Something for today…

This struck a chord with me today…

We’re still finding out details, and we need to wait until the facts are in, until we know as much as we can. The one thing we cannot — should not — do is to be afraid. There are other things more important than fear.

Tell someone you love them.

Do something good for a total stranger.

Remember what is important.

There are things more important than fear, and there is risk in everything we do, everywhere you go. Don’t stop living on account of fear. Life is too precious. Kia Kaha, everyone.

The Orville, Con Man, and First Impressions in Comedy

photo by P.J. Schnyder

When it comes to comedy, I like to think I know what I’m doing. MOREVI: The Chronicles of Rafe & Askana, amidst its swashbuckling action and romance, indulged in some well-needed comedic scenes. The Case of the Singing Sword is my homage to mystery noir and epic fantasy, and takes great joy poking fun at both. The Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences offers up intrigue, twisted tales, and cliffhanging moments. There are also moments of whimsy that steampunk allows.

And before my life in between a book cover, I was treading the boards bringing to life comedy from Christopher Durang and William Shakespeare and making laughs up as I went with the good people at ComedySportz.

So yeah, I know a thing or two about comedy.

This is why I was a little disappointed and somewhat troubled by the early reviews of The Orville, a new science fiction comedy from Seth McFarlane. When the trailer dropped, the hype was the The Orville looked more like Star Trek than Star Trek’s upcoming Discovery. Continue reading

One Last Time: Returning to the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences

“One last time
Relax, have a drink with me
One last time
Let’s take a break tonight
And then we’ll teach them how to say goodbye
To say goodbye
You and I”

— George Washington to Alexander Hamilton
Hamilton: An American Musical

PFD_3rd-SQUAREIt’s hard to believe the summer is in full swing, but here we are; and if you’re following any of my social media streams, you know I’ve been busy…

  • A new podcast is in full swing. (I’ll share Episode #010 here when it goes live. Trying a few new things with this podcast.)
  • The Third Edition of Podcasting for Dummies is in the final edits, and both Chuck and I could not be happier. (And it’s been an absolute blast.
  • A new idea is still coming together, and the feedback on it has been overwhelmingly positive.

But after a really hard start to 2017, I thought I had brought my year back on track. Thing is, I was putting off something that I know has been lurking in the shadows—the final installment to the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences.

Continue reading

4 Lessons from Wonder Woman for Writers

 

wonder-woman-2017-5Last weekend, I — as many of my fellow nerds, geeks, and moviegoers also did around the world — made Wonder Woman a record-breaking film. Single-handedly, the Amazonian Princess of Themyscira pulled off a true wonder: an incredible cinematic experience from DC Studios. Guess it really does take a woman to do the job of two men.

But I digress.

Let’s just address the 800-pound Doomsday in the room: Batman V. Superman (where Gal Gadot’s Diana was unveiled) was nothing short of a red hot mess. It made its money back, sure, but so did Star Wars: Episode One, Two, and Three, so please, don’t use that as a dog in this hunt. On account of BVS’ reception, a lot was riding on Wonder Woman. A lot. Perhaps the future of DC’s cinematic franchise.

I’ve had a week to process it and some things have cemented for me about this film: Continue reading

#WednesdayWisdom — A Second Opinion

So you hear me say it all the time in podcasts. “Enjoy the ride.” I picked up this catch phrase from frequent trips to King’s Dominion and Busch Gardens. I’m a roller coaster guy, you see. As life is a lot like a roller coaster, Enjoy the ride…” strikes me as a good mantra to practice.

But don’t take just my word for it…

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Wise words from Captain Jack Sparrow.

Make it a good day, everybody.

Guardians of the Galaxy, Volume 2: A Spoiler-Free Review

guardiansofthegalaxy2
If you are living under a rock, you might have missed the big release at the box office this weekend. Guardians of the Galaxy, Volume 2 has now landed at your local movie theatre, and after its (come on, let’s be honest…you thought it was gonna suck…) stunning sleeper performance, the Marvel Studios’ Underdog of Misfits had one incredible bar to clear. The original took the hardest of comic book nerds by surprise while casual fans of Marvel, convinced this would be the first MCU dud, came out pleasantly surprised and downloading Awesome Mix, Volume One on their smartphones before getting home from the theatre.

Now, the Guardians are back.

So where do I begin? Or more to the point, where do I begin and not spoil the insane amount of fun that is happening in GotG, Vol. 2? There is a LOT to be had, but a good amount of this fun are in the twists, turns, and surprises GotG, Vol. 2 packs within its running time. I think I can give an opinion — a sincere, analytical opinion — without giving anything away, but if I do inadvertently spoil anything for you, I apologize.

schwartzennager

Okay, let’s do this… Continue reading

COVER REVEAL: Unleash by Lauren B. Harris

laurenHoly Hannah in a Helicopter, how did it become April already?

So after attempting to get myself back on track with blogging, quite a few things happened (and yeah, I’m planning to follow up on the blog about the news, news that you know about if you’re listening to The Shared Desk) and I’ve got a few ideas for blogposts bouncing around in my head, but here we are in April.

Back to it, right?

I’m getting back on the blogging horse with a shout out to the lovely lady off to the left — Lauren B. Harris.

“Hold up,” you may ask, “is that Lauren Harris as in she who wrote for The Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences?”

Or you might asking, “Hold up, is that Lauren Harris as in she who offers her vocal talents on Audible.com?”

Or maybe you ask “Hold up, is that Lauren Harris as in Scribe who appears on The Shared Desk?”

To which I say, “Yes, that Lauren Harris.Multi-talented, and even a cover model in her own right. Lauren is one of those super-creatives that I hope to keep pace with.

Well, here’s the thing… Continue reading

3 Tips on Getting Back on Track When Life Knocks You Down

But, Mousie, thou art no thy lane,
In proving foresight may be vain;
The best-laid schemes o’ mice an’ men
Gang aft agley,
An’ lea’e us nought but grief an’ pain,
For promis’d joy!

Tae a Moose
Robert Burns, 1785

 

1000px-Train_wreck_at_Montparnasse_1895January is wrapping up this week, and for me this month has been less than kind. In fact, it has been a right train wreck. When I rang in the new year with friends and family, and celebrated its beginning with a day of great games, good food, and the best of people, I made plans to get cracking on a few major projects that would carry me into the summer. The first project was, of course, Operation: Endgame, the final adventure of Agents Books and Braun. Then there’s the fifth and final season of Tales from the Archives, kicked off on Christmas Day with our Christmas Special. I’ve also got an idea percolating pretty hard in my noggin to the point of where I’m collecting a lot of resources and researching hard how to pull this idea off. All this, and I’ve got a special photoshoot in the works for The Pixel Project and was gearing up for my first con appearance of 2017 alongside Nick Kelly and Robert V. Aldrich.

Destiny-ComeAtMe

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Six Characters in Search of an Author: A Review of Westworld

***
SPOILERS AHEAD!
THIS IS A DEEP DIVE INTO WESTWORLD,
BOTH SEASON ONE AND ITS FINALE.
SPOILERS AHEAD!
***

This weekend, HBO’s science fiction epic Westworld wrapped up their inaugural season.

tomhiddleston-silence

Since Sunday night, I have been working through my feelings about that finale, and about this season…but that final episode of Westworld feels best summed up like this…

hgwells-confused

rreynolds-confused

One more…

Continue reading