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Ghost Hunters & Superheroes

I really had fun this weekend. A lot of the time writing (for me, anyway) involves me being anti-social, staying at home at the desk. So when I have a weekend of getting to see friends, old and new, it is a hella cool time for me. My girlfriend Wendy (a talented photographer, who took the photos below– her website is HERE) and I hit the road and visited West Bend and Chicago for a couple of events I was invited to participate in.

Friday, I participated in the Museum Of Wisconsin Art‘s member show, which was superhero themed. I judged a costume contest along with Real Life Superhero The Watchman (one of the subjects of my book Heroes in the Night, available HERE) and fashion designer Miranda Kay Levy, who you might have seen on Project Runway. She asked me to help judge and you know when an acclaimed designer like Miranda asks me for my fashion opinions, we’re in for a rare situation. There were about 10 or 12 entries in the contest and they were all great, very creative.

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Miranda Kay Levy, myself, The Watchman family at the Museum of Wisconsin Art.

I had some waves of nostalgia rolling in to town, as I was briefly a resident of West Bend in 1996. I finished my Senior year of high school there. More importantly, it’s where I met an incredibly unique group of individuals who became my friends. I think my life adventures really began in West Bend.

In addition to the costume contest, I tabled with Heroes in the Night, sold a few copies, and talked with a few people who were genuinely interested in what I was up to. People got to talk with The Watchman, who was there with two of his kids– Wonder Boy and Guardian Girl.
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The next morning, we headed down to the Chicago Ghost Conference. Real Life Superhero Razorhawk (of Minneapolis) had been invited to do a panel on what being a RLSH is all about and he had Chicago RLSH Citizen Prime and Wraith as well as myself as guests. Attendance was low, but we didn’t let it get us down. I got to chat with a couple people I’ve met over the last year or two  who will be featured in my next book, Monster Hunters (out in June 2015, you can pre-order HERE).

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Razorhawk and I talk ghosts and superheroes at the Chicago Ghost Con.

I also met a few new people involved with the field of paranormal investigation. I did an interview with second generation ghost hunter Alexandra Holzer, which will make for a great future article somewhere.  I even got my photo taken with B movie host icon Svengoolie.

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Svengoolie!

I am planning a one day Milwaukee Paranormal Conference for June 6 (see website HERE), so perhaps the best thing I got from the conference was taking a look firsthand at things I thought worked and things I thought did not.

A fun weekend hanging out with a lot of great people I’ve had the fortune of meeting, and in many cases, writing about.

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Real Life Superhero themed play, “Superheroes,” debuts in Denver

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A month or two ago I exchanged messages with Leslie C. Lewis, a playwright from Denver, Colorado. She told me that she was writing a short play titled “Superheroes,” which is part of a line-up of short plays sharing a setting called “The Playground.” Lewis’s entry consists of a team of Real Life Superheroes, the “Dark Star Patrol,” having a post-patrol meeting in the early morning hours at the playground.

Lewis told me that reading my book Heroes in the Night was part of her play research and asked me a couple follow up questions while finishing the final draft. She also tells me she is working on an expanded, full length version of the play.

“The Playground” is produced by And Toto Too Theater Company and runs November 6-22 at The Laundry on Lawrence in Denver. More info here: www.leslieclewis.com/leslie-c-lewis-upcoming-events/

Below, check out these awesome pictures of the cast on the set with their personalized copies of Heroes in the Night!
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Top row (L-R): RLSH characters Dr. Intelligent, Brave Fairy, Confucius
Bottom row: Omni, Zygote, Mantis

Heroes in the Night is available here: www.ipgbook.com/heroes-in-the-night-products-9781613747759.php and wherever fine books are sold.

A big congrats to And Toto Too Theater Company. Break a leg!

HEROES IN THE NIGHT Auction

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This copy is signed by myself and 45 Real Life Superheroes. The signatures were collected by the author in Chicago, Milwaukee, and Minneapolis. The book was then sent with Razorhawk to San Diego to collect signatures at a mass meet up, HOPE.

All money raised from this auction will be donated to HOPE, an organization that distributes supplies to the homeless.

You can find more info on the book’s eBay auction page: www.ebay.com/itm/131289995764?ssPageName=STRK%3AMESELX%3AIT&_trksid=p3984.m1555.l2649

Thanks for taking a look!

April Events

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Crusader Prime, one of the C2E2 panelists. Photo from Chicago Tribune.

Hello, my friends, it has been awhile since I posted on my blog here. I’ve been extremely busy working on my next book, doing final interviews, transcribing, research, a million and one little details. It’s going well and I can kind of see the forest from the trees on this project now.

I have two events going on later this month that I’m real happy, real excited about.

First, I’ll be talking about Heroes in the Night at the next MKE Comic Book Meet-up, April 22. This is a cool group in Milwaukee that meets up on a regular basis to discuss comic books. The them for the next one is “Social Issues in Comics” and they kindly asked me to be part of it. The first part of the evening will be a discussion from 6:30-7:45pm about comics that have tackled social issues. People are encouraged to bring comics they’d like to talk about.

I will be talking about Heroes in the Night afterward from 7:45-9pm, particularly focusing on how the subject of the book (Real Life Superheroes) reflect their comic book counterparts. I’ll be showing some slides and I will have copies of the book available for a flat $16. This is going to be a fun time at Anodyne Coffee in Walker’s Point, a nice, casual environment.

Info: Tuesday, April 22, Anodyne Coffee Roasting Co., 224 W. Bruce St., Milwaukee 53204. Comic discussion 6:30-7:45pm, Presentation by Tea Krulos 7:45-9pm. Free, copies of Heroes in the Night available for $16.
Facebook event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/292877017537427/

Next, how cool is this– I’ll be hosting a panel at this year’s Chicago Comic & Entertainment Expo (C2E2)!

The panel is titled “You Can be a ‘Real Life Superhero!'” I’ll be moderating special guests Razorhawk, the Watchman, Crusader Prime, Crimson Catalyst, and Night Vision. We will also have a couple surprise guests appearing via video message. I will be showing some slides and we will be talking about what this Real Life Superhero business is all about. We also will have a Q & A session with the audience. Hulk Hogan will be at C2E2, but I can’t speculate if he’ll show up for the panel.

This will take place Sunday, April 27 2:30-3:30pm Room S401ab. Afterwards, I will be signing copies of Heroes in the Night at the Chicago Review Press booth from 4-4:45pm.

Besides the panel members, several other RLSH will be attending the con and my inside sources tell me the assembled RLSH will be joining forces and patrolling Chicago, handing out supplies to homeless people as they go. Good work, my super friends, good work!

Info: The panel takes place at C2E2 (South Building at McCormick Place) Sunday, April 27 2:30-3:30pm, book signing follows 4-4:45pm at the Chicago Review Press booth. 

Here is the panel listing on C2E2’s site: http://c2e214.mapyourshow.com/5_0/sessions/sessiondetails.cfm?ScheduledSessionID=18ADCB

A Crazy Fun October

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That’s me with some Real Life Superheroes at a Heroes in the Night promotional appearance at Common Good Books in Saint Paul.

Wow, what a month! I’ve really been burning the candle at both ends.

October 1 was the official release date of my book, Heroes in the Night: Inside the Real Life Superhero Movement. It was a really proud day for me– I did it! I got a book out, you can find it at a lot of bookstores. It’s also available online here: http://www.ipgbook.com/heroes-in-the-night-products-9781613747759.php?page_id=21

To promote the book, I did four bookstore appearances. I was at Quimby’s Bookstore in Chicago on 10/05. My big hometown appearance was 10/11 here at Boswell Book Company in Milwaukee. A lot of family and friends were there and we had a fun after party at Stonefly Brewery.

I appeared at Westfield Comics in Madison on 10/19 and Common Good Books in Saint Paul, MN on 10/20. All cool stuff. I was joined by people featured in my book at all stops, so I big thanks to Wraith, Citizen Prime, the Watchman, Geist, Razorhawk, Misery White, and Blue for joining me at Q and A sessions. It was really great to get out, see old friends, and meet new ones, too.

I haven’t seen exact figures, but the publisher tells me the book is doing good. I’ll be continuing to promote it with media appearances through the holidays (and beyond.) Next place I’ll be is here in town for Milwaukee Zine Fest Nov. 9 (website: http://milwaukeezinefest.org/2013/index.php) I’ll have copies of the book and a little zine of wacky poetry I did titled Palookaville.

I’ve also been working hard on my (as yet untitled) second book, which is about people who study the paranormal. I took a hectic trip east to do field work for the book, travelling to West Virginia, Kentucky, Maine, and Florida over a ten day stretch. I’ve been writing about some of this for Onmilwaukee.com. You can read about my Kentucky adventure here:  http://onmilwaukee.com/myOMC/authors/onmilwaukeecomstaffwriters/milwghoststorybobbymackey.html

Last thing I wanted to mention is an article I wrote for Third Coast Daily about Arkham House, a little known but important Wisconsin publishing house. They published the first works by H.P. Lovecraft and Ray Bradbury, among others. I worked on it on and off for a long time, and it was well timed to appear just before my favorite holiday, Halloween.

Here’s the article: http://thirdcoastdaily.com/2013/10/the-horror-of-sauk-city-arkham-houses-weird-fiction-legacy/

Below is a picture included in the article of Arkham House founder and prolific Wisconsin writer August Derleth. Happy Halloween!

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August Derleth