October 23rd, 2010

Kristen wants me

They Never Seem to Splurt, Though

You know how there are so many geek romantic comedies set at comic book conventions? Oh, you don't. Well, there's at least one, and it's One Con Glory, by Sarah Kuhn. In this cute little novelette—at under a hundred pages, it's too long to be a short story but too short to be a novella—Julie is covering GinormoCon for a magazine, but she's also a devoted fangirl of Glory Gilmore, a little-remembered character in the short-lived Marvel comic, The Periodic Seven, which is now a hit TV show. Glory means a lot to her, and after losing three action figures to different circumstances, she covets a fourth. She's accompanied by two entertainment website writers, her best friend, Mitch, and uberfanboy Braidbeard.

Part of her duties include interviewing pretty boy Jack Camden, an actor she believes was miscast as Travis Trent in The Periodic Seven. She's not looking forward to the interview, and she's deliberately hostile, but he surprises her by being more than just a pretty boy. Will there be a blooming romance? (Spoiler warning: yes, there will.)

Now, I don't read chicklit or stories where romance is the central focus (The Time Traveler's Wife was about TIME TRAVEL, come on), but I really enjoyed this story. It wasn't sappy or mushy, and it was full of geeky discussions about whether Scott should be with Jean or Emma and romantic displays of Guitar Hero prowess. And in the process, of course Julie learns a little bit about herself, but it feels earned and organic, even in such a short story.

Check out this excerpt for a taste of what the book is like. It's a quick read and very fun, and it's chockfull of nerdiness and geekery. Braidbeard verges on being somewhat of a caricature at times, especially with his overuse of the word "frakking," but in general, the dialogue feels less awkward than that on The Big Bang Theory. I don't think you can find it at stores, but it's now available on Amazon. I think many of you are in the target audience! But, hey, don't take my word for it.

On Thursday, I saw The Sunset Limited, by Cormac McCarthy, which is basically a long one-act (a playlette?) about two men arguing about the meaning of life or something. They don't even have names since they're not really characters. Black is an ex-con who found God in the jailhouse, and White is the crotchety, misanthropic professor he saves from killing himself. It gets kind of repetitive since they don't really seem to make any headway with each other, but there were several bits I found entertaining.

The reason I went, though, was because Black was played by Carl Lumbly! Of Alias and Justice League fame! And also M.A.N.T.I.S., which I remember watching as a kid. I somehow ended up with a front-row seat, so he was a couple yards from me the whole time! Unfortunately, he was speaking with a vernacular accent, so he didn't sound like himself, but he was really good. Even though he flubbed a few lines, he recovered immediately, not even missing a beat.

After a show, I was hanging with some theatre bloggers who had been Tweeting to each other during the show (a sanctioned project, don't worry, they sat in the back row), and the two actors walked by. "Great job!" we said. And there was Carl Lumbly, in the lobby! Talking to some people! Then the house lights flashed to shoo us out, and when I walked into the lobby, Carl went to talk with someone he clearly knew, so I didn't want to bother him. And my friends were leaving, and I didn't want to awkwardly hang around to meet/fanboy Carl Lumbly, even though I totally wanted to and get a picture with him and be a total dork. But I didn't.

Hey! Do you have some extra money lying around? Why not help out my oldest LJ friend, foresthouse, so she can continue to see? She just had keratoconus eye surgery on Thursday, and the hospital totally miscommunicated the terms of payment, and now she has to come up with $3000 by the end of October. Thankfully, she already has $1000 from cleolinda-organized PayPal donations. But now you can participate in a charity fandom auction at foresthouseeyes (she'll still need $4000 for the other eye). There are tons of awesome items up for bid, including a book signed by Wil Wheaton and fandom-inspired earrings including Howl's earrings from Howl's Moving Castle. You get awesome stuff, and foresthouse gets to continue seeing. Everybody wins!