Monday, April 24, 2017

For your viewing pleasure

A few days ago I had the extreme pleasure of watching The Handmaiden, the latest movie from Oldboy director Park Chan-Wook. Now, I haven't seen Oldboy (I've read the spoiler, and now I don't want to see it), but I know Park has a reputation for shocks and cinematic gore. Well, this movie is light on the gore, but it is beautifully filmed and there are plenty of shocks - plus an octopus, for those of you who like that sort of thing.

The basic plot is is. A conman selects a pretty young pickpocket to help him separate an heiress from her money.The heiress has been raised by a cruel and kinky uncle who trains her to read BDSM porn to groups of horny businessmen for profit. His profit. He plans to marry her later and take all her money. But the pickpocket's job is to convince the heiress that she should elope with the conman instead. After that, he says, he'll have her committed to a madhouse and give the pickpocket a cut of the money. But this movie is based on the English novel Fingersmith, written by the author of Tipping the Velvet, so you know the heiress won't fall for the conman. She'll fall for the pickpocket, and that will lead to all kinds of interesting developments. Lovely sex scenes, too. Lovely, lovely sex scenes.

I'll say no more about the plot, because it's too full of surprises to spoil. But I will say that the movie is available on Netflix. ;-)

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Update on the MC/hypno-themed movie Annihilation

Remember the book Annihilation, which I've raved about several times on this blog? I even included some lengthy quotes to demonstrate just how heavily it relied on MC and non-consensual hypnosis. I loved it and recommend it highly. If you missed my  old posts, or if you just want to see them again, click on the link above. I also discussed the story at length in my podcast interview with Callidus (Start at 1:00:26) because we'd recently learned that it was going to be adapted into a movie by Alex Garland of Ex Machina, 28 Days Later, and Dredd fame.

But after the news that Garland was making a movie, there came a long stretch where we heard nothing but crickets. Fortunately, Paramount has finally released a few snippets of footage at CinemaCon in Las Vegas. Don't ask me why they chose that con. In fact, if you know why they chose that con, tell me. (Better still, if you were there, give us all a full report!)

Anyway, it really was just snippets, but even the people who hadn't read the book and didn't know what they were looking at still came away excited. I'd hoped the footage would find its way online, but it hasn't; all I've seen are lots of articles describing that footage. io9 has the best, most MC-ish take, so that's the one I'll quote from:

The setting is a typical suburban house. Inside it is Natalie Portman’s character, and she’s crying. She’s lost someone and seems to be packing up or fixing the house to move out. Then, a man starts to walk up the stairs. It’s Oscar Isaac’s character, who just so happens to be the man Portman thought was dead. She’s stunned, excited, confused, and runs up to kiss him. But he’s almost not there. Unaware. Cold. Not kissing her back.

We move downstairs to the kitchen table where Isaac is sitting absolutely still with a full glass of water in front of him. She explains that he’s been missing for a year. No one knew where he was or what happened. He just disappeared. She asks if his mission was covert and he says “Maybe,” then “Yes.” She asks where he was and he says he doesn’t know where he was. “How is that possible?” she asks. “You must be able to tell me something,” she adds, now getting frustrated. “Does it matter?” he asks in a super creepy way. That shakes her but, finally, he’s about to open up.

“I was outside the room. The room with the bed. I saw you and recognized you. I recognized your face,” he says, which is very confusing to everyone. He takes a sip of water and says he’s not feeling well, which is when we see the blood. Portman’s character calls and ambulance and they’re off to the hospital. Isaac is convulsing, obviously very sick, and then three black SUVs stop the ambulance.
They break in, take them both out, and knock out Portman. She wakes up in some kind of hospital or prison with Jennifer Jason Leigh’s character. “Where’s my husband, I want to see a lawyer!” she says. We get a quick shot of Isaac’s character and it looks like he has silver makeup around his eyes in the hospital. Finally, Leigh’s character tells Portman’s what going on.

She explains there was an event. Maybe religious, maybe alien, they don’t know. Now there’s a mysterious area of the planet. They keep sending people there but no one has come back, she explains. “Now something has,” Portman says, referring to Isaac. “I need to know what’s inside.”
Portman then joins a team as they head into the area. This is when the footage sped up, mostly because I’m sure these parts of the movie are still being worked on. But here are a few of the images I remember. We see her and the other cast members walking towards almost like a blurry section of land. There’s a shot of Portman with a machine gun. A shot from inside some kind of big creature’s mouth of Jennifer Jason Leigh. People in a yard that seems to be made of vines. A vine-like substance growing on someone’s arm. Lights and colors and flashes that kind of looked like 2001. And that was that.

And now I'm going to share a video I did find on YouTube, of two very enthusiastic guys who didn't read the book but were nevertheless blown away by the teaser. Put their dialogue next to the quote above, and you might get an idea of how close or far the movie the movie might differ from the book. Also, if you have read the book, these guys' crazy theories will make you fall off your chair laughing.

Monday, March 27, 2017

A sneak peek on my next story

Right now I'm at roughly the halfway point of "The Power of Positive Slavery." It's going to be a long story, which will be great for you when it finally comes out! The problem is getting it out. I feel like I'm giving birth. :-/ Anyway, I thought I'd gift you with the first couple of sections tonight, just so you have something to play with. This should give you a good idea of where the story will be heading, and you can fantasize about all the nice and nasty little touches I'll throw in along the way.

The wording isn't pinned down yet, but this is how the story begins.

“Not even komodo dragons?”
Ainsley groaned. “Komodo dragons live in Indonesia, not Polynesia, and don’t act like you didn’t know that already.”
Gemma had already drunk more wine than was good for her. Sober, she was a brilliant lawyer. Drunk, she was a very deliberate airhead. She held her fingers a couple of inches apart and giggled. “Not even little itty bitty dragons?”
Ainsley was drunk enough, herself, to brush that off. “Oh, sure,” she said, “we’ve got tons of those. But since they don’t have wings, we had to come up with a special name for them. We call them lizards.”
Gemma pretended to pout. “Well, I don’t see how you can name an island Île des Dragons if you don’t have any real dragons. Maybe I shouldn’t go after all.
“I bet you’d go if you knew Chance Finney would be there.”
Gemma’s eyes widened. “He won’t!”
“He will. He signed up just last week.”
“So if I go, I get to fuck him?”
“Like I told you, it’s all about the free love, baby.” Ainsley had never met a genuine hippie in her life and quickly abandoned the accent. “After a full battery of tests, of course. We take care of your health and your pleasure. By the time you leave the island, you’ll be tanned and fit and more mentally stable than you’ve in your life.”
“You know, that last bit really does kind of make it sound like a cult.”
Ainsley snorted. “How long have we known each other? Trust me, Gemma, if I got brainwashed into a cult, you’d be the very first person to notice. Do I look like a cultist?”
She really didn’t, though Gemma. She looked fit and happy – too happy, but that was just the wine. The only real change Gemma had noticed in Ainsley’s personality was the loss of her sense of entitlement. They’d been shopping earlier in the day, and Ainsley had actually chatted with some of the sales clerks. Normally she’d have treated them like servants.
Gemma bent close and peered into Ainsley’s eyes. “Okay, your pupils aren’t spinning, and you haven’t shaved your head or started wearing funny robes. I guess you’re all right.”
“Damn straight I am! So, are you in? I promise it’ll be the best vacation you ever had.”
“I thought it was a retreat, not a vacation.”
“It’s both! That’s the beauty of it. And since I’d be your host, it would be like we were taking a vacation together, with beautiful scenery, great activities, and some of the hottest guys on the planet.”
“Don’t forget the mystery dragons that may or may not exist.”
“Oh, I can’t forget the dragons,” she said, and grinned. “Now, do you want a chance to fuck Chance, or not?”
“Eww, bad joke, Ainsley. Very bad.”
“Give me a drink. No, sorry, I mean give me a break. It’s the drinks making me tell bad jokes. But come on, Gemma, please tell me you’ll come!”
Gemma sighed. “Okay, I suppose I can take the time off work.”
“That’s my girl!” Ainsley raised her glass. “To Île des Dragons!”
“Or Île des Lizards!”
They clinked glasses and poured themselves another round.


It was almost morning before they said goodnight. Gemma stumbled off to her bedroom singing Chance Finney’s biggest hit. All she knew was the chorus.
Ainsley slipped into the guest bedroom and locked the door behind her. Then she stood listening for several minutes, making sure Gemma wouldn’t come out again. Once she was satisfied, she dropped her mask and pulled out her cell phone. The wine made it difficult to dial, and she had a lot of digits to get through; but she couldn’t put this number in her directory. After three tries, she got through.
The call was picked up on the first ring. “Result?” said a calm male voice.
“Positive,” she answered flatly. Then she ended the call and went to bed.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

The newest #1 movie in the US involves hypnosis and mind control

I's called Get Out,  it was written and directed by Jordan Peele of the brilliant Key and Peele, it's getting five-star reviews, and it's scary as shit. All that, plus you get non-consensual hypnosis that works. What's not to love? Here's a clip.

Oh, and BTW, this clip is very nearly the only funny one in the movie. The plot is mostly serious and scary, and the guy in the blue T-shirt is the only stereotypical black character (There's exactly one stereotypical racist white character too, so I think they're both written that way on purpose). But the guy in the blue T-shirt is also critical to the plot because, like the stoner in Cabin in the Woods, he's the the only one paranoid enough to see what's going on. (But as another BTW, that's the only way Get Out is like Cabin in the Woods. It's not "meta." It's straight-up horror with a side of racial commentary.)

Monday, February 27, 2017

Feedback received and decided upon

A couple of weeks ago I asked readers for feedback on three questions related to two stories I'm currently juggling (A question I'll have to ask myself soon is whether to keep juggling or just work on one till it's finished and then move to the other). I've had lots of input now, so here are the things I've decided.

Let's start with Transfixed Part 2. I said that while I'd originally planned to write it as a Choose Your Own Adventure, I was beginning to feel like I was in over my head. So I asked you all how you'd feel about getting a sequel that was an ordinary novelette instead. Nobody was displeased by that idea, and in fact, it sounds people just mainly wanted to get the book quickly. Well, that's what I want to give you, so we're in agreement. Transfixed 2 will be a novelette and not a CYOA.

Now on to the other story. First - and this relates to a post prior to the "feedback" post - I have an official tittle now. Thanks, Jock! It's going to be called The Power of Positive Slavery, and Jock will get a free copy for gifting me with the idea.

As for my questions about the story, this what I've decided based on the advice of people who know a hell of a lot more than I do:

1. The rare form of lighting will be an LED black light. That's a real light source that would damage human eyes in real life, but I'll handwave a filter that makes it safe.

2. The latex worn by the catsuited slaves will be lubed on both the inside and outside because that allows for maximum mobility and shine. It's also nice to know that latex doesn't get too hot too quickly. Really, folks, no matter what kind of kinky shit I write, the only latex I've ever worn were gloves! I'm glad some of you out there are bolder than I am!

Thanks, as always, to everyone who takes the time to comment. :-)

Monday, February 13, 2017

Feedback needed - really

I have three questions to ask you, and I need lots of answers so I can make the right decisions concerning the two e-books I'm working on now. Really, I do need answers, and I need them to be honest answers. So before I ask, remember that I've set up my blog so that you don't need a Google profile to comment, and you can reply in total anonymity. Now, here are the questions.

1. I need (for a story, not in real life) a kind of light source that's rare but not dangerous - something like an LED black light, except that I looked those up and they can damage your eyes. What I'm looking for doesn't have to change the color of the room it's in, but I don't mind if it does. If you know about light sources, what do you suggest?

2. What does it feel like to wear latex, particular a whole catsuit covering face and all? Do you get hot and sweaty? How long can you wear one before you have to take it off? Do you need to be powdered down or lubed up before you get into one?

3. Due to real-life shit storms, it might take me a very long time to write the Transfixed sequel as a Choose Your Own Adventure, which is what I originally planned and what I said I'd do in the "Afterword" section of the book; but I know the people who bought Part 1 are probably annoyed at having to wait so long for a conclusion. So tell me honestly, how would you feel as a reader of Transfixed, Part 1, if I decided to write Part 2 as an ordinary e-book instead? If you haven't read Part 1, just pretend you have and tell me how you'd feel.

Answering these questions will help me complete my next two stories more quickly, so please do answer. Too often I ask for feedback and get nothing.

Thanks, folks.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Pictures to make your mind wander

In between bouts of writing, I've been binging on Cthulhu mythos stories - which in turn, got me rummaging around Deviant Art in search of Old Ones pictures and and whatever else happened to grab my attention. Here's a fraction of the result.

Some of the pictures below became part of the Call of Cthulhu game, and some just stuck in my head because they're hot. But I'm going to refrain, very intentionally, from giving you any context in this blog post. You can imagine whatever scenario fits your fetish; and if you want to know what the artist really intended, you can click the author links at the bottom of this post. The author above left is Dave Palumbo. In the middle, left-to-right, the artists are Jowie Lim, Felicia Cano, and Thaldir.

 I need to say a bit more about the painting at right, by Donato Giancola. He's not a fetishist (although he does like robots and all the other SF/F tropes most of us enjoy); he's just an excellent artist whom I follow because I love his work. I'm including this picture because it perfectly feeds my fetish without even trying. But in fact, Giancola says in his description of the piece that it was inspired by a George R. R. Martin short story called "The Glass Flower." That intrigued me enough to make me buy the e-book (It's just $1.99); and I'm happy report that the story is excellent, it involves possession (I know some of you are into that), and Giancola's picture really is just "inspired by" the story. It doesn't spoil the plot at all. But ohh, does it makes me think of other ways the story could have gone!

Follow these links to find the pictures on Deviant Art:
Dave Palumbo (picture at the top of this post)
Jowie Lim (first of the three pictures in a row)
Felicia Cano (second of the three pictures in a row)
Thaldir (third of the three pictures in a row)
Donato Giancola (final picture)