As We Wait, A Thank You

The nominations for the 2017 Dragon Awards closed about an hour ago. Over the next 7-10 days the nominations will be tabulated and the finalists in each category will be announced and the final vote to determine the ultimate winners will get underway.

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The Dragon Award nominations for 2017 have closed. The finalists will be announced on August 2nd. Winners will be announced on September 2nd at Dragon Con in Atlanta, GA

Escaping Infinity was nominated by several people that I know of for Best Sci-Fi Novel. I will now wait to see if it garnered enough nominations to make it to the final vote. I know I really hope it does and will be happy with making the finals if it fails to win the award on September 2nd.

But, at this point and time, before the final results are tallied and released. I wanted to thank everyone who nominated my novel as well as everyone who has read it and left reviews or sent my such wonderful comments about it.

The idea for it first came to me in 1996 and it took the better part of two decades to work it out and shape it into the final form it was released as in January of this year. When I first started it I had no idea what would become of it and no hint of the journey it would take me on.

Thank you again, for your nominations and for accompanying me along the way.

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What’s The Hold Up George?

So apparently, it’s a thing now and I want to jump on board the bandwagon too. So here goes.

Jump on the band wagon

It has been several years since George R.R. Martin has released a new book, 2012 to be exact. Some authors are listing all the books they’ve written and released since 2012. In my case, all you have to do is look at my Books page and you’ve got my list.

For the record, since 2012 I have released six standalone novels, two novelettes and two short stories that were part of Sherlock Holmes anthologies. This year I have written two more anthology-bound short stories, am almost finished with a third and hope to release two new novels before the end of the year.

We call it the #PulpRev – short for Pulp Revolution. Back in the golden age of sci-fi/fantasy authors like Doyle, Burroughs and Wells cranked out a steady flow of entertaining material for their readers to eagerly consume. Nowadays, it seems like the bigger houses like to torment their readers with a slow drip of stories that preach to the reader rather than entertain.

So those of us that identify with the #PulpRev make a serious effort to get entertaining stories of great quality out as fast as our fingers can type. You’ll also note – unlike a certain house with certain authors – we don’t charge print edition prices for e-book editions of our books. We want to entertain you, not bankrupt you.

So when you see the hashtag #PulpRev attached to the name of such great authors like Declan FinnJon Del ArrozLarry CorreiaDawn Witzkesome dude with a hard-to-pronounce Italian last name and a host of many, many others I haven’t listed here but are just as worthy, you know you’ve got a good story at your fingertips.

Award Season Off To A Nice Start

So this arrived in my inbox yesterday and, of course, I was on the road traveling and just now back home so I can post the news here.

second_placeThe East Texas Writers Guild has awarded Escaping Infinity its Second Place Ribbon in the Guild’s 2017 Blue Ribbon Book Cover Contest during its annual gathering on Saturday.

The contest was judged by artists from Dallas, Texas and the winners were announced on July 15th.

It is the first of four awards Escaping Infinity is in the running for over the next two months. As you can imagine, while first place would have been wonderful, I am delighted that the cover earned the recognition that it did. I want to thank the Guild for the contest as well as the judges for the award. I’ll just have to see about doing a little better next year, of course. And I plan to have more than one eligible book to make a run and the top ribbon in 2018.

The next date on my awards calendar is July 24th, the day the 2017 Dragon Awards nominations close. Shortly after the finalists will be announced with the winners set to be announced on September 2nd. I’m hoping to see Escaping Infinity among the finalists for Best Sci-Fi Novel (there’s still time to enter your nominations.)

On August 15th, the New Apple Self-Published Summer E-Book Awards will announce their winners and on September 1st the Readers Favorite Awards will announce their winners. Escaping Infinity is in the running for both of these awards as well.

Only Regret

I’m occasionally asked about my run as a sports writer – starting in 1984 as a freelancer until that day in 2010 when I decided I’d done all I could do – and if I have any regrets. Usually, the questioner is asking more along the lines of not being a beat writer for a major sports team for a big city publication.

HB_002I did make it as far as the San Francisco Examiner and was the sole reporter covering the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl and got to interview two future NFL stars in Luke Kuechly and Colin Kaepernick. And I did get to cover Arizona Cardinals games back in the early 1990s for the Gallup Independent. But as far as being a full-time beat writer that never happened.

But to be perfectly honest, I had more fun covering the high school and small college teams on a regular basis. There was more of a joy of playing the game feel to those games than I ever got from the times I covered a major game. So as a writer I’d have to say I look back at my career with perfect contentment and not a single regret. Sure, if the Dallas Morning News had come calling to be the beat writer for the Dallas Cowboys I’d have taken the job so fast I’d have left a sonic boom behind in my wake. But they didn’t and I really never expected they would so there is that.

AF_WYO_003But there is one area of my career that there is one little regret lingering and it comes from the time I started pulling double-duty as both a writer and a photographer. I’ve shot Div I college football (the aforementioned Hunger Bowl in San Francisco and the Air Force Academy Falcons – remind me to tell you the story about the Falcon mistaking me for the target he was supposed to grab at one game.), NFL games in Arizona, San Francisco and Oakland, an NBA game at The Forum between the Houston Rockets and the Los Angeles Lakers, the California League baseball championship, the 2007 U.S. Women’s Hockey Championships and the AT&T tournament at Pebble Beach.

 

Rockets_Lakers_1993_002But there are two venues I never got a chance to shoot. The Masters at Augusta National and a Cowboys game at the now-demolished Texas Stadium. It’s highly unlikely I’ll get a shot at shooting on the hallowed grounds of Augusta, ever, and Texas Stadium is now a memory.

So there you are. The two boxes in my career I never got to check off. Strangely enough, it makes me appreciate all the boxes I did manage to check off all that much more.

And yes. All of the photos you see above were taken by me during my career. One of these days I’ll make a page of some of my best sports photos to share with you.

 

 

Movie Calendar

It occurred to me after watching/surviving yesterday’s movie trifecta that there’s quite a few movies coming up in the second half of 2017 that are definitely on my schedule.

In July there’s War For The Planet Of The Apes. I haven’t been a fan of the reboot but the wife is and so I’m going too. My main issue with the films, dating back to the original Charlton Heston movie is that the human race is a hell of a lot more savage than any other species when the chips are down. There’s no way we’d ever allow the situation to deteriorate to where the apes would become the dominate species.

Then there’s The Dark Tower, the adaptation of Stephen King’s series. I’m still not sure how they plan to address, if at all, the casting of Idris Elba as The Gunslinger in relation to one of the other major characters, Susanna. Her blatant hatred of white people – which she carried over in the books to the very white Gunslinger of King’s books – and how her character changed as the books progress was one of the better minor plot lines in the series. Still, Elba and Matthew McConaghey are great actors and it should be a film worth seeing.

Blade Runner: 2049 will be a must see, I’m a huge fan pf Phillip K. Dick, and it looks like this film is a little more in line with Dick’s original vision.

Normally, I don’t go see remakes in the theater but the latest version of Murder On The Orient Express – especially with the cast in this one – and it being directed by Kenneth Branaugh is enough reason to bend the rule in this case. The man can make a film.

Thor: Ragnorak is an automatic. But I’m passing on Spiderman and Antman. Something about those two films really bugs me. (Thank you, I’ll be here all week.)

I’m still not sure if I will go see Star Wars: The Last Jedi in the theater or wait for the DVD release. SW7 left such a foul taste in my mouth that I’m leery of the next film. However, Rogue One did a lot to heal the wounds and I may go ahead and go, especially with Luke finally getting some screen time. Note to JJ Abrams: Shame on you for not getting Luke, Leia and Han together on screen for one last scene. Shame!!!

So that’s the schedule. I’ll try to review as many as I can. What are you looking forward to watching this year? Let me know in the comments below.

 

 

 

Cinematic Trifecta Saturday

So what do two people with no kids at home any longer do with a Saturday off?

We go spend eight hours at the movie theater, that’s what we do. So the wife and I trundled off to what has become our favorite theater ever – assigned seats, reclining chairs you can almost sleep in, etc, etc. – and we decided to do something we’ve never attempted before – see three movies in one go.

Pirates 5

We started our journey with Pirates of the Carribean – Dead Men Tell No Tales. It was nice to see them get back to what made the franchise work in the original trilogy. The fourth installment should have been sunk at sea before it was ever filmed. The fifth movie brings back all the elements that made the first film an enjoyable watch.

Avoiding spoilers is the rule around here, but one thing I will ask: Given what happens to a certain stepdad in Guardians of the Galaxy 2, what’s with the sudden run of bumping the dads off in movies? Granted the dads sacrificed themselves for good reason, but it is almost like Hollywood has declared war on us.

The_Mummy_(2017)We then wandered all the way across the building to get to The Mummy. It was okay, has some promise and certainly set the stage for the planned Dark Universe.

I’m not sure how Tom Cruise’s character works into the classic Dracula, Invisible Man, Mummy, Wolfman, et al universe. But we’ll see I suppose. But I do hope we’ll see more of Russell Crowe across all of the planned films – maybe even as a standalone film?

Which left us with the grand finale, Transformers: The Last Knight. Let me start by saying that I wish they had started the Transformer franchise with Age of Extinction, the first film involving Mark Wahlberg, instead of the first three with Shia LeWackedOutOfHisHead.

Transformers 5That film, and this new release, have been the superior films. Again, no spoilers, but it is certainly worth going to see.

Probably won’t be doing a trifecta again anytime soon, but this one was well worth the time and occasional numb butt.

Now, its back to work time for me, seeing if I can create a world and populate it with characters worthy of making you take root in your favorite chair, numb butt and all.

 

 

Nice First Day Of Summer Surprise

So my first day of summer begins with this 5-Star review of Escaping Infinity…

“Richard Paolinelli’s “Escaping Infinity” is a damn good read. It has the vibe of a “Twilight Zone Episode” while also reminding me of the film “Dark City”, while building up into something truly sensational. The story works so well because the writing is meticulous as it is entertaining, blending together aspects of mystery, sci-fi, and dare I say the paranormal? All the twists and turns really make you question where the story will go next. All the while, I truly felt like a guest of the Infinity, which was both chilling and exciting. I was urged to keep reading to figure out what step our daring Peter would take next to get out of the purgatory he finds himself trapped in.
My only complaint was the Liz back story section. I personally felt it could have been split up into two parts, but it doesn’t distract because the story keeps moving at a furious pace. Paolinelli manages to capture the epic scope of the scenes.
Overall, this is a very solid piece of science fiction that explores so many ideas it will damn near melt your brain trying to absorb them all on the first go. I can’t really go into them without going into spoiler territory, but pick up a copy of this novel today and see for yourself.”

Thanks for the great review Joshua!!!!

Excellent