Archive for April, 2018

Pulp Appeal: Ghostbusters

Posted: April 30, 2018 in Uncategorized

Don’t think there’s anything pulp about Ghostbusters? Let Cameron convince you otherwise.

Broadswords and Blasters

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When an ancient Lovecraftian-style evil rears its head in New York, who ya gonna call? The Ghostbusters, of course! What, you don’t consider Ghostbusters to reside under the pulp umbrella? I can only assume you skipped over nearly every piece of dialogue relayed by Harold Ramis or Dan Aykroyd. Ramis’ Egon Spengler and Aykroyd’s Ray Stantz are hardcore horror history nerds. They also believe in the paranormal, are swept up in the gathering manifestation of Zuul, the harbinger of Gozer–an ancient evil god once worshipped by the Sumerians–and fight back against the potential world-domination with hand-made nuclear-punk backpacks.

But before all that, they enlist their lecherous cynical compatriot Peter Venkman to be the face, hire on resident everyman Winston Zeddemore to do some of the grunt work, and call on the sarcastic and underpaid Janine Melnitz to do all the thankless but important secretarial work. After being called upon to…

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Broadswords and Blasters

Econoclash Review

Editor: J.D. Graves

Econcolash Review advertises itself as Quality Cheap Thrills, and much like Broadswords and Blasters, bills itself as a contemporary pulp journal publishing “publish only the best crime/sci-fi/noir/horror/humor/fantasy and everything else in between.” For a first issue debut, I can only gape in awe at the amount of talent pulled together into this anthology and will definitely be adding EconoClash to the list of small press magazines to keep a very close eye on.

You aren’t here to listen to me gush though, so let’s take a look at the stories included within.

Cover Art for Issue 1

“The Last Book” by Rick McQuiston

“In the Mouth of Madness” style metahorror piece. When a writer writes to entertain the eldritch horrors, what happens when he decides to quit the game? The meta-fiction aspect is a little heavy handed and not what I would have expected fresh…

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Celebrity Terrorist Sex Bomb
by Bob Freville
Journalstone

All right, so this is a bit of a first for me, seeing as how out of the blue, Bob Freville drops me a message asking me if I’d like to review his latest novella, CELEBRITY TERRORIST SEX BOMB. Now, just reading that title, has probably got you put on at least half a dozen government watch lists, so just imagine how many I’m on given that I’ve googled that phrase more than I would care to admit. 

You aren’t here to read about my trials and tribulations though, are you? Nah, you want to know if this quick hand grenade of a novella is worth your time. I’m not going to spoil you with a plot, but here’s the thing: with a work like this, it isn’t about the plot. It isn’t even about the characters, as much fun as a foul-mouthed Indian-American not-quite white dwarf starlet is, or her John Stamos-esque suicide bomber enabler. This is a rapid fire indictment that’s bound to offend at least everyone once.

Freville takes a machinegun approach to his blasting of culture, media obsession, how we treat celebrities (especially pretty young women), American militarism, extremism-in-the-name-of-Islam, sex, drugs, and pop music. Through his main character, Priya, he takes the brakes off a full scale indictment of the world as it is, while offering the occasional glimmer of how much better we all could be. It is foul-mouthed, irreverent, and you’ll never think of kegel exercises the same way again.

To be honest, some of the writing jumps around more than a tick on a hot cast iron stove, and you might find yourself wondering just why you decided to tap into what reads like a speedfreak mainlining CNN, MTV, and Lifetime all at once. But if you are reading something CELEBRITY TERRORIST SEX BOMB for the plot, well, I think we all know you made a misstep somewhere, don’t we?

Celebrity Terrorist Sex Bomb is currently available at Amazon… and other places too, if you think your search history can handle it.

Got a novel, novella, or magazine (hey, I don’t judge), you want me to check out? Hit me up on twitter or facebook (left side of your screen). My preference is for indie and small press, especially fantasy, science-fiction, horror, and bizarro lit.

Pulp Appeal: CIRSOVA #5

Posted: April 9, 2018 in Uncategorized

Today at Broadswords and Blasters, I talk about Cirsova, a contemporary magazine that focuses on heroic adventures. In particular, I cover their fifth issue, which was a concept edition highlighting the Eldritch Earth setting- a blend of Lovecraftian mythos and sword-and-planet adventure.

Broadswords and Blasters

CIRSOVA: Heroic Fantasy and Science Fiction Magazine recently released their seventh issue and in celebration they made issue five free on Amazon. I’d been meaning to pick up an issue anyway, and this acted as the perfect excuse to do so.

What’s interesting about this issue is that it acts as a formal introduction to a new shared world, Eldritch Earth. The concept is that during the Triassic period the Earth was colonized by the Great Ones. They were responsible for engineering various sub-species of humans to serve as slaves, but also imported other entities not native to Earth. There also the amphibious Yrrowaine who raid humans for mates, and the insectoid Slagborn and reptilian Dryth to contend with[1]. The idea is to have a setting where Lovecraft elements can be used in sword-and-planet and heroic fantasy stories. This isn’t exactly a new concept, and when reading through…

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Cameron talks BILL & TED’S EXCELLENT ADVENTURE, and how high stakes need to be personal.

Broadswords and Blasters

Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure Poster

“Fourscore and…seven minutes ago… we, your forefathers, were brought forth upon a most excellent adventure conceived by our new friends, Bill… and Ted.”

Two high school losers, Bill Preston (Alex Winter) and Ted Logan (Keanu Reeves), are on the verge of failing their high school history class when they are met by Rufus (George Carlin[1]), a mysterious man in a trenchcoat, who tells them the future is in jeopardy unless they pass their final report.

After talking with future versions of themselves, the two set off in a time machine disguised as a phone booth. They meet and convince/kidnap historical figures from different eras to bring back to San Dimas, California so they can do their final report and pass the class. Chaos and hilarity ensue as the historical figures cause chaos in 1980s southern California.

Along the way they become friends with Billy the Kid, Sigmund Freud…

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