Monthly Archives: February 2018

The Love Child of Chandler and Lovecraft Has a Sibling

Casefile Arkham: Her Blood Runs Cold
Josh Finney, writer
Patrick McEvoy, artist
Kat Rocha, editor
paperback $19.99
ebook $7.99

I really liked the first volume of Casefile Arkham. I like this second volume even better. But before I get into the reasons why, I need to remember my manners and thank Kat Rocha for sending me the review copy. I had intended to post this review early last week, but last week sucked rocks.  And not just because of things you saw on the news.

But I digress. Let’s focus on the story at hand. Continue reading

The 2018 Longlist for the Gemmell Awards is Live

Adventures Fantastic would like to congratulate all the nominees.  The official Press Release follows:


Longlist Voting Opens for the David Gemmell Awards for Fantasy 2018

The David Gemmell Awards for Fantasy enters its tenth year in 2018, reaching a notable anniversary and once again honouring and celebrating the very finest in epic fantasy. Named after one of the most popular and acclaimed writers in the field, awards will be presented in the categories of best fantasy novel, best fantasy debut and best fantasy cover art.

The awards are decided entirely by public vote, and the longlists are now open for the public to have their say on what were the leading fantasy titles of the last year. In making your voice heard, you’ll give titles the chance to reach the shortlist and have the opportunity to claim one of these prestigious prizes, with the ceremony taking place at the Edge-Lit 7 event at QUAD, Derby on the 14th July.

Voting for the longlist will be open until the 30th March, with the shortlisted titles announced on the 20th April in preparation for the final vote on who will win the Legend Award, the Morningstar Award and the Ravenheart Award.

This year’s longlist features a host of previous Gemmell Awards winners, as well an exciting array of new talent, with the Morningstar longlist for best fantasy debut being one of the longest in the history of the awards.

Awards Chair Stan Nicholls said: “How fitting that the awards’ tenth anniversary should be graced with three longlists containing such a wealth of literary and creative talent. We’re particularly pleased to have so many nominations in the Morningstar category which, given David Gemmell’s support for new voices, we’re sure he’d be delighted about.”

For more information, or to cast your vote for each of the three categories of the Gemmell Awards, visit


The David Gemmell Awards For Fantasy were launched in 2009, in tribute to bestselling fantasy author David Gemmell, who passed away in 2006, and to honour the best fiction and artwork in the heroic fantasy field. Recipients of the awards include authors Andrzei Sapkowski, Brandon Sanderson, Patrick Rothfuss, Brent Weeks, John Gwynne, Mark Lawrence, Brian McClellan and Peter Newman; and artists including Didier Graffet, Raymond Swanland, Jason Chan and Sam Green. The awards’ website page can be found at and its Facebook page at

Edge-Lit is Derby’s annual fantasy, horror and science-fiction event taking place in July each year. In 2018 it runs for the seventh time and will once again draw together an array of writing talent for a day of panels, workshops, book launches and much more. For more information, visit

Farewell, Bill Crider

Bill Crider, World Fantasy Convention 2017

I woke up this morning to the news that Bill Crider passed away yesterday. He was a true gentlemen in the writing community.  Although most of his work was in the mystery and crime genres with a few forays into westerns, he wrote some short fiction that contained fantastic elements, such as his Sidewise Award winning story “It Doesn’t Matter Anymore”. James Reasoner told me after the story won the award that Bill had written it at the last minute as a replacement for someone who had to drop out of the project. I considered it an honor to be included in that anthology with him.

One story of Bill’s I read years ago in an anthology (the name of both the story and the anthology escape me) concerned a town in the old west that was having troubles with a werewolf. And the only person in the area with silver bullets was a masked man and his faithful Indian companion…

Bill had been fighting cancer since about July of 2016. Bill had lost his wife Judy to cancer a few years prior to that. They have been reunited.

It was his announcement of the diagnosis that made me decide to attend Armadillocon that year.  I hadn’t seen many of my friends since moving to the Llano Flatto part of the state. It was the first time in over half a decade I had seen some of those folks, and it made me realize how much I missed them. Continue reading

Question About Scrivener

So tonight I was fiddling around with Scrivener trying to figure out how to get it to automatically do a couple of formatting things.  I’d had to do them manually before, but I’ve got some stories I want to submit over the next few days. I wanted to know what I was misunderstanding.

I solved the problems I was trying to figure out, but then I noticed something odd.  The word count on Scrivener was 18.1k.  When I compiled it into an RTF docuement, it was 12.8k.  That’s a pretty big difference. I compared the words in the opening section, and the RTF count was two words less than the Scrivener count.

Anyone have any idea what’s going on here? I’m inclined to trust the Scrivener count because when each section’s word count when tallied adds up to the total.  And the words in each section are only the words of the story.

I want to send this out, but not with such a discrepancy in the word counts.

Frank Frazetta at 90

Frank Frazetta would have turned 90 today (February 9) if he were still alive.

It’s hard to know what to write for this post. Frazetta’s stature in the fields of fantasy art and comics cannot be overstated. His work has graced the covers of some of the most fundamental titles in the canon. (I’ll probably get hate mail for even suggesting there’s such a thing as a canon.)

It was Frazetta’s covers to the Lancer (later the Ace) paperback reprints of Robert E. Howard’s Conan stories that helped to put that character on the map.

And then there were the Burrough’s covers. And Karl Edward Wagner’s Kane. And…You get the idea.

Frazetta casts a long shadow, and that’s a good thing. He brought a vitality to fantasy art that  had been lacking. I was fortunate to see some of his originals on exhibit a couple of years ago.

It’s been less than a decade since we lost him. He’s still missed. Raise a glass tonight in his honor.

Kuttner’s Death, Moore’s Silence

Henry Kuttner and C. L. Moore

Deuce Richardson pointed out to me in an email that today is the 60th anniversary of Henry Kuttner’s death. Since I don’t think I’ll be able to finish what I had intended to review today, this is a good topic to talk about.  (Thanks, Deuce.)

I’ve done a few posts on the anniversary of a person’s death  before, but I prefer to acknowledge birthdays. However, a 60th anniversary is a milestone. So if you’ll indulge me, I’d like to share a few somewhat random thoughts.

Kuttner had been teaching a course on writing at USC when he died, and Moore took over. I’m not sure how long she continued teaching, if it was only to finish out the semester or if she taught beyond that semester.

She remarried in 1963. Her husband Thomas Reggie didn’t want her writing anymore. At least that’s the legend, and I’m inclined to believe it. C. L. Moore’s voice fell silent. She never wrote fiction again.

Her husband supposedly (according to Wikipedia) asked the Science Fiction Writers of America not to honor her with a Grand Master Award because by that time Catherine was suffering from Alzheimer’s by then. Her husband thought the ceremony would be too stressful and confusing.

Let that sink in for a moment. This had to have been sometime in the early to mid-1980s. Moore died in 1987.* Andre Norton was the Grand Master for 1984. There wouldn’t be another woman to receive the honor until Ursula K. LeGuin in 2003, nearly 20 years later. I don’t know why Moore couldn’t have been presented with the award and it simply be announced that she was unable to attend for unspecified health reasons.  Essentially, her husband denied her recognition that was well deserved.** Continue reading