Category Archives: updates

The Chaos Conundrum- Now on Kindle!

Fresh from the digital kitchen, The Chaos Conundrum is now available for Kindle (click on that title for the link, or on this one for the paperback!). Other ebook formats are on the way, but I wanted to let y’all know about the Kindle version.

By the way, if you’re here from Beyond Paranormal Radio (where I’m a guest tonight), thanks for stopping by, and sorry about my funny-sounding voice due to illness. Promise it won’t happen again…!

Hello 2014…

Cc1So long, 2013.  Professionally, it was very good, with a number of books coming out including Extraterrestrials and the American Zeitgeist and The Chaos Conundrum, along with the podcast and radio interviews those entailed.  For those of you who’ve read TCC, the pic to your left is the actual crop circle I discuss in the book.  I failed to unearth it in time for publication, so consider this a value added feature.  For those who are wondering what the crop circle is about, I can only urge you to buy the book…

2014, so far, looks to be a year with a lot of work that will probably see the light of day sometime in 2015.  Right now, chief among these is the working-titled Paranormal Paranoia, for Rowman & Littlfield, which explores the relationship between conspiracy and paranormal culture and television science fiction in the 1990s.  I’m also working on secret-so-far projects codenamed SIENNA SMOKE, SLEDGEHAMMER GOLDEN, and EIGHTH WRENCH which I will only reveal once I’ve finished them…!  Of course, there is also the looming (and priority-dominating) sabbatical project for Mott Community College.

So, if 2013 was the year of paranormal stuff, 2014 is going to be the year of heavy history, eduction, and pop culture stuff.  It’s the other side of the coin I inhabit.

It wouldn’t surprise me if there are some other, smaller, projects here and there.  In 2013 I did some writing for The Schlager Group’s Milestone Documents resource as well as collaborated on a revision and expansion of a test and assessment system for WW Norton’s Worlds Together, Worlds Apart textbook.  Both of those projects were highly enjoyable.

I’m still mired in the research phase for the new book which, in this case, involves viewing lots of television and taking lots of notes.  Dark Skies is a particularly dense watch and I’ll probably end up watching some episodes several times to map out all the (honestly) obnoxiously clever references.  I’m most looking forward to checking out some of the background viewing from the 1970s like Project UFO and Kolchak as well as some “factual” shows like In Search Of… and the always-entertaining Alternative 3.

Anyway, happy new year to you all.  Stay tuned.

End of Semester Updates

Fall 2013 is in the books, with grades all submitted.  It was a good one, with a lot of great students, few headaches, and more ideas that worked than didn’t.

This next semester, I’ll be on sabbatical, working on a fairly massive project.  I’ll be creating a set of learning and assessment tools for our four survey classes (US History to 1877/1877 to the Present; World History to 1500/1500 to the present) and setting up an online home for them.  If you’re interested (and I can’t imagine you would be, but still) here is the application document that I submitted almost a year ago.

Talking to people, they seem to think that the hard part will be the website bit.  Actually, I’m pretty convinced that coming up with the actual materials is going to be the hard part!  I’m also not entirely sure that not being in the classroom is going to be that great–I’ll probably be missing it by the end of January.  I’ve also transitioned out of my part time professional development gig to dedicate as much time as possible to the sabbatical project, so that will be a change as well.

Additionally, I’ve got the next book project going, having signed a contract with Rowman & Littlefield to deliver a book for their series on science fiction television.  My volume will examine 1990s paranormal and conspiracy theory-themed television series as well as the ways in which these things appeared in other shows and–in general–seemed to permeate the SFTV world at the time.  Surprisingly, there are a lot of shows out there that have not been examined to any great degree.  This all extended far beyond The X-Files.

In any case, I negotiated a year to finish and deliver the book, due to the sabbatical project being priority one.  There are some other small things cooking as well and the random project name generator has been getting a workout for both announced and un-announced things.  Thus, I’ll be working on and referring to BLACK SCREWDRIVER (the book project), ENDLESS WEATHER (the sabbatical project), SLEDGEHAMMER GOLDEN (secret), EIGHTH WRENCH (secret), and SIENNA SMOKE (secret).

Have a good  Christmas, Yule, Solstice, etc.  Signing off until 2014, except for random photos and automagically generated stuff…

Books to read, things to do…

Due

So, yesterday, my copy of Posthuman Blues, Vol. II (the collected 2005-2006 writings of the late Mac Tonnies) arrived in the mail.  I’ve devoured it over the past 12 hours and enjoyed it greatly  Expect a full write-up by the end of the week.  Offhand, it filled me with a bit of nostalgia  I’d have written something by now, but it’s the end of the semester and between grading, meetings, and gearing up for my upcoming sabbatical (and its attendant project), my time is limited.

Full disclosure, PHBv2 is published by Redstar, who published my recent The Chaos Conundrum (on sale for $6.99!).  20131217 014822869 iOS I paid my own money for the book though, so no bias or bribery here!  Also, I’m kind of geeked to be featured on the back cover blurbs (pulled from my introduction to Volume 1), possibly the only time I’ll be in the same group as Cliff Pickover and John Shirley.

Speaking of the sabbatical, I’ll be writing a bit about that and what I’ll be working on over the next few months.  It certainly won’t be a vacation!

Now, back to grading and drinking too much coffee.

The Chaos Conundrum- More information on the new book

To the right is the cover to my new book, due out in time for the holiday shopping season.

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I’m excited about this one, not least because it contains a foreword by Nick Redfern, one of the greatest authors on paranormal issues in the world today (not hyperbole, seriously).  From the foreword:

Aaron Gulyas’ The Chaos Conundrum is a thoughtful, and thought-provoking, compilation of papers on a wide variety of paranormal phenomena. Or, as it’s collectively known in circles where the unusual is typically the usual: profoundly weird stuff. A cursory glance at the titles of the essays, and their attendant subject matters, might make some readers assume they are stand-alone pieces with no connecting or unifying parts. Well, those souls would be wrong. Actually, they would be dead wrong.

The connection is not so much the issues and topics that Gulyas places under his supernatural microscope. Rather, it is the fact that the essays all invite us to do one thing: address and consider alternative theories, paradigms, and ideas to those that the established figures of the paranormal would prefer we adhere to.

I invite you to indulge yourself in the work of a man who has made a major contribution to the domain of paranormal research, writing and observation.

Read it, consider it, and learn from it. Just don’t be an ostrich about it.

See, that’s pretty dang cool, right there.

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This is a pretty diverse collection of essays on everything ranging from UFOs to religion to achaeoacoustics, which is pretty interesting.  I also get to talk a bit about Gray Barker, who I touched on briefly in Extraterrestrials and the American Zeitgeist.  As I wrote about here, a couple years back, visiting the collection of his papers in West Virginia was an incredible experience and it was nice to be able to write about his work and its effect on me from a more personal perspective.

This one has been a much more intensive and compressed writing experience and the editing has been a really nice experience, with Paul Kimball of Redstar providing some great insights.

At this point, I’m thinking this may be my last (or close to my last) word on the paranormal for a while (at least in this particular form).  I’m really looking forward to this one hitting the streets.

 

Crossing Things off Lists

Nothing is more satisfying that completing a project (or, at the very least, a significant phase of a project).  Most of the things I’ve been working on have really long gestation periods, so it’s nice to see some forward momentum.

978-0-7864-7116-4Extraterrestrials and the American Zeitgeist is moving through the publisher’s pipeline.  I spent a shameful afternoon responding to copy edit queries and wondering why I never see mistakes the first (or second, or third, or fourth…) time.  That bit’s done now and it’s moving on to the final phases leading to publication.

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Similarly, Doctor Who in Time and Space, to which I contributed a chapter, is due to be released soon. This was pretty fun to do, even if it involved me having to watch (and think deeply about) the 1996 Fox Doctor Who television movie.

OPERATION LEMURIA, which I can’t talk about because I’m deeply superstitious, is completed and in other people’s hands; I’m just waiting for feedback at this point.

RANDOM ANACONDA, a revision of course outcomes for MCC’s “History of the Holocaust” course, is done and the paperwork is moving through the bureaucracy.  The only remaining work is explaining the changes at a bunch of meetings.

In amongst all of this stuff, I’m implementing some changes in my online classes.  It’s been a busy Winter so far, but I’m hoping that the work I’m putting in this semester will, down the road, save me some time.

Now, to get some grading done.

And Away It Goes

At 90,003 words (not including notes or bibliography), the not-yet-formally-titled Space Brother book is off to the publisher. A month, I point out, ahead of schedule, as I needed to clear the decks for the upcoming fall semester and some other projects. It may be the first time I’ve submitted anything before the deadline.

So now, I’ve got some time while the thing makes its way through the publisher’s system and they find all the things I need to fix. Watch this space for updates.

During the next six weeks or so, the blog here will be more focused on History and Teaching rather than “the Strange” as that part of my annual work cycle is gearing up and I desperately try to make my classes more interesting and useful for all involved. It’s not a moratorium on flying saucers, but it’s close…

…At least for now.