jetpack_monkey: (Batman - Model of Mental Health)
So that book on obscure horror that I contributed to is out now. Which is great, really. My essay is on the film Alucarda and, since the essays are arranged alphabetically by film title, it comes up first. Again, no problem.

Except that the book has a "Look Inside" preview. And the preview includes my essay, because of its early placement. And I'm glancing over it and I'm seeing every stupid awkward turn of phrase. I suddenly feel responsible for anybody who doesn't pick up the book based on the preview.

I am trying to take a breath and relax, but geez louise, pressure, man.


jetpack_monkey: (Jack Skellington - What Does It Mean?)
I'm traveling on a train to Vividon in August -- 43 hours there and 43 hours back. Exciting! I have some stuff planned to occupy my time. I'm going to put a few choice movies on the iPad and I've downloaded some board games to play with [personal profile] echan. However, I also want to do some reading!

I know my friends' list is fully of savvy book lovers and I want to get some recommendations from you folks. Novels, non-fiction, etc. If it's available for Kindle or in the iBook store, all the better.

Fiction I like: Hitchhiker's Guide (only read the Adams books -- are the later ones any good?), Discworld, Vorkosigan, Dresden Files, Game of Thrones (halfway through book 2 now), 1984, Brave New World, The Running Man, the first Hunger Games book (yes I like dystopia, what of it), Frankenstein, Edgar Allan Poe, Rebecca (du Maurier), Ender's Game, Flannery O'Connor.

Tried getting into Honor Harrington and the military strategy/tech stuff just went right over my head. Might give it another shot.

Non-fiction I like: Books on movies, mostly. More toward the academic/analytical end of things, but given my vidding, I want to start looking at technical stuff related to editing as well. Most of my books are horror-related for obvious reasons and I'd like to branch out from that, although I am still obsessed with genre as a concept and its eternal chicken/egg struggle.

Also, John Green's Crash Course series on Youtube is making me more interested in world history, so if there's any really great reads there, let me know. Ooh and anything on the War of the Roses. I want to compare and contrast it with Game of Thrones.

Comics: Marvel tends to have more deals in the Comics app on the iPad, so I've been reading a metric ton of their stuff lately. I'd like to switch to DC and get some digital trades from the Kindle store. Any really good DC comics or independent series/storylines lately (by lately, I mean in the last eight years)?
jetpack_monkey: (Jack Skellington - What Does It Mean?)
Reading Paper Towns by John Green right now. Nearing the end and wishing I'd had this book when I was in high school. I think it would have helped me with my own Margo Roth Spiegelman type person.

Also, any young adult novel that uses a Walt Whitman poem as a narrative and thematic backbone is a-okay in my book.
jetpack_monkey: (Jack Skellington - What Does It Mean?)
The story of how I got Tigerheart is funny. I was at Comic-Con, wandering through the book area with [ profile] midnightfae and (if I recall correctly) [ profile] liminalliz collecting all the free books we could (and by "we", I mean [ profile] midnightfae). I saw Peter David was signing and I immediately planted myself in line. Peter David wrote some of my favorite Star Trek novels (Q-Squared, in particular) and one of my most cherished comics ever, Incredible Hulk #393, the 30th Anniversary issue with the green foil cover.

Anyway, he had copies of his latest book, Tigerheart, for sale. I bought it and he signed it while I gushed (a little) about Q-Squared and his blog. Then he reached over to a stack of (free) Incredible Hulk novelizations and said, "You want one?" And I said, "Um, sure." And he signed that. And then he reached over to a Tigerheart poster and said, as he signed it, "Here, have a Tigerheart poster." To which I also said, "Um, sure." And then he looked over at [ profile] midnightfae and [ profile] liminalliz and made sure that they, also, had signed Incredible Hulk novelizations.

Like I said -- very strange, but kind of awesome.

Anyway, fast forward to this week. I finished Jim Butcher's Small Favor on Wednesday and I was in need of new reading material. So I picked up Tigerheart. Which is... really interesting.

Third star to the right and straight on till morning )
jetpack_monkey: (Cap'n Jack - Trigger Happy)

The Roomie left me her car to run errands, so that's pretty much what I did all day. First I stopped by Mom's to pick up some packages I had mailed there, including the Night of the Living Dead 40th Anniversary DVD with the Classic-Horror quote on the back cover. Mom was babysitting my niece, who ran over to give me a big hug. It was the cutest thing ever.

After that, I ran to the hardware store to pick up some materials for the Memorial Day Project. Then I spent more time and drove more miles than I'd like to admit trying to find sufficient Testors Metal Flake Ruby Red paint, as the Project requires it in large quantities.

Picked up the roomie from work, dropped her off at the gym. Instead of heading to the nearby Best Buy, I headed into Bookstar, which was a book store that I'd seen a billion times but never gone into. It looked chintzy from the outside and I'd always assumed it was a half-price used bookshop. Nope. It was a Barnes & Noble in everything but the sign on the front and the way the employees answered the phone. Even the little placards over the individual sections said "Barnes & Noble". I ended up spending *coughcough* on some books on digital photography, web design (I'm trying to get a more elegant look for Classic-Horror) and Final Cut Express.


Programmed my new Universal Remote. The old one only really controlled my stereo receiver and my VCR. This one handles everything but the Playstation 3 (which can't be helped because it receives over Bluetooth). I did have to reprogram Every Single Key for the HD-DVD player, because while the box received the signal, it thought I was trying to control a Standard DVD player and would throw up a little message on the front display that said "HD-DVD" instead of, y'know, doing something.

Edited two reviews and one Masters biography. Started working on a new fanvid for Donna Noble set to Oingo Boingo's Just Another Day.

Went to the coffeehouse that night with The Roomie to finish up some other work.

Memorial Day

Woke up early, skipped breakfast and computer to go directly to beginning the Memorial Day Project: painting the pieces of what will eventually be my very own Tom Servo puppet. The Roommate gathered them about a year and a half ago as a Christmas present, but circumstances prevented her from putting it together. Now we've finally decided to tackle this as a team. I have high hopes for its completion before she leaves for vet school in three months.

The Roomie's boyfriend came over that night and we watched Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Movie, followed by Mystery Science Theater: Mr. B. Natural, then Cinematic Titanic: The Oozing Skull, and finally Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla II. Good times were had by all.
jetpack_monkey: (Jack Skellington - What Does It Mean?)
Yeah, that ended up pretty much as I thought it would, with a few twists. I blame Deus Ex for ganking the ending for plot point (although with less cleverness). Still, a damned good read.

Also, I've figured out how to work around the plot similarities in my unfinished novel without altering my basic plot mechanics too too much.

Working on Summer Knight right now so I can continue the Dresden Files and so that [profile] midnightfae will stop pouting about not being able to share plot points with me.
jetpack_monkey: (Default)
  • Write review for Pete Walker's Frightmare (1974)
  • Make decision on new applicant's sample review.
  • Clean apartment (or parts of it).
  • Send Courtney's press credentials to Comic-Con people.
  • Finish Neuromancer
  • Re-start Summer Knight or begin Alien Blood.
  • Pay rent.
  • Feed self.
  • Feed animals.
  • Laundry.
  • Clean room.
  • Hang posters in room.
  • Write second review, title undecided.
  • Finish Shocktober spreadsheet (yes, we're really doing prelim work on October this early).

I'm sure there's more. The clean apartment bit has soooo many subsections, which often have their own subsections. Definitely not getting all of this done this week, but it's a goal?
jetpack_monkey: (Naked Lunch - Writing on the Brain)
So. I finished Ender's Game last night. I totally should've seen that ending coming, but I didn't. I lose.

But. All of this reading has me thinking and plotting and considering. I'm not saying I'm returning to writing fiction again any time soon, but I do rather like the gamut of ideas flowing through my brain right now. Strangely, none of them have to do with Card's concepts, really.

I also started Neuromancer and I'm really concerned that my future-noir novel's central conceit is going to need a complete revision if I stumble onto it while I'm educating myself on cyberpunk.

ETA: I am dumb and did not post about the really BIG news. I bought a new MacBook Pro last night! It's the one in the middle. It's very shiny. The only problem is that the screen does not tilt back very far, which causes problems for those of us whose heads are very far from our laps. I may need to get, like, a laptop lap tray or something.
jetpack_monkey: (Jack Skellington - What Does It Mean?)
So. I'm reading again. Like voraciously devouring literature instead of thumbing through non-fiction. You can thank the girl I'm seeing as I pretty much got the third degree for not having read Orson Scott Card's "Ender's Game." My whole "but he's an asshole" argument was tossed out the window pretty soundly.

This book is So. Awesome. And freakin' hard to put down. I was staggering around like a zombie this morning because I lost track of time reading last night. I should be through the whole thing either tonight or tomorrow.

Spurred on by this development, I went to Borders again last night to grab some more Major Sci-Fi Classics that I'd missed -- "Neuromancer" by William Gibson, "Foundation" by Isaac Asimov, and "Speaker for the Dead" by Card. I also replaced by tattered, well-read copy of "Lord of the Flies" while I was at it. Also grabbed a copy of Card's "Empire," based on a recommendation from the girl I'm dating.

I'm rather pleased by this, really.
jetpack_monkey: (Syd - Doin' Okay)
I've been busy as hell (as per usual). I'm still making updates to restore lost data to Classic-Horror. Currently, I'm in the process of readding literally hundreds of makeup and special effects credits that weren't in the backup. This weekend I'm readding the news stories that the people on my f-list so studiously retrieved from the Google cache for me (I am still in awe of you guys).

Meanwhile, I'm researching the hell out of a movie called "Die, Monster, Die!", which is loosely based on HP Lovecraft's "The Colour Out of Space". Or attempting to, anyway. Despite it being a British production, my books on British horror are surprisingly mum on the subject (probably because it's only a British production because the American company behind it, American-International,started producing movies in the UK for the subsidies). This lack of research material lead to a surreal moment with my roommate, who typically has to borrow from my increasingly impressive library of film books when she's writing up a review.

Me: (stands with hands on hips by bookshelf) Nothing. None of my books have anything useful. What I wouldn't give for a book on HP Lovecraft in cinema. I think McFarland published one...

Roommate: You mean HP Lovecraft in Popular Culture?

Me: No, I think it was specifically film.

Roommate: Oh. (pause) Because I have the one on popular culture.

Me: What? Really?

Roommate: Yeah. One second. (searches through bookshelves, produces what turns out to be an incredibly informative tome on the subject).

I'm still reeling from that one.

Also, I have a cat! She's a five-year-old blue-point Himalayan. I've named her Vajda (pronounced VIY-dah) after Asa Vajda (played by Barbara Steele) in Mario Bava's Black Sunday. Like her namesake, Vajda is a damaged beauty. She came to stay with us as a foster after a surgical operation to take out her ulcerous right eye. She's adorable, mellow, and purr's louder than anything you've ever heard. I'll have pictures once the stitches come out and she's a little more presentable.

...also, I was just invited to a party tonight. I'm never invited to parties.
jetpack_monkey: (Jack Skellington - What Does It Mean?)
As you may or may not know, [ profile] midnightfae and I are in the process of moving. As such, our place has been invaded by boxes.

I'm also on a book-buying binge of late. I picked up some new stuff at Borders today (including an absolutely stunning book that just contains pages and pages of vintage horror posters) and file them appropriately. Then I snapped a bunch of pictures, because sometime in the next few days, I'm going to have to take all these books down and I wanted to preserve the image for posterity.

I've included the pictures below the cut. This is just the bookshelf devoted to my cinematic studies as well as my general writing and coding references (although I've had to pull most of the writing books over the past few days to make room for new movie-related acquisitions).

We're gonna need a bigger bookshelf )
ETA: I didn't mean to give the impression that I wanted sympathy for my books. Far from it. I'm damned proud of this collection. When I saw the breadth of my cinematic library, I had to snap some pictures.

Incidentally, I found another book that I forgot to file, so shelf #2 should be about a book wider.
jetpack_monkey: (The Doctor (5) - Dork)
Geek: Buying this book about Mario Bava by the world's foremost Bava expert for $130 dollars.

Slightly Less Geek: Buying it now so I don't have to pay $250 dollars after August 21st.

Geekier: Bidding in this auction, the spoils of which include a signed and numbered copy of the book (a refund will be given for my originally purchased copy if I win, should I choose), plus the entire book in PDF format, an unreleased audio commentary for Bava's Kill, Baby... Kill!, audio recordings of interviews with Vincent Price and Cameron Mitchell, high-res color proofs from the books, original manuscript pages, an 8x10 original Bava still, and a 1995 Black Sunday calendar signed by star Barbara Steele.

I really hope I win. There's ten available "Bava packages" in the auction and nine bids so far.
jetpack_monkey: (Comic-Con - Can You Geek It?)
I'm home. *collapses*

I need a new bookcase for all the McFarland books I picked up at 50% (or more) off cover.

I need more DVD shelves, too.

And some place to put my TARDIS.

And new legs. I would like some new legs.

I think I'm coming down with something (seriously). Might have to call in tomorrow.

ETA: The most disturbing thing ever )
jetpack_monkey: (Spydaddy - Several Steps Ahead)
Via [ profile] mara_sho:

1. Leave me a comment saying anything random, like your favorite lyric to your current favorite song. Or your favorite kind of sandwich. Something random. Whatever you like.
2. I respond by asking you five personal questions so I can get to know you better.
3. Update your LJ with the answers to the questions.
4. Include this explanation and offer to ask someone else in the post.
5. When others comment asking to be asked, you will ask them five questions.

[ profile] mara_sho's questions to me:

1 - What's the one thing you can't live without?

The Internet. Oh my addictions...

2 - Favourite ice cream?

Haagen-Dazs's White Chocolate Raspberry Truffle

3 - Funniest joke you know - and why you find it funny?

It's actually more of a bit than a joke and it's from Red Dwarf:

Spoilers for Red Dwarf Series VIII )

If I simply say "Do you know what happens when a Tyrannosaurus Rex eats cow vindaloo..." to my roommate, she bursts out into uncontrollable laughter, no matter what the situation.

4 - What's been the proudest moment of your life so far?

Pride and I don't get along. I tend to have it when I ought not to and it abandons me when I'm totally deserving of it. No moments, then, but I'm extremely proud of my website and the progress it's made from a tiny Angelfire page to what it is today.

5 - Is there a book that you will reread time and time again no matter how often you've done so in the past?

1984 by George Orwell. Hands down. Brilliant, brilliant book.
jetpack_monkey: (Willow - Type Away iBook Girl)
Reading novels has been something of an arduous process for me in the past few years. I have so much going on that I can really only grab a page here or there. Even though I'm a fast reader, finishing the book can take forever. It took me something like six months for "A Confederacy of Dunces" (a book which I thoroughly enjoyed and recommend heartily).

So, with that in mind, it was a bit of a shock when I finished "Storm Front" the day after I started it. Mind you, during that period I was suffering extreme insomnia and didn't have anything better to do for long stretches of night, but it says a hell of a lot that I chose to read a novel rather than work on my website or watch a movie.

Thoughts behind the cut )
jetpack_monkey: (K-9 - Affirmative)
Based on hearty recommendations from, um, everyone, I've ordered the first two books in Jim Butcher's Dresden Files series (thank you Amazon 4-for-3 deal, which totally allowed me to sneak in two DVDs). I'll let you know what I think as soon as I know.

Also, because of incessant teasing from my co-workers, up to and including my boss, I've just ordered Tron on DVD. Apparently, the fact that I haven't seen it only makes me half a geek. I'll show 'em. I'm not caving on The Last Starfighter or War Games, however.

*uses the tin dog icon for the benefit of [ profile] brightone*
jetpack_monkey: (Syd - Running Running Running Running)
Good news: NaNo wordcount at 14275 as of midnight 11/4. This means I've officially surpassed my 2003 and 2004 numbers for the entire month of November (I skipped 2005). I'm solidly on my way to winning this year, barring tragedy or extreme silliness.

Bad news: I was stupid and bought a white chocolate mocha around 9:30 tonight and spent the next hour and a half work my way through it. Rough upshot is that I'm still wide awake. In about four hours, I'll have been up for 24 hours straight.

Good news: The coding book I bought about design patterns on Friday is completely awesome. It talks like people learn.

Bad news: It failed to mention anywhere on the cover that it's Java-specific and that knowledge of Java was necessary to work through any of the more complex concepts.

Good news: Returned book and bought another one specifically geared to PHP.
jetpack_monkey: (JD - Amusing)
The of doom goes without saying...

* Watch and review 22 episodes of Supernatural, having seen exactly none previously. 4 down...
* Attempt to contact universal remote manufacturer to see if they can "upgrade" remote to work with DVD player... which is why I bought the damn thing in the first place.
* Work on new C-H design, which has been untouched for two months.
* Update Upcoming DVDs list on site forum.
* Watch Left in Darkness and review.
* Squeeze in another, actually classic film for review.
* Finish Hollywood Cauldron book. Wonder why so many of the (apparently excellent) films listed are not on DVD.
* Select winners for recent Classic-Horror contest.
* Put old desktop monitor in closet for more desk space.
* Attempt to not procrastinate (much).

* Finish new coding project.
* Add more stuff to new coding project development wiki.
* Review quite-a-lot of films for October review marathon on C-H (may have to nix this year due to low staff)
* Develop startling new database-related obsession of some sort.
jetpack_monkey: (Mickey - Boy Wonder)
Discounting not-awesome swag, obviously. I am working from memory here. This list will be updated once I get home and have time to take an inventory.

Purchased )

Free swag list coming soon...

Had a fantastic time. Miss my friends already. My muscles are pleased it's all over, however.

February 2019

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