Title: My Name is Dee
Author: Robin Wyatt Dunn
Publisher: John Ott, San Diego (August 28, 2013)
Number of Pages: 230
Format: Print (Paperback)
Rating: 2 out of 5 stars aligned
John Dee is a magician in Los Angeles. He is going Insane.
That single sentence captured my interest. It is also that sentence that begins the blurb on the back of the book. I have always found stories with mad magicians/wizards to be fairly destructive and entertaining, so I was sold, but the rest of the description is laced with plot outline and intriguing sentences such as, “…a novel for the educated reader who enjoys noir action, intrigue and dark romance, for the child in all of us who wants to go on adventures, and for the fearful adult who marvels at the terrifying scale of the universe.” With those words I felt a challenge, as if I was supposed to say, “Yes, yes I am an educated reader who, for the child in me, likes adventures and as an adult am fearful and marvels at the scale of the universe!”
I was contacted by Robin Wyatt Dunn back in March in regards to reviewing his forthcoming novel, My Name is Dee. I didn’t even hesitate in answering his query by telling him I would love to do so. It took a couple of weeks to receive the review copy, and a little longer before I was able to read it. But as I waited to dive into the book I looked up Mr. Dunn and his previous work. Robin Wyatt Dunn lives within Echo Park located in Los Angeles, California. The 33 year old writer has been a very busy the last couple years, publishing over 40 short stories, poems, and flash fiction in a number of places, such as Phantasmacore, and The Blue Hour. He also has contributed stories in anthologies from West Pigeon Press, Echelon Press, and Postscripts to Darkness. Robin was kind enough to send me a free version of his prose poem, Son and Woman, published with Smashwords. Dunn’s style is like nothing I have seen before. Which is good. Though sometimes a little difficult to follow, he always manages to punch the reader in the chest with strong emotion, giving his pieces a mood that helps carry the reader along. This pre reading of the authors work made me more excited to enjoy his book. Unfortunately I was not as impressed with the novel as I had been with his shorter works.
As I began My Name is Dee, I noticed a series of breaks on the pages that jumped from scene to scene. I thought it might only last through the first few pages, like a series of flashbacks that feed the story, but it turns out that that’s how the book is formatted. Along with the jumps I found some of the character dialogue to be awkward and hard to follow at times. Time has become muddled through some rift, I think, causing the breaks. Or is everything so out of place because the main character has gone insane? I don’t know. Finding the book hard to follow lead me to reading it out loud to myself. Somehow that made things a little easier to put together, though with the constant setting and character shifts I felt like I was putting together a complex puzzle. Each new scene representing a disassociated piece of info that is intended to fit with another piece of the story, ending with all the bits falling together, if you can remember them all.
The plot itself was an interesting concept. The reveal of an opposing force, the Foo, a.k.a. aliens, and the greater reveal of Chai, the powerful presence that Dee has gotten the attention of, were nice highlights. I especially enjoyed the idea of writers being this profession that needs protecting. As I read I kept waiting for some Lovecraftian reference to the John Dee copy of the Necronomicon, as mentioned in H.P. Lovecraft’s, “The Dunwich Horror“. Unfortunately no mention of that, at least that I saw, but a small mention of Cthulhu in regards to the Children of the Corn movie.
Overall I found reading the book to be more work than pleasure. The effort it took to stay focused on the bits and pieces needed to build the story was exhausting at times and caused me to do a lot of back tracking to previous scenes. Maybe after all I’m not the educated reader I thought I was, or I just couldn’t find the right setting to read it. Either way it just didn’t jibe with me. I cant say I recommend the book, but I urge readers to take a look at Dunn’s other works. A list of them can be found here.
If you have checked out My Name is Dee, let me know what you think by leaving a comment. And if you like all the tasty bits we gibber about here, become a follower or submit to receive email updates with every new post! Check us out on Twitter @UnspkbleGibberr and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/UnspeakableGibberer.
That’s right! Some exciting news for Lovecraftians as our favorite Great Old One gets some recognition times two. The recently discovered digestive microbes, found in termites, are indeed inspired by H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu and Brian Lumley’s Cthylla- Cthulhu’s daughter, created by Bryan Lumley and introduced in his novel, The Transition of Titus Crow. Both Cthulhu macrofasciculumque, and little Cthylla microfasciculumque are exciting discoveries. Most commonly known as protists, the tiny microorganisms help researchers learn more about our evolution, and how some protists cause disease, or in the case of these new discoveries, prevent disease, Below are a couple of photos of father and daughter; on the left is Cthulhu macrofasciculumque and on the right is Cthylla microfasciculumque.
To get the facts and learn something cool check out the whole original article by Megan Gannon over at Live Science: http://www.livescience.com/28426-lovecraft-monster-cthulhu-microbe.html
But if that wasn’t enough mind shattering news concerning good ol’ Cthulhu, then check out the Piomoa Cthulhu spider. Primarily found in California, this beast has some long legs and loves to hang out in hollowed redwoods. Click on the photo to get some more info.
This short by John Skipp & Andrew Kasch is a little longer than some, but very worth it. Keep watching through it all and you’ll get a nice surprise. Stay at Home Dad is a Bronze winner of the Fantasia International Film Festival 2012, and was screened at this years H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival. Enjoy
Title: Where’s My Shoggoth?
Writer: Ian Thomas
Illustrator: Adam Bolton
Publisher: Archaia Entertainment, LLC (October 9, 2012)
Number of Pages: 56
Format: Print (Hardcover)
Rating: 5 Out of 5 Stars Aligned….Uh oh!
Your tentacled friend has gone missing. What can you do? Go looking for him of course!
Travel from the deepest cellars to the highest spires of a sprawling mansion. Search the grounds from the forest to the lake. On the way you’ll meet monsters and demigods, aliens and Old Ones, and all manner of other creatures from the Cthulhu mythos. Surely something, somewhere, has seen your shoggoth?
An affectionate homage to the works of H.P. Lovecraft, beautifully illustrated by Adam Bolton, and rhymes by Ian Thomas. For mythos dabblers and shoggoth owners of all ages.
Back in June I posted an update on this project by Ian Thomas and Adam Bolton, and mentioned a contest they had to see if anyone could guess where the Shoggoth was. Turns out I won with the best answer which earned me a signed copy of Where’s My Shoggoth?, and a canvas print of a double-page spread of my choice from the book. I first learned of this book in September of 2011, when researching a new wave of Lovecraftian Children’s books, and was very excited to get my tentacles on it. At the time there were only a couple images that teased at what the book would look like, but it was enough to catch my attention. Since then I have been watching its progress and patiently waiting for my copy to arrive in the mail.
Signed copy in hand, I am happy to have finally received this amazing book! As I sat down to take a look at it my wife, who knows only a little about the Lovecraft/Cthulhu Mythos (We’re working on it), plucked it from my hands and began thumbing through the pages as I watched on. After a few giggles and Praises she said she loved it and could see herself reading it to our little one that is on the way. This of course slated my plans to brain wash my child to loving everything Lovecraftian, and it seems my wife just might be on board.
Ian Thomas and Adam Bolton (who is enjoying this as his first publication) have brilliantly created an excellent addition to the Lovecraftian Universe. Where’s My Shoggoth? is a silly joy ride through H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu mythos that anyone, adult or child, will enjoy. The book follows a young boy as he searches for his pet Shoggoth through creepy mansions and the damned grounds that surround it. Through the tale we encounter a plethera of Lovecraftian goodness and get to meet some interesting characters. Along with Ian’s seussian rhymes, Adam brilliantly illustrates the young boy’s journey and captivates the reader with minute details that brings cause for many re-reads.
The book is a thick stock hardcover, making it very durable to thrashings from your joyfully insane child, and has a detail that I found very appealing. When I was a kid one of my favorite books was about a witch who flies on a broom for the first time and all the things she sees, it’s kind of similar to Where’s My Shoggoth?. And though I enjoyed the material, what really appealed to me was that it could glow in the dark. The pages of Ian and Adams book don’t have this capability, but I found it a nice touch that the cover is webbed with invisible luminesces so that you’re any little Lovecraftian will be able to spot their favorite book, like an unnatural color out of space, in the dark as they drift off to sleep. And when they wake up and might be slightly tired of reading, they can play the board game, Stairs and Tentacles, that is located on both the front and back cover.
All in all Where’s My Shoggoth? has brought a modern appeal to children. Growing up in today’s world holds many visually arresting things. Video games are no longer only 8-bits, movies and TV are now in 3D, and books are now read on electronic devices. So how do you capture a child’s attention long enough to physically flip through pages of a book? You give them Where’s My Shoggoth? I know I am looking forward to sharing this with any who have kids and who love to read to them.
If you are interested in this book, check out Ian and Adam’s website at www.wheresmyshoggoth.com. And if that’s not enough and you’re wondering how this book sounds, check out a free audio version at http://wheresmyshoggoth.com/audio/Shoggoth.mp3. And please visit both Adam and Ian’s official sites by clicking on their name anywher in this post, and see what there up to.
One final note. With this amazing prize, I also received an amazing sketch done by Adam Bolton, along with a hand written note. It was very kind and I thank both Adam and Ian for sending me these goodies, and I hope to see more from these two in the future! In the sketch you’ll see the Unspeakable Gibberer that Steve Santiago created for me, playing chess with Adam’s Shoggoth. I’m not sure what struck me more, the amazing art, or the fact of seeing my creature playing with another from the mythos. Really cool!
People who enjoyed Where’s My Shoggoth? might also enjoy:
If you have checked out Where’s My Shoggoth?, let me know what you think. And if you like all the tasty bits we gibber about here, become a follower or submit to receive email updates with every new post! Don’t forget to check us out on Twitter @UnspkbleGibberr, and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/UnspeakableGibberer.
Editor: Dan Lockwood
Publisher: Self Made Hero (April 1, 2011/reprint April 15, 2012)
Number of Pages: 120
Rating: 4 Out of 5 Stars Aligned
“For what has risen may sink…” Out of the dark corners of the earth and the still darker imagination of Howard Phillips Lovecraft, renowned master of the eerie, come seven sinister tales of terror. From cosmic horrors gibbering in the night to uneasy stirrings in the boundless depths beneath the seas, Lovecraft’s stories have never lost their power to amaze and unnerve. This graphic anthology breathes new live into classic works of weird fiction. “…and what has sunk may rise again.”
When it comes to Lovecraftian based graphic novels/anthologies, though the writing takes a big role, it seems the whole package rises or sinks with the art. Lovecraft’s work was visceral. It created disturbing images that we had trouble correlating and left our minds troubled with confusion. Through his words he tried to show us other dimensions, and described creatures and forces outside any human comprehension. So, how does one exactly draw blasphemous fish-frogs of nameless design, or ink a color out of space?
The Lovecraft Anthology: Volume 1 is courageously edited by Dan Lockwood, and is penned and inked by some of arts greatest devotees to Lovecraft’s mythos. This volume contains seven adaptations by different writers and artists and is a great collection.
The Call of Cthulhu, written by Ian Edginton, Illustrated by D’Israeli: A great story to open this anthology, though I felt that it missed some of Lovecraft’s best moments. D’Israeli’s style isn’t my favorite, but his depiction of Cthulhu and the M.C. Escher-like R’lyeh were the best panels of this adaptation.
The Haunter of the Dark, written by Dan Lockwood, illustrated by Shane Ivan Oakley: Definitely not my favorite retelling in this anthology. The best panel was the conclusion
The Dunwich Horror, written by Rob Davis, illustrated by I.N.J. Culbard: I wasn’t much of a fan of I.N.J Culbard’s adaptation of At the Mountains of Madness, and I feel that his art is generally not very Lovecraftian. That being said, I was surprised at his attempt with this story. Along with great writing, Culbard’s vision left me wanting more.
The Colour Out of Space, written by David Hine, illustrated by Mark Stafford: This is one of Lovecraft’s greatest unnerving and unexplainable tales, making it one of the most difficult to visually adapt. Good news is Stafford does a valiant job with twisted images that carry this adaptation to the end.
The Shadow Over Innsmouth, written by Leah Moore & John Reppion, illustrated by Leigh Gallagher: At first I didn’t like this one, but the more I reviewed it the more I enjoyed Gallagher’s classic comic book style and hollow white eyes.
The Rats in the Walls, written by Dan Lockwood, illustrated by David Hartman: Were Lockwood’s writing fails, Hartman’s creepy/gory Disney-like illustrations did this tale justice.
Dagon, written by Dan Lockwood, illustrated by Alice Duke: Lockwood finally shines in this anthologies final adaptation. Accompanied by Duke’s lovely imagery, Lockwood triumphantly wraps up with one of Lovecraft’s most original stories.
Overall the artists are what make this book what is. Though I wasn’t fully impressed with all of Dan Lockwood’s adaptations, he still effectively edited an amazing looking graphic anthology. It is truly good to see how others view Lovecraft’s work, and fun to see how untraditional some folk’s visions are, I like that. I have already begun going through Volume 2, and am pretty impressed so far. I hope Self Made Hero continues to pump these volumes out. I have read/looked over Volume 1 many times and still can’t get enough of it.
If you have read The Lovecraft Anthology: Volume 1, let me know what you think. And if you like all the tasty bits we gibber about here, become a follower or submit to receive email updates with every new post!
Publisher: Dark Horse Books
Number of Pages: 205
Rating: 3 Out of 5 Stars Aligned
January 1972. Resenting his unexpected fame and suffering from severe writer’s block, America’s premier “gonzo” journalist decides to reinvent himself. He creates a new persona–Uncle Lono– and hatches a scheme to return to his roots, reinvigorating his patriotism and his writing in the process. On a freaked-out journey to Arkham, Massachusetts, and the 1972 presidntial primary, evidence mounts that sinsiter forces are on the rise, led by the Cult of Cthulhu, and its most prominent member–Richard M. Nixon! Will the truth set Lono free or simply drive him insane?
Hunter S. Thompson and H.P. Lovecraft were two very influential writers from two very different times. Though they shared no commonality in the genre in which they wrote, the two authors always seemed to have a way of captivating my literary attention. Lovecraft, a writer of cosmic fear, never let us forget that we were an insignificant force in this universe. His writings in the early 1900′s helped to define the weird genre and opened up doors to aspiring writers of fiction. Thompson wrote to an already fearful generation that craved information, no matter how twisted it was, about the world at war and how insignificant the American dream and its people were to the white collared swine in charge… Namely Nixon.
Both wrote in times of war, and held correspondence with numerous folks. When standing back and seeing some of the silly similarities they share, along with some of the serious ones, I find it unusual that Lovecraft passed away March 15th, of 37′, and Thompson was born 4 months later on July 18th. Now I like to entertain the idea of reincarnation, mainly because the thought of continuing to another life intrigues me, so I always thought it would make for a smash-up story if somehow Thompson was the reincarnation of H.P. Lovecraft. Bad news is im too late.
Good news is Brian Keene and Nick Mamatas, another pair of great authors qualified for the job, have collaborated to create, The Damned Highway: Fear and Loathing in Arkham. Though there is no connection of the two’s death/birth dates made in the book, I finished the last page and closed the book with a grin on my face.
Fans of both Lovecraft, and Thompson, it seems, are pretty picky when it comes to new additions to either Gonzo writing, or to the Cthulhu Mythos. Granted, Hunter S. Thompson fans are a little harsher to those breaking into the art, both sides seem to be fairly happy with what Keene and Mamatas have produced.
I have been reading both H.P.L and H.S.T for years, so I was no newbie to some of the references Keene and Mamatas successfully pulled off with a strange grace. The mastery of Thompson’s language. Perfectly sewn-together plot of Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos into Thompson’s time during the 72′ election campaign. Interweaving truth like Senator Eagleton’s electroconvulsive therapy, and exposing how it was connected to an occult ceremony that had gone awry.
The story took a little bit to get jiving for me at first. The plot was always moving, but some of the begging of the book was slow and seemed a little heavy the usual Hunter S. Thompson references. But after trudging on I kind of felt that it was needed for those who might not be well read in Thompson’s work and his view on the world. Even still I would recommend reading some of both H.P. Lovecraft and Thompson’s work, or at least looking them up and reading about them and their life.
From dead peacocks, to fungi from Yuggoth. From Woody Creek Colorado, to Arkham and Innsmouth Massachusetts. This book fully satisfied that weird little hunger pain I get from time to time for Lovecraftian fiction. Especially Lovecraftian fiction that is seen and heard through the eyes and ears of Hunter S. Thompson.
In the end I recommend reading this one. If you’ve got a small bit of cash and some time to spare, I’d say sit down with this baby and learn how Nixon almost succeeded awaking Cthulhu and damning us all.
Next on the docket is Horns by Joe Hill. Stephen Kings kid gets a shot at showing us how twisted his mind has become. You know, being raised by King himself…might be interesting.
H.P.Podcraft.com – Episode 111 – The Battle That Ended The Century, Collapsing Cosmoses And Till A’ The Seas
Its been a while since I’ve said anything about the H.P. Lovecraft Literary Podcast! Though I haven’t stopped listening to Chad and Chris, I have seemed to fallen off the wagon (so to speak) when it comes to covering what these guys are up to. Since the last post, in which I covered The Evil Clergyman and The Horror in the Burying-Ground, Chad and Chris have been two busy dudes. Their graphic novel, Deadbeats, is being published by Self Made Hero. They hosted an awesome live show in the UK along with Andrew Leman, and Paul Maclean, and had live music provided by Zeitgeist Zero. In between all of that they have two Lovecraftian adaptations of The Temple, and The Hound in the new Lovecraft Anthology Vol 2, also published by Self Made Hero, and in turn released audio readings of those adaptations for their listeners.
This week we get a triple feature, the first of its kind on this podcast. Read nicely by Chris’s son’s great-grandmother, Agnes Coughnaugton. The stories featured are: The Battle that Ended the Century, Collapsing Cosmoses and Till A’ the Seas, and I have to agree that out of the three Till A’ the Seas is my favorite. Collapsing Cosmoses seemed to short and unfinished though it had some great qualities, while The Battle that Ended the Century seemed like a farce that was mostly written by Barlow with touches of H.P.’s hand here and their. All in all it was a good episode, and it was good to hear the two back at the mic’s!
”On land the great reptiles proved highly tractable; but the shoggoths of the sea, reproducing by fission and acquiring a degree of accidental intelligence, presented for a time a formidable problem.” H.P. Lovecraft ~ At The Mountains Of Madness
Well, the ocean is an amazing place, but it still terrifies me. The creatures of the deep have captivated imaginations and have been the topic of speculation for centuries. From ancient sea battles with leviathans and giant squids, to recent discoveries of life at depths that almost back up those mythical claims, the ocean has been a constant realm of fear and fascination.
The two videos below came to my attention via IO9.com, and feature two almost unexplainable creatures. The first has been described as a specimen of the Deepstaria enigmatica, from the jellyfish family. Others speculate that it is simply a free floating whale’s placenta. But upon viewing, as the creature unravels it looks to have a florescent tail, like other deep sea creatures that use florescent appendages to help lure prey. The second video is of a another species of the jellyfish family known as Stygiomedusa gigantea. These creatures have been sighted only 114 times in the last 110 years and have boggled scientists with their meter long umbrella-like bell, and paddle-shaped arms that extend to six meters in length and contain no stinging tentacles.
Either way, while watching these videos I couldn’t help but think of Lovecraft’s Shoggoths. Especially the amorphous creature featured in the first video. The way it moves through the water, and how it seems to show interest in the camera, or maybe the light.
Thanks to a tip from IO9.com I recently read a post by Guillermo Del Toro on his blog in regards to Prometheus,and how the film is most likely the death of At The Mountains Of Madness. April 30th Del Toro enlightened his fans with his thoughts on the new Ridley Scott film. -
“I have been interviewed about this lately and wanted to post my two cents about this:
Prometheus started filming a while ago- right at the time we were in preproduction on PACIFIC RIM. The title itself gave me pause- knowing that ALIEN was heavily influenced by Lovecraft and his novella.
This time, decades later with the budget and place Ridley Scott occupied, I assumed the greek metaphor alluded at the creation aspects of the HPL book. I believe I am right and if so, as a fan, I am delighted to see a new RS science fiction film, but this will probably mark a long pause -if not the demise- of ATMOM.
The sad part is- I have been pursuing ATMOM for over a decade now- and, well, fter Hellboy II two projects I dearly loved were not brought to fruition for me.
The good part is: One project did… And I am loving it and grateful for the blessings I have received.
That one project is, I believe, “Pacific Rim”, a film about an alien invasion that is fought with huge battle robots piloted by humans. Kinda makes me think of the Gundam cartoons.
My feelings are that Prometheus just had more financial backing, and simply beat Del Toro to the punch. When asked further by fans about this he said:
“Same premise. Scenes that would be almost identical.”
Which would explain why making At The Mountains Of Madness so soon after Prometheus might be a bad idea. Though I agree with one of the his fans that with all these ancient alien invasion flicks, wouldn’t now be the best time for the Lovecraft film? It is a tricky question to answer in the vain that no one wants ATMOM to fall in line with with the rest, and not stand alone as a masterpiece, as Lovecraft’s novel is.
So for now, no Shoggoths, Elder Things, or large blind penguins.
What are your thoughts?
A new podcast has enslaved my ears and left my mind craving more. The Double Shadow Podcast, a podcast revolving around the life and works of author Clark Ashton Smith. Lead by Phil, Tim, and Ruth (a.k.a Cthulhu Chick) we learn, in the first episode, about Smith’s career and life, and a little insight on his stories.
The Double Shadow is sort of framed up like the H.P. Lovecraft Literary Podcast, and shows the same potential for expanding an audience for an author who never got the recognition he deserved. I am a firm believer/supporter in spreading the weird around so when I saw this podcast I jumped to it. I am appreciative that someone is putting this together, and I am very excited to continue listening to what Phil, Tim, and Ruth have to teach me. Listening to things like the H.P. Podcraft and The Double Shadow, make me want a Robert E. Howard, or Frank Belknap Long podcast.
Episode one is up and running over at iTunes, so hurry and check it out! Cheers to these guys.
**If you are interested on learning ahead of the class, then check out The Eldritch Dark: The Sanctum of Clark Ashton Smith, and quest for knowledge of his live and read his works.
Today is my wife and I’s anniversary. But today I am not here to explain my marital bliss to you. No, even though im sure you’d love to hear how two people are still quite madly in love after two years of marriage, im here on a different matter. Today also is a sad day for me for I know it is the anniversary of one of the world’s best imaginator’s, Howard Phillips Lovecraft. From August 20th, 1890 to March 15th 1937, this world was blessed with the presence of this man. I, along with an army of fellow Lovecraftian’s morn this man on this day, and though we are very happy to have such availability to his work, we also wish that this genius had many more years than just the 46 he had on this planet.
So a few days ago I saw someone had found Mr. Lovecraft’s obituary and though it would be nice to show it here as well. The version I have is blown up for easier reading, fact is it’s still hard to get through. So, along with the actual obit. I also transcribed it below for clearer understanding of what it says. Though it doesn’t really cover his writing career to in any detail really, it does do a good job of covering his life, from his ailments, to his studies, his grandfather, and his parents.
I have been into Lovecraft for a couple of years now, and that interest has only grown with each story I’ve read, each letter he penned, and every idea that he gave me for my own weird tales. So for that I thank you Lovecraft and I hope you are comfortable amongst the Ghouls and Night-gaunts that surely inhabit your afterlife, at least we all hope. And we will continually promise to Not Call Up Any That We Can Not Put Down!
Funeral services for Howard Phillip Lovecraft, student and writer of fiction, who died yesterday at Jane Brown Memorial Hospital, will be held Thursday at 12 o’clock in the chapel of Horace B. Knowles’s Sons, 187 Benefit Street. Burial will be in the family plot in Swan Point Cemetery. He was 46.
Born in this city, Aug. 20, 1890, the only child of the late Winfield S. and Sarah P. Lovecraft, Mr. Lovecraft from early life was handicapped by poor health. Essentially a student and an omnivorous reader, he was able to take his place only from time to time in regular school classrooms with children of his own age but graduated from Hope Street high school and secured the equivalent of a college education from private tutors.
His early recourse to the library of his grandfather , Whipple V. Phillips, at 454 Angell street in which he was turned loose to browse at will gave him the bend toward weird writing which was his hobby. In his autobiographs, which he wrote up to the day before he was admitted to the hospital last month, he related the importance to his life of the fairy tales and classical tales he read but six years of age.
Besides his interest in the supernatural, he was a constant student of genealogy and of astronomy, and at one time, wrote a newspaper column on the latter subject. His days and nights for years were spent in writing in the library at 86 College Street, where he lived, in recent years, with his aunt, Mrs. Phillips Camwell, his sole survivor. As he neared the end of his life, he turned his scholarly interests to a study of his own physical condition and daily wrote minutely of his case for his physician’s assistance. His clinical notes ended only when he could no longer hold a pencil.
So with that I am heading of to work to enjoy a day of listening to some Lovecraft audio books, and a whole lot of the H.P. Lovecraft Literary Podcast at www.Hppodcraft.com. Cheers!
“What it is, only God knows. In terms of matter I suppose the thing Ammi described would be called a gas, but this gas obeyed the laws that are not of our cosmos” ~ H.P. Lovecraft, The Colour out of Space 1927
Maybe Mr. Lovecraft wasn’t so far off with that idea. It is true that Lovecraft entertained the idea of a highly intelligent gas/mist as a possibility. He chiefly confirms this through his tale, The Colour Out of Space, and a couple of others like in The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath, and Celaphaïs. But in a letter he wrote he stated:
“How do we know that the form of atomic and molecular motion called ‘life’ is the highest of all forms? Perhaps the dominate creature–the most rational and God-like of all beings–is an invisible gas!”
After watching this, I think Howie Lovecraft might be right.
Wow, A week has passed, and as I type this out the newest episode of the HP Lovecraft Literary Podcast is up and running. So I thought I’d make this a quick one, especially since there’s not much to talk about in regards to this fine episode.
This week is a double feature, “The Evil Clergyman“, and “The Horror in the Burying Ground“. Neither are my cup of tea, nor were they very sweet on Chad or Chris by the sound of it. Though no one seems to be thoroughly impressed with these two, the reader this week is Michael Ford, father in-law to Chris, and all around handsome sounding character, cetainly gives these two tales a shine. If there is a reason why I like these two stories episode, Michael would be that reason, and the sweet sound of the music of fellow North Dakotan, Troy Sterling Nies.
“The Evil Clergyman” was a dream, according to Lovecraft, that he wrote about to a friend who later published it after Lovecraft’s death. So I wouldn’t be too hard on this one folks, like Chris and Chad said, I’m sure he would have worked this thing out better with a plot that actually made sense.
And then there was “The Horror in the Burying Ground” the final revision Lovecraft did for that terrible Hazel Heald. Well, I guess I don’t know how terrible she really was because it seems Lovecraft really never had anything nice to say about the folks he ghost wrote for. Both of these tales have a bit humor in them, but “The Horror in the Burying Ground” seems to resonate with the muffled chuckles of Lovecraft himself.
The sponsor for this weeks show is David Maurice Garrett. This guy has a great new book entitled, Tome of Horror: The Collected Dark Fiction, and its available in paperback or Kindle. Check out David’s blog, Visions of the Dark, because mainly his name is David, and I hear that’s a good name.
Though not a lot of praise has been handed to these two tales, I do suggest you read them and spawn your own opinion and tell us what you think, or head over to HPPodcraft.com and let them know what was on your mind while reading them. Of coarse its a great episode regardless of the tales being covered. I always enjoy my Thursdays with Chris and Chad, and its sad to think that maybe around April they will be done going through Lovecraft’s work. I only hope that they continue doing something. Cheers!
It’s been a long hard couple of years, but since June of 2009, the world has had the H.P. Lovecraft Literary Podcast to make it easier. I mention this because Chad and Chris have hit their 100th episode! Congrats to those gentlemen. In the beginning of the 100th episode the guys talk about what they’ve done to get where they are now and what’s in store for the future. I am excited to see where these two take it and I am sure I will be listening every step of the way.
Lately when Chris and Chad do a two part story, or three, I wait till the final episode to post about it. If it goes over three parts I usually cover every other episode. So this week I sandwiched episode 99, and 100 to sum up what went down in one shot. The guys didn’t have a physical voice or guest for this story, but they were able to get some side notes from Michael Reaves.
Most people may not know the name, but Reaves is quite prolific. He’s done work for Gargoyles, The New Batman, He-Man, and most notably (especially to me) The Real Ghostbusters. Check out more of his work and what he’s accomplished here. Anyway, the guys were unable to get him on the show, so they read some stuff he wrote for the episodes. Very clever and very sharp stuff from Michael, and I hope to hear, and see more from him in the future.
Now im not going to go into too much detail on what the guys talked about in regards to The Thing on the Doorstep, however I encourage all to listen to what these guys had to say about this story. The reader this week is Fred Cross, and he does an excellent job voicing out the distress from characters Edward, and Dan. Though this story is almost a little to incestial, if that’s a word, it has a great undertone that Chad points out as the trouble people go through when losing their identity, and the perversion of others encroaching in on your morals.
Also this week listen for the special code for 10% of any order at Miskatonic Books. That deal is going through Valentine’s Day, so get on over and make a couple orders. Again congrats to these guys and I hope to be hearing another 200 episodes as we wind down this cosmically colored path beyond the darkest of the hillside thickets. A special treat! I posted at the bottom the actual episode of The Real Ghostbusters, The Collect Call of Cthulhu, and Cheers!
I found this little jewel on www.Newgrounds.com and thought I would share. Enjoy!
Saw this on the YouTube homepage, and thought I’d give it a look. Pretty good stuff for a claymation/stop motion animation. Strange adaptation of “From Beyond”, but clever none the less.
Another animated short by Eldritch Animation that takes a different look at the story of “The Statement of Randoph Carter”. Enjoy!
Art by Adam S. Doyle
Happy late boxing day folks! I hope all of your boxes were happy and well-tended, and I also hope you all had a merry Christmas too. Here it is December 27th and this guy cant help but have the blues. No, no, I got all the things I wanted, sure, I just can’t help but feel the warmth that only a Christmas season can bring slipping away. It begins right after presents are opened, you feel this string of uneasiness beginning to creep into your head. Then the classic Christmas breakfast, were it doesn’t matter how many home-made biscuits you eat, you realize that emptiness is the feeling of awesomeness leaving you slowly. The day trickles on with family visitations, and chatty banter about how you’re so happy to be with everyone today. It’s true too, you are happy, at this point you think the food, or the eggnog is the cause of the uneasiness. Like a dying lite inside that you can’t help but let go out.
You go to bed, reminding your self the whole time that today was great, the food was great, the family is great, and the presents were great. Then as you abruptly wake up in the middle of the night and strain your ears for the yuletide music that you left playing on your clock radio, you scowl as you see the time is 1:15 and the station has switched to its normal playlist, why couldn’t they just play it through Boxing day?
The warning signs are there when things begin to die out or slip away, and when those signs are left without notice, people feel hurt and broken from the sudden change. The jolliness has left us, like some life has left us. And that is what I felt before I began to listen to this weeks Drabblecast, episode 227, The Star by Arthur C. Clarke.
Due to holiday obligations I was unable to listen to this episode until only yesterday. I was feeling those blues begging to really sink in, until the dulcet tones of Norm Sherman’s voice perked me up, as I knew I was in store for a great story. But the show isn’t complete with out Norm’s witty banter, and the talented Drabbles and Twabbles that are featured every week. The Drabble this week, Creator by Nathan Lee, went very well with the main feature, and the twabble by Algernon Sydney is Dead went like this: “Joy to the World the Beast is come! It’s time for reckoning. Let every heart prepare for doom and crime upon nature bring.”
He, he, he good one. The Star, by Arthur C. Clarke was a fabulously futuristic story that got me to thinking pretty heavily. I am no atheist, yet I would not consider myself a devout christian either. I have never been baptised, yet I believe in a higher power. Whether I believe in a buff aged bearded fellow in the clouds, or in something that flies around in space ships, hell maybe Lovecraft had it right and we were spawned by a race of aliens that created us as a joke! Either way, like Norm says, it gets you thinking, wondering, that if there is a God then what are we to him? What stops him from smiting us or destroying our civilization?
Something else I got out of this one is that miracles are miraculous, yes, but what may have been sacrificed to become that guiding light, or that miracle.
Good to have some thought-provoking fiction to make us think, and that’s why The Drabblecast is a great charm to add to that bracelet your sister gave you this Christmas. They’re always there folks, plain and simple. Week in and week out delivering not only thought-provoking fiction, but the kind of stuff that turns you on to new things, concepts, ideas. So that’s why if you enjoyed this weeks episode or just like the pretty art, done this week by Adam S. Doyle then you should drop on by the donations page of The Drabblecast and show some love.
Good stuff this week topping off an awesome christmas weekend. Unspeakable Gibberer gives this one 4 out of 5 stars in alignment.
Happy Winter Solstice to all! Oh and Merry Christmas as well. The season is chilly and the days are darker, making it that perfect time of year cuddle up next to the fireplace and read some Lovecraftian fiction. We must have been good little ghouls and dhols this year because Mike “The Man” Davis has included some awesome stocking stuffers to go along with the new issue. Although they’re not all ready yet, Mike has managed to wrangle up three audio readings of stories, and has been hard at work trying to record every story in all the previous issues!
Real quick I wanted to mention the amazing artist that contributed work to this months stories. Ronnie Tucker, Galen Dara, and returning champs, Nickolas Gucker ,Mike Dominic, and Steve Santiago, all of who you might remember from last months issue. All very compelling pieces of art that I felt really reflected each piece properly. Nice job folks.
The big gifts under the tree this year were amazingly twisted and ominous, and I must admit, took a bit of my holiday cheer away for a while. But after I finished reading them all I was suddenly happy having had my prescribed amount of Lovecraftian fiction. Elder instincts, by W.H. Pugmire, Among the Dark Places of the Earth, by Julio Toro San Martin, At Best an Echo, by Bradley H. Sinor, Stone City, Old as Immeasurable Time, by Kelda Crich, and Just and Accountant, by Henrik Sandbeck Harskin. A couple of these tales in particular creeped me the hell out, and I hope you find them as uncomfortable as I did.
These are ones you have to check out and there is no reason why you shouldn’t be able to. Mike has made the eZine available for free since day one, but that doesn’t mean he’s not spending any money to continually bring you high quality Lovecraftian fiction every month. Those stories cost money folks, so if your feeling especially cheery this holiday season I suggest showing your jolly spirit in big way by donating to the Lovecraft eZine. Or if you’re a Scrooge or just feeling poor this time of year you can still do Mike and all the little elves at the Lovecraft eZine a big solid and talk about whats going on here. Tweets, Facebook posts, blog posts, likes, comments, etc. there all great ways to spread the word, and besides, if you wont give up the cash maybe one of the many people you inform about the eZine will.
Great issue this month and looking forward to see whats in store for us next year. This one gets 4 out of 5 stars in alignment folks. Merry Christmas, and a happy New year.
I came across a couple of cool videos produced by this little animation company called Eldritch Animation. Check them out!
Its been a while kids, but were back. I know I skipped the first of the two-part episode covering “Out of the Aeons” by H.P. Lovecraft, and Hazel Heald. I waited until the second part was out to cover the story because it just seemed like a smart thing to do. Then I realized that I haven’t mentioned anything about Chris or Chad or anything for that matter from the H.P. Podcraft Literary Podcast, and that’s no good.
Well when you know Hazel Heald is involved your going to get a few things; changing to stone, museums, and second-hand accounts of a terrifying story. Though the tales penned by Hazel and Lovecraft are extremely pulpy, most people seem to think that they are some of Lovecraft’s best collaborations. Yes, Lovecraft has been known to say anything but good things about the people he ghost wrote for, but as Ken Hite(and yes this link takes you to the Wikipedia page for Mr. Hite. Just for you Ken!) said, “Lovecraft slacking off is still loads better than virtuously anyone else working seriously”.
Out of the Aeons, basically a dumbed down re-write of “The Call of Cthulhu”, is a tale based around the events that transpire at the popular Cabot museum when a strange mummy exhibit begins to gather too much awkward attention. Using a little of his own mythos, Lovecraft spins a fictional web of stores, like “The Call of Cthulhu”, that connect in the end. I don’t want to give too much away, and that’s why you should head over to www.HPLOVECRAFT.COM and read this story along with so many more!
Something cool as well is that the past two weeks the show has been sponsored by J.R. Hamantaschen’s book, “You Shall Never Know Security”. We like this guys work, and if your interested you can check out our review of the book we did about a month ago.
This week we give episode 97/98 of the H.P. Podcraft Literary Podcast 3 out of 5 stars in alignment.
Just a little treat for your Wednesday! If I had dreams like this every night, I would probably kill myself. Enjoy!
In some of Lovecraft’s greatest tales he refrains from describing the horror itself in hopes that the reader’s imagination will take over and create a terrifying monster for him. However, we as humans must SEE the horror to confirm our thoughts are accurate in conceiving something so blasphemous that we love to think about it, yet pray to the gods that it really doesn’t exist. Luckily for us there has been a huge influx of artist whose psyche has been nurtured by the words of weird authors growing up, thus raising a new generation of visualists. Visualists who in the fashion of Goya, yet armed with digital pencils and photoshop, have begun to create compelling art that make most people uncomfortable when they get a glimpse. We like that stuff, and that’s why we like Steve Santiago.
I came across Steve while looking for a disturbing icon that I could call an unspeakable gibberer. I found one of his images entitled “Hybrid Horror” (click that link to see it), and inquired about using it. Turns out some of his work is locked, or need permission for use because of the stock photos used to create the image, and this was one of those. So, instead of waiting for the ok, Steve offered to create something for the site personally. Then wallah we were blessed with one of the creepiest damn things I’ve ever seen. Steve and his family dwell in Fresno, California where he is a graphic designer by day, and a father of 3 by night. He has a bachelor’s degree in graphic design and has been lucky to work in the field for over 15 years. This guy knows his stuff and is one of the friendliest people I have had the pleasure to chat with. I wanted to do a little bio/interview post for Steve because things have been blowing up for this guy lately; with upcoming projects with Drabblecast, and work with the Lovecraft eZine Issue #8, I realize this guy is going places. I decided to post a couple of interview questions to help some people realize that Steve is not as crazy as you would think from looking at his work. After the Q/A are a couple of pieces Steve has previously completed. Enjoy!
Who is your favorite artist/inspiration? The first name that comes to mind is Frank Frazetta. The way he captured motion and used color still amazes me. Also the old master, Vincent van Gogh, and for a modern artist I would have to say Dave McKean for his mixed media style of perfectly blending illustration with photos and sculptures.
Who is your favorite author? Wow, to single out just one would be a crime! Growing up I had many. Ray Bradbury, Isaac Asimov, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, H.G. Wells, Robert E. Howard, Jules Verne and of course, H.P. Lovecraft all fueled my young mind with thoughts of adventure, terror and Sci-Fi. I would then try to draw scenes from the pages I read or the covers but would fail miserably. I have to admit that I’m not much of a reader anymore. My sacred spare time is spent drawing or photoshopping for fun or competitions. But over the past year or so I have been brushing up on my Lovecraft and rediscovering his works all over again. Thanks in part to the H.P. Podcraft Literary Podcasts.
What got you into Lovecraft or weird fiction in general? My older brother and I grew up watching shows like “Kolchak the Night Stalker” “Night Gallery” and “In Search Of…” We were fascinated with ghost stories, UFO’s and creepy folklore. I was a teenager when my brother and I discovered the Michael Whelan illustrated covers that collected Lovecraft stories. That was our first experience with Lovecraft and I thought those were the most disturbing stories I had ever read, I loved it!
What is your favorite Lovecraft story? At the Mountains of Madness.
Do you have any hobbies? I’d have to say that since 2006 my hobby would be entering photoshop, illustration and logo contests that started on Worth1000.com and now on deviantART.com. It is very competitive and addicting! But it has been a great way to improve my skills. Always something new to learn.
Work/piece your most proud of? I’m never really satisfied with anything I do. I keep thinking I could have done better but I do like your web banner! I also like the cover I did for an upcoming Drabblecast episode. It incorporates 3 stories into the cover which wasn’t as easy as I thought it might be.
Do you have any goals or dreams to fulfill? I just had one fulfilled by having an illustration published (online) that has something to do with Lovecraftian fiction (The lovecraftzine.comissue 8 illustration for “The Time Eater” written by Adam Bolivar) and to do a cover for The Drabblecast which I have been a big fan of for quite some time. My Drabblecast cover should be out soon. So my new goals now are to continue to contribute art for The Drabblecast and be asked to create the cover for a future issue of the Lovecraft eZine. A long term goal would be to illustrate a book. I can dream can’t I?
With the work you’re doing for DC (Drabblecast), I’m curious if there is a story, or even an episode art that stands out most to you? Episode #206 entitled “Creature” that caught my eye and turns out to be one of my favorite Drabblecast stories. Excellent cover too.
What got you into DC? My love for podcasts lead me to find some really good anthology sites. Although when I first started listening to DC, I never imagined I would get the opportunity to do cover work for them. Thanks Bo!
Any future gigs you wish to get into/continue? To continue illustrating and photoshopping art for The Drabblecast and the Lovecraft eZine. They both have a great platform and continue to grow their fan base and I’m happy to be along for the ride.
As I write this now I see that Steve’s episode art for The Drabblecast #225 Trifecta XIX is out! good stuff, and to see that swing over to The Drabblecast’s new fancy site, or stay tuned here for a little review of this weeks episode. Below are some pieces of work that Steve has so nicely decided to share with us. For mor of these awesome pics, and to get know Mr. Santiago a little better, check out his stuff at http://www.quest007.deviantart.com.
Cover art by Jethro Lentle
Happy Thanksgiving to me! I was thankful this year for receiving an impressive issue of The Lovecraft eZine #8. One story after the next of compelling Lovecraftian tales that made my day when I got home after a day of glutinous gorging and family togetherness. Had my fill of both but what I needed to cap of the holiday were some creepy tales.
First I want to say great art work this issue by the likes of Leslie H., Stjepan Lukac, Mike Dominic, Nickolas Gucker, and our pal Steve Santiago (Who is responsible for how awesome this site is.) Second, don’t forget to help these guys out and throw them some donations to continue bringing great stories, artwork, and other goodies your way.
As much as I would love to critique each of these awesome stories, I think it would take too long and I might go off on a tangent, and those can be disastrous, like this one time I as at work and this guy walked up and asks, “Hey, I was curious about your tail… oops. Anyway like I was saying, this month we are lucky to have five great stories, and they are: “Desert Mystery! Gas & Go!” by Ann K. Schwader, “The Tunnel Inside the Mountain” by A.J. French, “#Dreaming” by William Meikle, “What Dances in Shadow” by Derek Ferreora, “The Time Eaters” by Adam Bolivar. Each one was a great read!
I spent a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend and as I look back, a big part of my enjoyment was born from reading these tales. Mike Davis is doing great things for the Lovecraftian community, and by making the Zine so available to everyone, he is helping to ensure a future of creepiness, and creative fiction.
Lovecraft eZine issue #8 for November gets a loaded 5 out of 5 stars in alignment. Cheers!