sensibility of the sixties and seventies […]

Cinema (IGN.com): The concept of the sci-fi weapon also has its allure. Whether it’s a cyborg hero taking down villains with some kind of crazy blaster, or evil Dark Lords wiping out entire planets with their mechanical monstrosities, there is no doubt that the destructive capabilities of such futuristic weaponry appeal to a certain base […]

Writing (Kairos): Last night I stopped by the Superversive SF live stream to discuss my new book Combat Frame XSeed: Coalition Year 40. My gracious host and the enthusiastic chat brought up lots of tantalizing questions about the mysteries I’ve planted in the series thus far. I addressed those questions and gave additional clues to those […]