December 23, 2011

Wishing you a Merry Christmas

To all who follow this intermittent blog or “like” me on Facebook or are fellow Twits, Twitterers, or whatever: Have a blessed Merry Christmas and a Bright Shiny New Year!


December 14, 2011

Get Your Hands on the Sony Playstation® Vita!

It seems that you don’t have to wait until February 22nd to get a Sony Playstation® Vita. Of course, you won’t be able to take it home and you’ll have to share but, hey, whataya gonna do? Now until December 30th, you can try out the new mobile gaming rig as the Sony Playstation® Experience rolls into the Grapevine Mills Mall food court.


This mobile gaming platform seems to bring a lot of new tech to the table and I have to admit, even though I’m not a mobile gamer myself, I wouldn’t mind testing this one out. WiFi and 3G, front and rear-facing camera, dual analog joysticks, front touch screen, and a rear touch pad. It’s just packing a whole lot of awesome! Go to the Sony Website to check out the demo video and then get on over to Grapevine Mills Mall (3000 Grapevine Mills Parkway) to run it through it’s paces.

Again, The Sony Playstation® Experience is only in town until December 30th and then you’ll have to wait until February 22nd to get one of your own. When you get done drooling all over it, come back here and let me know what you thought of it.

October 20, 2011

FenCon VIII Recap with Photos

Got a chance to go visit the fine folks at FenCon. Happened in Addison where they always have a great turnout. My friend Tom Branch and I got there in time to listen to Tee Morris and Pip Ballantine on a panel about steampunk. I got to get my copy of Phoenix Rising autographed and a photo together with them. I truly enjoyed meeting them.


Also, got to listen in on Gail Carriger. I read her first book, Soulless, and wanted to get it signed but due to time constraints, couldn’t get to her in time. I did get her photo, though. Was very amazed to find out that she is an archeologist, but she deals more with the archeological materials which if I’m not mistaken is about the tools that made certain items. Don’t hold me to that, Google it.


Was, also, able to speak with Rachel Caine and P. N. Elrod who shared a table together. Very nice ladies and Mrs. Elrod was nice enough to give me one of her books on tape since I . . . still have . . . a tape player. Nonetheless, a most wonderful lady and look forward to seeing them again soon.


I always have to stop by the table of Gloria Oliver and say hi. She’s got the same spot every year and I have yet to find where they engraved her name. Everyone seems to know that it’s her spot. I picked up her latest and can’t wait to find time to read it!

If you get a chance to go next year, you won’t be disappointed. It’s always a lot of fun and the authors are more than happy to talk to their fans! If you’ve got any photos to post, put the link in the comments section. Here’s the link to my album.

October 6, 2011

Fan Days October 8-9 2011

Collectible Cards and Priority Pass

This will be my first time to visit the Fan Days event. Usually didn’t have the money or the time to go in the past, but I made a little money on Amazon (I know, my ex-co-workers from Borders will be burning me in effigy) and splurged to get the early price for a priority pass. Plus, they threw in two soon-to-be collectible cards that were used to help promote Fan Days in Toronto and Atlanta. So, with lanyard round the neck, I’ll be waiting to see Lando and Mr. Sulu.


Billy Dee Williams PsiNetI’ve picked up a copy of a book that Billy Dee co-wrote with Rob MacGregor and will get him to autograph it for me. Then I might even read it. Ah, I’m pretty sure I’ll read it. It’s about the military using psychics and such and when I’m done I’ll write a review for you.



Colt 45 Billy Dee WilliamsThen a friend of a friend posted on Facebook this nice little gem that he got off of eBay. Can’t wait to see what Billy Dee has to say about that!



What’s the weirdest thing that you’ve ever had a celebrity, author or artist sign? Show pictures if you can!

October 5, 2011

Secrets from Beyond the Stars or Hints at the Next Book in the Series

Ronald Dunn The Wisdom of Solomon 09202011I got an email from Ronald Dunn yesterday and it’s got hints as to what he has in store for Rob, the main character of his novel The Wisdom of Solomon. For those that don’t remember, I wrote a review for Ron back in April of this year and eventually went to work helping him promote it. Anyway, I read the email and was so giddy with anticipation that I dropped what I was doing so that I could call him to drop what he was doing and tell him that I wanted that sequel RIGHT NOW!

Knowing that wasn’t going to happen, I told him that I would have to just go back and re-read the first one until he finished. Here’s what he’s told me so far.

Rob has got himself into a mess like no one in the history of mankind.  He now has not one, but two monumental problems.  First, he must deal with the fact that his 65 year old mental self is now encased in the physical body of his 9 year old self.  His brain power, which has been tremendously enhanced by his association with an alien spacecraft, does not work well with his young, immature body.  He must now face every situation, including his interaction with his parents and brother, knowing that he must “act his age”!  How about school?  Can he somehow act normally in front of all his classmates from 56 years earlier.  Back then he was known to interrupt class proceedings and get in trouble with the teachers because of too much talking.  Now, what will everybody think when he remains mute because he knows opening his mouth will surely provoke much more severe problems!

    Secondly, Rob has lost his telepathic connection with Torena, the alien woman who helped him travel back in time to his childhood.  His connection with Torena is his only tie to his prior place in the time continuum and he knows, that without her help, he can never be careful enough to keep from changing his previous future; unless he can, somehow make it back to the cavern in Northern New Mexico!

If you haven’t read the first book then you need to click on picture. It’ll take you to his website and you can purchase it there. This is definitely gonna be a humdinger of a ride and I can’t wait. How about you? Have you read it?

September 19, 2011

Black 7 Comics is a new face in Lewisville

I happened to be out running errands the other day when I decided to run through this little shopping center that used to house a comic book shop and a used book store. The comic/game shop had changed names once before going under and it may have been more before I came along, but I was sad to see both disappear. Every once in a while I would drive through hoping that someone would give it another go and Friday it looked like someone had.

Terry Black moved in and opened about six weeks ago. Though the sign says comics, like all comics stores out there, he does carry games. He has the basic RPGs like D&D 4E and Pathfinder, but his main crowd is Magic: The Gathering, Pokémon! and Yugi-oh! He is definitely interested in building an RPG crowd, maybe doing a Wednesday Night Encounters group, but so far, no dice. No pun intended . . . well, okay a little. If you are an experienced DM and would like to run some games, it wouldn’t hurt to check him out.

It would seem that I wasn’t the only one to find him. Check out this article by Lewisville Public Library Roleplaying. If you do decide to go in, be sure and bring this coupon and get some change knocked off your purchase. Oh, and be sure to tell him you read about it here!

August 25, 2011

Armadillocon 33 underway this weekend!

Due to a death in the family, this will be just a quick blurb. Armadillocon 33 will be this weekend, August 26 – 28, in Austin Texas. Check it, lots of great authors including some of my local favorites and Bruce Sterling. Check it out at Armadillocon 33!

dillologoclearArmadillocon Armadillo

August 21, 2011

Bad movies or just not great movies

I'm testing my phone app to see how easy it is to post. So far, the only drawback is that my carpal tunnel kicks in way too soon.

Big question! Friends have told me to stay away from Conan on the big screen. Is it that bad or just a good movie that failed the hype? Give your opinions for a follow up post next week.

August 9, 2011

Cowboys and Aliens and Aurora Texas!

phoenix-risingFirst order of business is the Lewisville Book Club meeting this Friday night, August 12th, at the IHOP. Kick-off is at 7:30 P.M. and we will be discussing Phoenix Rising by Pip Ballantine and Tee Morris. Excellent book! I’ll try to find time to review it. This is the first book that I’ve actually finished on time for the meeting, so that’s a testament to how much I enjoyed it. See this previous post for the book trailer.


So, following our last book discussion we were talking movies. Cowboys and Aliens came up and no, I haven’t seen it yet, but plan on going. I wondered out loud where the guy came up with the idea for the comic on which the movie is based when I remembered a story in the news about an alien crash here in Texas. Doing a little research, I found that we were only 40 miles from where it supposedly happened.

Unfortunately, I didn’t find the video below before we went, so we may be making a return trip. I want to find that well and that tree. Here’s a link to the photos that we took. No evidence of extraterrestrial life but maybe on the next visit. You can also see Aurora in season 3 episode 1 of Ancient Aliens on the History Channel.

Channel 13 out of Houston talking aliens in Texas

If you happen to make the trip out there be sure to have an appetite. There is a little restaurant called Tater Junction and they have got some of the best home cooking you’ll ever get this side of your grandma. The ladies there are the sweetest things and love to converse with the customers.

DNAlienYou’ll also find the DNAlien series of novels by Jim West at the register. Mr. West is a native of Texas and has written a story of a government-grown alien on the run. Using the local area as setting, it sounds like a good read and I will eventually get to it as soon as I knock my stack down a little more. If anyone has read it, shoot me a review and give me your take on it.

Has anyone been to Aurora before and if so, what did you find? Is there life out there? Let me know what you think!

July 18, 2011

Studio Movie Grill offers up some great viewing options

If you’ve never been to a Studio Movie Grill or a theater like it, then you need to crawl out from under that rock. The concept is to offer food and drink while you watch your movie and now Studio Movie Grill is offering up some great options for your viewing pleasure.

One of the first things you need to do is to join their email list because sometimes these things are not offered on the website. They are pretty good about sending about one a week, so it doesn’t flood your inbox.

Transformers-3-Poster-1024x768One of the first offers that I saw in my email this week is a code for a $6.25 ticket to see Transformers: Dark of the Moon plus a free soda. And sodas get free refills! If you opt for the 3-D ticket there will be an upcharge but I’m not sure how much. If Michael Bay ‘splosions in your face are your thing then 3-D it up! Oh, and if you’ve got friends, I think your able to print out more than one but there is a special way of doing it so that you get a unique barcode each time. Just read the instructions on the coupon. I’m not sure how long the promotion is going on, but the link still works.

GooniesNext goodie from the email is the SMG with a Twist night. July 21st for only a dollar . . . wait for it . . .  wait for it . . . . GOONIES! Okay, so I’m a big kid, but this movie is awesome and I love it and I get to see it on the big screen AGAIN and for only a dollar! See Samwise Gamgee and Jonah Hex as brothers! Did I mention that it was only a dollar! And you’ll still be out in time to stand in line for the midnight showing of Captain America!

And last, but not least, and this is not in this week’s email, FUNimation hosts an anime viewing every second Tuesday of the month. Best of all is that it’s free! That’s right, free. BUT, you do have to RSVP through their account. You can find that here and register for the next showing on August 9th. You can enjoy episodes 1-4 of BAKA & TEST – SUMMON THE BEASTS.

Baka & Test - Summon the Beasts

July 12, 2011

Of Dyson Spheres and refueling dying suns with wormholes

Friday night was our monthly book club meeting in Lewisville and oh, the many topics we tossed about! This month we met to discuss Alastair Reynolds’ novel, House of Suns. As usual, I was a little behind on my reading and so had only finished about a third of the book. Thankfully, I was not the only one, but we had fun discussing what we had read so far.

This is a great read and Alastair Reynolds is a forward thinking writer. One of the ideas in use is the idea that a person will be able to create their own clone and then pass their memories on to the new one, thus making themselves immortal. Thus, “you” can essentially cross hundreds of thousands of light-years and have all the experiences that you attain in that travel.

Refueling a dying sun by funneling in more fuel through a wormhole is a unique use of said hole. Always knew that a wormhole could be used to transport all kinds of things, just never thought of doing that. And the use of Dyson spheres is really really cool, but you’ll have to read the book to find out why.

Below is a video that describes an alternative to cold fusion that is more efficient and practical than what they’ve been trying in research. Yes, we discussed this, too. What? TOO geeky for ya? Come join us next month when we’ll be discussing Phoenix Rising: A Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences Novel by Pip Ballantine and Tee Morris. A little steampunk ought to ease the mental strain. Book trailer is below the fusion video.

Focus Fusion


Phoenix Rising by Pip Ballantine and Tee Morris

July 4, 2011

Lewisville SciFi Book Club will discuss Alastair Reynolds ‘House of Suns’

If you are available this Friday night, June 8th, the Lewisville SciFi Book Club will meet at the IHOP at I-35 and Round Grove Rd. to discuss the 2008 Alastair Reynolds novel House of Suns. Even if you haven’t read it in a while or are a few pages shy of finishing it, come on in for a great discussion. The group usually starts about 7:30pm but show up early if you like to get some food ordered. We’ll be in the back room, the hostess will know where. The IHOP is located at 2345 S. Stemmons Expressway along the service road on the north side of the highway. Hope to see you there!

Alastair Reynolds House of Suns

June 14, 2011

A-Kon and Gone!

I didn’t get to go to A-Kon this year and I always say that I’m going to go. It seems there is always something hindering me. Usually, it’s money, but this last year I’ve had a lot heaped on my plate. Anyway, here’s a write-up by D Magazine (click the photo) for their website. It has a video and photo link, also. If you went and have photos, give us links in the comments!


June 6, 2011

Lewisville Science Fiction Book Club and man, does a month move fast

June 10, 2011 will be that Friday night again for the Lewisville Science Fiction Book Club. We’ll be discussing the book “Directive 51” by John Barnes and even though I bought the book two days after the last meeting, I’m still finishing the previous book. So, now I’ve got four days to finish it and this is the week that I start a new job. Plus, I’m still trying to promote my author, Ronald Dunn, and his book “The Wisdom of Solomon,” and keep this site up and running. Sometimes, I think I make things too hard on myself.

Directive 51 John BarnesWe are to bring in four titles that we’d like to suggest for future reads. Our group is not necessarily “hard” sci-fi, but we don’t tend to stray far. What are some reads that you think we might enjoy?

And if you have read “Directive 51” or are midway through (which is probably where I’ll be) stop by the IHOP at I-35 and Round Grove Road around 7:30 PM in the back room and join us.

Now, what are those book titles again?

June 4, 2011

X-Men with Friends (and family)

X-Men First ClassMy wife and I have had a $50 gift voucher from Fandango since Christmas. We finally got to use it yesterday. Finally. It’s not like we haven’t tried. Of course, we’ve only been to three movies since the holidays. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Pt. 1 was the first. We forgot that we had the certificate. Then the in-laws kept the kid for a weekend and we decided to see Thor. We were running behind and had about ten minutes to get into the theater when I found out that you had to order the tickets online and use the certificate there. Almost twenty dollars for two people. Man, I love my Netflix.

This time we were successful. The wife was off early on a Friday and the kid had a few hours left at daycare, so we took full advantage with lunch and pre-purchased tickets for the 2:20 at Vista Ridge. A quick call to a friend that I left hanging for the midnight showing and we were set. Fortunately, said friend is very understanding of commitments with family and doesn’t dog me about it. Too much.

I read comic books but maybe not to the extent of some. I know the origins of the heavy-hitters and some of the smaller arcs, but X-Men I’ve never been to educated on, so if there were a flub somewhere, I wasn’t gonna notice it. If I have questions, then said friend is available. The guy is a veritable walking wiki.

Enjoyed the movie, though wife and I agree that the origin stuff was a little dull here and there. I thought the whole naming bit while they hung out at the secret hideout was a little cheesy, but then I figured, hey, they’re kids and I got over it. Kevin Bacon plays a good bad guy, but I thought his ending was little lame. Would’ve loved to see him go out better than he did. All in all, the ending could’ve been a little better.

In closing, a decent movie, better than number three but not as good as the first two. Don’t take my word for it, go see it, make your on judgement and let me know what you thought. Oh, it was good to see Michael Ironside and Oliver Platt, just wish they had bigger roles.

May 20, 2011

Texicon and ReaperCon

Two conventions this weekend for you gaming nuts! Texicon is in it’s second year and is for all lovers of board games, role-playing games, and miniatures. In addition to actual game play there will be seminars on how to get the most of your gaming time. Follow the link to see more info, and trust me, there is a lot!


ReaperCon is a convention held at the headquarters of Reaper Miniatures in Denton, Texas. They have a few gaming sessions and lots of painting seminars. If you are into miniatures, this is a good place to go. The staff are super cool and they show you how the miniatures are made. I’ve seen their name around since I started playing back in the day. Here’s the link and check out their new miniatures just for the con! (Just click the picture!)

Adventure Sophie Reapercon 2011 miniatures

May 18, 2011

Stan Lee, Leonard Nimoy and Carrie Fisher headline Dallas Comic Con

May 21st and 22nd are two big days that a lot of people are going to remember for a long time! Dallas Comic Con has come back to town and signing autographs are three huge names in comics, TV and movies!

stan_leeStan Lee will be manning a table to sign your favorite photos or memorabilia and I’m sure he’ll entertain with a favorite story or two. This is his first showing Dallas in over ten years!




Leonard Nimoy is questionable on his retirement, so this may be one of his final appearances. Aside from being cast in two J. J. Abrams projects, Star Trek (affiliate link) and Fringe (affiliate link), he will soon be heard as the voice of Sentinel Prime in the upcoming Transformers: Dark of the Moon.


ON THE LOT: Actress, author and screenwriter Carrie Fisher ("Star Wars," "Postcards from the Edge") serves as a judge on the new moviemaking competition series ON THE LOT premiering Tuesday, May 22 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2007 Fox Broadcasting Co. Cr: Mike Yarish/FOXCarrie Fisher has a wonderful career so far with movies and a Broadway play based on her book, Wishful Drinking (affiliate link). I loved her siting in Kyle Newman’s Fanboys (affiliate link)  She does the voice of “Angela” on Family Guy (affiliate link) and has been on several shows across the networks.


The show will be at a different venue this year, so make sure you check out the map! The program guide is up on the site so that you can see the civic center map, also. Anyone got plans to go and if so, whose the main autograph that you’re looking for?

May 12, 2011

Lewisville Science Fiction Book Group and Dave Ramsey’s Stupid Tax

Cowboy Angels Paul McAuleyLouis Barber is the head of a small book club here in Lewisville that used my store for it’s meetings before we closed the doors about 6 weeks back. As much as I wanted to join the discussions, it never failed that I was either working or out of town or something else had plans for me. Well, I contacted Louis just the other day to find out about the next meeting and found that I was almost too late. I wanted to participate so bad that I decided that I was going to find the book and make a go of it come whatever.

Since I had some remaining Borders Bucks and a coupon and still had my Plus membership (thank you Borders management for not taking that away) I decided to head to the closest one and pick up a copy. Didn’t really think about how far away it was until I was half-way there. Doing the math, with a coupon, $5 in credit and an extra 10% off for the Plus card the $16 book only cost me $5 and change. But, the 40 mile round trip made up the difference in the 2 1/2 gallons of gas at $3.89 a gallon. I ended saving .75. If you’re familiar with Dave Ramsey's Total Money Makeover(affiliate link), you’ll know that he calls this a “stupid tax”. Kind of like driving 10 miles for gas that’s 3 pennies cheaper. By the way, my wife and I used Dave’s makeover to get rid of $43,000 in debt in 23 months. It can be done.

Anyway, I’ve got my book and learned my lesson. If you have read the book or are still working on it, come find us at the IHOP just off of I-35 and Round Grove on Friday night. So far Cowboy Angels by Paul McAuley(affiliate link) is pretty good. Turing Gates and military spies. Good stuff!

This month’s meeting of the Lewisville Science Fiction Book Group will now be held at the IHOP (International House of Pancakes) near the northwest corner of I35 and  E. Round Grove Road. The meeting will be on Friday 13th, 7:30 pm.  (Safest day of the year as all the crazies are hiding). This month’s book will be “Cowboy Angels” by Paul McAuley.

May 10, 2011

Jaye Wells and Nicole Peeler Book Tour! Oh, My!

Jaye Wells Tour Snark-La-TexFor fans of Jaye Wells’ Sabina Kayne series of books, you’ll be happy to know that she is doing a short tour of Texas and Louisiana signing copies of her latest book, Green-Eyed Demon (affiliate link). If your new to the name, she’s a local author and this is her third novel in the series. She and Nicole Peeler will be traveling together across the two states and dealing out snarkiness where needed on their Snark-La-Tex tour.

I have not had the chance to read any of her novels, but now that I have more time on my hands due to the store closing, I may try some of her short fiction. You can find more titles on her website. I did happen to meet her on two occasions. She was at FenCon a few years back and then later she happened to grace my counter at the local Borders where I worked.
Nicole Peeler and I have not met, either in person or in reading. She authors the Jane True series of novels with the first being Tempest Rising(affiliate link). I have seen these on the shelves and coming through my register, so I know there are fans out there. Again, she has samples on her site if you have never read her.
Jaye Wells and Nicole Peeler will stop first on the Snark-La-Tex Tour at the Borders in Allen, Texas on May 15th at 4:00 PM, so that gives you plenty of time to get out of church, get fed, change clothes, go meet these ladies and get back to church. Visit their sites to read the first chapters of their books, find out other tour dates, and read all the juicy gossip that they come across.
Have any of your read a Jaye Wells or Nicole Peeler novel and if so, how did you like it?
Jaye Wells’ Website
Nicole Peeler’s Website

April 29, 2011

Texas Frightmare Weekend 2011

I’ll be heading out to the Texas Frightmare Weekend on Sunday. I have to make sure my girls are feeling better first. The kid has a fever and Doc says it just takes time with this particular virus causing it. The wife has her chemo sickness, so it will wear off too.

I’m not usually a big horror fan. Nowadays what passes for horror is just glorified gore and that’s just not me. I long for the days of Hammer Studios (affiliate link) and the likes of Vincent Price. The original House on Haunted Hill (affiliate link) is a classic and Price is . . . well, Priceless.
Robert Englund Freddy Krueger MaskI am excited about the show though because they’ve brought in some great actors. Yes, Carey Elwes is there for all you Saw fans or even you Princess Bride ones. But, I’m holding out for Malcom McDowell, Robert Englund, Angus Scrimm (Phantasm franchise), and Doug Bradley (Pinhead of Hellraiser). It would have been really sweet, but Keir Dullea cancelled out on the show. The name may not be familiar, but he played David Bowman in 2001: A Space Odyssey! (affiliate link) I’m sure he had good reason. The musician Voltaire, who I did not know was a film maker also, will be there and hopefully performing somewhere close by. I’ll let you know if I find out.

Oh, and mentioning Hammer Studios, May 4th at the Royal Lane Studio Movie Grill, it’s the Horror of Dracula! It’ll play at 10:00 pm and I’m definitely trying to get to that. Anyone want to watch a wife and kid for me? (that’s a joke people)

April 22, 2011

Changes to the website

You may have noticed that I’ve been posting a little bit more as of late. With the loss of the old job, I’ve had some time on my hands. Even though the wife still struggles with her brain tumor, she is back at work and that is a big blessing, but I need to try and fill in where I can. I’ve been cleaning house, doing laundry, and making sure that she and the kid are fed on schedule (more the kid than the wife) and taking care of all the little things that we weren’t able to get to when I was working. It also means that our weekends are free. Getting the girls out of the house and into the sunlight helps everyone and moods are lifted. I’m able to plan meals which means less eating out and healthier choices.
As these are all big pluses, there is still a lack of funds coming into the coffers. So, by utilizing what I have, I am trying to remedy that. One of the ways that I’ve started is by hiring myself out to local authors to help promote their works and themselves. It’s slow work, but the gentleman that I reviewed last week has become one of my first customers. Ronald Dunn is the local businessman who wrote a novel as a bucket list item and I was impressed with his first outing. He was impressed that I was impressed and so we’ve become associates of a sort. I will be putting a disclaimer on that review, so that someone doesn’t think that I was coerced. My opinion of the novel was developed well before the work relationship.
Another way of making a little scratch is by monetizing this site. You’ll see some affiliate links to Amazon. Yes, I know after the failure of my bookstore this seems a little ironic, but I don’t see Amazon as being the great destroyer. There were a lot of factors that led to the downsizing of Borders Books. I will also be placing a Netflix widget on the page. I’m a big fan of Netflix and have used them to replace my cable. With streaming technology, I’ll be saving almost $100 a month and I’ll watch a lot less TV.
If you have any suggestions about other ways to make money using my blog, let me know, or if you just have suggestions in general, I’m always glad to listen!

April 20, 2011

The Society for Fantastical Research & Exploration

Always on the lookout for new and intriguing groups around the area, I found this one centered in Plano in my email box this morning.

A place for those interested in steampunk, dieselpunk, clockpunk, cyberpunk, circus & cabaret as well as a bit of mystery, mayhem and the paranormal. Gather, talk or create havoc...we'll decide as we go along.

The above description from their page sounds like a lot of fun and I may have to check it out. I’ve been in a steampunkish mood as of late. Soulless (The Parasol Protectorate) by Gail Carriger (affiliate link), The Affinity Bridge (Newbury & Hobbes Investigations) by George Mann (affiliate link) and now I’ve got The Buntline Special: A Weird West Tale by Mike Resnick (affiliate link) in queue. You can join The Society for Fantastical Research & Exploration through here. If you know of any other groups in the DFW area, let me know.

April 19, 2011

Great Weekend: Art Show and Air Show

One of the benefits of unemployment is the ability to have weekends off no questions asked. My wife’s job is one that she has that option but in the retail business it’s almost out of the question.
Art in the Square DoggyWith a full tank of gas (yikes! the prices!) we were off to Southlake for Art in the Square hosted by the Southlake Women’s Club. I had actually heard about this from a friend on Facebook and thought that it would be good to get the wife and kid out in the sun. It wasn’t too warm and the wind was blowing. Breezy, not hurricane. Tons of artists with really cool works of art and lots of ideas for the wife’s beading hobby. The kid just was happy to be mobile and she got to meet some nice doggies.
Sunday we were off to Fort Worth for the Air Power Expo at the Joint Reserve Base. They were celebrating the 100th anniversary of Naval Aviation! Being a former Navy twidget (that’s electronic technician to all the civies) I wanted to see the Blue Angels and all the other beautiful aircraft they had. We decided to leave the kid at a friend’s house due to the heat and noise. We got there a little after eleven not realizing that there were no signs off of the highway pointing to the base. I hadn’t been there in almost fifteen years, so I was little fuzzy on the location. Missed one of the first demonstrations but not a lot I could do about that.
Plenty of classic aircraft to go round and awesome air power on display. Below are just some of the aircraft we saw and you can follow the link to my Facebook page to see the rest. Granted, we didn’t see the Blue Angels. The wife’s cancer saps her strength and with the all of the walking and them flying late, we just couldn’t do it, but if you live in the area and ever get the chance, don’t pass it up. It’s free and so is the parking.
DSC02558 DSC02572
DSC02587 DSC02622
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DSC02639 DSC02644

April 13, 2011

Blips on the Radar

This upcoming weekend has few options for you to get out of the house and enjoy this lovely weather before the heat kicks it up a notch. 

If your headed out of town, say, Oklahoma City (it could happen), then be sure and visit the Steampunk Exposition April 15th through the 17th. If your not sure what is steampunk, here’s a good description from their website. Unfortunately, I want be able to make this one. I was hoping to make it up there to see the Hellblinki Sextet. The lead singer, Andrew, is my wife’s cousin and I really want to see the band live. Check out some of the videos here.

If you have no plans of leaving the area, then head over to Ft. Worth for the Air Power Expo 2011 at the Joint Reserve Base. The Blue Angels will be making an appearance as well as other demo teams. The really great thing about this show is the fact that admission and parking are both free!

April 10, 2011

Book Review: The Wisdom of Solomon by Ronald Dunn

This article has been edited 9/28/2011 to reflect changes in availability of the book.

While on vacation, Rob discovers an alien space ship that had been entombed in a mountain cavern for centuries. They exit the cavern together and their future becomes inexorably intertwined, both mentally and spiritually. The ship, named Solomon, and Rob discover time travel with the help of an alien woman, Torena. Rob becomes obsessed with returning to his boyhood days as Torena becomes his mentor in his quest. The Wisdom of Solomon is a compelling story of how we influence each other as we speed down the rocky roads of life. Many decisions will affect the future, but some may even affect the past!

Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: HIS Publishing Group (August 25, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0615519180
  • ISBN-13: 978-0615519180
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.9 ounces
Let me start by saying that I never ever will tell you that you shouldn’t read a book or see a movie. I will tell you if I liked the story or not and then I’ll explain why. You, as a grown adult (or young person) are smart enough to make your own decisions based on what I’ve written here.

I read the back cover of The Wisdom of Solomon and thought to myself that it sounded vaguely reminiscent of Stephen Coonts’ novels Saucer (affiliate link) and Saucer: The Conquest (affiliate link). Typical “Hey, we found a saucer. What do we do now?” fare, but upon getting into the first couple of pages, I soon realized this would be anything but that. Having not read anything from the first perspective in some time, I was a little thrown off at first, but I soon settled in and started to question what was happening and wondering what the characters would do next.

The synopsis at the top of the page pretty much says it all, so I won’t go into too much detail for fear of giving something away, but let it be known that a sequel to The Wisdom of Solomon is required and I, as well as his fans, have let Ronald know that. The book is a very enjoyable read and one that didn’t take me very long to get through, which is really saying something when I’m juggling a child, a job, a sick wife, and a other duties.
This is considered Christian fiction and I know that some readers turn their noses up at it, thinking that it will just be preachy and heavy-handed in verses, but let me stop you there and just say that it is a well-told story and to give it a chance. You won’t find any colorful language, in fact, he tells me how his wife questioned him on the use of the word “damn”. This is a story of whether, to borrow from another story, the tin man can get a heart. Not a lot on showy space battles, but plenty of “what if” makes this a thought-provoking read.

I think what makes me enjoy the book even more is the story behind it. Ronald Dunn admitted that he wrote the book as a task on his bucket list. Being a fan of the TV show Star Trek, it was an idea that he had been bouncing around for years. Finally, he decided to do it and after a little over three years of working in secret at his office, he handed a copy to his wife for Christmas. He kept it secret from her the entire time!

In parting, I like the book. It’s simple story-telling that leaves you with questions to mull over. Nothing jumps out as a disappointment, so I don’t think you would be at a loss to check out this book.

Ronald Dunn will be signing copies of his book on May 7th at 2 p.m. at the Barnes & Noble of Highland Village. Here’s the link.

You can contact Ronald Dunn at his website, his Facebook page, or The Wisdom of Solomon Facebook page. The book is available through the author's website, and in eBook format through several websites.

March 16, 2011

All-Con 2011 will bring out the steampunk in you!

This next weekend, March 18-20th, will be another installment of All-Con and the theme is “Steampunk”! Victorian dress and gadgets galore! Even though I’ve always been more of a mainstream sci-fi/fantasy guy, I find myself reading more and more steampunk as of late. Gail Carriger’s Soulless, George Mann’s Affinity Bridge, and Tim Power’s Anubis Gates are all favorites of mine and I tend to look for other books in the genre when I’m shopping. This will be a good place to shop for those books and so much more. Below are several blogs covering the upcoming event and if you happen to go and take photos, please send me links so that I can post them. I, unfortunately, will be dealing with the continuing liquidation of my store. Soon, I will have all the time in the world to hit the cons. See, there’s always a silver lining.

Do you have a favorite steampunk novel? Well? Don’t bogart the title, dude, give it up!


March 11, 2011

New Super 8 trailer

Found this as I was walking out the door to work and didn’t want to wait to post it. I’ll talk more about it later.


March 7, 2011

Zenith showing at Studio Movie Grill

This is showing at the Dallas, Texas Studio Movie Grill at Royal Lane and 75 Central Expressway at 10 pm from now until Wednesday night. If you get a chance, check it out. Looks pretty cool!

ZENITH 2011 TRAILER from Surla Films on Vimeo.

February 28, 2011

Life’s little ups and downs

It seems that I will soon have more time to put towards my blog and I’m happy, yet deathly afraid. I work(ed) for Borders Books and though our store is in the middle of liquidation, I still have a job for at least the next few weeks. (At this point in the rough draft I went on a little rant but have decided to replace it and continue on with my originally intended post.) I will be posting more frequently about local events, movies, books, comics and such that touch the genres of sci-fi, fantasy, and horror. I’ve always had the vision that this blog be a central point for people seeking info about these kind of events in the DFW area.

With this new found time, I’m hoping to enlist folks, like you reading this, into helping me finding more topics to write about. If you know of events that others may enjoy or something that your excited about, send me an email (you can see it at the upper-right hand of the page) and I’ll do a little write up on it.

I’m also looking to do more reviews of books and movies. I will be going back over award lists, such as the Hugo’s and Nebula’s from years past, reading them and offering my view on what made them a winner or asking the question, “What were the voters thinking?” In movies, I will find lesser known or obscure movies and give you my take on them.

With the lack of a job, I will be looking at ways to monetize the site. If you are already a reader of this blog, you may find it annoying in some way, and I can understand. But, I’ve got to do something to pay bills. My wife has a medical condition that will follow her until her dying days and we have a little one to feed, clothe, and educate. This is my passion. Talking about things that I love or find interesting. So, if you don’t like the ads, please look past them and continue to visit. I will probably also dabble in affiliate marketing, but I promise to not make it so unavoidable as to make your reading experience a chore. Also, look to my eBay store that I will be working on over the next week or two. Lots of books, posters, games, and other assorteds that I cannot house in this small apartment. I will provide that link in another post when I get it up and running.

I want to make this your first place to visit when your looking for something fun to do or just want to know what’s going on in the genres. So, let me know what you like, don’t like, want to hear more about or see, or just to say “Hey!”

You can also find me at:

A Galaxy Called Dallas' Twitter

A Galaxy Called Dallas' Facebook

A Galaxy Called Dallas' Goodreads

February 23, 2011

Wonder Woman on NBC

Wonder WomanYou may have or have not seen the news of a new pilot episode of ‘Wonder Woman’ being worked up. Adrianne Palicki of ‘Friday Night Lights’ and the new ‘Red Dawn’ will be taken over the mantle of Wonder Woman. Officially held by Lynda Carter, but also played by Cathy Lee Crosby at one time, Palicki will play Diana as a CEO billionaire and also the assistant to that billionaire.

Where I get worried is that David E. Kelley will be writing and executive producing the show. He’s known for ‘Ally McBeal,’ ‘Boston Legal,’ and the now-airing ‘Harry’s Law.’ With that in mind, I can only picture Diana as a thin waif, not the Amazon that she should be, and all of her adventures taking place from the office. That’s what scares me. I hope that all involved will have a little more reverence for the character than that.

More info can be found at and this wiki page.

How do you feel about it? Wonder who is Wonder Woman? Care less? Let me know!

Oh, and my first pick for Wonder Woman would have been Sarah Lancaster of Chuck! See for yourself!

                 Linda Carter - Wonder Woman107139_D_1831

February 18, 2011

ConDFW X is at it again

Looking for something to do this weekend, then head over to the Crown Plaza on Alpha Rd. at the corner of Coit and 635. ConDFW is a literary-focused sci-fi convention celebrating it’s tenth year bringing you closer to your favorite writers. This year you can meet Jack McDevitt, Tim Powers, Brandon Sanderson, and Brad W. Foster will be in attendance with a slew of local authors selling, signing, and paneling. Check out the link here and have fun this weekend!

February 8, 2011

Death of Spiderman (Sort of)

Johnny Storm aka The Human TorchHave the comic books gone kill-crazy as of late or is it just me? Last month, we saw Johnny Storm a.k.a. The Human Torch snuffed by a tide of aliens all to save The Things life. And now, they look to squash Spiderman in the Ultimate Universe.

Now, this is not something new. And the heroes have always come back. So, at what point does it start getting tiresome? At what point does the consumer say that they just want to get back to good stories and get past the gimmicks? And one point was brought up about not revealing any news about it, but letting the reader find out in the comic. There’s something we haven’t seen in a long time!

How do you feel about killing off characters just for the sake of selling comics? Or does it even bother you?

The Week OP-ED

January 31, 2011

A challenge has been issued #Postaweek2011

So, I’m sitting at a local deli on lunch break sucking up wi-fi and a ribeye sammich, when I come across an article about how Wordpress has put out a challenge to bloggers of all levels. Just a simple poke to get everyone to post at least one article a day for an entire year or for those of us who have full-time jobs that do not incorporate the said blogging, to at least post once a week. I figured this one of the few challenges that I could actually live up to, so here it is in black and white, folks. Even if I don’t have much to say, I’m gonna say it right here.

It’s always been my intentions to make this website more than what you see here. I want it to fulfill a need to the geek/gamer/fanboy(girl) community and I think it will one day. Unfortunately, the best laid plans something something something, and with this past 2010 those plans got pushed aside. The birth of our child just over a year ago, the finding of my wife’s tumor, the removal, chemo & radiation, and the subsequent bill of clean health, and then finally the whole fiasco of disability payments have left us spent and tired, but still with a smile on our face because she is still here, the kid is healthy and growing, and we’re still alive!

Now 2011 is here and though I’m getting a late start on this, I have decided to try and put forth a little effort and see what I can get done here. If you have any suggestions, comments, or complaints then let them fly. After what I’ve been through, your worst can’t hurt me and I welcome it with arms wide open.

So, all ten of you reading this. What brought you here? What did you hope to find? Did you? What can I do to fix it? Let me know that your out there. Will I quit writing if I don’t hear from you? Not likely; I’m a little vain like that.

January 14, 2011

Women of Sci-Fi Expo in Plano, Texas

This next Sci-Fi Expo will have a little something for everyone! January 29th and 30th will see caped crusaders and space warriors left and right from television, movies, and comic books and from past and present. I’m especially fired up to see none other than Nichelle Nichols of the original Star Trek and Morena Baccarin of V and Firefly. One of the things that I’ve noticed about the price of autographs for the ladies is that they aren’t quite as expensive as the male celebrities. Are the ladies not as big of a draw or do they understand that most of us don’t have as big of a budget as we’d like? What’s your take on it? Are you an autograph collector or are you like my wife and just can’t fathom it?

Morena Baccarin - V Nichelle Nichols - Uhura - Star Trek
Click here to see all the other lovely ladies that will be gracing the hall that weekend!