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Catching Up

So, a lot of new things going on. We moved again, out of our rental house and into one we bought. We're out in the country (as much as LA has "country") and I love it. The view of the mountains is terrific. You can hear the frogs and crickets in the evening. There are coyotes around but we try to be mindful of them.

'TIL DEATH and BROTHERS are long gone. Brenna O'Brien was kind enough to post a link on my Facebook page to an article on The Onion that speculated about the creative impulse behind the fourth season of 'TIL DEATH. They got it remarkably right. Give it a read here if you like but be forewarned, I think it's probably adults only. I'm frankly stunned that anyone gave the show enough thought to write such a long and considered article.

I've started working on a new TV show with some old compadres of mine. The show is called RUNNING WILDE and it will be on Fox this fall on tuesday nights at 9:30 (after GLEE and another new show called RAISING HOPE.)

It stars Will Arnett and Keri Russell and it's created by Will, Mitch Hurwitz and Jim Vallely. Mitch is the guy who created ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT (which I worked on, along with Jim) so it's kind of an ARRESTED reunion of sorts. We're writing it now and it will shoot in New York, so it looks like I'll be doing some travelling this fall. Luckily, New York is one of my favorite cities. I went to college there and can't get enough of the place.

In book news, NIGHTMARE ACADEMY 3: MONSTER WAR comes out in the US at the end of July -- July 27th, I think. I've been dying to get it into the hands of my US readers. It's easily my favorite of the three books. It has some nice extras in it including a bonus chapter that I'll be putting up for free on my website so that fans of the series in other parts of the world can check it out. The new chapter takes place after the end of Book 3.

I've also finished up a couple new book projects, but I'm not ready to talk about them just yet. I'll be sure to post here when I have more to share. And there's some potentially exciting news about a film series I'd be writing with my buddy Scott Sava -- he writes and illustrates the Dreamland Chronicles among other things. You should check it out if you haven't heard of it.

In other tidbits, I've been loving my iPad. I know this might be heretical, but I've been reading a lot more since I got it. I didn't realize how much I was avoiding reading because the typeface of most books was too small for me to see comfortably (and you can stop with the "old man" jokes, thank you very much.) I also like the backlit screen because I always found myself wrestling around with the table lamp beside the bed to get enough light on regular books. I'm curious to know what other folks think of e-readers versus traditional books in terms of the reading experience. I have to say, I'm a convert which is shocking coming from a guy that loves and collects regular paperbound books (my Stephen King signed/limited DARK TOWER collection is a highlight.)

So that's all for now. Going to freshen up my coffee and take a look at those mountains again. Hope all is well with you...

I know, I know...

My last post was in August of last year and I'm not proud. My only defense is that I've been busy, but it's a poor one. So, to quickly catch you up, I'm still working on the TV show 'TIL DEATH. We have three more episodes to shoot and then it's the end of the season. Fox has aired the first three episodes and the rest of them have been sitting on the shelf. My understanding is that they're going to start airing at the end of the month at 7:30 on Sunday. You might have trouble finding them, because I think most programming guides list it as "Football Overrun."

And so it goes...

Also, for what it's worth, they're airing episodes from last season (season 3) at 7:00, followed by an episode from the season I worked on (season 4) at 7:30. This strategy will make things pretty much incomprehensible. For instance, Ally, the daughter, will be one actress at 7 pm and then a completely different actress at 7:30, as well as pregnant.

BROTHERS is done. Fox hasn't officially cancelled it, but the sets are struck and they repainted the soundstage so... there you go. I enjoyed working on the show and I liked the people very much.

As for NIGHTMARE ACADEMY, I first thought I might show you a nice drawing done by a young man named Sam Jarvis:

Nice, huh? Book 3 (MONSTER WAR) will be coming out in the US this summer. July, I think. I get a lot of email wondering about Book 4 -- as in, will there be one. Here's the short answer: I don't know.

The longer answer is that book 3 completes the trilogy, although, from the start, I had always planned for there to be two trilogies, one that follows the other. MONSTER WAR wraps up many of the threads. You'll find out what happens to the Fifth, you'll see what Director Drake is up to, Charlie and his friends will complete one journey and the path will be laid clear for the next one.

However, even though I know the content of the second trilogy, someone has to want to publish it. If someone does, I'll write it. If not... not. I'll be sure to let you know when I have some news. And a quick note to my UK fans: I know that the UK edition of MONSTER WAR ends on a little bit of a cliffhanger. The US edition is going to have a bonus chapter that takes place just after the last chapter in the UK edition. It explains some things. I will put that chapter up on my website when MONSTER WAR publishes in the US, so everyone can take a look if they're interested. It will be free.

As for the movie -- no idea. Universal bought the rights, but I've heard nothing from them in a while. As always, I'll be sure to let you know anything when I do.

In other news, I'm working on a couple great new books that I think you'll like. I'll have more to say about them at some future point. My wife and kids and I are healthy and reasonably happy. That's about as much as anyone can ask, isn't it?

Wishing the same for you...
Bunch of cool new things happening. First off, some more art for you from the always brilliant J.P. Targete. This is from Book 3 (MONSTER WAR). I know folks in the US don't have the book yet, so I'll try to keep spoilers to a minimum. I'll only give you the title... MONSTER PINCH. As always, click a couple times for a bigger version (and check out what he's holding in his right hand...)

I get asked a lot if the UK version of MONSTER WAR (now available) is the same as the US version. It is -- with a few small changes. It has been slightly adapted for a UK audience, so a few of the terms are different. For instance, "mother" is replaced by "mum". Other than stuff like that, the books are pretty much identical.

Also, the US paperback release of book 1 (NIGHTMARE ACADEMY: MONSTER HUNTERS) is now available.

You can grab it from Amazon HERE although, as always, your best and quickest bet is to go to your local bookstore -- particularly your local independent bookstore. The paperback edition has some fun new extras in the back -- an interview of me conducted by Theodore Dagget, some excerpts from The Nightmare Division's Guide to the Nether (Drake edition) as well as an excerpt from Book 2 (called MONSTER MADNESS in the US).

I also just heard that the Scholastic Book Fair edition of Book 1 was a big hit and that there were a "fabulous" number of books sold, so hopefully word about the series is getting out!

In other news, we just wrapped our first week of shooting on our newly revamped version of the TV show 'TIL DEATH, starring Brad Garrett. The first episode is done and looks great. We brought in an audience for the taping and it was a bit of a thrill to see them respond so well. We also recorded the audio tracks for an upcoming episode that's going to be animated. It's really cool and I'll share some of the art for it later.

Our other show, BROTHERS, begins shooting next week, so things are going to get very busy. Mike Tyson will be a guest star. He was very funny in THE HANGOVER, so we're looking forward to having him.

The only downside to this TV thing is, as always, all the craft service around. Too much food! I've got to get back in some semblance of shape. Thinking of taking a long walk today. Maybe some time on the dreaded elliptical machine.

Hope all is well with you. Take care...

The Fifth...

Another quick art update. J.P. Targete just delivered his newest NIGHTMARE ACADEMY illustration. This one is of "The Fifth," also known as "Mother" and the "Queen of Nightmares." All four of the Named Lords of the Nether have been devoted to bringing her to Earth.

This is not a good thing.

Click once or twice to enlarge.

MONSTER WAR is out in the UK!

MONSTER WAR (book 3 of the NIGHTMARE ACADEMY series) is finally available on store shelves in the UK. This completes the first trilogy of NIGHTMARE ACADEMY books and fans of the series will see many things wrapped up, as well as the direction of what I hope will be a second trilogy at some point. If you enjoy reading the books as much as I've enjoyed writing them, please tell your friends. Also, if you're interested in ordering online, I have some links on the home page of my website.

MONSTER WAR will be out in the US in the summer of 2010 and, later, in the over 20 countries where NIGHTMARE ACADEMY is published. Believe me, I'm VERY eager for everyone to get their hands on the book. I love all the books but, between you and me, MONSTER WAR is my favorite.

I get a good deal of email asking me to make sense of all the different editions of the various books between the US and the UK. If you're interested in that, you can find a guide to the various editions after the cut.

Read moreCollapse )

One last thing -- I thought I would mention that, in addition to writing and producing 'TIL DEATH, I started work as a writer/producer on a new TV series for the Fox network called BROTHERS. It stars Daryll "Chill" Mitchell, Michael Strahan (yep, from the NFL), Carl Weathers and CCH Pounder.

They're all terrific folks and I'm having a blast working with them. Look for the show on Fox this fall.

So, busy times but a lot of good stuff. I hope you all enjoy MONSTER WAR. Also, if you haven't seen it yet, scroll down to check out some great new NIGHTMARE ACADEMY art by the brilliant J.P. Targete.

Take care...

Slagguron -- WOW!

I just had to share this right away. The brilliant J.P. Targete just delivered his next NIGHTMARE ACADEMY illustration and this one is a stunner. This is Slagguron, the last of the Named, as he wreaks havoc on the San Diego Zoo while the military does their futile best to stop him -- it's a scene that should be familiar to anyone who has read book 2 (titled MONSTER MADNESS in the US and MONSTER REVENGE in the UK).

Also, if you look closely (and if you have some idea what my bald self looks like) you might recognize someone familiar...

Click on the picture a couple times to see it in all its awesome glory!

Tyrannus is here...

I got a lot of email asking for updates to the monster art on my website and I'm really happy to finally be able to say... here it is! J.P. Targete, the guy who did all the cool illustrations at www.deanlorey.com, is currently working on a bunch of great new stuff and I thought I would share it here as it arrives. Eventually, all the new art will all make its way to my website.

For today's image, I want to introduce you to Tyrannus -- one of the Named. Here he is facing off against Charlie and friends on the 5th Ring of the Nether. You can click on the image below a couple times to make it MUCH bigger.

Cool, huh? Tyrannus finally gets to take his place alongside Barakkas and Verminion. Here's Barakkas (and, again, you can click on these to make them bigger):

And here's Verminion:

J.P. is currently working on the illustration for Slagguron, the final Named. I'll post that when it's done.

Take care...

A Quick Post...

Just wanted to send warm wishes to Faith Hochhalter. I attended the Project Book Babe charity event in Arizona to help raise money for her fight against breast cancer. She recently had major surgery as part of her treatment and, apparently, things went very well, which is wonderful news. If you're interested, you can check out her blog about her experiences HERE.

In other news, a few weeks ago I was a guest at the Storymakers convention in Utah. Scott Savage (the author of the terrific FARWORLD series) invited me to deliver the keynote. I had a moment of panic when I later realized that I was expected to talk for 45 minutes to an hour. It wasn't exactly like I had an hourlong speech laying around, but I put something together and ended up having a great time.

I also got to hang out with my friends Janette Rallison and James Dashner (both authors) and I met a lot of very nice folks. The next day, I taught a class on the basics of screenwriting, which forced me to come up with something to actually SAY about the basics of screenwriting, which caused me to interrogate my screenwriting buddy Steve Mazur -- he teaches classes on it at AFI and knows that kind of stuff.

Outside of that, thanks for all the kind comments on my previous post about Lulu. Much appreciated.

Take care...


We had to put the oldest of our three dogs to sleep this morning. Her name was Lulu and she was fourteen, which is a very respectable age for a black lab. Here's a picture of her -- she's the one on the right (weird Willy is on the left).

She was found on the street over a decade ago by our friend, Jessica Cunningham. We tried to find her owner, but no one replied to the signs we put up and no one was looking for her at the local shelters and veterinarians, so we took her in and named her Lulu. We had her even before we had our first child and she always reminded us of when we were young and relatively carefree. She was cheerful and plucky and very very sweet, so it was a sad morning for us. We kept her collar and gave it to the kids, who were glad to have it.

I went straight from the vet's office to the writer's room for the TV show I'm working on. I wasn't really in a very funny mood. Luckily, we had a cockroach invasion about mid-day and we decided to head out and resume again tomorrow. I've never been so thankful for a cockroach invasion.

Take care...