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It's been way too long since I have last used my DA account, so I am doing some uploads and adjustments. I also have a Behance account if you want to check it out.

www.Behance.net/DamonDraws
  • Listening to: Kavinski - Nightcall
  • Drinking: Water
Just letting you all know that AFO is still accepting applications for Artist's Alley and Crafter's Run.  Check out AFO11.com for details.  :)
  • Listening to: Yma Sumac - Gopher Mambo
  • Reading: Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr.
  • Watching: Legend of the Seeker
  • Playing: Batman: Arkham Asylum
  • Eating: buffalo chicken something
  • Drinking: Water
I think I would like to do something like this:

www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article…
  • Listening to: Yma Sumac - Gopher Mambo
  • Reading: Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr.
  • Watching: Legend of the Seeker
  • Playing: Batman: Arkham Asylum
  • Eating: buffalo chicken something
  • Drinking: Water
was amazing.  'Nuff said.
  • Listening to: Yma Sumac - Gopher Mambo
  • Reading: Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr.
  • Watching: Legend of the Seeker
  • Playing: Batman: Arkham Asylum
  • Eating: buffalo chicken something
  • Drinking: Water
It was, by far, the BEST convention I have ever worked. Seriously, the best ever. It was amazing writing for and being part of the interactive events. Performing in the cut scenes was frightening and exciting, just like my old high school drama days. And the rave... Absolutely epic! The energy of the crowd was amazing. People chanted my name as I DJed. Kaze, Dragonmun and I really rocked the house, in the truest sense. I have nothing but love for those girls, and for everyone else who came out and had a great time.

I honestly can't imagine ever having a better time at a con. I'm on the pinnacle. The mountaintop of emotion and accomplishment I sought for so long within the fandom. I have realized that it does not matter where you are, what circle you run with, no matter how popular or important a goal may be, when you reach this spot, so many things no longer matter. There is only you, and the people who worked hard and got to this point with you. There is a bond that will endure despite anything reality can throw at us. By gods, we fucking made it, and it was god damned beautiful! There is a fire that burns in your mind that nobody can touch, but your friends and loved ones can see, and it's an amazing feeling. I've been here once before, with a great group of friends that I will never forget. We rocked AWA 2 years in a row, and the view from that pinnacle will be etched in my heart until I die.

If you were at AFO and got to take part in what we created, thank you from the bottom of my heart. If you weren't, I'm sorry you missed it. There's always next year. For those that hope to accomplish something great in their lives, whether it's curing cancer or putting on a great show... do it. Work hard, stay positive, and fucking do it. Waste no time on the negative bastards that doubt you, save to learn how to do what you do better, and prove them wrong.
  • Listening to: Muscles - Sweaty
  • Reading: Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr.
  • Watching: Dexter
  • Playing: Overlord
  • Eating: buffalo chicken something
  • Drinking: Water
I have uploaded the manuscript here.  I am also compiling the Swords of Orlandia Omnibus, which should be available soon, either online at the AFO 10 website, or at the convention itself in hard copy.  This book will contain the complete saga, conceived and written by several talented folks, a tale that has been three years in the making.  It's truly a unique experience for a fan convention, and I am glad to have been involved.
  • Listening to: Les Baxter - Voodoo Dreams
  • Reading: Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr.
  • Watching: Dexter
  • Playing: Overlord
  • Eating: buffalo chicken something
  • Drinking: Water

My first book is done.

Mon Jul 6, 2009, 6:48 AM
I spent the long weekend writing... even went to a friend's 4th of July party, which was pretty chill anyway, and wrote while I relaxed with good people and smoked my pipe.  As of Sunday the 5th, 2:00pm, I typed the final words of chapter 10, completing War of Talons: Tales of the Wylde, which is a spin-off of Anime Festival Orlando's Interactive Convention Experience, Swords of Orlandia.  It is canon to the main storyline, and I collaborated with the Swords of Orlandia writers anf AFO staff to help intertwine key elements to the overall arc, which I believe will provide an intriguing backdrop for those who plan to participate in the corresponding events at AFO 10.

  This is the first time in which I have embarked on such an involved creative project, and saw it through to the end.  I have had a myriad of reasons and excuses for not finishing things I have started for so many years.  It feels warming to my very soul that I was able to see this one project to the end.  20,000 words, barely a novella.  Technically, it's been nearly a year in the making, but about 5 months of solid work. All the usual blocks arose.  I doubted.  I worried about cliches.  I distracted myself with video games.  I sought validation as I released the chapters online or sent them to friends, and became discouraged as I received a great deal less feedback than I had hoped.  For once, I kept going.  

  It's not the most original book, certainly not the "great American novel", nothing poignant that will turn the fantasy-writing world on its ear... but hopefully a good story, an engaging adventure that will take the reader on an inspiring ride, like any good fantasy piece should.  More importantly, I hope it brings an extra layer of depth and intrigue to an event that my friends at AFO have worked extremely hard on.  What they have put together is so unique for a fan convention, and I consider it a privilege to haven been given the opportunity to take part in such a creative and fun project.  I would like to thank Karen Trudeau and Erik Reiss for letting me contribute, and putting up with my "diva" moments and over-enthusiasm.

More importantly, thank you Erin.  You believe in me so much that I am actually able to believe in myself for a change.  Because of you I am able to remember the way.

I will be touching up the last two chapters and will be publishing them soon.  If you haven't read them yet, you will be able to read the entire story soon.  If you have, thank you for taking the time.  I welcome any input you have.

-D

  • Listening to: Martin Denny - Caravan
  • Reading: War of Talons: Tales of the Wylde
  • Watching: 0_o
  • Playing: WoW and Neo Steam
  • Eating: buffalo chicken something
  • Drinking: Water

Tiki

Tue Jun 16, 2009, 9:59 AM
So, I'm writing a journal just to try out this journal skins feature. What should I talk about?

Well, after going to the Hukilau in Ft. Lauderdale, I'm a bit inspired.  I'm thinking of doing some wall-worthy art for a change, possibly in tiki and/or tribal themes.  Not sure if I want to do the art digitally or try a traditional means.  I'll figure something out eventually.

I'm also thinking I'd like to do more retro events in general.  Swing Dancing, Lounge, etc...  I just like the music and design from the previous century.  I think as I am getting older, I appreciate that culture more than the anime stuff.  I feel so detached from the new shows, and the kids at the cons and what they are into.  Many of the folks at the Hukilau events were my age, if not older, and still engaging in their own bits of escapism, wearing outfits and whatnot.

  • Listening to: Martin Denny - Caravan
  • Reading: War of Talons: Tales of the Wylde
  • Watching: 0_o
  • Playing: WoW and Neo Steam
  • Eating: buffalo chicken something
  • Drinking: Water
So for a bit of fun and promotion, Twitters have been created by Anime Festival Orlando folks representing the two factions from the Swords of Orlandia story.  Feel free to follow them and tweet your allegiance to your favorite side or watch for updates to the "Swords of Orlandia" and "War of Talons" stories as they are published online.

twitter.com/AFOShadowfowl
twitter.com/AFOanarchs
  • Listening to: The Cars - Just What I needed
  • Reading: War of Talons: Tales of the Wylde
  • Watching: o_0
  • Playing: WoW and Neo Steam
  • Eating: buffalo chicken something
  • Drinking: Water
Jacon was awesome.  I am actually going to miss it.  The rave was great, save for a jackass or two.  The jacket I commissioned from :iconspazzbot: turned out great.  Many many thanks go to her, as well as :icondragonmun: for all that she has done this past weekend to help us promote AnimeFestivalOrlando 10. THat con is coming up soon as well, and I have lots to do for it. The story chapters are cooking along, and I'm working on more art, which I will eventually post.  Should be fun!

:)
  • Listening to: Men at Work - Underground
  • Reading: War of Talons: Tales of the Wylde
  • Watching: o_0
  • Playing: WoW and Neo Steam
  • Eating: buffalo chicken something
  • Drinking: Water
So I have been writing as of late, and it's for AFO10.

For the past couple of years, Anime Festival Orlando has been hosting "Swords of Orlandia" an 'interactive RPG event' as part of the convention activities, which includes scripted events, as well as various activities attendees can participate in during the weekend, along with chapters of storyline to follow on the website as the convention draws closer.  I have taken a rather active role in the creative end of this year's events.  The storyline for the third and final part of the saga is under way, which I have been contributing various concepts and elements with the main authors, two friends of mine.  We have also included an addtional tale, which I am writing as part of the backstory.

The chapters will be on the main convention website soon, and we have released some of them on the convention's MySpace page to offer a sneak peek of the story that is unfolding for this year's tale, Swords of Orlandia 3: Prophecy of Khaz'Radan, as well as War of Talons.
Feel free to follow these tales as they unfold.

www.myspace.com/animefestivalo…

www.afo10.com
  • Listening to: Yoji - Techy Techy
  • Reading: Lovecraft short stories
  • Watching: 0_o
  • Playing: WoW
  • Eating: buffalo chicken something
  • Drinking: Water
Yea, finally got around to uploading art for past conventions.  Feels good.
  • Listening to: Klute - 2 Lives
  • Reading: Lovecraft short stories
  • Watching: Jason Statham kicking butt
  • Playing: WoW
  • Eating: buffalo chicken something
  • Drinking: Water
I used to be soooo gay for vampires. After watching Underworld: Rise of the Lycans, I have decided that if I ever play a World of Darkness game again, I will create a Garou and fight the damn wyrm with ever fiber of my being.  While the story may be different from WoD, it illustrates the true evil of the ancient vampires and establishes a damn good reason for Lycans to despise vampires.  I liked the first Underworld, and this new film makes me feel like someone was listening when I first saw it and said, "Wow, I'd love to see a movie about the history of this war".  I really dig the portrayal of Lycans in these movies... the characters, the designs, the transformations and the fights.  Cool stuff.  I'm starting to really dig werewolves more now.  Oh, and My wife and I think that Michael Sheehan makes a great Lycan, and would have made a better Sirius Black than Gary Oldman.  I love Gary, but he was too pretty in the HP movies.  Besides, he made a better Dracula.  Sheehan has the scruffy-dog-in-human-form thing going.

I will say one thing for the vamps in Underworld, Viktor is an insufferable, menacing bastard with an amazing presence.  Bill Nighy has actually replaced Christopher Lee as my favorite vampire actor.  His voice is forboding, his mannerisms regal and commanding full of hubris-laden authority, not just pretentious... he plays an elder as it should be portrayed, imho.  His ticks and hisses of anger are positively reptilian, very wyrm-like, which makes for a great villain.
  • Listening to: Velvet Acid Christ - Psycho
  • Reading: Lovecraft short stories
  • Watching: Underworld Flicks
  • Playing: WoW, Rock Band, Fable II, Left 4 Dead
  • Eating: buffalo chicken something
  • Drinking: Water
So I have been meaning to post this link for a while.
findumonde.ning.com/

It's a site for a post-apocalyptic costume group that I am trying to organize for DragonCon '09.  We may show up at another con or two in the Orlando area to test run our outfits, but mainly shooting for a big group turnout at Dragon... if it gets big enough, I may see about getting folks to march in the parade. We'll see how it goes.  Anyhoo, if you are planning on going to DragonCon and would like to join in, feel free to sign up on the site.  Some of us are also doing ARG-type blog posts to give our costumes a backstory, so if nothing else, enjoy the blog.
  • Listening to: the Boris Gardner Happening - Ghetto Funk
  • Reading: Lovecraft short stories
  • Watching: in the Mouth of Madness, Cigarette Burns... again!
  • Playing: WoW, Rock Band, Fable II, Left 4 Dead
  • Eating: Soup in a Breadbowl P :
  • Drinking: Water
It has been a while since I have posted, so I figure I should upload some art that I did for AFO 9.  Horray!
  • Listening to: Ab Ovo - Odd
  • Reading: Lovecraft short stories
  • Watching: Lovecraft-inspired films
  • Playing: Fabel 2, WoW, Spore
  • Eating: Chicken Philly Sub
  • Drinking: Water
So I am seeing pretty little CSS-driven journal entries, and i think I would like to experiment with this, and improve the aesthetic of my journal.  Obviously this involves learning CSS or using one of the generators that folks have built for dressing up DA journals. Anyone have advice to offer, as far as how to begin?

I'm mostly thinking I would like to maybe add graphics to the header and footer, and I would like them to be as seamless and clean as possible.

Any help in this area would be appreciated.

Also, I'm playing Spore.  The game is just plain cute.  I just got my first creature to tribal stage.  It has multiple eyes and mantis-like appendages.  if you'd like to add me as a buddy, I'm on as Gearlock.

One more thing... F*CK YOU Microsoft. Please let us know beforehand, the next time you release a service pack that it is incompatible with various graphics cards, so i can look for a new driver first.  I want to kick Bill Gates in the junk right in front of Jerry Seinfeld... stupid commercial.
  • Listening to: Assemblage23 - Horizon
  • Reading: Lovecraft short stories
  • Watching: Lovecraft-inspired films
  • Playing: Spore... still drawing though.
  • Eating: not sure... maybe tacos later
  • Drinking: Water
DragonCon 2008 was awesome.  I know many people use that word and diminish its impact, but I assure you it truly was a great experience.  It was another year of me doing very little that is truly con related, as far as panels and events, but I had a wonderful time away from home, with friends, laughing and seeing new things.

I have also learned things like:

- Steampunk is the new Goth... just add a top hat with goggles on it.  adding a brass and/or copper color to things like nerf guns is helpful.
- I'm not getting anything accomplished.  I may drop off the MMORPG radar entirely so I can be creative again.
- Girls who play Team Fortress 2 are hot, and even hotter when they costume as TF2 characters.
- Sensible shoes trump cool boots, hands down.
- Middle-Eastern dancers can win sci-fi/fantasy costume contests by performing their talent and wearing cultural attire, as opposed to a sci-fi/fantasy costume.
- I would probably nail half or most of the Dawn Look-Alike contestants while the people who make fun of them sleep alone.  
- I can drink 6 mai tais, have a great time being drunk with friends, and sober up standing in a line to get my badge, and be completely sober when I go to bed, after an overnight drive on one hour of sleep.  protip: lack of sleep makes a drunken stupor more fun.

I have decided to create at least one costume for next year.  I saw a few road warrior costumes at the con, and realized this is an outfit I can do.  I don't need Spartan abs, I don't need to be a fabrication engineer or pay one to make props.  Duct tape and scuff marks actually add to the costume.  Ive started bugging my DragonCon buddies about doing a group.  I may even start a site for organizing said group.  My particular "persona" will have a swamprat, "Country Boy Can Survive" theme, hailing from the Florida wetlands, a place I figure I'd head to if things go to hell.  Plenty of places to hide, plenty of things to hunt/eat, miles of Everglades to separate me from the assholes.  We'll see how the costume project goes...

The one big convention geek moment I did do was seeing Bernie Wrightson.  Some say not to go see your heroes.  Fuck it.  The man is a legend, and I have always loved his art.  His inking and ability to set such dark moods and chilling scenes with pen strokes have impressed and inspired me for years.  It was great to shake his hand.  He told me that Dark Horse is releasing a new edition of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein containing the illustrations he did for the book, an edition of the book I have been wanting for a long time, as his Frankenstein pieces are my favorite.  I also need to track down Stephen King's Cycle of the Werewolf, which has his work in it.  It's brilliant ink work.

All in all, a weekend that I looked forward to all year, which met and exceeded expectations.  I already look forward to next year.
  • Listening to: Frank Sinatra & Count Basie - I only have eyes
  • Reading: Lovecraft short stories
  • Watching: Sars Wars - OMFG INSANE!
  • Playing: nothing...busy drawing for once!
  • Eating: not sure... maybe tacos later
  • Drinking: Water
I can't wait. I'm going to drink too many mai tais and stumble around the con.  I'm going to catch concerts and mock people in costumes.

My God... It will be beautiful!
  • Listening to: The Cars - Just What I Needed
  • Reading: Lovecraft short stories
  • Playing: nothing...busy drawing for once!
  • Eating: grilled cheese sandwiches
  • Drinking: Water
Many of you didn't know her.  She was a great friend and a creative person.  She was the kind of person that was so gentle and kind-hearted, that when she told us she had cancer, I raged at the universe for doing this to someone so nice, so pure.

She had two types, one was rather aggressive.  She fought all the way, and kept trying to smile.  She felt terrible when her friends hovered or worried, because she felt guilty for making them upset. Her husband is a patient, brave man, and was supportive the entire time.  As of Friday, Tamara's fight was over.  Now she can rest.

Something I have discovered from this experience, is how important it is to keep going.  I remember on 9/11, I was at work, glued to the radio and the internet, in shock and panic, weeping.  My coworkers stayed on task, and at the time, I was sickened by how callous everyone seemed to be.  Now as I deal with my grief over Tamara, it occurs to me that staying busy in a time of tragedy is an important coping mechanism for many people.  I am reminded of ants, when someone kicks over the anthill.  On the outset the ants that rush forth seem to be in a panic, but if you look closely, they are all rushing to secure the territory, and rebuild the mound as fast as possible.  Each insect has a duty, a function, and even if other insect have died, they keep moving, and keep working.  The ants restore order so that things are quickly back to normal, and the colony continues to thrive.

On a certain level, people are the same.  When violent change occurs, many people focus on getting things back to normal, adapting to a new environment if necessary.  It's like the instinct similar to ants, in that normalcy must be restored if we are to survive.

I am trying to be like that... trying to focus on work, on art, on the convention I was just at this weekend.  It was a great event, and I was glad to be a part of such a fun team, doing such a fun convention.  It was much-needed distraction.  I also try to keep in mind that she doesn't want me to cry, that she would want me to go out and live, and be happy.  It's not easy.  I have moments of weakness.  I am thankful that I have my wife and my friends.  I keep going for them, and for her.  I also try to keep in mind that cancer doesn't win when someone dies, it wins when someone gives up.

I love you Tamara.

BTW, if you happen to run into cancer today, be sure to give it a tall middle finger and a gritty "FUCK YOU" for me.  I'd appreciate it.
  • Listening to: Tito Puente - Liego Mijan
  • Reading: Lovecraft short stories
  • Playing: nothing...busy drawing for once!
  • Eating: Spicy Chicken and Cheese Fries
  • Drinking: Water
After playing the Arkham Horror board game with some friends, I have felt compelled to demonstrate just how much better an actual Call of Cthulhu gaming experience can be.  I will be running a paper-and-dice game, which I have not done in (literally) years.  I am going to use a quick start adventure, though with some tweaks and embellishments.  Characters have been rolled, we are just waiting for a chance to play.  AFO is next weekend, so it may be after that.

I hope to show my friends that facing a shambling thing  in the dark is more than a round of combat, and that loss of sanity is more than the removal of a token.  It's been a long time since I scare someone with my storytelling.  i hope I've still got it...
  • Listening to: Sweet Bee - Parvathanma
  • Reading: Lovecraft short stories
  • Watching: Red Dwarf on Netflix
  • Playing: nothing...bust drawing for once!
  • Eating: PB&J
  • Drinking: Water