Sunday, May 29, 2011

Update for Week Ending 5-28-2011 -- ConQuest

I attended ConQuest 42 in Kansas City on Friday and Saturday. This was the first Con that I feel like I really participated in. As a member of the Kansas City Science Fiction and Fantasy Club, I knew the people running the event. I even volunteered to enter many of the items donated for the auction into a spread sheet. It felt good to help. I hope that the Con raised a lot of money for Joplin, MO.

What made ConQuest different than PlanetComicCon for me is that I had friends attending. I felt welcome. It is always difficult for me to establish new relationships, but the people around me have been fantastic. Everyone I dealt with was extremely nice and loved to talk. Several of the people who manned the panels I attended were open to me talking to them in the "hallway" later. They all enjoyed talking about the trends in SF and Fantasy.

I have an interesting idea for a blog entry that I may write in the next few weeks. The greatest effect of my attendance that I feel revived. My spirit and energy are back. I will start writing again, but first things first, I must move. There many details that must be finished.

I want to give a special shout out to Captain Logan at .wearegeeksnotnerds who talked to me about comics, movies and our books for around 30 minutes on a U-Stream cast. It was great practice for me to be interviewed. Since then I've check out their site and found a lot of great things.

Finally, if you are into geek culture and don't know about Luke Ski shame on you. We performed a concert that kept me laughing the entire time. I purchased 5 of his CDs. You should too. My favorite song is Arkham Asylum.

Until next time, I remain, Dane Grannon

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Update for Week Ending 5-21-2011

This week I registered my domain name and set up a basic website and simple online shopping cart through Go Daddy. The tools were extremely simple to use and it was very economical.

I now have an income goal for my writing. I want to make enough to pay for the website and all my writing supplies. With the publication of Lucky Streak, I believe that this is attainable.

Writer's block has fully manifested itself, so I'm writing anything just to get the words on the screen. On Friday I watched a horror movie and wrote a review. The review became a blog post. I haven't heard back from Altered Realities Radio yet, but remain hopeful that they will publish it. If so, I may try one each week.

Last night I attended a writing conference conducted by Kansas City Science Fiction and Fantasy Club. I didn't learn anything new, but it is always renewing to spending time talking about writing. Afterwards Robin Wayne Bailey, Diane Bailey, Chris McKitterick, and I went out to eat at Marrakech Cafe. I really enjoyed the food and company.

I am really looking forward to ConQuest. It is less than a week away. There will be flyers advertising Lucky Streak on the free table. Shawn Conn did his normal incredible job on the flyer. I'm extremely lucky to be working with him.

That is all for now. Until next time, I remain, Dane Grannon.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

The Slaughter -- Movie Review

The Slaughter was directed by Jay Lee was released in 2006. This low-budget comedy/horror film starts seriously then descends into silliness. It is the true hallmark of a film that refused to take itself seriously. This movie cost only $25,000 (estimated) to make.

The opening scene is straight out of Lovecraft. A group of beautiful nude women chant and summon a cheesy-looking demon. The event is interesting but overdone.

The next scene features a young mother who is awakened by a thunderstorm. The sequence of lightning strikes reveal a swapping of the demon carrying an axe with that of the mother. The mother checks on her daughter and discovers her hacked in two. She rushes from the room and falls over the stairway guardrail and is impaled on the landing.

This beginning juxtaposed black-and-white and color shots to good effect. I think this could have been the start of a serious horror show. From this point on, the descent into comedy begins.
The remainder of the movie relates the story of a group of six college kids, the jerk boss and his pretty but bossy assistant. These characters represent the most common eight archetypes of bad horror movies -- the nerd, the jock, the stoner, the normal guy, the big-breasted blonde, the greedy boss, the harassed assistant and my favorite, the competent woman. At first I thought  she would be the helpless girl but I was pleasantly surprised.

At first I thought the movie was taking itself seriously and was going to stop watching it; however, as time passed, I realized that it was a comedy and my enjoyment increased. The script and acting are full of deliberate overacting and exaggerations. Behind the silliness lurked a plot that could be filmed as a moderately decent straight horror film. There are also numerous homages to pop culture.
This is not the greatest of movies ( I give it 2.5 of 5 stars) but I'll freely admit that the ending surprised me. While I can't recommend paying to watch, it is good enough for see for free. There is some silly violence and nudity and it deserves its "R" rating.

I hope you enjoyed this review. To learn more about me visit my blog at and my website at

Until next time, I remain, Dane Grannon.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Update for Week Ending 5-14-2011

Time for yet another boring post. The Adventure is dragging. I think that I wrote less than 500 words.

There are many reasons but the most pressing is that I'm feeling the effects of stress on my life. Yes I know that I sound like I'm whining, but all in all this was a bad week. It started with my birthday. For the first time in 21 years, I have neither wife nor girlfriend to celebrate with. The soon to be ex-wife officially filed the papers. I'm be more reasonable than I should but at this point I want it over with.

I have purchased most of the basics to furnish my new apartment. I'm waiting until I have the moving truck to pick up the futon I'll use for a bed. I plan to buy a nice bed in a few months, but will shop around for a while. Maybe, I'll try a Sleep Number bed. In any event I'll select a considerably softer mattress than the one I have now.

My mother's health continues to deteriorate. I am gravely concerned that she won't last out the year. She probably end up in a nursing home before too much longer. I'm being supportive of my sister in her attempts to deal with this. I hope my brothers do the same. I don't have the emotional energy to deal with this. I feel almost empty.

This leads me to my writing. Lucky Streak is scheduled for publication on July 20, 2011. I should be excited about this, but right now, I want it to be over with. My publisher should be sending over an updated pre-press version in the next few days. I expect it to be clean. She is extremely thorough.

This post is rambling. I am ending it now, before it gets worse.

Until next week, I remain, Dane Grannon

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Update for Week Ending 5-07-2011

As I write this, I am sitting at the launch party of EOLYN. I met Karin only a few months ago. She is a wonderful writer. I’m only one-third of the way through and it has been a delight.

As I sit here, I feel happy for her but almost insanely jealous. I’m an adult and should be beyond these feelings; however, the events in my life are such that my emotions are on edge. I must endeavor to control them or link this into a package that can be utilized in my writing. I find that my best writing originates in strong emotions and powerful memories. My writing is never a true memory, but a trickle within the torrents of my stories.

My writing is going poorly. The second book is proving impossible to write. I have a detailed outline and well-defined characters but almost no motivation. I wonder if this is related to my concern that no one will actually purchase Lucky Streak. May December Publications is a creating a flyer that I can place on a free table at the entrance to ConQuest. I hope that they generate good sales.

I hope that some of my followers will review Lucky Streak and help me plug the book. A few months ago, one of my friends said that she will interview me closer to the publication date. I look forward to this. I trust her to take my not-so-great public speaking skills and transform them to coherence. 

A month from now, I’ll be settling into my new apartment. There are many details to manage, so I’ll have no difficulties finding distractions. This bodes an ill-wind for my writing. I’m considering taking break, but I worry if I stop, I won’t start again.

Until next week, I remain Dane Grannon

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Update for Week Ending 4-30-2011

I seem to have run out of steam on writing the sequel to Lucky Streak. At the moment I can't force myself to write another zombie novel. That doesn't mean that I've stopped writing. I finished the rough draft of my bad guy story, An Ordinary Day, and started another creature feature, Night's Wrath. Of course these titles will probably change.

I really like where Night's Wrath is headed. The protagonist in the first scene came to life much better than I imagined. I may have stumbled upon a character who is strong enough for a novel. The world is certainly interesting, but that part was easy. I placed it in the same general area of The Undead War and Escape From Hope. It also contains a monster that I created. This beast is becoming more powerful every time I use him.

I spent Friday evening at the pre-launch party for Eolyn by Karin Rita Gastreich. As of this writing, I am only two chapters in on the first book, but I read 4 chapters of the second. Karin is a member of The Dead Horse Society in Kansas City and we are providing her feedback. I'll write a review later.

My idea of having a sale on Escape From Hope appears to have fallen on its face. The coupon code is still available and works until the middle of May, but no one is buying. In the past week thirty people told me that they visited this blog and used the codes to download the story. I can see through my traffic meter that this is not the case. The solution to poor sales is to write better. Maybe the next story will work.

Until next time, I remain, Dane Grannon.