New Seventh Star Superstar Carl R. Moore wrote this spiffy new review of Haunting Obsession and asked me a few questions about it. I was pleased and honored at the kind words and the attention Maxine continues to draw after all this time. Check it out. Carl’s article follows:
I’m very excited to announce my new review series, Review-Interview, a combination of a book review and short interview with the book’s author. It is in part a continuation of my blog’s original “Is that an Old Book?” review series. Adding a dialogue with the author brings in an exciting new element. The first featured book is Haunting Obsession, and the interview is with its author R.J. Sullivan. Without further ado, please enjoy the first installment of Review-Interview, brought to you by Carl R. Moore and Seventh Star Press:
A gifted young computer programmer has a passion for collecting movies and memorabilia featuring his hallowed idol—the elegant and alluring Maxine Marie. His colleague and girlfriend, Loretta, tolerates his obsession, but only to a point. When Daryl pays a high price for an old rent check signed by the famous actress, not only does he push his hobby and his girlfriend too far, he also summons an entity that is beautiful and dangerous, electric and evil, arousing and voracious—the ghost made flesh of Maxine Marie herself.
In Haunting Obsession, author R.J. Sullivan crafts a novella about a supernatural love triangle that draws its power primarily from its well-wrought characters. Flawed, somewhat geeky heroes likeable for their brains and sense of humor, protagonists Daryl and Loretta come across as a couple you might know and root for. You can see the attraction between them, Loretta’s affinity for the “mind behind the Star Trek posters”, as it were, and Daryl’s understanding that the woman he loves has the right combination of brains and easy-going tolerant spirit to be long-term material.
I’m a proud author with Seventh Star Press, and Imaginarium is, in great part, the brainchild of SSP Editor-In-Chief Stephen Zimmer. And so, I was there for Imaginarium’s first and second year and saw the convention grow from a great idea to an expanding community where readers and writers meet, joke, party, and exchange ideas in a nurturing environment all weekend long. Imaginarium 2016, year three, looks to be the best year yet, and you can be sure I’m not missing out on this one.
Imaginarium is the weekend of Oct 7-9 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Louisville, KY (near the airport). It’s about a two hour drive from Indianapolis, perfect for a day trip or for staying the weekend. The programming requires a membership badge, but the vending room is free and open to the public. Genres include but are not limited to science fiction, fantasy, horror, romance, and graphic novels.
If seeing me isn’t enough reason to go (and that’s fine, just don’t tell me to my face, we writers have tender egos), there’s a film festival, masquerade ball, panels, and workshops for readers and writers of all levels and interests.
I have already spoken to a great extent about what a terrific time I had at Imaginarium catching up with old friends and to meeting new ones. Some success stories are public and have been circulated around. Others are a bit more private. I have decided to share bits of this private story.
D.A. (Alex) Adams is a talented author of epic fantasy. He had been accepted at my publisher as one of the Seventh Star stable of authors before me. When we first met at Fandomfest in 2012, his was the only series of books out by the awesome Bonnie Wasson and he coveted having to share her with me. And who can blame him.
Alex and I sat next to each other for several hours that weekend, and had lots of time getting to know each other. I watched a loving father engage with his child while on vendor duty (not an easy thing). We talked about writing and being part of a small press family. He shared his opinion–often bluntly–about being a teacher in a collegiate environment that was morphing into a system toxic for both students and teachers. He spoke of tremors in his hands, a lifelong affliction which seemed then to be under control. He had a mane of blond hair, matching beard and mustache, and a twinkle of optimism in the eyes.
In the years since, I have read his blog posts with interest, in which he speaks with the same blunt honesty about the devastating impact of divorce, the growing negative impact of social media, and the toxic college environment from which he eventually separated himself. He also spoke of a health condition that remains as mysterious as it is debilitating, which brings me to a few days ago.
I say somewhat shamefaced that when Alex approached me, I had to look twice and finally reference his name badge to figure out who was addressing me. The blond mane was gone, the twinkle diminished, though I still see some fight in those eyes. We had several conversations that weekend, chatted about how his health has affected his everyday life, but also about old time rock n roll, the joy of writing, the unity of the writing community, and more. He said he’d just had some tests which would determine next steps with his condition. I was glad I had a chance to get caught up with this great guy.
Then a couple of days later, his next blog post went up. The test had revealed nothing–that there was no plan of treatment, and that he honestly didn’t know what to do.
Alex had no sooner posted this on his blog when something really cool happened.
Dave Mattingly of Blackwyrm Publishing (one of several small press publishers in the region who regard their competition as CINO–Competition in Name Only (I just made that up, feel free to steal it)) (and the sentence nominated for the most complicated series of parenthetical asides in a blog post ever–your welcome)–set up a fundraising page that lets the public help. Why? Because the publishing community just rocks that way, and Dave is one of the hardest rockers out there.
Before I go any further, I would be remiss not to mention what Alex himself is quick to point out. Alex writes very cool epic fantasy adventure, and you can support him in a very direct way by buying his books. Check them out here.
As of this writing, the Brotherhoopd has raised $930.00 of a proposed $1,000.00 in only four days. That in and of itself says much of the generosity of this community. I expect very soon, maybe by the time you read this, the “goal” will be raised. However, anyone who knows anything about the medical field knows that $1,000.00 doesn’t get you very far. So let’s keep going, blow that number away.
Please donate and boost the signal. Thanks for listening.