Sunday, September 7, 2014

Salt Lake Comic Con 2014

What a long strange trip its been. I have been all over over the place this year and now that the last big con I am going to is over its time to get back to work!

My most recent comment was an anonymous fan asking for me to finish my sequel to Heroes of the Fallen - it is coming, sorry for the delay. I'm going to try harder to post here at least once a week rather than just posting on facebook, twitter and tumblr. This needs to be a better catchall than just those other snowstorms.

In any case here are some highlights from SLCC - which was huge! My understanding is the numbers of people attending is right up there with SDCC or anywhere else for that matter so very cool! 120K+!

I got to meet Frank Frazetta Jr and the good guys at the Frazetta Museum Booth and get a few cool souvenirs!

Trolls were a problem as the WETA people brought quite a bit of LOTR goodness.

Lots of amazing cosplayers! Particular favorites of mine were Valerie Perez and Ivy Doomkitty

Being a presenter has its privileges, in the green room a number of celebrities were on hand and I hung out with Effren Ramirez (Pedro from Napoleon Dynamite) super fun and friendly guy!

I met Ron Perlman (one of my all time favorite actors!)

I nearly won the Space Balrogs, Supervillian Smackdown, but Dan Wells garnered just three more votes! And Jason King was hilarious!

Groot and Gamora! (Valerie Perez - so cool and nice!)

Daft Punk!

This guy was a stud! Great outfits!

Smaug's head was huge and ever watchful!

And selling books at a table with a host of awesome authors and friends including, Dave Butler, James Wymore, Craig Nybo, Sarah Seeley, Scott Tarbet, Jaleta Clegg, Sara Butler and Sean Ricks  - aside from their collective awesomeness was that the guys at UGEEK Magazine relaunched the magazine with a new action adventure fantasy serial of mine: Walking Through Walls. This went out to thousands of attendee's and I'm hoping even a decent fraction enjoy it and look at some of my other works. 
Lots of thanks to all the people that came by, said hey, asked for autographs and bought books, oh yeah and all the people who voted for me at the Supervillian Smackdown - We almost conquered the world!

I got to meet and hang out with far too many people to name them all, talked to so many great writers again - always love spending time with Peter Beagle. Til next time!

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Salt City Steamfest

I went to Salt City Steamfest in Salt Lake City over last weekend. I've been busy building my library and such among a dozen pressing family events but I still made spoke at several panels and participated in a few audience participation games run by my writing/comedy crew the Space Balrogs

And here are a few pics from the con!
The huge Dave Butler and I

The fantastic Kato surprised me with a kiss

Sarah Hunter aka Lady Clankington and I'm hoping she enjoys her copy of Fangs of the Dragon!

I won the Steampunk Smackdown game: Air Pirates Rule!

Cthulhu 3 

Steampunk Ariel was a hit

My son Mathias with Steampunk Boba Fett

We will be doing more con events and games at the upcoming Salt Lake City Comic Con, the Gangrene Film Festival and The Tree City Boise Comic Con! Just to name a few in the next couple months.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Fantasycon & Westercon Recap

I've shared a lot of these already but just going to put them here too for fun and a little more comment.

The Westercon 67 logo a Barsoomian landscape complete with a Thark and steampunk Porter Rockwell was done by the fantastic William Stout! More on him in a little bit...

Here I am signing books and having some good laughs with friends, Carter Reid (Artist extraordinaire of my Whispers of the Goddess cover, Space Eldritch 1 and 2, and the forthcoming The Mad Song and other Tales of Sword & Sorcery! I was on a couple of panels with him at Westercon and he is hilarious! Next is Dave Butler a phenominal writer and friend!, Nathan Shumate standing - he is behind Space Eldritch and designing my Bless the Child and Weird Tales of Horror cover, Seated is new fantasy writer and myth master B. Daniel Blatt, he does a wonderful reading of Beowulf in the original Old English!

 I met Peter S. Beagle, author of The Last Unicorn, very nice guy, I got to spend a bit of time with him in the morning before panels, talking writing craft etc. He has some great stories...
Had real good times with Larry Correia, dinner etc talking shop and all sorts of hilarity ensued. His fans seem to think of me as a mini-me ---- That I could do without. But in relation, I was asked last minute to go and guest speak at a fantasy comparison panel at Fantasycon across the street from Westercon (two cons going on side by side at the same time) I wasn't on the guest list so when I went over there I told them I was Larry Correia and the old lady at security beamed happy that I had shown up. Larry laughed when I told him how I got through security, and asked if I would be interested in completing the next three weeks of his book tour for Monster Hunter Nemesis!

Met Ksenia Solo (Sy-Fy's LOST GIRL) She was very nice. I've met starlets who felt like they were doing you a favor -she was very down to earth, I've only watched the first season, but always enjoyed her on the program. I asked what her next projects were coming up and she said she couldn't say, hope its something cool.

My wife was excited about the Regency Dance Recital at Westercon hosted by Mary Robinette Kowal, I'm more of a Sword & Sensibility kind of guy but my wife had a lot of fun.
I've been a fan of Donato Giancola for a long time, love his work, I got a small print of the cover I have for an edition of Lord of the Rings and had him sign a pair of Red Sonja cards. He even showed me a new Red Sonja in progress!

Brom is another artist I have been a fan of for a good long time, so excited to meet him and get Snakeheart! I've been enchanted by this painting, but didn't want to buy And Their Memory Was A Bitter Tree, so much better to have a limited edition signed print!

 There were an awful lot of cosplayers, here is one of the better ones I saw.

 Huge smoking dragon in the central hall.
I finally got a big signed print of all the Space Eldritch contributors! Thanks Carter!

Another great artwork I grabbed by the phenomenal Eric Velhagen of Morgoth vs Fingolfin.

 And now some William Stout who I realized after seeing him around the con, quite a few times - that I love his art and made it a point to get the Kong print and his book titled Inspirations, he did a custome signature and it is full of pulpy goodness!

I got a copy of my friend Nathan Shumates cartoon book, and he customized the front of all them with different cartoons, he did a pic of Dave Butler riding Larry Correia in Dave's,(Larry signed that one too!) when I asked what I wanted, I was still gushing over William Stouts pinups and dinosaurs so he merged them for my copy.

And Carter Reids, Undeath and Taxes has become my kids favorite book I brought home out of all of them including signed books by Larry Correia, Dave Butler, Carter Reid, Nathan Shumate, Sara Seeley, Peter Beagle, Mark Ryan and Peter J. Wacks- Bloodletting,    I sold a few books, made a lot of new friends - too numerous to mention everyone, it was a blast of a weekend - can't wait for September's Salt Lake Comicon!

Monday, June 30, 2014

Writing Process Blog Tour

A friend and writer whom I recently reviewed The CrusaderJP Wilder asked me about doing a writing process blog tour and so here it is!

Answer these four questions about your writing process. Answers can be as long or short as you wish. 1) What am I working on? 
I just released a new novella Fangs of the Dragon - a Porter Rockwell weird western - this was previously published in Monsters and Mormons and just recently in Weird Tales of Horror - so this is one of my experiments teasers - with a fantastic cover by the amazing Matt Page! I have several projects I'm trying to wrap up in the short term - collections of my previously published short stories, one will be a weird western collection and the other is a Sword & Sorcery fantasy collection - each will collect my published (or not) short stories. Feels good to have enough nowadays to actually fill their own antho's  After that, I need to hit on a historical fantasy sequel to my first novel Blood of Our Fathers and then I have big plans for a fantasy series titled Gods & Robbers.

2) How does my work differ from others of its genre? 
I mix up all my influences and life experience into my stories, which mine like yours is completely individual. I remix history books and stories I love with Rock N Roll and then throw in things that come from dreams, sometimes a favorite (or disliked) story that I would have done differently. All of us filter things differently so it all comes out different in the work.

3) Why do I write what I do? 4) How does my writing process work?
It has to come out! I have so many ideas bubbling to the surface and writing is a cathartic release for all those things running through my mind. I might go crazy if there wasn't a vent for the many characters talking and doing things in my head, so many tales to tell and adventures to be had.

4) How does my writing process work?
I usually ponder some ideas, jot down illegible notes, drive and think about story's I'd like to read,  then sit down and start running with it. I rarely use outlines, but I do refine my drafts quite a few times. Sometimes its hard to let things go. My large output for 2014 has been a long time coming of everything I've worked on for the last 4 odd years.

Thanks to J.P. Wilder for inviting me on this - I need motivation to post better this last year! 
and in continuing these writing process blogs I've connected with my friend and amazing writer Charles Gramlich  who writes whatever interests him, including fiction, non-fiction, and poetry, His fiction is primarily horror or fantasy: his non-fiction deals mostly with science or with writing or writers.

I gotta plug that I loved his Swords of Talera series and his Bitter Steel collection of heroic fantasy.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Birthday Book Bomb! Weird Tales of Horror

June 22nd was my birthday, on behalf of that, I am releasing my collection of short strange tales collectively entitled Weird Tales of Horror for .99 cents just for today!

I would sincerely appreciate your getting a copy and eventually leaving me a scathing review.

Among those who have had some kind words are the talented Wilum Pugmire and Bruce Durham

"With these tales of many lands and many peoples, David J. West combines an excellent prose style with a brilliant imagination to give us a solid collection of wonderful stories. This is a refreshingly original gathering of weird fiction." --W. H. Pugmire 

"David J. West, author of 'Heroes of the Fallen', is a strong voice in the field of Sword & Sorcery. His work is evocative, featuring deftly drawn characters, exotic locales and energetic tale spinning." -- Bruce Durham

Monday, June 9, 2014

Westercon 67!

I'll be at Westercon 67 in Salt Lake City over the weekend of July 3-6. Sitting on a few panels and signing books - including my soon to be released Weird Tales of Horror along with all the rest.

I haven't made it to a Con in a couple years so this will be a good time. I love rubbing shoulders with fellow writers, fans and new friends.

It's going to be held at the Marriott Hotel Downtown at City Creek at 75 South West Temple, Salt Lake City, Utah 84101 and directly across the street in the Salt Palace is Fantasycon - the beauty here is - they aren't in competition. A membership to either one, gets you into the other. (I'd like to see if I can get a signed Conan print by Brom - Paul!) So all told this gonna equal ONE BIG CON.

I've already made arrangements to be sitting next to D.J. Butler for the dealers room and ipso facto that will also put me next to Peter Beagle, so I've got to dig out a copy of Last Unicorn.

I'll put up a schedule when I can - its still getting ironed out. But I'm excited.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Read Lately: The Crusader by JP Wilder

The Crusader, by JP Wilder

“Honor is a thing not defined by your actions, but by your survival. If you survive and— praise to The God—emerge victorious, you may set the standards of Honor yourself” 

---Aaron the Savior. From The Crusader 

This is a great dark fantasy read. We are thrust into the tale of Aaron a hedgeknight who becomes part of an elite team known as the Darkmen, fighting a holy war versus the heathens. Now this isn't a historical, though it has resonance with those "Crusades" and Wilder does a fantastic job of characterization and granting the feelings of chaos men in war are bombarded with.

I was lucky enough to have lunch with Mr. Wilder, the other day - since I'm still in LA and he lives nearby and it was fun to visit and talk writing and inspirations. Very cool to hear about some of his characters and how they were influenced. I was enchanted by harsh deadly Raph and the sorceress too, as well as the twists with Aaron our protagonist. The Crusader had me from start to finish.

Only downside for me was how short this was, its really kind of a chapbook - but the benefit is a tight story and the sequels are coming on its heels very soon. Blue Eyes at Night! really looking forward to it. Highly recomended for all my S&S friends and readers.

And talk about fabulous covers! These are gritty and eye catching! Grab a copy here