Here it is, Chapter 5, the Most Likely Final Chapter in what has turned out essentially to be a series about how I’m gearing up for the publicity push, but isn’t actually publicity as such. Also, I realized that I’ve been teasing the Zombiepalooza Radio snafu all week without actually delivering on those teases. So drumroll, please! Here is the story of my scheduled April 17 interview on Jackie Chin’s zombie radio show:
- There were technical difficulties.
- She accidentally double-booked me and another guest.
- We have rescheduled, probably for May 1st.
And that’s it.
“I cleaned my balls for that?”
Anyway, I also have been talking here and there about a Con unlike any other, so let’s get down to it. Small and intimate, yet full of genius, The Portland CthulhuCon (or CthulhuCon PDX, for those who enjoy TLAs) bills itself as “The Only Convention That Understands.” And holy shit, does it understand: Knowing that up until last year, when it was the H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival and CthulhuCon, many attendees couldn’t do a Hermione Granger and attend a film and an author reading or gaming session at the same time.
So what did Gwen and Bruce Callahan, the primum movens of the Festival, do to make life even better for their Lovecraft-hungry fiends and friends? They split the event into a film festival and a Con for writers, readers, and gamers! The Con is this weekend; the film fest is in October. Everybody’s happy!
Okay, maybe not everybody.
I will be arriving in time for the middle of the VIP party on Friday night, then going back to (possibly, I’m not saying for sure) to smoke exactly one bushel and two pecks of salutary marijuana with my very good friend who will remain nameless but knows who he is. (Or, if he has been smoking the goods lately, possibly not.)
Saturday is my day for contributing to a panel called “Dracula vs. Cthulhu.” Here we will compare and contrast HPL’s landmark story “The Call of Cthulhu” to Bram Stoker’s masterpiece in terms of style, substance, and historical influences. I cannot wait. Check this out:
A discussion of the relationship between Lovecraft’s “The Call of Cthulhu” and Bram Stoker’s classic “Dracula.” Both stories are told through diary entries, news articles, letters, and interviews with other people, but there’s more to it than that. Lovecraft wrote on the cusp between literary movements. With one foot in the Gothic past and one foot in the post-war future to come, Lovecraft created a unique blend between the Gothic literary tradition of the 1800s and the monster tradition of the modern era. This panel discusses his work within the literary framework of Gothic, while at the same time, examining the groundwork he laid for modern authors.
I hope we’ll also be settling several longstanding literary debates.
I will, if possible, be videoing the panel (as well as the other one I’m on, mentioned below) and will post the video on Monday.
First thing Sunday morning there is the (in)famous “Carbload for Cthulhu,” during which authors and artists massacre a couple of boxes of Voodoo Donuts while talking about and (please, Old Gods) selling a few eldritch and perhaps even horripilating items. I am bringing 5 copies of Deadtown Abbey (which is explicitly Lovecraftian) and 5 of Reviva Las Vegas!, which isn’t explicitly HPL-related but shares the Old Gent’s dismal cosmic worldview.
Right after the carbload, the food-drunk panelists (including me) will discuss “Creating a Mythos”:
One of the mainstays of Lovecraft’s legacy has long been the Mythos he created. Many authors, both before and after Lovecraft, have created a Mythos of their own: Pugmire’s Sesqua Valley, Chambers’s King in Yellow stories, Barron’s Old Leech universe, Dunsany’s Pegana, Clark Ashton Smith’s Hyperborea. Some have outgrown their creators and have opened their doors to many authors to contribute. What is the allure of a Mythos? What are the benefits of writing in one? What are the pitfalls?
And what exactly is the sitch regarding alligators and giant scorpions?
Also on Sunday I’ll be giving an author reading and I am psyched. I will be reading what I think is one of my very best stories, a (I think) hilarious Innsmouth take on MadMen called “MudMen.” Roofs will be raised, &c., &c. I will post video from it on Monday at the latest. No, no, please, I should be the one thanking YOU. (N.B.: I will be reading on the same stage as Jason V. Fucking Brock. If you don’t know who he is, look him up. He and his wife, Sunni, are the loveliest dark-arts aficionados you’ll ever meet.
And don’t even get me started on their Michael Kors sacrifice robes. SO JELLY.
Why in the name of Yog-Sothoth am I telling you all this?
Well, number one, don’t take The Keeper and Guardian of the Gate’s name in vain. Number two, CthulhuCon PDX is the kick-off of my book publicity efforts. These blog posts are the real start, I suppose, but you may notice that they’re been revving up for the Big Event as opposed to any actual event, as I said above. But CthulhuCon is where I start distributing my publicity materials and pushing my website and its huge samples of all of my books.
Did I mention that I have some new books out? Oh, I did. Um, cool then.
Let the Stygian darkness descend and let’s have some fun!