May 26, 2013

Lord of the Rings and other Fantasy as Post-Apocalyptic Tales

[A Guestpost by Larry Kollar / Image by JohnnySlowHand]

(Disclaimer: as a writer, I do understand that “apocalypse” is actually a revelation, but for this article I will adopt its common meaning of an all-encompassing disaster.)

Many classic fantasy tales have a post-apocalyptic element. Of course, as for most Western-based fantasy tropes, Tolkien is the standard-setter. (Tolkien’s ages of Middle-Earth parallel Greek mythology, which named the four Ages of Man: Golden, Silver, Bronze, and Iron. I’m guessing, given his background, that this was deliberate.) The backdrop for Lord of the Rings includes two former ages, each ended by their own apocalypse. The end of the First (Golden) Age, when Morgoth was defeated, was accompanied by great destruction—it was said the lands were broken, and Beleriand began to sink into the sea. The Second (Silver) Age ended with Númenor sinking into the sea, and the formerly flat world being made round.

May 19, 2013

Author Interview with Prabh S. Mokha

Hi Prabh first of all, could you tell us a bit about yourself.
I was born in London and after a few years of travelling have settled with my family in the New Zealand wilds. On the way I have undertaken corporate stints training as a Chartered Accountant in the UK and New Zealand, and I have undertaken public service stints as a volunteer for charities. At present I wear a number of hats of responsibility at a High School.

May 15, 2013

Star Trek: Into Darkness - Movie Review

Finally begins the season of summer blockbusters. J. J. Abrams Version of Star Trek was a massive Hit, grossing more than any previous movie in the iteration. an incredible achievement from a man, who never watched Star Trek before getting into the production of the movie. What followed was a fresh look on an old series and lots of lens flares. No one knew at that time that this man would also become the director of the Star Wars movie, being the leading head for the two biggest Sci-Fi Franchises ever. A role that comes with great responsibility, but is he capable for that? Find out in this review about the future of at least one of the two:

Author Interview with Julian E. Farris

First of all, could you tell us a bit about yourself?
Originally from Jacksonville, Florida, an educator and now first-time novelist, I grew up among ultra-conservative  racist and homophobic attitudes during the 1950s and early 1960s and saw first-hand the corrosive effects on individuals who were different because of their skin color or sexual orientation. Two events in particular provided the tipping point in my education—the suicide of a friend at the University of Florida in 1958 during the state's purge of  gay and lesbian students and teachers, and "Ax Handle Saturday" in  August of 1960 when white supremacists with baseball bats and ax handles  attacked young black activists engaged in a sit-in. These two events influenced the next thirty years in my personal development and to the writing of my novel, The Sin Warriors.

May 11, 2013

Author Interview with Helen Howell

Hi Helen, first of all, could you tell us a bit about yourself?
I live in Australia but am originally from England. I've been writing for just over four years and I write in several different genres which include fantasy, noir, horror and humour. Before I took up writing I use to paint watercolours which I exhibited at various art shows for over 18 years. When I gave that up, writing seemed to be the natural extension. Writing is really like painting pictures with words. Since I started writing I have had my work published in both e-zines and printed publications. Also some of my stories have been showcased on various blog Fests.

May 6, 2013

Standing Out in a Carbon Copy World

[A Guestpost by Cate Russell-Cole / Image by FlorentCourty]

If all writers thought and expressed themselves the same way, all books would be the same. Fortunately, they aren't. We enjoy libraries stocked with diverse characters, settings, views and approaches. There is always something new to discover. It whets our appetite for thinking outside our own style and genre.