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Long Overdue Update

It’s been a pretty crazy couple of months for me.

The Thing Read-Along Record Book actually kind of went a little viral! It was featured on a handful of websites, including some big ones like io9, The Dissolve, and The Onion A.V. Club (which was a Bucket List moment for me).


The YouTube video also received almost unanimously positive comments from fans, and there were tons of tweets sent from all over the world. Overall, it was an amazing experience and I’m incredibly lucky and thankful that it received such a warm embrace by the internet.

Other than that, I’ve been working on a few other projects, including more episodes of The Space Monkey X Audio Workshop. Episode 2 was some dramatic readings of old Chuck Palahniuk-inspired short stories I wrote a while back. Episode 3 is the debut of a defunct-podcast I was a part of called The Drunken Podcast, created by my friend Steve some time ago. The show was never released, despite us having a few good episodes recorded, but I thought it would be a shame for it to just sit on his hard drive going unheard. I’m working on Episode 4 right now, which will be my first interview. I’m excited and a little nervous about it…

I also released another episode of When You Hear This Sound, this time a “Christmas in July” episode featuring a Star Wars Christmas record. A Halloween episode is coming up soon, but it’s just going to be The Thing Read-Along Record Book since it never actually played for that audience yet.

Finally, the Strange States series continues on Mental Floss, with Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, and Nevada.

See? Pretty crazy!

The Thing Read-Along Record Book

Yes, it’s here, folks!  My super-secret audio project has finally been released.  As you can see by the title of this post, it is an original read-along record book of John Carpenter’s The Thing.

Long story short, I love those old record books that were popular in the 1970s and 80s, but they were always made primarily for kid’s movies, TV shows, and comic books.  But that means a lot of great films that came out during that time period never got the full record book treatment.

So, along with some of my geeky friends, I decided to correct this oversight, and am now working on read-along record books for the films that never got them in the first place.  My first choice was John Carpenter’s classic 1982 cult hit, The Thing.

This is also an opportunity to announce my new podcast, The Space Monkey X Audio Workshop, hosted over at  You can read more about The Thing record book and the new podcast over there.

Here’s a direct link to The Thing podcast episode.  Don’t forget to download the PDF record book, too!

Or if you’d prefer to the get the audio and the record book in once place, just hit Play on the YouTube video below.

June Update


Hey!  Only one month between posts!  That’s gotta be a new record…

It was a fairly eventful month too, so strap yourself in.

Mental Floss posted a mix of new and old items of mine.  The Strange States series continues with Michigan and Minnesota.  There were two excerpts from my very first story back in 2008 – one as The Actual Size of Greenland, and the perennial favorite The Map With Only 38 States.  And another hit from the past, Eaten by a Grue: A Brief History of Zork, was republished as well.

Over at Top Hat Sasquatch, I posted a review of a bridge novel that spans between Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and Rise of the Planet of the Apes called Firestorm.  I also wrote a review for the novelization of Alien.  Most importantly, though, I was finally able to update When You Hear This Sound with episode 12, The Last Starfighter.

In other news, I have completed the first cut of my super-secret audio program.  I’m going to be working on phase 2 and 3 of the project this week, then returning to the audio to fine tune and clean things up a little.  Then I’ll have a final sit down with one of my good friends and we’re going to go through everything with a fine-toothed comb to get it just right.  So hopefully in August I’ll be able to announce it to the world.


April/May Update

Jeesh.  I have to do a better job of keeping this place updated.  Anyway, here we go…


My Strange State series continues with Maine, Maryland, and Massachusetts.

The editor also asked me to update a classic story of mine, The Complete History of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, which was republished and proved popular once again.

Other Writing Stuff

I’ve also been doing some writing for an advertising agency from my Champaign-Urbana days.  I can’t reveal the client or anything, but I’ve gone through three rounds of brainstorming on taglines for a government agency, and I’m still not sure if they liked any of my suggestions.

I’ve also written a piece that will be featured in an upcoming issue of a publication put out by the University of Illinois.  It’s my first of what will hopefully be many more to come.

I’m catching up on my stack of books to review for Top Hat Sasquatch, so I’ll have some more links coming soon.

I’m also hoping to have a new When You Hear This Sound podcast episode coming out soon.  Everything is written; it’s just a matter of finding time to record and edit.

Personal Stuff

Other than that, I’ve been spending a lot of free time working on my super secret, still unfinished audio project.  I’m making major strides with it, though, so here’s hoping I can have it finished soon and reveal it to the world.  I’d like to make that announcement by the end of June, but time will tell.


February / March Update

Wow!  I think this might be the largest gap in recent history.  It doesn’t help that February and March were extremely busy for me and my family.  We’ve mainly been gearing up for Wizard World St. Louis, which took place last weekend.  My wife sold some geeky, handmade items there, but the build-up to the event has been hectic.  But now that that’s over, I’m hoping to have more time to get some more things written and posted for the world to see.

As I mentioned last time, I’ve been working on a super secret project behind the scenes.  I was hoping that project would be done by now, but due to unforeseen circumstances, I was not able to get it completed just yet.  I’m hoping to finish things up soon, though, and reveal it to the world in May sometime.  I’ll let you know as soon as I have something.

Anyway, as for my writing, here’s what got published in the last few months:

My Strange States series continues with Kansas (Please note that I’m well aware the silo is a grain silo, rather than a missile silo. I have nothing to do with the images they choose for these Strange State entries.), Kentucky, and Louisiana.

20 Rare (And Really Expensive) LEGO Minifigs was a fun article to research and write.

I was able to check off one of my long-gestating article ideas with A Brief History of Mold-A-Rama, those waxy, plastic figurines you used to find at zoos, museums, and amusement parks.  They’re still around, but becoming increasingly rare.

And, finally, a classic story of mine from 2009, and one of my most successful stories ever, was reprinted.  Get Rich Quick: 6 People Who Accidentally Found a Fortune seems like a perennial favorite.

Top Hat Sasquatch
Thanks to our relationship with Titan Books, I posted a few more book reviews over at THS these last couple of months.

I reviewed the first two volumes of the French graphic novel series, Snowpiercer.  Personally, I liked Volume 1 more than Volume 2.  We’ll see how I feel about the final volume someday.

I also reviewed some fun British World War II comics collected in Battle Classics.

And just before the release of the new film, I gave a look-see at 300: Rise of an Empire – The Art of the Film.


I have a new episode of When You Hear This Sound in the works, and I’ve been sitting on a review of a new book for THS for about three weeks now.  I need to get it finalized and posted; it’s just been a matter of finding the time.

Keep checking back for those and other projects!