You Asked, I Answered: The Q&A

Question mark A couple of weeks ago, I suggested we try a Q&A. I know it seems a little corny, but it’s a good way to connect with you and find out what’s on your mind. Your comments and questions provide fuel for stories, blog posts, and even details in the Kari Hunter world. It started with the Vote Your Adventure campaigns we did—your feedback inspired the stories in ways I never dreamed. Sure, your votes directly guided the stories, but it was the additional, often hilarious comments that inspired me to add quirky details I may not have thought of otherwise.

Bottom line: I like connecting with you.

I got a lot of great questions—personal ones as well as book related. And there are a lot, so let’s get started.

Question: I just want to ask how are you doing? (And say I can’t wait for the next book. xx)

Jen: Honestly, I feel awesome. I mean it. A couple of weeks ago, I alluded that the Spouseditor and I made some changes to our lives. It’s given me a better balance and I’m able to make writing a high priority. This is probably the best “head space” I’ve been in in many years, so thanks for asking. And thanks for the excitement about the next book! I’m pretty excited too. It’s really shaping up into something special. And comical.

Question: What kind of car do you drive? Year, model, colour, condition? And if you could have any car what would you buy? (not unplausible if you become a super-novelist)

Jen: I have a dark grey 2009 Toyota Corolla (with a moon roof!) but I don’t drive much—once or twice a month, if that. The Spouseditor and I recently moved into downtown Seattle and we’re both close to our jobs. Plus, the city’s congested and it’s expensive to park. I thought I’d hate giving up my car but the truth is that my stress level has dwindled and I’m infinitely happier now that I don’t have to fight traffic every day.

If I could have any car, what would I buy? Well, in THE FOURTH CHANNEL, Kari owns a red Audi TTS Coupe. Back when I was writing that book, it’s the car I wanted. These days, I don’t really drive, but if a stranger walked up to me and handed me the keys to a brand new Tesla Model S, I wouldn’t complain. I’d hop in and hit the gas… er, electric.

Question: Were the Sci-fi pinups inspired by some strange geek fetish that I may or may not share?

Jen: Hah, no. One day, I was brainstorming blog ideas for someone and I got a weird idea for a zombie-themed pinups post. The person I suggested it to liked it (outwardly, anyway) but they never used it. So, after waiting a few months and not seeing the idea being used, I decided to use it. I liked the idea because it’s funny and nostalgic, and the posts are quick and dirty reads, which makes it ideal for the internet. Sci-Fi Pinups is, by far, my most popular series. So I keep doing it. For you. I’m a woman of the peoples.

Or maybe I’m just a big ham. Dunno. Could go either way.

Question: What do you read/listen/watch to inspire yourself to write?

Jen: The pros say a writer should never wait until they’re inspired or writing would never get done. I find that to be true. So, I just sit down and do it. But I need a special kind of ambience to stay focused. Music can be distracting if it’s not the right kind. Music has an opening, a climax, and an ending. Then there’s a pause, and a new song begins. Distracting. My brain picks up on all that and it’s hard to focus.

So, to keep a steady, consistent mood, I turn on a very long video game soundtrack. I recommend Skyrim and Halo 2. For even more ambience, turn on Simply Rain behind the soundtracks. Hours of uninterrupted bliss.

Question: Is Kari Hunter a character you wanted to write about or is there a quality in her that represents you or what you want to be?

Jen: Kari is the type of character I wanted to write about. For many years, most books I read were about serious characters in serious situations. Even now, many books try to “out-dark” each other. I didn’t want to go that route. I like comedy and I wanted to write a woman who could be strong while being funny. Even if she did want to go the strong, dark route, nothing in her life will allow her to sink into it. It’s hard to keep a straight face when Rambo’s singing crime show theme songs in monotone.

Question: Which fictional character (other than one of your own) would you want to be, and why?

Jen: I got this question quite a bit, in a few different forms. So I gave it a lot of thought and decided I want to be…

Princess Leia

…Princess Leia.

Hear me out on this one. Princess Leia has it all: she’s a Rebel leader, she’s rich, she has Jedi powers, she’s a princess, and she gets to smooch Han Solo. In her spare time, she’s flying around the galaxy, righting wrongs and fighting evil. In the novels, she even gets her own lightsaber!

Lightsabers rock!

Question: What is your favorite non-popular video game?

Jen: Oof. Answering this is like showing you my gaming skeletons in the closet. I’ve loved a few bad games in my time. Bad ones. You know what I’m talking about. After a long day at work, you come home to find the game drunk and pantsless, sleeping on the recliner, surrounded by open beer cans and empty bags of Fritos. You yell and scream and threaten to leave if they don’t shape up. You know you could walk out the door and be with a game that has a 92 Metascore—but they promise they’ll change and treat you better.

But they never do. They’re buggy and lose your saves and all kinds of crap. The controls are bad, and you don’t know why you do it to yourself. But you keep playing…

A few years ago, I played a game called Hellgate: London. It had a lot of promise and did well initially. It even had an online component that my friends and I all played. But the game was buggy, and customer service wasn’t handled well. The fixes were “too little, too late” and the company closed. The servers were shut down as a result.

Hellgate London Wallpaper

But I kept playing. There was something about a near future where demons were in control of the Earth’s surface that appealed to me. I kept playing it and thinking about it. Even though the game was filled with glitches that made me have to start brand new characters after hours of gameplay, something about the idea of the game wouldn’t let me go.

Our Vote Your Adventure world was inspired by it.

Question: What’s your favorite guilty pleasure song?

Jen: Anything by Toto or Lionel Richie. Don’t judge me.

Lionel Richie Hello Lost Poster

Question: So what is Rambo intended for if the hilt does not fit Kari’s hand? Other than singing Mack the Knife, that is.

Jen: If you haven’t yet read THE FOURTH CHANNEL, our intrepid necromancer, Kari, has named all of her knives. Her fourth knife, Rambo, is very different from the first three, so much so that she has never touched it. When it was created, its wide handle and jagged, black blade freaked her out, so she used a pair of tongs to put it into her knife box, and the knife hasn’t moved since. The question is a really good one. Unfortunately, you’re going to have to wait until the next Kari Hunter book. Rambo’s a big part of the plot.

Question: How is Kari really related to Brad? Seems odd that his third channel dad would miss an important thing about his niece considering how close they all are.

Jen: Brad’s mother and Kari’s birth mother are sisters. Brad’s parents divorced when Kari and Brad were young. The divorce was not amicable. Since Rick (Brad’s dad) didn’t want to see his ex or his ex’s sister, he made it a point not to go over to the house where he thought Kari lived. The only time he went was shortly after the incident that made Kari a necromancer. He saw Kari’s tiny bedroom and it was obvious that she had never been there. After that, he’s always been suspicious that something was amiss.

Furthermore, Uncle Rick has never had prolonged physical contact with Kari. He’s gotten the static shock from a quick brush against her skin, but because she’s just his niece, it’s been easy for Kari to avoid contact that would grant him necromancer sight.

Question: May we have a flashback scene where she comes into her power and meets Mikelis? Just cause I love him.

Jen: I love Mikelis too. Sure. I’ll write that for you. Stay tuned.

Question: When is the next Fourth Channel book being released?

Jen: The sequel has no date yet. Sorry. But I can say that I’ve never written anything this quickly before. I’m very excited about the story and I’ll be sure to update you on its progress.

Question: Sometimes I feel that women have monopolized modern fantastic literature. Perhaps I’m being paranoid?

Jen: That’s interesting because I see men dominating fantasy and science fiction. Before releasing THE FOURTH CHANNEL, I was afraid that male readers would see my name and a female protagonist and largely assume it was a “girl book.” Whatever that means. Maybe that the characters were painting each other’s toenails and shoe shopping. Many female authors have been known to use initials or a pseudonym for this very reason. Now that I’ve published, I feel as though self-publishing is changing that attitude. Or maybe it’s just changed my attitude. Readers are looking for good books. Period.

Question: It’s 4am. There’s a knock on your door. You look over at Tom but he’s so deep in sleep that he doesn’t even stir when you elbow him in the ribs. A second knock. You check twitter on your phone. The trending topics in your area are: MurdererKnockingOnDoorsBeforeKillingEveryoneInside AND GenerousMillionaireVisitingHousesAt4amWithGiantCheques

What do you do? WHAT DO YOU DO?!

Jen: Stand on the other side of the door reading the latest Wall Street Journal aloud. The millionaire will be excited. The murderer will fall asleep.


And that concludes our first Q&A! Did I answer your question? If not, leave a comment below and I will answer. You can also connect with me on Twitter and Facebook.

If you’re curious about my comic urban fantasy, THE FOURTH CHANNEL, you can pick up a copy on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Continue reading

Sci-Fi Pinups: Mr. & Miss June 2013

Pin Cushion Sorry that the pinups are a little late, gang. For some reason I thought today was June 30.

In related news, I don’t know how to read a calendar.

And just to remind you, I’m doing a Q&A! Ask me anything you want to know about my comedy urban fantasy series, future book projects, personal things about myself, writing, my cat, general advice… whatever. I’m answering any and all questions unless they’re spoilers of the next Kari Hunter book. Just post them in the comment section below last week’s post, Tweet me, post it on my Facebook page, or send me a note through my contact box in the sidebar.

I couldn’t resist some early questions on Twitter.


Someone even asked me for dinner recommendations! You better believe I delivered.

Questions are due to me by July 5 and the Q&A list will be posted here on the site July 8. So ask away!

Alright now, let’s get down to brass tacks. You came here for hunks and hotties and that’s what you’re going to get!

In case this is your first time joining us for the Sci-Fi Pinups, this is the monthly segment that’s actually monthly when I’m not calendar-inept, and we feature science fiction and fantasy babes that normally don’t get the recognition they deserve. As with all leading ladies and gents, remember—they’re too hot to handle, so look but don’t touch.

Because licking your computer monitor is nasty. Seriously, when was the last time you wiped this off?

And now say hello to our pinups!

Mr. June comes from outer space in the far, far future… where, apparently, they’ve lost the technology to create hair gel. He’s the product of a long breeding program which makes him the sexiest guy on his planet and is the envy of levitating, skin-fungus-plagued rulers everywhere. Mr. June is virile. He’s rich. He’s psychotic. He likes to be shirtless. He’s also royalty, which puts him in control of many things. Just not the spice.

He is…

Fayd - Dune

Feyd-Rautha from Dune!

Mr. June’s turn-ons include metal underpants, going shirtless, and the spice. Turn-offs are House Atreides, the Kwisatz Haderach, and pants.

Here’s a little fan-made video of Feyd. It cracked me up so I must include it:

Should you take Mr. June out for a night on the town, bring a hat. Seriously. Dat hair.

And now for our leading lady!

I hope you can keep up with Miss June because she’s got legs and she knows how to use ’em. As a full-time professional competitive eater and part-time ghost hunter, she’s always on the go, never stopping. And I mean that quite literally. She never stops. Though she’s running her legs and her mouth 24/7, she always looks fine in the big red bow atop her bald head and matching red lipstick. What a lady! She is…

Ms. Pac-Man

Ms. Pac-Man from… You know what? If you don’t know who Ms. Pac-Man is, you’ve been living under a rock. She’s awesome. That’s who she is.

Miss June’s turn-ons include cherries, strawberries, oranges, pretzels, apples, pears, and bananas. Turn-offs are the nights Pac-Man won’t take her dancing.

Miss June isn’t really a movie star, so I’m giving you something better than a clip:

Ms. Pac-Man swag!

Atari - Ms. Pac-ManAtari has a few vintage t-shirts left, if anyone’s interested. Large only. Ah, nostalgia on a lovely sheet of cotton. I like this one, just for its authenticity. Straight from the makers themselves. Get this today before it ends up with the E.T. cartridges.

RedBubble - MsPacMan Shirt! This awesome t-shirt is available through It comes in a bunch of colors and styles, including girly fit and regular/men’s. I’m becoming a big hoarder of geek t-shirts and I would absolutely wear this.

Applique Onesie! Holy crap! For you parents out there, Etsy seller NaptimeInspirations put this adorable applique on a onesie!

Does anyone out there have a kid? Because I will buy this for your mini-geek. It’s that adorable.

There are also a bunch of other Ms. Pac-Man items on Etsy if anyone’s interested, including a cool glass ghost bead necklace, an adorable skirt (I’m not sure I’m brave enough to wear it, but it’s super cute), cupcake toppers, a rad wristlet keychain (yeah, I said “rad”—we’re talking about the 80’s, right?), hand-painted high heels, and more.

I wish there was more swag for you cool dudes out there, but we’re talking about wearing the emblem of a big yellow chick with a bright red bow on her bald noggin. Next month, I’ll offer up some macho swag just for you. I promise.

And in case you’re wondering, no one is paying me to promote their Ms. Pac-Man swag. I just thought it was a fun idea.

If you had a good time with today’s post and want more laughs, pick up my debut novel, THE FOURTH CHANNEL, about a comically bad necromancer and her talking sacrificial knives. Both ebook and paperback are available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Pincushion photo courtesy of Lina-Sydney. Continue reading

Oversharing, Q&A, and the Next Vote Your Adventure

Jen considering oversharing

Previously, I confessed that I’m not comfortable talking about myself. I had a personal blog for a long time, but the things I would write on it were only interesting to my mom. Come to think of it, they may not have been interesting for her, either. Plus, when I share personal things, I feel as if I overshare. There seems to be no point to my personal stories; they are neither entertaining nor informative. I could try to direct the stories so that there’s a lesson at the end, like Aesop’s Fables, but that’s too difficult and takes too long, and I don’t feel that my role in our relationship is to tell you what your morals should be. So, when I sit down to blog, I try to write things that I want to read. Like many folks, I have a full-time office job; comic vignettes help to break up the monotony of my day.

There’s a point to this, so bear with me. This is sort of an apology. My blog doesn’t look like many others, and for that I am fiercely proud and wholly embarrassed at the same time. I’m sure people come here and are immediately confused. Maybe even put off. Of course, there are no rules about blog content, and I’m sure most people don’t have any expectations prior to visiting, but I imagine some are confused or surprised. And for that I’m sorry. Also not sorry.

See, writing a novel takes a long time. It’s a process that involves planning and organization and then soul-crushing deliberation where the content and grammar are vetted by four other people, and that takes even more time…

As someone who longs to entertain and be read, a blog takes that edge off because I can write and publish—rather, the Spouseditor edits and then he hits publish—it’s much more immediate than a novel. The blog keeps me from feeling as if I should compromise the story or quality of the next Kari Hunter novel for the sake of having fiction read right now. This blog is an outlet, and it enables me to take the proper time to give a full novel the time and attention it takes to be fully enjoyable. What does that mean for you? Well, it means satirical articles about G.I. Joe. It’s a little bit weird and a little bit awesome. So, as I said above, I’m sorry. Also, you’re welcome.

However, I don’t want to ignore your requests for information. I want to talk to you about personal things and I like connecting with you. I enjoy it on Twitter because that medium creates a dialogue. I’m good at dialogue. A blog, on the other hand, is mostly a one-sided conversation, and I don’t know what personal things you want to read unless you suggest something.

So we’re going to do a Q&A.

Question mark What do you want to know? Curious about items in THE FOURTH CHANNEL? Questions about Book 2? Questions about me? Ask me anything and I will answer. Disclaimer: May not be the answer you expected. If questions about the Kari Hunter books don’t involve spoilers, I’ll answer as best I can. Otherwise, I may have to be dodgy or just send an answer back privately. Either way, I will respond to you.

The Q&A will be posted on July 8.

The deadline for questions is the end of the day on July 5.

I really want to hear from you, so please send me some questions! You can send questions a few ways:

1. Post it as a comment below

2. Cram it into a Tweet and send it to @JenLKirchner

3. Post a comment on my Facebook page

4. Send me an email, using the contact form in the sidebar

5. Leave a note on Google+

I’m trying to make this easy for you because some of you are probably just as introverted as I am. If that’s the case, you can even make up a pseudonym when you contact me. As long as the name doesn’t exceed a PG rating or contain a spoiler, I will post your question and answer it.

Speaking of the next Kari Hunter book, the writing is going very quickly now. Recently, the Spouseditor and I made some big changes in order to make writing a priority. As a result, I’m about 32,000 words deep into the next book. I can’t begin to tell you how excited I am about the story so far; I want to tell you about it so badly that I’m (figuratively) bursting at the seams. My hope is to be done writing in the next three months so it can go to editors. I know, it’s a long time, but I hope it will be worth it. Now that writing is even more of a priority for me, I expect subsequent books to come more quickly.

In the meantime, we should all be treated to a little fiction. So, we’re reviving an old tradition here on the site:

The Vote Your Adventure is returning.

Homage to Choose Your Adventure For those of you who have never participated in the VYAs before, let me sum up: this site went live on May 5, 2011. My first offering was a web story based on the old Choose Your Own Adventure books that I loved as a kid. Basically, each page has a short story blurb with choices on what the character does next. Some choices end well while others end badly. My web series operated the same way, except that you, the readers, voted on which step the story took next. I gave everyone a few days to read and vote, and then I posted the winning decision plus screen caps of my favorite votes—the comments are often riddled with hilarity and great insight. The following week, I’d post the next step in the story based on the vote.

If you’re interested, you can still read the Vote Your Adventure stories. I should warn you that they’re much different than THE FOURTH CHANNEL. They’re dark, post-apocalyptic, military-themed stories. And they don’t all end well.

The new story will continue in this world, though it won’t have a military theme this time. I’m taking inspiration from The Last Of Us, a video game that’s solely an escort quest. That means you’ll need to get someone from point A to point B safely.

It also means you’ll be unarmed.

In order to make this a little less strenuous, the episodes will be posted every two weeks rather than weekly. (I can’t work on the next Kari Hunter book and go balls-to-the-wall with a weekly VYA without exploding.) You’ll have a week to vote, then I’ll post the results, along with my favorite votes. I might even do some giveaways for participants like I did before. We’ll see. The first chapter will be up on July 21 so mark your calendars and tell your friends.

And be ready to run for your life.

Okay, that’s it. I know that was kind of long and I appreciate you all hanging on until the end. Don’t forget about the Q&A! I want to hear from you; ask me anything you want to know. The deadline for our Q&A is July 5 and the answers will be up on July 8.

And, uh, subscribe to the site. Links are in the sidebar. And pick up a copy of my debut comic urban fantasy, THE FOURTH CHANNEL.

See you guys next week for the June Sci-Fi Pinups! Continue reading

Better with Plissken: Escape from the Black Pearl!

Snake Plissken - Escape from the Black Pearl! It was brought to my attention that we’re way overdue for another Better with Predator segment, where I rewrite an unlikely story or movie by adding Predator. (Many thanks to Wikipedia, whose movie plot entries are incredibly helpful!) At the same time, my partner-in-crime, Angela Wallace, chooses the same story but puts her take on it by My-Little-Pony-ifying it.

Whether we’re improving these stories or not is anyone’s guess, but it’s at least a hell of a good time.

However, since we’re still rocking and rolling along with Snake Plissken Month, I’ve done a little switch on my end. Instead of Predator, we’re dropping Snake Plissken in.

Or hang-gliding him in. Or one-man submersible-ing him in.

You get the picture.

Angela chose the movie this time around, delighting me with the idea of Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl. As soon as she mentioned it, I knew I had to do it for Snake Plissken Month. I mean, he’s got an eye patch—we’d better make use of it. When you’re finished up here, you can head on over to Angela’s blog and take a peek at her Pony-fied version, Friendship is Magic: Pirates of the Caribbean. I’ll link it again at the bottom so you don’t have to go fishing around for the link.


As Governor Weatherby Swann and his young daughter Elizabeth sail to the new prison in Port Royal, Jamiaca, they encounter a burning shipwreck with an unconscious survivor, the young Will Turner. Elizabeth steals the gold medallion the boy is wearing, in order to keep him from being arrested as a pirate. The crew glimpses a ghost ship, the Black Pearl, sailing away from the wreckage.

Eight years later, Commodore Norrington proposes to Elizabeth but before she can respond, her over-tightened flak jacket causes her to faint. She topples into the bay where the medallion, which she wears as a necklace, sends out a signal to the Black Pearl.

Simultaneously, Snake Plissken and Captain Jack Sparrow have just arrived in Port Royal to serve life sentences at the town-turned-maximum-prison—Jack Sparrow for being a pirate and Snake Plissken for looking like one. As they are standing on the dock waiting to be processed, they both see Elizabeth fall into the water. Snake grunts and shrugs, but Sparrow jumps into the water and rescues her, then uses her to negotiate, hoping to be released from the prison. Commodore Norrington agrees to reverse all charges against Sparrow and let him go free. Though Snake tells Sparrow it’s a lie, Sparrow releases Elizabeth and, as Snake predicted, Sparrow is taken into the police base for processing before being released into Port Royal prison.

That night, the Port Royal base is attacked by undead skeleton zombie pirates of the Black Pearl. Elizabeth is kidnapped by the pirates, who sail away.

Will Turner, who loves Elizabeth, strikes a bargain with Jack Sparrow to help him find the Black Pearl and Elizabeth in exchange for freedom. Jack agrees, thinking he can use this opportunity to reclaim the Black Pearl—though he knows he can’t do it alone. As soon as Will unlocks the jail cell, Sparrow explains that he can’t retake the Black Pearl alone. He needs Snake Plissken’s help. The next hour is spent trying to convince Snake Plissken, who doesn’t give a crap about your skinny damsel or your ship, to help.

Plissken Demotivational

Sparrow realizes they’re getting nowhere with Snake so they give up on the negotiation. He and Turner break into the prison kitchen, where they poison Snake’s bread and water. They return after dinnertime to inform Snake that they’ve poisoned him, and he’ll receive the antidote once he’s rescued Elizabeth and helped Sparrow retake the Black Pearl as his own. Snake agrees to help, though he’s addressing Will Turner, and it’s unclear if he means to help Sparrow. Will Turner opens the door and Snake steps outside. He immediately punches Jack Sparrow in the face. Sparrow crumples to the floor. As Snake steps over him, toward the exit, he growls, “Now I’ll help you.” They steal a ship and set sail for an island where Sparrow knows the Black Pearl will make port.

Upon finding the Black Pearl, Snake leads an underwater assault in one-man submersibles. After climbing up onto the Pearl’s deck, they find that the crew has gone into the nearby cave. They rescue Elizabeth and plan to sail away in the Black Pearl, but Elizabeth exposes the zombie pirates’ plans: the medallion she wore was part of a cursed treasure, and whoever steals from it becomes an ugly zombie skeleton. The only way to turn back the curse is to return every coin as well as the blood of everyone who stole the treasure. The pirates of the Black Pearl are working with her would-be fiance Commodore Norrington, who plans to use Elizabeth’s blood to shift the curse from the pirates to everyone inside the Port Royal prison, including Snake and Sparrow, and turn them into the ultimate, unkillable zombie army. Though Elizabeth’s is the last missing coin, her blood did not break the curse. She confesses that she stole the coin from Will Turner years ago, which has turned her into an undead skeleton zombie. Sparrow confirms that Will’s father was a pirate of the Black Pearl who stole the coin and sent it to Will, and even though Will didn’t exactly steal anything and isn’t an undead skeleton zombie, only his blood will stop the curse. While the group debates who did what and whether it will make someone a zombie skeleton by proxy, Snake seethes with fury because he’s seen what being a skeleton zombie will do to his hair, and he will not allow his luscious feathered locks to become so bedraggled. He vows to stop Norrington and the pirates and enact his own justice.

Snake leads his ragtag crew to the crow’s nest, where they take off in hang gliders and fly into the cave, to a big cavern where the cursed treasure was originally found. A futile gunfight ensues until Will Turner is shot, his blood sprays everywhere and lands inside of the treasure chest. Everyone who was an undead skeleton zombie is now turned back into human form, and it becomes an ugly bloodbath. During the fracas, Commodore Norrington steals a coin from the treasure chest and escapes to his ship. Snake pursues him and catches up as Norrington is climbing into an escape pod that will launch him into space and then redirect him to anywhere on earth that he wants to go. Norrington plans on escaping the fight only to come back later and switch the curse to the inmates of Port Royal. Snake shoots him in the leg, preventing him from getting inside the capsule.

Commodore Norrington pleads with Snake, begging him not to throw the coin into the capsule and blow it up, as doing so would prevent the curse from ever being reversed, and because the capsule is the property of the Free World, and worth millions of dollars. Instead, Snake tosses the coin into the capsule and sets it off into space with no return, thus turning everyone on earth into undead skeleton zombies except for those not part of the Free World—including Snake and inmates of New York, Los Angeles, and Port Royal maximum-security prisons.

Snake grunts and welcomes Norrington to the new world. He lights a cigarette and saunters off into the night.


Hope you enjoyed Better with Predator Snake Plissken! Don’t forget to hop over to Angela’s blog for some hilarious My Little Pony pirate action.

If you’re enjoying the site, subscribe for more! The RSS link is in the sidebar, and you can also connect with me on Twitter and Facebook. You can also pick up my debut novel, THE FOURTH CHANNEL, about a comically bad necromancer and her talking sacrificial knives. Continue reading

Mad Mashup/Happy Mother’s Day: Snake Plissken Style

Snake Plissken Mothers Day Card Happy Mother’s Day to all our mothers out there, and happy Snake Plissken Month! I hope everyone’s feathered hair is holding up.

Last week we started a Mad Mashup, which is our version of “Mad Libs.” But in honor of Snake Plissken Month, we Snake-d it.


Anyway, all word submissions needed to be descriptive or honorific of Snake Plissken. If you’re unfamiliar with our gentleman of the month, we just wanted a word you’d identify a badass with.

We got enough words to do something special… something for our kick-ass moms:

A Snake Plissken Mother’s Day Card!

Just print out the little card at the top. On the back, hand-write this thoughtful, loving poem that we mashed up and… snakeified. Snaked? Snake-a-roonied?

Whatever. It’s totally touching and stuff.

Our submitted words are:

Snake Plissken Mad Mashup Word Submissions

You may have noticed that I removed a couple of the submissions. I wasn’t sure how they fit in with the Snake Plissken/badass theme. I did, on the other hand, accept “cheeseburger” because I think Snake would have appreciated a cheeseburger during both of his missions.

And here’s how our Mother’s Day poem/Snake Plissken Mad Mashup came out:

Snake Plissken Poem

Great job everyone! I’m feeling the love and I hope you are too. Happy Mother’s Day to all our moms out there!

If you’re enjoying the site, subscribe for more! The RSS link is in the sidebar, and you can also connect with me on Twitter and Facebook.

You can also pick up my debut novel, THE FOURTH CHANNEL, about a comically bad necromancer and her talking sacrificial knives. Continue reading

Mad Mashup – Snake Plissken Style

Plissken Demotivational Welcome back to Snake Plissken Month, where it’s all Snake, all the time. Which you probably gathered by the name, “Snake Plissken Month.”

I’m so subtle.

Anyway, this week we’re going to continue Snake Plissken Month with a little group participation in our very own Plissken-themed Mad Mashup!

If you’re unfamiliar with the Mad Mashup series, it’s our very own “Mad Libs” style game, but named differently so that I don’t get sued. To play, I choose a book to ‘mash up’ and remove a few words. Without having any insight into the text, you provide a random set of words in the comments below. I insert the words into the text and we all have a good laugh.

This month’s Mad Mashup will be just a tad different, because all your words must be Snake Plissken-inspired words of bad-assery. If you aren’t familiar with Snake Plissken, consider it your homework for later. For now, just come up with a word that’s synonymous with badasses.

The rules: Your submission cannot be more than a single word. And for you wise-acres out there, you can use a hyphenated word, but there can only be one hyphen. Also, the word submissions are first-come, first-served. So, if your requested category is full, you’ll have to submit a word for a different category.

I’m also not going to tell you what story we’ll be mashing up. Consider it a little surprise.

For the Snake Plissken Month Mad Mashup word game, we need the following:

  • 8 nouns
  • 8 verbs
  • 8 adjectives
  • 3 human sounds (PG-rated, please)

I know, not a big selection going on there, but they should be fun since they all need to be Snake-themed. Good luck! The finished product will be up on Monday, May 13. Continue reading

May is Snake Plissken Month… Redux

Snake Plissken Welcome to our second annual Snake Plissken Month! Here on this website, for the month of May, it will be all Snake Plissken! Plissken feathered hair! Plissken stylish eye patches! Plissken pleather outfits! Plissken death basketball!

Wait—call him Snake.

Are you calling him Snake? Good. Now call him Plissken.

He’s fickle like that.

In case you’re wondering what this is all about, last year I was doing a little research for the Sci-Fi Pinups and I got a computer virus from a Snake Plissken fansite. That was when I decided to create a safe haven for all Snake Plissken fans, so Snake Plissken Month was born.

2012 Snake Plissken celebratory offerings:

Ridiculous Fanfic: Escape from Seattle Part 1
Ridiculous Fanfic: Escape from Seattle Part 2
Ridiculous Fanfic: Escape from Seattle Part 3

And a bonus from the amazingly talented and hilarious Alan Edwards, author of the zombie fantasy novel, The Curse of Troius:

The Tactical Guide to Snake Plissken’s Hair

This month we will revel again in the glory that is Snake Plissken. We shall wear feathered hair, hiss at people, sneer a lot, wear gigantic digital watches, and cruise to work in hang gliders.

Okay, maybe not. But we’re still going to have a lot of fun. So rejoice! Snake Plissken Month is here! Let’s get this party started with a little Bangkok Rules:

And a bonus clip, because this makes me laugh every time:

If you’re here because you read my novel, THE FOURTH CHANNEL, sorry for the interruption to the regular blog schedule. In June, I’ll be back with some news and fun extras about the world of Kari Hunter as well as updates on the next book in the series.

Stick around for more SNAKE! Subscribe to the site for more Snake Plissken. You can also follow me on Twitter and Facebook, where I might tweet about Snake. Continue reading

Sci-Fi Pinups: Mr. & Miss April 2013

Pin Cushion Welcome back to another month of science fiction and fantasy pinups! It’s the segment that I continue to write only because you can’t get enough of it.

Seriously. This series is your geek-crack and I am proud to be your geek-crack dealer.

If you’re unfamiliar with this series, it’s the monthly segment where we pull out the heroes and hotties who exhibit the qualities we love in science fiction—like someone with three mutant breasts or a guy who drives a talking car while wearing a speedo or a superhero with a super suit that no one knows how to use. To catch up on previous pinups, check out the link in the sidebar.

Miss April’s a stunner, and I’m not just talking about her right hook. She has long dark hair, dark eyes, and an amazing body that she keeps in shape through rigorous exercises that mainly consist of beating the crap out of people. Though she looks human on the outside, she’s one hundred percent hot alien babe on the inside. When Miss April isn’t roaming around the galaxy with her motley band of escaped convicts, she can be found planetside, beating the crap out of people or torturing them with her biting sarcasm.

She is…

Aeryn Sun

…Aeryn Sun of Farscape!

Miss April enjoys hand-to-hand combat, large weapons, small weapons, medium-sized weapons, leading the charge, and saving the day. If you want to take Miss April out on the town, bring your flak jacket and a few grenades. She loves grenades.

I had a hard time finding good video clips of Miss April; most of what’s available shows goofy lovey-dovey moments and, since we aren’t interested in those, how about a neat fan tribute video?

I had actually never watched Farscape until it was suggested to me in the comments of a previous pinup. Great show. Super fun. Thanks for the suggestion, Candice Bundy!

Mr. April roams around the medieval countryside as a gigantic, lovable mercenary for hire. He’s big. He’s bold. He could crush you with one hand—and he doesn’t even exercise. He’s the friend who will always stand by your side, ready to dunk you in a water barrel to sober you up. When he isn’t working for evil geniuses or carrying around people who are mostly dead, he’s hard at work on his mad rhymes. He is…


…Fezzik from The Princess Bride!

Mr. April enjoys jogging your mind, sportsmanlike conduct, and storming the castle. If you take him out on the town for a hot date, uh… I don’t know. This guy’s just totally lovable. Seriously. Be happy he’s one of the good guys.

And now for some of his lyrical stylings:

Thanks to Angie Wilt for suggesting this month’s Mr. April!

If you have ideas for more pinups, leave a comment below.

If you’re enjoying the site, subscribe for more! The RSS link is in the sidebar, and you can also connect with me on Twitter and Facebook. You can also pick up my debut novel, THE FOURTH CHANNEL, about a comically bad necromancer and her talking sacrificial knives.

Pincushion photo courtesy of Lina-Sydney. Continue reading

Cobra Command Financially Down, But Not Out, Says Evil Empire’s Leadership

G.I. Joe - COBRA LogoSECRET BASE—The Annual Shareholder Meeting at Cobra headquarters was somber as CEO Cobra Commander stood before investors and delivered the bad news: profits were down, and they had won only two battles in the last year. Though the first quarter had shown a significant increase in profits, the next three were riddled with large expenditures and poor management decisions. Analysts cite the determined efforts of Cobra’s evil nemeses, the G.I. Joes, as the key factor in their hardship.

“Real talk, guys,” Cobra Commander said in the midst of his thirty-one slide PowerPoint presentation that detailed their failures. “Winning against the Joes is getting tougher and tougher. They’ve got ‘knowing’ so they’ve already won half the battle. The most we could ever hope to win is the other half.”

But the evil association’s message wasn’t one devoid of hope. Following the dismal financial forecast, Emperor Serpentor took the stage and reiterated the group’s commitment to world domination and defeating “those damned Joes.” He detailed a plan that would put the company back in the black.

“We’re prepared to make sacrifices,” Serpentor told the group, “starting with Bob. You’re toast, pal. We’re also going to cut back on the amount of laser fire during our conflicts. Sure, heavy weapons fire that doesn’t actually hit anything is one of our most effective tactics, but it’s expensive. We’re going to cut back on the laser fire and supplement with laser pointers. I know a guy at a cat toy company who will sell us a bunch for cheap. Third, we’re thinking about moving our headquarters. Destro keeps a close eye on the Internet, and thinks that in Soviet Russia we may defeat the Joes.”

After the formal discussion ended, the Q&A session dissolved into needless finger pointing. “As the leader of this organization, I’m fully aware that the blame for our shortcomings falls solely on the shoulders of one person,” said Cobra Commander, “and that person is Baroness. Wait, did you think I was going to say it’s my fault? Don’t be ridiculous.” The meeting then broke out into a laser gun fight where no one was actually shot.

A high-ranking member of the G.I. Joes who spoke on condition of anonymity said, “We knew Cobra was holding a big meeting, so we sent our best spy to find their secret base and listen in on their plans. Unfortunately our best guy is Snake Eyes and he doesn’t talk, so he couldn’t tell us what was said. I’m sure it was the usual talk about how we suck and they’re going to take over the world. We’re not worried. They don’t even have the biological weapons Doctor Mindbender keeps bragging about. They’re just shell casings loaded with Pop Rocks and Canada Dry.”

A spokesperson for Cobra Command declined to comment. Continue reading

News, Giveaway, and the Kari Hunter Series

I have a few things to tell you; none of it flows in a decent order and I always feel silly talking about myself, so bear with me.

The number one question I’ve been getting these days is if there will be a sequel to THE FOURTH CHANNEL. The answer is yes—very much yes. I’m working on it right now and I’m excited about where the story is going. It starts nearly three months after THE FOURTH CHANNEL ends. It’s a little darker than the first book. Sure, it still contains a lot of the humor of the last book and you’re going to get more of the knives (rejoice!), but it’s feeling just a tad darker than TFC did. Maybe it’s just me?

As we get closer, I’ll be able to tell you more. We’ll do a little Q&A and I’ll answer your questions as best I can without giving away the good stuff. I even have a couple of teasers planned that will lead up to the book release. No title on the new book yet, but when I come up with one, you’ll be the first to know.

If you want to find out when the next book is available, there are a few ways to keep up with me. The primary way is this website. You’ll always get information here first. There’s also my social media links. And now there’s a new way to keep in touch with me—I have a newsletter. The newsletter will be quarterly and will probably be more focused on my book series than my blog is. So if you don’t care about sci-fi pinups or which Star Trek captain is best, but want to keep up with my books, then please sign up for the newsletter.

Also, I’m giving away three paperback copies of THE FOURTH CHANNEL! Hop on over to Goodreads and enter to win. The contest runs for two weeks.

Lastly, I’ve been around on the web. Here are some links in case you missed them:

Tiffany White interviewed me over on her “fabooolous” site. It’s probably the most I’ve ever opened up about myself. What can I say? Tiffany’s my Oprah: Author Jen Kirchner on Science Fiction, Necromancy, and her Talking Knives

Back in January, I wrote a guest article for author and editor Marcy Kennedy. I talked about my inspiration for the characters in THE FOURTH CHANNEL and how much Cinderella sucks: Do You Like A Little Contradiction In Your Characters?

Last, but certainly not least, Angela Wallace interviewed Stubby: Inside the Life of a Talking Necromancer’s Knife

Happy reading! Continue reading