Category Archives: The Guild

50K Blog – A Few of my Favorite Things

This is a Worldbuilders blog.

Over the last couple years, I’ve been cautious about the donation goals I set for Worldbuilders. I set my sights on a goal I’m pretty sure we can hit, and only after we get there do I bump up the target number on our donation thermometer. Some years I’ve done this eight or nine times.

I do it this way because back in 2008 when I started all this, I thought to myself, “I wonder if I could get people to donate 5000 dollars if I gave away prizes and offered to match donations?”

When I raised that much in just a couple of days, I was stunned. So I moved it up to $10,000 dollars, worrying that I was overstepping myself, not really believing that we could raise that much….

Three years and 600,000 dollars later, I still feel the same way. Every year I find myself thinking, “Will publishers help out again? Will authors care enough to send me books? Will people tweet and link and spread the word to their friends? Will geeks of all creeds and nations step up to the plate one more time?”

Then it all comes together, and I’m full of stunned, warm-fuzzy joy all over again.

This year, I decided to try something different. Rather than move our donation goal around all higgledy-piggledy, I decided to set some target levels. Something we could shoot for as a team. Then, if people are awesome enough to help me hit those goals, I’d put extra stuff into the fundraiser as a way to thank everyone for contributing.

We hit our first goal of 50,000 last Friday, so today you get the first of these blogs. I’ve got four more planned, each with increasingly cool additions to the fundraiser.

This is the one I like to think of as the AV blog. Where I share some of my favorite non-book media with with y’all.

  • A complete DVD set of Buffy and Angel.

Over the years, I’ve made no secret of my love for Joss Whedon. I started watching Buffy seriously in 2002, right when I was seriously starting revision on The Name of the Wind. Watching this series changed how I thought about storytelling, and the tricks I learned from it taught me a lot about plot and characterization.

Simply said, I think this is the finest television show ever produced. So I’m adding it to the prize lottery.

  • Two DVD sets of Red Dwarf including Back to Earth: The Director’s Cut.

I started watching Red Dwarf way back in the day. Back when it was on VHS tapes, and you couldn’t find copies for love nor money in the US.

This is the full eight seasons and the recent three-part: Back to Earth.

In my opinion, you aren’t a real sci-fi geek if you haven’t watched this. It’s one of the classics. Best of all, because the show relies on the cleverness of the writing rather than special effects, it holds up very well these days even though the first season was more than 20 years ago.

  • Two DVD sets of Firefly.

I will never get over the cancellation of Firefly. Not in a hundred years. And I meant what I said earlier in the year when I wrote an open letter to Nathan Fillion.

If you don’t like this series, odds are we can’t be friends. I’m sorry. That’s just the way it is.

  • Two DVD sets of Dollhouse.

Some people didn’t like Dollhouse. Then again, some people are idiots who drink their own pee.

[P.S. If y’all in the marketing department at Fox would like to use this as a promotional quote for the series, feel free. Just spell my name right.]
  • One audio cd of Telling Tales by Neil Gaiman.

This is one of the CD’s that you can get from Dreamhaven. It’s one of the earlier recordings of Neil Gaiman reading his own work. Good stuff.

  • One audio cd of Speaking in Tongues by Neil Gaiman.

Like the above, but different. If you catch my meaning.

  • One copy of Warning: Contains Language by Neil Gaiman.

This is a two-CD set also features music by Dave McKean and the Flash girls. It features Gaiman reading poems and stories from Angels and Visitations.

As an interesting aside, in the liner notes, it reads:

Unauthorized Copying of this CD is not only forbidden, but will prey upon your conscience, spoil your sleep, destroy your complexion, and eventually will wind up turning you into the kind of person who drinks methylated spirits out of a bottle hidden in a brown paper bag and who lives under bridges, burps noxiously, and prays day and night for release from the unsupportable burden their life has become. We thought you’d appreciate the warning.

  • Three audio cds of 3 doz Poems read by Garrison Keillor from The Writer’s Almanac.

Some people think that I hate poetry, not realizing, perhaps, that Kvothe and I are actually two different people.

Believe it or not, we are separate entities with different thoughts and emotions. Other telltale differences include hair color: Mine is brown. His is red. He is mostly a fictional character, and I am mostly real. He is a better singer, while I am a better kisser.

We also radically differ on our opinions of poetry. He has an irrational loathing of it, while I myself quite enjoy it.

Well…. some of it. The good stuff.

This is the good stuff. Lovely poems selected and read by America’s greatest living storyteller: Garrison Keillor.

  • Two audio collections of Good Poems by Garrison Keillor.

You can also tell that these are good poems. Because, well, it says so right there: Good Poems. You can’t get much clearer than that.

This is a 4 CD set, containing a marvelous selection of poetry read by a number of wonderful readers, including Keillor himself. Honestly, I would listen to the man read a phone book. Getting to hear him read some of the finest poetry ever is just a bonus.

  • One set of The First and Second Seasons of Flight of the Conchords and an audio cd of The Distant Future.

I loved Flight of the Conchords before they were cool. If you haven’t watched their HBO series, you really need to.

  • Five copies of The Adventures of Sexton Blake.

I raved about this BBC Audio production last year on the blog.

And you know what? Everything I said about it then is just as true today. I listened to this a couple weeks ago and laughed my metaphorical ass off. If anything, I think it’s funnier the 20th time around.

  • A copy of The Ultimate David Sedaris Box Set.

While Garrison Keillor is my favorite living storyteller. David Sedaris takes a close second place.

I only discovered him a couple years ago when someone recommended I listen to “Six to Eight Black men.”

They were really insistent, so I looked it up on Youtube just to shut them up about it.

The next day I went out and bought this box set, which contains 20 CD worth of David Sedaris reading the entirety of Me Talk Pretty One Day, Naked, Holidays on Ice, Barrel Fever and Other Stories, and Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim.

I’ve been a fan of The Guild since back in 2008 when I interviewed Felicia Day and we became BFFs.

Because I love spreading the word about cool indi geekery like this, I picked up several sets of the first two seasons of The Guild when I was at San Diego ComicCon with the sole purpose of giving them away to people and getting them hooked on the series.

Felicia was nice enough to sign them for me. She’s just an all-around nice person.

*     *     *

Remember, you for every 10 dollars you donate on the Worldbuilders Team Page, you get a chance to win everything here, not to mention the hundreds of other books that have already been donated.

What’s more, if you donate before January 31st of 2012, Worldbuilders will match 50% of your donation.

Also, every dollar donated brings us closer to $100,000. Once we hit that, I’ll post up another blog with more personal additions to the fundraiser.

And lastly, don’t forget about the auctions Worldbuilders is running right now. Some of them will be ending soon…

Spread the word…

pat

Also posted in buffy, Felicia Day, Firefly, Joss Whedon, Worldbuilders 2011 | By Pat21 Responses

Something to brighten your geeky day…

So, I’m back from GenCon. And despite the fact that I washed my hands like Lady Macbeth the whole time, I somehow managed to get sick.

Ordinarily, I’m okay with this. It’s one of the risks of attending conventions. Sometimes you get stuck on a panel where you don’t fit in. Sometimes you get trapped in a conversation and have to listen to a guy tell you about his 15th level half-elven ranger/assassin.

And sometimes, if you’re unlucky enough to have me as your arch-nemesis, you get a death threat in your fortune cookie….

… Sometimes you get a cold. It’s all part of the game.

But this time it sucks more than usual. I did Worldcon and GenCon back-to-back this year, so I’ve been away from home for almost two weeks solid. However, because I got sick the day before I came home, I cannot have a joyeux homecoming complete with passionate kissings from Sarah.

No. It is bad for a pregnant lady to get sick. That means when I returned from the airport, Sarah greeted me at the door with a firm handshake and a pat on the head.

Don’t get me wrong. It was a good handshake. But even the best of handshakes cannot help but fall far short of passionate.

So I sit at my computer, sick, kissless, and trying to catch up on 500 unanswered e-mails. What can I possibly find that will lift my spirits?

This:

Yes, Felicia Day is all kinds of awesome. You had to know that already. What this video really did was firmly cement my love for Sandeep Parikh and Jeff Lewis.

Midwest side, my boys. Represent.

pat

Also posted in conventions, Felicia Day, videos | By Pat49 Responses

San Diego and The Legend of Neil

So last night I was writing up a blog about my embarrassing adventures out at San Diego Comic-Con. It was a good blog, chock full of me making an ass of myself.

Then, just as I was finishing it, my computer decided that 3:00 AM is the *perfect* time to auto-update. Shutting down and erasing the blog and several e-mails I was in the middle of.

Needless to say, I quickly became a pillar of incandescent rage. I’m glad nothing else was going on at three in the morning because this was the sort of anger that easily could have led to an Ovid-style metamorphosis. I was so angry that if something would have bit me during that first fifteen minutes, I would have manifested super powers and gone on a fucking rampage.

Eventually that blog will rise from the ashes, but for now the pain is still too close to the surface. So instead, I’d like to share one of my current geeky pleasures with you.

Ready? Here we go.

There were a lot of things I didn’t get to do out at Comic-con. I didn’t get to see Neil Gaiman or Joss Whedon. I didn’t get to see the preview of the new Tron movie or go to any of the Firefly panels. Those panels were too full, and I’m not cool enough to hang with the beautiful people.

But I did have a good time. And one of the main things that made the trip worthwhile was the fact that I got to touch base with Felicia Day and the rest of the cast of The Guild as shown here in Exhibit A:

(Click to Embiggen)

It’s well-known that I have a bit of a fanboy crush on Felicia Day. But that’s nothing out of the ordinary. Any proper geek is morally obliged to have feelings for her. Aside from the fact that she was in both Dr. Horrible and Buffy, Felicia writes and produces The Guild. Plus she’s good with math. And a gamer. And a musician. Anyone who claims they don’t have a bit of a crush on her is just a fucking liar.

That said, the subtle subtext of this picture is harder to see. Specifically, it’s the fanish crush I have for another member of The Guild cast: Sandeep Parikh.

(That’s supposed to be a heart, by the way.)

For those of you are tragically out of the loop, Sandeep plays Zaboo in the Guild. But not only does he possess brilliant comedic timing and an enviable magic carpet. He writes and produces his own web series: The Legend of Neil.

Anyway, the story goes like this. Sunday I hit The Guild booth to buy some signed copies of season 1 and 2 to use for prizes in this year’s Heifer Fundraiser.

Felicia recognizes me, smiles, and introduces me to everyone as that author guy who wrote that book. (I’m paraphrasing here, she was much more eloquent.)

That’s when Sandeep looks up at me and says that he really liked my book. I look at him and I tell him that he is seriously funny and that I’m a geek for Legend of Neil. (I’m paraphrasing here too, I’m pretty sure I cussed a bit for emphasis. )

Our eyes met. Everything went quiet for a moment. We had a magical moment of shared geekery that might have eventually led to a hug…. but unfortunately there was a table in the way. Plus the two of us might be too manly for that sort of thing, anyway.

Now don’t get me wrong. I love The Guild. But in terms of pure irreverent humor, The Legend of Neil is hard to beat. Plus Felicia plays the Fairy in episode three. Even if you never played Zelda, you’ll laugh your ass off.

Seriously. Check it out. Here’s a link. (Get it? Zelda? Link?)

More convention stories soon…

pat

Also posted in Felicia Day, my terrible wrath, recommendations | By Pat39 Responses
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