talkin’ Resident Evil movies on A Podcask of Amontillado

I’m on the latest episode of A Podcask of Amontillado, the horror podcast hosted by Gary Mitchel and Erin McGourn. In this episode, entitled “Alice in Zombie-Land,” we talk about the six Resident Evil movies starring Milla Jovovich as Alice, and also featuring Oded Fehr, Sienna Guillory, Ali Larter, James Purefoy, Michelle Rodriguez, Colin Salmon, Wentworth Miller, Bingbing Li, Boris Kodjoe, Mike Epps, and more. Lots of zombies!

I wrote the novelizations of the first three RE films, and I’ve seen all of them, and we had a grand old time talking about the half-dozen movies.

Check it out here!

Star Trek: Enterprise Rewatch: “Exile”

Sato gets to star in her very own version of Beauty and the Beast! Or Phantom of the Opera, if you prefer… Meanwhile, Archer and the gang learn Important Things about the Delphic Expanse. The Star Trek: Enterprise Rewatch is cast into “Exile.”

An excerpt:

Thankfully, the story avoids the biggest problem with B&tB in particular, which is that it’s a rather creepy case of Stockholm Syndrome disguised as a romantic comedy, which has always sat poorly with me. (Even back in 1991 when the Disney animated version came out, I kept thinking, “But he kidnapped her! It’s not true love, it’s a damn felony!”) But even though Sato thankfully at no point gives in to Tarquin’s desire to keep her prisoner, there are so many little things that threw me out of the story. For starters, Archer just left her alone on the planet with this telepathic rando without any protection beyond a phase pistol. Seriously, why are the MACOs even there if they can’t provide security for a bridge officer stuck on a strange planet?

And then Sato is so nervous about being with this strange alien that she gads about the place in a tank top and shorts the whole time. Because the producers of Enterprise are never happier than when they’re sexualizing their female characters.

me and Alex Segura on the Graymalkin Lane podcast talkin’ X-Men #65

The Graymalkin Lane podcast is a delightful podcast about all things X-Men, and one of their features is to do an in-depth look at an episode. Covering issue #65 from 1970, it’s the only X-Men collaboration between the super-team of Denny O’Neil and Neal Adams (best known for their runs together on Batman and Green Lantern/Green Arrow comics for DC). This issue also had the “resurrection” of Professor X, with the revelation that the person who died in issue #42 was really the shape-changing Changeling posing as the professor.

Discussing that issue, which also has the professor leading the X-Men in repelling an invasion by the alien Z’Nox, are myself, the host Chad, fan George Michael, and fellow word-slinger Alex Segura, author of the acclaimed mystery novel Secret Identity, and who is also in two new anthologies with me, Thrilling Adventure Yarns 2022 and Phenomenons: Season of Darkness.

Check it out!

Star Trek: Picard‘s “Disengage”

Picard, Riker, Crusher, and Crusher’s kid are in trouble, and they have to depend on the Titan crew to save them, which is only a problem insofar as the Titan captain is a douchenozzle. Plus we find out who Musiker’s handler is, and it’s awesome. Plus Aaron Stanford plays a Ferengi because of course he does. My review of Star Trek: Picard‘s “Disengage.”

An excerpt:

As is often the case with Picard’s erstwhile aide, Musiker has to deal with crap from her past in order to do her job in the present. In this case, we meet Jay, who is the father of her son, whom we met back in “Stardust City Rag.” Jay has a more subdued version of the hostility their son showed in that first-season episode. Musiker’s ability to see patterns is so focused, so intense, that she goes down rabbit-holes, ones that often have addictive narcotics somewhere in the hole. Her search for Sneed against the wishes of her handler is a big red flag for Jay, but he helps her anyhow. Randy J. Goodwin does an excellent job of showing Jay’s exhausted frustration with his ex.

Star Trek: Enterprise Rewatch: “Impulse”

VULCAN SPACE ZOMBIES! What more need be said? Indeed, this is a surprisingly effective horror piece, which has not always been Trek‘s forte… The Star Trek: Enterprise Rewatch moves at “Impulse.”

An excerpt:

Hiring David Livingston was very much the right move, as he’s one of the stronger action directors in the Trek stable of the era. And the episode looks great, from the very effective visual of the asteroids crashing into each other to the spiffy-looking Seleya to Mayweather’s less-than-perfect landing on one of the asteroids to Livingston’s effective use of lighting, camera angles, and the icky makeup on the Vulcan Space Zombies.

my Pensacon 2023 schedule

I first went to Pensacon in 2020 and had a great time. Unbeknownst to me, it was the last in-person convention I would do that year, as the apocalypse hit in full force a couple weeks later. Hilariously, my first in-person convention after lockdown was — Pensacon 2021! And then last year, I skipped it due to the rise of the Omicron and Delta variants of COVID-19 and my fear that the con didn’t have stringent enough masking and vaccinating requirements (which, in their defense, they pretty much weren’t allowed to, because Florida’s governor is a psychopath).

This weekend I’ll be back for Pensacon 2023, and I really hope that it’s free of any concerns regarding viruses, pandemics, etc.

I’ll be at the Bard’s Tower booth, as usual, in E5 on the Vendor Floor, alongside a bunch of fellow word-slingers, among them Jonathan Maberry, Kevin J. Anderson, Andrew E.C. Gaska, Marion G. Harmon, Gama Ray Martinez, Rick Heinz, Sherrilyn Kenyon, and possibly some other folks……

Peculiarly, I’m not listed on the web site, nor have they announced my being there on social media — but I am listed in the app…….

Very weird. Anyhow, in addition to selling and signing books at the Tower, I’ll be doing two panels:


4.30-5.15pm: “Writing in Other People’s Universes,” w/Kevin J. Anderson & Jonathan Maberry (Clark Family Cultural Center Courtroom)


3-3.45pm: “Nerd for a Living,” w/Marion G. Harmon & Rick Heinz (Clark Family Cultural Center Courtroom)

Hope to see folks there!

talkin’ Trek on Journeys of Inspiration

Hysterics Studios has been doing an interview series called Journeys of Inspiration: Reflections on Star Trek. They’ve been talking to all manner of people about Trek, and one of the first people they talked to was me! The notion originally grew out of a panel that was supposed to be at Emerald City Comic Con in 2020 — except that con was kneecapped by the recent apocalypse. That panel turned into this interview series, for which my interview is actually the 25th installment.

Jeffrey Ayers and I recorded this in April of 2020, before I’d upped the bandwidth on my house wifi and before I got the fancy-pants camera for my desktop. And some of what I comment about is hilariously out of date now (like speculating about the possibility of a Captain Pike series, har har). But it’s still a fun interview where I talk about my life with Trek, as a fan, as a writer of official fiction, and as a critic.

Check it out!

now on sale: Thrilling Adventure Yarns 2022 and Phenomenons: Season of Darkness

Two Crazy 8 Press anthologies launched at Farpoint last weekend, and they’re now on sale to the general public.

Thrilling Adventure Yarns 2022 is an anthology edited by Robert Greenberger that has 28 pulp-style stories by a variety of nifty-keeno folks, including a new story by Doc Savage creator Lester Dent, plus tales by best-selling authors Jody Lynn Nye, Diane Duane, Raymond Benson, Greg Cox, Jean Rabe, Lawrence Watt-Evans, and Steven Savile; comics creators Harvey Kurtzman, Fabian Nicieza, Alex Segura, and Michelle Sears & Bart Sears; Hollywood veterans David Gerrold and Mark Verheiden; Crazy 8 Press stalwarts Peter David, Michael Jan Friedman, Robert Greenberger (him again), Russ Colchamiro, Mary Fan, Aaron Rosenberg, Paul Kupperberg, Hildy Silverman, and Geoffrey Thorne; as well as Jenifer Purcell Rosenberg, Lucienne Diver, Caitlin Rozakis, and pulp master Will Murray. Oh yeah, and also me: I wrote “Ticonderoga Beck and the Stalwart Squad” for this one, and it’s one of my favorite stories of mine.

Phenomenons: Season of Darkness is the second volume in the incredibly nifty shared-world superhero anthology created by Michael Jan Friedman. As with the first volume, subtitled Every Human Creature, my story in Season of Darkness is about Luminosity, the hero of the Bronx who can control lightwaves, but it’s also a big-ass team-up that includes Michael A. Burstein’s Red Sky, Mary Fan’s Sarcastic Fringehead, Aaron Rosenberg’s Black Hat, and Dan Hernandez’s La Colosa y La Particula. Besides my tale, entitled “This Little Light of Mine,” and stories by Michael, Mary, Aaron, and Dan featuring their heroes, as well as two yarns by editor MJF, there are stories by Russ Colchamiro & Hildy Silverman (a two-part tale featuring Penny Trouble and Syntax), D.H. Eisenberg (featuring Neutrino), Alex Segura (La Sombra), Robert Greenberger (agents of the Cyber Engagement Division), Paul Kupperberg (Torque), Peter David (Professor Paracelsus), Ilsa J. Bick (Darya and her pack), Marie Vibbert (Lipstick Lily), Glenn Hauman (<null>), and Geoffrey Thorne (Rascal).

I will update this post as more editions and dealers become available…

Star Trek: PIcard‘s “The Next Generation”

The good: a cool subplot with Raffi Musiker, Seven of Nine finally in a Starfleet uniform, some fun callbacks, the always-fabulous Orla Brady, and best of all the glorious double act of Sir Patrick Stewart and Jonathan Frakes and Picard and Riker. The bad: a plot that only occasionally makes sense, yet another Evil Captain (latest in a series! collect ’em all!), an inexplicable new Titan when we’ve barely seen the old one, and an uncharacteristically bloodthirsty Beverly Crusher, who’s apparently a Mom again. My review of Star Trek: Picard‘s third-season premiere, unimaginatively titled “The Next Generation.”

An excerpt:

Since the title character is an admiral, we can’t do the Evil Admiral cliché, so we substitute with the Evil Captain. Shaw, played with gleeful smarm by Todd Stashwick, is in the tired tradition of DeckerTraceyGarthEstebanMaxwellRansom, etc., ad nauseum. The deck is so totally stacked against him it bleeds into the absurd. He insists that Seven refer to herself as Hansen, a cruel and unnecessary insistence. He invites Picard and Riker to dinner, but starts eating before they arrive—and also leaves before they finish, which would be appallingly rude even if they weren’t VIP guests. At the gift of a bottle of Château Picard, he dismissively says he prefers Malbec (a Spanish wine), and he also makes his disdain for jazz clear, commenting that he had to delete all the jazz Riker had in the databanks when he took command. And finally, the guest quarters for an admiral and a captain that he provides is a single room they have to share with bunk beds, which is a protocol violation of the highest order.

Oh, and he refuses to change course as Picard requests, as Picard is a retired admiral, and Riker isn’t captain of this ship anymore. I mean, he’s right, but that doesn’t make him any less of a dick.

KRAD reading #102: “The Light Shines in the Darkness”

KRAD readings (formerly KRAD COVID readings) is back! After a one-year hiatus, I’ll be doing a new reading in the middle of every month. This time ’round, it’s my first contribution to the shared-world superhero anthology series Phenomenons, to wit, “The Light Shines in the Darkness” in the first volume, Every Human Creature, the story that introduces Luminosity, the hero of the Bronx.