Remembering from 2018 . . .

Some folks no longer with us.

I meant to comment on Harlan Ellison’s passing. A writer who influenced so many people, and probably as much for his never dull, frequently entertaining personality displayed in many public appearances. I was more of a fan in my teen years than when older, but I always enjoyed his comments and just knowing that he was out there.

And, of course, he wrote one of Star Trek‘s greatest episodes:

Also, Steve Ditko. When I was a whippersnapper, I found a torn copy of Doctor Strange Classics in a comic shop, getting it from a reject bunch for something like four-for-a-dollar along with a beat-up Silver Age Tales to Astonish.  Ditko’s surrealist, psychedelic art was mind-boggling, and led me to further joy reading his original Spider-Man stories in Marvel Tales.

Here’s a book-themed (and groovy) look at the weird wonder of the art of Ditko:

And . . . Dolores O’Riordan of the Cranberries. The voice of otherworldly nineties Celtic pop music, and a band that was one of the best things about the nineties:

Rest in peace.

Stan Lee, Rest in Peace

A big, big part of my childhood and those of so many others.

I know I’m not the only one who read “Stan’s Soapbox” in the Marvel Comics “Bullpen Bulletins” and hung on every word like it was cosmic wisdom, at least up to a certain age.  And there was the narration he did for that Spider-Man cartoon in the early ’80s, and all the other appearances.

Since I was such a nerd about reading credits in the comics, I knew that he didn’t write them all by the time I was reading the comics of the late 70s and early 80s, but he was still this benevolent presence in the background of everything Marvel.  And then I found the reprints of old Amazing Spider-Man and others more interesting at some point, and then really discovered Mr. Lee’s talent for cranking these stories out, month after month.  Anyone who can write at that level–regular, little time in between, always entertaining–is a great writer.

And this video takes me back to those days when Stan was Marvel Comics (and see the very insightful writing question from an audience member at 1:30).  Rest in peace, Stan, and Excelsior!

New Short Story: TRANSFIGURATION

Transfiguration - Amazon

Head on over to Amazon and check it out:

The final part of the movie ended eight minutes before class was over, and the teacher spent the time asking everyone if the movie matched how they envisioned it from reading the play, talk that was half-audible from the whirring rewind of the old VHS tape. Brian was buoyed at class being almost over, the comfort of casual conversation going on in the background, and the machine noise as he drew in the folder creases. Soon, the bell rang and they were dismissed. Brian was out the classroom door with his typical energy, into the main hallway, and then climbed the main stairwell to a large window.

The sky was almost black.

He stuck his head out of the partially opened window to see no sun. The darkness covered most of the sky, only a hint of the morning’s blue in the east but the smeared charcoal faded into gray in the west. There the rain was already falling, and soon it would run down in cold jets from a dark silver sky over the school.

“Partly cloudy, chance of rain.”

Brian turned slowly and walked to study hall. It was on the first floor, a short distance with no rush, and all he had to do was descend further downwards.

Copyright 2018 Anders Runestad. All rights reserved.