Happy 17-01 trekkies! (It's like May the 4th, but for real nerds). And this year's 17-01 brings us a new season of Star Trek Discovery!
Even if the movies have essentially stalled, Star Trek is alive and kicking on TV.
Because you don't have CBS All Access and can't watch the new Star Trek but you desperately want to stay in the loop and read all about the latest episodes: That's right, Captain's Blog is back in full swing as Discovery Season 2 kicks off 2019 the only way we could ask: long and... prosperous? Okay, I don't know what that means, but it suddenly sounds dirty. Anyway, let's just dive in...
National Novel Writing Month has come and gone and for the first time in the many years I have called myself a writer and known about this event, I actually took part. Did I succeed? Hell yeah, I kicked the shit out of NaNoWriMo and loved it from Day One! I wrote a novel in 35 days and with some polish and editing, it could be one of my best works. So for all you future fans out there reading my old blog archives, here is how I did it...
One last Bond review before the end of the year. This is the one where 007 travels to the exotic faraway land of Upstate New York to watch horse racing. Wait, what...?
I was originally going to read the whole series in a year, but I'll have to settle for just four instead. The first three were fantastic surprises, each better than the last, and despite some problematic handling of women and race, they held up to modern aesthetics and sensibilities better than I could've ever hopes. Much better than the old movies. They read as if they were written specifically for the Daniel Craig, Casino Royale fans. No small feat, when some sixty years separate them.
Now It Can Be Told:
"Dear Sir, poor sir, brave sir: You are an experiment by the Creator of the Universe. You are the only creature in the entire Universe who has free will. You are the only one who has to figure out what to do next--and why. Everybody else is a robot, a machine. Some persons seem to like you, and others seem to hate you, and you must wonder why. They are simply liking machines and hating machines. You are pooped and demoralized. Why wouldn't you be? Of course it is exhausting, having to reason all the time in a universe which wasn't meant to be reasonable."
"And so on..."
These are the opening lines of a fictional novel which drives a fictional man of unwell mental health over the edge at the same time as Kurt Vonnegut himself steps into the schizophrenic imaginings of his own fictional world to speak to the fictional author of that fictional novel quoted above and offer him the one thing he's never known in his fictional existence, independence and freedom of will. Kurt Vonnegut is brilliant in a totally insane way, and Breakfast of Champion is totally insane. In a brilliant sort of way.
"The expression "Breakfast of Champions" is a registered trademark of General Mills, Inc., for use on a breakfast cereal product. The use of the identical expression as the title for this book is not intended to indicate an association with or sponsorship by General Mills, nor is it intended to disparage their fine products."
Am I the only one who sorta never heard of this one?
After falling in love with the American epic and life achievement that is East of Eden, I was determined to sneak in some more Steinbeck before the end of the year. My schedule not permitting (I'm neck deep in a backlog of indie-steampunk to review right now), I was however able to absorb the audio book during a long drive to the Roller Coaster Capital of the world, Cedar Point in Ohio. Turns out, it's only three discs. But the reader was phenomenal so by all means, check it out.
Who says Sci-fi can't be wholesome family entertainment and still, ya know, good?
That book kicks ass. That’s what my friend said when he heard I’d finally finished it. And in many respects, it does. The novel is dedicated to Nathaniel Hawthorne. William Faulkner said he wished he’d written himself. It’s so infused with Shakespearian poeticism that you can’t tell when he’s quoting directly, indirectly, paraphrasing or inventing wholly new material. And of course as final evidence of it’s ass-kickingness, all the best parts of all the best Star Trek movies are lines from Moby Dick. Lines like this one (click the link to see for yourself…)
“Towards thee I roll, though all-destroying but unconquerable whale; to the last I grapple with thee; from hell’s heart I stab at thee; for hate’s sake I spit my last breath at thee!”
Or This One from First Contact.
It might be the worst film. But it's the best book. Third in the James Bond collection by Ian Fleming, This is Moonraker.
Hey, have you checked out that movie The Martian with Matt Damon stranded on Mars? Well, the guy who wrote that also wrote a second book called Artemis. I read it. Now I'm reviewing it.