Craig Shaw Gardner: Dangerously Creative Writer of Fantasy, Horror and Science Fiction

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International Superstar!

Wednesday, May 17, 2006I've just gotten my author copies of the very first Ebenezum novel, A MALADY OF MAGICKS, in its Japanese translation! It's a cute book, with a red cover sporting a cartoon wizard and the tile of the book in English. The rest of it, except for a character list in English at the very front, is in Japanese, which, I alas, cannot read. But it looks cool as all heck.

Ebenezum's quite the world traveller. Besides being a paperback bestseller in England, old Eb has seen editions in Russia, Germany, the Czech Republic and Poland. A lot of my other books have seen print in these countries, too (along with one sale each, I think, to Italy and France) but in most of the cases, the Eb books have led the way. And, of course, my novelizations have been translated all over the place (BATMAN was translated just about everywhere!)

It will be interesting to see if the Japanese public takes to my sneezing wizard. (The publisher has bought the first three out of six.) I think the Cineverse books could do well in Japan, too, what with the Japanese fascination with American and European film culture. But these things, alas, are beyond my control...

In the meantime, tho, I've got a cool new book written by me that I can't read at all. And I am properly thankful.

Arigato, Ebenezum-san!

Posted by Craig Shaw Gardner at 10:31 AM | 3 comments  

Random gorillas

Sunday, May 14, 2006In Boston, it rains.

We've had something like twelve inches in the last twenty-four hours. What can a poor boy do, 'cept for watch TV and post on his blog?

Sunday TV is a strange creature, filled with wandering infomercials everywhere you turn. I have long ago decided that the best way to watch informercials is with the sound on mute. That way, you can really study the pitchman/woman as he/she gesticulates wildly about the product which will SURELY SOLVE ALL YOUR PROBLEMS if only you would send them those few easy payments! (These pitch people are, of course, always accompanied by one or more serious listeners, who ask the occasional question, but whose main function is to nod gravely at whatever the main dude or dudette is spouting.) With no sound, it's much easier to see the slightly crazed look in the pitchperson's eyes, that look that hides just behind those oh-so-sincere expressions.

When I was growing up, of course, weekend TV was a different beast. Afternoon TV was filled with old movies with names like HERCULES PLAYHOUSE, KUNG-FU THEATER, CHILLER THEATER and (my personal fave) SWASHBUCKLER THEATER. You knew just what you were getting in these flicks, both good and bad (And the mix of film packages were incredible, with -- especially in the Swashbucklers -- classic films mixed in with 50s Arabian Nights Potboilers.)

These films have now largely migrated to cable and DVD. Good old Comcast (home of the "Let's raise the cable bills again this month and see if anyone notices") now shows a bunch of "free" on-demand films, including such great stuff (at this moment) as MOTHRA and FISTFUL OF DYNAMITE (aka DUCK, YOU SUCKER.) But Comcast also shows other wacky stuff for "free". I've been catching up on episodes of SAMURAI CHAMPLOO and PARANOIA AGENT. But the best (?) comes from their "Something Weird" channel, which mostly seems to show School Scare Films and 1950s Strip Tease films. This latter category is the sort of thing that would probably have gotten you arrested 50 years ago, but the flicks now seem incredibly innocent. I will admit to checking out these shorts on occasion, and today, I wandered over and found a title called "The Gorilla and the Maiden!"

Wow. Not only strippers, but gorillas? Or, more likely, guys in gorilla suits? I was hooked!

And yes, there was a guy in a gorilla suit -- one of the worst I have ever seen (There's a worse suit in NIGHT OF THE BLOODY APES, but that's another blog.) And the bit -- the middle dance in a set of three -- besides being 99% tease with very little payoff -- was kind of boring. And yet I couldn't pull my eyes away from it. This is the strange power gorilla suits hold over me. I'll watch anything with a gorilla suit. KONGA? Not very good. THE MIGHTY PEKING MAN? Even worse! But I watch every minute. I won't actually watch stuff with the real thing (actual, living, breathing gorillas) in the film, like GORILLAS IN THE MIST. But if they would recast that flick with guys in ill-fitting suits, I'd be there in an instant!

I once gave a guest of honor speech at a Science Fiction Convention wearing a gorilla suit, What does this say about me? Maybe we shouldn't go there.

The mind wanders as I blog. I look out the window, and see nothing but rain.

Posted by Craig Shaw Gardner at 3:28 PM | 0 comments  

Nothing to see here

Tuesday, May 09, 2006Just keep moving along.

(Blogger wouldn't let me on, and then, suddenly, did! The mysteries of the internet, huh?)

A new, real post soon, I promise!

Posted by Craig Shaw Gardner at 3:47 PM | 0 comments