Welcome to Biting-Edge, a blog shared by authors and vampire experts, Mario Acevedo and Jeanne Stein. We’ll cover urban fantasy, vampires, pop culture, and all things Joss Whedon. Unlike other fantasy blogs, we don’t insist on body cavity searches (unless you ask politely). Snarkiness is most welcome...though we won't promise not to bite back!

Sunday, September 30, 2007
  Tall people smooching
Mario here:

Thursday I got the galley for book 3 in my Felix Gomez series, The Undead Kama Sutra. Sunday morning I planted my butt in a local coffee shop and went through the galley in one marathon sitting. Looks good (the galley, not my butt). I charge you, dear blog stalker, to spread the word. Tell everyone to buy this book when it comes out. March 2008. I'll sponsor a contest for the best Undead Kama Sutra champion. Grand prize: a week on my private island paradise. But first I need to buy that island paradise. That's where you come in. Make those sales and put me where I belong; snug in the lap of luxury.

Friday I attended the launch party for Copper Nickel 8, the literary journal of the University of Colorado at Denver and Health Sciences Center (whew!). The party was held in place that made me feel all brainy and literary just being there, Matter Studio. A couple of the contributing authors dazzled us with readings. Handling the sales of the journal and other cool stuff were Elizabeth, Monet, and Cyndi, shown here holding up a copy of CN8.

Nothing is offical unless it's on a cake.

What's even more important to any literary event than cake is booze. Making sure our livers were properly seasoned were Houdini (and you thought he was dead), Johnny, and Matt the Beer Man (his last name, really). Sharron is on the right, flustered by the overwhelming choices in adult beverage. Beer or beer.

Not only was the crowd smart in the cabeza, but they also dressed smart. At least the women did. Tara got the Mario nod for best shoes and celebrates with a kiss from her boyfriend, Ked.
Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Okay—I know I’m late with my blog today but I just spent two hours trying to find pictures of Viggo Mortensen’s tattoos in the new movie Eastern Promises. I saw it over the weekend and was not only impressed with the nude steam room fight scene (more on that later) but the Russian prison tattoos sported by the characters. This is the only pic I could find that showed anything at all.

Anyway, great flic with lots of action (read that blood, violence and mayhem--my kind of movie.) There's a nude fight scene in a steam room that's quite interesting. I may have to get the DVD when it's released so I can examine it in pause mode, but I digress. Anyway, here's what Mortenson said about the scene:

"Slippery, painful, embarrassing," says Mortensen of the gritty nude punch-up. "I'd be lying if I said it was just another day of work. I knew that it would be at times awkward and a little vulnerable and that it would be painful. Obviously I couldn't wear pads for clear reasons. It wasn't as bad as it could have been but it's not like I was primping in the corner to look as best as possible for the next angle or something!"

Believe me he looked good from every angle.

Which brings me to a tidbit regarding another craggy-faced actor. Daniel Craig.

Evidently, he's buffing up for a nude scene of his own in the next James Bond movie. He says he's willing to do a full-frontal nude shot.I say more power to him! He also admits he's not a fitness nut and the only thing that keeps him motivated (besides the obvious) is his pint of Guinness after each workout. So, let's just imagine that great beach scene in Casino Royale minus the suit:

Lest you think I've gone off the deep end this morning, here's some media news that's not nearly as interesting to ponder as Craig and Mortensen nude, but may be of interest.

For fans of James Marsters: CBS’ “Without a Trace” kicks off its sixth season tomorrow (Thursday) on CBS. James Marsters, Spike on “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Angel,” begins a recurring role as a detective.

A story in today's WSJ says the newest craze to hit Japan is reading and writing novels on cellphones. It's big business--with over six million mobile members buying $200 million dollars worth of book and comic-book services a year. The books are said to be simply plotted and not richly written, but hugely popular. One drawback--a writer who says she's written eight novels on her phone got carried away last month and broke a blood vessel on her right little finger.

Doesn't anyone in Japan have a computer anymore?

And last but certainly not least, at last weekend's RMFW conference, my very good buddy Vicki Pierce showed up with a t-shirt sporting cover of my third book, The Watcher, and the logo: Anna Strong is my hero! I wish this picture showed the tee better, but it was really a thrill for me that she went to the trouble to have it made. To Vicki-- thank you.

Sunday, September 23, 2007
  Who's on top?
Mario here:

Busy weekend for me. The priority was writing chapter one of book 4 in my Felix Gomez vampire detective series. The plot's so secret I don't even know what it is.

It pays to have friends. I just received the ARC for Richelle Mead's new book, Succubus on Top, which went immediately to the top of my TBR pile. So far...wow!

As you can see, this ARC has a plain cover, which I prefer. Makes this seem special. Nowadays, publishers tend to use color covers to make an ARC stand out from the stacks of books that avalanche around the desks of reviewers. Here's the production cover for Succubus on Top:

My sister sent this pic. It's from Powell's City of Books in Portland, OR. Horror starts here and they show my book. What a classy place. Fangs to you.

And in another example of how life always trumps art, I leave you with a photo of America's favorite villain:
Friday, September 21, 2007
  Friday Fun
Mitchell and Webb - Write this..or that..or maybe

Thought I could figure out how to post this YouTube but even CAREFULLY following the directions it was a no go.. so use the link and have a laugh...
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
Mario pretty much summed up the conference. I was busy most of the time with Susan Smith doing our contest dance, but we did manage to find the time to sample the margaritas. I don’t have any pics yet to share, but hopefully by Friday, I may be able to round some up.

Now this sounds cool—British scientist have come up with the “world’s brightest light” to scan documents without having to unfold them. The Times article mentions the system could be used to read unopened parts of the Dead Sea Scrolls and to copy documents which have been damaged. Much more valuable than the self-cooling beer can. although I know a few people who might disagree.

James Frey is back—his new novel, Bright Shiny Morning, has evidently been purchased by Harper. The book is described by the Wall Street Journal as "set in contemporary Los Angeles [it] tracks the lives of various characters from different backgrounds. These include a male movie star, a Mexican maid, and a homeless man from Venice Beach." This time the word “novel” is in prominent display.

And now for some news on the home front. The anthology I’m in, Many Bloody Returns, debuted #30 on the NYT bestseller list. Now contrary to popular belief, I can’t include “NYT Bestselling author” on my covers. However, if everyone goes out and buys a copy and the book climbs its way onto the top 15—THEN it becomes official!

Speaking of MBR, next week,look for An Ice Cold Grave by Charlaine Harris (Berkley, $23.95, 9780425217290/0425217299). It's the third Harper Connelly mystery. The psychic crime fighter must find the killer of several runaway boys.

Some wonderful person nominated Blood Drive for a Night Owl Romance Award. If you’d like to vote, just use the link. It’s my first award nomination!
Sunday, September 16, 2007
  Big shiny congrats to all
The 2007 Colorado Gold Conference is over. What fun and I'm beat. Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers has held the conference for five years at the Renaissance Hotel here in Denver. For us old timers, this is a familiar sight: the escalator from the lobby to the lower conference level.

Huge kudos
to those who made this conference such a success. Conference Chairs: Marne Kirstatter and Vicki Law. Contest Chairs: Susan Mackay Smith and our own Jeanne Stein. President Linda Hull. Janet Lane for winning this year's Jasmine Creswell Award.
Two Amigas: CJ Lyons (kickoff speaker and my-inner-goddess-is-always-smiling) and Margie Lawson (bestest friend to everyone and all around maker of things to happen).

The workshops kept us busy and we built an appetite learning things. Fortunately, the hotel kept our bodies properly nourished.

What better way to wash down all that food than with margaritas!

We had banquets, editor/agent pitch sessions, three days of presentations, but here is where the action was: Room 544, the Hospitality Suite. Besides the laughter and conversation, you could hear our livers drowning.

Two of our designated drinkers, Jeff Shelby and Diana Rowe.

For those who don't know Jeff, here's his best side:

Lastly, two writers who agreed to have their picture taken provided I hid their identities in the Lushes Protection Program: Sex Scenes at Starbucks (an occasional commentor to Biting-Edge), and her accomplice in draining all the liquor in the bar, Sandy (I never drink anything but tap water except at conference where I drink booze until my kidneys beg for mercy).

Let's do it again next year.
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
Thanks, Mario and all who sent congratulations for Blood Drive making the best seller list at Mysterious Galaxy. It means a lot. The anthology, Many Bloody Returns, is out now and doing well, too. I remember someone saying you build an audience one reader at a time and I have some pretty damn good ones! Thank you.

Saw the movie 310 to Yuma this weekend. How can you beat a movie with Christian Bale and Russell Crowe? It was excellent. I never saw the original (my daughter says it’s even better) but I thoroughly enjoyed this one. Then, coincidentally, this article popped up from Cinemablend.com. It named the top 5 modern westerns and guess which movie was #5? Serenity! Here’s a quote: The turmoil between the alliance and the crew of Serenity is wonderfully presented in a way that’s reminiscent of U.S. Marshalls tracking down an old west gang.

Now no movie made before 1990 was considered, which leaves out the best westerns of all time—the spaghetti westerns—but the list is interesting nonetheless. Any of you have a favorite western?

Time Magazine did a list of the 100 Best TV Shows of all Time. Buffy the Vampire Slayer is included. What more can I say?

And something just for fun—Who is the dancing demon in this photograph? If you know, you’re an unapologetic dork fan just like the rest of us…

Mario and I are off to the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers’ Colorado Gold Conference this weekend…well, not exactly off since it’s here in Denver. But we’ll try to post some pictures and I’ll try to keep Mario out of trouble. Good luck with that last one, huh?
Sunday, September 09, 2007
  She's greeeat!
I don't know about where you live but around Denver it sure felt like the first day of autumn. I had to get a blanket for the bed, switch off all the fans, and wear a hoodie for the first time this year. My son said the air reminded him of football practice and he expected to hear the rattle of cleats on the asphalt. To herald the arrival of fall we have this painting titled Autumn by Gary Benfield (notice the lack of a hoodie):

We have something Tony-the-Tiger great to celebrate.

Our own Jeanne Stein is the top paperback bestseller in San Diego's Mysterious Galaxy.

Repeat after me. We're Number One! We're Number One!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007
Hi everybody—Back from a weekend of sprinting back and forth between the Decatur Book Festival and DragonCon. Makes for a full weekend but I can’t help feeling I didn’t really get to enjoy either.Highlights, though, were my panels—at DragonCon with Carrie Vaughn, L.A. Banks (who followed me back to Decatur for an Urban Fantasy panel there,) Susan Sizemore and Holly Black. At Decatur, the panel consisted of L.A. Banks, Fiona Zedde and me. Talented women all.

Of course, at DragonCon there was a Whedon Track. Unfortunately, I didn’t have an opportunity to catch any of it. And James Marsters was in attendance. Here are some great pictures. I never caught up with him to get an autograph, but I did get Juliet Landau’s. Wow—she’s gorgeous in person. At the signing after my panel at Decatur a very nice woman said she had some autographed pictures of James and would send me one. If she does, you’ll hear my whoops of delight all across the US.

Book news: Many Bloody Returns hit the shelves officially yesterday. I heard it was at DragonCon but again, had no opportunity to check it out. Advance sales look pretty good. I’m beginning to wonder if I should have done an Anna Strong story instead of a stand-alone. Oh well, I seem to second guess everything I do in this business. If you have a chance, let me know what you think of the story. I thought I might use the character Sophie in an upcoming Anna book.

B & N
seems to have reversed itself and will now carry the infamous If I Did It. They say it’s because of customer demand. They still insist they won’t promote it. Let’s see…

Looks like there might be a Ripper series. Anthony Stewart Head says BBC had green lighted the project. Now it’s up to Fox. Even rumors that Buffy and Angel might make an appearance in the first episode.

And speaking of BBC, here’s a great promo for Jekyll—I can’t believe we don’t get BBC America on my cable. Maybe SciFi will pick it up the way they have Dr. Who.

No post on Friday. Mario and I are still trying to firm up a schedule. I want to hold another contest. I picked up some great prizes at both ComicCon and DragonCon. We’ll work on it…

Go forth and have fun.
Monday, September 03, 2007
  Summer's Last Hurrah
Mario here:

It's the last weekend of the summer which in Denver is celebrated with the Taste of Colorado. It's the most attended of the city's festivals with a head count close to a half million. Taste lacks the nutty cultural juxtapositions of Cinco de Mayo (the second most highly attended) and the Peoples Fair (a weekend nexus for loonies of every political and religious stripe). What brings folks to Taste is of course food...and giant inflatable pigs:

The vendor booths at Taste offered swag such as rolls of Mentos, Ghirardelli espresso chocolate, and the ever popular bags of kitty litter:

And from Publishers Lunch, we have this:

New Take on Wizard
Also mining the past are Todd McFarlane and Josh Olson, who are working on a "revisionist take" on the Wizard of Oz books for Warner Bros. (which has controlled the rights) and Village Roadshow Pictures. Variety notes: "McFarlane has a vision of Oz that is a dark, edgy and muscular PG-13, without a singing Munchkin in sight. That was clear with a toy line he launched several years ago that featured a buxom Dorothy and Toto reimagined as an oversized snarling warthog. Olson has something a little tamer, and PG, in mind."

McFarlane's theme is that of many in Hollywood these days: "My pitch was 'How do we get people who went to Lord of the Rings to embrace this?' I want to create (an interpretation) that has a 2007 wow factor. You’ve still got Dorothy trapped in an odd place, but she’s much closer to the Ripley from ‘Alien’ than a helpless singing girl."

Sort of:

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