Sunday, December 29, 2013

Bizarre Bites....Yuck

I guess it was inevitable that Bizarre AC, and its first Horror Con, would also be hold to a thing that is known as Bizarre Bites. I thought it sounded cool, not really thinking my wife would want to eat there, but she did. Well, I guess I should have known she would have wanted to, but I guess, it was a situation that, as a man, I should have known better and kept it all hush hush.


The idea was cool, bizarre foods, but I was hoping the food would be normal, only made to look gross. Instead it was gross food, made to look appetizing. Here was the menu:

The Menu (Prepared by Chef Demetrios Haronis)
Peruvian Grilled Heart with Aji and Yucca Fries
 Pig Parts Ragu with Shaved Pecorino Romano Cheese and Fresh Basil over Penne Pasta
Sea Urchin Sushi with Ponzu Sauce
Eel Sashimi with Kabayaki Sauce
Crispy Rocky Mountain Oysters with Cajun Remoulade
Tongue and Cheek Tacos with Housemade Tortillas, Cilantro, Tomatillo Salsa and Avocado Crema
Blood Sausage Sliders with Green Apples and Red Cabbage
Kidney, Belly and Steak Pie with Mixed Mushrooms, Yukon Gold Mashed Potatoes and Red Wine Demi
Assorted Fruit Flavored Ant and Worm Lollipops
Now some of that doesn't sound too bad, but it really was. To me, anyway. The Sea Urchin, was not available however, much to my wife's dismay. The even, was held at the Top of the Trop where the high rollers usually get down, but for this event it was closed for a private event. Interestingly enough there is no bathroom facility in the high rollers club, either that or you have to be a high roller to gain entry. 
So, to keep things moving in a steady and linear fashion, after rushing from the showing of Sparks which ran over, we made it to the elevators at 4pm on the nose, and there were a few people waiting for the elevator and I thought we were all headed for this particular event. That was not the case however, and only two others were headed there with us. A Neal and Annabelle from www.Withoutyourhead.com
They had overheard us, or rather I whining about the food, and they mentioned they were going there as well. Annabelle mentioned she was not going to even attempt to put bull balls in her mouth and I believe Neal said he was looking forward to the experience. My wife, wanted to try everything and she did. 
The elevator brought us quickly and when we exited we noticed there weren't too many people there and got inside quickly. We got a table and offered for our new found friends to join us. I took some Yucca fries and some pasta from the pasta with pig parts. My wife took a little sampling of everything. 
Waiters came around with a sampling of NJTW, which is New Jersey Toxic Waste. An interestingly green drink, that tastes good and packs a little punch. It was what I needed to wash down the pig parts and pasta I had slathered on my plate on my second tour up at the buffet. The desserts were great, they were normal little cake balls, and pastry puffs. I did not try the lollipops, but my wife took my portion to go. 
During the dinner, conversation was cool,we spoke about cons, horror actors and movies, in between this our dinner partners took out a camera began shooting a segment for their website on the food. We were entertained with a history of the blood sausage, and how the food tasted to the uninitiated, that being all of us there. 
Rafaela offered Neal a bit of advice, "Try the bull balls, with the remoulade."
While he liked the remoulade, he did not think it made the Rocky Mountain Oyster taste any better. 
Both of them reviewed most of the food and gave their comments and even panned to us for our reactions though I did not have my make up test done and may be edited out. 
In any rate the Bizarre Bites aspect was a fun one, not very well attended and from what I heard, and from my wife, the food was good, for the most part. Rafaela liked the food, I liked the desert, and we both loved the company. 
After dinner it was a quick trip to the room for my wife to have a smoke then on to meet one of her icons. Kane Hodder....
to be continued. 







Thursday, December 26, 2013

Saturday The 14th...Bizarre AC

We all remember that little comedy horror movie Saturday the 14th right?

Saturday, we woke up early, a bit too early for the fun to begin again, so we had to kill some time and decided to take a walk through the casino.After losing some money in the casino, we headed to the Fiesta buffet and gorged ourselves. That is,  I gorged, while my wife ate some breakfast. Soon it was time and we headed to the Green Room. The room had just opened and not everyone was there so me walked down to Eric D Wilkinson's table. He was hawking his wares, which included Mischief Night, a movie he co-wrote and one that we wanted to see at the Con. We spoke briefly and he mention some of the other films he has involvement with including, Sparks.

We had no idea what Sparks was, so he showed us a trailer. It looked fantastic, we were hooked and had to rearrange our schedule in order to take in the 1pm screening. I bought a dvd of Mischief night, and the graphic novel of Sparks and we walked around some more. We had less than an hour to get to the screening so we kind of breezed through the room. Fred Williamson was there, as was some greats like Doug Bradley whom we all know as Pinhead from Hellraiser. Some of the others had not yet arrived, but I was trying to see Brian O'Halloran from Clerks, and Vulgar. He was approachable and answered questions, though at that moment he was being monopolized by some fans. I darted away, and searched for Heather Langenkamp, who to my dismay had not yet arrived.

The wifey was occupied at one of the kiosks selling steampunk jewelry and other wares, and I went next table over to Karlos Borloffs table. There were comics, old horror magazines and other wares that I asked about, but the people minding the store had no idea of prices so I was determined to come back, soon after I suggested we go up to the fourth floor and see Sparks.

Buying a couple of sodas we went upstairs and got to the screening room just before one pm. Eric D Wilkinson, one of the producers of the film had come in to introduce the movie, and he gave each of us a Sparks no. 1 comic. He spoke about the movie, working on it, about William Katt's involvement, and his as well. While this was going on some one involved with Bizarre AC let us know there were some technical difficulties going on and they were working to fix it. The film was on BluRay and the projector was for DVD. After an hour of the Tropicana people running back and forth with other projectors and wires and converters, we were ready to watch the movie. We were a bit worried because it was a bit after 2 by now and we had to get upstairs for Bizarre Bites.

We were assured the film was worth the wait and we waited until the lights went out and the movie began, ans soon settled down to what was a great film.


Now I do not know what you heard, if anything, about Sparks, but it is a fantastic movie. It is a mash-up of noir, superhero, action, fantasy, sci fi, and horror. Sounds like a genre milkshake if there ever was one, and this was blended to the most perfect consistancy. The acting was superb, and the effects were great, though it was a movie made from a much lower budget then the comic book movies of the big two, it did not suffer because of it. Sparks thrives.

Sadly when the movie was over, we were not able to stay for the full Q & A because we had to make it upstairs to the Top of the Trop for Bizarre Bites. Not exactly what I was looking forward to, but wifey was, and there was no turning back....

Monday, December 16, 2013

Friday the 13th...Road to Bizarre AC

Hello all,

I wanted to post daily and tweet but my smart phone died on Thursday and that was not to be unfortunately. The wife and I had a great time, and I plan on providing some details as to what we saw, bought, seen, and did, and bought.


I had not heard about this until my publisher, Adam Millard or Crowded Quarantine Publishing, mentioned that this con was going on near me. I investigated, was thoroughly impressed by the lineup, and thought, wow, I would love to go, and maybe I could get to sell some of my novellas and anthologies that I have appeared in. I contacted the people who run it, and I had missed out on the exhibition spaces, and they were a bit out of my price range. That being said, I was still psyched about going, after all, this was going to be my first con regardless.

The wife and I packed up the car and headed down to AC. We got there at six or so and checked in, got to the room and decompressed for a few, the wife needed a cigarette as well, and then we looked through the paperwork that was available at the main desk to see where to go, but there still wasn't any detail about where to go to get our wristbands. We tried to go back to where we checked in, which was located right by the green room but were told we had to go to the fourth floor.  Turns out, the area to register was near where our room was all along.


We went there, got our passes, and our wristbands and were told to come back for the Bizarre Bites bands. Something I will go into detail about later. Yuck.

In any rate, we went into the main hall, bought a shirt, and looked around rather briefly. There seemed to be a lot of things going on all at the same time and we were drawn into the Inklusionists show, which was ending and didn't know where we should start. My wife wanted to see Kane Hodder right away but it was closing in on 8 and we wanted to see Return to Nuke Em High Volume 1....



The movie was as great as any Troma Film could ever be. The movie was funny, and had a fair amount of thrills and gore galore. Whatever you have come to expect from a Troma film was delivered and more. There was also a cool soundtrack with a song entitled Last Song by rapedoor, that I played constantly on the laptop in the room whenever we went to unload our swag. The movie is has a volume one attached to its name, and did end with a cliff hanger, we were treated to a sneak preview and the first five minutes of the sequel and it was followed by a Q & A with the cast. Catherine Corcoran, Asta Paredes, Clay von Carlowitz, and Vito Trigo. Surprisingly they admitted that they had never seen the original movie before doing this film. I always find that hard to believe and wonder who and how you could never have seen such a classic. Nevertheless, they were engaging, and informative and friendly. It was a great experience. After it was over it was near ten, and we were dead tired, so we decided to go to get something to eat.

Broadway Burger, which is part of the Tropicana, and had nothing to with Bizarre AC was excellent. The food was good, the drinks were strong, and the price was not too bad. We did all but pass out when we got back to the room. More to follow in the coming days.


Thursday, December 12, 2013

Road to Bizarre AC

As the day draws near, I cannot help but arrange and rearrange the things I plan on doing at Bizarre AC, they added more movies to the their screenings and more Q&A's. Even if I chug 5 hour energy I cant possibly do all there is to do this weekend. I will do my damnedest though. For example, we are doing the Bizarre bites, don't ask, and at the same time is Zombie Prep. Personally, I rather be prepared for the Zombie Apocalypse than to dine on nasty food. Well, nasty food prepared by a gourmet chef, so is that Nasty Chic? I ramble. We should arrive around 5, just in time for the festivities to begin. I will blog each night when we get back to the room, and daily after that until I am able to discuss all we saw and heard and did at this, the first ever Bizarre AC. Who knows, maybe I will see you there.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Hardest Blogging Man in Show Biz...Not

Believe it or not it has been a year since I have blogged, and well, its horrible. I have taken to the Twitter waves and tried to get myself out there as of late, and now deiced that I need to blog as well. Not much has happened in the past year concerning me and publishing. I did however have a story of mine recently published in 100 Doors To Madness.


This is a great anthology of flash horror. My story Summoning was accepted, and I am in fantastic company.

Other writing news for me, was I went back to Crime writing for the summer and completed the first novel in a new series with a writing partner. This project garnered some interest from Bad Day Books, however, my partner and I decided it wasn't a great fit for us, so we are shopping that around. More news on that when it becomes available.

In the terms of Lust, my novella, and the reason I created this blog that I have left dormant for far too long, well, I am trying to rekindle interest. There are some great reviews on Amazon, but very few. Reviews mean sales. So this past Labor day, I had a massive giveaway, and gave away several hundred copies. Several hundred. Reviews as a direct result of that giveaway total 1 to date. That is right. You read correctly. ONE.

My editor and publisher once again told me I need to get myself out there and that sales come from appearances and the like and well the time seemed right this time. Bizarre AC is having a convention, the first ever in AC and I live relatively close. I contacted them, the price for a spot was cost prohibitive for me. I would have had to order more books at cost, and then would have to have sold over hundred fifty books, minimum to break even. That was the good news. Bad news was that they had no spots left.

Back to square one. I printed up a thousand book marks. Info about my novella, the anthologies I have been in and where to follow me. In case you didn't know that's on twitter @cisthebigdog, but I know you, dear reader, know that.

Wifey and I are hitting the convention, it will be our first, with DVDS and swag to have signed, money, to buy new swag, and an appetite to eat some weird food at Bizarre Bites, which includes nasty foods like blood sausage and cow balls. Yes I know, the things I do for love.

In any rate I have offered some people already a copy of my book, and will bring several, and many, many bookmarks. Hoping to network, I will make my way through the convention at the Tropicana seeing some cool people, getting autographs and hopefully making some professional connections.

Stranger things have happened.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Reviews

Well I do have some reviews, not as much as I would like, though I do love all of the ones I have. Of course there are the amazon reader reviews, which are totally cool.

AMAZON REVIEWS

And there was the one from Horror Talk:

Horror Talk

And the latest one which also does double duty as it appears on Amazon. This one is from an awesome fan site dedicated to the Succubi.

A Succubi's Tale

Please check out these reviews and their respective sites, and while you are at it, why not order a copy
of LUST, you will be glad you did!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

GUEST BLOG: James N Cook



Hello everyone, this is James N. Cook, author of the Surviving the Dead series, and the upcoming Jeremiah Cain: Vampire Hunter series. I’m thrilled to be a guest here today, and to have the chance to share some thoughts with you.





As we get closer to Halloween, folks are undoubtedly going to start gravitating toward horror novels, costume parties, and scary movies. Over the course of the blog tour I’ve been participating in this month, the most common questions I have received have centered around what my favorite authors, movies, and television shows are. So, to make your Halloween more enjoyable, and sufficiently scary, allow me to detail a list of some of my favorite horror related books and movies, by category.

Werewolves:
Best werewolf novel: Autobiography of a Werewolf Hunter by Brian Easton.
Seriously: Best. Ever. And don’t miss the sequel, Heart of Scars (which is a bitchin’ title, by the way). This is a dark, no bullshit, eat your face off, straight up horror novel centered around a werewolf hunter who is a take no prisoners badass. I loved it, and it gets my highest recommendation.
Best werewolf movie: The old classic, An American Werewolf in London. That agonizing scene where David transforms into the wolf to the tune of Sam Cooke crooning Blue Moon still gives me the shivers.
Vampires:
Best vampire novel:  I Am Legend, by Richard Matheson.
This novel was a groundbreaker when it was published, has inspired several movies, and even inspired the creation of other genres. It’s blend of fear, isolation, and the psychological effects of surviving the end of the world had a forceful influence on my vision of post-apocalyptic writing that eventually led to my first novel: No Easy Hope. Don’t read this one alone on a dark night. It’s deep stuff.
Best vampire movie: From Dusk till Dawn.
Come on, it has Quentin Tarantino and Cheech Marin, not to mention Salma Hayek dancing on a table clad in little more than an albino python. What more do you need to know?
Zombies: (this one is near to my heart)
Best zombie novel: World War Z, by Max Brooks.
If you haven’t read this yet, do so immediately. Brooks tells the story of a near-apocalypse with vision, heart, and a visceral sense of impending doom. It’s one of the most compelling books, of any genre, that I have read in my life. It will go down as a classic in horror literature.
Best zombie movie: Until the WWZ movie is released, I’ll have to cheat here and say The Walking Dead on AMC. (Yes, I know it’s not a movie. I said I was cheating.) More specifically, season one. Season two was okay, but not as good as the first six episodes. Still, it’s the best zombie apocalypse story that has yet made it to the screen, and sets the bar for any that will come after.
Honorable Mention:
Movies: Event Horizon, John Carpenter’s Vampires, and Vampire Hunter D.
Books: The Deacon Chalk series by JR Tuck, White Flag of the Dead by Joseph Talluto, Mark Tufo’s Zombie Fallout series, and Immortal, by Gene Doucette. All good reads, and definitely worth checking out.
I hope this list gives you something entertaining to do, and have a happy Halloween!


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All five of us - Tonia Brown, James N Cook, John O' Brien, Armand Rosamilia and Mark Tufo - hope you have been following along on the Haunted Halloween Blog Tour 2012. We love to see comments after the posts, and we also love to pick a random commenter and give away a free eBook or even a signed print book, so maybe you'll get lucky!
We have centralized all the upcoming dates and blog posts on a Facebook event page. Feel free to join us there and see what is coming up next!