Thursday, March 25, 2010


American Gods by Neil Gaiman
After three years in prison, Shadow has done his time. But as the days, then the hours, then the hours, then the seconds until his release tick away, he can feel a storm building. Two days before he gets out, his wife Laura dies in a mysterious car crash, in apparently adulterous circumstances. Dazed, Shadow travels home, only to encounter the bizarre Mr Wednesday claiming to be a refugee from a distant war, a former god and the king of America. Together they embark on a very strange journey across the States, along the way solving the murders which have occurred every winter in one small American town. But they are being pursued by someone with whom Shadow must make his peace... Disturbing, gripping and profoundly strange, Neil Gaiman's epic new novel sees him on the road to finding the soul of America.

Well, I finally read a book by Neil Gaiman that I actually liked. I had just assumed that he was an over-rated writer or that I had something wrong with me but I really enjoyed this book. Granted, The Graveyard Book was okay but I had hated Neverwhere. The problem seemed to be little to no real story and being weird for weird's sake (Tim Burton does this sometimes, too). But I did enjoy this story. The main character of Shadow gives us an everyman to pull for amongst all the old god vs. new god madness taking place around him. The mystery plot interwoven throughout the story was also a nice touch. What am I saying? Am I going to read another Gaiman book? Maybe. I've been thinking I'd like to try Stardust. I liked the movie.

Monday, March 22, 2010


I am now selling my art online via Esty. There will be a link on the right side of my blog and gallery pages. Or you can get there by using this link:

If you have time, do me a favor. Go to my page on Etsy and favorite my shop. It means you'll have to log in but it would really help me out. The more favorites I get, the better the shop will do.

Thanks for your support. Visit the shop often and buy lots!

Monday, March 15, 2010


Fangland by John Marks
Evangeline Harker is a producer for a television news show who takes an assignment to go into Romania and investigate a criminal legend, Ion Torgu, to get him on camera. Soon, Torgu accosts her, impersonating Dracula. Like Stoker's tale, Harker finds herself held for months, before she pops up in a Transylvanian monastery as this Torgu Dracula gets introduced to New York City.
A contemporary re-imagining of Stoker's Dracula? Sign me up. Unfortunately, this book was all over the place. If it could have stayed with Evangeline, I think I would have enjoyed it but it jumped around from her point of view to emails from other characters and I just got lost and bored. I hear they are making a movie of this starring Hillary Swank. Perhaps the basics of the story can shine thru and make a decent movie.

Seattle Comicon: The Rest of the Story

There's not much to tell really. Clark and I spent most of the time wandering amongst the tables, perusing the TPB sales and watching for interesting costumes. We stayed far away from the celeb area but did catch a glimpse of Lou Ferrigno and Stan Lee. I talked to Hal Sutherland, an animation pioneer responsible for most of the non-Hanna/Barbera cartoons I watched as a kid. I bought a TPB with a Michael Golden story in it so I could have him sign it. I bought a couple other TPBs on sale (The Compleat John Byrne's Next Men Vol. 1 and Marvel Romance-I'm using this one for my art) Beyond all this, I spent the day snapping photos of interesting and frightening costumes. I didn't realize that they had panels so I missed those. All in all, a fun experience. I hope I can go back next year. If I do, I may spring for the 2-day pass. Why be all geeky just one day when you can make it last the whole weekend?

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Seattle Comicon: The Beat Goes On

Today I went to the Emerald City Comicon for the first time. I've been invited by friends for the past couple years but couldn't go due to work. This year, the Con was earlier so it worked out for me to go. I'm glad I did. It was a blast.
I may write more later but I wanted to tell this story before I forget details. Clark and I had walked around a bit and decided it was time to sit and have a bite to eat. We grabbed our food and tried to find a seat. Finally two spots opened up and we squeezed in. As I was getting settled at the table I noticed the gentleman sitting on my right bore more than a striking resemblance to Sonny Bono. I was afraid to ask him if this was purposeful but I heard him talking about Bono so I figured, "What the heck? You only live once and you don't usually end up next to Sonny Bono at ask already." So I did.
Turns out he was a very nice Bono impersonator named Gary. We chatted for a while about his act and other things. I gave him my card and he inquired about possible religious affiliations. (my card has What Would Jesus Glue on it) I told him that I had been a minister but not anymore. He told me that he had spent 20 years as a minister in the Assemblies of God church but he was no longer a minister either. I asked if he looked like Sonny at that time but he said no. I just thought it would be great to have a pastor that looked like Sonny Bono. Maybe a song director that looked like Cher?
So anyway, we finished our lunch, Clark snapped a quick picture (I'm not eating next to Sonny Bono and not having proof) and bid our farewells. He shook my hand and said, "Remember, the beat goes on." I think I said, "It certainly does."
And that was just lunch.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Made My Day...

On Craigslist, I found a church in Seattle looking to show art in their lobby. I knew my stuff was probably too edgy for them but I thought I'd give it a go anyway. Here's the response I got:

"Thank you for your interest in displaying your work at our church. The staff absolutely loves your work; the only issue is that our more elderly congregants may not appreciate the irony and social critique your work provides. We wish that we’d be able to display your art but will have to refrain at this time."

Wow! She replied with politeness and honesty. You don't know how much I appreciate that. I'd rather have someone tell me my "stuff isn't appropriate but thank you" than have them blow smoke up my butt with lies. I can't tell you how many times I've been told, "Yeah, we want to show your work. I'll get back with you soon." and then never hear back. And before you ask, yes, I do follow up. I just wish people could be honest. I am extremely confident in my work and can take a bit of honest rejection. I'd rather have that than someone stringing me along with false hope.

Saturday, March 06, 2010


The Dead Travel Fast: Stalking Vampires from Nosferatu to Count Chocula by Eric Nuzum
The Dead Travel Fast is about vampires, death, chickens, fear, things that smell bad, the love of a good woman, and germs... but mostly it's about vampires.The undead are everywhere. They're not just in movies and books, but in commercials, fetish clubs, and even in your breakfast cereal. If you look, you'll discover that bloodsuckers have gone from guest spots in rural folk tales to becoming some of the most recognizable bad guys in the modern world. Eric Nuzum wanted to find out why and how this happened. And he found the answer in Goth clubs, darkened parks, haunted houses, and... chain restaurants.Nuzum was willing to do whatever it took to better understand the vampire phenomenon. He traveled across Transylvania on a tour hosted by Butch Patrick (a.k.a. Eddie Munster), sat through Las Vegas' only topless vampire revue, hung out with assorted shady characters, and spent hours in a coffin. He even drank his own blood --just one more step in his quest to understand the weird, offbeat world of vampires and the people who love them. The Dead Travel Fast is the hilarious result of this bloody, gory, and often foolhardy journey. With his unmatched firsthand experience, Eric Nuzum delivers a far-reaching look at vampires in pop culture, from Bram to Bela to Buffy, and at what vampires and vampirism have come to mean to us today.And the blood? Let's just say it doesn't go with eggs.

I heard about this book on NPR. Everyone who knows me well knows that I have always had a thing for monsters. From an early age I was begging my parents to let me stay up late to watch horror movies and voraciously reading Famous Monsters of Filmland magazine. No big surprise that I would want to read this book.
That being said, I enjoyed the read. Nuzum has a "smart-ass" approach to the subject that I appreciate. He didn't take the subject matter too seriously which is a good thing. He did, however, showcase some quite humorless devotees to vampires that were at times funny but, more often than not, pretty scary. All in all, a pretty good overview of the history of vampires and why we are so hung up on them.