Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Too Quiet

I know it's been rather quiet around here. Too quiet, really.

I wish I could say that it's like the quiet in a horror movie, which is going to be broken by something spectacular or scary.

Nope. This post is like the cat that jumps out to startle the nerve-wracked heroine: pretty much nothing. Just a little note to keep this blog from becoming an utter dead zone.

It's not to say I haven't been keeping busy. REALLY busy. I had my first child in December of 2012 and undertook a huge move from one side of the Bay Area to the other in the summer of 2013. So, that should excuse me from a year's worth of blog posts.

Despite all that, I've managed to do quite a bit of writing--keeping the tools sharp, as it were--and even completed a monumental piece of work (there's no such thing as writing a "practice novel," I learned). Pregnancy can be a hell of a deadline!

It may be a while before I have news to share here, or even movie or book reviews (who knew that babies cut in to one's free time so?). Hopefully, though, it'll be less than 16 months before I write again.

Until then, here's an image to sum up what life has been like:

Pretty friggin' sweet.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Happiness is...

...getting your contributor's copies...

...and seeing your story in print. 

Shakespeare Shaken is now available in print as well as a series of digital downloads (including a solo of S.H.R.E.W.) from Red Stylo Media. Having seen it in person, I highly recommend splurging on the print version. The artwork pops so much more on paper than on a screen.

Really, though I don't care how you choose to read it, as long as you give it a peek!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

S.H.R.E.W. now available from Red Stylo Media

The day has finally arrived! My short comic story, S.H.R.E.W., for the Shakespeare Shaken anthology, is now available for  download!

Download Here for only $1.99

From the Red Stylo Media site:
Kat is a perfect specimen of female spitfire and grace, and her corporate handlers in the Super-human Research, Education and Weaponization project can see her potential. But it's Kat's strength that also keeps her from submitting to her S.H.R.E.W. training, and so the programmers resort to bringing in the mysterious and sinister Doctor Petru to help Kat stay the course...
Shakespeare Shaken meets the perfect (bionic) woman in S.H.R.E.W., written by Sherezada Kent (author of ELDORADO from Poe Twisted), with art by Jarrod Perez; color and letters by Mark Mullaney ("Star-Crossed", "Zombie Cruise", and "The System of Doctor Canne and Professor Bulle".) 
This download includes a special note from the author, as well as a BONUS pin-up from artist Laura Guzzo!

Many other tales from Shakespeare Shaken are also now available, so be sure to check them out!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

New Project: Shakespeare Shaken

All the world's a stage, 
and all the men and women merely players...

In my case, all the world's a comic book, and the men and women artists and writers!

I'm excited to announce that my second short comic story, "S.H.R.E.W." will be included in Red Stylo Media's upcoming Shakespeare Shaken anthology!

"S.H.R.E.W." is a dark science fiction take on The Taming of the Shrew, filled with sinister science experiments, corporate warfare, and dangerous women. With art by Jarrod Perez.

Digital release of the "S.H.R.E.W." single issue is slated for September 12. Be sure to check out the full line-up of other Shakespeare Shaken titles, there's some great stuff in there from some really talented folks (including many Poe Twisted alumni)! All titles will be release together in a beautiful print anthology as well.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Movie Review: Snow White and the Huntsman

When I first heard about Snow White and the Hunstman, I had twin reactions. One was utter disappointment: "Damn. Looks like someone wrote the story I've been working on for two years." The other was excitement: "Snow White in armor? Charlize Theron as the Wicked Queen? Thor as a sweaty, hot ranger? Sign me up!"

I wanted to love this movie. I really did. Though it was a thoroughly entertaining two hours, there were just a few things that made it fall short of true love. On the up side, though it didn't exceed any of my expectations, it didn't really disappoint me.

When Snow White comes of age, she comes into the power that could destroy the powerful Queen Ravenna once and for all. Fleeing for her life into the Dark Forest, Snow White is reluctantly aided by the Huntsman, who is haunted by his own personal tragedy. Together, they make a perilous journey towards the one bastion of freedom left in the ravaged land, where Snow White must find the strength to face her stepmother--and her destiny--once and for all.

Visually stunning. My eyes were never bored, as each shot is lovingly composed for maximum pop. The special effects were  gorgeous, ranging from the grotesqueness of the Queen's darker magic to the ethereal beauty of the faerie realm. The costumes were impressive as well, and I'm sure there's already some ambitious seamstresses out there whipping up bird skull-adorned ball gowns for Comic Con this year.

Seriously, check out the details. I want this dress.

Ladies for the win. Though no one's going to be getting any Oscar nods for this, I was impressed by both Charlize Theron's portayal of the Wicked Queen AND Kristen Stewart's rendition of Snow White. Especially since she was severely limited by her dialog, Kristen did a surprisingly good job of portraying a range of thoughts purely with her expressions and body language. I admit, I have soft spot for her, mostly 'cause I'm rooting for her to break the "Bella" mold of her Twilight fame. This isn't too far away from that "sweetly bewildered" comfort zone, but she had some break-out moments.

As for Charlize, she was everything I wanted in a Wicked Queen. Cold and beautiful as sharpened gold, she practically oozed casual malice with every step. She also did a good job of making the Queen a bit sympathetic, even up until the end. She must have had fun with this role. 

Delivers what it promises. I went in expecting an action-packed, dark fantasy with lots of special effects, a dash of romance, and some slight "girl power" themes. I got exactly that. To be fair, maybe it's because they gave away most of the film in the preview, or because it's adapted pretty faithfully to a story I've known since I was three, but I rarely found myself surprised. Which, to be fair, could also be con, but seeing as I was already geared up for what they offered, I think it's a win.

Bob Hoskins was a nice surprise as the Dwarven seer. 

Weak writing. Really, for such a beautifully made film with such a broad range of talent, the script was sadly lacking. Snow White really doesn't say much, and there's some key moments of character development that were lost. You really don't get much of a sense of a personal growth arc for her -- or for any of the characters, really. The story stays firmly in the land of archetype, which is appropriate somewhat, considering it's based off a fairy tale, but I'd hoped to see some real life breathed into the avatars we'd all grown up with. 

Same old story. An extension of my previous gripe, but I felt it needed its own bullet point. I'd hoped for the story to challenge some of the themes of the classic Snow White tale, especially when the previews showed an armored Snow charging a fire-lit battlefield. In the end, though, it was still about who was the "fairest of them all." There's no real explanation of why Snow White is the "chosen one" except for "'cause she's pretty." You could cook up some theory about the "three drops of blood" magic that supposedly went into her birth, but it isn't clearly explained in the movie.

See? Fruit can be bad for you.

Worst. Siege. Ever. Okay, this is just my personal gripe, coming from playing tactics/strategy games and spending some time in a renaissance faire fighting guild, but that was seriously the sloppiest, worst-planned castle siege I've ever seen put on film. It's seriously cringe-worthy. 

Who needs formation or tactics?
So, that's my two cents. If you're a fan of fantasy, fairy tales, and sword-and-sorcery films, then check it out. I'd even recommend spending the clams to see it in the theater, as those special effects are worth it. It may not change your life, but it'll definitely entertain you on a Friday night. 

On a more personal note... though Snow White and the Huntsman is similar in elements to the aforementioned story I'd been working on, it's still different enough. That comfort, in and of itself, was worth the price of admission...especially since I like my story better. 

Friday, June 1, 2012

Big Wow! ComicFest 2012 Recap

(L-R) John Gillette, Reyna Young, myself, and Dylan D Walsh
on our "Horror Filmmaking 101" panel at Big Wow! 
This was my first time attending San Jose's Big Wow! ComicFest. More importantly (to me, at least), it was my first time ever speaking on a convention panel.

I have to admit, I've dreamed about sitting at one of those long, tablecloth-draped tables since the first convention I attended. It just seemed so cool, that all those people would sit and listen to what knowledge you had to share. So when my friend Reyna Young (horror hostess Miss Misery) asked me to participate in her "Horror Filmmaking 101" panel, I was over the moon.

Also on the panel were her husband/partner-in-film John Gillette, and one of her regular actors/production assistants, Dylan D Walsh. We covered everything from where to get screenplay ideas to how to distribute your film once it's done. The panel had a great energy, and it felt more like a group of filmmakers chatting over coffee than a formal panel.

Proof that I actually said something.
Honestly, a bit of that might have had to do with the crowd. You see, there was a little SNAFU with the scheduling, which led to a last-minute switch in the programming that didn't make it into the printed convention guide. So, unfortunately, most of our audience showed up at the wrong day and time.

However, the crowd we did have was awesome. Family, friends, a few devoted con-goers, and a sea monster. What we lacked in quantity, we made up for in quality.

Really, how many audiences have a sea monster?
I was especially touched that my friend and Everything I Needed to Know About Zombies I Learned From the Movies's Director of Photography Erin Castrapel (Mr. Thumbs Up in the photo) made a surprise trip up from Los Angeles to see the panel. It made the day all the more special, especially when he coordinated an impromptu lunch reunion with another old friend.

As for the convention itself, I liked Big Wow's vibe. It had enough clout to draw in some big names (Jim Lee and Terrance Zdunich, for example), but it also had a casual, local con feel. I love conventions where you can stop and chat with the artists and creators and really get to know them and their art. I'll take that over the big budget cattle-stampede the Comic-Con conventions have turned into (and no, I'm not bitter at all that WonderCon abandoned the Bay Area for freakin' Anaheim). We didn't stay long, but we had a great time, and consensus was that this con was a definite keeper. I'll be back next year!

For some more thorough reviews of Big Wow! as a whole:

Oscar Benjamin's Examiner review (with LOTS of gorgeous photos)

Graphic Novel Reporter

ConventionLife (shout out to Michael Tang for photographing our panel)

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Big Wow! ComicFest 2012

Exciting news! Looks like I'll be speaking on my first panel ever this weekend at the Big Wow! ComicFest in San Jose, CA!

On Sunday, May 20, from 12pm-1pm, I'll be joining Miss Misery and other filmmakers to discuss the (artificial) blood and (very real) sweat and tears that go into making independent horror films. We'll be in room C of the San Jose Convention Center, Hall 2. (There's been a recent change to the schedule. We are indeed speaking Sunday, not Saturday.)

I'll be talking about the making of "Everything I Needed to Know About Zombies I Learned From the Movies." It should be a great time, so stop by and hear the war stories!