Tag: Science Fiction (page 1 of 16)

Dead Letters!

DeadLetters

An Anthology of the Undelivered, The Missing, The Returned…

An Atomic Moo Book Review

The Dead Letter office is a real thing. According to Wikipedia (never a real source), the dead letter office is “is a facility within a postal system where un-deliverable mail is dealt with”. A lot of countries have dead letter offices, but I think the US is the only one to actually use the name. According to 99percentinvisible.com – over “90,000,000 items were marked undeliverable-as-addressed (UAA) and entered the dead letter and parcel system.” This is all really cool, and (of course) it is also the prefect premise for dozens of stories the likes of which can be found in a new anthology from Titan Books! See how I brought that around. I think I’m good at this…

Anyways… Now out through Titan Books is a fantastic new collection of stories centered around the (mostly) sinister idea of unwanted mail! Okay… on the surface you wouldn’t think that was such a scary idea, but think about it: The wrong addressed letter, the misplaced package, that message that just disappeared, represent an idea of mystery. Opening a strangers mail is like a starting off point to the unknown! A possible leap into an unknown mystery! The shadowy secrets of your apartments former resident’s credit history suddenly laid bare! It’s possibly a goddamn ticket to the Twilight Zone, people!

Exploring the vast ocean possibly within 90 + million undelivered messages are eighteen writers (list below) who contribute their literary talents to this idea. Now I don’t want to give the idea that Dead Letters is all spooky horror stuff. The variety of stories cover everything from horror to mystery to the kind of mundane. One of my favorite stories in the book is actually one of the first stories and deals with a mysterious green envelope. Not necessarily an evil green letter (could be), but definitely a very bizarre green letter. Then other stories take you through painful personal histories or to mythical places. It’s this variety of ideas all based on the one premise that makes this book a fun read. There’s even an H.P. Lovecraft-esque story by Andrew Lane that reads incredibly spooky, and I think would have made Lovecraft proud. Overall, I really dug this book. Though, I thought it was weird every person in the story had a moral dilemma about opening a piece of lost mail (really? Not one guy/gal was like, “free shit!”), all of the stories take an unexpected journey and some of them are even kind of touching. I think this would be a much better book to read in the fall, closer to Halloween, but if you’re looking for an overall eerie vibe in your summer reading, then The Dead Letters would be a great place to start!

Dead Letters is available now in all major book stores, or you can get your copy online at Titanbooks.com. I posted the official synopsis below along with a complete list of contributing authors.

The Dead Letters Office: the final repository of the undelivered. Love missives unread, gifts unreceived, lost in postal limbo. Dead Letters: An Anthology features new stories from the masters of horror, fantasy and speculative fiction, each inspired by an inhabitant of the Dead Letters Office, including tales from Joanne Harris, China Miéville & Maria Dahvana Headley, Adam LG Nevill and Michael Marshall Smith.

Conrad Williams , Joanne Harris , Michael Marshall Smith , China Miéville , Nicholas Royle , Ramsey Campbell , Pat Cadigan , Nina Allan , Angela Slatter , Alison Moore , Kirsten Kaschock , Maria Dahvana Headley , Steven Hall , Lisa Tuttle , Muriel Gray , Claire Dean , Christopher Fowler , Adam LG Nevill , Andrew Lane

The Atomic Moocast #118!

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The Doubleclicks Interview!

The Doubleclicks people! The Doubleclicks were on our show! This show! Finally! And I think we impressed them. Well, probably not, but the geek folk-duo singing sisters (Angela and Aubrey Webber)banana-768x503 are on this latest episode of the Atomic Moocast, and we’re now better people for it. The ladies (I had to learn that one) are currently on a summer tour and early last June we recorded an interview with them to discuss the tour, new songs, being creative, and how not to kill your sibling. Turns out they are really good at that. Anyways, it was extremely cool of them to be on our sputtering little podcast and we’re now even bigger fans of theirs!

Also, we’re really sick on this podcast. One of the reasons (usually its just my laziness) this podcast is later than normal is that both Jason and I got taken down by some alien cold/flu combo. It kicked the hell out of us, but we persevered and produced the podcast all the same. Still, please excuse all the coughs and snorts at the intro portion of the show.

So here we go folks! This Moocast is a fresh steaming pile of podcasting excellence just ready to be poured down your ear holes! Now would be the time to go grab a fizzy soda, some salty snacks, and a comfy chair. Then just settle in and let us dominate your brain for a little less than an hour. We’ll try not to muss it up too much…

Enjoy!

Enjoy!

Free music used by the Atomic Moo cast is royalty free and was created and composed by Kevin MacLeod and can be found at Incompetech.com. Please support this site!

Songs used:

  • Funk Game Loop
  • As I Figure
  • Who Likes to Party
  • Fast Talkin

Show Notes and Links

2016 Massive Summer Tour

Vote for PRESIDENT SNAKES

The Art & Making of Independence Day Resurgence!

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An Atomic Moo Book Review!

Way back in 1996, I was a handsome 19 year-old with a bright future. True, I would soon squander that future on many hours playing video games, and then going to school for a journalism degree, but in July of 1996 my friends and I had just gotten back from our 2nd SDCC and that night we jumped into line to see this fantastic new movie called Independence day! Which, despite a few cinematic foibles, was really fun! Big flying saucers come to Earth and blow everything up and it’s up to Brundle-fly, the Fresh Prince, and Lone Star to save our world! Epic. Yeah, ID4 has taken some criticism over the years, but since then we’ve seen giant piles of shit like Force Awakens, so… hindsight, right?

Anyways, the point is: ID4 was fun, and one of the best things about The Art & Making of Independence Day: Resurgence was remembering the good times of seeing giant alien frisbees laser the shit out of all our major cities.04_independence_day_bluray True, I have not yet seen the new movie. Not because of any negative reviews or anything like that. It’s just that I’m very broke right now, and getting over a nasty flu. I didn’t want to go to the movies, throw up, and have people thinking I was critiquing the movie. However, I can totally throw up from home, and write a critique on the official companion. Groovy.

Continue reading

The Art of Tony Washington

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Illustrator,Concept Artist, Music Producer

Okay El Moochadores, I’ve got another Moocast finished, and while Jason gives it a proof listen I thought I’d post about some more really cool stuff we came across at Power Con 2016.

Check out the incredible talent of Tony Washington. According to his bio, Washington is a San Diego (good choice) based artist, and music producer, who has worked for Image Comics, DC’s Wildstorm, and Sony PS3! He’s produced art for such brands as Warcraft,7b328018668925.562cd54b0afca and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles! I love Warcraft and Ninja Turtles. Tony Washington also produces music for his site Station Stories! I listened to a few of the sample tracks – which have this great electronica vibe to them. It’s actually a lot like the music I listen to when sketching or doing digital art. Washington is also involved in a lot of his own creator driven projects like a comic book called Dark Prophet. Which you can also preview issue #1 for free on his website (link above)! Dammit, this dude is making me lazy. Okay, I am lazy, but still…

I’ve posted a few samples of Washington’s art work below, but hit the links above to see way more and go visit Station Stories to hear some cool beats.

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Dakota Kid Creations

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The Art of Lamont Hunt

Surrounding our booth at Power-Con 2016 were a lot of fantastic artist, and (hopefully) I’ll get around to posting about their stuff over the next couple of weeks. One artist that really stood out though was Lamont Hunt of Dakota Kid Creations. Hunt, a professional character designers, had a bunch of great prints featuring a fun style. I’m not totally sure how he is illustrating (kind of looks like markers or water color) but the results are amazing. I love cartooning, and seeing his work was really inspiring.

Check out a few sample images below, but you can see way (WAY) more on his facebook page!

Enjoy!

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MOMOCON 2016!

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Cosplay in 4K from Beat Down Boogie!

Beat Down Boogie just released a new video showing off all the great cosplay at MomoCon 2016. Like always, cool costumes, cute girls, and a groovy beat. Check out way more of their projects at Distractotron and the Beat Down Boogie official site.

Dig it.

New(er) MOTU Art

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Power-Con 2016 Preview!

Okay El Moochadores, we’re putting the finishing touches on some new art that we’ll be taking to Power-Con this coming weekend. Check out these vector busts by Chudd (aka: Jason Murray). We’ll be selling this art along with the other MOTU prints I blogged about a few days ago. I’ll also post these prints to the Murray Brothers Creative shop, so that you can purchase them online. We’ll also have some unique button art at the con, but we’re just now starting to put that together, so… no preview yet. Anyways, if you happen be a fan of 80’s pop-culture, and in So. Cal this weekend, swing by Torrance and check out the con! It’s shaping up to be a really cool event!

Cheers!

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E-11 BLASTER RIFLE AD 8 1/2″ X 11″ PRINT

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New Print Available on Murray Brothers Creative!

Okay El Moochadores, look up and check out the latest addition to the Murray Brothers Creative online store!

The E-11 Blaster Rifle Ad 8 1/2″ X 11″ is a high quality print that pairs the famous weapon of the Imperial Army with an 1950’s magazine ad. One of our favorite things to create are mock ads for products from popular fiction. Check out our Blastech E-11 Blaster Rifle ad 8 1/2″ x 11″ print. The print was illustrated and designed by Jason R. Murray, and will look awesome next on the wall next to your vintage Star Wars action figure collection!

The print will normally sell for $12.00 online, but I’m posting it for only $8.00 until July 1st, 2016! That’s an awesome deal for a great looking piece of wall art! So, click the link above to get one for yourself or share this with your Star Wars love’n facebook buddies!

The Angel of Highgate

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An Atomic Moo Book Review of Vaughn Entwistle’s New Novel

This summer I turn 40. Four decades. Most of them kind of awful. Now that I’m about to hit the big Four Zero all I think about is death. Well, my death. I can’t help it! I’m probably more or less half way there and that scares the hell out of me! Hell, most cavemen only lived into their thirties! I’m a very old caveman, and there’s so much I haven’t done! I’ve only hit on about twenty strippers in my life. Do you know how many strippers are out there!? And, Thai food! I’ve never ate it! What if it’s awesome!? Oh, and I’ve never eaten Thai food off a stripper! Ye Gods, there so much I haven’t done! I’m not ready to die!!! So, picking up a novel that has a fascination with death, dying, and the dead, probably wasn’t smart.

Anyways, my own mortality aside: Titan Books recently published a thrilling new novel from Vaughn Entwistle (cool last name) that is very much on the macabre side of 19th century London. The Angel of Highgate begins with Lord Geoffrey Thraxton, a sort of outlandish rogue, who’s self indulgent behavior has given him a bad reputation in elite English society. Thraxton is obsessed with death, and one evening while hanging around a cemetery he sees a specter that changes his life! Here’s the official synopsis:

After surviving a pistol duel, Thraxton boasts his contempt for death and insults the attending physician. It is a mistake he will regret, for Silas Garretteis a deranged sociopath and chloroform-addict whose mind was broken on the battlefields of Crimea. When Thraxton falls in love with a mysterious woman who haunts Highgate Cemetery by night, he unwittingly provides the murderous doctor with the perfect means to punish a man with no fear of death.

The Angel of Highgate did an excellent job of recreating 19th century macabre. This book is as thrilling as any horror fiction you could get from Poe or Shelly two centuries ago. Lord Thraxton is enough of a young, egocentric, cad to be both enjoyable and hated at the same time. I also really enjoyed the villains in this story. Good bad guys are hard to come by, and Entwistle did a masterful job of writing the antagonists for this novel. Doctor Garrette, and Morecai Fowler, are a great combination of ruthless and sinister for a more adult oriented story. If I had to give a criticism of this book it would be that I wish it had kept up with the “spookiness” that was present in the first half of the novel. Though the story remained dark and eerie, it became much more of an adventure story and pulled away from the supernatural tone that was set up by moments like the seance in chapter twelve. That didn’t ruin the book for me, I was just hoping for a bit more of a ghost story after the seance, is all.

So, if you’re young and you’ve got a whole life a head of you, yeah, pick this novel up and give it a read. Now you’ll have to excuse me while I go find a happy stripper that’ll let me slurp Pad Thai off her naked body. I might not get to do it tomorrow!!!

The Angel of Highgate is for sale in all major bookstores, or you can get your copy online from Titan Books!

Cheers!

Murray Brothers Creative!

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Check out our new portfolio site for cool stuff at great prices!

As many of you already know, Jason and I like creating art. One of the main reasons we started Atomic Moo was a chance to create our own work, and learn from other creatives. So, that’s why we have the Moocast (with all its great interviews), and the beginnings of a comic book. It has been our goal to live a life where we are creating the art we enjoy and being successful creators at the same time. I’m not sorry when I say, day jobs suck. Working for other people, and doing something you don’t enjoy, sucks. So all of this (the podcast, blog, reviews, comic book) is us trying to learn how to live a different life away from the suck that is normal life. And I think we are one tiny step closer in that direction. atomicmoo_5x7_by_jrmurray76-d9z31nf (1)

The other day I finished the basic set up for our online portfolio and store: Murray Brothers Creative! This is where we will be selling all of our very cool prints, fan art, and what ever else we can make. I actually take a bit of pride in this, not just because I know dick all about websites, and even using Square Space was kind of a task, but because we’re actually putting our selves out there and… doing something! I’m not saying we’re great artist. We’re no, (Well, I’m actually pretty proud of Jason and his style of art), but we’re trying to get out of our shells and do more than we thought we could, and hopefully we can make something a lot of people will enjoy at the same time.

So, I’ve blathered enough, but the website is online. It’s at its most basic form. Jason is in the process of creating a lot of the design elements that will really make it awesome, but for right now it works as a portfolio and store. I’ve only put on a few test pieces to start with (about six of our 8 1/2″ x 11″ prints. Each selling for $12.00), but I’ll be adding more in time and announcing hit here. Also, Murray Brothers Creative has a blog, where I’ll be posting about convention appearances, sales, and new art as well. Check out a small sample below, but hit the Murray Bros. link above to see the whole thing.

Fugg’n Groovy.

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