My buddy Darby shared concept artist Robin Olausson’s work with me and I had to post it here. It has that blend of grimy realism with a sharp pop of color that I absolutely love ( if you read Stars you’d know why.) Check out a few of Robin’s pieces below (click on them to see ’em bigger) or check out all his work over on his deviantART page. Good stuff.
If you follow my Pinterest Boards or have read The Stars Were Right you know I love epic megalopolis cityscapes. When I came across this piece from Nivanh Chanthara I had to share it here and figured it’d be great visual inspiration for someone out there. (Some of his work already appears in my board for Stars.) There’s something so otherworldly yet ultimately approachable about his work, both futuristic yet grounded. It’s good stuff. Check out his latest work on Deviant Art or see a larger version of “Babel” here.
I love cityscapes. Those of you who have read “The Stars Were Right” will know instantly why I am attracted to these concept pieces by Gustavo Mendonca for the now canceled Star Wars 1313 video game. There’s something in these three pieces that captures a seedy and gritty part of a sci-fi city while still remaining grounded and feeling like people live there. (Something missing from the prequels, if you ask me.) It’s a shame this game will never get to see the light of day. These even more over on Gustavo Mendonca’s portfolio I would encourage you to take a look. As always click any of the following to see them larger:
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There’s plenty of writers on the internet who user their blogging platform to dish out advice on writing or focus on the craft. While that is all well and good, I’ve intentionally chosen to do something a little different with my blog. For several years, among the book updates, pleas for reviews, and general news—I’ve been writing several reoccurring series about all manner of things. Fake swearing, my books, plants, riverboats, history, the list is large and full of interesting things.
In this post, I’ve collected all my ongoing series and have provided links so you can peruse the various categories—I even offer starting suggestions. So, if you’re looking for something a bit different than your standard author-blog content, consider starting with one of these…
Frequency: When they’re ready
Category: Bell Forging Cycle lore
Current Number of posts: Three
Start with: Faiths and Creeds of Lovat
It’s always fun to explore the backstory of a series. I love extending some of the lore and legend that surrounds my novels. I’m also a fan of PBS and Marty Stouffer’s Wild America. That all came together for Wild Territories, a series about the extended lore of my books. Currently, there’s only a handful of posts, but with Gleam Upon the Waves coming soon, I’ll have many more on the way.
Category: The natural world is gross
Current Number of posts: Nine
Start with: The Clathrus Archeri
Nature is a wild and weird place, in this series, I take a look at the more unusual bits of the earth’s flora. Generally, it’s pretty gross, sometimes it’s disturbing, but it’s always fascinating to see what sort of bizarre adaptations exist. Sometimes that feeling of disgust can come from the most unexpected places.
Current Number of posts: Sixteen
Start with: Mork & Mindy/Starsiege: Tribes
The English language is a stupid language. It evolves, steals, shifts and absorbs, and it never looks the same across centuries. Slang is often the driver of this drift. Raunch Reviews is a series about slang, particularly, profanity. Not real profanity, but speculative swearing. Authors often try to incorporate original, innovative forms of profanity into our own fantastical works as a way to expand the worlds we build. Sometimes we’re successful. Often we’re not.
Current Number of posts: Ten
Start with: A Riverboat’s Menu
Researching history for my big ol’ project Coal Belly has given me insight into bits and bobs of history and the details surrounding riverboats—stuff I never learned in school. In these posts, I share my findings, focusing in on the people or technology that made these vessels so unique and sharing a plethora of photos from dusty old archives.
Frequency: Monthly (for 2019, at least)
Current Number of posts: Nineteen
Start with: #NoBadMaps
This started as a project to help fantasy indie authors develop their own maps for their books and has grown into something much more. Now, eleven brush sets and several tutorials later #NoBadMaps has become something greater, and it’s exciting to see people using these in their work.
Current Number of posts: Eleven
Start with: Yuri Shwedoff
I’ve been a graphic designer for nearly two decades now; I’m drawn to visual mediums. Often, I come across an artist’s work, be it paintings, concept art, or digital drawings that enliven me creatively. In this series, I share the work of artists who’s work I have found inspiring, perhaps they’ll inspire you as well.
Current Number of posts: One
Start with: Watching History 1
When I was a kid, my favorite TV channel was the History Channel. But in recent year, the History Channel has eschewed history in favor of scripted and reality programming. It’s a bummer. Thankfully, the internet has stepped in. There are all sorts of amazing creatives who run YouTube channels with a focus on making history come alive. In here, I share my favorites.
Category: Cosmic Horror Gifts
Current Number of posts: Five
Start with: The 2019 Lovecraft-Inspired Holiday Gift Guide
For the last six years, I’ve been assembling a highly-curated list of cosmic horror goodies that are perfect for yourself or the cosmic horror fan in your life. Books, Games, Music, Apparel, Housewares and a whole lot more! Loads of goodies worth checking out around the holidays or… at any time of the year, really.
I’m really proud of the work I’ve been doing. It’s been nice to work on blog posts in between writing sessions. Keeps me on my toes, lets me explore different concepts, and I think it makes my books better. Hopefully, you’ll find something entertaining or eye-opening among this list.
Have a question, comment, or want to drop me a line? Leave a comment below, or visit the Contact K. M. Alexander page for a list of handy ways you can reach out.
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“…it had come from a mysterious inner realm beneath the red-litten world — a black realm of peculiar-sensed beings which had no light at all, but which had had great civilisations and mighty gods…”
— H. P. Lovecraft & Zealia Bishop, The Mound
Tomorrow, The Bell Forging Cycle, Book III: Red Litten World arrives. Are you so freakin’ excited? I am! This book has been a labor of love and it feels great to get it out into the world. I really hope you have a much fun reading it as I had writing it. So now, with less than twenty-four hours remaining, what to do? Here are a few ideas to pass the time until the official release:
- Read the Red Litten World Prologue →
- Listen to the Red Litten World soundtrack →
- Refamiliarize yourself with the Map of the Known Territories →
- Check out my Red Litten World visual inspiration Pinterest Board →
- Add Red Litten World to your “Want to Read” list on Goodreads →
- Tweet and tell your friends about Red Litten World →
Tomorrow we’ll brave the cold and return to the narrow streets of Lovat. I’ll see you in the warrens, roaders.