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Tony Talks #24: A. J. Black – Published Author!

So it has finally happened guys… I am a published author!

Myth-Building in Modern Media: The Role of the Mytharc in Imagined Worlds is finally now available to purchase via Amazon and all good bookshops. It won’t necessarily be on all shelves but you can order online. I’ll provide links at the bottom should you wish to be very kind and purchase. The paperback isn’t cheap but the price point is a bit more agreeable via Kindle, and I recommend asking your library to stock it so then you can read it for free. If you do spend your hard earned money on this, my eternal thanks. Please do let me know what you think too, ideally via an Amazon/Goodreads rating/review, or by messaging me via this blog or my social media pages. I’d love to hear what you make of it.

Here’s the blurb once again if you remain on the fence:

Mythology for centuries has served as humanity’s window into understanding its distant past. In our modern world, storytelling creates its own myths and legends, in media ranging from the world of television and cinema to literature and comic books, that help us make sense of the world we live in today.

What is the “Mytharc”? How did it arise? How does it inform modern long-form storytelling? How does the classical hero’s journey intersect with modern myths and narratives? And where might the storytelling of tomorrow take readers and viewers as we imagine our future? From The X-Files to H.P. Lovecraft, from Lost to the Marvel cinematic universe and many worlds beyond, this study explores our modern storytelling mythology and where it may lead us.

I have to thank my friend Darren Mooney, one of the finest popular culture writers out there today, for kindly putting me in touch with the right people at McFarland to pitch the book to way back in late 2017. They have been very supportive and patient through putting Myth-Building together, as they have my second, Star Trek-focused book which I am a few weeks and about 20,000 words away from finishing. I would recommend anyone who believes they have a topic they wish to write about to pitch their way, they are hugely receptive to new voices.

It was a strange feeling just a few weeks ago doing a final proof before publication and re-reading the book bough to stern. I finished it in January 2019, with a few revisions in August 2019, so it was like reading the whole thing with new eyes. While I’m very pleased and proud of the finished product, already I can see things I would have done differently in some cases, and indeed areas I might well try and revisit and build on in (if I’m fortunate) future books. But the feeling of being published is wonderful. I am extremely lucky, and extremely grateful, to have been given such an opportunity.

All I can say is, in terms of purchasing, that if you read this blog and enjoy my analysis, I suspect you’ll enjoy the book. It leans into certain properties heavier than others – particularly The X-Files, Lost, Game of Thrones and Star Trek – but there’s all kinds of pop culture areas covered here from Lovecraft to The Prisoner to the MCU/DCEU and Assassins Creed, to name just a few. It’s fairly broad so if you’re into many of these particular shows, movies or games, I think you may enjoy what I have to say on them in relation to TV/cinematic narrative mythology.

Once again, if you choose to purchase, thank you so much.

While I’m here, I’ll do a little blog update.

You may have seen that reviews of Alias Season 2 are done and dusted. I finished these a good month or more now, and will hopefully put together an overview of S2 later. While I’ve really enjoyed digging into these reviews, I’ve found that the interest in Alias these days online is… minimal. Sadly, it feels like a forgotten show. If you do enjoy them, do let me know, or do spread the word to any fans of the series. I will be back to start Season 3 at some point but it might be in 2021 now. We’ll see. I’ve come this far so I’m definitely going to write about the remaining 60 or so episodes left.

I’ve decided to slow down on the 2000 In Film reviews too. Honestly, the thought about writing about Nutty Professor II: The Klumps filled me with dread, so I think there’s room to filter and choose the better, more interesting pictures from 2000 for the last six months. It won’t, therefore, be weekly anymore.

As I say, I’ll be busy finishing Book II this month to come (and I’m pitching Book III as I type), so there might be a little less content coming over July, but stay tuned. I’ll be digging back into One Foot in the Grave Season 2 soon, I hope, plus I have a host of podcasts I’m working on/coming out that I’ll make more of an effort to link to on here. I’ll be giving the blog pages an update this week to refresh everything. So stick around, there will always be interesting content to come hopefully.

Hope any readers out there are safe & well, and you/your families are doing ok.

T x

Book links:

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