Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Detectives, dark magic and quarterly fiction (Kickstart the Week 61)

After a nasty stomach bug, I'm getting off to my week a bit late, but I feel this project is worth a mention even if it is already Tuesday.

The occult and detective fiction have been linked pretty much since the origins of detectives in fiction. (Thanks, Edgar Allan Poe!) But it isn't as often that the concept of the occult detective gets played up in fiction the way it once was. Sure, Harry Dresden and Anita Blake technically fit the bill, but they never come with the sense of impending dread one usually thinks about when the two come together.


Occult Detective Quarterly Presents is a new outlet for the detectives of the supernatural. With several creators already lined up for the first issue, the book looks to clock in at a pretty decent page count as well. Plus, it will carry full illustrations for each story, always a fun way to raise the sense of foreboding horror!

Check it out on Kickstarter and help make this new series a reality!

Friday, December 8, 2017

Great art: Hobgoblin vs. Green Goblin by Ryan Stegman

Ryan Stegman is one of the reasons Marvel keeps ahead of DC in the art department, but like so many Marvel artists, it really feels like they don't know how to use him. He's a great talent however, so when I found his image of a personal favorite of mine, the Hobgoblin, against the original Green Goblin, I had to share it here.

As always, you can check out a lot more Great Art over on the Tumblr. And while you are admiring some great art here, don’t forget to check out some of the other great stuff on the site this week!


What's Up for November 8, 2017

What's Up is a simple post where I give you links to the books, comics, movies, games and/or music I have been enjoying as of late. Feel free to check them out if you would like to enjoy them as well or give your opinions of these works in the comments below (though do try to keep it spoiler free.)




Lazgood's Boys by Jim Starlin | Secret Empire
| Strain | Preacher Season 1 | Reputation

Thursday, December 7, 2017

The playlist of a Templar

Model Winnie Harlow as Sia in Eminem's "Guts Over Fear",
one of the main anthems for Graymalkin. 
When I started the first book in the tentatively titled Graymalkin Chronicles I designed, as I'm apt to do, a Spotify playlist. I already shared one for my succubus co-lead, but I also created one for my Templar hero. He's a lost soul in a lot of ways, so I chose songs that have themes of alienation, redemption and overcoming obstacles. Of course, I've also included a few songs with obvious religious themes as well. Together, it's a very odd hodgepodge but really does help me fully realize the character on screen. Check out the full list below:

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Post-NaNoWrimo, pre-2018 shenanigans! (WIP Wednesday)

It was a crazy November. I wrote the first two-thirds of my new urban fantasy novel, the first book in a series I plan to call The Graymalkin Chronicles. It's been interesting to drop traditional super-heroics for this one, even if my character does have a decidedly superhero origin. Like many characters, Xander Graymalkin's origins were from short stories and comic pitches I wrote back in the 90s while still in high school. And like Lightweight before him, he's vastly changed since that origin. I'm still very excited for this tale to see the light of the day, but my plans are to hold off on publication of most of my work until the second half of next year. I will likely also shop the series around to a few publishers as well.

That move has been a long time coming, but with the closure of Metahuman Press, it feels like the right time to find others to publish most of my works. My hope is to start moving away from self-publishing on all my writing outside two core series.

Those series are Quadrant, which I will talk about more down the line and Lightweight. As I showed off yesterday across social media and on this blog, the next chapters of Lightweight have started as my new short story project. I'll be writing each chapter as a standalone, just as I did with previous volumes. I will likely alternate those stories with other shorts as I go along, but I am hoping to prep a new Lightweight by that aforementioned second half of next year.

I also quietly completed the third story in The Second Life of D.B. Cooper series. This one takes place way later in the continuity of Coop than the previous stories, but does build upon the first story as published in the Pen & Cape Society project, The Good Fight 2: Villains. I'll have more information on the project once I've confirmed a home for it, but I loved coming back to Coop after a couple years away.

Today's image is taken from the Graymalkin board on my Pinterest. It features one of the creatures that will make their presence known in that upcoming book, as drawn by a talented artist named Abigail L. Dela Cruz. Check out her great Tumblr.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Martial art comics done right! (Kickstart the Week 60)

Mike Baron has written some amazing comics over the decades from Nexus to Badger to the first days of the Wally West Flash to odder fair like his mid-90s Hawk & Dove reboot and his epic (yes, really) run on Mr. T and the T-Force. But he's always been an avid martial artist, a fact well known to Badger readers or those that read his little read Kato and Bruce Lee limited series. Now Baron is teaming with artist Barry McClain to introduce a new generation of martial arts hero and his name is Q-Ball.


The story revolves around a guy named Curtis Ball, an expert martial artist that happens to really like fighting with a stick. He's on the run and has to kick a whole lot of ass in the process, all expertly delineated by another martial artist in the form of penciller/inker Barry McClain.

This one looks like a wild ride but still needs some extra push to get it over the hump. Check it out on Kickstarter and lend your support!

Friday, November 10, 2017

Great Art: Catwoman by Jaime Hernandez.

Jaime Hernandez's Maggie and Hopey are in my head as I work on my current project, so I thought I'd pull out one of his somewhat rare super-images for this week's art. Jaime is an amazing artist and he shows it with one of the best Catwoman images around.

As always, you can check out a lot more Great Art over on the Tumblr. And while you are admiring some great art there, feel free to check out my progress at my NaNoWriMo page.


Friday, October 27, 2017

Cosplay Friday: Calypso

We celebrate the Halloween weekend with one of my favorite magical villains today. It's rare to see a character as rare as Spider-Man villain and voodoo priestess Calypso brought to vivid life through cosplay, but I would find it amazing to ever see it done as well as Jazs Lavonne does here.

As always, you can check out a lot more great Cosplay pictures over on the Tumblr. And while you are admiring some great cosplay here, don’t forget to check out some of the other great stuff on SuperPoweredFiction.com this week!


What's Up for October 27, 2017

What's Up is a simple post where I give you links to the books, comics, movies, games and/or music I have been enjoying as of late. Feel free to check them out if you would like to enjoy them as well or give your opinions of these works in the comments below (though do try to keep it spoiler free.)





Succubus Blues | Sheriff of Babylon | Spider-Man: Origin of the Hobgoblin |
Meet the Robinsons | Lana Del Rey: Lust for Life

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Best Character Ever Redux: Leonardo Da Vinci

Da Vinci has been on my mind a lot lately. His legacy plays a part in my current project in development and with that, I decided it was high time to share my old Best Character Ever post about the mythical figure around the man. 



Leonardo Da Vinci’s impact on history is legendary. The quintessential Renaissance Man, Da Vinci did things hundreds of years ahead of his time. But as great as he was as a historical figure, I often think he offers many more possibilities as a figure in literature and pop culture. He’s certainly one I am always fascinated to see in fictional endeavors.

I think I first came across fictional Da Vinci in the film Hudson Hawk. I would have been about twelve when I first saw the legendary box office bomb starring Bruce Willis. But its backstory focused on Da Vinci and the quest to unlock the three pieces of the Philosopher’s Stone the legendary engineer inadvertently made. While Hudson Hawk certainly isn’t a masterpiece of cinematic history, it did instill me with a love for the fictional Da Vinci that has survived for over two decades.

Of course, the influence of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles on my young life at the same time probably didn’t hurt. While Da Vinci never really played a role outside lending his name to the Turtles’ leader, he did get a great role on an episode of The Tick. “Leonardo Da Vinci and his Fightin’ Genius Time Commandos!” is a classic episode of an already great show where Da Vinci forms a team out of a bunch of time-lost inventors.

Image by Dustin Weaver.
More recently Da Vinci came back into the public eye in a major way thanks to some novel by some guy named Dan Brown. While The Da Vinci Code is a lackluster piece of fiction, it has done much to bring the esoteric view of Leonardo Da Vinci to light. This has played out with great pieces for him in the Assassin’s Creed novels and games as well as Marvel’s most recent SHIELD series. Though that book is sadly unfinished, it presented Da Vinci as a time traveling superhero fighting a secret battle behind the scenes of the Marvel Universe.


But most prominently, it leads to his appearance in the Starz television series Da Vinci’s Demons. The David Goyer-created drama focuses on a young Da Vinci (played by Tom Riley) as he seeks to uncover the secrets of the universe while also protecting the city of Florence. It creates a fascinating Renaissance world both compelling and entertaining, albeit one not for young or squeamish viewers.

Da Vinci will play a role in future Quadrant Universe stories as I start to unravel the history of the setting in upcoming books and stories. The universe has a long and storied history that might never all be revealed, but Da Vinci is one of many vastly important characters to that story. While I doubt I will ever make him a central character of any piece of fiction, his place in history and in fiction makes him a key figure I wouldn’t want to ignore even if I didn’t find him absolutely fascinating.

Da Vinci is a massively influential figure in history. Why not share your thoughts on the genius, esoteric icon and genre fiction superstar? 

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

I just made the list!

One thing I always do as I set out to write a new project, especially a novel length one, is a playlist of music to serve as inspiration for my writing. I usually frame this around the feeling of the novel, but with this new project, I'm specifically tailoring two playlists around each of the lead characters.

Soul singer Kehlani is not just a feature on the playlist, but
another source picture in my succubus image folder. 
I've kept no secret about my succubus co-lead of the new novel, so it will be her playlist I share with you here first. It's all conveniently framed up on Spotify for your enjoyment if you have your own succubus-based novel to write (which I'm sure you all do.) Alternately, give it a listen and maybe you'll find a few clues about the character of Aisha as she slowly takes shape in my head.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Succubi and sucky jobs

This image of Suicide Girl Ginary is currently
the placeholder image in my head for one of
the two leads in my November project.
Image copyright Suicide Girls.
It's been a strange couple of weeks. I've in the midst of my final days at my job of the last three years. It's one I have never been totally passionate about, but in recent months I have come to realize the culture of that employer was nothing but poisonous. Thankfully I had a second job in place that could easily become a full time job. Next week, I'll leave behind overnight shifts and the back and issues given me by concrete floors and move into a comfortable job at a local bookstore. While entering the retail field full time in November isn't the best idea ever, I look forward to the free time it will open as I start to rebuild my writing schedule.

As I mentioned previously, I'm setting up for NaNoWriMo right now. With the new job starting on Halloween, I'll have free time open just in time to get working on fifty thousand words for the month of November.

But the move to one job with far more satisfaction in it than two jobs with one being a soul-sucking miasma should free up a lot more time for everything. I hope to use the next month's novel as the springboard for regular writing projects. I have a few ideas already percolating for the days after the novel, but I'm taking baby steps right now.

Anyone interested in joining me for some novel writing in November, can become my writing buddy at the site. My screen name might even be a clue to an upcoming project I have in mind.

In the mean time, I'll be continuing to develop my female lead for the new book, a reluctant succubus in a world far too easy for her to find prey.

What are you currently doing to develop your novel before November? Let me know in the comments or on social media?




Friday, October 20, 2017

Great Art: Ramona Flowers by Bryan Lee O'Malley

We close the week with new-ish art by Scott Pilgrim and Seconds artist Bryan Lee O'Malley as he gives the world a new illustration of the always great Ramona Flowers.

As always, you can check out a lot more Great Art over on the Tumblr. And while you are admiring some great art here, don’t forget to check out some of the other great stuff on SuperPoweredFiction.com this week!


What's Up for October 20, 2017

What's Up is a simple post where I give you links to the books, comics, movies, games and/or music I have been enjoying as of late. Feel free to check them out if you would like to enjoy them as well or give your opinions of these works in the comments below (though do try to keep it spoiler free.)




Second Nature | Wonder Woman by George Perez | Star Wars: Kanan vol. 2 |
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 | Twenty One Pilots: Blurryface

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

That's My Jam 2: Guts Over Fear

That's My Jam is a simple concept. It's where I share the song most stuck in my head currently. It might be new, it might be old, it might be popular, it might be completely obscure. All are presented without commentary, but I invite everyone to share their opinions on the tracks in the comments.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Cosplay Friday: Morrigan

As I talked a bit about an upcoming project with succubus lore in play it made sense to me to share a great cosplay of Darkstalkers' Morrigan, probably the world's most famous succubus character. Cosplayer Kassandra Leigh brings her to life amazingly well with a spot on costume here.

As always, you can check out a lot more great Cosplay pictures over on the Tumblr. And while you are admiring some great cosplay here, don’t forget to check out some of the other great stuff on SuperPoweredFiction.com this week!


What's Up for October 13, 2017

What's Up is a simple post where I give you links to the books, comics, movies, games and/or music I have been enjoying as of late. Feel free to check them out if you would like to enjoy them as well or give your opinions of these works in the comments below (though do try to keep it spoiler free.)




Chris Jericho: No is a Four Letter Word | All-Star Batman: Ends of the Earth | Karnak | Guardians | Twenty One Pilots: Blurryface

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Influential: The strange and important saga of the New Warriors

I just picked up a huge stack of New Warriors back issues and reading them I thought it was more than necessary to revise my original Influential column about the characters from last year.

Image credit: Marvel
New Teen Titans in the early 80s was definitely an attempt by Marv Wolfman, George Perez and DC Comics to transform the young heroes of the DC Universe into the company’s own version of Uncanny X-Men. But while the motivation was obvious, the book became something far greater than what was initially planned. To this day, it is one of the best superhero books in the history of comics.

New Warriors had a similar origin. It came out of Marvel’s desire to have its own team of young superheroes. While the company already had the New Mutants, that team was already well on its way to becoming something very different: the paramilitary unit that became X-Force.

Rage is not only a favorite of mine,
he's also one of the few New Warriors
with an action figure.
Initially formed in the pages of Mighty Thor to battle Thor and the Juggernaut during the “Acts of Vengeance” crossover event, the team consisted of the majority of Marvel’s non-mutant teen heroes (as well as the little used mutant heroes Vance Astrovik and Firestar). Only one member, the mysterious Night Thrasher, was new. (Some rumors say he was originally meant to be Rocket Racer before a last minute change to tie in with the new series.)

Fabian Nicieza, Mark Bagley and later Darick Robertson were stars on the rise when they jumped on the ongoing series that spun out of Thor. Night Thrasher proved to be the linking force of the new team as he brought the young heroes together to fight the evils of the world. But Nicieza and company never forgot that these were disparate young people coming together. And they set out to do great things with the kids.

Nova (don’t call him “Kid”), Speedball, Namorita, Thrash, Marvel Boy/Justice, Firestar, Silhouette, Rage and the ever expanding cast always remained fascinating people even when they were fighting threats large and small.

Ultimately New Warriors succeeded best at being fun and compelling at the same time. The book spent most of its run never forgetting that comics were entertainment. It was always just plain fun.

They’ve tried to bring the concept back a dozen times, but it never quite works, probably because of the horrible damage done to the team at the beginning of Civil War. But as one of my first looks at a teen team in work, I will always look back to New Warriors every time I write about young heroes. Ultimately, the may be a moment in time never to return to the grandeur of their 90s heyday, but for team dynamics, young heroes in a topical setting and all around fun per page, I learned a lot from the great work Nicieza and company did on the book. 

Now Hasbro needs to get on making me a Speedball action figure...

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

That's My Jam 1: Feel It Still

That's My Jam is a simple concept. It's where I share the song most stuck in my head currently. It might be new, it might be old, it might be popular, it might be completely obscure. All are presented without commentary, but I invite everyone to share their opinions on the tracks in the comments.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Prep in my step

As I wrap up edits on one project, I am also deep into preparation mode for my next personal writing project. National Novel Writing Month begins on November 1st and I plan on using it as motivation to start my next full length writing project.

While I have done a little bit of short story work in the last few weeks, I haven't taken the time to write anything of significant length since summer. But Nanowrimo offers me a chance to fix that and I will be hard at work on a new project, one that takes me out of my usual super wheel house. 

I'm sure I will speak about this project more as I start actually put word to screen, but this new work will be my first foray into urban fantasy, a genre with its own traits but one at the edge of super powered fiction already. It should come as no surprise that I have a supernatural tinted character created decades ago that I think would be a perfect fit for the genre, but the transition from aged super-concept to another genre offers a few challenges.

Setting has proved the easiest. I made the decision to set the first novel in my own neck of the woods. Eastern Iowa has a few weird bits of supernatural history. Coupled with a location most people outside the state don't realize is a city of a quarter million and I have a fascinating place to drop my leads. 

This is a great piece by Genzoman, but I blame Darkstalkers for the sudden
need to give every succubus wings.
From there I've been working on lore built around various secret societies and ancient fears. Succubi, incubi, Lilith, Leonardo Da Vinci and the Knights Templar are a few of the touchstones that will be featured in the upcoming work. While I plan to make the story my own, I also don't want to trounce all over standing legend. As a writer, I often get annoyed when someone uses a concept in name only. My goal is to introduce these concepts in a way both true to their "history" and interesting to new readers. That means research though, so I'm deep into that as I write this. 

Prep can become its own evil however, so I specifically opened a window of time for myself to do it in. I want to have a good idea where I'm going with the new novel ahead of November and what it will feature, though not enough that I cannot let the characters surprise me as they go. That is the joy of writing for me and I don't like the research to get in the way when I'm barreling through 50,000 words in thirty days. 

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Great Art: Matt Wagner's Demon

Matt Wagner was a big name on the indies due to his work on Mage and Grendel, but his first mainstream work was on a four issue limited series for DC Comics starring the Demon Etrigan. It's a great work that virtually reinvents the character and sets up a years long run in an ongoing series about a year later. (Wagner sadly only worked on one issue of the later series.)

But Wagner created some fascinating art for the book, such as this fun splash page focused on the sudden split of Etrigan from his human host Jason Blood.

Image via the Daily Splash Page.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Missed the Boat 1: Red Wolf

Missed the Boat is a new series where I focus on criminally under-appreciated works, series canceled too soon or subjects otherwise outside the normal grain of typical superheroes.

I have a tendency when it comes to big two super-books to seek out the smaller books. Sometimes this means I get a trade of a complete "ongoing" series that only lasted six issues. And sometimes these are some of the best books Marvel or DC can offer.

Red Wolf by Nathan Edmondson and Dalibor Talijic is just such a book. Featuring a time (and dimension) lost Native American sheriff first introduced in Marvel 1872 (himself a reboot of both an old western character and a modern hero dating back to the 70s.) But this new Red Wolf is dropped into a modern city of Santa Rosa.

This great Dale Keown cover probably shouldn't
have been a variant. Regular cover artist Jeffrey
Veregge probably did little to help the book's chances.
The story could have been a traditional fish-out-of-water time travel tale, but the creators do an excellent job of building a mythology around the town and the character in the six issues they have. Edmondson clearly hoped for a much longer run with the character, but the swift cancellation of several post-Secret Wars titles took Red Wolf with it.

It's a shame too, as for the first time Marvel seemed to have a credible Native American hero.

Red Wolf: Man Out of Time comes cheap on Amazon, so don't pass up a chance to read this strange single trade of a great series and wonder with me what could have been.



Wednesday, September 13, 2017

An assignment of monstrous proportions

I don't get the stubby upturned arms, but otherwise
the new design is pretty darn cool.
For me super powered fiction is far wider than just stories based on costumed superheroes. Any super powered being doing anything super powered fits the category and I often find that one supernatural element can turn even the most normal character into a larger than life hero. I caught a couple films over the last few days that fit that category.

Shin Godzilla was a fascinating reboot of the giant monster by original creative studio Toho. Produced by the same director as Neon Genesis Evangelion, the movie certainly has more depth than either American Godzilla film and most of the previous Japanese films. Using a ton of jump cuts, it chronicles the Japanese government at war with the invading menace of Godzilla. But they also are at odds with the governments of the world, ready to react violently. The movie manages to be terribly critical of the current Japanese government's slow response in the face of the disaster as well as its willingness to roll over for the United States and United Nations. It makes an interesting dichotomy, even as the film also develops a very very different take on Godzilla as an ultimate evolutionary force. If you like monster movies, this one definitely offers something different.

A bit odder yet is The Assignment, a Michelle Rodriguez film by action movie impresario Walter Hill. The movie casts Rodriguez as a male hitman forced into a female body by gender reassignment surgery. It creates a very strange film with Rodriguez dressed as a bearded man for the first third of the film until a crazed mob doctor takes out her vengeance for the hitman's murder of her brother. The plot gets hairier and deeper as the movie continues, but it manages to both be a very strange character piece and a pretty decent actioner, even if it relies a bit too much on narrative exposition to move the plot along. But it's still a unique film worth a look, especially if you're a fan of 48 Hours or The Warriors.

Overall, the films are pretty fun, so give them a look if you enjoy strange cinema as much as me.

I am shameless enough to also use this as an excuse to post
a hot picture of Michelle Rodriguez as well. 



Friday, September 8, 2017

Cosplay Friday: Mortal Kombat's Kitana

Mortal Kombat has long been a favorite series of mine, but it isn't always I get to share a cosplay as good as this one by Russian cosplayer Evgeniya.

As always, you can check out a lot more great Cosplay pictures over on the Tumblr. And while you are admiring some great cosplay here, don’t forget to check out some of the other great stuff on SuperPoweredFiction.com this week!


What's Up for September 8, 2017

What's Up is a simple post where I give you links to the books, comics, movies, games and/or music I have been enjoying as of late. Feel free to check them out if you would like to enjoy them as well or give your opinions of these works in the comments below (though do try to keep it spoiler free.)




Indigo | Red Wolf | Guardians of the Galaxy by Abnett & Lanning
Shin Godzilla | DJ Khaled: Grateful

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

A few thoughts on Wonder Woman

Big props to the film for just making sure they stopped to
havethis photo actually taken mid-film. 
The DCEU's Wonder Woman is the first modern DC movie to do what Iron Man and Avengers did for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Director Patty Jenkins, writer Allen Heinberg and star Gal Gadot created a Wonder Woman far superior to her comic counterpart.

I suspect Heinberg can take a lot of credit for that. A noted television writer, he took a story by Scott Snyder and Jason Fuchs (with some reported input by Geoff Johns) and crafted a great film script that stayed true to the character while keeping the storyline fresh. While this was his first movie script, he does have a history with comics, writing the excellent Young Avengers for Marvel and the six issue Who is Wonder Woman? run for DC.

Patty Jenkins also has a bit of comic to movie pedigree. While she hasn't directed a movie since the critically acclaimed Monster way back in 2003, she was at one point attached to Thor: The Dark World. She left that movie due to differences with the MCU's creative staff. With this film in her repertoire and The Dark World still sitting as one of the worst MCU movies, it seems she might have taken a wise career path.

But Gal Gadot really brings the film home. An ensemble player up to this point, she shined as the centerpiece of the film. She brought Diana to life in a way no one has quite captured before (with all due respect to Lynda Carter.) She made the character her own, while embodying so many of the best parts of her history.

Clearly the creators (with comic enthusiast Heinberg at the fore front) drew from dozens of DC Comics runs to make this Wonder Woman. From the earliest issues of the character (where Doctor Poison is drawn), to the Perez run (where this version of Ares and the Amazons have their origins) to the New 52's Azzerello / Chiang run (where her secret origin as Zeus' daughter originated). And while all those runs had moments of triumph, the film somehow combines those elements into a whole better than its parts. It's a true achievement by the team guiding the DCEU and hopefully, the first sign of a better future for the Extended Universe.

If you haven't checked it out, I highly recommend Wonder Woman to any super-fan. It's the kind of film it is hard to be disappointed in. You can check it out through digital streaming now or pick it up on Blu-Ray September 19th.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

An almost labor free Labor Day

Last week, I worked way too hard. This weekend, outside a short shift at my second job, I had a full three day weekend and it was a glorious feeling to have time to spend with family. A visit from my brother, a mutual visit to our mom and dad and a whole lot of grilled chicken and brats made up a significant part of my relaxed weekend.

Piskor even gave his first FCBD cover the
Marvel 25th Anniversary treatment.
The rest of my time was spent either with a book or with a movie. I watched a couple flicks I'll talk about more in the next couple days, but I also finished a few books, including the second volumes of the Rebirth Superman and Wonder Woman.

Superman: Trials of the Super-Son was disjointed by multiple stories, but co-writers Peter Tomasi and Patrick Gleason clearly have a handle on what they want to do with the character and his family. Doug Mahnke stepped into the art chores for the majority of this volume, even returning to Frankenstein, Agent of SHADE. It made for an overall fun if not particularly eventful book.

Wonder Woman: Year One continued Greg Rucka's seemingly pointless reboot of the character for the umpteenth time. I found the need to retcon the Azzarello/Chiang history with the book distasteful enough, but the over-wrought path to her full powers and the annoying need to have her unable to speak English for most of the book just seemed like unnecessary additions to an already unnecessary story. I frankly cannot understand why this run drew such praise. It feels like a rehash just for the sake of pleasing a writer, even as several of the retcons he made are being fully embraced by the DCEU. I will sing the praises of Nicola Scott and Bilquis Evely however. Both artists did stupendous work trying to bring to life a rather flat storyline.

The best book I finished however was Hip Hop Family Tree Volume 2. This series is the first I've ever read by Ed Piskor, but he's taken the old Peter Sanderson / Mark Gruenwald tales of Marvel history to heart when he produced this series. Told in the same style as Gruenwald and Sanderson's historical back stories in numerous late eighties Marvel Annuals or the very similar Marvel Saga series, he brings an era of music to life I only had limited knowledge about until I've worked my way through these books. This volume gives the origins of Run DMC, Ice T and others, while also showing the rise and fall of several other talents in the New York Hip Hop scene and beyond. It's compelling, well drawn and makes me terribly excited for Piskor's upcoming X-Men histories from Marvel. Pin ups in the back by the likes of Michel Fiffe and Benjamin Marra just make the package pretty much perfect.

So that's what I did this Labor Day weekend. Tell me what struck your fancy about this long weekend in the comments below or on Facebook.


Monday, August 28, 2017

Too much work, not enough reward

Unforgettable may not have been her finest
work, but far be it from me to ever avoid
an excuse to post a Rosario Dawson pic.
Image credit: Cosmopolitan Latin.
As I continue to work my way back to a regular writing / editing / blogging schedule, I feel it's time to break down some of the walls between real life and the magical faerie world of the internet. After last week's post, I am going to continue my look at my own life on a weekly or biweekly post. So let's get into what's been up lately.

It was something of a hell week at my primary job with about ten hours of overtime collected there on top of my regular sixteen hour side job at the bookstore. The kids went back to school on Wednesday with a bunch of half days which sent my sleeping schedule completely out of wack as well. Coupled with the final move of everything from storage into the new house and it was just too much all at once.

I ended up feeling like rotten skunk garbage by Sunday afternoon. My already troubled left ankle gave out on me and so I ended up missing a night of work. But I'm mending now as I hopefully move into a couple of easier weeks with Labor Day approaching.

Sadly, all that business didn't leave much time to do anything. I finally watched Logan and caught the weird Rosario Dawson / Katherine Heigl film Unforgettable, and I read an old Super Spy graphic novel by Matt Kindt. None were bad, but I didn't think any of them were really as good as I hoped they would be. That was most of the limited free time I had available to me in the week, but I've got several other novels, graphic novels and movies to work my way through in the next few days.

I did get a bit more editing done on the current projects. I'm moving forward nicely with Teel James Glenn's Gunmaster with Dino Force waiting in the wings. I've still not sat down to get quite as into my own writing as I would like, but hopefully in the next few days I'll start that process flowing as well.

With that said, I've got way too much work to do, so let's get on with it!

Monday, August 21, 2017

Where I've been, or when life comes with no lemonade

This blog has sat fallow for way too long now. After finally getting things up to a regular schedule, life decided to get in the way of everything. Here's a quick rundown of everything that's went down.
  • Left one house. Stuck in a no-tell hotel for a little over a month until the next was ready. 
  • Picked up a second part time job, pushing my work week to nearly 60 hours.
  • Started having seriously bowel pain and bleeding.
  • Went through one colonoscopy, bled even more and went through a second emergency colonoscopy the next day. Spent twenty-four hours in the ICU and another five days waiting to learn I was (thankfully) cancer free.
  • Found out on the same day I learned I was cancer free that my father-in-law had terminal cancer and attended his funeral two weeks later. 
All in all, it's pretty much been the most disastrous summer I've experienced. And I've had some damn rough summers as of late.

Right now, we're about half moved into a new house with the majority of our stuff still stuck in storage. Coupled with the long work weeks and the storm of awfulness, anxiety and depression, it's been challenging to accomplish anything.

But I am hoping to change that in August. I've got two editorial projects in the works now (Pulpsploitation: The Gunmaster and Dino Force.) They will bring an end to my Metahuman Press label, at least as a full-fledged micro-press. At the current time, I do not have it in me to continue publishing and writing. With that in mind, it seemed clear the editing would have to give.

I'm far from done creating nor will I completey give up on new projects with other writers. But I will be looking into a publishing partner for future projects in the near future.

In the mean time, I will continue to blog here and there, update this with things I like and things I think you should like.

Just keep living life. We've only got a finite time and I for one plan on living mine to the fullest.

Friday, June 30, 2017

Great art: Rulah by Christina Marie Lacey

We close out today with a Teen Titans style take on the aforementioned Rulah by the Christina Marie Lacey, a.k.a. Glee-chan. Definitely a very different take but still lots of fun!

As always, you can check out a lot more Great Art over on the Tumblr. And while you are admiring some great art here, don’t forget to check out some of the other great stuff on SuperPoweredFiction.com this week!


What's up for June 30, 2017

What's Up is a simple post where I give you links to the books, comics, movies, games and/or music I have been enjoying as of late. Feel free to check them out if you would like to enjoy them as well or give your opinions of these works in the comments below (though do try to keep it spoiler free.)




The Dresden Files: Storm Front | Aquaman: The Drowning | Punisher: Black and White | Harry Potter & The Half-Blood Prince | Bionic

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Rise of Rulah reviewed!

A classic Rulah cover by the amazing
Matt Baker. 
I grew up with a fascination for jungle heroes. It was a strange fascination, built on the back of many a mediocre Tarzan film. You see, in small town Iowa back in the 80s, it wasn't easy to find copies of Edgar Rice Burroughs novels. Nor were many jungle characters appearing in comics. (Marvel's Ka-Zar book was canceled just as I got into reading comics with G.I. Joe and Transformers.)

But I loved them, conceptually at least. Every Tarzan film I saw from the Johnny Weissmuller classics to the long winded Greystoke, made me think I could do a jungle hero better.

Twenty years later, I made my attempt with a revival of a classic public domain jungle queen. The short story "The Rise of Rulah" revived Rulah, Jungle Goddess, and remains one of my favorite short stories.

Happily, Amazon reader GePop seems to agree. He wrote of my work in his review:
A good, quick read, with a nice quasi-realistic (well, as realistic as this premise can hope to get) explanation of the origin of the white jungle goddess. Good fun, and it rings all sorts of nostalgic bells. I'd like to see additional Rulah stories from this author.
GePop will be happy to know more Rulah stories are in the works. I have no timetable for their release right at this moment, but I am in the planning stages of her return adventure. I have a lot of stories to tell about the character and a lot more weird supporting cast members to develop.

In the mean time, why not check out my Rulah tale right now over on Amazon or Smashwords.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Gandhi was like that! (Kickstart the Week 59)

What if Gandhi's peaceful facade was just his way of avoiding unleashing the monstrous rage beast inside him?


Welcome to the world of Gandhi: The Beast Within. The new graphic novel by Jason Michalski and Antonio Rojo looks to miss hilarity with hijinx as Gandhi goes head to head with none other than Hitler himself.

This looks like a great one for fans of Atomic Robo or just general fans of pure awesome. With six days left, it's just over 50% funded, so head on over to Kickstarter and give it your support.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Have Gun, Will Edit (WIP Wednesday)

Original Pulpsploitation cover by Nik Poliwko.
Not a lot has changed since my last WIP Wednesday update. Writing wise I'm still slowly working through my Moon Chopper story for an upcoming 70s era anthology.

Editing wise, I'm back hard at work on the first Gunmaster novel by Teel James Glenn. This will be the first Pulpsploitation novel to come following the release of the original anthology a couple years ago. Hopefully it will not be the last, as I have plans for more with my own Airboy feature in the future and I've already solicited input by a few other writers and contributors.

That's it for this time around. My hopes are to finish both those projects by the end of the month, which will mean a very new WIP Wednesday next time around!


Friday, June 16, 2017

Cosplay Friday: Shanna the She-Devil

The Jungle Queen is a gimmick nearly as old as comics, but Shanna made the concept part of an extended universe. She's not a character with a ton of great cosplays, but this one makes up for that!

As always, you can check out a lot more great Cosplay pictures over on the Tumblr. And while you are admiring some great cosplay here, don’t forget to check out some of the other great stuff on SuperPoweredFiction.com this week!


What's Up for June 16, 2017

What's Up is a simple post where I give you links to the books, comics, movies, games and/or music I have been enjoying as of late. Feel free to check them out if you would like to enjoy them as well or give your opinions of these works in the comments below (though do try to keep it spoiler free.)




The Dresden Files: Storm Front | Howling Commandos of S.H.I.E.L.D. | Crimson Volume 1 | Ultraviolence

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Please feed your independent author


The struggle of being any kind of small press writer, publisher or businessman is always the fight to get more eyes on the work. I have been publishing my own work for years now, but growing the audience has always been my greatest challenge.

First, thank you for following me or reading this blog. But if you enjoy my work, the biggest request I can make to you as a fan is to please head to Amazon and leave a review of my work. Every review helps bring more eyes to the work and every new eye helps makes it easier for me to sell books.

Don't get me wrong, selling books isn't the be all and end all of why I write. I can't imagine not sharing my creations with the world. But the more profitable my writing becomes, the more likely I can focus more of each day on the act of creation.

So please head over to my Amazon Author page, find my books you've read and give them a review.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Cosplay Friday: Harley Quinn

Harley Quinn may be the easiest cosplay ever to find on the internet, but few cosplayers ever really make her their own. Rachel Nycole is an exception to the rule as she truly embodies the character in this and several other shots on her DeviantArt. Harley's been on my mind a bit lately, as I have spent a bit of time of late trying to understand her sudden rise to popularity.

As always, you can check out a lot more great Cosplay pictures over on the Tumblr. And while you are admiring some great cosplay here, don’t forget to check out some of the other great stuff on SuperPoweredFiction.com this week!


What's Up for June 9, 2017

What's Up is a simple post where I give you links to the books, comics, movies, games and/or music I have been enjoying as of late. Feel free to check them out if you would like to enjoy them as well or give your opinions of these works in the comments below (though do try to keep it spoiler free.)





Countdown | Nightwing: Better Than Batman | Star Wars: Kanan | Moana | We Are Shampoo

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Monster motorcyclists and the women that love them (WIP Wednesday)

Chris Hebert's cover for Dino Force.
Since Jim Beard has already hinted at his next project to be published by Metahuman Press, I can reveal that my current PROJECT DEMON is actually a short story called Moon Chopper. The new book is something of a sequel to the Super Swingin 1968 Special. This time the heroes are coming out of the 1970s however and get to play with two of the eras' major tropes: bikers and the supernatural.

Obviously, one such character stands out as a prime example of those combined genres, but I hope I'm making Moon Chopper unique enough that he doesn't just seem a clone of any other ghostly riders.

My new tale will introduce the world to Gordon Bridges, a simple man on the road with a dark secret. After nearly dying, he was given the powers of the Moon Chopper. Now he can transform into a beast of the night, but one with a purpose. His quest to defend the open road often brings him up against dark threats. His only ally is his girl, Friday, an intrepid reporter with a knack for trouble.

While working on that, I'm also giving a second pass to my Dino Force offering. Paolo may be the most unique character on the book, and perhaps the one with the strongest redemption story. I'm hoping it can do justice to the great work T. Mike McCurley, Don Gates and Travis Hiltz are also bringing to the book.

With those two short works filling my time, I am also in the development stage of my next long work. I haven't finalized which book will be my next, but I hope to get to all three works over the rest of 2017. Right now, I don't want to go into any more details on any of them, outside of their codenames: EARTH. FAITH. GRAFT. One of these works will be a sequel to a previous release, but the other two will be all new novels. Of the two others, I expect one might be the first novel I release under a pseudonym. The genre moves outside my usual undertakings and I suspect starting the new series with a new name might be the best way to help get it off the ground.

But that's of course a long way out. For now, I've got some short stories to work on. Wish me luck.