Saturday, January 1, 2011

Starting the New Year off with a Smile!

Happy New Year! Today, it’s all about the smiles…

Today is the Eye Candy Blogfest, hosted by Vicki at Rambles and Randomness “Post a favorite picture - something that makes you smile every time you see it.” Be sure to check out the others entries as well!

I thought long and hard (and almost hurt myself) over which picture to select. Yes, my first thought was Kate Beckinsale. I won’t deny it. But ultimately, I selected an image that holds a special meaning for me.

This is Frank Frazetta’s “Battlestar Galactica,” created for the original TV show:


Battlestar Galactica and Star Wars were big influences on my original idea for CassaStar. This painting sparked my imagination more than any other medium. I could see the Cassans and their ships, and the adventures of Byron and Bassa came to life. The desolate, rocky planet in the painting even became a scene in my story, and the only one to survive the rewrite. (I’m sure those who’ve read the book know the scene, as it was also the most difficult to write.)

So when I look at this picture, I smile – the raw beginnings of CassaStar!


I also received the Making Smiles on Faces Award from L’Aussie. Thanks so much!

Most of my blogging friends are good at making me smile! (Which made narrowing it down REALLY tough.) But I couldn’t list everyone, so I just selected a few special charmers:

Abby at Above Water
Yvonne at Welcome to my World of Poetry
Old Kitty at Ten Lives and Second Chances
Jules at Trying to Get Over the Rainbow

Thanks to everyone who voted for my trailer at Parajunkee. She’ll announce the winners soon!
Meanwhile, the book trailer contest voting at Spunk On A Stick’s Tips starts today! Mine’s one of almost twenty trailers. If you think it’s the best, hop on over and vote!

And a special thanks to Edi’s Book Lighthouse - he just posted the best books of 2010 and CassaStar was in the top three from small publishers. Thanks, Edi – that definitely makes me smile!

89 comments:

sweetsue said...

Just stopping by to wish you a Happy New Year! I'm heading over to vote right now.

Ocean Girl said...

Happy New Year Mr Alex J. Cavenaugh!

I watched Battlestar Galactica growing up but I must say I never knew or heard of Star Trek till much later. The show somehow didn't get to Malaysia or just didn't catch on or I was too young to notice. But I watched Land of The Giants and that was "old".

Francine Howarth said...

Hi,

Happy New Year.

Re image: it's great to see what inspires the creation of characters and the writing of a novel. Such lends insight to the writer's inner self, and good luck with all future projects.

Congrats on award - fun to get and fun to give.
best
F

Ricky said...

All the best for 2011 Alex !

Old Kitty said...

I shall look forward to imagining that fabulous scene as I progress through your book!! (Yes!! I'm reading it in bed!! LOL!). Ahem.

Anyway!!! Congratulations with your fab award and thank you so much for nominating me too! Awww! Happy New Year!!

Yay for more success for Cassastar!! Brilliant!!! Off I go to vote too!! Take care
x

The Words Crafter said...

Wow, congratulations on best books and the awards! Well done!

I watched Battlestar Galactica religiously when I was a teen. I was going to marry Richard Hatch :P

Happy New Year!

Jules said...

I was afraid to see tour eye candy ;) But hey, I know that show and picture!

Congrats on the award and that you for thinking of me as someone who makes you smile! Means a lot to me.

Hers to a million copies this year for you :D
Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

Dan said...

Love that picture. It reminds me of the old Ralph McQuarrie Star Wars paintings I used to stare at when I was a kid (in the pre-internet days)

Dan @ Sanguine Musings

iZombie said...

happy 2011, and great bg photo... as a kid i saved cereal box tops to order a ty-fight card board simulation toy that was bigger than me... i played with it for weeks.
ahh the memories.
jeremy

Jeffrey Beesler said...

Happy New Year, Alex! Hope you find lots more success in 2011!

Jemi Fraser said...

I can definitely see how that scene in your book came from the landscape in this painting - very cool!

Wishing you all the best in 2011!

DEZMOND said...

congrats on the award and the contests!
And I wish you gave us some real eye candy ...

Susan Kaye Quinn said...

BSG! Although the remake was awesome (except for the end), the classic will always live in my heart. Thanks for sharing! And Happy New Year! :)

Vicki Rocho said...

Why, that doesn't look a think like Kate! hahaha. I vaguely remember Battlestar Gallactica...not sure if I ever saw it I just liked saying the name. LOL.

Thanks for joining in the eye candy fun! Loving all these pictures - so much fun!

Mason Canyon said...

Nice to see where the first idea for CassaStar came from. Wishing you good luck in the two contest. Here's hoping 2011 brings wonderful things your way.

Mason
Thoughts in Progress

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

I loved that original Battlestar. I hope you find as many smiles in 2011 as you did in 10.

Teresa aka JW said...

Happy New Year, Alex. May 2011 be your best year yet for writing. May you and your family experience good health, prosperity and inner peace.

Keep up the good work!
Teresa

Haleine said...

I've only ever seen one of the original BSG episodes but was a die hard fan of the reboot. Love that BSG is the pic that you chose.

Happy New Year.

Kal said...

I have never seen that Battlestar print. It's wonderful. I may need to borrow that for a minite here.

Jamie Gibbs (Mithril Wisdom) said...

Congrats on the award, and a very Happy New Year! I was convinced Miss Beckinsale would be gracing your blogpage today, but Battlestar Galactica is just as cool, I suppose, hehe. It's cool to see the image that inspired that scene of CassaStar too :)

Nebular said...

Happy New Year, Alex! I wish you all good things for this year! :)

This picture is so you - I love it :)
Kate Beckinsale would have been a great pick, too ;) She's stunning!

Now off to Vicki's blog and her cool blogfest..

Bryan Russell (Ink) said...

Ah, Frazetta... always liked him. Despite the occasional ludicrousness of having every lady barely clothed, even in climatic situations of some chilliness. Methinks he likes to blend two kinds of fantasy...

erica and christy said...

happy new year! i hope you continued success in 2011! congrats on the award.:0) thanks for sharing the picture that inspired your writing. i always enjoy learning more about other writers and what helps them create the worlds for their novels. christy

Mary Vaughn said...

I was hooked on both those shows. I can see where this picture would be such an inspiration. Happy New Year, Alex, may it only get better for you.

gideon 86 said...

Great inspirational pic!

HAPPY NEW YEAR ALEX! Best of luck in the new year!

Michael

Michelle Gregory said...

thanks for linking to the blogfest. i had a hard time choosing. i think you'll appreciate what i posted.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Sweetsue, thanks!!

Ocean Girl, I remember that show.

Thanks, Francine,

Kitty - thanks and glad you're reading it now.

Words, sorry you never snagged Hatch.

Jules, it's well deserved!

Thanks, Dan!

Jeremy, I missed that toy opportunity!

Thanks, Jemi.

Dezz, thought about it!!

Susan, I agree.

Vicki, told you I'd surprise you with my picture choice.

Thanks, Haleine.

Kal, there's a couple other BG pictures on Franzetta's site.

Thanks, Jamie. Thought I'd break the 'Kate' pattern.

Thanks, Nebular!

Bryan, you're probably right.

Christy, thanks for stopping by.

Thanks, Mary.

Thank you everyone - and damn did you people get up early this morning!!!

Jamie Burch said...

Very cool painting! It was interesting to learn how it influenced CassaStar. Thanks for the glimpse inside your imagination!

Happy New Year!

Charity Bradford said...

Pictures like this make me wish I could draw. Happy new year!

Elaine AM Smith said...

Battlestar! Great to see that picture.
Happy New Year!

mshatch said...

BSG is probably in my top three favorite shows of all time - and I'm an old fan of Frazetta; I used to copy his stuff back in the day. Great pics!

Tara said...

I really thought you'd post a pic of your cover - but that's much sweeter. Love it :)

Happy New Year, Alex!

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

What a special inspiration and story of where it led you. Thanks for sharing that and happy 2011!

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I liked the first Battlestar, too. And had the hots for Richard Hatch!

Bargain Hunter said...

Happy New Year =)

Mara Nash said...

That's a pretty cool piece of art, but I've always wondered in pieces like this why the woman has to be nearly nude? I mean, that's just not practical.

Unlike others, I didn't care for the original BSG...too cheesy. But the recent remake was pretty awesome...even though it was nearly an eternity between seasons and they dragged it out way too long, and it got kinda weird at the end. Other than that, though, it was better than the original!

Happy New Year!

welcome to my world of poetry said...

Happy New Year Alex, also thanks for the lovely award. It made my day.

Yvonne.

February Grace said...

Happy New Year, Alex! I LOVE the picture, it really made me grin as I grew up on the original Battlestar!!! I'm even more excited to start listening to Cassastar now (which is at the top of my New Year's to do list!)

Funny story to tell you- I got to meet Dirk Benedict years ago at a Comic Con. on my 30th b-day actually. I got a copy of his book signed for my sister- and I told him how she dreamed of having a 'double space wedding' with him, and her best friend marrying Richard Hatch back when she was in sixth grade.

In her book he wrote something like, 'To (her name inserted here) hurry up with that wedding, I'm getting old...'

When I told him that I think he was just about my first celebrity crush when I was little (and he said "No, please, don't tell me how old you were back then!" he signed my photo "with love from your OLD crush." *laugh* Great sense of humor.

May 2011 bring you health, happiness, and all wonderful things. Thanks for the BIG smile today.

~bru

Jennifer Becton said...

I'm afraid I don't know much about Battlestar, but it's a color piece of art!

Jennifer

Donna Hole said...

Awesome. I can see how that would be inspirational.

........dhole

Summer Ross said...

Oh wow, what a very neat picture. have a great day!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thanks, Jamie.

MSHatch, I made a good selection then!

Tara, that never even occured to me!

Mara, the first was very cheesy, but by the time the newer one ended, I didn't care for it either.

You are welcome, Yvonne!

Bru, that's really cool you got to meet Benedict! Yeah, I won't give away my age when the show was popular. And listening to CassaStar - on your Kindle???

The Golden Eagle said...

Cool picture!

Congratulations on the well-deserved award!

Ellie said...

Happy New Year!

I was so sure you'd post a picture of Kate ;) But I can see why the BSG picture won, and how it influenced the scene you mentioned. Powerful stuff.

Like you, the original series of BSG has played a huge role in my life. Not just of my love for sci-fi, but also the ability to dream and imagine. I guess it is no accident my first novel is science fiction and called Dreaming of Sleep!

Bossy Betty said...

Thank you for not leaving me a rabbit, though I know, deep in your heart, that you want to.

Hope your New Year is a wonderful one!

Karen Peterson said...

2010 certainly gave you many things to smile about! I hope 2011 is just as great!

I do fully intend to read Cassa Star very, very soon. Knowing that you drew inspiration from two of my childhood favorites just makes me that much more excited about it.

Julie Musil said...

Oooo! I'm off to vote! And great picture. It's fun to learn how ideas for books began. Happy New Year, Alex!

Helen Ginger said...

Alex, congratulations on all the recognition CassaStar and your site are getting.

I think you're already having a Happy New Year!

Hart Johnson said...

And here is what a dweeb I am... art never crossed my mind... but I like it--very sci-fi and cool.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Ellie, glad it influenced your writing as well!

Betty, some day...

Karen, thank you!!

Thanks, Julie.

Helen, so far, so good!

Hart, it's the first image that came to mind. After Kate, of course.

Rawknrobyn.blogspot.com said...

That is a very impressive painting, especially given it's a painting versus computerized image or something. Without knowingly participating, I posted a photo that always makes me smile. There are two. (I still don't know how the first one got there.)
Happy 2011, Alex!
xoRobyn

Cold As Heaven said...

A smile is a great way to start the new year. And a picture of Kate B would been nice (and Kate W even better).

I enjoyed the pictures you chose.

Happy New Year >:)

Cold As Heaven

Danette said...

Still making the rounds but glad I didn't miss your entry!!! Best wishes for the New Year.

Charles Gramlich said...

A favorite of mine as well. That Frazetta pic.

Chris Phillips said...

I liked the pic/back story, happy new year!

Ann Best said...

How young you were on 8/8/88! (your comment on my post today) I was 48. How young "I" was compared to today (lol).

With my final edits on my book at the publisher, I'm now hoping to read the books I bought last month, including yours!! Congrats on its being top three!! I'm smiling for you, too.

baygirl32 said...

Happy New Year Alex! congrats on another well deserved award

Stephen Tremp said...

Stopping by to say Happy New Year to you and yours! And that is a really cool poster!

amy said...

That's awesome! I love learning about people's writing influences. :)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Robyn, you were in sync with this blogfest thing.

Cold, I almost went with Kate...

Thanks, Danette! I'm still working on everyone who participated in the blogfest.

Ann, I hope you enjoy it! Funny, everyone thinks I'm even younger than that...

Thanks everyone!

Major.Mack said...

Happy new year. Love the new battlestar

aspiring_x said...

happy new year!
i was surprised not to find a pic of kate today!
this one is super cool though, i can see why it would inspire! :)

Lisa Potts said...

LOVE Battlestar Galactica. Great inspirational picture. Happy New Year!

rogue evolent said...

Alex,
That is a great FF painting. As much as I like his SF stuff, I still think his Sword & Sorcery art is better. I also liked Steve Fabian, Jeff Jones, and Virgil Finlay's stuff.
Great post.
r/e

Ellen aka Ella said...

Hi Alex, Happy New Year to you~
I had such a crush on Richard Hatch, in Battlestar Galatica. I always watched this series! I love your eye candy pic and how it inspired your story. I believe my son has started the book, when he goes back to college, I plan on starting it! ;-D

Congrats on your reward and I will check out those on your list, that I don't frequent. Always fun to meet and make new friends. I will head over to check out your competition.

Do you still have snow in your area? Most of it melted here today, but we still have some. Rain should finish it off, tomorrow!

Congrats!

Melissa Bradley said...

I love that Frazetta BSG pic. His Wolfman inspired my own werewolf stories. And I, too, am a huge fan of Star Wars and Battlestar. They were two of my biggest inspirations growing up.

Good luck with the trailer. I'll get myself over there to vote.

Happy New Year!!

Amie Kaufman said...

This is a great blogfest, I'm loving the pictures! This one gave me a huge grin, thanks!

Eliza said...

Happy New Year Alex :-) I can remember watching Battlestar Galactica.

~Sia McKye~ said...

Happy New year Alex!!

Your trailer is still one of my top favorites. Of course you know that as we met because I wanted to compliment you on it.

I also loved Battle Star Gallactica (but not the new series), Star Wars, and all things Star Trek.

Wishing you the very best for 2011!

Enid Wilson said...

Perhaps Kate is the woman on the left of the Battlestar photo...

Happy New Year, Alex!

Fire and Cross

Pk Hrezo said...

Hey, Alex!! Happy New Year!! I love the Battlstar Gallactica pic.... I can totally see how it would've inspired CassaStar.

Best of luck on your contests. Looking forward to a new year of your posts. Cheers!

Rayna M. Iyer said...

To be honest, I was expecting Kate, but this is much better. Better because it is unexpected and I am a closet science fic buff.

Happy New Year, Alex.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Aspiring, I know, everyone expected Kate!

Rogue, I dig his fantasy work as welll. This one just holds a special place with me.

Ella, apparently Hatch was a favorite with the ladies! Hope your son is enjoying it. And snow is all gone!

Melissa, that is cool!

Sia, I'm glad you still really like it!

Enid, I can imagine that...

Thanks everyone!

Laura Eno said...

Happy New Year, Alex!

Sarah Ahiers (Falen) said...

that is an awesome picture.

Jen Daiker said...

Awesome choice!!! Love the award, it fit perfectly for the blog fest as well!

I've enjoyed your blog in 2010 and I look forward to enjoying it in 2011!!

Nicki Elson said...

That really is a great picture - it moves, you know? So much adventure just waiting to happen.

Congrats on top three!

Patricia Stoltey said...

Cool! Heading over to Spunk on a Stick right now.

Dempsey Sanders said...

All the best for 2011 Alex, I too am off to vote for you now

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thank you, Jen!

Thanks, Nicki. And I see your trailer is doing well in the contest, too.

Thanks, Patricia!

Appreciate it, Dempsey.

BryStearns said...

Nice pic Alex! I can't believe it took me this long, but now I totally see the resemblance! Well done! Do we get a sequel soon? Oh please please please!

And a happy and prosperous new year to you Alex!

Tessa Conte said...

Congrats on making that Best Books list! You totally deserve it. And I can totally see how Battlestar Galactica would be inspiring.

Copyboy said...

I remember there was this site auctioning off Frank's original art. I keep kicking myself for not entering.

Lynda Young said...

Oh my goodness, I haven't seen Frank Frazetta’s “Battlestar Galactica” pic in so long! Takes me way back! hehehe

Happy New Year
Lyn

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Bryan, I JUST finished the first rough draft of the sequel!!! Time to celebrate.

Copyboy, I'd love to have this print.

Lynda, we just won't tell people how far back...

Clarissa Draper said...

I love Battlestar G. I've not seen much of the old episodes but I fell in love with the new.
Thanks for posting and congrats on the award.
CD

L'Aussie said...

Hi there Alex! You've been so busy obviously you didn't have to cook the Christmas turkey?? Firstly, congrats on finishing your first draft of your CassaStar sequel. That's tremendous! Secondly, thanks for passing on the 'smile' award, then I must say I love your pic for the Eye Candy blogfest. I'm late commenting on this as I only had the net on my phone for the break. Not a pretty sight!

Happy New Writing Year!

Abby Minard said...

Thanks so much for the award Alex! Sorry I didn't see it sooner!!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thanks, Clarissa!

Thank you, L'Ausie! And I had Christmas tuna steak.

You're welcome, Abby!