Sunday, 29 May 2016

Paint Your Own Mini Cthulhu Chess Pieces

I'm in the process of developing a smaller and cheaper version of the Cthulhu chess set, and as with the regular sized set you can paint your own pieces. You can order your pieces now for only £100 here:

https://oldonesproductions.com/products/paint-your-own-mini-cthulhu-chess-pieces



3D printed Cthulhu inspired mini sized chess pieces which you can paint yourself..

“The Thing cannot be described - there is no language for such abysms of shrieking and immemorial lunacy, such eldritch contradictions of all matter, force, and cosmic order. A mountain walked or stumbled.

If I say that my somewhat extravagant imagination yielded simultaneous pictures of an octopus, a dragon, and a human caricature, I shall not be unfaithful to the spirit of the thing. A pulpy, tentacled head surmounted a grotesque and scaly body with rudimentary wings; but it was the general outline of the whole which made it most shockingly frightful.” 

These custom designed chess pieces would make an ideal gift for any Lovecraft fan.

Note that these pieces are made to order and may take up to 6 weeks to despatch.

This product is for the unpainted pieces only, there is no board included.

Original concept art by Luciana Nedelea and 3D modelling by Sergio Mengual.

The King piece is 1.7 inches / 4.5 cm tall.

The Pawn piece is 0.8 inches / 2.3 cm tall.

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Order Before May 31st And You Could Win a Cthulhu Chess Set

Place an order on the Old Ones Productions store before May 31st and you will automatically entered into a draw to win this amazing hand painetd Cthulhu chess set worth £400!

www.oldonesproductions.com



A 3D printed, hand painted Cthulhu inspired chess set with a  board with two inch tiles.

“The Thing cannot be described - there is no language for such abysms of shrieking and immemorial lunacy, such eldritch contradictions of all matter, force, and cosmic order. A mountain walked or stumbled.

If I say that my somewhat extravagant imagination yielded simultaneous pictures of an octopus, a dragon, and a human caricature, I shall not be unfaithful to the spirit of the thing. A pulpy, tentacled head surmounted a grotesque and scaly body with rudimentary wings; but it was the general outline of the whole which made it most shockingly frightful.”

All pieces have weighted bases and felt pads to protect the boards.

This is a unique chess set that would make an ideal gift for any Lovecraft fan.

Note that these sets are made to order and may take up to 6 weeks to despatch.

Pieces are hand painted so may vary slightly from the photos.

The board is sourced to order to match the selected piece colours so may vary from the one shown.

Original concept art by Luciana Nedelea and 3D modelling by Sergio Mengual.

https://oldonesproductions.com/collections/frontpage/products/hand-painted-cthulhu-chess-set

Sunday, 22 May 2016

Growing Collection of Prints Available from Old Ones Productions

I have a growing collection of prints available from the Old Ones Productions store. The latest addition is a print of 'Dark Eyes', a chilling painting by Luciana Nedelea. A quality A3 print of the painting is only £10 - buy yours now here:

https://oldonesproductions.com/collections/prints/products/dark-eyes-print



There are other prints to choose from as well, see the whole collection here:

https://oldonesproductions.com/collections/prints

Thursday, 19 May 2016

Book Review - Forest of Shadows by Hunter Shea

This book certainly starts with a bang. The tight writing and abrupt events carry the introduction and served to really peak my interest. Unfortunately it loses its way a little bit after that point. It then meanders for a while with the backstory for the family the form the core of the story. There's a mystery here to the wife's death that is never adequately explained, and so feels like a convenient excuse for a set of circumstances. The odd co-incidences don't stop there, for example there is a lottery win that means that despite the death of his spouse he is financially independent, and so able to make the trip to investigate strange goings on up in Alaska.

Another oddity that put me off was the daughter. She seemed much older in her mannerisms than her age of six would suggest. I'm assuming there's some significance to that behaviour, but I found it off putting. The pacing also struck me as strange, it occurred in savage bursts with fairly lengthy development in between, and then it all ended in a rush.

Beyond those issues the story was predictable, but did have some decent development, and was a solid read despite my issues with it. The quality of writing was good, enough to carry the problems. I believe this is the author's first novel, and assuming this to be the case then this is a strong debut and hopefully the author will develop their story telling craft in future tales.



John Backman specializes in inexplicable phenomena. The weirder the better. So when he gets a letter from a terrified man describing an old log home with odd whisperings, shadows that come alive, and rooms that disappear, he can’t resist the call. But the violence only escalates as soon as John arrives in the remote Alaskan village of Shida. Something dreadful happened there. Something monstrous. The shadows are closing in…and they’re out for blood.


Click here to buy Forest of Shadows from Amazon

Currently Reading - The Dreaming Void by Peter F. Hamilton


The year is 3589, fifteen hundred years after Commonwealth forces barely staved off human extinction in a war against the alien Prime. Now an even greater danger has surfaced: a threat to the existence of the universe itself.
At the very heart of the galaxy is the Void, a self-contained microuniverse that cannot be breached, cannot be destroyed, and cannot be stopped as it steadily expands in all directions, consuming everything in its path: planets, stars, civilizations. The Void has existed for untold millions of years. Even the oldest and most technologically advanced of the galaxy’s sentient races, the Raiel, do not know its origin, its makers, or its purpose.

But then Inigo, an astrophysicist studying the Void, begins dreaming of human beings who live within it. Inigo’s dreams reveal a world in which thoughts become actions and dreams become reality. Inside the Void, Inigo sees paradise. Thanks to the gaiafield, a neural entanglement wired into most humans, Inigo’s dreams are shared by hundreds of millions–and a religion, the Living Dream, is born, with Inigo as its prophet. But then he vanishes.

Suddenly there is a new wave of dreams. Dreams broadcast by an unknown Second Dreamer serve as the inspiration for a massive Pilgrimage into the Void. But there is a chance that by attempting to enter the Void, the pilgrims will trigger a catastrophic expansion, an accelerated devourment phase that will swallow up thousands of worlds.

And thus begins a desperate race to find Inigo and the mysterious Second Dreamer. Some seek to prevent the Pilgrimage; others to speed its progress–while within the Void, a supreme entity has turned its gaze, for the first time, outward. . . .


Click here to buy The Dreaming Void from Amazon

Crises and Conflicts Anthology from NewCon Press



I've not written anything in ages, but one of the last stories I wrote will soon (ish) be released by NewCon Press in one of the 10 year celebration anthologies - Crisis and Conflicts - find out more here:

http://www.newconpress.co.uk/info/book.asp?id=71&referer=Hp

There's some other great authors involved - and it's a limited run, so get your pre-order in quickly!

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

'Black Eyes' - New Print Available


We have an awesome new print available on the Old Ones Productions store. It's called 'Black Eyes' and it's a lovely dark image by the fantastically talented Luciana Nedelea.

Get yours now for only £10 here:

https://oldonesproductions.com/collections/prints/products/dark-eyes-print


Sunday, 15 May 2016

The Space In-between - Original Art Available


Here is your opportunity to own the original artwork for The Space In-between. This painting was created by Luiciana Nedelea as a design for a back piece tattoo, which is almost done! In celebration of the impending final session at the tattooist I've reduced the price of the painting to just £400! It's A3 sized and features some incredible detail. You can buy it here:

https://oldonesproductions.com/collections/original-art/products/the-space-inbetween-painting

There are also quality A3 prints available for £10 each here:

https://oldonesproductions.com/collections/prints/products/the-space-inbetween-print

And you don't need to be crazy and have it tattooed to your skin to wear this amazing art, as there are black and white t-shirts available:

Black: https://oldonesproductions.com/collections/apparel/products/the-space-inbetween-t-shirt-black

White: https://oldonesproductions.com/collections/apparel/products/the-space-inbetween-t-shirt


Book Review - Endymion by Dan Simmons

I loved the first book in this series, the second book in particular is a hard book to follow. While it doesn't quite reach the highs of that book, it's still a damn fine read and sets the story up for the conclusion. In that respect it reflects the pattern of the first two books.

The story is set a few hundred years after the conclusion of the second book, and while the universe has changed in many ways there are still common elements. It's told from two main perspectives. The first follows that of the main protagonist, who is charged with protecting a girl who is believed to be the saviour of the world.

It's an official of the ruling combined church and state who is charged with the apprehension of the young lady, and so sets up the core of the story. The first book was the journey of the pilgrims that set the stage for the second. And a similar construct is used here, with the chase providing the journey. Along the way we see how different the universe has become. In some ways it has progresses, and in many others regressed from the almost technical utopia of the past.

Unfortunately the story suffers from the same flaw as the first book. It touches upon mysteries that offer some deeper understanding, and I would have loved to learn more about them. Assuming that pattern continues then I expect those questions will be answered in the final book. WHich I'm very much looking forward to reading!


The multiple-award-winning SF master returns to the universe that is his greatest success--the world of Hyperion and The Fall of Hyperion--to tell a story of love and memory, triumph and terror in a novel even more magnificent than its predecessors.


Click here to buy Endymion from Amazon


Currently Reading - Forest of Shadows by Hunter Shea


John Backman specializes in inexplicable phenomena. The weirder the better. So when he gets a letter from a terrified man describing an old log home with odd whisperings, shadows that come alive, and rooms that disappear, he can’t resist the call. But the violence only escalates as soon as John arrives in the remote Alaskan village of Shida. Something dreadful happened there. Something monstrous. The shadows are closing in…and they’re out for blood.


Click here to buy Forest of Shadows from Amazon


Sunday, 8 May 2016

Old Ones Productions - Buy Original Cthulhu Art



Here is your opportunity to buy the original Cthulhu painting used to create the t-shirts and prints also available on the Old Ones Productions.

“Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn.

In his house at R'lyeh dead Cthulhu waits dreaming.”

An original ink and acrylic painting by Luciana Nedelea.

Size is 22 cm x 29 cm.

https://oldonesproductions.com/collections/original-art/products/cthulhu-painting

All orders on the store until May 31st 2016 will automatically entered into a draw to win a bone and brown painted Cthulhu chess set worth £400!



Wednesday, 4 May 2016

Horse Skull Demon Print Now Available


I'm pleased to announce that a new A3 art print is now available from the Old Ones Productions store. The woodcut style painting shows a horse skull headed demon as it is being summoned. I love this style of drawing!

There will be a t-shirt coming soon!

Original art by Marcin Nowacki.

https://oldonesproductions.com/products/horse-skull-demon-a3-print


Book Review - The Three Body Problem by Cixin Liu

I loved this book, so much so that I think it's probably some of the finest science fiction I've read in some time. As I've said before, my love of the genre comes primarily from its exploration of big ideas and there are some fascinating concepts explored in this book. The most obvious of which is first contact, and although this is far from an original topic, it does have some novel nuances here. Beyond that we have the puzzle of why two protons are fired into the Solar System, and the discovery of why and how is truly fascinating.

There is clearly a wealth of research and knowledge in this story. And some of it I found quite challenging, and I love that it in a book. Some of the science is so esoteric that I had to pause my reading to contemplate an idea. There is considerable depth here, that some might find off-putting, but don't let it be. This is a wonderful exploration of complex concepts and philosophy, and is all the more rewarding because of it.

Of course a story isn't carried by grand ideas alone. There is a balanced cast of characters that allows for the tale to be told in a more comprehensible manner. There's also a curious transformation of the characters at play here as well. You start off with sympathies for some, and loathing for others, and their roles switch as you learn more of the truth. That in itself makes this an interesting read.

The Chinese history and perspective of the story also casts a layer of fascination, and some novelty - for me at least. The circumstances of the characters lives added an attraction to the story, and here as well there were discoveries to be made. The historical and cultural differences allowed the slow (but steady) build up to have an interest that might have otherwise be lacking.

Finally we come to the writing itself. It's always difficult with a translated work to determine whether the fault, or the praise is due to the original author, or the translator. For the reader I suppose it makes little difference, it is the end product that counts. The writing is quite dry which doesn't carry the emotion well, although there were a few exceptions. However this does carry the discovery in the story in a robust fashion.

As I said at the beginning I loved this book. It's not perfect (but what is?), but it is an incredible read, and a must read for those who enjoy science fiction with some depth.


Set against the backdrop of China’s Cultural Revolution, a secret military project sends signals into space to establish contact with aliens. An alien civilization on the brink of destruction captures the signal and plans to invade Earth. Meanwhile, on Earth, different camps start forming, planning to either welcome the superior beings and help them take over a world seen as corrupt, or to fight against the invasion.


Click here to buy The Three Body Problem from Amazon

Currently Reading - Endymion by Dan Simmons


The multiple-award-winning SF master returns to the universe that is his greatest success--the world of Hyperion and The Fall of Hyperion--to tell a story of love and memory, triumph and terror in a novel even more magnificent than its predecessors.


Click here to buy Endymion from Amazon



Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Sun Dragon Kindle Countdown Sale This Week

For this week Sun Dragon is available on a Kindle Countdown offer for only 99p, or 99c, so now is an ideal opportunity to read the story that launched the Tau Ceti mission! The offer ends on May 9th.


2012: NASA's Curiosity Rover lands on Mars to search for signs of whether microbial life existed on the planet.
2018: The first alien lifeform, a simple wormlike creature is discovered, gripping the world's imagination.
2022: The first manned mission to Mars begins the longest and most dangerous journey ever undertaken by humankind.
From hundreds of potential candidates, six astronauts from countries around the world are selected to crew the historic mission. Led by Commander Samantha Collins, they must travel across the gulf of interplanetary space, over 150 million miles from home and help. Their mission is to investigate alien life, but what they discover is far beyond what anyone ever imagined...

The Sun Dragon story continues in the Tau Ceti Mission

Review Highlights
"The crew went to Mars to find a small worm, evidence of life outside of earth. What they found was amazing. I love this premise and the uncompromising way it played out for the rest of the book."

"At the very end, there is one description that is so stunning that it left me with a great sadness, but also with a great sense of beauty and hope, and it is what Sun Dragon is, really. Look beyond the words, read the book with your imagination."

"I thoroughly enjoyed this. The level of detail about space flight is astounding and for someone, like me, who has fantasised about being an astronaut since I was a lad it's riveting."

Buy now from Amazon (US): http://amzn.to/ZRrQ5v
Buy now from Amazon (UK): http://amzn.to/12zV5eX

Follow on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheCultofMe

Monday, 2 May 2016

Tau Ceti Mission - 09.03.2352 - A Grand Society

By NASA, ESA, and E. Hallman (University of Colorado, Boulder) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Seb delves deeper into the data from the Cetian signal and discovers more about their society:

http://www.taucetimission.com/2016/05/09032352-grand-society.html

Sunday, 1 May 2016

Woodcut Engraving Style Reaper T-shirt and Print

I love the old woodcut style illustrations and this amazing example by Luciana Nedelea shows the visitation of Death himself:


The t-shirt is available in unisex sizes Small to XXXL.

https://oldonesproductions.com/collections/apparel/products/visitation-of-the-reaper-t-shirt

To fully appreciate the image you should also take a look at the A3 print of the full painting:


https://oldonesproductions.com/collections/prints/products/visitation-of-the-reaper-art-print

And a reminder that every order until May 31st 2016 will automatically entered into a draw to win a Bone and Brown Cthulhu chess set worth £400!

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