My first Video Podcast!

Thank you to Spilling Ink for having me! Tons of fun and lots of laughs. GO WATCH IT HERE.

Author Spotlight: Brian G. Murray

Hello readers and misfits! We’re back with the oddest author interview segment on the internet! Today’s contestant is Brian G Murray…so come one down! You’re the next contestant on the Price is…wait, that’s not my show. Still, sit your ass down, sir. Let’s talk some books.

Forgotten Hero is currently out on the market, tell the folks ‘cross the internet what it’s about.

Forgotten Hero is an epic heroic fantasy novel with good versus evil.  Our heroes have to try and stop a Darklord from completing a ritual to resurrect his master and plunge the world back into darkness.  But, here’s the thing, one of the heroes is a character called Death and he used to be evil’s champion. As the reader, you need to try and work out who is Death and who’s side is on.  Swords, sorcery, battles, intrigue, mysteries, love, romance, heroes, villains and mayhem – what more do you want?

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Want to add this goodie to your reading list? Buy it RIGHT HERE.

 

The sequel I’ve heard is scheduled to come out June 17. That’s like a month before Vampire novel hits. You tryin’ to steal my thunder? Wanna take this out outside? Meet me outsie, how baw dat? Shudder Ugh, sorry, can’t believe I went there. Ok, seriously, tell us a little about the sequel and why the people need to get on book one so they can enjoy this little gem.

Book 2 – Dark Times follows on exactly where Forgotten Hero ends and continues the story.  I throw our heroes into even more perils, forcing them to travel to the belly of hell itself.  Will they stop the Dark One from returning?  He need Death to do what Death does best and that’s to kill, but will he?  I do not want to say much more and give spoilers, but this book continues to take the reader on an epic ride with so many twists and turns.

Stop strangling, me I will not give any spoilers – Arggghhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

 

Now, what people might not know is that you are quite the comic book collector. How many books do you have in the collection and what’s the one comic you’d follow Frodo across Mordor to try and get back? Yes, which book is “your precious?”

I have about 15,000 comics, loads of statutes and graphic novels.  My precious, well, it had been X-Men issue 1 from 1963, but I have that now.  But being a completest, I collect all variants for the Uncanny X-Men series, and the bane of my life and my new Precious is Uncanny X-Men 510 partial sketch cover – that bugger is selling for several thousand dollars per copy – kidney or comic!?!?!??!

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You know, that’s mighty pretty. I can see why he likes it.

 

Okay, let’s piss off the fanboys: Marvel or DC and why?

Marvel all the way – I was brought up on the X-Men and Spider-Man so will always be a Marvel fanboy.  Many of my friends at the time read DC, Batman and Superman, but I never got into them.  Oh, and confession time – I do read a little DC, some Batman occasionally.

 

I know you’re a huge X-men fan. Which of the movies made you fanboy and which could you have done without?

I was a fanboy long before the movies so I still hold the first X-Men movie in high regard. At the time we criticized the idea of Jackman being Wolverine – ‘He’s too fucking tall’, but give the actor kudos, he made the character his own – BUT he is STILL TOO FUCKING TALL!!!!!!

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“Say it to my fucking face, bub.” Hmm, appears Wolverine may not approve…

 

Jean Gray: Cyclops or Wolverine? Who’s her true love?

I am an old romantic, and though Wolverine is my favourite character, it has to be Jean Grey and Cyclops – I mean the covers to Uncanny X-Men 136 and 137 says it all. Oh and to be pedantic – it’s Grey not Gray – don’t shoot me – I am a geek!

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I don’t know. She seems to be digging on his Weapon-X right here…

 

Who’s your favorite comic book character of all time?

My favourite comic book hero is Wolverine, the best at what he does, and fuck Marvel for killing him off.

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One of the true greats has fallen…

 

Okay, who was more annoying in the beginning: Jubilee or Kitty Pryde?

I would say Jubilee as a reader I went through all the young girl getting powers with Kitty Pryde, so going through it a second time irked. 

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Annoying young girl getting powers A or B? YOU make the call.

 

What’s your all-time favorite comic book story arc? Which story arc can you just not stand and don’t understand why people love it?

Favourite all time comic book story arc, there are a few and some non-X-Men related ones, but if I have to pick one it’s – Days of Future Past – when I first read that story I was blown away.  Story I cannot stand has to be Batman – The Dark Knight Returns, I did not like it when I first read it and still do not like it – and yes I have tried reading it on numerous occasions but now given up. And before you ask, yes I do own the original first printings and the signed hardcover graphic novel – why . . . they are a must have. 

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Do you agree or disagree on these picks, people?

 

Do you think it hurts comic books that the reader knows people never stay dead? I mean, how many heroes of they killed off just to bring back later? Isn’t it almost a cheap ploy just to get sales?

Too right – if a character is dead then they are dead – but the issues is that Marvel for example has so many fucking continuities, it was getting hard to remember in which one the character is dead or alive.  At the moment Wolverine is dead, but for how long – opps he came back as Old Man Logan.  The bigger issue for me – oh prepare for the rant – is the number of re-starts, i.e. number 1’s and then the number of fucking variants they have for each issues.  Collecting modern comics, as a completest is getting more and more expensive. . . Breathe, I need to remember to breathe – bastards! I have stopped buying new issues because of this – but that’s a whole new level of me ranting!!

 

Okay, I’m going to say some comic book character names. You tell me what comes to mind immediately.

 

Cyclops?

Leader – true X-Men

Wolverine?

Best at what he does

Iron Man?

Pussy in a metal suit

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Batman?

Class act

Deadpool?

Give me patience

 

Last comic book question, how fucking awesome was the Deadpool movie?

I have to say I am NOT a fan of Deadpool – I am collecting all Mutant related comic book titles so Deadpool falls within that bracket, but the movie. . . fuck yeah, I have not laughed so much in years.  They finally found a role Ryan Reynolds can play without fucking it up – looking forward to the second movie.

 

Last question of the interview: if you could spend the day with Stan Lee, what would you talk to him about?

I would talk to him about the early days of Marvel, with the legends of the comic world, Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko, how they created the characters and how they developed the stories.  I would also like to know what character did not make the cut and why – he must have so many character that did not make it to print – that would be fascinating. 

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Want more Brian Murray? Find him below:

Website – http://www.briangmurray.com

Facebook – www.facebook.com/briangmurrayauthor

Amazon page – www.amazon.com/author/briangmurray

Publisher – http://www.burningwillowpressllc.com

 

Author Spotlight: Charles Lee Mullenix (The oddest interview segment on the internet continues)

In the hotseat today we have Charles Lee Mullenix. He’s another author at Burning Willow Press and quite a character. First, let’s start off with what you already have released “The Future is Built on Ashes.” This is a wild mash-up of Cyberpunk fantasy and dystopian and has just about every niche of those genres in it in some capacity. Please, tell the readers what they’re missing by not reading this gem.

They would be missing everything found in genre fiction. Literally…everything. That’s not like when hipsters say literally, and mean figuratively. I’m talking literally everything. This book was born out of my frustration from years of writing low-budget screenplays. My imagination was always being restricted by the limitations of money, time, locations, available actors, etc, and I couldn’t take it anymore. I thought if I switched to books I could write anything I wanted with no creative ceiling, and I went f@#king crazy. From dragons to cyborgs to ninjas to monsters to myths to Gods/Devils to Demon/Angels, and even put my spin on classic literary icons. I like to play a game where I have somebody try to think of something ‘cool’ from genre fiction, and no matter what they think of I have it within this book or the series of books to follow. It’s got it all. My main protagonist is an original ‘being’, and I created a couple new monsters/technologies totally unique to this franchise.

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But this book about EVERYTHING RIGHT HERE.

 

Not only are you a writer but I’ve heard you’re a Martial Artist. Considering S.L. Kerns is a body builder I’ve thought of having you two square off in a Burning Willow Mortal Kombat fight, but that’s for another day. What got you into the Martial Arts and what discipline or disciplines do you practice?

I’ve seen that dude with his shirt off, S.L. Kerns, so I’m tellin’ ya right now that I’m not fighting fair. I will have a knife on me. Haha I’m from Cincinnati, Ohio, and it’s historically a fighter’s city. Tons of world champs, or well-known pro fighters have come from here. We have streets named after boxers, and I think for whatever reason it’s just genetically in us. We’re a scrappy town, so I was always into fighting kids as early as elementary school. But, in first grade I saw Enter the Dragon with Bruce Lee, and it was over. I was hooked. I would watch movies, kickboxing fights, MMA stuff before it was even considered MMA, and anything I could find Martial Arts related and I would study it. Watch entire movies, and fights in slow motion. Break down the body mechanics until I could do it myself. We’re talkin’ second or third grade. My mom bought me some instructional videos, and by 15 I was training at a local Jeet Kune Do gym. That’s the Martial Art that Bruce Lee created which was meant to be a blend of styles not limited to just one. My Sifu had studied under the man who took over Jeet Kune Do from Bruce after his death. The school was filled with top notch talent, and pro fighters. I’ve trained with some well-known icons and fighters during my time. All in all I’ve studied 26 arts in the equal number of years, so there’s a ton of disciplines in there. I’ve just kinda made them all my own. Pick and choose what works for me, but try to learn as much as possible.

 

Okay, that being said…Bruce Lee vs Chuck Norris in real life with both in their prime. Who takes it and why?

I’ve gotta go with Bruce for obvious reasons, but I will give Chuck credit. Not only did Bruce handpick him for the final fight in Way of the Dragon, but he did so to spar with him. Norris was a beast back in the day.

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Bruce approves of this answer.

 

Were you a fan of Kung-Fu movies as a kid? I know I was. If so, what were your favorites?

Huge. Huge, huge fan. Enter the Dragon was epic. I grew up in the ‘80’s, and that was the height of the ninja phase of low-budget movies. Sho Kosugi is a God. All his movies. Enter the Ninja, Pray for Death, Ninja 3: Domination, and Black Eagle with VanDamme. Jean-Claude was a big deal too. Bloodsport. Kickboxer. Dude, there’s too many to name.

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Okay, we’ve covered that…but wait, kids. There’s more! You’re the lead vocalist of a metal band? You are quite literally getting cooler by the moment. What bands influenced your music and/or are just your favorite to listen to?

Thanks, man. You’re cool yourself. Best questions ever. Um, Guns n’ Roses in third grade changed my life. I’m adopted, and I’d tell people Axel Rose was my father. He’s not. I’ve been in mostly metal bands, so I’m inspired by a lot of wild, heavy sh@t that nobody has heard of. Every Time I Die, Dillinger Escape Plan, this Japanese Death Metal Goth band Dir En Grey is the most insane thing on this planet, but I also dig a lot of Hip Hop, Blues, Jazz, and Classical stuff.

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Did Charles’ mom take Axl to Paradise City? You decide…

 

So….greatest metal band ever: Black Sabbath….or Black Sabbath? Lol Okay, I’ll be fair,  you can pick any band you choose. (whispers: the correct answer is Black Sabbath)

If I ask Ozzy, or Dio version of Black Sabbath will I get slapped? Haha Love the Sabbath I do, but my favorite is actually Led Zeppelin.

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This debate still rages to this very day.

 

Hypothetical question: You can pick any two authors, alive or dead, and spend the day with them (one at a time) to pick their brains. Who do you pick and why?

Bret Easton Ellis. He inspired me a lot in my early twenties, and is still to this day probably my biggest influence. I’d love for him to show me the New York City that he knows while doing mountains of cocaine. Even though I’m sober now I’d come out of retirement for that. My second pick would be Arthur Conan Doyle. The Sherlock Holmes books were a huge deal for me as a kid. I’d just like to sip tea, and chat writing with him at an old library. He was English. He’d like tea, right?

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Mr. Ellis, you have been officially paged.

 

And if y’all thought we were done with Charles’ extra curricular activities, WRONG! You’re also a filmmaker about to start production on your first feature film. What’s the film name and what is it about? Who in the film industry has been an influence to you? Do you find film making and authoring to be related? Is the transition easy or is it hard? Sorry, that’s a lot of questions, so take your time answering.

I don’t want to give too much away about the movie, but like all my work it shares a unified universe with everything else. It is going to be a wild ride filled with sex, drugs, rock n’ roll, and Kung-Fu that ties into my books/comics. Quentin Tarantino was a big deal in my early teens, Japanese director Takashi Miike is a punk rock god who has directed like a hundred movies, Gareth Evans is a genius, and yes I think the mediums are related in ways. Maybe not for everyone, but it is all storytelling to me. One you just have to think of camera angles. I don’t think one is easier, or harder, but there is a lot more freedom when writing novels.

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Quentin can do my segment, as long as I don’t have to be “Mr. Pink.”

 

Last, but not least, you have a release coming out this summer I believe it is called “Block.” I’ve already been given a brief run down on it and it sounds intriguing. Tease the people with a little info to get them salivating for that pre-order date to get here.

“Block” follows a writer with writer’s block named Arthur Turk, direct nod to Arthur Conan Doyle, who is growing insane from frustration not being able to write anything of quality while navigating the world of a writer trying to get published. He’s strangely offered a dream job writing by a mysterious man named Mr. Mayflower, and from there he sees a supernatural world open before his eyes. One that was always there, and now he has become a part of it. Don’t wanna give too much away.

 

One last question, and I’m stealing this one (I’ll admit it). If Heaven’s real and God one day opens up the pearly gates for you, what do you want to hear him say?

Hey, everybody. Chill the f@#k out.

 

Thanks for your time, Charles. Looking forward to that new release!

Thank you, sir. This has been fantastic. Really fun. Thank you for your time, and I hope everybody checks out my work as well as all other Burning Willow Press authors. The entire crew over there from top to bottom are really great, talented people. Very passionate about writers/writing, and driven to help authors get their work to the masses.

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Mr. Charles Lee Mullenix. Tell me that’s not punk as fuck! 🙂

Would you or someone you know like to be featured on our blog?

Well, would you? There’s a couple ways to ask. You can either email me at: jaymichaelbookoutauthor@gmail.com (please put “Interview Request” in the subject line) or you can message me on facebook through my authors page which is located RIGHT HERE.

There will be a brief pre-interview question session so I can properly ask you relevant questions and help the readers get to know  you better. I am all about posting links to your work and what not, so that’s part of the Author Spotlight.

And you don’t have to be an author. Are you a publisher? An artist? Heck, even editors and beta readers welcome! Anything and everything to do with the business, I’d love to have you! So contact me if you are up to the oddest interview series on the internet!

 

Far Horizons Magazine

You like the Sci Fi?  You like FREE?  I did not stutter, FREE.  If you’re a writer, it’s a great place to get some exposure.  If you’re a reader, it’s a great way to get a Sci Fi fix.

 

LINK:  https://farhorizonsmagazine.wordpress.com/

 

April 2016 issue

A Few Tiny Things I’ve Figured Out Writing

Writing is a passion for many of us.  You’re probably here because you’re either a writer or a lover of reading (whether it be blogs or books or just whatever).  Many of you don’t know this, but I’ve only writing seriously for about fifteen months.  Sure, I spent most of my life doodling stories or writing poetry, but I didn’t try to get into the writing game as a real author until last year.  Here’s a few things I’ve learned.

1–Don’t get discouraged if you get a rejection letter.  We all get rejection letters and most places don’t give explanations, they just sent their regrets and send you on your way.  Your piece of writing may have been “this close” to being accepted, but maybe they didn’t like this one piece of the work, or you didn’t go into enough details with your environment, or maybe you rushed the horror instead of giving them the slow build they wanted.  There’s a thousand reasons someone could say no to you, but don’t let that stop you from writing.  Practice makes perfect, and when you get that first acceptance letter you’ll feel like you’re on top of the world.

2–Never, ever, ever use “vanity publishers.”  These are publishers that “If you’ll send us X amount of money we’ll make your dreams come true and publish your book!”  They are rip offs and they are frauds trying to get your money.  Look for Indy publishers, there are tons out there (and good ones at that), and try your luck with them.  A couple I’ve found that I would highly recommend are:

Burning Willow Press:  http://www.burningwillowpressllc.com/

The Dragon’s Rocketship Publishing:  http://tdrpublishing.com/

These are two that I personally use and they’re great.  They might serve the genre you write but there are others out there that do.  Look them up!  Do research!  Always be on the hunt for places to go!

3–For me, before jumping into my novel, I wanted to test my skills writing shorts.  The payout for a lot of places accepting these isn’t usually that great, BUT it’s a great way to cut your teeth.  Horror Tree provides a great list of places looking for ALL kinds of story submissions.  Their web address is the following:  http://horrortree.com/category/ongoing-submissions/

And if you’re into horror, the place I found my first home writing was Devolution Z magazine.  Their address is here:  http://devolutionz.com/

Most of all, don’t give up.  If writing is your passion, WRITE!  Don’t do it for the fame!  Don’t do it to be “the next Anne Rice,” do it because you love it.  I hope some of these links help  you out and that I might be seeing some of your work in print soon!

 

JMW2/Mikey