December 22, 2012

For your Holiday reading list!

Book Club Reminder: NO December meeting!
If you plan to attend the January meeting of SF&F Literati, you may want to use some of that holiday cash for a copy of the January and February discussion titles:
January 28, 2013: Leviathan Wakes, by Hugo Award Nominee James A. Corey, and available from Barnes & Noble Booksellers.
February 25, 2013: The Name of the Wind, by ConQuesT 44 GoH Patrick Rothfuss, and available from Barnes & Noble Booksellers.

Please also note that the KaCSFFS Blog's Reviews and Commentary Page always welcomes book reviews!

Leviathan Wakes
Overview from Barnes & Noble:
Humanity has colonized the solar system - Mars, the Moon, the Asteroid Belt and beyond - but the stars are still out of our reach.

Jim Holden is XO of an ice miner making runs from the rings of Saturn to the mining stations of the Belt. When he and his crew stumble upon a derelict ship, The Scopuli, they find themselves in possession of a secret they never wanted. A secret that someone is willing to kill for - and kill on a scale unfathomable to Jim and his crew. War is brewing in the system unless he can find out who left the ship and why.

Detective Miller is looking for a girl. One girl in a system of billions, but her parents have money and money talks. When the trail leads him to The Scopuli and rebel sympathizer Holden, he realizes that this girl may be the key to everything.

Holden and Miller must thread the needle between the Earth government, the Outer Planet revolutionaries, and secretive corporations - and the odds are against them. But out in the Belt, the rules are different, and one small ship can change the fate of the universe. 

The Name of the Wind
Kingkiller Chronicles Series, Book #1
Overview from Barnes & Noble:
"I have stolen princesses back from sleeping barrow kings. I burned down the town of Trebon. I have spent the night with Felurian and left with both my sanity and my life. I was expelled from the University at a younger age than most people are allowed in. I tread paths by moonlight that others fear to speak of during day. I have talked to Gods, loved women, and written songs that make the minstrels weep.

"You may have heard of me."

So begins the tale of Kvothe: from his childhood in a troupe of traveling players, to years spent as a near-feral orphan in a crime-riddled city, to his daringly brazen yet successful bid to enter a difficult and dangerous school of magic. In these pages you will come to know Kvothe as a notorious magician, an accomplished thief, a masterful musician, and an infamous assassin. The Name Of The Wind . . . reveals the truth behind Kvothe's legend.

The riveting first-person narrative of a young man who grows to be the most notorious magician his world has ever seen. 

The Name of the Wind . . . transports readers into the body and mind of a wizard. It is a high-action novel written with a poet's hand, a powerful coming-of-age story of a magically gifted young man, told through his eyes.

COVER IMAGES: Many thanks to Barnes & Noble Booksellers, for the cover images for these two books. The cover image for Leviathan Wakes is from its sale page. The image for The Name of the Wind is from its sale page.

December 15, 2012

December 21: What Time will the World End?

By David Sooby
I was talking with a Kaxfan recently who asked: What time, according to the Mayan calendar which supposedly predicts the end of the world on December 21, 2012, will the world end?

A bit of research led me to various spoil-sports trying to assure me that the calendar in question is actually the Mesoamerican Long Count calendar (hereafter MLC), not specifically the Mayan calendar; that the Mayans did not envision an apocalypse coinciding with the end of a calendar era; that the "end of the world" concept was a New Agey meme invented by one Michael D. Coe in his 1966 book The Maya; and that Coe's date was actually December 24.

I also ran across some arguments over the date which pointed out that the MLC calendar does not include leap days, so the calendar would have become progressively more and more out of alignment with our modern, Julian calendar as the centuries passed since the creation of the MLC calendar.

Pedants spouting all this historical and calendric technobabble completely and utterly miss the point! They obviously fail to realize that the importance of identifying an end-of-the-world date (and time), regardless of how solid or flimsy the reasoning, is to give an excuse for throwing an end-of-the-world party!

But to come back to the question posed above: The end of the current era of the MLC calendar is the winter solstice of 2012, which occurs on December 21. Thus we can ignore any misalignment of the MLC calendar and the current Julian calendar. Solstices occur at a particular instant in time, and this year it will be at 11:11 GMT. That would be, unfortunately, a rather non-party time of 5:11 AM in U.S. Central Time, including the Kansas City area.

So, for those wishing to throw a party coinciding with the December 21 millennialist beliefs, I would suggest a "We survived the end of the world!" party on Friday evening, December 21. And not an actual "The world is going to end tomorrow" party on Thursday, December 20. After all, if the ancient Mayans had envisioned a five-day work week and the concept of a "weekend," they surely would have been happy to move their celebration of the solstice forward a day, to enjoy a three-day weekend!

Please also note: even if the world does not end, there will be No SF&F Literati meeting Dec. 24!

PHOTO CREDIT: The Mayan Apocalypse image is from The Seattle Salmon website--thanks, guys!

December 09, 2012

Holiday meeting features Visual Feast Art Show!

December meeting has a Holiday theme!
Whether you celebrate Solstice, Hanukka, Christmas, Kwanzaa, Winter Break, the Mayan Apocalypse, or all of the above, come join us to "get your merry on" at the December KaCSFFS meeting.

Who: All KAXFEN
What: December KaCSFFS Meeting and Holiday Visual Feast
Where: The Writers Place, 3607 Pennsylvania, Kansas City, MO 64111-2820
When: 6:30 p.m., Saturday December 15, 2012 (Art show setup and possible Board Meeting 5:30 p.m.)
Why: Because it's our holiday thing.
How: With as much festivity as possible!

Food and Festivities
Bring your favorite holiday treats to share with your friends! Does your family have a favorite cookie recipe? Bring some to share. If your tastes run more to liquid treats, those are welcome too!
Some KAXFEN like to exchange gifts at the meeting, but no one is required to do so.
Likewise, some like to don a holiday costume for the occasion. If you enjoy wearing costumes, please wear yours!

Last Chance!
ConQuesT Memberships go up December 31! This meeting is your last chance to buy your membership in person at the discounted rate. You also can buy them from the ConQuesT website, of course!
 
The Holiday Visual Feast
Townley: Inspired by a Star Formation
Artwork makes a great gift! Here's your chance to buy beautiful fantasy or space-inspired artwork directly from the artists themselves! KaCSFFS and the ConQuesT Art Show sponsor the event. Five artists have reserved space this year.  

Introducing Grace Townley! Grace is a local artist whose painterly oil astronomicals caught ConQuesT Art Show Director Jan Gephardt's eye at the Art Westport show last September. This show will be her first experience with science fiction fandom, so please make her feel welcome! She brings a nice variety of her prints, reproduced from her paintings.

Mayo: Jazzdragon
We also are happy to welcome back four artists familiar to KAXFEN.
Each will bring favorite images, as well as new creations.
Stein: Bad Boys

Rachael Mayo returns with colorful and imaginative prints and originals featuring her wonderful fantasy creatures--including the ever-popular Jazzdragons--in a wide range of sizes and prices. See more of her artwork on DeviantART and Elfwood. Please note: KaCSFFS has received late word that Rachael will not be able to attend because of an unanticipated scheduling conflict.

Allison Stein frequently brings an array of her whimsical and often humorous mixed-media small originals (some watercolors, some on small canvases), prints, and bookmarks, all priced affordably. See her artwork on her Etsy store site, and on her website.

Synk: Oriental Delight
Lucy A. Synk can't be with us in person, having recently moved to Michigan (Jan Gephardt is acting as her agent). She sends longtime favorite prints and a collection of new mini-prints of recent and familiar fantasy images at affordable prices. See some of her paintings and prints on her Lucy Synk Fantasy Art website.

Gephardt: Coming Through
Jan Sherrell Gephardt also returns with her paper sculptures. She now has two limited editions of fantasy images, as well as one-of-a-kind originals. Her limited edition image Coming Through will be seen in public for the first time at the Visual Feast. See her work online at her DeviantART page, as well as in frequent features on her Artdog Observations blog.

PHOTO CREDITS: sources for the holiday montage are as follows: The photo of the Menorah is from the Fantom-XP website. The Winter Break image is from Examiner.com. The Stonehenge Solstice image is from Kimberly Snyder's blog. The Kwanzaa table photo is from The Official Kwanzaa Website. The Christmas lights and ball photo are from the Marbella Family Fun website. The Mayan Apocalypse image is from The Seattle Salmon website. The images of the artwork were all provided by the artists for our publicity.

November 29, 2012

Laser Rangers 2012 December Meeting

Movies You May Have Missed this Year

Date: December 1, 2012
Time: 4:45pm (Fhanish time)
Place: David Sooby’s home theater with 51-inch Samsung HDTV, a 5.1 Surround Sound Dolby Digital sound system, a full set of audiophile-grade speakers, and brand new seating for about 15 people without crowding.
Captain Laser: NOBODY (We've got no captain! It's going to be a fun ride!)
Food Theme: Pizza & Salad (Bring your own or bring to share!)
Dress Theme: Turn of the 20th Century or Vamperic (NOT Twilight!!)

See more at the Laser Rangers Website. 


Short YouTube features will precede both features!

Hugo

(2011, Appox. 128 minutes); Starring J Asa Butterfield, Ben Kingsley, Chloë Grace Moretz, and Sacha Baron Cohen;

Set in 1930s Paris, an orphan who lives in the walls of a train station is wrapped up in a mystery involving his late father and an automaton.

Check out this awesome trailer!

Special Note: Johnny Depp produced 'Hugo. 

~~~~~
During the break we will kick back and relax as we feast on pizza and salad. Please bring feel free to bring your own pizza and drinks to share or not. It's all good.
~~~~~

There will be more amazing shorts between dinner and our main feature.  


Dark Shadows
MAIN FEATURE!
(2012, 113 minutes); Starring Johnny Depp, Michelle Pfeiffer, Helena Bonham Carter, Bella Heathcote
 
An imprisoned vampire, Barnabas Collins, is set free and returns to his ancestral home, where his dysfunctional descendants are in need of his protection.


A truly fantastic remake of the 1960s TV show. Check out the movie's trailer here!


The home of the Laser Rangers is located about two miles north of the Kansas Speedway, NW of the intersection of I-70 and I-435 on the Kansas side of the Greater Kansas City area.

IMAGE CREDITS: The information and movie poster images for all of these shows come from the invaluable IMDB or the movie's  respected distrubutors. 
The movie screen frame image used for the Laser Rangers contact information is courtesy of Psychology Today Online. Many thanks to these websites!

November 26, 2012

Scalzi's Star Trek Sendup, and a Future Selection

SF&F Literati meet TONIGHT!

Where: 2nd floor of the Barnes & Nobles Booksellers at Oak Park Mall in Overland Park.
When: Nov 26, 2012, 7:00 p.m.
What we're discussing: Redshirts by John Scalzi

Overview:
Ensign Andrew Dahl has just been assigned to the Universal Union Capital Ship Intrepid, flagship of the Universal Union since the year 2456. It’s a prestige posting, and Andrew is thrilled all the more to be assigned to the ship’s Xenobiology laboratory.

Life couldn’t be better…until Andrew begins to pick up on the fact that (1) every Away Mission involves some kind of lethal confrontation with alien forces, (2) the ship’s captain, its chief science officer, and the handsome Lieutenant Kerensky always survive these confrontations, and (3) at least one low-ranked crew member is, sadly, always killed.

Not surprisingly, a great deal of energy below decks is expendedon avoiding, at all costs, being assigned to an Away Mission. Then Andrew stumbles on information that completely transforms his and his colleagues’ understanding of what the starship Intrepid really is…and offers them a crazy, high-risk chance to save their own lives.

Please note that the KaCSFFS Blog's Reviews and Commentary Page always welcomes book reviews!

What's Next? 
No meeting in December--our regular "fourth Monday" falls on Christmas Eve this year, when we expect most of our members to be busy elsewhere! But we'll be back in January.

Order now for holiday reading! Our January Selection is Leviathan Wakes by Hugo Nominee James A. Corey, available from Barnes & Noble Booksellers. We'll discuss this book Jan 28, 2013--same time, same place!


Leviathan Wakes Overview:
Humanity has colonized the solar system - Mars, the Moon, the Asteroid Belt and beyond - but the stars are still out of our reach.

Jim Holden is XO of an ice miner making runs from the rings of Saturn to the mining stations of the Belt. When he and his crew stumble upon a derelict ship, The Scopuli, they find themselves in possession of a secret they never wanted. A secret that someone is willing to kill for - and kill on a scale unfathomable to Jim and his crew. War is brewing in the system unless he can find out who left the ship and why.

Detective Miller is looking for a girl. One girl in a system of billions, but her parents have money and money talks. When the trail leads him to The Scopuli and rebel sympathizer Holden, he realizes that this girl may be the key to everything.

Holden and Miller must thread the needle between the Earth government, the Outer Planet revolutionaries, and secretive corporations - and the odds are against them. But out in the Belt, the rules are different, and one small ship can change the fate of the universe.

COVER IMAGES: Both images of book covers are courtesy of Barnes & Noble Booksellers. The Redshirts image is from its sale page, and the Leviathan Wakes image is from its sale page. Many thanks for both, and for allowing our group to meet at the Overland Park location!



November 14, 2012

Annual Thanksgiving Feast-Meeting, plus a New Review!

New Review!
Check out David Sooby's review of the new James Bond movie, Skyfall, on our Reviews Page!

Are you ready to Feast?
OK all of you turkey-hungry KAXFEN, it is that time of year for the annual KaCSFFS Thanksgiving dinner.

We try to get all of the current and past members of our fannish family together to celebrate.

Late news update: "Cards Against Humanity" will be played during the social period at this meeting. if you like this game and have a deck, please bring it and come to play. If you don't know about this game but are curious, here's your chance to learn more if you're interested!

When: Nov 17 at 6:30 pm
Where: The Writers Place, 3607 Pennsylvania Ave., Kansas City, MO 64111

There will be two KaCSFFS turkeys. The rest is pot-luck.

Please let Diana Bailey know how many in your party will be coming, and what type of dish you will be bringing to share. Plastic tableware, napkins, plates, etc. are provided. Drinks are on your own.


KAXFEN stand in line for dinner at the 2010 meeting.
Here are categories of foods we need:
Salad: be creative! There's a wide range of possibilities.
Fruit or vegetable traybut remember: KAXFEN DON'T EAT BROCCOLI. This is the voice of experience speaking.
Potato or rice dish--This includes sweet potatoes, in case you wondered.
Dressing
Gravy--No, it's not automatic with the turkey, this year!
Cranberry anything--from relish to fancy breads. Which brings us to:
Bread/rolls/ butter--a Thanksgiving staple
Desserts--traditional or innovative, KAXFEN never pass up dessert!

PHOTO CREDITS: Many thanks to the Inhabitant website for the cornucopia photo. We also recommend this site for news and insights on environmental issues, "green" design, and lots more. The photo of the food line in 2010 is courtesy of Ty Gephardt.

This post was updated Nov. 15, 2012.

October 27, 2012

Laser Rangers 2012 November Meeting

Marvel Superheroes II (Special Thanksgiving Edition)

Date: November 3, 2012
Time: 4:45pm (Fhanish time)
Place: David Sooby’s home theater with 51-inch Samsung HDTV, a 5.1 Surround Sound Dolby Digital sound system, a full set of audiophile-grade speakers, and brand new seating for about 15 people without crowding.
Captain Laser: Ken Keller
Food Theme: Thanksgiving Dinner
Dress Theme: Fine attire, Classy dress or leftover Halloween costumes (super hero themed please, but not required)

See more at the Laser Rangers Website. 


Short features will precede our main features!

X-Men: First Class


(2011, Appox. 132 minutes); Starring James McAvoy, Micheal Fassbender, Rose Byrne, and Kevin Bacon 

In 1962, the United States government enlists the help of Mutants with superhuman abilities to stop a malicious dictator who is determined to start world war III.

Check out this awesome trailer!










~~~~~
During the break we will have our annual MOVIE MEETING where in we will plan out next year's movie schedule. This will be a longer dinner break than normal so we can all enjoy wonderful food prepared by the Laser Rangers and come up with the best possible movie agenda for the year to come.
~~~~~

There will be more amazing shorts between dinner and our main feature.


Captain America: The First Avenger

MAIN FEATURE!
(2011, 124 minutes); Starring Chris Evans, Sebastian Stan, Hayley Atwell, Tommy Lee Jones & Hugo Weaving
 
After being deemed unfit for military service, Steve Rogers volunteers for a top secret research project that turns him into Captain America, a superhero dedicated to defending USA ideals.

A truly fantastic super hero movie and the awesome trailer!







The home of the Laser Rangers is located about two miles north of the Kansas Speedway, NW of the intersection of I-70 and I-435 on the Kansas side of the Greater Kansas City area.

IMAGE CREDITS: The information and movie poster images for all of these shows come from the invaluable IMDB or the movie's  respected distrubutors. 
The movie screen frame image used for the Laser Rangers contact information is courtesy of Psychology Today Online. Many thanks to these websites!

October 18, 2012

The Haunting of the Writers Place Happens Saturday!

Who: All KAXFEN and friends are invited!
What: Monthly KaCSFFS meeting and Annual Halloween Party
When: Saturday, Oct. 20, 2012--Party setup begins 5:15, Board meeting 5:30, KaCSFFS Boo!-ness meeting begins 6:30 (Diana: "KaCSFFS Halloween party will start after the boo!-ness . . . so let's see how short we can make it!")
Where: Our usual: The Writers Place (see map link at end of post)
Why: Because it's fun!
How: In costume, of course! How else?
Sherri Dean, Ken Keller, and other
KAXFEN enjoy the food at our 2011
Halloween event.  
This from our Zombie Queen:
"Yes, indeedy, Boils and Ghouls! The rumors are true! The KaCSFFS Halloween Party is going to rise again! Bring yummies for your mummies, bats for your brats and brains for ... well... someone who needs 'em! We have the best cooks around, just don't ask what's in the food! [Editor's note: more on food, below!]

"Our special guest, the Mysterious Mystie will be hosting a terrifying game show Trick or Trivia in which one lucky winner gets to live! Yay! For those nice, quiet serial killer-who-lurks types we'll be having a special trivia contest and of course our costume contest.

"There'll also be treat bags for our younger (12 and under) fans- ya gotta plump 'em up before ya eat 'em, right? Did I say that out loud? Quick- to the buffet table!

One of the 2011 food tables.
"And in honour of our food contest I present to you RETURN OF THE MEATHEAD! So plan to meat, eat and greet as we scare up a night full of fun!

"Sin-cerely yrs, Scary Sherri"
Madame Prez notes: "Sherri is our Zombie Queen ... I mean, fearless leader for this year's activities. She has planned "stuff," and you don't want to piss off the Zombie Queen ... I mean fearless leader by not showing up! So be there, or be coffinated! (Does anybody do de-cof?)"

Regarding the Food:
Again from Madam Prez (Diana Bailey): "Bring your best spooky dish! We LOVE 'finger food,' 'eyes cream,' 'brain pudding,' 'Man-wiches,' and such. Be creative! But please, no 'knuckle sandwiches.'

James Holloman and Sherri Dean
both made fashion statements
in orange at the 2011 event.
"The Food Idea is 'People as Food.' Think, To Serve Man, or the 'Human Buffet' from Galaxina. The gory cats ... I mean categories ... will be voted on. Like, you know, well, most 'scary creative', best 'scary taste,' and as always, the winners will be determined by the voters. Voters are the attendees. That's right! You get to vote!

"Gypsy" Susan Ives
in 2011.
"I am planing on bring 'bones' and 'bloody scabs' for the buffet table. What are you bringing? Be sure to bring your own drink and ice, too.

"The Dead Will Dine! . . . But only if you contribute!"

We also can hope certain persons have exhausted their supply of puns, at least till spring!

Regarding the Costumes:
Granted, KAXFEN rarely need much of an excuse to dress in costume or put on bizarre makeup. You say there's a Zombie Walk? We're there! Hall costumes at sf cons? Well, duh. 

So during the Halloween season, the very season itself is sufficient excuse!

Tanya Holthouse and Jeff Orth portrayed the
Skellingtons in 2011.
No, if you're not into the costume thing we won't bar you at the door, and we promise not to point and laugh, either! But if you're even slightly so-inclined, this is a great place to indulge your inner child with a game of dress-up.

To help get you inspired, we've included some photos of costumes worn to last year's event. We apologize to the many KAXFEN who had superlative outfits last year, and were not portrayed here! Choices were dictated by the practical questions of which costumes this editor had managed to capture, and of those which pictures turned out the best!

But wait! 
What happened to Joel Sanderson?
We had announced some time ago that Joel Sanderson would be our special guest at this meeting.

Joel Sanderson as Gunther Dedmond on "The Basement
Sublet of Horror" on the Monster Channel.
As you may know, Joel hosts a Tuesday night horror/comedy program each week, "The Basement Sublet of Horror," on the Monster Channel. If you have not watched the Monster Channel, it might be a great idea to tune in! His show is a quirky mixture of B-movies, horror, comedy, educational videos, gladiator movies, and cooking shows.

If you are a fan who wanted to see him, we are sorry to have some bad news for you.

Unfortunately, Joel has been dealing with a number of health issues, and will be unable to present a program as scheduled. Perhaps he'll be able to join us another time. Meanwhile, we wish him the very best, and especially a swift and complete recovery! A get-well card for Joel will be available at the meeting.

One-Act Pod Plays also are due!
As announced in June and again in September, our 2012 Pod-Play contest ends Oct. 20. Turn in entries at the meeting, or email as .DOC files (there was a mail-in option as well, but the window of opportunity for that will already have closed by the time this is posted).

Once the pod-play entries have been received, they will be posted to the KAXFEN Yahoo Group within a week. We will announce on KAXFEN and in this space when and where the scripts are available to be read and voted upon by KaCSFFS members. The winner will be announced at the November meeting, November 17, 2012.

Where is The Writers Place, again?
Here's the map, in case you need it:


View Larger Map

PHOTO CREDITS: All but one of the photos in this post are by Jan S. Gephardt, taken at the Oct. 29, 2011 KaCSFFS meeting. They are available for repost with no alteration and with credit given. The lone exception is the image of Joel Sanderson in character. It is from the LJ World website, courtesy of the Lawrence Journal World.

October 08, 2012

Laser Rangers 2012 October Meeting

Lovecraft Love

We've got a triple header for you all!!

Date: October 13, 2012
Time: 4:45pm (Fhanish time)
Place: David Sooby’s home theater with 51-inch Samsung HDTV, a 5.1 Surround Sound Dolby Digital sound system, a full set of audiophile-grade speakers, and brand new seating for about 15 people without crowding.
Captain Laser: Mike McCain
Food Theme: Something HORRIBLE
Dress Theme: Halloween

See more at the Laser Rangers Website.

Short features will precede our main features!

The Call of Cthulhu


(2005, Appox. 47 minutes); Starring Matt Foyer, John Bolen, Ralph Lucas, & Chad Fifer
The film follows the story's three-part narrative construction, and it moves from the 1920s to 1908 to the 1870s and back, as the story does. The story embodies HPL's nihilistic world view, his cosmic perspective, and his sense that mankind is doomed by its own insignificance.

Check out this awesome trailer!







 

Dagon


(2001, Appox. 95 minutes); Starring Ezra Godden, Francisco Rabal, Raquel Meroño, & Macarena Gómez
A boating accident runs a young man and woman ashore in a decrepit Spanish fishing town which they should discover is in the grips of an ancient sea god and its monstrous half human offspring.

Based loosely on 'Shadow over Innsmouth'.


Check out this awesome trailer!






~~~~~
We will break for a pot luck dinner between features to discuss what we've just seen, what is coming, and more. Usually a lively conversation. You can bring what you want to share or just something for yourself.
~~~~~
There will be more amazing shorts between dinner and our main feature.


Cast a Deadly Spell


SPECIAL FEATURE!
(1991, 96 minutes); Starring Fred Ward, David Warner, Julianne Moore, & Clancy Brown
 
In a fantastical 40's where magic is used by everyone, a hard-boiled detective investigates the theft of a mystical tome.


Oh the 90s really knew how to make an awesome trailer!






The home of the Laser Rangers is located about two miles north of the Kansas Speedway, NW of the intersection of I-70 and I-435 on the Kansas side of the Greater Kansas City area.

IMAGE CREDITS: The information and movie poster images for all of these shows come from the invaluable IMDB or the movie's  respected distrubutors. 
The movie screen frame image used for the Laser Rangers contact information is courtesy of Psychology Today Online. Many thanks to these websites!

October 02, 2012

We have a Hotel! And Logos! And Books to Read! And a Game of Thrones Marathon!

The water resort part includes some outdoors and some inside.
Major announcements have been coming in like meteors in a Perseid meteor shower, recently. Here's a rundown of our top "breaking news" stories:
 
We have a Hotel!
ConQuesT, or science fiction convention, is moving to a new hotel for ConQuesT 44, held on Memorial Day Weekend, May 24-26, 2013. It is the Holiday Inn Southeast CoCo Key Resort, 9103 East 39th Street, Kansas City, MO. 

The convention room rate is $85/night (discount cutoff is May 1, 2013). The room fee includes free wi-fi, free parking, and discounted access to CoCo Key Water Resort. For more information, please see the ConQuesT website or the hotel's website.


View Larger Map  


We have Official Logos!
Not tired of it yet!

The votes are in, and we have "new" logos for KaCSFFS and ConQuesT. We will be using these on our official communications.

The new ConQuesT logo
"New" is in quote marks, however, because the KaCSFFS logo chosen by the majority of our voters is the original 1977 logo! Designed by Ken Keller and clearly still meaningful to our members, this perennial classic will continue as our "mark."

The new ConQuesT logo really is new, though! Designed last spring to be updated with new numbers as years pass, the round shape of this Keri O'Brien design should complement our KaCSFFS classic well. For creating the new logo, Keri wins a free membership to ConQuesT 44, a Certificate of Recognition, and a box of Annedore's Artisanal Chocolates or suitable alternative of her choice.

Read it by October 22, and join in!
We have Books to Read!
The SF&F Literati group has announced a new list of selections for the next four meetings. Don't wait a moment longer to get your copy of Neil Gaiman's Anansi Boys for the October 22 meeting! The group meets to discuss the book selection of the month at the Oak Park Barnes & Noble Booksellers, second floor at 7:00 p.m., on the fourth Monday of most months (No meeting in December, and 3rd Monday in May).

The Barnes & Noble Overview says of Anansi Boys:
"When Fat Charlie's dad named something, it stuck. Like calling Fat Charlie 'Fat Charlie.' Even now, twenty years later, Charlie Nancy can't shake that name, one of the many embarrassing "gifts" his father bestowed -- before he dropped dead on a karaoke stage and ruined Fat Charlie's life.

"Mr. Nancy left Fat Charlie things. Things like the tall good-looking stranger who appears on Charlie's doorstep, who appears to be the brother he never knew. A brother as different from Charlie as night is to day, a brother who's going to show Charlie how to lighten up and have a little fun . . . just like Dear Old Dad. And all of a sudden, life starts getting very interesting for Fat Charlie.

"Because, you see, Charlie's dad wasn't just any dad. He was Anansi, a trickster god, the spider-god. Anansi is the spirit of rebellion; he is able to overturn the social order, create wealth out of thin air, baffle the devil, and cheat Death himself.

"Exciting, scary, and deeply funny, ANANSI BOYS is a kaleidoscopic journey deep into myth, a wild adventure, and a fierce and unstoppable farce, as Neil Gaiman shows us where gods come from, and how to survive your family."

The rest of the lineup looks pretty good, too:
Nov 26, 2012  Redshirts by John Scalzi
(No meeting is planned for December: the 4th Monday is Christmas Eve.)
Jan 28, 2013  Leviathan Wakes by James A. Corey (Hugo Nominee)
Feb 25, 2013  The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss  (ConQuest GOH)

And we have a Game of Thrones Marathon! 
Looks as if they're going to do it after all!  The Laser Rangers have just announced they will host a special showing of Season 2, Episodes 5, 6, and 7.

Proceedings begin at 4:45 p.m., enjoying the amenities of David Sooby's home theater . To follow the food theme, ample help is on hand from the Inn at the Crossroads.

Here's an atmospheric warm-up video you may enjoy, produced by Karilene Reynolds and available via YouTube:

IMAGE CREDITS: The exterior of the Holiday Inn Southeast/CoCo Key Resort is from the hotel's website. We are indebted to Ken Keller and Keri O'Brien for their logo designs. Barnes & Noble Booksellers provided cover art for the SF&F Literati selections, and the movie screen frame image used for the Laser Rangers contact information is courtesy of Psychology Today Online. Karilene Reynolds is responsible for the video about the Game of Thrones.

September 24, 2012

Pod-Play Scripts

Pod-Play 1 Acts DUE SOON!!!! 

This is a reminder that the Pod-Play scripts will soon be due in a couple of weeks! Get them finalized and wrapped up. We're in the final mile here and it's time to give it all you've got. We're all looking forward to your final product! 

Below is a reminder of what were looking for. Thank you very much for participating. Good luck with your scripts.

Please see guidelines here:

Submit entries now!
    Pod-Play 1 Acts

    Guidelines

    • Must be Family Friendly
    • Fall within a genre we cover as a club
    • Include more than two people
    • Can be comedic, dramatic, or any tone you’d like
    • Not more than an hour long
    • Is ready by October 20, 2012 (meeting date). 
     


    This is an open topic project with endless possibilities. Some prompts are provided below to get you thinking. Have fun and enjoy this. We are also looking for voice talents. Please contact us if you are interested.


     

    Format Guidelines

    Please refer back to our July post. <Insert Link>

    Thank you for your interest and participation. We look forward to seeing what you bring and the performances that result. Good luck and start writing!


    Prompts

    • A group of people discovers a strange object
    • An out of this world party
    • A UFO lands
    • Guidelines for Alien encounters with dramatic enactments
    • Science fiction serial series take off
    • Family of psycho killers recounting “just another day.”
    • Epic Fantasy quest in 1 act
    • Time Safari
    • Colonist’s first day on a new world
    • Broken down on the galactic highway
    • Adapt a 1-act play into a science fiction, horror, or fantasy genre. 
    • Our Neighbors are Aliens
    • Our Neighbors are LARPers
    • Fantasy quest that is really just a well-played D&D game
    • Lost Time Traveler

    Photo Credits:
    Parchment by KSU:
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    Radio Presenter US CA NY Radio Clip art:

    September 15, 2012

    SF&F Literati meet September 24--Plus a New Book Review is Now Available!

    A Killer Theme this Month! Literally.
    WhereThe Oak Park Barnes & Noble Booksellers (see embedded map below!)
    When: 7:00 p.m. Monday August 27, second floor
    What
    : Discuss All You Need is Kill, by
     Hiroshi Sakurazaka, and illustrated by anime and manga graphic artist Yoshitoshi ABe.

    B&N Overview:
    L to R (Western Style). There’s one thing worse than dying. It’s coming back to do it again and again… When the alien Gitai invade, Keiji Kiriya is just one of many raw recruits shoved into a suit of battle armor and sent out to kill. Keiji dies on the battlefield, only to find himself reborn each morning to fight and die again and again. On the 158th iteration though, he sees something different, something out of place: the female soldier known as the Bitch of War. Is the Bitch the key to Keiji’s escape, or to his final death?”

    This work falls into the category of a “Japanese Light Novel,” a work written in a popular entertainment style, run about 40,000-50,000 words, and target a primary audience roughly analogous to a North American “Young Adult” novel.

    This novel is identified as Sakurazaka’s “breakout” science fiction novel. It has been optioned by Warner Brothers for production, with the working title of We Mortals Are.  According to IMDB, the film is in pre-production and scheduled for release as All You Need is Kill in 2013.  Doug Liman directs; Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt star.

    Decisions, Decisions!
    Yes, it's that time again: time to decide on new selections to read in October, November, and January. If you haven't already done so, it's time to get started making your list of "book candidates."



    And Speaking of Books:
    We have a new review on our Reviews and Commentary page! In this new addition, David Sooby offers a detailed and literate review of Mid-Flinx by Alan Dean Foster.

    PHOTO CREDITS: The book cover image is courtesy of Barnes & Noble Booksellers.

    September 08, 2012

    Monthly KaCSFFS Meeting Sept. 15, 2012

    Don't forget your Super Suit (capes optional)!
    Our guest speaker is "Captain" Jaymes
    Logan of the Geekvolution website.
    Who: You, we hope!
    What: KaCSFFS Monthly Meeting
    When: September 15, 2012, from 6:30-9:30 p.m.
    Where: Our usual, The Writers Place, 3607 Pennsylvania Ave., Kansas City, MO 64111
    Why: Fun with Friends and Superheroes
    How: With style and gusto, of course!

    Super September
    The September meeting theme of superheroes is a tip o' the hat to our guest speaker, Jaymes Logan.

    A notable local expert on comics and Star Trek, Logan will speak about comics, and--if you wish--also his new book, geek video, Trek, and related topics. Come pre-loaded with questions!

    "Captain Logan" is one of the two masterminds (along with the indispensable Vince) behind the Geekvolution website, your source for a new video every day, forums, blogs, items for sale, a master list of Superhero movies, and much more.

    Logan's book will be available
    for sale on Saturday night.
    Logan's new book is The Girl with Seven Names, recently published by Argosy Press. There will be copies for sale at the meeting (as well as Geekvolution T-shirts). Bring cash or checks! A book description from the Geekvolution site tells us:

    “Dr. Franklin Bryce is a therapist with an unusual specialty: helping people deal with the unfathomable realities of the Multiverse. Helena Kathryn is a woman with unusual problems: multiple personalities, incredible strength, and severe amnesia.

    "When a bat-winged, dimension-hopping thief steals Franklin's greatest gift - his telepathy - his life starts to unravel. Returning to the humdrum cases of normal psychotherapy holds no thrill... until Helena comes to him for help discovering her true identity.

    "Unable to resist the allure of a tantalizing new case, Franklin jumps back into the many worlds of the Multiverse with Helena in tow. Standing in their way are killer robots, insane hypnotherapists, and a slew of alien adversaries. Of course, all of these are nothing compared to the greatest threat of all: Helena herself!”

    If you can't attend the meeting, but still want the book, it is available from Geekvolution (please make them your first choice, since this is buying from the author himself), or from KaCSFFS friend (and home of SF&F Literati) Barnes & Noble. It also is available from Amazon.

    We bet you can do better than "Human Torch"
    Marshmallows, when it comes to bringing Super Food!
    Food Theme
    As usual, we are asking you to bring creative food offerings--this time on a "Superheroes" Theme! Ask yourself, "What would a superhero eat?" Other than "Whatever s/he wants to," might it be "Caped Cupcakes"? Perhaps "Spidey Spaghetti," or "Wonder Woman Bread"?

    Scour the web, wrack your brain, and channel you inner Super Chef, to nourish BOTH our bodies and our imaginations with Super Foods!

    There WILL be voting--and certificates for the best Super Foods! (Consider the gauntlet to have been thrown).

    Late Note! We backed a WINNER!!
    Congratulations to 2012 ConQuesT Artist Guest of Honor Ursula Vernon for her HUGO AWARD!!! She won the category "Best Graphic Story" for Digger.

    PHOTO CREDITS: We are indebted to Argosy Press for the photo of Jaymes Logan. Amazon provided the cover art for The Girl with 7 Names. And we really hope that Marvel agrees our satirical use of their Human Torch image, originally created by artist Adi Granov for the cover of Fantastic Four, vol. 4, 542 (Jan. 2007 Marvel Comics), accessed from Wikipedia, is "fair use"!