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Monday, September 29, 2014

Imaginarium 2014 - Review from a Film Festival Queen.

The first annual Imaginarium Convention is over, and we are both exhausted and exhilarated. It was my first convention, so I don't have much to compare it to, but my gut tells me it went extremely well for a first year convention. Word of mouth seems to state the same, so that's quite exciting. We've also heard ravings about how well the convention area was laid out, with most of the panels and events being centered in the same hallway, making it easy to find the room you're looking for. It's so great to hear that so many people enjoyed Imaginarium, and it definitely makes us excited for the coming years.

When we volunteered to help our friend Stephen Zimmer with this event, we had no idea what we were getting ourselves into. We ended up being deemed "King and Queen" of the Film Festival, a title we will gladly be reprising next year and hopefully for many years to come. Working the Film Festival requires late hours as some of the films run until 1 or 2 A.M. but we don't mind at all because it's so great to be able to sit in on some of the films being shown, and to appreciate people's work with them.

In addition to the wonderful authors we met at Imaginarium, we also met some great filmmakers. And there were plenty of awards given out for the Film Festival during the banquet on the final day of the convention (see the winners HERE). But for us, the winner of most memorable moment from the Film Festival definitely goes to our friend and fellow Eastern Kentucky native, Jeffrey Reddick (creator of Final Destination and much more), who sat in on a short film he wrote called "Paralyzed" (Directed by Aaron Sims) and when we experienced some technical difficulties with the film, Jeffrey handled it like a pro, rolling up his sleeves and joining Eric on the floor to help fix the problem. So major kudos to him and his team for that :)

And I also have to mention Amy McCorkle's film "Letters To Daniel" which, in addition to its announced award, also had the best turn-out of the whole weekend. Also, "Scenes From A Gay Marriage" (Written and Directed by Matt Riddlehoover) which won the most awards, and deservedly so. Its characters were so well written and so well portrayed that you could have sworn they were real. And of course Jackie Gamber's short film "America's Got Superpowers" which was an awesome take on the popular reality competition show "America's Got Talent" and had a surprisingly touching theme.

To those filmmakers who we weren't able to sit with for their films, it wasn't because we didn't want to, but we just had so much to do during those times. In addition to running the Film Festival, we also ran errands for Stephen and his crew, opened doors for people with heavy loads, and other various odds and ends like making and holding up banners.

No matter what we were doing, we had a blast, because not only were we honored to be part of the beginning of something as epic as Imaginarium, but just being around so many like-minded and artistic people made everything awesome. You could literally feel the positive vibes in the air, and I think everyone there got the sense of belonging, which is a rare thing to be felt all around. Kudos to Stephen and the rest of the team for making us feel so at home, and for putting this amazing convention together. We really are excited for what's to come and can't wait to see Imaginarium grow even more epic with each coming year. :)

Speaking of coming years, don't forget to join us for Imaginarium 2015! It's gonna be awesome. I'll add the exact dates when they're revealed. Keep an eye out. ;)

I leave you with some photographic highlights from the weekend: 

Some shots of us in our shirts on day one.

On "guard duty" on day one.

Part of the vendor hall.

Watching the table for Hydra Publications.

Story time with T. Lee Harris in the smoking area.

Some shots from the Masquerade Ball on night two.

More shots of us working the Film Festival.

The Awards Banquet on the last night.

  The final post, as promised HERE, & a group hug.

See you at Imaginarium 2015!

Be the lightning, 


Saturday, September 13, 2014

The Imaginarium Convention

You might be wondering...

What is Imaginarium?

The Imaginarium is a convention that will be taking place September 19th through 21st, in Louisville, KY. This is the first year so you may not have heard of it, but if not you will! So I suggest you get in on its awesomeness before it's too late ;)

Who is the Imaginarium for?

This convention is pretty widespread, including great stuff for writers, readers, editors, filmmakers, gamers, publishers, cosplayers... That's right, pretty much everyone. It's like all your favorite conventions wrapped up into one, and centered around all things creative writing.

What is there to do at Imaginarium?

In addition to the great writing panels and guest appearances, the Imaginarium will include a film festival, a gaming room, a masquerade ball, and much more!

How much does it cost?

You can enjoy the entire weekend for $55, or $25 if you just want to come for a day. And if you happen to have a group of 8 or more, the entire weekend is only $35 per person! AND if you have kids ages 12 or under, they get in for FREE! So, convention-wise, it's a pretty good deal. ;)

What am I getting out of it?

If you're a writer, you'll get tons of helpful advice from seasoned authors, and a chance to network with readers and publishers. If you're a reader, you'll get some face-time with some of the coolest authors out there, and the option to pick up some signed books. If you specialize in another field, you'll get to meet new people and have an awesome weekend. And Awesome weekends tend to include unexpected surprises ;)

The hour is nearly upon us, so if you're interested, please register HERE.

Hope to see you there!

Find #Imaginarium on Twitter HERE and on Facebook HERE.

I leave you with a little graphic my husband D. R. Acula made to promote the event. You can find his blog with a lot more cool links on the Imaginarium HERE

Be the lightning,



We had a great first year, which you can see my review and pictures of HERE, and we hope to see you for the next one, this September!

Monday, September 8, 2014

TV Review: The Leftovers - Season One

The Leftovers might be the weirdest, grittiest, most beautiful TV show I've ever seen. Each episode is like its own mini-movie, and I think each episode of the first season has left me feeling the same way - drained, intrigued, and satisfied. 

This show has some of the most gorgeous cinematography I've ever seen, and the entire cast delivers breathtaking performances - from Liv Tyler's astounding tree chopping scene in one of the first episodes, to Ann Dowd's surprisingly passionate first speaking part at the restaurant on their day off, to Carrie Coon's heartbreaking sobs in the final episode of the season, and many more. 

Every character is so believable, and in a way, this sort of dystopian world they inhabit is almost believable too. This might be in part because no one knows what happened yet. We know people disappeared into thin air, we know it wasn't the rapture because not all of the departed were good people, and we suspect some kind of supernatural force but we're not quite sure what that force is.

This mystery is one of the intriguing aspects of the show - I think a lot of people stick with it because above all they just want to find out what happened on that fateful day when they went away. But about half way through season one, you begin to realize that it doesn't really matter what happened, or how it happened, it only matters that it happened. And now the remaining characters are left with so much intensity and confusion and inner turmoil, and I think that more than anything this show is about struggle. It's a look at how different people handle things, and at human nature at its worst, when it's put to the test. 

Now, suddenly, we're no longer sticking around to find out what happened (I have a feeling we may never find out anyway), but now we're sticking around for the experience. It's not about the destination anymore, but the ride. A beautiful, crazy, heartbreaking & mind bending ride that I hope will never end. 

The last episode of the first season definitely had a "this is it" feeling, and I suspect they wrote that episode with the possibility in mind that it might not get a second season, but I've heard that it's already been renewed. I could be wrong, but that is what I've heard. I hope I'm right, because there is so much more to the stories being told on The Leftovers, and so much more to be learned through the struggles of the characters, the brilliant writing, and the experience of not really caring about the destination, but the ride. 

Because in the end,
isn't that all that matters? 

That we're still here. 

And though the ride is bumpy at times,
the view is still so beautiful.

Be the lightning, 
Kylie Jude.



The Leftovers will return for season 2 in October!
Here is the first trailer for season 2: