Chilling Tales Podcast

It’s a little past midnight in the middle of winter. I’m working third shift at a local store, bored out of my skull. By then I’ve listened to every podcast I normally would, heard a few audiobooks at least 3 times each, and I’m realizing that a motivation playlist probably needs more than a dozen songs on it. Silence isn’t an option either, with the same 80’s to mid-00’s music blasting over the PA system every night. It’s kind of annoying getting Rick Rolled at work most nights, let me tell you. One of the last books I’d listened to, being focused on hauntings andRead More →

It was 31 October 2014. My younger brother and I were in the middle of our college years. No real activities outside of classes and friends, mostly staying in at home. Nothing really exciting happening, no hero to meet, no event to attend. Calm and quiet homefolk, taking time to relax after classes. Our mom texts us: “I got you tickets to Comic Con, I figured you guys might enjoy it!!!” What. We went, obviously. Comic Con is one of those huge events that no geek wants to miss. Thing is, this was Columbus Comic Con. What exciting stuff could we run into here? ThisRead More →

A nerd, a wrestler, a lagomorph, and a heavy machine gunner get together for a game of poker… No, this isn’t the setup to a weird joke. This is the backdrop for one of the wackiest, weirdest, and best game studios active today: Telltale Games. Sam and Max, The Wolf Among Us, The Walking Dead, Homestar Runner, Bone, Monkey Island, and on and on. These properties and more have been remade and/or presented by Telltale into some of the best ever narrative games. From character writing to storytelling, adaptations to new series, Telltale’s pedigree is noticeable and not to be taken lightly. And many of their games stillRead More →

Do me a favor and take a look at this screen for a second. No tricks, promise. What do you see? A fancy banner for the site, a couple other linked articles, maybe a picture. Ok, fair enough. But what else do you see, covering most of the page? Words. Sometimes it’s hard to stop and notice them. A stop sign is recognized by the red octagon, a company by its mascot, a bar by the neon and cigarette smoke. Words often get overlooked, even when their presence is important. Lyrics are drowned out by a song’s overpowering beat, a book gets adapted into aRead More →

With the popularity of franchises like The Hunger Games, DayZ, and PlayerUnknown’s Battleground, the battle royale genre has gained incredible traction over the last few years. The idea of many against one and the rise to the top is nothing new in storytelling. But what makes this specific end of the spectrum so special? Competition, conflict, uncertainty, paranoia, and survival, much like my typical Thursday night, are the core tenants of this genre. And, like my usual Thursday, it can leave you guessing as to what might happen right up until the end. So let’s jump into the narrative shallow-to-deep end and discuss what exactly makes the battleRead More →

Jack Nicholson as Jack Torrance in The Shining

When I was younger, I liked to read. Scratch that, I loved to read. If I found a book I loved or a story I adored, I wouldn’t put it down. Seriously, bookworms know of the learned skill of successfully navigating crowded hallways and classrooms with your nose stuck between pages. (Books are great, kids. Support your local library.) Recently, though, I’ve rediscovered audiobooks. Since I have little time and attention span to physically carry a book with me, this seemed ideal. It was a flashback to the days in school, walking the halls and following the adventures of Martin the Warrior or the BaudelaireRead More →

So I was browsing a small video sharing website one day, minding my business, passing time before having to leave for work. Scanning the homepage, a particular video caught my eye. A movie trailer for a particularly old internet phenomenon, to be produced by Hollywood, and as a horror movie no less. Interesting, I thought to myself. Finally, bringing an internet icon to the silver screen. Maybe it’ll score higher than 50% on Rotten Tomatoes. But as I watched this trailer, I wondered: hasn’t the Slenderman trend passed already? Is it as relevant as it was back when Marble Hornets first launched their YouTube channel?Read More →

With the passing of Inktober, where online artists commit themselves to make and publish daily drawings, comes the beginning of NaNoWriMo. NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month, is the writer’s equivalent to Inktober, where daily writing and review culminate in a fully realized novel. Titles like “The Night Circus” and “Water for Elephants” were penned during NaNo, which led to worldwide acclaim for their authors. Other stories, often overlooked, are still great reads and a testament to the dedication of writers worldwide. I’ve attempted to work through NaNo, taking stories I had pieced together beforehand and building on them. But between scheduling, exhaustion, school (at theRead More →

Ah, November. A time to recover from crazy Halloween parties and hide the kids’ trick-or-treating haul so they don’t eat it all in one go. Depending on where you live, leaves are changing colors, days are getting shorter, and temperatures are dropping like electronic fish. It’s also the opportune time to bust out some favorite tabletop games. Catan, Ticket to Ride, Munchkin, even Risk or Monopoly for those families and friends that enjoy a bit of healthy competition. Gaming in its various forms has always served as a sort of glue to bring people together. It’s a way to spend time together, share experiences, and createRead More →

Halloween

Greetings, ladies, gentlemen, and others. A bit of a departure this week from my usual ramblings, in celebration of my favorite holiday: All Hallow’s Eve. Instead of a written piece, The Geek Embassy has granted me the opportunity to present a dramatic reading of a piece penned by one of the great masters of modern ethereal horror: H. P. Lovecraft, and his short story, The Outsider. I will be the first to express bias towards this tale, as it imitates the voice of another famed horror writer, Edgar Allan Poe, a personal favorite of mine. And it is true, Lovecraft is the mind behind Cthulhu, one of theRead More →