Book Drops Next Week

Last year as I was freelancing, temping, taking an evening computer class and planning a wedding, I squeezed in writing a joke book for Random House.

My former DC Comics co-worker gave me a call asked if I was interested, and at first I thought there was no way I could do this. And then I remembered I was getting married, sucked it up and started writing.

Who knows you might have seen me on the 6 train cracking myself up as I jumped from one gig to another. From there I cashed the checks, made revisions and forgot all about this project until my Google Alert went off. It told me that my name showed up somewhere on the web and at first I just thought that another one of my namesakes did something stupid. To my great surprise it was a listing for the book. Its a crazy feeling when you search a book site and your name pops up.

9781524719753_p0_v1_s550x406This was the craziest thing I’ve ever written, so I need to thank a few people. First on the list my editor Frank J. Berrios for giving me this shot. Thanks to artist Erik Doescher, who I’ve never met but did a great job bringing life to my super stab at humor. My niece and nephew for being my beta testers, I also dedicated it to them. To all my friends and family that pre-ordered my first published book. My Mother cuz you have to thank Moms, but really for supporting, if not fully understanding my love of 4 color characters.

My last thank you goes to my then fiancée, now wife Sharon for slowing my roll when I compared myself to Morrison and Heinlein. I’ll still expect my name in the next round of Pulitzer nominations and now I have proof that I’m the funniest cat I know.

DC Super Friends Joke Book can be found at:

And please rate it on GoodReads.com.

 

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Top 5 of 2016

With all the passing’s of celebrities, family and friends, a crazy election, and injustice still an issue in this country, 2016 could be looked at as one of the worst years in a long time, but I won’t look at it that way as I had some great times and life changing moments. Here are my Top 5 of 2016.

5. Black Comic Book Day

CYy4MmNUoAM18Hf The annual event of Bleeks and Blurds, held at the Schomburg Center in Harlem, NY, is filled with talks and vendors of color in the comic book field. This free gathering continues to grow in influence and spreading the word that there are comics out there for us.  Black Comic Book Day Pictures Here

4. Civil War and Luke Cage

black-panther-civil-warCaptain America: Civil War – My second favorite Marvel movie had one of the best super powered battles since Revenge of the Sith, introduced Spider-man into the Marvel cinematic universe, but the most important reason for making the list was the debut of the Black Panther on the big screen. Also this year was one of the best written of the Marvel shows Luke Cage. Amazing cast, dynamic dialog & humor, and a banging soundtrack made this one for the books.

3. Kobayashi Maru

StarFleetExperienceIf the name sounds familiar it’s because the Kobayashi Maru is the famed test for Starfleet cadets and earlier this year I was able to show how I had the right stuff. For the full details of my exam experience click on my article written for BlackSciFi.com Kobayashi Maru.

2. Star Trek Mission

swu2yaccfr7azok3jtu2mo_iaiepnnttidabuyhcymua1e_wmkk8w7kkecnrqn6e6bvspoqpmnwqvczfdxl-hpdb770qrmxrahlumkkikixzab0byaw530-h329-pStar Trek Mission – The 50th Anniversary to celebrate the legend that is Star Trek, I went full out trek, battled Klingons in space, represented DS9 on a panel, met Q, and sat in the Captain’s chair. For the full details of my personal Trek read my piece on BlackSciFi.com Star Trek Mission.

 

1. The Wedding of the Century

396394bf10d4478fb720c458affe81adAnd of course I couldn’t close out my Top 5 list with out the most important event of my life. Getting married to my Sharon Carter. You can tell she gets me by the Christmas gift she got me.

2016 is just the beginning for us.

2015 Year in Review

As the year comes to a close, here is a look back at some of my creative, professional and personal high points of 2015.

Big Daddy Kane and the Juice Crew

Summerstage is a New York institution, every year throughout the five boroughs, the NY Parks Department presents free concerts and performances for the people in all five boroughs, with Central Park’s Ramsey Field as the main stage. The headliner for that day was Big daddy Kane and let me tell you the crowd got hyped when the Symphony started and then went on to lose its mind as he brought out the entire Juice crew to perform it. What makes this moment so special is that to the crowds knowledge the Symphony had never been preformed live.

DC Comics Heads West

One of the the biggest publishers in the comic book industry packed up and moved to California. As I haven’t worked there in over 15 years it didn’t affect me outside of the people that I’m still friends with, but I still had to go to the place where it all started for me as an intern at Milestone.

Black Fantastic 2015: AfroFuturism Comes to Harlem

The folks at BlackSci-Fi.com needed help covering events in New York. Some emails and a phone call later I was helping them cover the world of Blerds here in NY. My first full article Black Fantastic 2015 Afrofuturism Comes to Harlem can be found on their website.

Brooklyn Brewery Defender Beer

For all the details of this event click here.

New York Comic Con

For my full reports again go to BlackSci-Fi.com or click on the Comic Con links for Thursday/Friday and Saturday/Sunday

NY Winterfest/NY Jedi

Leading up to the opening of The Force Awakens I did another article for the good peoples at BlackSci-Fi.com about the New York Jedi, a stage combat troupe. For a bit of research I was able to watch them perform during NY Winterfest held at Resorts World Casino, as well as get to hear Nichelle Nichols, the original Lt. Uhura from Star Trek, speak about her time on the show and advice for young folk starting out as an entertainer. To learn more about the NY Jedi, read my article The Force is Strong with The New York Jedi.

And speaking of The Force Awakens, I wanted to love it, I truly did. Yeah it was fun, but it was just ok. I am disappointed not because it was bad, but because after 30 plus years, it wasn’t as great as most of us had hoped. Hopefully the nostalgia of the original movies has been expunged and J.J. can move on to making new stories with these new characters.

Celebrities are People too

I normally don’t step in front of the camera but over this year I had to, as I ran into these talented individuals. From left to right; author Suzan-Lori Parks, Brewmaster Garrett Oliver, author/activist Junot Díaz, and Master Chef Marcus Samuelsson.

Unicorns are Real

FistFullofArt.logoOn the personal front of this years events, my mother had open heart surgery to fix an artery  which helps her heart pump better, many thanks to the Doctors and Staff at Mount Sanai Hospital for their excellent work.

I also got my hands on an IPad, which has helped me be a shitload more productive in my creative life, conducting interviews and having more of a presence online. The new logo was mostly done with Adobe Draw.

Lastly, I found someone crazy enough to say yes to spending the rest of their life with me and getting all my stuff when I die, so I know now that Unicorns are real.

Happy New Year, follow me on twitter @GCarmona3 and look for more in 2016. Live long, and prosper in the New Year.

3 Days of the Comic Con Part – III

Saturday – Day 3, the big one.

The crowds are enormous, the lines are seemingly endless and the costumes are crazy, fun and amazing.

20141011_182548Stars, comics, books, clothes, this is the day to geek hunt.

Had an extra $100 bucks and needed that critical autograph of Captain Picard and were willing to line up for an hour or two, then you were in luck. Got that super cool statue of Galactus, hey its was only $300. Was your favorite artist selling pages for $150 or higher, then I hate you cuz there were a gang of things I wanted but could not justify to the Lady.

But hate is for another post.

For me it was more about the cosplayers, show floor, a Star Trek panel and Black Dynamite, more on that soon.

20141011_174228For me I could never do it so gods bless Cosplayers. They’re a breed of geek that isn’t afraid to show that love. It’s easy for me to go wear an x-large t-shirt and call it a day, but it takes true passion and creativity to design and make a Skeletor costume or Voltron. Spend 2 hours on the makeup for a Two-Face costume. Find a group of friends to dress as the different shapes in Tetris or help guide you as your Sauron get-up didn’t have the best visibility, something to fix next year. I was really bummed I didn’t get a picture with Ivy DoomKitty, just keep missing her, and if you don’t know her google her quick. Passion, creativity and courage.

20141011_175516Tired of you favorite hero dying, being replaced and then coming back or your favorite storyline from 20 years ago being rehashed, then the Independent Artists that cover the rest of the floor and Artist Alley is where you should have been looking. This is where you would have found new talent working hard to get your attention and more important, your money. They are the small self-publishers with ideas and art that have a rough edge and yet speak to you. There are too many folks to spotlight but next year take a moment to look around and see what’s really the next new thing.

My last two “big” moments.

20141011_200112fixTo this day, whenever I get on an elevator I say Bridge, if you’re a fan of Star Trek then you know what I’m talking about and why I had to make it to the Star Trek at 50: From the Cage to Today panel. Moderated by Access Hollywood film critic Scott Mantz, the panel consisted of journalist Ed Gross, actress Chase Masterson, who played Lyta on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Star Trek author David Mack and from the web series Star Trek Continues, actor Vic Mignogna. Full of anecdotes of failed Trek dates, childhood nerdery and why Star Trek endures, the panel was warm and genuine in relating their love of Trek.

20141011_144909But as much as I love Trek, the Black Dynamite hour was the highlight of my con. For the second season of Black Dynamite, Adult Swim hosted a press hour featuring the cast; Michael J. White, Tommy Davidson, Kym Whitley, Byron Minns, and executive producer Carl Jones. As  part of my gig helping DJ Blackicon1, I had the privilege to sit in on this round table interview session with these awesome folks. We learned about the genesis of the movie, cartoon and what the cast has in store for this season. (Also learned that they have nothing to do with the comic.) And for the record, Honey Bee is good to go for “The List.”

20141011_160045fixAnd those ladies and gentlemen are my New York Comic Con 2014 memories. A whirlwind of running from panel to signing to event to giveaway, sometime all in the same hour. My only real regret was in not seeing as many of my people and catching up. Unfortunately I was unable to attend the last day of NYCC but after meeting Kym Whitley, I was good.

Here’s to NYCC 2015.

3 Days of the Comic Con – Part II

DSCF0390Friday – Day 2 of NYCC was redemption day, my MacArthur returns, my I’ll be back, my Return of the Jedi. With more panels to check out, I was able to make 4 out of 6, in Baseball terms I had a great day at the plate.

Starting with the Marvel 75th Anniversary opening panel, I was in the presence of Marvel luminaries; Len Wein, Chris Claremont, Louise Simonson, Walt Simonson, Rick Leonardi, Fabian Nicieza and moderated by Marvel editor Mike Marts. The panelist spoke on their time at Marvel, the creation of characters like Wolverine and Apocalypse and the rise of the crossover events. The best quote from the group was Mr. Simonson “I’m an old guy, I don’t care.” As to what he doesn’t care about, well what is said at Comic Con stays at Comic Con so no ones feelings get hurt.

IMG_20141010_120456My next stop was the I’m DMC I Can Draw!” The Artists of Darryl Makes Comics. A new graphic novel from Hip-hop icon Darryl DMC McDaniels from the legendary group Run-DMC. Promised at last years NYCC, DMC and crew make good on their promise of a Hip-hop hero for all generations.

DSCF0405That was followed up by the Women of Color in Comics: Race, Gender and the Comic Book Medium panel moderated by comic mogul Regine Sawyer, creator/writer of Ice Witch and the Rippers. This panel spoke about the changing face of the comic book industry, the importance in representing all of its audience and sense of invisibility that some of the panelist had to fight in the path to becoming comic creators.

DSCF0464My last panel stop was the Hip-Hop & Comics: Cultures Combining. A mix of music icons like Pete Rock and Large Professor and comic creators Khary Randolph and Ronald Wimberly, et al. This group discussed the similarities of the two genre; both being fusions of other genres and its creation of other identities and alias on stage and in print. The most interesting comparison made by the panel was that of artists and rappers being modern-day ronin.

20141010_115104Day 2 counting the cosplayers, comic haul and quick picture with Brian Michael Bendis, I was batting over 600. Day 3 you’re next.

DSCF0445DSCF0423

3 Days of the Comic Con – Part I

IMG_20141009_100822Yes I know New York Comic Con is four days, but that is another post.

If you’ve never been to Comic Con or any comic convention, think of it like a high priced parade, circus and bazaar rolled up under one roof. A multi day marathon where you have to pace yourself so you can maximize your experience.

Thursday – Day one is usually a small crowd made up of VIP’s, 4-Day pass holders and the Press, of which I was a representative. Thanks to DJ Blackicon1 of WHCR radio and RhythmAndSoulRadio.com, for giving me the gig as his producer/AV technical person. Thanks being said, Thursdays are easy walks as the vendors and artist wrap up any last minute prep as the ramp up for the big crowds on Friday and Saturday. This year started off with the biggest Thursday crowd I’ve ever seen, not use to long lines for panels or signings on day one.

Some of the standout moments were the unveiling of the Batman Forever stamp from DC Entertainment and the United States Post Service. How to Train Your Dragon 2 VR game, a short “ride” on the back of a dragon with 360º visuals, immersive sounds and varying winds. And my personal favorite, an advance purchase of David Mack’s new Star Trek novel Section 31: Disavowed, with the awesome inscription of “Don’t get the clap” signed by Mr. Mack.

Outside of those few hits, I had a lot of misses, specifically the panels. I missed every one that I wanted to go to and when I finally got my schedule problems together, my body betrayed me. End of day one.