Pandora Driver Review

May 29, 2011

Raw dieselpunk noire excitement and flavor! That is what comes to mind when I think of what I’ve just read.
Pandora Driver is a wonderful view of a vanished age that might have been.

Without spoilers, let me say John Picha delivers a tale of Betsy, a young woman tested at every turn and apparently doomed.

Detailed, vivid action sequences are balanced with bitter sweet episodes of torment and degradation. Through it all, our realistically portrayed heroine never surrenders.

Little touches, such as mentioning Converse Jack Purcell sneakers and a boxing gym, show research into the 1930s. The cover art and a snappy graphic at each chapter heading add to the flavor of this interesting volume.

If you’re a dieselpunk fan, there are scenes in Pandora Driver that will make you want to cheer.

Thanks, John. I’m looking forward to a sequel.

You can pick up your own copy at Apple iBookstore, Amazon or Lulu Press.


BalitCon Schedule!

May 26, 2011

I was just informed of my new schedule for BaltiCon. Unfortunately, I won’t be giving the Free and Open Source for the Creative Mind clinic this year. I am going to be part of some really interesting panels, however.

There will be a very few copies of my steampunk romance, Crazy Taylor available during my signing. That will be 4pm Friday, in the hallway signing tables.

Here’s the final schedule for Saturday:

10am     Post Colonial SF/F                                    Salon B        Moderator
11am      Immortality & Longevity in SF      Salon B
1pm       Reading for Pleasure                               Salong B    Moderator
2pm      Reading excerpts from my books  Belmont Room
4pm      History as a Source of Fantasy         Belmont Room    Moderator
6pm      Grand Openings                                         Parlor 1041
7pm     Great Forgotten SciFi Authors        Belmont Room

On Friday, May 27th and Saturday, May 28th, I’ll be at BaltiCon, in Maryland.

I’m going to be sitting in on some panel discussions as well as giving a presentation on Free and Open Source Software for the Creative Mind.

I’ll have trade paperback copies of Crazy Taylor and New Ickford Manor available to autograph. Please note that New Icford Manor is currently out of print and I have VERY few copies left.

If you see me in the hallway, feel free to say “hi”. If you have one of my works, I’d be happy to autograph it.


Only In Japan!

May 13, 2011

My good friend Den, shared this image on FaceBook…


This is a call for help to all the friends and fans of Joe Bethancourt.

As reported by Robert Zucker:

On Saturday, April 30th, Joe’s home in Phoenix was heavily damaged by fire. Joe, his wife Cher, their rescued animals and Joe’s instruments all made it out safely. The house will have to be completely rebuilt.

A Benefit Concert will be held on Saturday, May 14th from 1pm to 4pm in the Big Room at Fiddler’s Dream in Phoenix to help Joe and Cher with living expenses while the long and involved process of getting the house rebuilt takes place. Admission to the event will be a requested minimum donation of $10.

We need you, Arizona’s music community, to:

1. Volunteer to play 2-3 songs
2. Volunteer to help at the event
3. Tell all your fans that they should attend this event
4. Tell other musicians who have not received this e-mail about the event

ALL PROCEEDS from the event go to Joe and Cher Bethancourt. The folk’s at Fiddler’s Dream arranged for the room and AMAZ Radio will cover the cost of renting the room as a donation.

If you want to play or volunteer at the event, e-mail Mr. Zucker at

To make this event a success we need all of you to use your own promotional resources to spread the word and get your fans and friends to attend.

To those of you who are in the media and are receiving this note; please do what you can to get your media resources to help publicise this. Tell other people in the media about it. Mr. Zucker is available to answer questions from any media outlet.

Many have filked his tune, True Story, about the FBI investigation of the society in the 70s.  I’m sharing this in my blog as he was a huge influence on myself and others in the early days of the S.C.A.

Ioseph of Locksley, mundanely known as Joe Bethancort..


Joe Bethancourt is an Arizona treasure. He is also a friend. Let’s show Joe and Cher that we are the friends and the music community they can count on in a time of need. Thanks for your help.

Robert Zucker
AMAZ Radio
P.O. Box 1554
Queen Creek, Arizona 85142



Old Cookbooks!

May 7, 2011

I recently found a set of old cookbooks that are long out of print and out of copyright. I thought my fans might find them amusing.

Click this for the download page.

I would love to hear from anyone who actually tries some of the recipes and will let us know what they think.


The following quote is from a recent post on

“In college, I had a renowned creative writing professor try to convince me to stop writing “genre” fiction and put my talents to better use. My answer to him was to ask why I would give up writing something I loved for something I had no interest in?”

Now this makes so much sense to me. I have read a great deal and for relaxation, much prefer genre fiction.

Click this for the full article.

I’ve been dissed by the ‘real literature’ snobs on more than one occasion.

What do you think?