Tuesday, November 29, 2005
Saturday, November 26, 2005
Tuesday, November 22, 2005
Spent the evening working on my Storytellers Unplugged essay (to go up next Tuesday) and watching King Kong on Turner Classic Movies. Beautiful print they showed, complete with the opening overture. Still a phenomenal movie after all these years. I'm hoping to be the happy recipient of the new DVD release come Christmastime...
Our daughter Allison is coming home for Thanksgiving and should be home any time now. Yay!
Sunday, November 20, 2005
Last night, went up to the Blue Ridge Parkway with the missus and some friends and had dinner at Chateau Morrisette. They cook real good food and wine there. Beautiful place, good food, great night.
And tomorrow is already freaking Monday again. Ugg. Short week though, and I'm looking forward to Thanksgiving.
Wednesday, November 16, 2005
There's a neat made-for-TV horror flick from 1972 called Something Evil, which was directed by Steven Spielberg (his little-known follow-up to Duel), and I gave my old VHS of it a look this evening. When I was a kid, I considered it the scariest movie I'd ever seen, and it remains an old favorite. Very stylish for a TV movie, it stars Darren McGavin, Sandy Dennis, Johnny Whitaker (yes, from Family Affair), Ralph Bellamy, John Rubinstein, and Jeff Corey. And for fans of trivia, Carl Gottlieb, the screenwriter of Jaws (who also plays the newspaper editor in the film) makes a brief appearance -- as does Spielberg himself. The story centers on the Worden family, who moves into a farmhouse in rural Pennsylvania that just happens to have a devil in it. To have been made prior to The Exorcist, it touches several of the same nerves; the demonic events are never really explained, which adds to its atmosphere of dread.
Notable highlights include a little red dot that cracks the windshield of a car, revealing only a field of solid red, causing a fatal accident; a jar of glowing stuff that makes the sound of a baby screaming; and a pair of red eyes peering out the window of the house, only briefly glimpsed but caught on film. My tape is from an old local broadcast; it's never had an official commercial release that I'm aware of. (Check out Bijouflix for this and other rare titles, though.) It is occasionally shown on the Flix cable movie channel.
Tuesday, November 15, 2005
Felt like utter crap last night, with a low fever, and it carried over to this morning. Stayed home from work, afraid a bug's coming on, but over the course of the day, I've felt a bit better. Mostly I relaxed, but I did finish "The Gaki," which I think turned out right good. I've enjoyed writing a few short stories lately, since I can usually finish them in a relatively short time. Now to find the best possible market for this lil scary feller.
Sunday, November 13, 2005
Spent the weekend at my mom's place in Martinsville, VA the house where I grew up, matter of fact. It's always a joy to go home, especially to take long walks through one of the most beautiful locales on earth. I often walk many miles at a time, sometimes on the streets, sometimes on trails through the woods. Today, I went into one of the more densely wooded areas, where the terrain is quite rugged and there's no trail to be found. There are houses not far away, but the place feels like it's miles from anywhere. Wonderful place to get creative inspiration, and it's got a bit of interesting history behind it. Today, there were literally thousands of starlings in the trees. The woods were alive with them. They'd frequently take off in groups, and it sounded like a tornado passing through. Never seen anything like it in all my years.Friday night, the missus and I met Gina Farago and Glenn & Terry Bane of NeDeo press and had a nice dinner. I used to work with Gina here in Greensboro, and it's nice to see her serious about a writing career. If you haven't picked up her novel, Ivy Cole and the Moon, you really oughta.
Got lots of writing done this weekend. Another good work session or two, and "The Gaki" will be finished.
Thursday, November 10, 2005
Up before the sun to go into the office, short lunch, stayed late...yuck. Put up a few more of Bill Trotter's games for auction tonight. Some bids on a couple of them already. And yay! I managed to crank out a fair chunk of prose in "The Gaki." I can see the light at the end; it'll probably wind up about 6,000 words, though I'd like to bring it in closer to 5K.
Checked out several cuts from the newest Kate Bush album, Aerial. They were okay, especially "King of the Mountain" and "How to Be Invisible." I was a big fan of Kate Bush in years past, and I still enjoy giving her the occasional listen. Don't know that I'll pick up the new one, though; as decent as it might actually be, it still didn't really get the electricity flowing.
Tuesday, November 8, 2005
Finally got email back today; hope it stays back. Lord knows I've missed getting all that spam.
My good friend and most worthy author William R. (Bill) Trotter is needing some quick capital, so I'm selling a bunch of his old strategy board and card games on Ebay for him.
Didn't manage to get a lick of writing done tonight, alas, as I was getting these auctions set up. Bummer, as I had this really kick-ass nightmare last night, bits of which I expect I can weave into "The Gaki." Tomorrow, for sure.
Monday, November 7, 2005
Monday...blah. Long bitch of a day. Road Runner email has been wonky for the last few days, and I haven't been able to receive mail on my damnedrodan account with any regularity since Friday; in fact, I haven't been able to access it at all in the last 24 hours. Peg lost hers for a while over the weekend, and several other people I know with RR mail are having trouble; apparently some major system fuckage going on. With the high cost of cable, it oughta be first-class service more often than it is, but at least they generally issue credit on request in cases like this.
If you've emailed me and haven't heard back, it's probably Road Runner's fault. For now, you can reach me at damnedrodan-at-yahoo.com.
I'm in the middle of reading Matthew Stover's novelization of Revenge of the Sith, and a big ole Star Wars craving got flung on me, so I watched Attack of the Clones tonight just for kicks. It's terribly uneven, but it's got some good stuff in it, and on the whole is an entertaining entry. Needless to say, I'm eagerly anticipating the release of Sith on DVD.
Lots of work yet to be done this evening, so it's back to the mines. ~Hammering...hammering...~
Saturday, November 5, 2005
My brother is a fine musician and songwriter, and his performance in Winston-Salem last night made me smile. The club where he played "The Garage" is a neat little spot downtown, and over a dozen groups and individuals played last night at their regular singer/songwriter event. Some capable and entertaining artists there, to be sure; some talk when they oughta be playing, but all in all, the majority of them put on an admirable show. The missus and I stayed at Phred's place last night, and as soon as I got home today, I set right to work on "The Gaki." Quite pleased with where I see it going. Also received my check for Evermore today, which is a good sign of progress on that front.
Tonight, watched the movie Control, with Willem Dafoe and Ray Liotta, which was decent, though not something to write home about. It was a freebie DVD I got for reviewing flicks for About Horror.com, so the price was right.
Back to satiating hungry spirits....
Wednesday, November 2, 2005
Set to work tonight on a new short story I call "The Gaki," and it's scaring me slap to death. It comes from a couple of dreams I had a few weeks ago that have been sticking with me, almost unnervingly so. Gaki means "hungry ghost" in Japanese, and this spook isn't looking for a big old plate of okonomiyaki.
Tuesday, November 1, 2005
The History Vortex War of the Worlds Web site has posted my story, "Before the Red Star Falls" (originally published in Terminal Fright magazine, issue #6, 1994) which you may find here (and scroll down to "Chapter One: Before the Red Star Falls"). The site also hosts KaijuFan Online, with lots of daikaiju action, including reprints of my Godzilla vs. the Thing filmbook from The Monster Times #42 (1975 my first professionally published article!) and a review of Godzilla vs. Megalon/Godzilla vs. MechaGodzilla from the fanzine Japanese Giants #4 (1978) which still comes out on occasion, courtesy of Mr. Ed Godziszewski of Chicago, USA.
Monday, October 31, 2005
A most entertaining Halloween. At the office Halloween party, I read my story, Now I Lay Me Down to Dream (originally in the Terminal Frights anthology), which pulled in a very receptive audience. Kinda like...everybody, heh heh. Our CFO dropped me a note to tell me he was a Dark Shadows fan too. Nice! (If he doesn't have a copy of Dreams of the Dark, I shall have to send him a notice of termination. Hmm.)
Went to the local big-ass haunted trail, The Woods of Terror, to sell and sign books; moved a good many, which made me smile because now I can afford to buy that toilet paper with my name on it. (Or perhaps a new dishwasher, since ours seems to be heaving its last breath.) Last time out there, got to sign with actor Michael Berryman; this time it was Robert Harris, who played old man Cadwell in Cabin Fever. Hardly one of my favorite movies in fact, I loathed it but Harris is such an enjoyable gentleman to get to know Id be inclined to watch it again just to catch his scenes. Gina Farago was again there with her novel, Ivy Cole and the Moon. She's gonna be going places, so watch out.
Went on the trail with my next-door neighbors, Jamie and Paul Workman, and got a good chuckle out of seeing Jamie get chased by a spook with a chainsaw. A most elaborate setup, this haunted trail, and it was a beautiful night to check it out. Happy Halloween to all.
Sunday, October 30, 2005
Spent a good portion of the day reworking my old short story "Now I Lay Me Down to Dream" to read at the Halloween fest at the office tomorrow. And dang if there weren't more scary movies and beer tonight. Watched Exorcist: The Beginning (the Renny Harlin one) with our horrifying neighbors and chowed down on jalapeno Bubba Burgers. If you don't have Bubba Burgers where you are, you don't know what you're missing. They go great with Guinness stout. Most things do, actually.
All in all, a nice day before Halloween.
Saturday, October 29, 2005
Went over to Fuquay-Varina, NC (don't even ask about the pronunciation) for Fright Fest at the Lazy Lion bookstore. Other writer-types in attendance were Gina Farago, Scott Nicholson, and Drew Williams. The F-V downtown fall festival was going on today, and traffic in the store was none too great. Had a fine time, though, especially sinking some beers with Drew and Greg & Muirae Hill, who run the bookstore. Big fat apology to Drew, though, for failing to reimburse him for a coupla brews. The exhilaration of the moment must've been too much for this ailing old brain.
Stephen Sommerville of Insidious Reflections did a nice interview with me on tape during some quiet moments of Fright Fest; I understand it'll be in the December issue. As long as I come off as only half a moron and not a complete one, I'll be thrilled.
Someone should outlaw U.S. Hwy 55 between I-40 and F-V, though. It's a crime against humanity. Was stuck in one spot there for so long that weeds began to grow around my car.
Today at Storytellers Unplugged, you'll find my essay about computers and bloodthirsty weasels.
Friday, October 28, 2005
Okay, since about everyone and his familiar is doing it, and some have not-so-subtly insinuated that certain other folks ought to be doing it, I'm going to incorporate The Log into The Realm for the edification of the curious. My bio page contains most of the introductory stuff about yours truly, but when you want to find out just how much trouble I've really caused (or gotten into), this is where you'll find it.
Things that are happening, like, now...
I've finally gotten the contracts from Arkham House for Evermore, which have been a mighty long time coming, but this is one dynamite book. So far, all the contributors have been very patient, for which all have my undying gratitude. Bob Smith and I have been treading the line between due diligence and making outright pests of ourselves trying to make sure things progress and we're in the appropriate loop. Don't have a set date for the book yet, but I expect its release won't be far into 2006 (there's the slight possibility it'll make it by year's end, but I wouldn't hold my breath for that). Author contracts are reportedly going out as of today.
Tomorrow is Fright Fest in Fuquay-Varina (near Raleigh) at the Lazy Lion bookstore, and then I think it's over to Mr. Author Sir Drew Williams's place to raise a ruckus. It's okay...he asked for it.
Tonight, Mrs. Damned Rodan and I getting together with the neighbors for an early Halloween celebration, which will feature pizza, beer, and Curse of the Demon, which is my all-time favorite horror flick. Hopefully, many nightmares will result.
A couple of weeks ago, I did a telephone interview with Greg Kurczynski for Grave Thoughts Radio, which I figured would be posted already, but it's not. Hopefully it'll show up soon and I'll drop a link for it here.