Call Me Voicemael

from Paste

Call Me Ishmael: The Phenomenon Revolutionizing How We Talk About Books

By Emelia Fredlick

Call Me Ishmael: The Phenomenon Revolutionizing How We Talk About Books

“Call me Ishmael.”

It’s one of the most recognizable opening sentences in literature (right up there with “every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way” and “it was the best of times, it was the worst of times”). And now, the iconic phrase has gained a new life as a multimedia phenomenon.

Call Me Ishmael celebrates the power of literature by giving a person the chance to literally “call Ishmael” and share a story about how a book impacted their life. Many calls are then transcribed and posted on, becoming tales that go far beyond traditional book reviews. Titles featured range from The Time Traveler’s Wife to Pajama Time, from Maus to The Catcher in the Rye.

The stories people share are funny, sad, poignant and deeply human, which creator Logan Smalley says is the point. He calls the resulting narrative “an enhanced, evolved and beautiful picture of humanity.”

[ click to continue reading at PASTE ]

No More Ball-peen Hammers, No More Batons: BREAKING THE CODE

from Pioneer Press

Former Hells Angel and cop who chased him share their unlikely friendship

By Kristi Belcamino

Former Hennepin County Sheriff’s Captain Chris Omodt, left, collaborated with Pat Matter, former president of the Minneapolis Hells Angels, to writeFormer Hennepin County Sheriff’s Captain Chris Omodt, left, collaborated with Pat Matter, former president of the Minneapolis Hells Angels, to write “Breaking the Code.” (Pioneer Press: Ginger Pinson)

Considered the “godfather” of the Minneapolis Hells Angels, Pat Matter knew three things in life were true:

“When you love someone, you get hurt. … When you’re real, everyone hates you for it. And when you trust, you get killed.”

And yet, Matter found an unlikely man to trust: Chris Omodt — the Hennepin County cop who’d been after him for years.

Two decades after the men first heard of each other, they’re telling the story of their unlikely alliance.

Their co-written book, “Breaking the Code” (self-published and available Friday), tells the tale of how their lives intersected, giving a no-holds-barred glimpse into the world of biker gangs and the investigators who go after them.

[ click to continue reading at ]

” I later went down to the [HarperCollins] booth…”


Saturday at Comic-Con – The Great, The New and The Tasty

McClain panel 1


A Weekly Column with J. Torrey McClain

– I may have missed the “Saga” panel at 1 pm, but I caught Brian K. Vaughn and Fiona Staples during the “Strong Female Characters” panel two hours later in the same room.  June Brigman, Colleen Coover, Sara Mayhew, Jimmy Palmiotti, Amanda Conner, Paul Tobin, Vaughn and Staples talked about what it takes to make strong female characters, how they approach it and listed some of their current favorites.  The story that will last with me though came from the moderator, Maggie Thompson.  She told the story of her husband reading to their daughter a run of “Fantastic Four” every night before bed.  As a gift for their daughter when she was away in college they gave her a bound collection of a great many of those same stories.  When she received them and started to read the stories, she angrily called her mom and yelled that these were not the stories her father had read to her.  It turns out that her father had read her all of Reed Richard’s lines as the words said by Sue Storm.  He didn’t want the only female superhero in the story to be the one that fades and hides.

– I returned to Donovan’s in San Diego to visit some friends and once again got to enjoy some of their fine food.  I had the three sliders and after a lunch of only a Snickers bar in between panels (but I’ll have you know, it truly satisfied – now Mars, please send me a free box), those burgers hit the spot.

– I paid my respects in person to the player and the man of San Diego baseball, Tony Gwynn.

[ click to read full post at ]

Books Rule Comic-Con Yeah!

from Publisher’s Weekly

No Lack of Major Prose Houses at Comic-Con

By Rich Shivener

From samplers and author panels to signings and galleys of science fiction and fantasy novels, major book publishers such as Penguin Random House and HarperCollins are once again investing heavily in promotional materials for the five days of Comic-Con International, held at the San Diego Convention Center. The annual pop-culture convention draws more than 130,000 attendees and offers programming related to comics, film, books and related media. Book publishers see it as an incredible promotional platform.

Comic-con may celebrate comics but the fans are on the lookout for books and related media of all kinds. Over the weekend, HarperCollins and its partners are set to preview an interactive, multimedia project based on writer James Frey’s Endgame trilogy, which chronicles teens hunting for ancient keys that could save the world. At its core, the project is an augmented reality game that allows players, using their smartphones, to scavenge for items around Comic-Con. Endgame is also getting the film treatment by 20th Century Fox. Frey, HarperCollins, Google’s Niantic Labs and 20th Century Fox collaborated on the project, and they’re planning panels, signings, access codes to games.

Comic-Con is a fitting place to launch the project because of its media convergence, says Sandee Roston, executive director of publicity of HarperCollins Children’s Books, the division that publishes the Endgame series.

“The innovative mobile game adds interactive real-world experiences to Endgame, merging story with social activation to create a fully immersive world,” Roston told PW on Friday.

[ click to continue reading at Publisher’s Weekly ]

We’re off to never never land…

from The WOW Report

The 21 Pics That Will Make You Wish You Were at Comic-Con Right Now


OK. DEEP BREATH. Let me put my nerd googles on and see if I can identify all these Comic-Con cosplayers. (And a huge thank you to our intrepid reporter Michael Roha for the pics!)

cosplay Comic Con

Spidey and the Human Torch (sort of half-assing that wing, though, aren’t ya, kid?)

cosplay Comic Con


[ click to view all the beautiful weirdness at The WOW Report ]


from The New York Obersver

Levenbutt Goes Ass-Backwards All Over NYC

Jen Selter has nothing on Jeremy Levenbach.

(Photo via @Levenbutt Instagram)

(Photo via @Levenbutt Instagram)

In what is perhaps the greatest utilization of social media ever, Jeremy Levenbach (a.k.a. @Levenbutt) has been Instagramming his early morning, bare-bottomed misadventures all over the city since mid-2012.

“The first one was taken on my old roof in the East Village,” Mr. Levenbach said. “I texted it to a bunch of friends. They liked it. I did a few more and then started posting them to Instagram.”

Since then, Mr. Levenbach, who takes his friends along to capture the butt shots, has amassed over 2,000 followers on Instagram.

[ click to continue reading at The Observer ]

Black Swan Fear

from The Fiscal Times

Market ‘Black Swan’ Fear at Record High

BY , The Fiscal Times

iStockphoto/The Fiscal Times

After last Thursday’s volatility surge, driven by the horrific missile strike against Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 and fresh violence between Israel and the Palestinians, the stock market has calmed down. Large cap issues in particularly seem largely unfazed by all this, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average not suffering a meaningful close below its 20-day moving average since April.

Moreover, the Dow finished last Friday with its 11th straight weekly gain — the second longest winning streak of the bull market to date. Bidding stocks up into the weekend is a classic sign of confidence, since it assumes that nothing will go wrong in during the two days the market is closed.

One way to interpret this is that while most investors are very, very complacent now, many are growing more fearful about the future. In other words, fears of a “Black Swan” event are increasing.

[ click to read full article at The Fiscal Times ]

Giant Rubber Duck Gone Missing In The Global Bathtub

from artnet

Giant Rubber Duck Vanishes in Chinese Flood

Hendrik Hansson

Florentijn Hofman, Rubber Duck (2011), Auckland, New Zealand. Photo: courtesy the artist.

Florentijn Hofman, Rubber Duck (2011),
Auckland, New Zealand. Photo: courtesy the artist.

A giant rubber duck designed by Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman has disappeared amid heavy storms in China’s southwestern Guiyang City, the Wall Street Journal reports. The 54-foot-tall, 2000 pound  inflatable artwork was perched upon a floating metal platform, tethered to the bottom of the Nanming river by steel wires.

The work has toured the world since 2007 and has been on display in the Netherlands, Brazil, Taiwan, Japan and Australia, drawing millions of spectators along the way. The sculpture’s tour, entitled Spreading Joy Around the World represents the union of people, according to the artist. “We’re one family and all the waters in the world is our global bathtub,” Hofman previously told the Guardian.

[ click to continue reading at ]

THR: James Frey’s ENDGAME… to call it only a book would be vastly oversimplifying things.

from The Hollywood Reporter

Comic-Con: James Frey to Introduce ‘Endgame’ Universe With Panel, Puzzle, Interactive Game (Exclusive)

by Rebecca Ford

James Frey End Game The Calling - P 2014

Frey’s upcoming YA book, which has interactive components and is being developed into a film, will be promoted with a tie-in to the popular augmented reality game Ingress.

Endgame is  James Frey’s upcoming book, but to call it only a book would be vastly oversimplifying things.

While the first novel will hit stores Oct. 7, Frey’s project is made up of the books (a planned trilogy), e-books, a puzzle, a game, a treasure hunt and an upcoming movie. The first YA book, set in the near present day, follows 12 teens as catastrophic events lead them on a worldwide search for three ancient keys that will save not only their bloodlines but the world.

“Endgame was always conceived of and designed and created to be this pretty vast universe,” says Frey. “The idea was that we would build everything before it came out. We’d be proactive in creating the universe instead of reactive.”

[ click to continue reading at The Hollywood Reporter ]

Lord Of The Dance

from The New York Observer

Gina Gibney, Virtual Unknown, Becomes Power Broker of Contemporary Dance

Dibney, Gibney? “Who is this woman?”


Gina Gibney Photo: Whitney Browne

On the night of May 14, a small group of dancers were smoking outside a fundraiser in downtown Manhattan. As they discussed the work of various underappreciated choreographers, attention was suddenly turned to a short redheaded woman who had just exited the event and was walking away. “That’s Gina Gibney?” asked Connor Voss, a startled young dancer. Yes, the group confirmed, it was. Mr. Voss watched Ms. Gibney round the street corner. “Fund me, please?” he said in her direction.

Mr. Voss is not the only one asking: Ms. Gibney is currently one of contemporary dance’s most powerful figures in New York. The center of her new influence is 280 Broadway, a two-story building just north of City Hall on which she signed a lease in January. Ms. Gibney now has 17 studios, three theaters, and 51,000 square feet under her control. This past year she received millions of dollars in donations to help her run it all. The Connor Vosses of the city turn their heads when she walks by.

Beloved spaces like Joyce SoHo and the Trisha Brown dance facility have closed; many others have had to move or shrink. Since the early ’90s, Ms. Gibney estimates, the death toll around Union Square alone includes 20 venues where she once performed.

[ click to continue reading at The Observer ]

Charlie Haden Gone

from The LA Times

Appreciation: Jazz musician Charlie Haden spoke for beauty


Charlie HadenCharlie Haden founded the Cal Arts jazz program in 1982. His instruction made an impact on generations of jazz artists around the country, including Ravi Coltrane and Ralph Alessi. (Tom Copi)

I’d probably only been covering jazz for the Los Angeles Times for a year or so when the phone rang at my desk and on the other end was Charlie Haden.

For a half-second, I was terrified. Was this how I was going to find out that the tiny voice in my head, the one that plagues so many writers, was right all along? Was Charlie Haden, an unquestionable music giant who contributed to a skyscraper’s worth of immortal jazz recordings, the one who finally figured out I was a fraud?

Of course, that wasn’t the nature of this phone call — or, for that matter, Charlie Haden. Instead, we talked about music. He spoke with a joyful, bebop-like cadence that pushed against his recognizably thin voice — a wispy reminder of the bulbar polio that afflicted him as a child and eventually claimed his life Friday at age 76.

[ click to continue reading at ]

Endgame: The Calling – 2 p.m., Room 7AB

from The Hollywood Reporter

Comic-Con: Highlights From the Film Lineup

by Borys Kit, Rebecca Ford

UPDATING: The studios will bring a slew of world-saving heroes, new footage and a few surprises to Hall H beginning on July 23.

Comic-Con heads back to San Diego beginning on July 23, with more than 120,000 geeks, cosplayers, and film and TV fans invading the convention center for comics, swag and first looks at some of their favorite upcoming films.

Most of the studios are planning to show off footage from the more genre-oriented part of their slates, bring some big stars to the stage and throw in a few surprises.
Here, The Hollywood Reporter breaks down all the film highlights hitting San Diego. Some of the information is official, while some of it is just rumor. Heck, even the official schedule says “TBD” under some studios’ entries. After all, flying in stars and making sure footage from movies that are still in production dazzles isn’t easy; thus studios sometimes find themselves juggling until almost the very end.
Check back for updates as the Con nears.


Endgame: The Calling – 2 p.m., Room 7AB
Author James Frey will speak about his new YA book Endgame: The Calling (out Oct. 7), while producer Wyck Godfrey will talk about the upcoming Fox movie. John Hanke, leader of Google’s Niantic Labs and creator of Google Maps, will discuss the augmented-reality game Google is crafting based on Endgame, and puzzlemaster Mat Laibowitz will talk about the puzzle in the book.

Rick Hincks’ World Cup

from artnet

Artist Captures Every Detail of the World Cup’s Biggest Plays

Sarah Cascone

Rick Hincks. Photo: courtesy Rick Hincks.

Rick Hincks.
Photo: Courtesy Rick Hincks.

If you’re looking for World Cup-themed art that truly captures your obsessive need to replay each and every goal and crucial play over and over, reviewing multiple angles to truly experience the match, British graphic designer Rick Hincks has you covered. As reported by the Huffington Post, Hincks, a big-time fan of the Manchester City club, has created a series of elegantly simple posters (available for $20) that capture the movement of the ball and the players during key plays of important games.

Since beginning the series in November, Hincks has covered both historic past matches and major plays in the 2014 World Cup currently headed for a Germany-Argentina final. The purely graphic images feature just two colors, marking the players’ positions by their numbers, and the ball’s trajectory as it approaches the goal, bouncing, ricocheting, and being passed and shot.

[ click to continue reading at ]

Crazy Huge-ass Hole Emerges At The End Of The World

from The Telegraph

Mysterious giant hole appears in Siberia

A team of Scientists travel to the site of a huge crater in Northern Russia to investigate this unusual geographical occurrence

A huge unexplained crater has appeared in Siberia, Northern Russia.

The Gas rich area where the hole was discovered – which is the main production area for Russian gas supplies to Europe – is called Yamal which translates to ”end of the world”.

The strange emergence of the hole has resulted in internet theories ranging from a possible UFO landing to a large meteor striking the earth.

[ click to continue reading at The Telegraph ]

Art In The Land of Assad

from Prospect Magazine

Syria speaks: Art from the frontline

A new generation of Syrian artists, cartoonists, photographers and writers has emerged from the region’s bitter conflict

by Malu Halasa

Our Saigon execution, Khalil Younes, 2011, 40x 30cm, Ink on PaperOur Saigon execution, Khalil Younes, 2011, 40x 30cm, Ink on Paper

An alternative revolution is taking place in Syria, while the three-year long conflict between rebel forces and President Bashar al-Assad rages on. Its weapons are not sectarian violence or chemical warfare but spray paint, cameras, pen, ink and digital illustration. For Syrian artists, filmmakers and writers, creativity has become the first line of defence against violence and tyranny.

Since the civil war began in 2011, there has been an outpouring of art and expression across all levels of Syrian society, from small towns to its war-battered second city Aleppo. This work challenges the increasing violence on all sides, which has left more than 162,000 people dead and nearly half the country’s population displaced.

A new generation of underground Syrian dissident artists, writers and thinkers has emerged—a movement that is gaining international recognition for its aesthetics of resistance. The British Museum recently announced the creation of a new archive of Syrian art at a discussion entitled “Behind the Headlines: A Revolution in Syrian Art.” And this month, graffiti stencils of Syrian martyrs will be included in the Victoria and Albert Museum’s exhibition Disobedient Objects, a history of protest through objects.

[ click to continue reading at Prospect ]

iOS Ingress

from ARGnet

Google Rolls Out Ingress to iOS Devices

By Michael Andersen


In November 2012, Google introduced its Ingress scanner app to the Google Play store. And for almost two years, the central point of interaction for Google’s deeply immersive alternate reality game has been an Android exclusive. That changes today: with the release of Ingress‘s scanner app to the iTunes Store, the world of Ingress has officially rolled out on iOS devices.

The Ingress scanner app asks players to join the green Enlightened or blue Resistance faction in a battle for control over portals tied to real world landmarks. The game has a sizeable player base within the Android community. Over 12,000 players have gathered for the game’s frequent live events in cities across the globe so far in 2014, and the game boasts over 4 million downloads. With the expansion into iOS devices, an influx of new players is likely.

Ingress‘ long-awaited transition to the iOS platform isn’t the only major update the Niantic Project team have been teasing. Earlier this year, HarperCollins announced a partnership with Google’s Niantic Labs to produce a similar mobile game for Android and iOS devices tied to James Frey’s forthcoming young adult series, Endgame. The first book in the series will be released October 7th: and while Niantic Project’s mobile app is set to launch that same day, many of Endgame‘s characters have started becoming active on social media following a series of meteorite impacts on June 11th, kicking off the narrative. Ingress‘ recent release on iOS devices will likely help inform the development of its Endgame counterpart.

[ click to read full article at ]

Hef Turns The Whole Issue Over To Terry

from Jezebel

Playboy Set to Release an Issue Shot Entirely by Terry Richardson

by Kate Dries

Playboy Set to Release an Issue Shot Entirely by Terry Richardson

While some commercial and editorial clients are distancing themselves from Terry Richardson, others are celebrating their relationship with the photographer-slash-sexual harasser. Playboymagazine plans to release a 100-page special issue shot by their “great partner” Richardson called California Dreamin’ in February of next year. (Images NSFW.)

Playboy has worked with Richardson before; he most recently shot the 2014 Diesel calendar that came with their Kate Moss 60th anniversary issue, posting behind the scenes photos of their offices on his blog from that shoot last August. He was also responsible for a 2009 cover of the magazine.

On Friday, Richardson teased a tease of the spread in Playboy‘s July/August 2014 issue on his blog, which says it’s supposed to come out in September. When asked for details about the issue, a spokeswoman emailed Jezebel the following:

[ click to continue reading at Jezebel ]

The Last Ramone Gone

from The LA Times

Tommy Ramone created an essential punk rock beat

The RamonesThe Ramones are shown in 1978, from left: Johnny, Dee Dee, Tommy and Joey. Tommy, the last remaining original member of the seminal punk band, died on Friday. (Los Angeles Times)


If it’s true, as punk band the Slits have argued, that “in the beginning there was rhythm,” then Tommy Ramone’s drum pound marked a new day rising. The original drummer for seminal New York punk band the Ramones, Tommy, born Erdelyi Tamas, died Friday at age 65 after a long battle with cancer, but his basic, urgent contribution to popular music over the course of the band’s first three albums remains wildly alive.

Any time you hear a punk band tearing through a three-minute jam, the drummer in the back is likely echoing a no-nonsense beat that Tommy helped codify. If you’ve ever sung along to the Ramones’ “I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend,” you’re repeating lines that Tommy wrote. Struck by the sonic force of the Ramones? The drummer co-produced those early records and more — including Redd Kross’s “Neurotica” and the Replacements’ “Pleased to Meet Me.”

Born in an age of endless solos and weird prog-rock time signatures, the Ramones ditched the mid-’70s pretense and ego-heavy musicianly indulgence in favor of face-punch brevity in three-minute, fast-paced sprints such as “Blitzkrieg Bop,” “Teenage Lobotomy,” “Beat on the Brat” and “Judy Is a Punk.”

On these tracks and more, what’s notable about Tommy’s drumming is how vital yet invisible he remains. You can’t imagine the songs without him, but he so effectively vanishes to become the rudder that few would have pegged him as essential to the Ramones’ sound.

The same could be said about Tommy’s role in the band’s early success. He wrote the Ramones’ first press release, in which he verbalized their simple but ingenious philosophy.

[ click to continue reading at ]