In The Flesh is Live on Bookmatchers

A while ago I found a website that matches readers to books. It’s a fantastic idea and Steve, the gentleman who runs the site is just as wonderful as his site. If you’re looking for the perfect book I highly suggest you mosey on over and either fill out his search form or just browse the categories. My latest work In The Flesh is live on his wonderful site. In The Flesh on Bookmatchers

War In Flesh has a Rough Outline

Good news, faithful readers, I wrote up the rough outline for War In Flesh. I promised myself I could take the day off from formatting and rolling out In The Flesh everywhere I can think of and spent an enjoyable part of the day thinking up the story arc for the sequel. I do love the creative aspect of being a writer. While I find the editing tedious and formatting somewhat torturous, the actual imagining and writing is almost relaxing.

I will, hopefully, get my hands on a mac today and get In The Flesh uploaded for iTunes this coming week. Thank you for your kind interest, gentle reader. I will keep you updated and as always I do hope you enjoy reading. K

New Links for In The Flesh

Good day gentle reader. I have just added links to In The Flesh for Amazon and Kobo. This weekend I will see about getting my hands on a mac of some flavor so that I can upload In The Flesh to iTunes. Barnes and Nobel is very difficult and I’m saving that bit of angst for next week. I do apologize to my Nook readers. As always, I will keep you updated and I do hope you enjoy reading my work. K.

In The Flesh Update, Godzilla Reviews on The Geek Girl Project and General News

Well, gentle reader, I haven’t posted too much this week. For that I apologize.  I have been extra busy finalizing the formatting to get In The Flesh ready for print on demand for those of you interested in a physical copy of the book.   I’ll look over the final proof today and if all is as it should be I’ll give the ok and next week sometime I should have a link where you can get a copy.

I also am planning on having In The Flesh available on Kobo and through iTunes.  I need to see what the hang up is over at Kobo and then get my hands on a mac to upload to iTunes.  In The Flesh is already avalible via Amazon for the kindle and other eReaders here.

In other news I was asked to write a series of articles about Godzilla for The Geek Girl Project, probably because they know I’m a squeeing Godzilla fan-girl.  I’m reviewing the movies, starting with the original Gojira and some comic books.

I’ll also do an article on Gatcheman and the upcoming live action movie coming out on that.  Now, keep in mind that I’m not a critic.  I’m a fan.

I plan to start outlining the sequel to In The Flesh next week and it is tentatively titled War In Flesh.

ECCC Recollections, The Final Day

The following article was first posted on my author page on Facebook  March 8th and wrapped up a planned five article series about my adventures at the Emerald City Comic Con.
     Welcome to Friday and my final planned article on the Emerald City Comic Con.  I say planned because I’m already planning a bonus article Monday as I cannot possibly cram every awesome memory into just five articles.  Also I’m planning on publishing my novel  In The Flesh next week barring any more technical difficulties.
     Today, as promised, I would like to tell you about Sir Patrick Stewart.  Th…ere were, as I mentioned in a previous article a large number of people in line to get his autograph.  For that reason we were told beforehand that there would be no customized autographs.  This may sound disappointing but the reality is that the convention people were trying to make sure as many people as possible got the chance to get an autograph and say a few words of welcome or squeeing school-girl fandom.
     Sir Patrick Stewart, as Jean Luc Picard of Star Trek: The Next Generation, I am positive has heard all of the Trekker nerd questions which have been spoofed so well over the years.  “In episode 37, act 2 scene 4 a unnamed red shirt came onto the bridge…”  And so on.  So it is highly unlikely that there is any comment or question he hasn’t heard before.  Or so I thought.
     We get up to see him and he’s smiling very graciously and busily signing photographs and in my 27 seconds I say, “I loved your role in The Eleventh Hour and I’m so sorry there were only 4 episodes.  I wish there were more of them.”  (If you talk fast you can get it out in 27 seconds, just watch your diction.)
Sir Patrick Stewart looked up at me and took a deep breath, clearly caught by surprise. He smiled and said, “I loved it too.  It was the only show I was ever in that got cancelled.”
     He looked like he wanted to say more because here, now, was something interesting that he hadn’t gotten to talk about a bazillion times before but, according to the love of my life who was in line with me; as soon as he got that surprised expression on his face his handlers went to DEFCON 3.  They had to keep the line moving and there was real fear in their eyes that Sir Patrick Stewart and I would get into a rather involved discussion.  My love, who envisioned us being carted away by security, gently urged me to keep moving and the moment was lost.  Alas.  Still, I managed to say something to Sir Patrick Stewart that he had not been expecting and hopefully he enjoyed the little interchange as much as I did.  Ok, probably not but maybe it was a little diversion for him.
     Later we found seats, well actually we just stayed in the seats we managed to score for Dirk Benedict’s panel, to hear Sir Patrick Stewart’s panel discussion.  For the record, I would listen to Sir Patrick Stewart read a dictionary.  His voice and that accent are divine.   There are no words to properly sum him up.  However awesome you think he is, in reality he is exponentially more awesome.
     He’s so charming and gracious.  He said he was experimenting with humor and, touchingly, he is rather uncertain about his sense of timing and style of humor.  It just warmed my heart to hear this huge star, this enormous celebrity share a little of his own uncertainties with us.  There is a quiet strength in that that few people appreciate or even know about until they see it.
     He told us so many wonderful stories while he was on stage.  He told the story of how he got the job as Jean Luc Picard in Star Trek: The Next Generation.  Then someone asked him what it was like working with Sting in Dune and that’s the story I would like to share.  Now my memory is not perfect so some of the little details might be off but I think I remember most of it pretty well.
     Apparently, Sir Patrick Stewart being in Dune was a mistake.  He said that director David Lynch thought they had given the part to someone else.   “Now,” He began the story, “I am not a big follower of popular music.  Mostly what I listen to are more classical in nature.  So we’re on set and everyone is talking about this Sting guy and treating him like royalty.
     One day on the set he and I are off to one side by ourselves and I say, ‘So, you’re a musician?'”
     “And Sting says, ‘yes, I am.'”
     “And I said, ‘Ah, what instrument do you play?'”
     “Sting answered, ‘Bass.'”
     “So I said, ‘Ah, you know there’s one thing that I’ve always wondered about and that is how do you managed to carry
those big things around everywhere.  They’ve got to be heavy.'”
     “Sting said, ‘no.  I play bass guitar.'”
     “Oh, oh, right.”
     “So I said to him, ‘I heard you play in a band.  What’s the name of it?'”
     Sting answered, “The Police.”
     Now everyone in the audience is already chuckling.  Sir Patrick Stewart looks out at us with this delightful, and  I dare say playful, twinkle in his eyes.
     “You won’t believe what I said next.  I said, ‘Oh, you’re in a police band.'”
     Of course the audience erupts into laughter and Sir Patrick Stewart seemed to enjoy the reaction quite a bit.
He went on to say that he was certain there would be no more call for him in any more X-Men movies and then he got the call to do another one.  From that segue he mentioned that he and Sir Ian McKellen along with two other as yet unnamed major stars from this side of the pond would be doing a set of live performances in New York coming up in the fall.   He knows who the other two stars are, he told us, he just  isn’t allowed to say yet.
     He also talked a little bit about his work to combat global violence against women and several other charities he’s involved in.  He’s a very busy and has such a big, generous heart.  He’s such a complex person too and so willing to share of himself.  I can’t imagine the ECCC getting a better keynote speaker and what a simply delightful way to top off three days of non-stop fun.  Ending on such a high note makes me anxious for the next ECCC. K.

In The Flesh Now Avalible on Amazon

It is live on Amazon as of now.  I’m still working to get it formatted for print on demand and Barnes and Nobel.  It should go live on Kobo soon, although the formatting of the copyright is a bit odd.

Right now though you can get your copy of In The Flesh for your eReader here http://www.amazon.com/In-The-Flesh-Children-ebook/dp/B00BUVI7XU/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1363496219&sr=8-1&keywords=In+The+Flesh+zolnoski#_

And worry not, I still owe you the last two articles on my adventures at the Emerald City Comic Con.  I just got busy formatting In The Flesh and didn’t post here.  My apologies.

Recollections of the ECCC Pt. 4 Dirk Benedict

Battlestar Galactica was one of my favorite shows when I was young. It never bothered me to see that same poor Ceylon get blown up in every space battle. I loved the crew, the adventures and the ships. I also loved The A-Team when I was a teen. The common thread and the characters I loved best in each were played by Dirk Benedict. So when I heard he was going to be at the Emerald City Comic Con I was delighted.

Dirk Benedict kind of dropped off the face of the Earth after the A-Team and unlike so many other celebrities I follow there wasn’t much I knew about him. I’ll admit to feeling a bit of trepidation about meeting him in his autograph line and dragging everyone to hear him speak at his panel discussion. I wondered if he would be one of those stars who are so full of themselves they are disagreeable. Although I should have known better. I have never met a star at a con who wasn’t gracious and open and just lovely.

I waited in line for a few minutes to meet Dirk Benedict and of course said the stupidest fan girl thing, which I’m sure is just what he wanted to hear from a middle aged overweight chick but he was so kind and gracious I didn’t get embarrassed until later. Of course I said, “I had a crush on you way back in the day.” What a moronic thing to say. Bless his heart he just smiled and sad, “but you got over it, right?” And just because I never do anything half way, even being an idiot, and I didn’t want to hurt his feelings I said, “not really.”
At the same time Natalia Tena of Harry Potter fame was signing autographs and my daughter really wanted one. Sadly I had to tell her that I had spent all of my money on Dirk Benedict. She got in line anyway to shake hands with Natalia Tena and when we got up there my daughter explained that we couldn’t get an autograph but she wanted to say hi and shake her hand. Well Natalia Tena grabbed a post-it note and wrote down the name of her band and website for my daughter which totally made her day. Seriously, I’ve yet to meet a celebrity who wasn’t just as gracious and kind as can be at a Con.

From there we hurried over to find seats for his panel discussion and caught the end of Felecia Day and Will Wheaton’s discussion which I wrote about yesterday. They were awesome.

Then Dirk Benedict was introduced, preceded by a local military band playing the theme and reciting the intro for The A-Team. It was very cute. They gave him a cigar. This was the moment of truth, Dirk began to speak.

He told us about how he wound up divorced and raising his sons by himself. That’s where he’d been all these years. As a child my father abandoned me so I found this very touching. Not only did Dirk Benedict leave a career in acting to move to the backwaters of Montana to raise his children, you can tell by listening to him that he loves his sons and is so proud of them.

He talked about how his one son wanted to play football (soccer) in the UK because that’s where all the best teams are. He said that some people told him not to take his boy over there because it was just setting him up to fail. And Dirk told us that he took his son (who was not only very successful but a catalyst for a more healthy lifestyle for the other players) to try out because even if he failed, the seeds of success are sown in failure. You can’t have success if you never fail, he told us.

He’s just a lovely, lovely human being.

Then he told us how he got into acting. He said back in college he was in a band and one day they were walking past the theatre, which in the country culture they were in was this mysterious place where strange perhaps sinister things happened. Kind of like a house of I’ll repute, he said of their perceptions at the time. There was a poster advertising try-outs for a musical and being college age guys it came about that he said he could go in there and one of the others dared him to go in and try-out for a part. He didn’t want to do it. But they said they’d give him $5.00 to go in and try out so he did.

He said he went in and he didn’t know what to expect and it was this dark room. He didn’t know if people would descend on him and whisk him off somewhere or what. So he went in and suddenly this voice out of the darkness asks if he has his instrument with him, and he says no. So the voice says, “that’s ok, just sing from one of the pieces here.” They hand him some sheet music. So he does and then he has to read some lines with another person. They thank him and he leaves, collects his $5.00 and forgets about the whole thing.

He continues the story saying that one day they saw the big wig amongst the theatre students walking across the campus and he never spoke to them because he was an actor and they were not. “Well he saw me,” Dirk said, “and started to detour over to them”. He walked right up to him and said, “congratulations.”

Dirk said he looked around to see who this guy might be talking to and it was him! He was wondering what was going on when the guy continued, “You go the lead.”

“What?” Dirk asked still not getting it.

“The lead for the play, you got it.”

“And that’s when I remembered that silly try-out.” Dirk told us, expressing his disbelief even to this day. “So I went over to the head of the theatre department and told him it was a big mistake and to give the part to someone else. They wouldn’t let me out of it. I had to do it. That’s how I got into acting.”

He said a lot of other things, wonderful things about the A-Team and how he liked the good hearted nature of Battlestar Galactic when he was on it. He doesn’t so much like the dark and almost nihilistic nature of the newer version and personally I have to agree with him. If I want to see the darkness in human nature I just look at things that are happening right now in our world. Things like human trafficking, the gang rapes in India and South Africa and Steubenville, Ohio. There is enough darkness in the real world. When I want entertainment I want something that has a goodness to it, something that speaks to hope.

Anyway I’ve nattered on for far too long and I hope you don’t mind, gentle reader. Tomorrow to top off my week of ECCC recollections I’m going to write about meeting Patrick Stewart and how I redeemed myself by asking him a great question. K.

Recollections of the Emerald City Comic Con Pt. 3

This was originally posted on my FB author page on March 6th 2013.  I’m reposting it here for your enjoyment.

More stories from the Emerald City Comic Con. Today I want to talk about Christopher Lloyd whom we saw in a panel at the ECCC and also Felicia Day and Will Wheaton.

There was a time in the latter part of the last century when Christopher Lloyd seemed to be in everything cinematic. His resume is quite impressive. From his timeless role as Reverend Jim in Taxi, to Doc Brown in the Back To The Future trilogy, to Clue, to My Favorite Martian and a bunch of stuff in-between that I’m forgetting he was everywhere for a while.

Not only does Christopher Lloyd have this amazing voice but he has a range to it and to the cadence of his speech that is at once distinctive and simultaneously unique to each character he plays. We listened to him speak and he is just as wonderful in person as he is an actor. He is kind and thoughtful and just a bit mischievous. There is a spark inside of him that comes through in person and I think it is that spark that we all responded to in his films. It also helps that he loves to act. He was asked during the Q&A what his plans were for the future and he said, “Well, I love to work.”

We wanted to get his autograph, and I know it is difficult to believe but I’m not generally a huge autograph person but there were so many just wonderful guests at the ECCC that I got a few. Anyway, we wanted to get his autograph but our only chance was during our wait in line for Sir Patrick Stewart and we didn’t want to get out of that line. We had planned to nip on over to Christopher Lloyd’s line once we got Sir Patrick Stewart’s autograph but something happened. They had to close Christopher Lloyd’s line for some reason. I hope he was ok. I was afraid he might have hurt his hand signing autographs, hand cramps from writing too much hurt. He did come back after a bit but we didn’t have time to see him before going to see Dirk Benedict speak.

Which brings me to my next story and it is about an actress who surprised me in a good way. You see, I had no idea how awesome Felicia Day is in person. Oh, sure I saw her in Doctor Horrible and loved her role and I saw her guest appearances in Buffy The Vampire Slayer but she’d never really caught my attention. I wished her well in her career and she seemed ok but it was at this con that I came face to face with how awesome she really is.

Felicia Day and Will Wheaton were having a panel discussion just before Dirk Benedict was to take the stage, and they went 10 minutes over time (just sayin’). During the Q&A a young lady asked Felicia Day how she managed her career being this kick A** character while still maintaining her femininity. Felicia said (and I’m paraphrasing because it’s been a few days and my memory isn’t quite perfect), “I do what I want. If I wear something sexy it’s because I’m feeling sexy that day, if I wear something that’s more functional it’s because that’s what I want to wear. I play the games I want to play and I may not beat you at Call of Duty (or some other type game the specifics I forget) but I’ll kick your a** at Skyrim.”

At that point Will Wheaton hopped in to say, “if you’re the kind of guy who makes questions like this necessary then F-you.”

It was very heartfelt and very empowering for the girls who are also gamers and who face bullying, trolling and harassment every day because they like things that some, ignorant, people have decided that girls cannot like. We like what we like. I was told forever that I could not be a writer. Not in so many words but in the way I was taught that girls couldn’t like science fiction, and girls have a duty to put the needs and feelings of their men first all the time. That the only acceptable career paths for women were housewife and mother (yes I was raised in the heart of the Bible belt).

Do what you feel passionate about, play the games you like, be true to yourself, everyone. And in the immortal words of Rufus in Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure: Be excellent to each other.

Emerald City Comic Con Recollections Pt. 2: Adam West, Burt Ward and Larry Elmore

This is the second in a series of posts I intend to do about my adventures at the ECCC this past weekend.  Like the previous post this first appeared on my author page over on Facebook.  This one was published March 5th 2013.  To continue with the article:

There was so much nerdish fun that I want to savor the memories and it is really too much for one single post. I hope, gentle reader, that you do not mind the diversion while I write these posts up. I also hope you enjoy seeing a comic con through my eyes.

There were so, so many people I wanted to see and panels I wanted to attend that I had to make some hard decisions. Mike Mignola of Hellboy fame had a panel discussion across from Adam West and Burt Ward.

While I did get a book The Year In Monsters signed by Mike Mignola in the end we chose to see Adam West. Adam West who although is a bit of a sexist is just about as charming and delightful as you could want a person to be. He has this way about him, a way of viewing himself and the world that is just engaging and, I hate to overuse the word, but charming.

Adam West knows how to laugh at himself and he is very grounded. His humor isn’t cruel, it’s more self effacing but gentle, which is to say that he doesn’t put himself down to get a laugh but he makes it clear that he doesn’t take himself too seriously either and that’s a tough line to walk. He pulls it off with aplomb. There is a hint of mischief about Adam West too and that is just as delightful as everything else about him. As Burt Ward said during the discussion, Adam West knows just how far he can push things and he pushes it right up to the breaking point but never goes too far. Also, I could listen to Adam West talk all day. He’s got a great voice and his cadence is as charming as everything else about him.

Burt ward was fantastic. He had a lot of great stories to tell. It appears that he sacrificed his body for the show on more than one occasion. In fact it seems, by the stories, that he was injured in the shooting of just about every episode. Perhaps not that bad but he got hurt a lot. He was very game about the whole thing and seemed to enjoy himself. You could tell he is a great gentleman but he just didn’t have the charisma that West has.

Burt Ward was the darling of the autograph signings though. When people would go up to him to get an autograph he would ask if they had a dog. If they answered, “Yes,” he would give them the pitch for the dog food he’s promoting.

I also spoke to Larry Elmore while he signed a limited edition lithograph of Dragon Mage for me. He was very gracious and chatty. His line moved slowly but it was no issue because he was so fascinating to speak to. I was the first person to mention the trading card set he had done (dating myself quite nicely). He seemed surprised and delighted that I knew of it and he told the following story:

“When I was first approached to do the trading card set I was offered a bit of money up front and then a royalty, a small percentage, to follow if they sold. Now, this was the first time I ever made any real money with my art. They offered me $10,000 for doing the set and it was a lot of money. So I did it and thought, that was nice and maybe I’ll get a couple hundred dollars every quarter from the royalties or something like that. Then I forgot about it until they called me later on and said they were going to send me my royalty check. They said that trading card set sold out the fastest of any set they had ever printed. And I thought to myself, “Wow! That’s great, maybe I’ll get $1,000 for my check.”

Well the representative said, “I’m sending you a check for $30,000.”

I was just blown away! I couldn’t believe it.”

And that’s the story Larry Elmore told us because I mentioned something no one else had. Over the next few days I will write about Dirk Benedict, Sir Patrick Stewart and hopefully Christopher Lloyd. Oh and there was an awesome “Girl on Fire” dress from the Hunger Games cosplayer. She clearly had designed and made it herself but it was fabulous. Alright gentle reader I will leave you with that since this post had gotten longer than I intended.

For those interested in my upcoming book In The Flesh, the editing is coming along nicely despite a few technical difficulties.