|Behind The Screams
The Sixth Annual Institute of
Horror, Fantasy & Science
By AL J. Vermette
On May 18th Blood Moon Rising hosted
our sixth Institute of Horror, Fantasy & Science
Fiction for the Queens Flushing Public Library.
With this being our sixth time hosting this genre
event, I wanted to up the stakes a little and add
even more to the event than ever before. If I
had to say which Institute was the best on con-
tent, I would have to say that it was this one for
sure. The only glitch in the event would be the
fact that I have been living in Orlando Florida for
the last few months working on new projects there and had to travel to New York
to conduct the event. As a result, I was unable to set up my horror and sci/fi
displays as advertised but what can you do. I had driven up to the Big Apple and
got there just a few hours before show time at 2:30 A.M. and at the venue by 9:00
that morning, hosted The Institute and was on a place headed south by 9:30 that
very night. Being that things were so crazy, sadly I didn’t really get to talk with my
guests as I would have liked too. Sadly, I barely got to even talk with any of the
authors before the event began. Let me say how sorry I am for that too.
For this year’s show among our normal line-up of author readings, psychic
readings, artists and filmmakers were three all new entries. The first was our old
friend and film maker Patrick Devaney who besides showcasing the newest
episode of his TV series “Zombie Hunters: City of The Dead”, Patrick talked about
his life being a Wiccan or Witch if you will. Patrick had everyone spellbound (ok I
just had to say that) and talked about what being a real witch in today’s world was
all about. He informed everyone on what a real Wiccan does and how TV and
movies use the witch in horror and fantasy films and how what they really do is far
from the wicked old hags you see in the movies. No, they don’t feed on children
and no they don’t fly on brooms. Patrick’s lecture was very informative as he
brought across the fact what real witches were and that it was more of a religion
than the demonic spell casting like in most Hollywood films.
Also added to this year’s event was BMR staff writer Charles Dunbar, who
conducted a lecture on Japanese Monsters. Being the leading authority on the
subject of creature myths from the Far East, Dunbar talked about such monsters
as a ghost girl and one eyed beast with the face of a human ass. (I just write this
stuff ok) His talk on such creatures really captured the younger viewers who grew
up watching such TV shows as Pokemon and others. Being in high demand,
Charles later went to perform another lecture upstairs for children where he
continued his talk on the subject he most loves. The lecture was even informative
to me as well as I got to learn about creatures even I never heard of.
Next came the last of our new presentations when real ghost hunter and
paranormal investigator Artie Matos took the floor. Never before have we had a
true ghost expert on hand to talk about what a real haunting would be like. He told
us about what he does when looking into a haunting and some of the things that
happened to him in his investigations. Matos informed us as to what ghosts are or
what is believed to be ghosts and other worldly spirits. He gave us insight to what
kind of equipment is used in an investigation and how to contact him if you too
have a ghost spooking your house.
As with all six years of this event we held our author readings. Making his fifth
appearance at the Institute of Horror, Fantasy & Science Fiction was author and
singer song writer Soda who read a story of his from an back issue of Blood Moon
Rising Issue #17. His story was just as good today as it was ten years ago when
we released that issue. I have to admit that it was really cool to hold in my hands
the magazine after all these year. You see back then when we produced BMR in
print it was us who did our own in house printing and cover binding. So I had
really held that very issue way back when and here I got to hold it once again.
In addition to Soda and contributing their voices to the author readings were Rob
Young, Kayden Moore and Melanston Hawks who read from each one of their new
books. All of our authors were great and all who came to the event enjoyed each
one of our authors. Later they all took part in the Q&A section of the author
segment where we all got to know them a little better. It’s always fun to learn
about what each author was thinking when they wrote their works. It was great
having each one be part of this year’s Institute. My only regret was that I didn’t get
to really talk with all of them like I would liked to have. But running on no sleep
and hiding my weary eyes under my sunglasses even during the film portion of the
event, I sadly was not on my best game. But then again, I just drove up for two
days and went right to the event. Talk about crazy. Note to self…..never drive
12.000 miles and then host an event again. Fly next time.
Coming back for her 2nd event was psychic Susan Lynn who preformed live
readings on our spectators. Like last year’s Institute, Susan talked about what it’s
like to be psychic and how she controls it. Everyone loved asking questions of her
in the Q&A portion of her segment and after her readings in the main lecture
room, Susan went on to do private one on one readings at her own table just
outside of the main room. Be sure to join us for this year’s Blood Fest Halloween
show this October 19th where psychic Susan Lynn will be doing live reading on
stage for our 10th Blood Fest Anniversary show.
When the lights were dimmed and the movie projector was wheeled out both
filmmaker and witch Patrick Devaney and author Soda returned to spotlight their
other talents when Soda showcased his new music video from his rock band (E )
Motion. After the video, Soda and his drummer participated in a Q&A discussion
and talked about the making of their video. Next came the newest episode of the
on- going series “Zombie Hunters: City of The Dead” and Q&A following the film
with its creator and director Patrick Devaney.
Well although I was dead on my feet the show went on and went very well
indeed. It made my trip back to New York to host my 6 year of event well worth
doing although some people felt I should have passed on the Institute this year…..
I did it and was glad I did. Looking forward to next year’s Institute of Horror,
Fantasy & Science Fiction.