October 7th, 2013

Edgar Allan Poe/Raven

Halloween Countdown, Day 7

On this day in 1849, Edgar Allan Poe died at the age of forty under mysterious circumstances.

For more information, read "Mysterious for Evermore" by Matthew Pearl, an article on Poe's death from The Telegraph. Pearl is the author of a fascinating novel about the subject, The Poe Shadow.

My Friend Edgar!


Four years ago, on the occasion of Poe's 200th birthday, I took over the StarShipSofa Audio Science Fiction Magazine to host an hour-long tribute to this pioneer of the short story, luminary of Gothic horror, father of detective fiction, and giant of science fiction. You can listen to the podcast here at the StarShipSofa website, or download it here, or access it via iTunes. If you listen, I hope you enjoy my celebration of Poe's life, works, and legacy!

The following are some of my favorite links about Edgar Allan Poe:
* PoeStories.com: An Exploration of Short Stories by Edgar Allan Poe
* The Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore
* The Poe Museum of Richmond (See my pictures of the museum here.)

In 2011, I visited his final resting place in Baltimore and took these photos.


Edgar



Here, free for adoption, is my narration of Poe's "Mellonta Tauta." If you listen, I hope you enjoy!

Here is an excerpt that alternates between the darkly comic and the truly chilling:

"We lay to a few minutes to ask the cutter some questions, and learned, among other glorious news, that civil war is raging in Africa, while the plague is doing its good work beautifully both in Yurope and Ayesher. Is it not truly remarkable that, before the magnificent light shed upon philosophy by Humanity, the world was accustomed to regard War and Pestilence as calamities? Do you know that prayers were actually offered up in the ancient temples to the end that these evils (!) might not be visited upon mankind? Is it not really difficult to comprehend upon what principle of interest our forefathers acted? Were they so blind as not to perceive that the destruction of a myriad of individuals is only so much positive advantage to the mass!"
- "Mellonta Tauta," Edgar Allan Poe

Read the Complete Short Story: Here.
Re-Animator/Weird

Halloween Countdown, Supplemental

As a follow-up to my earlier countdown post today, I have a few Halloween-friendly news items to share.

* First, I have been a fan of Jeffrey Combs for many years, and his portrayals of Edgar Allan Poe (in television's Black Cat and his one-man show Nevermore) are simply outstanding. I had a chance to talk with him about Poe last year at ConCarolinas, and I thoroughly enjoyed and appreciated his insights into the author. He takes Poe very seriously, and I take this Kickstarter very seriously. Let's make a feature film of Nevermore happen!

Master Horror director Stuart Gordon, brilliant actor Jeffrey Combs, and inspired screenwriter Dennis Paoli -- the team that brought you From Beyond and Re-Animator - team up again to bring you a brand new feature film: NEVERMORE. Visit the Kickstarter campaign.




* In other news, this week's episode of StarShipSofa includes the second of my three-part "Looking Back into Genre History" series that remembers the 125th anniversary of the Autumn of Terror by exploring the ways in which science fiction has wrestled with the mystery of Jack the Ripper. (The first part of the three-part series is here.) If you listen, I hope you enjoy!

* Last but certainly not least, TheOneRing.net's monthly Rewrite Tolkien Contest theme is [insert drum roll here] The Hobbit as written by Edgar Allan Poe. You know you want to take part in this. (Thanks to jan_u_wine and wellinghall.)


"There are few persons, even among the calmest thinkers, who have not occasionally been startled into a vague yet thrilling half-credence in the supernatural..."
- Edgar Allan Poe, "The Mystery of Marie Rogêt"