Rex Vander was conceived on the night Bon Scott played his first concert with AC/DC. This was apparently mere coincidence, since his parents did everything in their power to prevent him from listening to AC/DC every day thereafter until he moved out of the house at 17. Nine months later, he was born early on a Saturday morning, just in time to watch Rocky and Bullwinkle and the Super Friends. While he holds no truck with astrology, he does believe being born under these pop culture signs have influenced his psyche on a number of levels.

Like most budding writers, Rex put in his million words by composing hundreds of violent short stories, three unproduced scripts, as well as two unpublishable novels (one is about how a group of would-be superhero musicians and the town drunk save Earth from an alien invasion, which proves that, while in high school, he listened to a lot of bootlegged KISS tapes and watched all the Ed Wood and Roger Corman films he could find). Now that he has found his authentic voice, he is working on this blog and an urban fantasy novel laced with horror, science fiction and dark humor.

When Rex is not writing, he is traveling with his wife, KiKi and daughter, Elle. Together they are all working on a travel log of their adventures in and around Florida. Some things they have discovered so far: They can reach any destination in Florida and be back in their own beds that same night, so long as KiKi is driving. The old school roadside attraction is alive and well in their home state, though Ernest Hemingway’s Key West is decidedly dead. If you only come to Florida for Disney and the beaches, you will have a lot of fun, but you will miss out on many of the states greatest attributes. Contrary to popular belief, the whole state has not been paved over for theme parks and ugly sprawling metropolises. There is still a world of unblemished forests, and wetlands to be explored. There is even a cavern in the northern panhandle. There are a lot of really nice people in Florida. However, Rex admits that the X-Files’ Fox Mulder may have been onto something when he quipped, “All the nuts roll down to Florida.” If you don’t believe that, check out some of KiKi’s photographs (Coming Soon).

Being an unflinching Generation Xer, Rex has a number of other unproductive skills that he is nonetheless quite proud of. He can recite verbatim all the dialog from both This is Spinal Tap and Batman the Movie (Some days you just can’t get rid of bomb!). While he never took an official lesson, he learned to play drums from the two greatest professors of all time, Messrs Bonham and Moon. His Clash of Clans town hall is at level 9, all without spending a dime. Every reputable Sorting Hat quiz has pegged him as a Ravenclaw, though he has been know to go Slitherin from time to time (but only in a Snapey sort of way). And, if Star Wars were a skill, he would be a member of the Jedi Council.

On a more serious note, Rex believes in the power of storytelling. So, while Batman is his favorite, he can appreciate a Superman, Wonder Woman and Aquaman story (Rumor has it that he will even tolerate the occasional Green Lantern tale, so long as its written by Peter Tomasi). He loves Star Wars, but has enjoyed a lot of Star Trek, particularly Deep Space Nine. He thinks Doctor Who got a whole lot better with Christopher Eccleston, and that Ren and Stimpy got a whole lot worse without John Kricfalusi.

Rex believes that a great story in the hands of a great teller is what makes us believe in heroic people doing heroic acts. It makes us believe in the power of possibility. It takes us to worlds we have never seen and introduces us to the people we want to be. He says, our ancestors called it magic, but in reality it is story telling. To be a part of this great tradition of story telling is the thing that Rex Vander strives most achieve.


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