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Saturday, January 11, 2020

2019 Review / 2020 Preview - M.D. Presley






2019 Favorites




I honestly don’t know how other authors get time to read, and personally only manage a half hour or so before bed on the good days. In terms of books I really enjoyed, there’s Alec Hutson’s The Shadow King, which concluded his Ravening series on a high note. 

Rob J. Hayes’ Never Die was also a highlight, which is probably why it’s doing so well in this year’s SPFBO. 

Unfortunately (or not), I find myself watching TV whenever I have a spare second, so here are some shows that really stuck out to me this year:




She-Ra: Everyone’s all gaga over The Dragon Prince, which is just sort of run of the mill to me, but this show is a gem. Especially the third season, which gets really dark and really weird. There’s generally a dichotomy between “girl and boys” shows, and this one really blurs the line such that I think both can enjoy it. I sure wish shows this good were around when I was a kid.






Carnival Row: Another show that got released in the shadow of another in the form of The Dark Crystal, but I’ve been rooting for this one ever since it showed up a decade ago as a script being passed around Hollywood that everyone swore would never get made. A fairy immigration story with a Lovecraftian murder mystery and maybe some werewolves thrown in? Sign me up.



Gargoyles: The Mandalorian may have snatched up all the attention with Baby Yoda, but the real shining star on Disney+ is this 1990s throwback cartoon featuring the eponymous gargoyles that turn to stone by day and protect NYC after dark. The animation’s a little dated, but damn is the story compelling. How could it not be when they open a children’s show with some genocide (Last Airbender, I’m looking your direction)? The second season ups the ante by delving into Shakespeare by reimagining Macbeth and Puck as series villains, and there are some truly clever plotlines. This show was decades ahead of its time in that it pretty much HAD to be binged to be understood and enjoyed. Also, at least three actors from Star Trek TNG are regulars, so there’s that too.



Sound & Fury: Sturgill Simpson’s fourth album is a doozy, what with an accompanying anime release on Netflix. It can best be described as a post-apocalypse-samurai-Western that’s also a country concept album, but really it’s a love letter to late night 90s MTV, what with all the weirdness that includes a line dancing scene in the middle of a mecha battle. So much crazy genre mashups had me hooked 100%.






Looking ahead to 2020

I’m in the middle of a move so can’t think past the next week, let alone into a new decade. So what it might entail has me stumped. Let’s just say I’m looking for more fantasy to push the boundaries as to what’s popular and acceptable. We’re a genre based upon exploring impossible worlds, so here’s to hoping they get a lot more impossible and weirder as the decade opens up.

On the Horizon for M.D. Presley

Personally, I plan to finish up Sol’s Harvest by releasing The Shattered Sphere in the first half of the year. Then I’m on to a long-gestating non-fiction project examining worldbuilding in the fantasy genre. It’s such an important aspect in assessing success in the fantasy genre, yet we have no unified definition of what it is. I hope to change that by the end of the year. Or at least make an attempt…

About the Author

Never passing up the opportunity to speak about himself in the third person, M.D. Presley is not nearly as clever as he thinks he is. Born and raised in Texas, he spent several years on the East Coast and now waits for the West Coast to shake him loose. His favorite words include defenestrate, callipygian, and Algonquin. The fact that monosyllabic is such a long word keeps him up at night.

His flintlock fantasy series Sol’s Harvest can be found on Amazon and should (hopefully) conclude this year. mybook.to/TWR

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