Glow-in-the-Dark Radio #300!

Like listening to science fiction adventure? Join Writer, Reader and Host Mike Luoma for the 300th episode of Glow-in-the-Dark Radio! Mike reads from his books every week – right now it’s The Adventures of Alibi Jones! For this special 300th episode, you’ll hear chapters twenty-one, twenty-two and twenty-three of the novel Alibi Jones and The Sunrise of Hur! Mike runs down the story so far beforehand, so you can enjoy the chapters even if it’s your first time listening in. There’s also a short “history” of the podcast, which began in the late summer of 2006.

Listen here.

The Week in Geek

This week’s top stories around the state. It’s been a relatively quiet week.


The biggest news came late last week: South Burlington Writer Lands SyFy Show with The Expanse. This is pretty awesome news: The Expanse series is pretty damn awesome, and it’s really cool to see that Hawk Ostby is the head writer for the show. Stay tuned: we’ll keep an eye on this and post up news as it happens. In the meantime, go pick up the books.

Speaking of books, Nate Herzog has a StoryHack Invitation: The Future of The Book. Record a video of yourself reading a book in the future, thinking about how books will change in the coming years. This should be fun.

Vermont Comic Con is still attracting attention, although there’s no news on the planning, other than it looks as though The Gamers Grotto of Bennington is sponsoring it. Quarterstaff wasn’t available?

Like showing off your geekiness while driving? Pick up a 802MTG Decal.

Bombadil and Other Middle-earth Mysteries: 11th Annual Tolkien in Vermont Conference Schedule was popular, although the conference was last weekend. Read our recap here. Interested in another conference? The 120th Annual Vermont Library Conference just opened up registration.

Interested in teaching reading to adult learning? The Vermont Adult Learning is hiring a Literary Specialist in Burlington.

In political news, the Vermont Senate votes to label GMO foods.

The graduating seniors of the game design program at Champlain College put the fruits of their labors on exhibition for the next two weeks at ArtsRiot.

Finally: this weekend, we’ll be holding our next entry in the Vermont SF Writer’s Series. Come out to Cold Mountain Stories tomorrow at 4:00pm at Quarterstaff Games to hear Pat Esden, Paul Hobden, Daniel Mills, Erika Nichols, Aimee Picchi and Brian Staveley read!



Final Reminder: Cold Mountain State

Our final reminder before the event kicks off tomorrow: we’ll be holding the next entry in the Vermont SF Writer’s series, Cold Mountain Stories, tomorrow afternoon at Quarterstaff Games in Burlington. The event will feature fantasy stories from Pat Esden, Paul Hobden, Daniel Mills, Erika Nichols, Aimee Picchi and Brian Staveley!

RSVP here.

Taking Stock: Vermont Comic & Game Shops

We had a question come through on our facebook page when we posted up about Free Comic Book Day events earlier today, and we realized that we don’t have a good grasp on precisely what stores are out there in Vermont. There’s the usual and very well known places that pop up almost daily for us on the Geek Things reports, and then there’s… others.

We did some research and came up with a list of places that may or may not exist. Now, it’s your turn. Help us build a solid list!

Earth Prime Comics / Quarterstaff Games, Burlington.
Status: Active.

Both stores are open and have a wide range of programming and up to date and well curated stock. We’ll be holding an event there tomorrow.

Brap’s Magic, Burlington.
Status: Active.

Brap’s Magic recently made the transition from an online store to a physical one, and they seem to have been doing quite well, with a range of programming in-store.

Book Garden, Montpelier.
Status: Active.

Primarily a bookstore, but Rick has a great selection of games and hosts the ocassional game night there, so we’ll count it.

Gamer’s Grotto, Bennington.
Status: Active.

Up and running. They’ve got a regular programming schedule, and seem to be popular down south.

Wonder Cards & Comics, Barre.
Status: Active.

Up and running. There’s a decent and up to date selection of comics here, but it’s very cluttered. The shopping experience isn’t typically that great, but it’s a good place to go if you know what you want.

Dark Tower Gaming, St. Johnsbury
Status: Active.

Up and running, with active programming. This store focuses exclusively on Magic the Gathering.

The Electric Lounge, Manchester Center.
Status: Active.

Cyber cafe in Manchester that specializes in video games, but they have tabletop space to rent. They also do computer repair and a range of other things.


Main Street Sports Cards, Winooski.

Status: Unknown / Active?

This store has a minimal online presence with some reviews on G+ and Yelp!, but nothing within the last year.

Amazing World of Comics, Burlington.
Status: Unknown.
This store popped up for me the other day when looking for something else on Google Maps. I’ve never heard of it before, and while a website popped up, it doesn’t work. Other people have confirmed that they’ve seen it, but I’ve yet to hear about someone visiting.

Dragon’s Lair Comics at Brown’s Sales and Service, Windsor.
Status: Unknown.
This popped up on a list, but I can’t find a website or any other information.

Empire Hobbies, St. Albans.
Status: Unknown.
This popped up on a list, but I can’t find a website or any other information.

Forgotten Dreams Used Books and Comics, Morrisville.
Status: Unknown.
This popped up on a list, but I can’t find a website. There’s a phone number and a Foursquare site for it, with people having checked in in the last 60 days, so maybe it’s around?

Northside Cards & Hobbies, Bennington.
Status: Unknown.
This popped up on a list, but I can’t find a website.

Sports N’ Tyme, Manchester.
Status: Unknown
This popped up on a list, but I can’t find a website.

Heroes Kingdom, St. Albans.
Status: Closed?
I’ve been to this store a couple of times, but over the years, I’ve heard that it’s been closed, and I can’t find an online presence for it.

Barre Comic Book shop, Barre
Status: Closed
This is from way, way back. I remember going as a kid, and someone reminded me of it recently. Does anyone know what this one is, what it was called or exactly where it was located? (mid/early 90s?)

The Comics Outpost, Barre.
Status: Closed

This comic store used to have a physical location, but according to the Vermont Book of Days, it seems as though they’ve converted to mail order, although it’s not clear if they’re still active.


So, help us confirm what’s in the state! We’d be interested in hearing about some of these unknown stores, and getting confirmation that Heroes Kingdom is indeed closed. Is there a place that’s missing?

Game Designers’ Hard Work on Display at Champlain College and ArtsRiot

The 2014 Senior Game Show at Champlain College. Photo by Steve Mease, used with permission.

The 2014 Senior Game Show at Champlain College. Photo by Steve Mease, used with permission.

Last night, the seniors at Champlain College’s Game Studio showed off their final projects and their demo reels. Teams of students collaborated to create playable games, demonstrating the skills in planning, design, execution as well as programming and computer art during their course of study. The development teams displayed their games’ trailers, as well as their personal demo reels. The keynote address by Jason Della Rocca, co-founder of Execution Labs, hit on the opportunities to learn from failures as much, if not more, from successes.

The live stream of the proceedings is available on the Game Studio’s Ustream channel. The students’ games are on exhibit at ArtsRiot on Pine Street in Burlington for the next two weeks. Pop by and play them yourself.

Vermont Events for Free Comic Book Day

Free Comic Book Day is an industry-wide day celebrating all things comics! Head to your local comic shop to pick up a variety of free comics from various publishers. This year’s event will take place on May 3rd, two weeks from tomorrow. Here’s where you can drop in on an event:


  • Wonder Cards & Comics, Barre
  • Earth Prime Comics, Burlington

Across the border:

  • Fantastic Planet, Plattsburgh NY
  • Aquilonia Comics, Cards & More, Troy, NY
  • Newbury Comics, West Lebanon, NH
  • Triple Play Games, Claremount NH
  • Comic Boom, Keene, NH
  • Modern Myths, Northampton MA
  • Bob’s II Comics & More, Northampton, MA
  • Newbury Comics, Northampton, MA

Geek Things for April 18th, 2014

  • FNM – Friday Night Magic – See our homepage for format, 6pm – 11pm, Quarterstaff Games, Burlington. (Gaming)
  • Batteries & Motors, 11:00 am, Montshire Museum of Science, Norwich. (Kids)
  • Tinkering Lab: Open Studio for Makers, 11:00 am, Montshire Museum of Science, Norwich. (Kids)
  • Lab Coat Investigations, 1:00 pm, Montshire Museum of Science, Norwich. (Kids)
  • Sound Science, 3:00 pm, Montshire Museum of Science, Norwich. (Kids)
  • PSYC/NSCI Lecture: Dr. Camron Bryant – From drugs to food: Genomic approaches to the neurobiology of substance abuse in mice, 12:30 – 1:30pm, McCardell Bicentennial Hall, Middlebury College, Middlebury. (Talk)
  • Lyman Spitzer Jr. Planetarium, 12:00pm – 12:30pm / 3:30pm – 4:00pm, Fairbanks Museum and Planetarium, St. Johnsbury. (Astronomy)
  • Friday Night Magic — Standard Constructed, 6pm – 10pm, The Gamer’s Grotto, Bennington. (Gaming)
  • Friday Night Magic — Varying Format, 6pm – 10pm, The Gamer’s Grotto, Bennington. (Gaming)
  • Spring Migration Bird Walk. 7-8:30am, North Branch Nature Center, Montpelier. $10/free for members. (BirdS)
  • iConnect Workshop, 9 am-12 pm, Community College of Vermont, Rutland. (Tech)
  • ‘Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory’, 3 & 8 pm, Dorothy Alling Memorial Library, Williston. (Theater)
  • Magic: The Gathering, 6-8 pm, Brownell Library, Essex Junction. (Gaming)
  • Create a Biodiverse Garden for Ecological Resilience, 6:30-8 pm, North Branch Nature Center, Montpelier. $5. (Environment)
  • ECHO Earth Week’s MudFest, 10 am-4 pm, ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center/Leahy Center for Lake Champlain, Burlington. Regular admission, $9.50-12.50; free for kids ages 2 and under. (Mud)
  • Creative Writing Workshop, 10:30 am & 5:30 pm, Studio 266, Burlington. (Writing)
  • Early Bird Math, 11 am-12 pm, Richmond Free Library, Richmond. (Kids)
  • Friday Night Magic: Two-Headed Giant Born of the Gods Sealed, 7:00pm, Brap’s Magic, Burlington. (Gaming)

Lock S-Foils in Attack Position: Quarterstaff Games to host X-Wing Miniatures Tournament

Fans of the very cool Star Wars miniatures game should head right over to Quarterstaff Games this Saturday April 19th, where they’re hosting an entry in their X-Wing Escalation League. This is an ongoing league, and this weekend’s event will be a 100 point Tournament.

Here’s the details:

Join us on April 19th for our first Star Wars: X-Wing tournament!

Players will build and play a single 100 point squadron list through a Swiss style tournament. Number of rounds will be based upon attendance.

Entry is $5 and sign-ups end promptly at 11:30am.

1st Place: Season 1 Medal, alternate art Colonel Jendon ship card, and a pack of acrylic tokens (3 Seismic Charge and 5 Ion tokens).
2nd Place: Choice of card box (Rebel of Imperial), and a pack of acrylic tokens.
3rd Place: The remaining card box.

All participants will receive one alternate art copy of the Dagger Squadron Pilot ship card. Any remaining copies will be distributed to the players based upon final tournament rankings.

All Star Wars: X-Wing Tournament Rules will be in effect.

All players are expected to have everything they need to field and fly their squadrons. This includes ship models, bases, ship and upgrade cards (no proxies), range rulers and movement templates, dice, a set of asteroids, complete Damage Deck, and any tokens your squadron will need.

Quarterstaff Games will provide the necessary play surfaces. Players may bring their own play mats if they wish, however any play mats that the Tournament Organizer feels may offer an unfair advantage (measured grids, non-standard dimensions, etc.) will not be allowed to play on.

Got what it takes? Go RSVP here on their Facebook event.

Quick Lit: Seven Days Covers Cold Mountain State & Other Geek News

Aimee Picchi

Many thanks to Seven Days: in this week’s issue, they’ve covered our upcoming reading:

Meanwhile, Geek Mountain State is gearing up for another of its popular readings, this one devoted to fantasy. Among the six writers at “Cold Mountain Stories: A Night of the Fantastic” will be Brian Staveley of Marlboro, whose novel The Emperor’s Blades was published in January by Tor Books. Already getting enthusiastic reviews from genre fans, it’s the first in an epic fantasy series called Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne.

Read the full article here.


Geek Things for April 17th, 2014

  •  ‘Cinderella’, 7 PM, Lyndon Institute, Lyndon Center. $22-54. (Theater)
  • Spring Discovery, 9-10:30 am, Green Mountain Audubon Center, Huntington. $8-10 per adult/child pair; $4 per additional child; preregister. (Kids)
  • After School Maker Series: Legos, 3-4 pm, Fairfax Community Library, Fairfax. (Kids)
  • Tech Tutor Program, 3-6 pm, Dorothy Alling Memorial Library, Williston. (Tech)
  • Carrie Brown – “Arming the Union: Vermont Gunmakers and the Technology That Shaped America.” 7 pm, Pawlet Public Library, Pawlet. (Talk)
  • Green Writers Press Celebration Party, 7 pm, Phoenix Books, Burlington. (Writing)
  • National Theater Live: ‘Frankenstein’, 7 pm, Loew Auditorium, Hopkins Center, Dartmouth College, Hanover. $23. (Theater)
  • ECHO Earth Week’s MudFest, 10 am-4 pm, ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center/Leahy Center for Lake Champlain, Burlington. (Mud).
  • Forza: The Samurai Sword Workout, 6-7 pm, North End Studio A, Burlington. $10. (Workout)
  • Spring Forward Creative Writing Workshop, 6 pm, Bixby Memorial Library, Vergennes. (Writing)
  • Warmachine / Hordes, 5pm – 11pm, Quarterstaff Games, Burlington. (Gaming)
  • Toy Cars: April Vacation Program, 10:00 am, Monthshire Museum of Science, Norwich. Members: $70 / Non-members: $80 Pre-Registration Required. (Kids)
  • Mirror, Mirror, 11:00 am, Monthshire Museum of Science, Norwich. (Kids)
  • Tinkering Lab: Open Studio for Makers, 11:00 am, Monthshire Museum of Science, Norwich. (Kids)
  • Lab Coat Investigations, 1:00 pm, Monthshire Museum of Science, Norwich. (Kids)
  • Fossils: Evidence of the Past, 3:00 pm, Monthshire Museum of Science, Norwich. (Kids)
  • Woodin Environmental Studies Colloquium Series – The Shouf Biosphere Reserve and Co-Management by Nizar Youssef Hani, 12:30 – 1:20pm, Franklin Environmental Center, The Orchard Hill-Crest 103, Middlebury College, Middlebury. (Environment)
  • NOOK Knowledge, 1:00 PM, Barnes and Noble, South Burlington. (Tech)
  • The Conscience of a Cartoonist: Jeff Danziger in Conversation with Tom Tomorrow, 7:30 pm, Norwich Congregational Church, Norwich. (Cartooning)
  • Astronomy Camp, 10am – 4pm, Fairbanks Museum and Planetarium, St. Johnsbury. (Astronomy)
  • Lyman Spitzer Jr. Planetarium, 12:00pm – 12:30pm / 3:30pm – 4:00pm, Fairbanks Museum and Planetarium, St. Johnsbury. (Astronomy)
  • Northshire Mystery and Thriller Reading Group – The Boy In The Suitcase by Lene Kaaberbol and Agnete Friis, 2:00 pm, Northshire Bookstore, Manchester Center. (Mysteries)
  • A Transition Town Montpelier – Dr. Alan Betts – Dealing with Climate Change. 6pm, Kellogg-Hubbard Library, Montpelier. (Talk)