On the surface, I come across as milquetoast. Other than the strange accent and pale skin, there’s nothing outwardly remarkable about Jason Sizemore. This is one reason I started Apex Publications. Ten years later, I wrote For Exposure: The Life and Times of a Small Press Publisher to chronicle some of the more outlandish incidents during that decade.
I’m not what you call loquacious. In high school, I was awarded with the “Most Quiet” award my senior year. All the ladies love the creepy quiet ones!
Yet, despite the demure exterior that so many see when they look at me, I don’t feel like I’m anything of the norm. Perhaps that’s why I feel so at home in the worlds of science fiction, fantasy, and horror. They let me unleash, be myself, get my freak on.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not calling you, dear reader, a freak or weirdo.
Though this being Jeremy Shipp’s blog I do have to wonder about you…
Sorry for the digression. I am here to talk about the things that made me who I am. A tribute to those things that you and I enjoy so much.
First and foremost, I love science fiction. It doesn’t matter what media. Two of my favorite things in the world are the television series Lost and Battlestar Gallactica (new school, please). A science fiction novel has greatly shaped the way I view the world—The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell. I adore Brian K. Vaughn’s Y: The Last Man.
The possibilities of the future have long pushed me toward an optimistic worldview. For ten years I ran Apex Publications and juggled a day job before I was able to escape my corporate bonds and declare FREEDOM while showing them my bare bum. Now I work solely for myself and get to do the one thing in life I enjoy more than most anything else: publishing, editing, and writing. Thank you, science fiction!
Second, I love fantasy. The world of Middle Earth allowed my imagination to have that “What if?” moment every time I opened J.R.R. Tolkein’s work. The time I spent watching Xena: Warrior Princess with my parents evoked a sense of fun and adventure. The lessons I learned reading Stephen Donaldson’s misogynistic anti-hero Thomas Covenant showed me that even the worst of us can become better…at least marginally. Neil Gaiman and Sandman made it okay to dream and be yourself. The Princess Bride showed the world that giants can have a heart. If you stay focused on your goal, you’ll eventually reach it. Thank you, fantasy!
Third, I love horror. Brian Keene shocked me with his deep sense of family love and devotion in The Rising. Garth Ennis and his Preacher series warned me that there are some assholes out in the world who delight in making your life a living misery, but ultimately, they’re all part of a grand design. Alien showed me that if you keep your cool in the worst of circumstances that you give yourself the best chance of survival Thank you, horror!
Life is what you make of it. You open your eyes and find meaning in those things you enjoy. For me, for Jeremy, and for you, we are shaped by the grand imaginations of wonderful authors, directors, artists, and other creators. While that road is fraught with occasional peril, it is a path of delight and wonderment.
While I might be a quiet guy, I’m living a crazy and vibrant life. Unfortunately, the crazy sometimes bleeds out to the real world. If you don’t believe me, check out chapter 2 of For Exposure. You’ll discover a combination of ham and sexual proclivities that will disturb most and titillate a handful. Thank you, For Exposure!
ABOUT THE BOOK:
For Exposure: The Life and Times of a Small Press Publisher
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Born the son of an unemployed coal miner in a tiny Kentucky Appalachian villa named Big Creek (population 400), Jason fought his way out of the hills to the big city of Lexington. He attended Transylvania University (a real school with its own vampire legend) and received a degree in computer science. Since 2005, he has owned and operated Apex Publications. He is the editor of five anthologies, author of Irredeemable, a three-time Hugo Award loser, an occasional writer, who can usually be found wandering the halls of hotel conventions