Yesterday (Jan 10, 2020), the news broke of one of my musical heroes passing away. I’ve posted elsewhere about how his drumming influenced my playing (I’m a drummer too). But I thought I’d share here that Neil Peart also inspired my love of writing. I first discovered Rush in about 1978 when a school friend loaned me a copy of the Fly By Night LP. The overall musicality surprised me, but it was the drumming that really grabbed me and opened my eyes and ears. But once the music started to seep into my brain, I started to really notice the lyrics. And then I realized that both of those things came from the same person. Neil was not only an incredibly technically proficient drummer, one of the greatest in the world, he was also an accomplished writer. He wrote all the lyrics for Rush songs (with one or two exceptions), and his words were lush, literate, poetic, and imagery-laden. I learned about Tolkien, Coleridge, Rand and more from Neil. In later years, he published travelogue books and collections of poetry. He taught me that being a drummer wasn’t a one-dimensional thing. Reading his lyrics gave me a love of language and expression. In short, Neil made me want to be a writer. I started writing stories. I wrote articles. I got involved in my high school newspaper. I’ve written lyrics in every band I’ve been in. And now I write books. I love writing. And it was Neil Peart who started me off on that path. Thank you, Professor.
As we draw near the close of a decade, I thought it would be worthwhile to take a look back at the best Doctor Who from the ’10s. I was originally going to pick my 10 favorite television stories that aired between 2010 and 2019. But then I thought it would be fun to make one selection from each calendar year. And since there were a number of years in which only one episode happened, that gave the opportunity to stray outside of just the television show. So here’s our picks for the 10 highlights from the past 10 years:Continue reading
ANNOUNCING the first picture book from author R. Alan Siler and illustrator Stephanie Jackson! In Lucy Can’t Dance, little Lucy Rosencrantz discovers the joys of dance and self-expression and encourages children of all ages to find their own dance! Get more details at the Lucy Can’t Dance page.
H. G. Wells’ The Time Machine was originally released in 1895. To celebrate its 125th birthday, kOZMIC Press launches it’s new imprint, kOZMIC Classics, with a very special edition of this timeless masterpiece. Included in this release are:
- The original short story, “The Chronic Argonauts,” which Wells later expanded into the novel
- The complete The Time Machine novel by H. G. Wells, including a section of text that was not included in either the original British or American publications
- A newly-written essay by Dr. Lisa Yaszek, Professor of Science Fiction Studies at Georgia Tech, tracing the development between the two works.
Expected publication date of this anniversary edition is Spring 2020.
The brand-new, fully updated “Remastered” edition of Doctor Who’s Greatest Hits will be out November 2019, the show’s anniversary month! We plan to debuting copies at Conjuration Convention (crossing fingers!) and it’ll be available in wide release at the same time. Visit the DWGH page to get full details, read excerpts, and pre-order!
Milton Branch Library
Saturday, Oct 24
R. Alan Siler will be appearing as a panelist at MALCon, an event being held at the Milton Branch of the Fulton County Library System. He’ll be on two panels:
- Media Tie-In Literature (Star Trek, Doctor Who, and others) at 4:00 p.m.
- Indy Publishing (Comics and Books) at 5:00 p.m.
He’ll be appearing with our good friend and fellow author Bobby Nash as well as other friends he’s not met yet, Mike Smith and Mia and KJ Eldridge. The event is happening all throughout the library from 10:30 – 6:00, with an after-hours concert by local band The Relics, whose style blends influences from 1960s Brit-rock, classic rock, garage rock, 90s pop-rock, and modern alternative rock.
Get more information about the whole event at https://www.facebook.com/events/687416788423153/
And let us know that you’re planning to attend either of the two panels:
Media Tie-In Lit: https://www.facebook.com/events/2543537779061363/
Indy Publishing: https://www.facebook.com/events/399810817382475/
We will be appearing at CONjuration Convention in Atlanta – November 15-17, 2019! CONjuration is a 3-day immersive, magical, and fantasy convention in Atlanta, GA. We celebrate the worlds of Harry Potter, The Lord of the Rings, Narnia, Buffy and much more through cosplay, panels, and fun activities for all ages! Author/Owner R. Alan Siler will be running a kOZMIC Press table throughout the weekend and appearing on panels on various topics. Hope to see you there! CONjuration is one of the best-run conventions in the Atlanta area. If you’ve never been, do yourself a favor and make plans to attend this year!