Thursday, April 2, 2015

A to Z Challenge – B – Cult Classics Better Off Dead, Boston, Brave New World, and More! Plus Amazing Write Club News.

A to Z Challenge – Cult Classics – B
Movies-Music-Sci-fi Book-Bloggers-Dragon Term


Better Off Dead
A funny take on 80’s teen romances with hundreds of quotable lines – I want my two dollars! This 1985 film became an instant classic on video.

Big Trouble in Little China
Carpenter at his most fun with almost every genre thrown in the blender. This 1986 film was not a hit upon its release, but has since gained ground and earned solid reviews.

Music album –

Boston – Boston
A debut album that still sounds fresh today, it sold twenty-five million copies and gave the world the iconic More Than a Feeling.

Science Fiction Book-

Brave New World – by Aldous Huxley
One of the top novels of the 20th century, Huxley put a dark, dystopian spin on the future. It was also banned many times over the years.

Bloggers –

Bryan and Brandon at A Beer for the Shower
Do you have a tough skin? Not easily offended? Want the truth? Brandon and Bryan will give it to you! They tackle the degenerates we loath while poking fun at everyone. Brimming with snark, Brandon and Bryan are the authors of many books.

Helena at Becoming Layla
Want to journey with an author as she delves deep into a character? Want to become Layla? Helena’s cover many aspects of her adventures. Enjoy the ride!

Beth Ellyn Summer
Want to see the fun side of writing? Want visuals and lists and a positive attitude? Beth’s sweet nature will charm the socks off you!

Dragon of the Stars Term –

Balkan –
The Balkan is a small war ship that was popular for years before being discontinued. Aden is placed at the helm of a refitted ship and charged with finding the Dragon. The craft gets its name from the Balkan whip snake.

Dragon of the Stars comes out April 7, 2015
Check out the site What Are the Kargrandes? for clues as to how they tie into the story.
And just a few days left to join the Thunderclap campagin for the book!

To prepare for the launch of Dragon of the Stars next week, my publisher has dropped the price of CassaStorm to .99 cents at Amazon. (If you prefer ePub, it’s also on sale at Dancing Lemur Press.) CassaStorm is my highest rated book, winner of the Pinnacle Achievement Book Award, and was an eFestival of Books 2014 Winner. Sale good until April 4!

If anyone would like to Tweet about the sale, I would appreciate it:
Award-winning & best-selling CassaStorm by Alex J. Cavanaugh on sale for .99! @alexjcavanaugh #99cents #scifi

Ninja News

DL Hammons had a special announcement regarding Write Club:
Now, the WRiTE CLUB Champion will be announced during the DFW Conference, receive a three-chapter critique of their work by several of the judges – and – FREE ADMISSION TO THE DFW CONFERENCE IN DALLAS FOR 2016. That is a $400 value and an experience that cannot be missed! Wait, that’s not all – both finalist will also receive a $75 Amazon gift card! 

Sandra Ulbrich Almazan also has a Thunderclap for her upcoming book, Scattered Seasons.

Fan of either movie? Read Brave New World? Following those awesome bloggers? Figured out the Kargrandes yet? Excited for Write Club? And what would be your pick for Cult Classic B…?

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Insecure Writer’s Support Group and A to Z Challenge – A – Cult Classics!

Double shot today! The A to Z Challenge kicks off with A and it’s IWSG post day.

It’s time for another group posting of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group! Time to release our fears to the world – or offer encouragement to those who are feeling neurotic. If you’d like to join us, click on the tab above and sign up. We post the first Wednesday of every month. I encourage everyone to visit at least a dozen new blogs and leave a comment. Your words might be the encouragement someone needs.

My awesome co-hosts today are Suzanne Furness, Tonja Drecker, Toi Thomas, Rachna Chhabria, Fundy Blue, and Donna Hole!

My insecurity is that there is so much happening today!!!

First day of the A to Z Challenge.

IWSG post day.

CassaStorm goes on sale today! To prepare for the launch of Dragon of the Stars next week, my publisher is dropping the price to .99 cents today through April 4 at Amazon. (And if you would prefer the ePub version, it's also .99 at Dancing Lemur Press.) CassaStorm is my highest rated book, winner of the Pinnacle Achievement Book Award, and an eFestival of Books 2014 Winner.

Somehow I have to visit the IWSG participants, Challenge participants, and promote my book’s sale. I just may implode today…

If anyone would like to Tweet about the sale, I would appreciate it:
Award-winning & best-selling CassaStorm by Alex J. Cavanaugh on sale for .99! @alexjcavanaugh #99cents #scifi

Less than a week until Dragon of the Stars is released!

A to Z Challenge – Cult Classics – A
Movies-Music-Sci-fi Book-Bloggers-Dragon Term

Movies –

One of the most mind-bending Japanese anime films you will ever watch. Released in 1988, it is considered a landmark anime movie.

Altered States
Equally mind bending, this 1980 film was an adaptation of Paddy Chayefsky’s only novel and directed by Ken Russell. It marked the acting debut of William Hurt and Drew Barrymore and won two Academy Awards.

Music albums –

AC/DC- Back in Black
Ushered in new singer, Brian Johnson, with a bang – the album sold fifty million copies and is one of the highest grossing album in history.

Alice in Chains – Dirt
It went Quadruple Platinum with five hits, including Would and Down in a Hole. It’s one of the most influential albums of the 90’s.

Science Fiction Books –

The Andromeda Strain – Michael Crichton
One of his earliest books and the first to become a movie, it established Crichton as a genre writer.

At the Earth’s Core – Edgar Rice Burroughs
Classic mixture of fantasy and science fiction, it was adapted into a movie and a DC comic series.

Bloggers –

Al Penwasser - Penswasser Place
You want some edgy snark with a conservative political twist? Want some funny captions? Then Al is your guy! A former member of our military, Al is also an author.

Anne R. Allen
Want some of the best writing advice on the Internet? Anne (along with New York Best Selling author Ruth Harris) offers a detailed, in-depth look at the world of publishing.

Dragon of the Stars Term -

Aden –
He’s the main character in the book and a man driven to achieve. Of royal blood, he’s determined to take both command of his own ship and the Queen’s daughter as his wife. The war throws his plans into disarray and sets Aden on a path that will change him forever…

Dragon of the Stars comes out April 7, 2015!

Check out the site What Are the Kargrandes? for clues as to how they tie into the story.
And just a few days left to join the Thunderclap campagin for the book!

Are you participating in the Challenge? Do you remember those cult classics? Following Al and Anne? Figured out the Kargrandes? What are your writing insecurities today? And who wants to trade places with me today…?

Monday, March 30, 2015

April Movie Preview, What Are the Kargrandes, The Machine Movie Review, New Releases, and My World During the A to Z Challenge

I am visiting the delightful Stephanie Faris today with a humorous and snarky piece on giving from the heart.

I’m also at the Insecure Writer’s Support Group, outlining what is to come in April.

And I updated my blogroll! It is now alphabetized and in smaller sections. If you're a regular here and don't find your blog listed, please let me know.

What Are the Kargrandes?

New clue today at What Are the Kargrandes? This is clue number twelve – only one more to go! New clues every Monday until the release of Dragon of the Stars on April 7.

Sample Tweets for this week:

What are the Kargrandes? What are their powers? Are they sentient? #whatarethekargrandes @alexjcavanaugh

What are the Kargrandes? Can you solve the mystery by April 7? #whatarethekargrandes @alexjcavanaugh

If you haven’t signed up for the Thunderclap campaign, please do. If you are on either Twitter, Facebook, or Tumblr and want to help me spread the word of the release of Dragon of the Stars on April 7, click HERE.

And to celebrate my upcoming release, my publisher will be dropping the price of my third book, CassaStorm, to .99 on Wednesday! So if you haven’t picked it up, later this week will be your chance.

Movie Review

The Machine
Set in the near future, scientist Vincent McCarthy creates a self-aware artificial intelligence modeled after his late assistant. Britain’s Military of Defense wants to use Ava as a weapon though.
This is another quiet, slower-paced film. It explores a lot of issues surrounding life and death. When the military starts training Ava and it bothers her, it raises a lot of questions about what is right and what is wrong, as does the presence of soldiers from earlier experiments who have undergone unique transformations.
The other half of McCarthy’s mental and emotional struggle is his dying daughter. He has been working with the military on AI in hopes of finding a cure for her.
The special effects are good and the movie is well done. It’s one of those smaller films that’s good but not enough to really stick with you. This movie came out in 2013 and ironically there is another film coming out in April that is very similar.
Worth a watch if you’re in the mood.

New Releases

Michael – Path of Angels by Patricia Josephine

There is only one path.
Born mortal along with his three brothers, Michael is an Archangel with a specific role: hunt fallen angels and send them back to Hell…

Find Patricia and her books at Website/Blog, Twitter, Google+, Goodreads, and Wattpad

Catalyst by Lydia Kang

Sequel to Control

Purchase it at Barnes and Nobel, Amazon, and Powell’s

April Movie Preview

Here are the upcoming theatrical releases for April! As always, descriptions courtesy of the IMDB. Snarky comments by me.

3 –

Furious 7
Deckard Shaw seeks revenge against Dominic Toretto and his family for the death of his brother.
Director: James Wan
Stars: Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Dwayne Johnson, Jason Statham
Early reviews say it’s a fitting tribute to Paul Walker…

10 –

Ex Machina
A programmer wins a competition to spend a week at the private mountain estate of the company's brilliant and reclusive CEO. Upon his arrival, he learns he’s been chosen to be the human component in a Turing Test-charging him with evaluating the capabilities, and ultimately the consciousness, of the latest experiment in artificial intelligence. That experiment is Ava, a breathtaking A.I. whose emotional intelligence proves more sophisticated--and more deceptive--than the two men could have imagined.
Director - Alex Garland
Starring – Alicia Vikander, Oscar Isaac, Domhnall Gleeson
Artificial intelligence? Abd she’s named Ava? Now, why does that sound familiar…?


An extremely wealthy man, dying from cancer, undergoes a radical medical procedure that transfers his consciousness into the body of a healthy young man. But all is not as it seems when he starts to uncover the mystery of the body's origin and the organization that will kill to protect its cause.
Director: Tarsem Singh
Stars: Matthew Goode, Ryan Reynolds, Natalie Martinez, Michelle Dockery
Considering the director’s track record of doing beautiful looking films that are vapid, they might want to re-title this one Plot/less…

My World During the Challenge

The A to Z Challenge kicks off in just two days! There is still time to join us for the biggest blogging event of the year.

My theme is Cult Classics and I have all the posts formatted and images ready to go. I also have my posts scheduled at the A to Z Blog and the Insecure Writer’s Support Group site.

However, this year will be a little more insane as I have a book release and tour going on at the same time.

I’m still going to aim for my usual blog visits during the Challenge, which is one hundred and fifty a day, spread between blogger buddies, Challenge participants, and commenters. I’ll also have tour stops that are a top priority. I’ve already taken two days off from work to handle the load. (April 1, since it’s both day one of the Challenge and IWSG post day and April 7, since that’s Dragon’s release day.) But there are two other days during the month when commitments elsewhere will prevent me from visiting as many, at least right away.

My promise to everyone is that I will do my best. I may not get to every single post you toss out there, but I will try to get to as many as possible. Know that if you leave a comment, I WILL visit no matter what.

Remember, in addition to cult classic movies, albums, science fiction books, and a term from Dragon of the Stars, I will be featuring one to four blogger buddies every single day!

Plus there will be a giveaway and a scavenger hunt on April 7 to celebrate the realse of Dragon. And some awesome tour stops, all unique and really, really short!

I might even have a blogfest to announce….

Still puzzled by Kargrandes? Picking up some new books? Seen The Machine? Any April movie catch your eye? Is your April going to be just as crazy? Have a plan for coping?

Don’t forget to visit Stephanie Faris and the Insecure Writer’s Support Group!