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Book-To-Movie: ‘The Thing’ (‘Who Goes There?’)

It’s the third weekend of the month and so it’s time for another Book-To-Movie! In a Book-To-Movie, we review a work of prose fiction and its movie adaptation.

Horror and sci fi can go good with the holiday season, especially on cold winter nights like we’ve been getting here in the Sacramento Valley for the past couple of weeks. No snow but plenty of rain and cold, gray skies. But some of the best horror stories are set in snowy regions. This is the case with John Campbell’s classic novella “Who Goes There?”, more popularly known from its movie adaptations as “The Thing”. Campbell’s novella was first published in 1938 in "Astounding Science Fiction" magazine. Since then there have been three movie adaptations: “The Thing from Another World” (1951), director John Carpenter’s “The Thing” (1982) and Matthijs van Heijningen’s 2011 version also titled “The Thing”. While the two remakes fall short of Campbell’s original novella, mostly due to excessive gore overriding the story,…

8 Sci fi and Fantasy Bookstores For Your Holiday Shopping

It’s frustrating when you’re trying to look for that special holiday gift for that friend or relative who’s such an avid science fiction/fantasy reader that he or she already has nearly every book on the genre’s shelves in most bookstores. The shelves in these stores aren’t big enough to hold many rare editions of certain books in the speculative genre such as an author’s work that has been out of print for the last 50 years, that Bernie Wrightson-illustrated edition of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, or that signed copy of a book by a favourite author. You have a better chance of finding these rareties at a sci fi and fantasy bookstore, and so one that specialises in the speculative genre. But like many of the books it sells, this type of bookstore itself is rare. That’s why I composed a list of 8 sci fi and fantasy bookstores which consists of at least one store for each of the major regions of the continental U.S.: West Coast, East Coast, the Midwest and the South.



You can search for…

Using Spreadsheet Software To Manage Your Writing Time

It’s time for another Insecure Writers Support Group (IWSG) post! Every first Wednesday of the month we writers bring our writing challenges and problems out into the open to share with each other and try to come up with solutions.

We all know December is one of the busiest months of the year. There's holiday shopping to do and relatives and friends to visit and give seasons greetings to. And as writers, most of us know how much more busy it can be when we have writing projects going  in addition to these seasonal activities. This is especially the case if you're like me and wrestle with time management.



Time management has always been a relatively poor skill of mine. This is regardless of several years of handwriting onto paper writing schedules that include details such as deadline dates and time slots for working on specific projects. These schedules don't seem to be very encouraging because they cause too much paper build-up and come across as unfocused, messy and inc…

Stephen King Funko and the Cutie-fication of Horror

I’m just finishing up reading my copy of Stephen King’s early short story collection, Night Shift, which has some really good stories in it with plenty of scares. I’m not a huge fan of King’s work although I will read it and so do like some of it. So, I am a fan of a sort. But some interesting news about him has been going on for the past few months. The latest of this is that Funko, the manufacturer of bobble head-style vinyl figures called Pops, will be coming out with a figure of the author. Although Funko has made Pop figures of numerous classic horror monsters as well as modern ones, Stephen King will be only the second horror author they have made a vinyl figure of.


Funko will offer two different versions of the Stephen King figure: 1) his everyday look version, which is his look of today only with the dark colour returned to his slicked-back hair; and 2) the Barnes and Noble exclusive red-headed version. What? Since when was Stephen King a red head? Since they made this second…

Book-To-Movie: ‘John Carter’; Bonus Movie Review: ‘Doctor Sleep’

It’s the third weekend of the month and so it’s time for another Book-To-Movie review! [link] In a Book-To-Movie we review a work of prose fiction and its movie adaptation. This month’s Book-To-Movie is a review of Edgar Rice Burroughs’s A Princess of Mars and the Disney movie adaptation. And as I said I would in the previous blog post, I also have a mini movie review for you of Doctor Sleep, the new movie based on Stephen King’s novel of the same name!



Book-To-Movie: ‘A Princess of Mars’/’John Carter’

Warning: Potential spoilers.
Even though it didn’t become the pop cultural icon that his Tarzan character did, Edgar Rice Burroughs’s John Carter series of books has influenced several of the best-known science fiction writers of all time, including Ray Bradbury. The first of this 11-book series, A Princess of Mars, was published in 1912 as a serial under the title of “The Moon of Mars” in All-Story Magazine. It was one of the earliest science fiction stories to be published in pulp fict…

Game for My Novella; Horror Comic Review; Lightning News Flashes

Halloween’s come and gone again, but the horror and fun haven’t ended. Now we’re in the month of NaNoWriMo in which I’ve been working on my novella for. Also, there’s upcoming horror films and comics. That said, in this post I have a comic book review for you and Lightning News Flashes  covering a sci fi horror movie and the state of science fiction short stories.


Working on My Novella for NaNoWriMo  For NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) I’ve been revising my sci fi horror novella that I wrote during the NaNoWriMo of a few years back. I kind of put it on hiatus back in October to concentrate on promoting the print edition of “The Boo Brothers”, now available at Amazon, and the Halloween book sale which I hope you had a chance to check out before it ended. So now it’s back to revising the novella, which so far I’ve titled Invasion of the Avatars.

I just finished writing out the details of the game for Avatars. No, there’s not going to be a game based on it (not any time soon at…

Generic Verb Vs. Brand Verb

It’s time for another Insecure Writers Support Group (IWSG) post! Every first Wednesday of the month we writers bring our writing challenges and problems out into the open to share with each other and try to come up with solutions.


The IWSG question of the month is "What's the strangest thing you've ever googled in researching a story?" Before I answer that question, I'm going to make a change in the wording of it but the meaning will be essentially the same. So, to rephrase the question: What's the strangest thing you've ever discovered in researching a story on the Internet?

The reason I rephrased the question was because I try not use brand names for verbs like I try not to use them as nouns to refer to a general product. For example, Google is a brand of a search engine, it is not all search engines or just any search engine. This proper noun of a brand name has been casually used as a verb that means to do an internet search. It's similar to usi…

Free Sci Fi Horror Tale for Day of the Dead!

I hope you all had a groovy Halloween! I did. But now I'd like to wish you all a Happy Day of the Dead! So did you think all the spirits and dead things end with with October? Well, think again! Day of the Dead, a holiday originating in Mexico and with both indigenous and European roots is celebrated for our deceased loved ones on this day and throughout the month of November. Like the Irish brought their Halloween with them here to the U.S., Day of the Dead came with the Mexican culture in this country. To find out more about this hallowday and its similarities to as well as differences from Halloween, see last week's special Halloween post! I have a segment on there from an even earlier blog post that talks about these two festivals.

As a Dead Day gift to all of you, I'd like to present a free copy here at the Fantastic Site of my short sci fi horror story that commemorates the hallowday. I apologise for any formatting that may be off course. For some mysterious reason i…