Meeting Authors Shenanigans


(The very famous first word of Beowulf)

If you’ve been looking at my Instagram, I managed to drop a butt-load of photos of people in familiar looking outfits similar to TV shows, Video Games, and Comic Books. What’s the reason for this phenomenon?

Comic Con!

The annual Lexington Comic and Toy Convention for Kentucky rolled around, and I was there, accompanied by my ever-cosplay-loving wife. This is my excuse for why my blog was silent for a couple of weeks. That and I have attained work! You are reading the words of the newest member of Pepsi!

With all of that out of the way, let’s go!

This year I wanted to do something special; spotlighting. There were a myriad of things to see; such is the nature of a convention. Comic books for sale, reasonably priced. Plushy toys, video games from the bygone era, special appearances of actors -on camera and of unique voice-, and independent artists from the area.

Naturally, I thought, “Hey, I’m a blogger, I should… do writer things!” ha ha ha, and I set out to ask some questions, to bring you, the reader, some of the rich ore the Kentucky art vein has to offer.

May I introduce, Ronald R. Van Stockum, Jr.

The face of scientific and fictional brilliance

I had a wonderful chat with Mr. Stockum. He told me about his book, Xortal, a fantastic idea that compelled me to know more.

Afterwards I asked Mr. Stockum some questions:

“What is your favorite movie?”
7th Seal

“Where do you get your inspiration from?”
It just happens. Your imagination compels to make you write.

“How long have you been writing?”
For over 40 years.

“How did you get your start?”
I was a Sentinel news article writer.

“What drives you to write?”
I cannot not do it.

That last one had me thinking, so much so, I almost forgot to be professional and finish the conversation. I wasn’t thinking it was profound; there are many people who live on the right side of the brain. Some live so far right, they have no idea of left. And those people interest me, they live for art, breathe art, and stay in below human conditions while pursuing the genius behind the craft. And with that way of living, they sometimes say things like, “I cannot not write,” like they’re possessed. And that’s sort of how Mr. Stockum came across. And I must admit, I labelled him as such, a total right brained, seeking the art to the point of insanity. I don’t mean that as a bad thing either.

And then…

I began writing this article. I turned in my homework, gathered my materials, and reached for some websites to gain some finer details, when all of a sudden a hidden cache of information appeared. I forgot to add the ‘Jr’ to his title, and found a highly decorated military soldier with the same name. Naturally, I was wrong, but with the date of the man’s birth, and his career, something interesting was forming. Even further on, when I was looking for the right man, I was finding a completely different side to… Dr. Van Stockum.

Dr. Stockum has three degrees in biology, one degree in law, and is a practiced attorney (or former).

Here’s his website:

A man teetering on the edge of a sane mind, AND heavily practiced researcher of science and law? It became apparent that I was looking at an “Ambidextrous Mind”

I am using that title from an article he gave me to look at. With all the pieces together, I see now his love for science and fiction come to life. His series, “Markman’s” takes place in an apocalyptic Kentucky. He gave me a gander at the map for the story…

For your viewing pleasure

And now you have a gander!

It goes without saying he was a very talented writer, with much experience in art and logic to provide a unique storytelling few can offer. If you’re looking for some apocalypse writing, and need to know what it’s like to read from a local Kentucky artist, then I urge you to try this. I certainly am, and I can’t wait to get my copy.



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