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Archive for December, 2009

Thursday, December 24th, 2009

One final post of the old year.  Then, next year, it’s back to regular posting.  Really, I promise.

Robin HoodI’ve set aside my research on the 14th century in order to pursue an more immediate (and paying!) project set in the 12th century.  I hope to be able to announce this project early next year, but unlike with novels, comics publishers keep a tight lid on these things until they are ready.  In any case, being in a late 12th century kind of mood, I decided to check out the BBC Robin Hood TV show (which all you Netflix subscribers can stream directly to your computer).  I’d heard good things about it, but allow me to say I was skeptical. 

I am skeptical no longer.  Okay, maybe it is not, in fact, the greatest TV show ever, as I may have claimed to my wife.  But it sure feels like it.  The show is, almost necessarily, a little bit on the silly side, but it is also full of brilliantly executed action set-pieces, engaging characters who, for all they lack in complexity, are sure fun to watch, and loads of witty dialogue.  In particular, Keith Allen plays the Sheriff of Nottingham with insanely campy verve.  Trust me on this one, people.  It’s my non-denominational holiday gift to you.

Monday, December 14th, 2009

Yes, it has been a long time since my last update.  It’s not for lack of content either.  I’ve been very busy, and I’ve done things that would have made good blog entries.  I’ve just been lazy, overwhelmed with work, and beaten down by holiday obligations.  I promise to do better after the new year.

So, what have I been up to?  I gave a guest lecture at University of Texas where my books were assigned for a course on the history of capitalism.  I also visited Penn State as part of the Josephine Berry Weiss Interdisciplinary Humanities Seminar, which was a cool thing to be asked to participate in.  Shout out to Sean X. Goudie, the professor who brought me in for this, and bought me dinner at a very nice Thai restaurant in University Park, PA.  

More and more frequently I hear about my books being assigned in university courses, which I find especially gratifying.  Always nice to warp young minds.  One guy at Oberlin was talking about designing an entire course around my books, but I never heard back from him.  Maybe he thought better of it.

What else?  I have finally nailed down the script for the first issue of my new project with Marvel.  I am almost finished with the penultimate draft of my next novel.  I have my agent negotiating a deal for me to write an “illustrated novel” set in the 12th century.  I’ve got another comics project I’m trying to get off the ground.  The film option for The Ethical Assassin expired, only to be replaced by a new film option for The Ethical Assassin, this one for money!  Getting money for movie rights?  Maybe the recession is over.

Oh, and the forthcoming zombie anthology in which I have a story was reviewed in Publishers Weekly today.  Dig who gets a nice mention.  Nice to see my swell pal Jonathan Maberry get singled out too. 

The New Dead Edited by Christopher Golden. St. Martin’s Griffin, $14.99 paper (400p) ISBN 978-0-312-55971-7

The 19 provocative, haunting, and genuinely unsettling original stories in this zombie anthology move the genre beyond its usual apocalyptic wastelands. David Liss’s novelette “What Maisie Knew” is a stunning and gruesome meditation on the banality of capitalism and evil. Mike Carey’s “Second Wind” is a haunting tale of an undead stockbroker who comes to question whether he ever truly lived. Lovers of more traditional zombie fare will also not be disappointed. Joe Hill’s ingenious “Twittering from the Circus of the Dead” tells a classic slasher film story through Twitter posts, while Jonathan Maberry’s heartbreaking “Family Business” describes a ruined America populated by kindly monks and zombie hunters. This powerful anthology shines a bright and unflinching light on the fears of death, decay, and loss that underpin America’s longstanding obsession with the undead. (Feb.)

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