Monday, June 27, 2011

Pleasant Little Surprise

Leave it to TCM to do it again!

This morning I sit down with my tea, turn the TV on and there was a film set in 19th Century NWFP during the British Colonial Era. You may recall that my bedside book is now Soldier Sahibs which is about that very subject, specifically the legendary soldiers like John Nicholson and the like. Imagine my good fortune to discover it was yet another of those obscure adventure-tinged films I had never heard of: Zarak (1956) starring Vicor Mature, Michael Wilding, a most tasty Anita Ekberg, and a young up-and-comer named Patrick McGoohan.

Zarak is set in the NWFP of the 19th Century and tells the story of a chief's son caught with one of dad's sexier wives (Ekberg). Dad isn't too happy and has Zarak beaten and, after a holy man takes pity and saves his life, banished. Zarak gathers loyal brigands and becomes a successful bandit chief with a good soul, of course. He then discovers that dad's hot ex-wife Salma (Ekberg) was also saved from death by a more reasonable associate of the rash and tyrannical dad. Zarak and Salma resume their affair freely. Well, it isn't long before Zarak's antics draw the attention of the nearest Brit field commander, Wilding's version of John Nicholson (who also inspired Kipling's hero 'Red Beard' in Kim), who intends to put an end to Zarak's shenanigans, making the frontier safe for civilized barbarians. I will leave the rest for you to seek out and view, but rest assured there is much sword clashing, rifle and mortar fire, and some lancing between manly posturing and romantic clutches.

Of interesting note is that the film was shot on location -- but in Morocco. Having spent some time in Central Asia and the former NWFP soldier sahib haunts, I was impressed with their convincing use of the terrain to depict the setting of the story. Also, one of the producers was Albert Broccoli, legendary for the Bond series and the director was Bond director Trence Young himself. Having missed some of the credits, I later discovered the writer to be Richard Maibaum, who adapted Dr.No, From Russia With Love, and Goldfinger to the big screen. For this film, Maibaum adapted a book by A.J.Bevan which tells the true story of the real Zarak Khan, a 20th Century figure who fought for the British during WW2 and was executed by the Japanese in Burma.

I liked this movie. Good fun, classic trappings. I'd like to have it in my collection. Check it out!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Saturday Night's Movie

OK, for me, a movie doesn't have to have a classic adventure plot, if it has the adventure elements and trappings. Case in point: Run For The Sun (1956) starring Richard Widmark, Jane Greer and Trevor Howard.

A loose remake (there were two) of the classic The Most Dangerous Game, this film has Widmark as a somewhat reclusive writer and Greer as a reporter trying to get a story out of him. Their plane crashes in the Mexican jungle where they are taken in by Trevor Howard and his German buddies. And guess what? Yeah, Widmark thinks he recognizes Howard's voice and other clues mount up to reveal what the viewer suspects the minute a gun parts box with 'Mauser' clearly painted on it shows up (as if the snarling Dobermans aren't enough). Trev and the boys are runaway war fugitives, Howard having been a male 'Tokyo Rose' during the hostilities. From there, cat and mouse ensues as Dick and Jane try to escape through the jungle then turn back to steal Howard and company's plane tucked under the trees. I'll let you find out what happens.

There is something I love when TCM does it: runs film I've never even heard of, much less haven't seen. There's something I love about old films: even if you can guess what the basic plot points are gonna be, they're still enjoyable to watch. I enjoyed this film. The set pieces were the biggest ever built by the Mexican Estudios Churubusco and the location was the ruins of an old sugar plantation built a few centuries back by Hernan Cortes, southeast of Cuernavaca (been there, done it, got the shirt). Now that's pretty damned cool for adventure history buffs. The plantation ruins were subsequently refurbished and turned into a hotel. Filmed in the jungle, using the ruins, and throwing in a couple of airplanes and some vicious wild pigs, a big cat and some parrots, (all in technicolor) this flick is worth seeing at least once. The best part is that I was just flipping through the channels and found it.

Movie buffs may recall that Widmark and Greer appeared together in another movie that includes two lovers in and among Mexican jungles and ruins: Against All Odds (1983) with Jeff Bridges and Rachel Ward, which was itself a remake, this one of Out of the Past, starring Greer herself in the Rachel Ward role. Personally I enjoy such trivia.

If you're like me and you've seen enough classic adventure movies that you truly enjoy more obscure older films with simply the elements and trappings of adventure, then check out this film, Run For The Sun...

Friday, June 24, 2011

Beer Review

I thought I'd continue some of the features of LCL Magazine on this blog and the 'Beer n Grog' review was always one of my favorites. This is where I would try a beer or some other booze and share my opinion along with a few memories not directly related to the product being featured. generally the criteria for making it into an LCL review is even the slightest association to an adventure theme, such as the label merely depicting some trapping of classic adventure.

Today's selection is Hangar 24 Columbus IPA. Since this brewery is located in a building across from the small Redlands Airport here near the orange groves that remain to remind us of Old California, their motif is the days of biplanes and barnstorming.

I chose to try a chilled 22oz bottle of Columbus IPA, served in an equally chilled glass mug, accompanied with a sandwich of sliced chicken breast and cheese on Ezekiel bread with mayonnaise. After the sandwich ran out, there was last night's popcorn and some taco flavored Doritos. My recliner parked in front of the bedroom TV, where I watch movies in the wee hours, was the perfect lunch spot to enjoy this beer during Khartoum (1966) starring Charlton Heston as Gordon. Since I've been to this city at the convergence of the Blue and White Niles more than once, it was appropriate viewing.

I forget how much Kiplingesque Gunga Din-ish soldiering there is in this movie of mostly weak attempt at presenting Gordon as a Lawrence of Arabia type figure. That is to say, not nearly enough but at least it's there. I've always felt there should have been more of Kitchener (who was a major in 1883, the year this telling depicts). One of my favorite British actors of all appears as Woolsley, an excellent choice, and the film could have used more of him, as well. That's not to say it's a bad film, because it's not. It just doesn't quite deliver what it intended, sort of like the Columbus IPA I was drinking with it.

Having spent some time in Khartoum, I enjoy watching this film because it reminds me of seeing the actual locations that were used, such as Gordon's villa and his boat (Well, the locals like to say it's Gordon's boat but whether they used his actual boat or not it is the actual boat used in the film...again, from what I'm told and could tell by sight). You know those scenes in movies when government officials, usually military and security types, gather for local traditional cuisine
and bureaucratic schmoozing? Such were the circumstances I first saw 'Gordon's boat' early in my first stay in the city. Anyway, if you care to look, you can still find remnants of Gordon's Khartoum including his ditch. Believe me, if you're ever there, you would care to look as there's little else to do besides whatever reason brings you to Khartoum in the first place.

As I sipped this bitter brew, I realized Hangar 24's Columbus IPA is best consumed with food, preferably something salty and spicy and robust. The food really calmed down the assault on the taste buds. My mistake was probably kicking back in a reclining chair drinking an ale, for dozing off soon followed. That's OK, it's Friday.

Once Khartoum ended, I raced through the commentary on Mario Bava's Italian cut of the anthology film Black Sabbath, enjoying the wonderfully frightful segment 'A Drop of Water' and the 1960s pulp lesbian overtones of 'The Telephone' so delightfully played between French and Italian actresses. I recall my dad dragging the family to see this film at a drive-in during my childhood and I loved every minute of it.

A good beer, like any decent alcoholic beverage, is best enjoyed when it reminds one of memorable adventures. As I thought of my time in Sudan, I remembered the villa compound where we resided, literally a stone's throw from the Nile. We had a nice and well tended pool I never swam in, for some reason. Haboubs, or sandstorms, would blow in every ten days or so and could be pretty dramatic the first time you experience one. We had local African girls who did housecleaning (and loved the job because we paid well). I was told they worked topless up until right before my first trip and only stopped the practice because some anal retentive dickhead in our group complained that it was inappropriate. Seriously, the Africans laughed at us for this guy's complaints and our bosses' acquiescence to his hang-ups. I wish uptight puritanical Americans would just stay home, inside their houses, and never go out. There we are working on a potentially dangerous job in a dangerous world and we have a guy who can't handle tits twice a week. Jesus H. Christ, did this guy's mother have any sons?

It probably sounds crazy but one of my pleasures when in places like Khartoum or the Middle East is to go out alone for a few hours. We generally have to pair up so often that you spend an entire month with no solitary time. Sometimes I'd get into the Landcruiser and drive to Omdurman to get away from all things modern and just smoke my pipe and think and dream. I'd have a pistol on me, so I wasn't completely naked. It's simply that I can take only so much of hearing about sports and talking about 401Ks or whatever else a lot of men think is interesting to discuss when they think they should talk. Me, I like talking about history, especially the history of where I'm at when I'm traveling. Not everyone is into that, in the vehicle to the wilderness to smoke a pipe.

If you haven't had any Hangar 24 products, I recommend them. Once in a while I go to the brewery with my friend and his dad, who has a plane at the airport. We get the cold fresh stuff. Their Columbus IPA should be very cold and is enjoyed best with food.

Where I Think Adventure Needs To Go

In the interest of keeping our favorite genre alive, I often wonder what I can do as a publisher and writer to contribute to its longevity.

I'm talking classic adventure, the whole pith helmets and lost jungles and elegance and heroism side-by-side-in-the-field thing. Naturally, those attracted to classic adventure are always going to appreciate the trappings of the genre, but how do we keep it fresh and how do we attract future generations of writers and fans and publishers?

One thing we can count on is that nostalgia will always draw a fair amount of readers and writers. But I think what appeals to me as a writer and a publisher is that classic adventure is as much an era as it is an idea, and classic adventure's particular eras force challenges on the characters that modern adventure does not. Frankly, aside from how hot she looks, the Lara Croft thing is a bore, to me. Any twenty-something with an endless supply of money and hours of gym time to become a master acrobat can do what modern adventure heroes do. With all that money and a commando team at their disposal, the threats have to be ridiculous to the point that even serial heroes of old would shake their heads. It gets pretty old when 'the world is at stake' every time. Even the Bond series has come to terms with that and occasionally offers the smaller, more personal threat. This is why I say classic adventure is the best adventure because of the nostalgia for the past -- a past without advanced technology as we know it, thus more dangerous for the hero and more thrilling for the reader or movie-goer.

Why do I appreciate Steampunk? It's the perfect antidote to classic adventure fading away. First, it is nostalgic in spades. All the trappings we classic and pulp adventure fans love have equally enchanted Steampunkers. My favorite group of fans to see at Comic Con every year are the ever-growing number of Steampunkers in the best costumes of any (and there are always some really good superheroes and a handful of various genre movie character players to compete with). Steampunkers love the same old adventure movies us greybeards have loved since childhood. Second, where Steampunk has taken the 'rugged' Victorian & Industrial Age technology is simply very cool. Just as modern adventure drones thought 'olde school' was laid to rest by the updating of everything, Steampunk has been proving them wrong for years. Disney's iconic version of the Nautilus remains relevant! (You can have that goddamned ugly behemoth from League of Extraordinary Gentlemen...)In Steampunk, your characters use Tesla electric guns and global-reach world-grid communications and airships employ anti-gravity propulsion, and everyone still dresses so refined. It really is classic adventure on steroids and just so cool. Finally, what makes Steampunk so important to the survival of classic adventure is that it not only attracts the younger generations but it is one of the few places in pop culture where young, old and in between can truly come together and speak the same language. If you still haven't embraced Steampunk yet, catch up!

But Steampunk isn't the only thing that will save classic adventure, the other is the New Pulp movement. I'm happy to have been a part of this for a few years now. In 2003, I set out to write what I described (to the interested) as 'pulpier pulp' with my novel Secret of the Amazon Queen, written under my pseudonym 'E.A.Guest'. My intention was to write what I did, a classic adventure tale for mature readers. I never cater to twelve-year-olds and I'm pretty up front about that (though no one should fool themselves, the kids will and do read such colorful stuff...and that is a strategy in itself to keep the genre alive, heh heh heh...). By the time I did my magazine, Lost Continent Library, I was dedicated to the idea of a 'new pulp' and the magazine tried to serve that aim, to some extent. Of course, though folks close to me won't say, I suspect my 'pulpier' direction is also what killed the magazine (Oops!). It was that period a few years ago when the die-hards of old school Pulp seemed to be very picky about who did what with the beloved style. LCL Mag had a good run for about a year, then downloads waned to a comparatively dismal low in January 2009 so I couldn't justify the time it took to create each issue. I like to think I made some contribution to a wider interest in New Pulp which I am convinced will also serve to keep the genre alive for decades to come -- as long as it doesn't simply seek to be a replica of original Pulp. New Pulp must push the limits by applying our contemporary sensitivities to the classic setting, albeit without social anachronisms.

I think along with Steampunk and New Pulp, an appreciation of history will serve to save classic adventure for the future generations. I specifically mean an appreciation not predicated on throwing out the baby with the bath water. There are plenty of writers already whose works reflect what we in the 21st Century all agree were not so peachy about the past. We don't need to re-hash that here. Classic adventure through a New Pulp and Steampunk filter keeps the past fun in escapist fantasy terms. What it also does is influence folks in our times to embrace elegance and civility again, more so than we've seen in the past twenty years. There were some things a hundred or more years ago that needed to be changed, and they were, 'nuff said. But there were also some things about those times that we would have been better off had they never gone away. Oh well, distance makes the heart grow fonder, right? What I mean to say also is this: that as an appreciation of history can lead to enjoyment of classic adventure, an enjoyment of classic adventure can lead to an appreciation of history.

The title of this implied a direction. I'll state more clearly if I haven't: classic adventure needs to continue its embrace of Steampunk and New Pulp and also include actual history to keep what is good there alive as well. I don't like to say 'in my opinion' because I find that redundant, so let's all agree (whoever reads this posting) that when I'm saying something here unattributed to elsewhere, I am expressing my opinion.

OK, I wrote this to hopefully spark a conversation, so let's hear it...Tell me what you think and please please please direct me to new voices I need to know about!

(You thought I was just gonna post ads all the time didn't you? ;) )

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Bedside Book

Having spent a little time in Central Asia, specifically Afghanistan and Pakistan, I can't wait to dive into my next bedside book.

This one is Soldier Sahibs by Charles Allen

Naturally, a report will follow...

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


I've been digging through the archives again...

Here I am on Lake Titicaca shortly before we embarked and then on the Island of the Sun...

I took this with an Advantix camera that was stolen from me near the end of the trip...

While kicking back in a quiet corner and listening to music on my iPod, I was visited by this interesting fellow...

More to follow...

New Pulp Double Volume

LCL has just released a double volume of E.A.Guest's racy brand of pulp adventure on Amazon Kindle!

Together in one volume are the first two Julius Corbin adventures offering adventure for mature readers. The first book introduces the saga with a new take on Haggard's She, this one set in South America. Secret of the Amazon Queen is currently in motion picture pre-production development with Barron Entertainment.

Tropic of Despair is the second book in the series and a more world traveling adventure as a young Scotsman looking for his lost father teams up with an explorer seeking the Hollow Earth and a possessed man who they find on a haunted ship. In Mexico, they join Julius Corbin who guides them all through a dark underworld and on to Patagonian terrors. Looking to return home a worldly hero to win the hand of a young lass, the Scotsman is pursued by a lusty girl and the sorcerer who controls her for his own diabolical aims. Will he survive frightful ghosts, bloodthirsty giants and sinister demons to find his destiny?

You get both books in one volume for only $1.99!

The graphic above is the full cover and spine on the print-on-demand edition available at The Kindle edition features the 'Secret of the Amazon Queen' cover graphic.

If you haven't read this classic of New Pulp, this is where the adventure begins! See the link in the links column to the right of the page...

Travel Photos

Sharing travel photos is a tradition that began with photography itself and something I enjoy. I've posted some from my travels here for you to enjoy and perhaps start a discussion.

This is from my trip to Peru with the WEX Club in 2003. We were en route to Bolivia...

Here I am in Khartoum, looking across the Nile from the Mahdi Wall...

Tula, Mexico, 2002.
Here I am with one of the Atlantes statues...

That's me in Jordan...

I would transit through here to and from Afghanistan. This was an area near the park and the walking street we called 'Broadway'...That is a statue of Yuri Gagarin, Soviet Astronaut...

Here's the boat aboard which we crossed Lake Titicaca and got caught in a dangerous electrical storm...

More to follow...

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The Atlantean Series

You can now get three of the first four titles published by LCL -- in printed editions-- as part of our Atlantean Series.

The Sunken World by Stanton Coblentz is the book that launched LCL in 2002. It is the tale of a submarine crew lost to the depths during a battle and how they discover the sunken civilization of Atlanteans living in an undersea city. Originally written as a serial in 1927, this is a reprint of a 1948 single volume edition with a few illustrations. The LCL 6x9 paperback edition comes with a new cover designed by Bob Aul.

Atlantis Adventure by Antoine Gagne (2004) is the story of Talos and Malia who survive the fall of Troy by fleeing together across the sea, through the straits of Gibraltar where they reach Atlantis. This romantic adventure tells the story of the final days of the great civilization and its destruction. LCL presents this in a 6x9 paperback with a Bob Aul cover.

The third book in this package set is The Hidden Trail by Thomas Janvier, a reprint of the 1890 original, with illustrations, tells the story of a small expedition seeking a lost city of Aztecs in Latin America. This is the first of a two-part presentation published by LCL in 2005, the second soon to be released in digital and POD. 6x9 paperback, cover by Bob Aul.

We are offering these three books in a triple set of new LCL printed first editions. This is a cover value of $34 offered here for the great low price of only $16 for all three, plus $4.95 shipping (and plus tax for CA residents)(no refund, no return, not responsible for shipping damage). This is a great offer you can't find anywhere else for these printed unused books. If you're a classic adventure fan, you'll want this set on your shelf! You'll find the PayPal button on the upper right of the blog page...

Adventure Art Collection

I spent the years 2000 - 2005 traveling around the world, spending a month or more at a time in the Middle East, Central Asia, North Africa, South America, Eastern and Western Europe and one trip to the Philippines. During this period, I began to collect oil paintings and other works of art and handicraft.

Most of the oil paintings in my collection were obtained in Jordan and Iraq, though I did pick some up in Khartoum. The artists in Jordan had attended an art school in Iraq and are able to replicate any style or piece. I didn't press them to reveal whatever trick or method they use, but I assume they have one. Generally, I would buy paintings already completed from dealer artists in Sweifiyeh, a shopping neighborhood in Amman, Jordan and its vicinity. I did commission one painting, a replica of a Rolf Armstrong piece which I will photograph clearly and post sometime. The artist did a great job and I could barely tell a difference -- and I mean barely.

This is one of my favorite pieces. It hangs in my office area, within view of my desk when I write.

I really enjoyed buying the paintings in my collection. Naturally, they were quite less expensive than oil paintings are priced in the US and I could sell them for a lot more than I paid. However, my collection reminds me of my first world travels so I'm not really inclined to part with them. As I get them properly photographed, I will post more articles about them, why I bought each one, and what they mean to me.

More to follow...

Monday, June 20, 2011

Great Deal On Classic Lore!

I have, in limited quantity, new copies of Lost Continents & The Hollow Earth by David Hatcher Childress and Richard Shaver -- for the best price anywhere that I have found!

For any adventure fan or author interested in the topic, this book is a must-read AND a must-have for your collection. Childress provides a thorough overview of the lore of lost civilizations and presents whatever evidence may exist for the existence of hidden ancient tunnels and subterranean cities. Also included is the legendary tale of Admiral Byrd and his alleged encounters with flying machines of the Antarctic and journey to a 'land beyond the Pole'. If underground worlds of South America and Tibet are your guilty pleasure, or especially if you're an author of pulp adventure, you will want this book in your collection.

The special treat of this 6x9 illustrated paperback is the inclusion of the original 1948 edition of Richard Shaver's I Remember Lemuria and The Return of the Sathanas published by Ray Palmer in Amazing Stories. Many have heard allusions or read references to these works, but this volume includes them in their entirety -- including several original illustrations!

Writers and enthusiasts, don't pass up this offer! Only $5 at the link on this page (upper right) plus $4.95 shipping (and I have to charge tax for California residents), is better than the price you'll find at Amazon for a new copy of this book. Get yours now! (No returns, no refunds, not responsible for shipping damage)

Saturday, June 18, 2011

LCL In Its Ninth Year!

It was September 2002 and I was in Khartoum, Sudan, when I got the idea to establish Lost Continent Library. The original concept was a printed magazine, but before I got home from the thirty day trip I had decided to make it a publishing company.

Just today I was going through some old backup CDs and found these graphics.

The original logo banner created by Bob Aul, essentially borrowing the Spicy Adventure Stories font at my request.

The very first print ad that appeared several times in World Explorer Magazine, once in Rockabilly, and several other places for a few years.

One of the test galleys for the cover of Tropic of Despair, using green titling instead of the ultimate purple.

I enjoy going through old files now. It's been long enough to start recycling some of the better images and especially bring out the unused ones. In the nine years LCL has been in business, the company has experienced highs and lows and a transition from traditional print publishing to all digital and POD. Thematically, LCL has gone from strictly classic adventure to embracing a steampunk touch and expanding with additional imprints for true science fiction, noir caper thrillers, and non-fiction. Probably the most exciting is that an LCL book is in motion picture development nearing pre-production. Enthusiasm around here has been stoked by the response to the change and I look forward to bringing more titles and writers to print and keeping classic adventure alive. It all makes me itchy to do another magazine!

Anyone interested in another LCL Magazine...?

Friday, June 17, 2011

Stanley & Livingstone

Currently my bedside book is Into Africa by Martin Dugard.

I bought this book when the paperback edition was released then moved before I could get to reading it, thus it has spent a few years in a box I had in storage. Recently I Netflixed a Stanley and Livingstone movie starring Aidin Quinn so I was primed to pull the book out and give it a go.

The book goes back and forth between Henry Morton Stanley and David Livingstone as one draws near the other. Back in college, I had written my term paper for a History of England course on this topic but never got beyond the basic encyclopedic details. This book has been rather enlightening, bringing more texture to the story than I had known. For those not familiar with this story, during the middle of the Victorian Era, the British Royal Geography Society explored Africa top to bottom, side to side, thus creating the backdrop, lore and tableau for countless adventure books and eventually movies. The very image of the khaki clad explorer with pith helmet and rifle comes from this period, nearly spanning the entirety of the 19th Century. Dr.David Livingstone, who was, following Sir Richard Francis Burton before him, the most popular of the explorers of the Dark Continent, was lost and presumed dead by some. All the British led expeditions to find him ended in failure but American newspaper tycoon James Gordon Bennett Jr put journalist adventurer Stanley on the job, which was kept secret, at first. The most familiar story has Stanley finding Livingstone and uttering the famous quote, "Dr Livingstone, I presume?"

As the book Into Africa reveals, the details of the story make it all the more interesting. I haven't finished it yet, but Stanley is a mere few hundred miles from Livingstone where my bookmark is currently tucked. So far, I have learned much more about both men, and even more reasons to respect and be amazed at the men who braved such exploration. Between the insects and the rigors of malaria and other forms of fever, including elephentiasis, it reminds me of what I do appreciate about our times. Probably the most enlightening is what is revealed about the two men themselves. Livingstone was a missionary, literally a man devoted to 'spreading the word', yet he also enjoyed the carnal delights Africa had to offer as regularly as available. Stanley, usually portrayed as the stalwart American hero good guy, appears to have actually been quite an asshole on many occasions. His view of the African porters trudging his gear through miles of jungle and other treacherous terrain was generally disdainful and often abusive. He is the only explorer I have ever read of being disrespectful to Sidi Bombay, the best known guide who worked with Burton, Speke and just about every other major African explorer of the 19th Century. Stanley, according to Dugard's book, had a checkered past as an explorer before the Livingstone expedition, once betraying a male colleague to a gang rape in Turkey to save his own ass. Throughout this book, one sees a Stanley going through several bouts of malarial hell and other fevers without much grace. To be fair, most people would likely not show their best side under those conditions, but much of Stanley's bad behavior occurs in between fevers when his wits were apparently clear. Admittedly, I haven't finished the book yet, so a redemption through revelation may yet happen to Stanley, but so far he's often a class A jerk. Still, I'm enjoying this read very much, as the details make it all the more textured and colorful. I must also note that there is a school of thought among some Brit writers that require the trashing of Americans and an American expedition finding Livingstone after so many British expeditions failed, during the height of Brit reputation for exploration, is rather embarrassing.

I recommend Into Africa to any fan of real life adventure and would like to see a movie based upon it. At one time, Robert Redford was reportedly interested in the story, but I haven't heard much about that since it was reported Brad Pitt was doing Lost City of Z. What a double feature that would make!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

New LCL Website Coming Soon

I figured after a few years, it's time to have an actual website.

I have a Lulu shop page, and Yahoo Groups pages, plus an LCL Facebook page. But it's been a few years since '' -- which I lost because I obtained it in the 'Olden Days' of and they wouldn't let me take it for less than $300. It now belongs to a guy in Korea. He can kiss my ass if he thinks I'm paying him a dime to get it back. Most likely it will be at my web hosting space on Yahoo, presently occupied by I will let you all know when the revamp happens and it's up as a full-fledged LCL website, where you can see pages dedicated to the authors and their works, an online form of my old and once popular magazine and purchase ephemera such as tee shirts, mugs and the like. I'm actually quite energized to get this going again!

Right now the cafe is closing, so it's off to B&N then home where I plan to make another posting tonight... See you in a little while...

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Wonder of the Worlds Trilogy

For those who are new to LCL, I would like to direct you to Sesh Heri's amazing trilogy.

Wonder of the Worlds
is the first book and it has received many positive reviews since its release in early 2006. It was featured at the International Tesla Conference in Zurich and was the best selling book at the 2006 AUP 'Ancient Science & Modern Secrets Conference' where the author was the most popular speaker. The story follows Nikola Tesla, Mark Twain and a young Harry Houdini on a journey to Mars in 1893 to retrieve a stolen synthetic crystal which the emperor of the Red Planet intends to use in his conquest of Earth. This is a science fiction fantasy adventure certain to entertain steampunk fans as well...

Metamorphosis is the darker second act.

It is 1915 and Houdini has become the famous escape artist we all know today. Together with Jack London, a young naval officer named Chester Nimitz, and Nikola Tesla, Houdini goes up against Martian agents on Earth who are being manipulated by a terrible and powerful foe called the NYMZA, tyrannical beings from another dimension. Romance springs up between Houdini and Charmian London in this one, as it did in real life. Together, Houdini and Charmian encounter the devastating visions of a future dominated by the mysterious time-bending, planet-destroying device known as 'The Bell'...

The Lost Pleiad brings the trilogy to a wondrous and thrilling climax as Nikola Tesla returns center stage in the search for Amelia Earhart whose secret mission was far more astounding than anyone would ever imagine.

Tesla and Marconi bring their incredible technology into the search to face off against the Martians one last time as the Nazis begin to wreak havoc in the world...

The Wonder of the Worlds Trilogy is a must read! The first book is now only 99 cents. You can get the entire trilogy for $10, all at Amazon Kindle. And don't forget, you don't need a Kindle Reader to read Kindle books -- the Kindle software can be downloaded FREE at Amazon...

Look at some of the reviews:

"It was a great pleasure for me to encounter the novel Wonder of the Worlds by Sesh Heri, which creatively incorporates these themes into an interplanetary thriller involving amazing escapades of Mark Twain, Harry Houdini, and Nikola Tesla."

"Throw Mark Twain, Nikola Tesla and Harry Houdini into a fictional plot involving a nineteenth century voyage to Mars and chances are the result will delight anyone who, like me, has a penchant for pulp SF..."

"A truly outstanding book! You will have a hard time putting it down -- It's that good!"

"History and imagination collide into the most fun read I've ever had!"
-- DAVID HATCHER CHILDRESS, Adventures Unlimited Press

"I loved it!"
-- GREG BISHOP, author of 'Project Beta' and 'Weird California'

Give this trilogy a serious look. Read the first book for a mere 99 cents and see for yourself...

Raiders and Tintin

Don't forget this is the 30th anniversary of Raiders of the Lost Ark.
One of my best memories is seeing a sneak preview at the old Crest cinema in San Bernardino a couple of months before the general release. The Crest was the theater in which the original King Kong was tested before an audience in 1933, so there was some stellar adventure history there to begin with. I attended the Raiders sneak with my dad and there were only three other people in the theater, one of them a guy in my filmmaking club. Spielberg's last film had been 1941, his major (and only, I think) flop, and they were being rather close to vest with this movie. We knew from the rolling stone ball moment that this was gonna be a great movie. I remember driving my friends crazy with urging them to go see this movie. I still watch it once or twice a year.

It's fitting that Spielberg is releasing The Adventures of Tintin this year, and it looks like a lot of fun. I am usually opposed to CGI-reliant movies, that is I really dislike when CGI serves as primary image during action moments when live action would have fit better. However, if the entire movie is CGI, that can be OK because it's simply the latest form of animation. I have always liked Sky Captain, for example, because it was promoted as a digital-set and location movie and it looked good. Anyway, I think the best uses for CGI are these: to be used as matte paintings were originally used, to enhance visuals in a subtle way; and when the visual style of the material is so unique or recognizably part of its success that it would actually disappoint to see depicted any other way. This is the category in which falls The Adventures of Tintin.

Herge's Tintin has a distinct look that is a primary reason people recognize it instantly. To merely put actors in costume just wouldn't do the movie justice. Remember the Popeye movie with Robin Williams? Doing Tintin all CGI is the only way to go. Check out the trailer, if you haven't seen it, and I think you'll agree. I'm really looking forward to The Adventures of Tintin...

More to follow...

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Comic Con 2011

Once again, LCL will be represented at the San Diego International Comic Con, starting in just a little over a month from now. This will be the seventh year I have attended with my entourage, and the fourth year attending as a professional in the publishing industry and media.
In 2004, Hollywood had already invaded, but since then its imprint has grown a bit exponentially. This has generally been received with mixed review for the comics enthusiasts see an encroachment on their event that was never intended. However, the explosive interest Hollywood has given to comic book characters has indeed been a boon to the comics industry. Still it remains a double-edged sword for many. As far as the Comic Con is concerned, the down side is the crowding. Also, why are television shows like The Office represented at a convention primarily founded upon a comic book theme with a heavy support from fantasy and horror and adventure media? Another legitimate gripe is the heavier presence of the gaming industry each year. Many argue they should have their own con, as many argue that Hollywood should simply establish a new movie or 'media' con. The worst example of the Hollywood impact on the San Diego Comic Con resulted from last year's Twilight event which resulted in thousands of die-hard comic and fantasy fan attendees not able to obtain tickets because thousands of teen girls had scooped them up early for a one hour event on one day of the Con. A Hollywood event promoting a non-comic movie sequel preventing thousands who would have attended all four days (or at least two) pissed off a lot of people. Add to that this year's new draconian ticket policies for professional attendees and you have even more dissatisfaction with an event other cities are already aggressively seeking to take away from San Diego.

I hope San Diego makes the necessary changes to improve the situation and keep the Comic Con. Anaheim wants it badly and many of us think the Hollywood influence will seduce the Con administrators to move it closer to L.A., which would suck. Like myself, I know many attendees who would not go to the event if it moved to Anaheim. It just wouldn't be the same and it would be even more Hollywood, being closer to the studios and their personnel. Who knows? Many of us publishers and writers might get bumped so that more badges could be given to movie industry folks. Regardless of this bit of aggravation, I know we will have a good time. I will attend with a smaller entourage this year, but that's better than not going.
I must caveat that with the possibility that this could be the last year we go in a capacity other than directly promoting a media project, a la Secret of the Amazon Queen next year.
As we draw nearer to the Con, I'll be making more comments here. I like to put the word out that any LCL readers and fans are welcome to join us downtown in the evenings. Last year we met up with a couple of LCL readers, and the year before with an LCL friend from Germany. We can be found at Tilted Kilt or Hooters or some Con night event.
More to follow...

Monday, June 13, 2011


Yes, it is still true! I will be directing the film adaptation of the E.A.Guest novel from LCL. Barron Entertainment and Lost Amazon Motion Pictures are the producers...

Presently, the producers at Barron have me directing a documentary this summer. SOTAQ will begin pre-production simultaneously, specifically storyboarding and production art, as well as costume design. As that progresses, I will post samples here to give you a peek. The documentary is being produced for festival and cable distribution then DVD. The producer has a relationship with HBO so cross your fingers it appears there!

SOTAQ will be filmed on a sound stage in San Diego, on location in Louisiana (Yes, believe it or not there are jungles there that look like South America!), and B roll will be shot in Peru or Brazil. I am also excited to reveal that we will be shooting practical visual effects -- that means miniatures, NOT CGI! Actually, there will be some CGI, but only to enhance certain visuals, not to serve as primary imagery. My casting director and I have begun a list of casting targets -- and you'll recognize names on that list.

I will share one little secret: Several months back, I met with a particular actress who is causing quite a stir in a blockbuster comedy currently playing in theaters. A role in SOTAQ has been enhanced especially for her and she loves the script! She wants to be in the movie and her agent/manager wants her to do the movie. When we ink the deal with her, I'll reveal who it is...

For those who have read the book, the movie is clearly the same basic tale but with a few changes. First, in order to keep the budget under control, a major subplot from the book has been replaced. I am VERY pleased with this change. Also, the period has been updated just a tad: the movie will take place in 1909 and have a real steampunk flavor, in certain regards. Yes, there will be airships and biplanes! With those come a couple of cameos you may find amusing...

I don't want to say too much right now, but keep checking in here. I will be posting more regularly!

LCL Is BACK! With New Low Prices!

Hey all!

I've been away doing other projects but I am back!

LCL Publishing has gone ALL DIGITAL! What does that mean? Well, all new and prior releases are primarily available at in Kindle format, with bestselling titles becoming available in print-on-demand. If you do not have a Kindle Reader device, no worries -- you do NOT have to buy one. Amazon lets you download the Kindle Reader program for FREE so that you can enjoy Kindle books on your own PC, iPad, laptop or whatever device is your preference. FREE! That means you can read Kindle books without spending money for yet another device.

So, out of respect to the reader in these tough times, LCL is continuing to march on into the future by REDUCING PRICES of our titles -- in ALL our imprints -- to stay in line with the market place. Check out the NEW LOW PRICES available NOW:

WONDER OF THE WORLDS by Sesh Heri -- 99 cents!
METAMORPHOSIS by Sesh Heri -- $4.99
THE LOST PLEIAD by Sesh Heri -- $3.99
by Richard Senate -- 99 cents!
by E.A. Guest & F Marion Crawford -- 99 cents!

Also the NEW novel from Walter Bosley
(LCL's top selling title this spring)

Look for MORE exciting new titles to come!

I can't tell you how excited I am with this new approach. Our books have taken off at Amazon Kindle, selling better than ever before. if there's any of the above titles you haven't read yet, please check it out at Amazon.

Look for more regular posts here as there is much excitement happening at LCL. The feature film of E.A.Guest's SECRET OF THE AMAZON QUEEN is being produced by Barron Entertainment and will go into production later this year!

More to follow...