Monday, September 21, 2015

Black Sci-fi’s Hottest writers unite to create The CITY!

Atlanta September 25, 2015 MV Media is proud to announce the release of The City the first Cyberfunk anthology edited by Milton Davis. The City anthology is a unique creation. It’s a concept anthology, a collection of stories where eighteen different authors share their vision of a single idea. It’s Cyberfunk, stories that play with future concepts from an Afrocentric perspective. Most of all it’s engaging, exciting, thought provoking and fun.

“Began, as a random idea in the middle of the day. I’m sure there are underlying concepts that sparked these words, and a closer examination of those concepts would bring forth a deeper discussion but at the time it was just a statement. Soon afterwards I posted these words on the State of Black Science Fiction, a group dedicated to the creation, support and distribution of science fiction and fantasy by and about people of African descent. The response was immediate and amazing. Other writers added their own ideas and linked them with images that helped convey their thoughts. Soon we had a continuous thread of ideas and concepts orbiting the central theme. Balogun Ojetade combined these ideas then created a City Manifesto, a guideline for stories based on this new creation. The next step was inevitable; the creation of an anthology,” Milton Davis.

The authors who are the Cityzens of the City are as follows.
The Cityzens
(in alphabetical order)
Jeff Carroll is a writer and a filmmaker. He is pioneering what he calls Hip Hop horror, Sci/fi and fantasy. His stories always have lots of action and a social edge. He has written and produced 2 films, Holla If I Kill You and Gold Digger Killer which won BEST Picture at the International Hip Hop film festival. He has published 3 books the novelization to Gold Digger Killer, Thug angel Rebirth of a Gargoyle and It Happened on Negro Mountain. His short stories have appeared in both The Black Science Fiction Society’s anthology and their magazine. He writes out of South Florida where he lives with his wife and youngest son. Jeff Carroll is also the author of the non-fiction book The Hip Hop Dating Guide. When he is not writing Sci-fi stories he enjoys speaking on Healthy Dating to college and high school students everywhere and goes by Yo Jeff. Please connect with him on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and his blog

Gerald L. Coleman is a Philosopher, Theologian, Poet, and Author residing in Atlanta. Born in Lexington, he did his undergraduate work in Philosophy and English at the University of Kentucky before completing a Master's degree in Theology at Trevecca Nazarene University in Nashville. His most recent work appears in, Pluck! The Journal of Affrilachian Arts & Culture Issue 9, Drawn To Marvel: Poems From The Comic Books, Pine Mountain Sand & Gravel Vol. 18 and he is the author of the scifi/fantasy novel When Night Falls: Book One of The Three Gifts. He is a co-founder of the Affrilachian Poets. You can find him at or follow him on Twitter @Iconiclast.

Milton Davis is a research and development chemist, speculative fiction writer and owner of MVmedia, LLC, a micro publishing company specializing in Science Fiction, Fantasy and Sword and Soul. MVmedia’s mission is to provide speculative fiction books that represent people of color in a positive manner. Milton is the author of Changa’s Safari Volumes One, Two and Three. His most recent releases are Woman of the Woods and Amber and the Hidden City. He is co-editor of four anthologies; Griots: A Sword and Soul Anthology and Griot: Sisters of the Spear, with Charles R. Saunders; The Ki Khanga Anthology with Balogun Ojetade and the Steamfunk! Anthology, also with Balogun Ojetade. Milton Davis and Balogun Ojetade recently received the Best Screenplay Award for 2014 from the Urban Action Showcase for their African martial arts script, Ngolo. His current projects include The City, a cyberfunk anthology, Dark Universe, a space opera anthology based on a galactic empire ruled by people of African American descent, and From Here to Timbuktu, a steamfunk novel.

Ray Dean was born and raised in Hawaii where she spent many a quiet hour reading and writing stories. Performing in theater and working backstage lead her into the delights of Living History, creating her own worlds through writing seemed the next logical step. Historical settings are her first love, but there is something heady about twisting the threads of time into little knots and creating new timelines to explore. There are endless possibilities that she is just beginning to discover.

Malon Edwards was born and raised on the South Side of Chicago, but now lives in the Greater Toronto Area, where he was lured by his beautiful Canadian wife. Many of his short stories are set in an alternate Chicago and feature people of color.

Ashtyn Foster has had a deep love of literature since she was two and has been writing since she was six years old. She loves telling stories, whether they be her own through words or others via the stage. SF was engrained in her at an early age while watching the Star Trek tv shows and Batman movies with her parents. She thanks them for their gift of aliens, space/time travel and superheros and to her best friend for teaching her the true meaning of deadlines, as well their love and support.

Otis Galloway has an insatiable wanderlust. He started out in Bermuda, then subsequently left there for Worcester, Massachusetts. After that, a move to Boston, then after collecting ex-wife#1, a move to the West Coast, with stints throughout California, in San Francisco, Albany, Berkeley, Palm Springs, Los Angeles and San Diego. After collecting ex-wife #2, he decided to stop collecting ex-wives (because they’re expensive) and instead returned to his first love, collecting music.
Otis currently lives and works in Glasgow, Scotland. He is working on his first book, which is nonfiction and very sweary. Occasionally he is known to put together quite a decent DJ set.

Keith Gaston was born in Detroit, Michigan. After earning a Bachelor’s in Computer Science and two Masters degrees, he decided to pursue his passion of writing. D K Gaston is known for writing books in different genres that are filled with action and adventure. He writes mysteries, crime, thrillers, and speculative fiction. He has written over a dozen novels since 2007 and shows no signs of slowing down. D K Gaston is a devoted husband and father residing in Michigan. He is currently working on his next novel.

Chanel Harry is an up and coming science fiction, fantasy and horror writer that hails from The Bronx New York. “The Score” is her first work that will be published in the anthology. However, she is in the process of working on her debut novel “Fire Lady: Tales of the Soucouyants.

Natiq Jalil is a self-taught, emerging visual artist who specializes in watercolor, acrylics, oils, and digital media. He focuses his work on human form and emotion, and often includes organic shapes and written words in pieces. Though originally from Montgomery, AL, he has lived all over the US, including Denver, Pittsburgh, and most recently New York City. He has sold work to many businesses and private collectors throughout the world, including Italy, South Africa, South Korea, Sweden, Japan, UK, and various states in the US. There is also a documentary in production centering around the paintings he completes on the subway trains of New York City.  Though he is finding success in visual arts, Natiq also considers himself a storyteller. Much of his success in visual arts is due to the fact that he easily recants the individual stories of each of his visual works. He is a lifelong fan of sci-fi, fantasy, manga, and anime, not to mention an avid reader. He writes short stories of urban speculative fiction in his spare time, and hopes to pursue his writing in addition to fine art as a career. His short story in The City is his first published written work.

Valjeanne Jeffers is a graduate of Spelman College, and a member of the Carolina African American Writer’s Collective. She is the author of Voyage of Dreams; Immortal; Immortal II: The Time of Legend; Immortal III: Stealer of Souls; The Switch II: Clockwork; Immortal IV: Collision of Worlds; Mona Livelong: Paranormal Detective; and Colony: Ascension.  Her fiction has been published in Pembroke Magazine; Steamfunk!; Griots: A Sword and Soul Anthology; Genesis Science Fiction Magazine; PurpleMag; LuneWing; Griots II: Sisters of the Spear; Possibilities, and The City (in press). Book I of The Switch II: Clockwork was also nominated for the best ebook novella of 2013 by the eFestival of Words; and her short story Awakening (from Griots I) was published as a podcast by Far Fetched Fables. Valjeanne is co-owner of Q&V Affordable Editing. Preview or publish her novels at:

Alan Jones Born and raised in Atlanta, GA. Alan attended Georgia Tech and Ga. State, obtaining his MBA from the latter. In addition to writing on the student newspapers at these institutions, Alan worked as a columnist for The Atlanta Tribune. Alan continues to write and his latest work, Sacrifices, is available on Amazon.  When not writing, Alan, a former Wall Street Consultant, currently works as an Oracle Business Software Consultant.

Brandee Laird is a warrior-poet from Seattle, WA, USA. She is a dedicated parkour athlete, one of the founders of the 501(c)3 non-profit organization Parkour Visions, and acts as the Coaching and Curriculum Director of their Seattle facility. She lives her life exuberantly and with the intent to write it down, constantly collecting experiences and ideas from the world around her. In the daytime you can generally find her in the parkour gym or in the trees, or frequenting the urban shadows at night.

Kai Leakes Born in Iowa, but later relocating and raised in Alton, IL and St. Louis, MO, Kai Leakes was a multifaceted Midwestern child, who gained an addiction to books at an early age. The art of imagination was the very start of Kai’s path of writing which lead her to creating the Sin Eaters: Devotion Books Series. Since a young child, her love for creating, vibrant romance and fantasy driven mystical tales, continues to be a major part of her very DNA. With the goal of sharing tales that entertain and add color to a gray literary world, Kai Leakes hopes to continue to reach out to those who love the same fantasy, paranormal, romantic, sci/fi, and soon, steampunk driven worlds that shaped her unique vision.
You can find Kai Leakes at her website:

Edison Moody AKA B. Sharise Moore
Published author, poet, certified educator, and budding screenwriter B. Sharise Moore is a New Jersey native and graduate of Rutgers University. At present, B. Sharise is working on the completion of a short film based on her collection of short stories, Djinn and Tonics, to be published later this year.
Howard Night
Author of "The Serpent Cult" and Head Writer of Dark Universe: Interregnum Speculative Fiction Books, Howard Night loves setting his characters in warped versions of his hometown of Philadelphia and neighborhood; Mt. Airy. His next novel, King's Bounty, set in the DARK UNIVERSE will be available summer 2015.

Balogun Ojetade is an author, master-level martial artist in indigenous, Afrikan combative arts and sciences, a survival and preparedness consultant, a former Communications and Asst. Operations Sergeant in the U.S. 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne) and a priest in several Afrikan spiritual traditions.  Balogun is Master Instructor and Technical Director of the Afrikan Martial Arts Institute, which has branches in the Unites States, England and Ghana, West Afrika and Co-Chair of the Urban Survival Preparedness Institute.  He is the author of the bestselling non-fiction books Afrikan Martial Arts: Discovering the Warrior Within and The Afrikan Warriors’ Bible and eight novels, including the Steamfunk bestseller, MOSES: The Chronicles of Harriet Tubman (Books 1 & 2); the Urban Science Fiction saga, Redeemer; the Sword & Soul epic, Once Upon A Time In Afrika; a Fight Fiction, New Pulp novella, Fist of Afrika; the gritty, Urban Superhero series, A Single Link and Wrath of the Siafu; the two-fisted Dieselfunk tale, The Scythe and the “Choose-Your-Own-Destiny”-style Young Adult novel, The Keys. Balogun is also contributing co-editor of two anthologies: Ki: Khanga: The Anthology and Steamfunk.  Finally, Balogun is the Director and Fight Choreographer of the Steamfunk feature film, Rite of Passage and co-author of the award winning screenplay, Ngolo.

Ced Pharaoh was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. A lifelong bookworm; his earliest favorites were comic books/graphic novels, mysteries (Encyclopedia Brown, Sherlock Holmes etc), thrillers, poetry, non-fiction biographies and sci-fi/fantasy! Ced has a blog, 360BEYOND where he highlights indie artists and other creative ideas. Also, he has written several comic book scripts for indie publishing companies that are slated for release.  Ced is working on his series, The Legacy Chronicles and in 2012, he published the collection of dark fantasy poetry, Watch The Shadows: The Legacy Chronicles Book 1. He is busy working on the novel, Urban Mage | The Legacy Chronicles Book 2 slated for 2015.

K. Ceres Wright is the author of the cyberpunk book, Cog. Her short stories, articles, and poetry have appeared in Hazard Yet Forward; Genesis: An Anthology of Black Science Fiction; Many Genres, One Craft; 2008 Rhysling Anthology; Diner Stories: Off the Menu; and Far Worlds. Contact her on Twitter: @KCeresWright

The City is available at

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Black Dreams Matter

        Most people don’t know there is a Black Sci-fi movement going on.  It is a battle over the minds and dreams of black people.  The struggle for more diversity in the world of Sci-fi and comic books is much more than some Hollywood affirmative action demand, it is essentially a struggle for the imagination of young black people and the future of African Americans.  The cries and outrage around the race of the character Rue in the movie Hunger Games in 2012 was much different from the frustration around black characters in horror films dying first in 80s horror films.  The Rue controversy is directly connected to a series of events in the Sci-fi literature world like a challenge made to readers entitled Stop Reading White, Straight, Male Authors for One Year.  This call for change has led to an entire website

Science fiction is the most expensive genre of film because of special effects and most of today’s Sci-fi comes from books or comic books.  In the prose of books it costs the same to destroy a city as it does to tell a love scene so it is easier to produce a story which has been proven in a book before they invest all the money it takes to make it into a film. This is why the effort to diversify books is so important.  This summer there was a small step forward in the book diversification battle front.  The World Science Fiction Society’s Hugo award was at the center of a redefining battle.  Being the top Science Fiction award the Hugo became the focal point of the cries for change, however within the WSFS the movement was met with an organized resistance called The Sad Puppies.  The Sad Puppies organized a rebuttal to a list of diverse author nominees for 2015 Hugo award but their efforts to resist the change did nothing more than call the question.  Each author they lobbied for either lost or refused to accept their nomination and withdrew from the competition.   Their efforts allowed for open minded authors like George RR Martin to speak up and show how many of their members support the change and that the feelings of readers and fans were heard by Sci-fi creators. 

Science Fiction is the new frontier for black people.  It’s not that we didn’t think about it but science fiction is the new thing.  We are living in the future.  We have hand computers that do more than the Star Trek tricorders. Science fiction is the most important genre of literature.  It test and drives the undiscovered.  It fuels technological development.  It cautions our leaders.  Science fiction guides society and if black people want a piece of the future then they need to use science fiction.  Growing up I knew a few kids who didn’t think they would live in the future.  They didn’t even think about the future or dream about the possibilities.  It was like their imagination was imprisoned.  It was Dr. Martin Luther King Jr speech I Have a Dream that fueled America to move closer to racial equality.  Dreams matter. Dreams connect us to the future, it help us build a bigger tomorrow. Without dreams there is no change.  Without dreams there is no hope. 
I think there is hope for our dreams. Not only because people are demanding change but because people are also responding to the demand. There are Black Science fiction groups like the Black Science Fiction Society which has over 7,000 members from all over the country.  Groups like Black Nerd Girls and ECBACC (Eastcoast Black Age of Comics Convention) are filled with writers, illustrators and filmmakers who are answering the call.  They are producing quality products, products which embody the dreams and ideas of black people.  They answer questions about how robots will be infused into our society, what would the post apocalypse be like and what space holds for our future.  Every culture has a unique view of the future and the inventions that will make it.  The voice and vision that black people have needs to be a part of collective dreams and ideas which build the future.  Black dreams matter not just for black people but for us all.  That’s why I urge you to join the black science fiction movement.

I am science fiction writer Jeff Carroll and I am a member of the Black Sci-fi Movement.
Me and Larry Correia of the Sad Puppies 
 Black Writers from The State of Black Science Fiction Facebook group
 Authors Jeff Carroll, Balogun Ojetade, Alan Jones, Gerald Coleman and Milton Davis of the anthology The City.
The City anthology a shared universe created by black writers.
The weekly radio show of The Black Science Fiction Society.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Jeff Carroll a leader in the black sci-fi movement releases his first collection short stories

The book of hip hop sci-fi stories

Florida August 2015 Hip Hop Comix N Flix announces the release of the streetlit Science fiction short story collection Sci-Fi Streetz The book of Hip Hop Sci-fi stories by Jeff Carroll. Sci-fi Streetz includes stories from a variety of the subgenres that are lumped into the Sci-fi section of the bookstore. The book features horror, robots, demons, time travel, alternate history, space travel, zombies, werewolves and pirates. 

“This book is written with the Hip Hop generation in mind because they are the future and Sci-fi fuels the imagination.  Sci-fi pushes the imagination and makes people dream.  Many young people have so much drama in their lives they only think about the happenings of today’s world.  They rarely think or dream about the future or enjoy the escapism that Sci-fi provides. If you can dream it you can achieve it and I wonder if you don’t dream what will you achieve?,” said Jeff Carroll of his work.

Sci-Fi Streetz  (Hip Hop Comix N Flix Paperback,August 11, 2015, ISBN: 978-0-9820087-4-4 $15.00 and $5.99 ebook) set to change the face of Streetlit and Science fiction with author Jeff Carroll. What is extra special about this collection of stories is that it includes a story written by Malcolm Carroll his 12 year old son.

Just as with Hip hop’s five elements (MCing, DJing, Dance, Drawing and Beatboxing) hip hop’s science fiction manifestation serves a medicinal purpose which is to relieve stress with escapism.  Hip hop’s primary elements were not the therapeutic tools of some government social worker they were the organic creations the youth who were suffering from poverty, crime and poor schools.  These young people used the arts of poetry, dance, drawing and music to ease their frustrations in these harsh conditions.  Hip hop sci-fi comes out of that same energy.  Born from the dreams, nightmares and fantasies of the unsettled minds of the oppressed people, hip hop sci-fi is raw and unapologetic.
Hip hop sci-fi is as necessary as mainstream science fiction.  Science fiction guides society.  It test and drives the undiscovered.  It fuels technological development.  It cautions our leaders. Science fiction is the most important genre of literature and it wouldn’t be complete without a hip hop expression. 

Check out the hottest stories
Nightmare on Halloween Camp: follows the story of Maurice and Eni from Thug Angel Rebirth of a Gargoyle.  In this story Maurice has to transform into his gargoyle form in order to rescue Eni (his daughter) from a demonic entity.
The Screaming: tells the story of a werewolf who has learned to control his transitions through a strict vegetarian lifestyle.  When gang violence erupts in the community surrounding the college he works at, things go horrible wrong.
The Voyage of the Blackstar: is the first part of a series of stories following a group of African pirates as they wage war on European slave traders and they lay claim to the Caribbean.                      
Escape From Hell, American Gangstress: This is a hardcore version Harriet Tubman’s story.  In this story Harriet finds a family in the woods as they escape slavery.        
The Church of God and Space: This follows a group of church missionaries as they go on their first journey.  After experiencing everything that can go wrong in their travel through space they have a rude awakening when they reach they destination planet.                         
The Programmable Man: In the future everyone has robot for security.  However when a program is developed that can turn these security robots into the ultimate love machines people find out love is a very strong emotion.
A Robot’s Nightmare by Malcolm Carroll: A robot is sent into battle and his report changes the course of the war.          
Interview of a Monster: This is an up close and personal look at a slave who is the top barnyard bareknuckle fighter.  A story of courage and pride, of love and pain, of hope and fear, and of the promise of a better world.
Tired of Dying: Just a couple of guys surviving a zombie apocalypse who have a different take on life.
Ass kicking Time: When you have the to ability to travel through time you realize there is time to do different things.  There is time to love and time to hate, to make people feel good and time to feel pain.

The Girl from Negro Mountain:This story follows Destiny who survived the tragic death of her parents.  Now on her way to a group home she learns the supernatural powers that protected her on Negro Mountain may not have been exclusive to the mountain.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Meet Author Jeff Carroll at the World Horror Convention.

 Atlanta, GA, Friday, May 8 Marriott Marquis – Sarnath Room 1:00-2:00pm. Horror/Sci-fi writer Jeff Carroll will be on a panel at The World Horror Convention.  The panel will be moderator by author Balogun Ojetade. The other panelists include writers Gerald Coleman, Crystal Connor, Craig Laurance Gidney, John Edward Lawson. 

The title of the panel is Different Visions: African American Spec-Lit from Afrofuturism to Beloved.  Some of the most exciting spec-lit today is coming from multicultural viewpoints, including dynamic works by African-American / Black authors. Anyone following the latest debates in SF/F/H knows that diversity also has become a controversial topic. This panel will explore horror and spec-lit in general as envisioned through the lens of the Black experience from enslavement to the Civil Rights Movement to the murders of Black people throughout America at the hands of law-enforcement.

The World Horror Convention is an annual gathering of professionals in the horror industry; publishers, authors, artists, musicians, filmmakers, dealers and, of course, horror fans. WHC serves as both an industry insider’s networking event and a chance for fans of the genre to get together, meet some of the creative talents in the field, and generally spend a weekend celebrating All Things Scary.

In the late 1980’s, a growing number of horror professionals and fans who attended the World Fantasy Convention (at that time one of the only conventions for horror fans) felt that they needed a convention of their own. Founded by Beth Gwinn (who had the idea), Joann Parsons and Maurine Dorris, the first World Horror Convention was held in Nashville, Tennessee in 1991.

There has been a World Horror Convention every year since, in cities all over the United States as well as Canada and the UK. Guests of Honor have included virtually every living legend in the horror field in literature, movies, television, art and more.

The World Horror Convention is presided over year-to-year by the World Horror Society, an unincorporated literary society made up of professionals in the horror field and past convention chairs. The first WHS Board consisted of, Beth Gwinn, Jo Fletcher, Charles L. Grant, Steven Jones, Ginger Buchanan, Stanley Wiater, Joanne Parson & Maurine Dorris.  For more information visit them at

Jeff Carroll is a writer and a filmmaker.  He is pioneering what he calls Hip Hop horror, Sci/fi and fantasy. His stories always have lots of action and a social edge.  He has written and produced 2 films, Holla If I Kill You and Gold Digger Killer which won BEST Picture at the International Hip Hop film festival. He has published 3 books the novelization to Gold Digger Killer, Thug angel Rebirth of a Gargoyle and It Happened on Negro Mountain.  His short stories have appeared in both The Black Science Fiction Society’s anthology and their magazine. He writes out of South Florida where he lives with his wife and youngest son.  Please connect with him on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and his blog

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Why would a black person want to be 007?

Just as everybody else I’ve been reading the debate over the idea of Iris Alba a black man playing the role of James Bond 007.  Most people follow the debate directly and argue should a black person be allowed to play a character which has historically been played by white actors?  While that is an interesting question I think a better question is why would a black person want to play 007?
If a Black/African person was to become James Bond they would be a sell-out.  Not the actor who played him the character in the movie.  First let’s look at who agent James Bond Mr. 007 is.  James Bond is an agent for the British Secret Service AKA Her Majesty's Secret Service.  He doesn’t work for the people of Britain he protects the Queen and her empire which happens to include England and other foreign interests.  These interests are countries in Africa. 
                Selling a Black James Bond would not be easy because of the role England has played and still does play in Africa.  James Bond is respected as a smart man and if he doesn’t know what England is doing in Africa to his own people then he would be dumber than Babar. I was taught that you have to help yourself before you help others.  For a  black superhero to run around protecting New York or any other city is like a father who protects the neighborhood but does nothing about the people robbing and mistreating his own family.
                Also being a secret agent is really a punkass move.  When you think about the concept of a secret agent it’s a slick way of fighting.  Its like slipping small pox in blankets and giving them to Native Americans or presenting a city who you can’t beat with a Trojan Horse.  Sure war isn’t fair but I respect the warriors like Mimnon who Brad Pitts character in Troy was based on.  He would challenge the general of an opposing army to a one on one fight to side step an army to army battle.  I respect the fighters in Kung Fu movies who had honor in their fights and would bow before they would start fighting to the death.  Sniping and spying are punk moves but we enjoy them.  We accept them when they are used to protect us from dastardly villains.
                I say all of that to still say would I go see Idris Alba as James Bond? Hell yeah.  I love James Bond.  I just think there is a lot to think about when writing a Black 007 story.  When I think of a black spy I think of The Spook Who Sat by the Door.  I think for a black person to be a spy or even a global hero they have to be clear on who the enemy is and who they are fighting for.  That’s a concern I have with black superheroes like Black Panther.
                I don’t think it is wrong for there to be a black version because as many others have said James Bond is a rebooted character.  A variety of actors have played him.  I also think black people should create their own black spy stories.  As a writer I of course have my own spy story.  In fact I am part of group of black writers headed by author Milton Davis who are developing black secret agent stories to put into an anthology.  We call it Spyfunk , so support us on Facebook.  We are not the first black people to write black secret agent stories. My favorite black secret agent story is by Nigerian author Valentine Alily called Mark of the Cobra.  My facebook friend Steven Barnes and his wife Tananarive Due have a series starting with Casanegra: A Tennyson Hardwick.  Then there’s Black Pulp an anthology of black syp type heroes.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Bodyslick an Afrofuturistic story. By John H Sibley

This is a book I’ve been wanting to read for a long time.  This is one of few books I bought NEW.  Most of the books I buy are either from an author or from a used bookstore but this was a book I wanted, no I needed to read.  I first saw Bodyslick in an ad in Vibe magazine.  The cover was nice and it looked like an album cover more than the cover of a book.  I consider myself late to reading because I didn’t start reading for fun until my 40s.  I blame the lack of interesting books among other things.  I love Science Fiction but even the books which had interesting and crazy monsters on the cover read boring.  They had weird words and corny reactions.  I feel that if there were more people like me in the stories I would have read more.  That’s why as a writer I am writing for myself at 16.  That brings me back to Bodyslick.  Since it looked so Hip Hopish I thought it might be good and similar to my own writing and goal.

Bodyslick was exactly what I thought it was.  It is a fast moving, urban talking story.  It reminded me of my own writing.  Bodyslick has the tough edge of Streetlit with the Sci-fi setting of Blade Runner.  Bodyslick tells the story of a human body parts dealer Malcolm Steel Jr aka Bodyslick.  It takes place in the year 2031 not too far into the future but far enough to have some major differences.  In the story humans have developed a sophisticated body parts underground trade.  The story follows Bodyslick as he does business around the world selling legs, hearts and even heads.  
 Bodystlick was more Streetlit than it was Sci-fi.  It had a few elements of Sci-fi but more Streetlit elements. There were some pretty gangster scenes in Bodyslick. While the pacing was fast and the chapters weren’t long I felt the story was long.  It reminded me of the movie Sin City where the story went all over the place but came together at the end.  If I could improve on something in the story, it would be to focus on the main story because I felt a lot of the scenes weren’t important to the main conflict of the story.  Bodyslick was an enjoyable read and I think it was a good book.  I like the characters being black.  I like the variety of elements in the story.  They surprised me.  Robot love and gangster kill scenes were not what I expected.  This book is a good entre into Sci-fi for Streetlit readers.  We need more male readers and this book has just the Donald Goines edge to interest them. 

I give this book 3 stars.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

My top Movies of the Year 2014

Okay here it is with much pain and agony I present my top ten movies of 2014. I do this because I feel movie dates are still the best type of dates to go on.  That said 2014 by volume may have been the best year for movie dates because there were just so many good movies to see.  On my list I have my top 10 but my honorable mentions are just as good as my top ten.   However, there were a lot of good movies 2014 didn’t many GREAT movies.  Many my top 4 are great but that is a low great.  And my 5-10 where low okay.  2014 had more repeated brands than I ever remembering one year having.  There were remakes and sequels hardly any room for an original film story.  Don’t get me wrong remakes and sequels can be great films.  I think of the Fugitive as a great remake or the Rise of the Planet of the Apes, which followed a bad remake.  I think the Lords of the Rings was an excellent series.  Each of the sequels was just as good as the original.  I think the Terminator had good sequels.  So, I’m not knocking a movie because it’s a sequel or a remake.  I do feel that sequels and remakes have to have their own stories and fresh ideas.  I think that’s why some of 2014’s remakes and sequels didn’t hit the ball out of the park.  That said it does look like it’s a trend because 2015 has almost as many remakes and reboots of successful brands as 2014 did.  That’s starting with the reboot of Star Wars.  Anyway, here is my list with some explanation.

1.                  Dawn of the Planet of the Apes.  Good almost great movie.  I love this new rebooted angle.  The only part that dragged a little was the fight scene at the end.  I hope they continue the series.
2.                  The Equalizer.  I had to give Denzel this spot.  He had been crushing movies since Training Day.  This movie he goes back to his Man on Fire roots.  I hope that do a sequel.
3.                  The Edge of Tomorrow.  I never liked Tom Cruise in a movie before but seeing him get his butt beat and killed over and over again was fun.  I love the story.  The ending was medium but didn’t ruin it.
4.                  Guardians of the Galaxy.  Marvel had to go here.  So many super heroes are not from Earth that this allows them to include them.  Sure it’s all about Earth but now we get to see another take on a populated Universe besides Star Wars version.
5.                  Interstellar.  This is many people’s number one movie but to me it was to focused on the scientific fantasy of the story and not the entertainment aspect.  I don’t think having a few monsters or alien life forms would have messed up the science.  But so what if it did save the true scientific discussion for the documentary.  Writers are liars anyway so find a way to make it happen.
6.                  The Hunger Games Mocking Jay PT 1.  I like Katness so much that I can tolerate all of the extra loves elements added to the story. I love the additions to expand the sci-fi of the story.  I think it is what Hunger Games was meant to be.
7.                  X-Men Days of Future Past.  Well, I ain’t going to lie it took me a minute to get over the shape shifting sentinels I was able to enjoy the film.  I was disappointed that the story didn’t focus on the X Men battling the Sentinels.  However, I enjoyed seeing Biship on the big screen.  
8.                  The Hobbit the Battle of the Five Armies.  Now, this film sums up what was missing in the films of 2014.  How I explained this movies’s short comings is image a boxing match with a Dragon and when you go to the fight the Dragon goes down in the first round.
9.                  The Maze Runner.  I enjoyed this film.  I took a lot from The Lord of the Rings and while I don’t agree with the concept of man’s savage nature the question of how will human children behave if left to construct their own society is a interesting question.  I also liked how they answered the question in this story.  
10.              The Giver.  This was the first book to have children killings.  This was the book that influenced the Hunger Games and Maze Runner.  It wasn’t as action packed but it also didn’t have big boring love element.
Honorable mentions.  These are all films that are just as good as the films 5-10 but the part that messed them up was a little bigger or more prominent.  I will just list what messed up the film for me.
1.                  Sin City, A Dame to Kill for.  Nothing really stood out but the was less smart or diverse plot wise.  The first Sin City had many different stories but this one just had one.  Really I don’t know what this story missed I just didn’t think it was great.  Maybe I have to see it again which I will.
2.                  RoboCop. New and fresh reboot but less racial diverse and the story was the same.  They should have stole from all of the headlines about Police and civilian relations and wrote a new RoboCop story like JJ Abrams did with Star Trek and they did with Planet of the Apes.
3.                  Purge 2.  This is the only movie on this list which I didn’t see in the theater.  I enjoyed this sequel better than I did the first part.
4.                  Dracula Untold. The special effects were great but the story wasn’t fresh enough.  Underworld changed the game.  This was a low budget story.  It needed more fighting and more story.  Something.  But good none the less.  I don’t even think I liked the ending.  The reboot of the Wolfman was better.
5.                  300 Rise of an Empire.  Again you go to see a Mike Tyson fight and when you get there he’s not there.  I wanted to see King Xerxes get his big ass fight on but no it’s a story about a crazy woman.  Not bad but I can count the films I liked where the main character was somebody I wasn’t supposed to like.
6.                  Tyler Perry Single Mom’s Club.  Hot film.  No complaints.  The only problems is that it’s a comedy and comedies have to be Rush Hour to contend with Sci-fi for me.
7.                  Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Good reboot got me interested in a story I don’t like.  This time the turtles didn’t seem like white boys acting like black kids as much.  Maybe because white kids act cooler now and the contrast isn’t as big as it was before.
8.                  Pompeii.  For a movie were everyone knew what was going to happen it did a good job of writing a background story.  The ending was a little weak also.
9.                  Captain America Winter Soldier.  Man there’s no way if you would have told me this movie would not have made my top ten in 2013 I would have not believed you.  However it didn’t make my top ten.  I only became a fan of Captain America after his 2011 movie.  Now the magic has worn off maybe.  Or maybe it was just the weak story.  No matter what this movie was medium.
10.              Godzilla.  This is another movie that could have been so much more.  I should have put it in my top ten just because it was so much better than the 1998 remake.  I felt jept because again I wanted to Godzilla fight more.  But what could I complain ALL of the old Godzilla movies are told the same way.  I think that Pacific Rim was a game changer for all of these large monster films. 
11.              Transformers Age of Extinction.  I have never put a Transformer film in my top ten but this came the closest.   I think Mark Wahlberg was the big factor.  I also think that it wasn’t too slap stick.  Who knows I doubt I will ever watch it again.

Horrible I only feel two movies got me for my money last year.  These two movies missed there trailers mark.
I Frankenstein.  I don’t know what happened to my man Kevin Greviox but this was far from Underworld.  It was like a bad knock off of Underworld.
Divergent.  This was bad all the way around.  I was a bad book and a even worse movie.  I thought they would allow the film production process to work out all of the correctable parts.

What’s or the forefront. 2015 looks to be another good year of film.  I’m looking forward to bunch of films.   Road Warrior, Star Wars, Avengers Age of Ultron and Jurassic Park 

As always I include my wife’s top ten and my son’s.
My wife
1.      The Equalizer
2.      Guardians of the Galaxy
3.      The Giver
4.      Maze Runner
5.      The Hobbit Desolation of Smoug
6.      Planet of the Apes
7.      Captain America Winter Soldier
8.      Malificent
9.      Pampeii
10.  X Men Days of Future Past.
My son
1.      Interstellar
2.      Guardians of the Galaxy
3.      The Giver
4.      X Men Days of Future Past
5.      Maze Runner
6.      The Hunger Games Mocking Jay PT 1
7.      RoboCop
8.      Dawn of Planet of the Apes
9.      Purge 2
10.  Ninja Turtles