Archives for February 2012

The Sounds of District 12 (and the Capitol, too)

It’s been an exciting week for Hunger Games movie news. New images are appearing, and merchandising, most of which makes my skin crawl, is really going wild. But for me, the big news revolves around music. From Grammy shout-outs to the release of the first official video and two more songs from the soundtrack (as well as the complete official soundtrack list), this week may not make the mockingjays fall silent, but it has provided some very interesting food (er, music?) for thought. Join me after the jump for some thoughts on these very intriguing musical developments and what the The Hunger Games has to do with the loss of one very beautiful voice. [Read more…]

Free EBook from James Owen: Drawing out the Dragons

I have invested a good portion of my reading life the past year to catching up with the series of Inklings adventures penned by James Owen. The six books are known as The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica and they reward all effort. That being said, they require a lot of effort just to follow the surface meaning.

I cannot begin to explain or discuss it here — let’s leave it at my confession of finding it the most convoluted and bizarre yet challenging and engaging narrative I have ever read — but I know many HogPro readers are also Owen junkies (out there. Christina?), so I rush to tell you that he has made his book Drawing Out The Dragons: A Meditation on Art, Destiny, and the Power of Choice, $4.99 at Amazon (Kindle only), free as an eBook or pdf to all comers. The offer was for one day only but Owen extended the book’s availability for a few more days. Enjoy!

2012 Potter Conferences: An Unprecedented Menu of Options

Wow! There are Eight (8) Harry Potter conferences in 2012 that a simple Google search turns up. I assume that there are several more I haven’t heard of, though this lot is a mind-boggling set. I have listed them after the jump in chronological order for lack of an easier parameter; the set covers the complete spectrum from fandom madness blowouts to egghead academic conference, from private college affairs to a wide-open totally online smorgasbord, from adventures in the United Kingdom to Universal Studios to University student centers in the States…

Really, there should be something here (below the jump) for everyone! Enjoy the surfing and please share in the comments box the conferences you know about that I have overlooked. [Read more…]

10 Questions for Gary Gregg, Author of the Remnant Chronicles

February’s 10 Question interview with a living author of books we Hogwarts Professors think our like-minded readers will enjoy is with Gary L. Gregg, author of The Sporran and The Iona Conspiracy, the first books in The Remnant Chronicles. Though this interview took place online rather than in person, I’ve met the man and can testify that Prof Gregg is as winsome and challenging in person as his novels’ characters are engaging and memorable. Which is saying something.

On to the interview!

1. Prof. Gregg, you’re a noted political scientist, head of the McConnell Center at the University of Louisville, and the author of books on topics as varied as the life of George Washington, the genius of the Electoral College, and the representational nature of the Presidency. That’s all well and good — frankly, I’m fascinated — but it certainly isn’t the usual CV for a fantasy fiction author. How do you get from your public life to your fictional world — or is the latter really another, neglected aspect of the political scientist?

    In many ways, my formal training as a political scientist couldn’t be further from my life as a fantasy writer.  The only connection, I think, might be my interest in political ideas and the history of political thought, the central themes of which have often been explored in novels, poetry, and the theatre.  I grew up as a non-reader, really, and have had a lot of catching up to do.  Over the years of trying to “catch up,” I have become convinced, with Napoleon, that “imagination rules the world.”  It is story that really shapes us into who we are and knowing that makes the facts and figures of political science seem not only less interesting, but much less important.  I became a fantasy writer because the genre became what I wanted to read and what I thought young people, in particular, needed to read.  I hoped to strike a few imaginations in the wider world out there and I hope I have done at least that.

    [Read more…]

    News Flash! Twilight Movie Director Addresses Critics

    Why do people hate Twilight? The movie director says it’s because the books and films are about women’s issues and are all told from a woman’s point of view. Can you say ‘Misogyny”? Oh, yeah.

    The Breaking Dawn Blu-Ray DVD was released with a commentary track and movie director Bill Condon let fly his explanation for the love-to-hate-it phenomenon among critics: “This series is about things women care about and has a woman at the center,” he says. “So there are people who just stay outside of it and mock it.”

    The review (Hat Tip, Deborah!) from Spokane’s local paper had this jewel as well:

    [Read more…]