Come on and join author Melissa Bradley as she sets off on her latest adventure...


If you are not 18, please exit stage left. While there is normally nothing naughty here, I do write and review erotica so there are links to spicy stuff and the occasional heated excerpt.

Monday, July 30, 2012

My Liebster Award

Happy Tuesday, Imaginarians! Have you all been enjoying the Olympics? I have. Go World! I'm really excited, today, because my good blog buddy, Kaijinu over at the horror film site Sticky Red: A Body Count, has tapped yours truly for the Liebster Award. How cool is that?

Now the acceptance rules are as follows:
1. Each person must 11 things about themselves
2. Answer 11 questions posed to them by the person giving them the Liebster.
3. Create 11 questions for the people I am giving the award to.
4. Choose my 11 suspects and link to them
5. Visit their sites and tell them
6. No tag backs.

So 11 Things about me you don't already know...LOL What haven't I told you? And if I have repeated myself, don't tell me. Just laugh and let it go. I would be most appreciative

1. I love Starbuck's Green Tea Frappuccinos. I think I have a serious addiction.

2. I do not know how to swim.  I do not even know how to float. Which leads me to...

3. I don't like being in water. I don't mind rain, I love to be on water in a boat, I love walking along lakes, beaches, etc., but I will not be in a pool for more than forty minutes or an hour. Same goes for lakes/rivers/oceans. I just don't like it, never have and never will.

4. I love to color. I have boxes of crayons and all of these dollar store cheap coloring books. I love it, there is something about filling in color that relaxes me.

5. I am uncomfortable in crowds. I can handle it for a while, but when I am done, I am DONE. Move out of my way or face my wrath. I once had to sit for an hour and a half in a Six Flags Great America park area I was so bad. I cursed out poor Wile E. Coyote when he dared approached me. I am probably the only person ever called a bitch by a cartoon character.

6. I once owned an Easy Bake Oven and used to put all manner of dough in there to bake. What a great toy that was.

7. I love, love, LOVE tequila. Jose Cuervo is my best friend and my bitch. I once downed 6 shots in about 2 minutes, limes and salt included. I was lit for the night, needless to say. My hangover the next day was cured by aspirin and a can of Coke. And it is the only alcohol that has not made me vilely sick.

8. My first horror film in theater was Friday the 13th the Final Chapter, which is actually Part 4, I think.

9. I took ballet as a kid. There is a picture of me in a bee costume that I will have to post sometime.

10. I make really excellent pasta with homemade sauces. So if you're ever in my hood...come on over.

11. I am a sports junkie and my mouth runs away with me at games.  I am fiercely loyal to my teams. Yes, I am that obnoxious loudmouth behind you at games and I have superstitious routines on game day. Don't mess with them, I'll cut you.

11 questions from Kaijinu

1. Had you ever daydreamed about something and what's the most memorable one you ever had? I day dream all the time, it's part of how I write stories. Of, course I write erotica and write about werewolves.. Those are some pretty wild daydreams. LOL.

2. Who's the one Comic Book hero you NEVER want to see made to a movie out of respect and fear of flopping? Haven't thought about that because every comic book I read has been made into a movie. 

3. Will you try to dance Jamie Lee Curtis' disco scene in Prom Night (1980) with a partner? Heck yeah, I love to shake my booty every now and again.

4. Name one of the least likely movie franchise entry that suddenly became your number one fave? Well,  I love all the big franchises, but probably Friday the 13th. I came in on the middle, was not a horror fan yet, and now it's one of my fave film franchises of all time.

5. What's the weirdest experience you had involving a movie? (theatres, DVD releases, etc.) The first time I went to midnight show of Rocky Horror. I got whacked by bread, squirted with a water gun, then bashed my head. All in 6 in platforms with a purple wig. 

6. Did you ever had a crush on a fantasy character in your teen years? If yes, who? Yes indeed, I did. Indiana Jones. I just started helping out at a local archaeology dig and those movies were hot at the box office. 

7. If a movie character out of your fave flicks suddenly appeared in front of your doorstep, who will it be and what'll you do? Tallahasse from Zombieland and we are so getting Twinkies and going zombie hunting.

8. WATCH OUT! EXTRA TERRESTRIALS! And you have a tool shed behind you! What'll you do? Go in, grab the biggest spade, shears and weed whacker, then start fighting.

9. With all these news on rocket launches, disease outbreaks and people killing each other, how close do you think we are before things go 28 Weeks Later? A few months. I'm practicing my crossbow.

10. If you had the power to change yer appearance, who's face yer gonna try first? Author Stephenie Meyer so I could retract all the Twilight crap and have Edward staked then have Jacob shot with a silver bullet. All by Bella.

11.Worst tasting delicacy you ever encountered? Cavier. Blech!

 My 11 Questions

1. Most over-rated actress/actor?
2. You could travel anywhere in the blink of an eye. Where would you go first?
3. Strangest subject you have ever seen listed in a college course catalog and were tempted to take.
4. You and your friends are fighting off zombies, what is your weapon of choice and why.
5. What superhero would you be if you could?
6. What is the worst movie you have ever seen in the theater?
7. Favorite Monster
8. What reality show would you like to see cancelled?
9. If you could eliminate one global problem, what would it be?
10. Best car you've ever owned.
11. What was the first thing you ever bought with your first paycheck?
My Honorees
I'm going with 11 as 1+1 side by side. I know it's probably cheating, but...These are two blogs I love and need to make more time for. I hope they don't hate me for putting on the pressure here. :)

The Geek Twins Maurice and Nigel have one of the coolest, most geektastic sites on the web
A Piece of My Mind Julia Phillips Smith A writer of fantasy and lover of books and movies.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Friday Fun

First, big congrats to Michelle Pickett, whose debut novel Concilium drops today. yay, Michelle! Please head on over and give her some well wishes.

Today, I am in dire need of a good laugh, so I am posting some of my fave funnies here. The first is "Captain Hareblower" a 1954 cartoon pitting Bugs Bunny against the dread pirate Yosemite Sam. I still get a belly laugh out of these two.

This second little cartoon is Daffy Duck as Robin Hood, a hilarious favorite of mine. Note, when I laugh really hard, I look and sound remarkably like Porky Pig in here, a wheezing, heaving uncontrollable mass.And yes, I do fall out laughing. What can I say, I love to laugh and I throw myself into it.

Happy Friday! I hope you enjoyed these little ditties today. Hope you all have an awesome weekend. I am going to be writing and watching movies. I'm thinking I am in the mood for fantasy and adventure. Or perhaps a good tale of war, preferably WWI. What will you be doing?

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

It's Hump Day

It's Wednesday, aka Hump Day, the middle of the week and almost Friday. I know it's been a while and I want to thank you all for not hunting me down like angry torch-bearing villagers. If you did leave a comment on my Crow post, I did respond, very late and I am sorry about that. Craziness and I have a rotten summer cold.

So I got to see The Dark Knight Rises this past Saturday night and whoa! I had a blast and can't wait to see it again. You can check my review at The Movie411. I got to see it at Ikon, which is this really swank theater in downtown Chicago that has VIP seating. We get to sit in recliner-like seats with call buttons for waitstaff that will bring you goodies and alcohol. What an experience! No 3-D, but I'll take recliners and booze.

In book news, the incredibly talented M. Pax from Wistful Nebulae has a brand new story out, Stopover At The Backworlds Edge. Here is a little bit about this brilliant new tale.

The Backworlds Book 2 is Out!

The sequel to The Backworlds is now available. Craze and his friends continue their adventures in Stopover at the Backworlds’ Edge. See what role chocolate plays in the galaxy this time.

The interstellar portal opens, bringing in a ship that should no longer exist. A battleship spoiling for a fight, yet the war with Earth ended two generations ago. The vessel drops off a Water-breather, a type of Backworlder thought to be extinct. She claims one of Craze’s friends is a traitor who summoned the enemy to Pardeep Station. A betrayal worse than his father’s, if Craze lives to worry about it.

Available for all ereaders from:

iTunes and Kobo will be available shortly.

If you haven’t read The Backworlds yet, it’s available as a free read from many outlets. See HERE for links. [http://mpaxauthor.com/the-backworlds-series/backworlds-the/]

And in other awesome sauce news,  I have received an award from one of the coolest horror bloggers out there,  Kaijinu at Sticky Red: A Body Count Compendium has tapped me with the Liebster Award. Yay! I will be doing a full on acceptance post shortly. Thank you so so much, Kaijinu!

So what did you all think of The Dark Knight Rises? Have you seen it? Do you want to? Anything cool and exciting you want to share?

Sunday, July 15, 2012

The Crow

"People once believed that when someone dies, a crow carries their soul to the land of the dead. But sometimes, something so bad happens that a terrible sadness is carried with it and the soul can't rest. Then sometimes, just sometimes, the crow can bring that soul back to put the wrong things right."

Today I want to share my thoughts on a film that resonates with me on every level.  I fell in love with The Crow from the first moment I saw it. It's a glorious, almost Shakespearean, tale of revenge, lost love and justice that spoke to directly to me. Compound that with the tragedy surrounding the production and source material and well, needless to say it seared itself into my writer's soul. This is sacred cinema to me, an untouchable film whose mark must surely be set in stone.

The Crow defined a cultural tide which birthed grunge rock and gave rise to a disaffected Gen X, who had survived the saccharine sugar coma of the 80's, Reagan Republicanism and hair metal. More over, it is the opus of a young actor whose life was cut tragically short. When I heard that a remake was planned, not sequel, prequel, but an actual remake, I was seized with horror. Yes, I bitched about the Evil Dead reboot and snark blasted the upcoming Dirty Dancing retelling, but none of those left me as disturbed as the remake of The Crow.

It is a project that has been in the making for at least four years. I believe that it has been plagued with problems and constant cast changes because no one wants to really touch this mythic tale. And yet, the studio persists. I have heard the cast choices to portray the titular vengeful rocker and ultimate badass, Eric Draven. Bradley Cooper, Mark Wahlberg and Channing Tatum...No, no and no. I cannot wrap my mind around any of them, let alone picturing a single one donning the iconic black and white makeup. They've had various directors attached to the project as well, who have all left for a multitude of reasons. Juan Carlos Fresnadillo is the latest and  most likely to stay. While I like him and he would surely do a decent job, I'm still violently opposed.

The Crow is a legendary picture in which all the stars aligned  and an epic was born. First, there is the source material. Created from the ashes of James O'Barr's eight year labor of grief to try and overcome the death of his fiancee, The Crow is the ultimate story of the power of love. David Show and John Shirley took this incredible series and turned it into an unforgettable screenplay. Eric Draven, the young rocker murdered along with his fiancee, crosses back to the world of the living on the wings of a crow to take revenge on the thugs who killed them. Brandon Lee, a rising young star was chosen to play Draven and gave the performance of his career. It was sadly to be his last as an on set accident took his life with just eight days left to shoot. Director Alex Proyas, with the blessing of Lee's mother and fiancee, finished the film and it became a dedication to Brandon's life. The rest of the cast, which includes some stellar character actors like Michael Wincott, Tony Todd and Ernie Hudson, is an assemblage of perfection. Each one of them became their characters.

A film  like this required a soundtrack that was second to none and Graeme Revell delivered in spades. The haunting music captured the essence of Eric's post-industrial, hard scrabble world and included bands who literally defined that period of time: Stone Temple Pilots, The Cure, Rage Against the Machine, Nine Inch Nails, The Jesus and Mary Chain and Pantera to name but a few. I can't imagine another soundtrack other than this one. Who would they get now? Danny Elfman? Black Keys? Not.

To add even more storied history to this film, after Lee's death, Paramount Pictures pulled out, leaving the cast and crew high and dry. Miramax then stepped in and ponied up a further eight million dollars to complete the picture. Indeed, The Crow is more than a film, it is both epic and epitaph, a movie that should never, ever be remade.

Brandon Lee is forever Eric Draven.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

How To Survive A Heat Wave

My fat rear end has been roasting of late, so I have collected many a tip for fighting the heat, keeping your cool and some other etiquette tips to keep you and others from going homicidal.

1. Plastic kiddie pools  make great ice baths and beer holders. Fill that ancient kiddie pool in the garage with some bags of ice, put in beer and let chill. When the ice becomes water and the drinks are gone, you have a great cold foot bath.

2. On your walk, hit every sprinkler on the route. I have a six block walk to my bus. There are 23 homes that run their sprinklers in the morning. I hit every one on the way to work. It's so hot, i'm dry by the time I get to the office. There are 18 more that run them on the trip back to my house at night.

3. Ice Cream, popsicles and other frozen treats have no calories or fat at this time. As soon as you eat it, you sweat it off on one walk around the block.

4. Illegal, but fun...Open fire hydrants.

5. Use movie coupons and spend as much time in the theater as possible. In this heat, I'll even pay to watch Nicholas Sparks films and/or Twilight. I'm paying for a nap, but in this heat, who cares?

6. Libraries are free places to cool off and read a few good books in the process.

7. Use deodorant at least twice a day. People, we are in close quarters on the bus, I do not want to smell you from downtown to the South Side. If I do, I will cut you.

8. Yeah, heat means less clothes, but if I have to see your sweaty, sunburned  beer gut, I will cut you. Same goes for those size 700 tube tops.

9. Take that thong bikini off your three year old. It's nasty, not cute.

10. SPF 45 works very well for those of us whom the sun does not like very much. I'm what my dad called fish belly white and only burn and peel. Even my Lakota genes are not enough to overcome the overabundance of Lithuanian, German and Irish in me.

11. Fans...Lots and lots of fans. I'm particularly fond of the little ones that mist water. 

So how do you beat the heat? Any good tips?

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

IWSG Write What You Want

Hello there! It's the first Wednesday of the month and time once more for the Insecure Writers Support Group. If you're not familiar, the IWSG was founded by the incredibly cool Alex J. Cavanaugh, sci fi writer, movie geek and rockin' axe man. Here writers can air out all of our frustrations, insecurities and fears. We also encourage each other, share our triumphs and pass along any advice that we found helpful.

Today I'm going to have at that old adage "write what you know." I do not even know where this started, but it is probably one of the worst pieces of writing advice I ever received. Now, I know that this  probably was meant to encourage me to get out those stories I had brewing about my personal experiences. It's also meant to urge that biologist to write that text book that had been brewing in her brain since she started at her local university. That's all well and good, but...

Why write only I know? Research and world building are part of the joy in being a writer. If you write only what you know, why bother researching? Learning? Why create a whole new realm? Creativity is a limitless gift, don't allow the words "write what you know" to curtail that power. Instead, use it as a stepping stone, maybe write about the alien invasion of your town. I created werewolves in my own neighborhood. Don't be afraid to write about fighter pilots or samurai because you don't know those worlds. Write what you want, what you'd love to read about. Your voice is yours and is only limited by you.

What was the worst piece of writing advice you ever received?

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

I'm Miserable

What better way to start off the week than to rant, I ask you? It is so hot here in Chitown, I start to cook in my own sweat after walking out my front door. WTF Mother Nature? The US Fourth of July holiday is tomorrow and as I live in the hood, it's time for me to once again play my annual game, "Firecracker or Gunfire?"Most times I can tell, but there are times where it's pretty difficult because I'm not listening close enough or the noise is too far away. Judging by some of the booms, I'm pretty convinced that the people down the block own a cannon and that they've been re-enacting Gettysburg. Nice to know I live in a state where fireworks possession is illegal.

I've been having my mom stay with me because, are you ready for this Imaginarians? Her central air unit was stolen. Yep, you read that right. Her central air unit was stolen. Those little thieving rats came and pried the whole damn thing right off of its platform. And her homeowners insurance has been ever so helpful. She's a 66 year old asthmatic with heart problems and we get  "a/c is a privilege, not a medical necessity or a vital part of the home itself, therefore we cannot cover  a replacement central air unit." Really? Since when does homeowners insurance get to decide what is medically necessary for someone?

And I must apologize for not being around. My brain has been absolute mush because of this heat. I want to thank you for all the support you showed to author Deatri King-Bey when she was here. You all are the best.

I'll be back tomorrow with a holiday edition of the Insecure Writers Support Group and in the meantime, I'm going to try and stay cool.