Saturday, May 30, 2015

MY Superman Returns.

   Amazingly, DC Comics may have finally done something right. At the end of their company wide crossover, Convergence, they basically undid the CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS, the mini series that got rid of all of the alternate realities in the DC Multiverse. All the old characters exist now, somewhere in their own alternate reality. What I really liked, was that in the final issue of the Convergence main series, it was the pre-crisis heroes Flash and Supergirl, along with the post crisis but pre Flashpoint Superman who saved the day. Not the grim and gritty current crop of New 52 characters, but the old guard.
   Also, during Convergence, DC ran a bunch of mini series featuring the older versions of the DC heroes and though sales figures are still coming in, it appears that some of these sold better than current DC titles.
   The best part? DC says that all these heroes can be used now for new stories and the hell with continuity. I'm all for that. It was great to see MY versions of Superman, The Justice Society, Shazam, Plastic Man, The legion of Super Heroes, etc, back in action. And now it looks like we may get to see them some more. Thanks for the ray of hope, DC. You were always my favorite comics company and it's nice to be able to say good things about you again.

PS. If you've been missing the REAL Superman, be sure and get the two issue Convergence Superman mini series, and watch the Man of Steel wade through the other super beings just like he's supposed to and still be the nicest guy on Earth. Just the way the Kents raised him.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Together Again For the First Time

Drew this today using my Mouse in Paint.net. Conan or possibly Kharrn and Lovecraft. HPL looks a bit worried.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Happy Birthday Manly Wade Wellman!



Today is Manly Wade Wellman's Birthday. If you've read my horror fiction or just spent much time at my blog of my Facebook page then you know what a big influence Wellman has been on my writing. I was very proud to moderate a panel about Wellman and Karl Edward Wagner at this year's World Horror Con, and I was very pleased to see that Wellman is still well remembered and admired by many readers and writers. So Happy Birthday to Manly Wade Wellman. The voice of the mountain still calls to all with an ear to listen.

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

Repairman Jack is Back in FIX


  Kindle Worlds is an interesting idea. Basically Amazon will pay for fan fiction. There are various worlds based on comic books, TV series, and books, and you can write for any of them, publish on Amazon and split the money with Amazon. So say, if you wanted to write a story featuring THE ETERNAL WARRIOR or ARCHER AND ARMSTRONG from Valiant Comics, then have at it.

   Not surprisingly, J.A. Konrath, the guru of self publishing, has set up his own Kindle Worlds, one featuring his signature character Jack Daniels, and a new one featuring Codename: Chandler, a female spy/hit person he created with Ann Voss Peterson. However in Konrath's worlds there's a difference. With other Kindle worlds, you lose the rights to the characters you create to Amazon. They become part of the Kindle World. Not so in Konrath's world. If you team one of your characters with Jack Daniels or Chandler, that character still belongs to you.

   Which brings us to FIX, a brand new story by Konrath, Ann Voss Peterson, and F.Paul Wilson, which teams Chandler with Repairman Jack, hero of a whole series of novels by Wilson. I downloaded this last night, sat down to read the first couple of chapters and of course, gleefully tore through the entire story.

   Chandler works for one of those 'off the books' government organizations that thriller writers are so fond of. She's been sent to New York to find a terrorist who is planning on selling a canister of extremely deadly toxin. Chandler's job? Get the toxin and eliminate the terrorist with extreme prejudice.

   Meanwhile, Jack, who works as a freelance urban mercenary, is hired by an aide to New York's Mayor to retrieve a sex tape featuring the Mayor's daughter. Through various circumstances, Jack and Chandler cross paths and in true comic book fashion, try to beat up each other before teaming up to face a common foe.

   If you're a fan of F. Paul Wilson's Repairman Jack series, you know that it has now officially ended. No more adventures for Jack after the events of NIGHT WORLD. This story, however, takes us back to the early days of Jack's career, before he met Gia, the Love of his life. Thus Jack is open to romance with Chandler.

   Of course a romance between someone who kills when he has to and someone who kills for a living can take some interesting turns. Fans of Jack will see the usual faces and places, but the book is considerably sexier than the average Repairman Jack novel. According to the book's afterword, that's the fault of Konrath and Peterson. It works though.

   This is a fast moving, action packed novella, which barely slows to catch its breath. If you're a fan of the Repairman Jack series, this is a must have, and if you're like me, you'll leave the tale wanting to read more about Codename: Chandler as well. Heck, I might even write a story for one of Konrath's Kindle Worlds myself.

Saturday, May 02, 2015

Farewell Ruth Rendell

Just learned of the passing of author Ruth Rendell. Back in the days when I was reading whodunits hand over fist, Rendell's novels about Inspector Wexford were some of my absolute favorites, I consider her 1971 Wexford book, NO MORE DYING THEN, to be one of the absolute best British mysteries I've ever read. Rendell had the skill of misdirection of Agatha Christie, but her characters were much more complex, and she was one of the first mystery writers to delve into the psychological aspects of not only her villains, but her heroes as well. Rest in Peace, Ruth. You'll be missed.