Tuesday, May 17, 2011

SIFF & PaizoCon

My last visit to the Seattle International Film Festival was in 2006, so it's high time I returned. Happily, my fabulous wife, the Queen of Edmonton, gave me a SIFF membership for the holidays. Tomorrow night I head down for three weeks of total movie immersion.

Most literary influences on my writing wormed their way into my brain so long ago that I'm no longer conscious of them until someone else points one out. More often I'm aware of inspiration from a film. Everything from a character name to an eloquent gesture can float up from memory to fix itself onto a story. The names Azra and Malena are two examples.

Sometimes an entire genre influences a book. Prince of Wolves owes more to Tod Browning's Freaks, the entire canon of Universal horror movies, and Christophe Gans's Brotherhood of the Wolf than to any prose fiction. Likewise, the upcoming Master of Devils is my love letter to Chinese fantasy and action movies from the Shaw Brothers and King Hu to Tsui Hark and Zhang Yimou, albeit channeled through the sword & sorcery attitude of Robert E. Howard.

After the movies, I'll attend PaizoCon in nearby Bellevue. I'm sitting in on a couple of panels, and I plan to read from Master of Devils on Friday and Saturday. If no one stops me, I'll read from Chapter Five, revealing the third point-of-view character who joins Radovan and the Count on their latest adventure.

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