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J. NEIL SCHULMAN is a novelist, journalist, screenwriter, filmmaker, publisher, radio personality, composer, actor, and unemployed prophet.
He's the author of twenty-one books (including break-outs, audiobooks, and a graphic novel) and including two award-winning novels, Alongside Night and The Rainbow Cadenza, short fiction, nonfiction, and screenwritings, including the CBS Twilight Zone episode "Profile in Silver." He adapted and directed Alongside Night as a 2014 feature film, released in July 2015 as a Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack, and streaming on iTunes, Amazon Video/Amazon Prime, and ROKU channels. The novel's movie edition of his classic Prometheus-Hall-of-Fame novel -- lauded by Anthony Burgess, Milton Friedman, and Ron Paul -- has been joined by a graphic novel and Audible unabridged audiobook, both also sold on Amazon.
On June 2, 2010 Glenn Beck praised Alongside Night at length to three million listeners of his radio program, calling it, "Phenomenal! Phenomenal!"
In 2006 Schulman directed his first feature film, Lady Magdalene's, based on his original screenplay. Lady Magdalene's won "Best Cutting Edge Film" following its February 2, 2008 film-festival premiere at the San Diego Black Film Festival and "Audience Choice" at the 2008 Cinema City International Film Festival. The movie also won "Special Jury Award for Libertarian Values" at the 2011 Anthem Film Festival.
Schulman also executive-produced Lady Magdalene's with Nichelle Nichols (Star Trek's Uhura), who played the title role. As well, Schulman played Ali, an American Al Qaeda terrorist, and even wrote five songs for the soundtrack, including an original gospel song Nichols sang titled "Rahab the Harlot."
After over 92,000 sponsored views on YouTube Lady Magdalene's currently streams on Amazon Video/Amazon Prime and ROKU channels, and a DVD is available on Amazon.
His latest non-fiction book, published as an Amazon Kindle, is the exploration and debate about property rights in original content, Origitent: Why Original Content Is Property. with contributions by Wendy McElroy, Samuel Edward Konkin III, and Stephan Kinsella, with a foreword by publisher Steve Heller and an Introduction by Stephan Kinsella.
His latest novel, published as an Amazon Kindle, is the gonzo science-fiction romp through multiple timelines, The Fractal Man, a finalist for the 2019 Prometheus Award. Brad Linaweaver praises it writing “J. Neil Schulman’s The Fractal Man takes MetaFiction to a new level. It’s a wildly entertaining collision of the 20th and 21st Centuries. There is something new under the sun.” and Eric Raymond reviewed it saying, “Assuming you know what 'space opera' is, this is 'timeline opera' done with the exuberance of a Doc Smith novel."
His third novel, the comic fantasy Escape From Heaven, won high praise from luminaries such as Larry Niven, Jerry Pournelle, David Brin, Colin Wilson, and Piers Anthony, and reviews compared it favorably with novels by Mark Twain, C.S. Lewis, Robert A. Heinlein, and even the classic writings of Milton and Dante. Following a radio-talk-show-host to Heaven, where he meets the Trinity, Escape from Heaven tells the story of the custody dispute between the divorced Adam and Eve for the entire human race ... and reveals that they have other names we already know them by. In Two Excerpts from Escape from Heaven Neil explains how God decided to "trade his omnipotence, his omniscience, and his omnipresence for the possibility of finding love," and why only Adam could redeem his own original sin in "The History of Creation" and "The Gospel According to Jesus." Escape from Heaven is also in development as a feature film.
On March 16, 2009 Schulman was awarded the Samuel Edward Konkin III Memorial Chauntecleer by the Karl Hess Club, only the third time the award had been granted, with the previous recipients being Hans-Hermann Hoppe and Wally Conger. The award was presented to Schulman by the club's surviving three founders, Mike Everling, J. Kent Hastings, and Brad Linaweaver. He most recently won the "Sovereign Award for Lifetime Achievement" from Libertopia, August 31, 2013.
J. Neil Schulman's latest hard-printed nonfiction book, The Heartmost Desire, includes his "Unchaining the Human Heart -- A Revolutionary Manifesto,"serialized 2009-2010 at J. Neil Schulman @ Rational Review, and is filled with real-life examples of why liberty is necessary for human happiness.
Also included in The Heartmost Desire is "I Met God," serialized at J. Neil Schulman @ Rational Review.
From 2003 to 2005, J. Neil Schulman was the West Coast Co-host of Jack Landman's Cybercity Radio, a program of out-of-the-box talk. Neil interviewed such guests as mega-attorney Gloria Allred; novelists Brad Linaweaver, Victor Koman, John DeChancie, L. Neil Smith, and Tom Monteleone; Heinlein biographer Bill Patterson; and crime & military history expert, Randy Herrst.
In 1987 J. Neil Schulman founded SoftServ Publishing, the first publishing company to distribute paperless bookstm by bestselling authors such as Harlan Ellison and Robert Silverberg via personal computers and modems and in 1996 he founded Pulpless.Comtm, which preceded Stephen King by distributing the novels of bestselling authors such as Piers Anthony, Robert Silverberg, Norman Spinrad, and Simon Hawke through the World Wide Web.
Pulless.Com was the first-ever publisher to release a novel reviewed in a major science fiction magazine -- Victor Koman's Kings of the High Frontier, published June 1996 and reviewed in the May 1997 The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction -- that before it ever appeared in a paper edition won a major literary award -- The Prometheus Award for 1987.
Pulpless.Com also electronically distributes all of Schulman's own books except for The Fractal Man and Origitent. He has been recognized as a pioneer in electronic publishing as far back as the January 18, 1989 Wall Street Journal, which wrote "J. Neil Schulman has seen the future, and there are no books"; and more recently explicitly named as a pioneer in this field by the New York Times web site.
He's lectured on electronic publishing for Connected Education/the New School for Social Research in New York, and Northwood University in Midland, Michigan.
The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction's article about Schulman calls his books, "very influential in the LIBERTARIAN-SF movement" and says his books "are motivated by a combination of moral outrage and a fascination with the hardware of politics and economics."
In late November, 1980, JNS was brought in as a consultant to research and propose ideas for a documentary to be developed by Public Communications, Inc., on the topic of work and productivity, being underwritten by Chase Manhattan Bank for public television. The president of Public Communications, Robert Chitester, had previously worked with Milton Friedman to produce the highly-acclaimed public TV series, Free to Choose.
On April 28, 1982 Neil produced for cable TV In Recital from San Antonio, a two-hour recital of violin and piano recorded live at Ruth Taylor Concert Hall, Trinity University, starring his father Julius Schulman and pianist Andrew Mihalso.
During 1992, he hosted The J. Neil Schulman Show, a program of interviews and music, on the American Radio Network's Kaleidascope program, and wrote frequent articles for the Los Angeles Times and Orange County Register opinion pages which were reprinted in numerous major newspapers across the country.
From 1972 to 1990 he was an editor and writer for Samuel Edward Konkin III's magazines, including New Libertarian Notes, New Libertarian Weekly, and New Libertarian, contributing his first published short stories, contributing a six-part interview with Robert A. Heinlein, doing additional interviews with libertarian author Robert LeFevre and representatives of the Church of Satan, and writing articles on topics ranging from movie music to the Holocaust.
Along with Samuel Edward Konkin III, J. Neil Schulman is considered one of the founders of the Agorist movement, based on the practice of countereconomics as an alternative to political action in seeking a free society. Schulman organized CounterCon I in 1974 and CounterCon II in 1975 as the first organized conferences presenting countereconomic strategy and Agorist philosophy. Konkin was a speaker at both. In August 1975 on their cross-country relocation from New York City to the AnarchoVillage in Long Beach, California, Konkin and Schulman outlined a book titled CounterEconomics, which they intended to co-author. When the proposal failed to secure a publishing contract, Schulman finished writing his first draft of Alongside Night in 1976 -- its publication by Crown Publishers in October 1979 making it the first published presentation of Agorism and countereconomics -- awaiting Konkin's nonfiction presentation of Agorist counter-economics in The New Libertarian Manifesto, first published in October 1980. The known surviving chapters of CounterEconomics have just been published as an Amazon kindle. Konkin also wrote the Afterword "How Far Alongside Night?" for the 1987 Avon paperback edition of Alongside Night.
Schulman began his career as a photojournalist at age 14, selling to local newspapers in Natick and Framingham, Massachusetts, beginning with basketball photography then expanding out to covering culture and local politics. In addition to his newspaper sales he also did experimental art photography that Mad Magazine photographer Irving Schild submitted to New York City's Museum of Modern Art, portrait photography, and Schuman submitted his photography for The New York Rock Ensemble's next album cover, performing on guitar with the band at Boston's Jazz Workshop, and spent a day in Boston photographing rock musician and later film composer Michael Kamen. Some of this work can be seen at Schulman's personal website, A Gallery of J. Neil Schulman Photographs.
Schulman is a popular speaker on a variety of topics, having delivered talks, appeared on panel discussions, and engaged in debates at the San Diego Comic Con, World Science Fiction conventions, DragonCon, LosCon, Gun Rights Policy Conference, the Eris Society, the PEO, the Lions Club, and for other conferences and organizations, and he's been a frequent talk show guest coast-to-coast on subjects including his books and screenwriting, electronic publishing, and political issues, for such hosts as Dennis Prager, Michael Jackson, Oliver North, George Putnam, Gene Burns, Ray Briem, Carl Wiglesworth, Conway & Steckler, Barry Farber, William H. Kennedy, and many others.
He has been interviewed on CNN, was on ABC's World News Tonight as an expert on defensive use of firearms during the 1992 Los Angeles riots, and debated one-on-one with the late Los Angeles County Sheriff Sherman Block on UPN Channel 13 News Los Angeles on the topic of the repeal of the federal "assault weapons" ban. The Fox News TV Network interviewed him twice on the fifth anniversary of the Brown-Goldman murders in Brentwood for his book The Frame of the Century?.
His writings on firearms have been used by witnesses on both sides of the gun-control debate in congressional hearings before the House Subcommittee on Crime.
Schulman's writings have appeared in magazines and newspapers including Reader's Digest, National Review, the Los Angeles Times Book Review, Cult Movies, Locus, Reason Magazine, Mondo Cult, Liberty, Prometheus, OC Weekly, the San Antonio Light, the Anaheim Bulletin, Gun Week, The American Rifleman, California Libertarian, The Lamp-Post, and The Journal of Social and Biological Structures. He's also written articles and blogs for many Internet websites including Filmstew.com/Yahoo! Movies, The Hollywood Investigator, Rational Review, Levine Breaking News, Permakent.com, Jerry Pournelle's and Free Republic.
In addition to media already noted, and not counting the many reviews of his books, Mr. Schulman has been written about in magazines and newspapers including USA Today, Shooting Times, Analog, Byte Magazine, PC Computing, Computer Shopper, and the Long Beach Express-Telegram.
Schulman's first novel, Alongside Night (Crown hardcover 1979, Ace paperback 1982, Avon paperback 1987, SoftServ 1990, Pulpless.Comtm 1996, 1999, 2009, 2013), a prophetic story of an America beset by inflation and revolution, was endorsed by Anthony Burgess and Nobel laureate Milton Friedman, and received widely positive reviews, including the Los Angeles Times and Publisher's Weekly. The novel, published in 1979, anticipated such 1980's and 1990's problems as increased gang violence and homelessness, economic chaos such as the 1980's stock market crash and S&L crisis, and political trends such as the economic and political unification of Europe. In 1989, Alongside Night was entered into the "Prometheus Hall of Fame" for classic works of fiction promoting liberty.
The Rainbow Cadenza (Simon & Schuster hardcover 1983, New English library paperback 1984, Avon paperback 1986, SoftServ 1989, Pulpless.Comtm 1996, 1999) was his second novel, winning the 1984 Prometheus Award, and was the basis for an all-classical-music LASERIUM concert which played for several years at planetariums in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston, New York, and in Canada.
The Rainbow Cadenza is the story of a young girl in the 22nd Century who must fight the sexual exploitation of her era to pursue a career as a performer of "lasegraphy," a classical form of visual music evolved from the current laser shows. The book received favorable comments from such diverse authors as psychologist/bestseller Nathaniel Branden, British author Colin Wilson, Gregory Benford, and Robert A. Heinlein, who publicly praised it in front of a crowd at a 1983 meeting of the L-5 society. The book also got raves from Publishers Weekly, Library Journal , Poul Anderson in Reason Magazine, and Jeff Riggenbach in the San Jose Mercury-News. The Rainbow Cadenza is one of the first science-fiction novels to portray gays and lesbians in a future where same-sex relationships are not only mainstream and same-sex marriage is perfectly normal but in a future where gays and lesbians are politically powerful and socially ascendant.
Published two year's earlier than Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale, The Rainbow Cadenza was praised for its feminist content by reviewer Beth Wickenberg writing in the Arizona Daily Star:
"[Joan Darris] is a reminder that women in her future world still need liberation. It strikes me as strange -- and fills me with hope -- that a man would write a novel, especially a science-fiction novel, with such a feminist message. ... 'The Rainbow Cadenza' is imaginative and stylishly written, well worth its price for the moral questions it raises, even to those who are not science-fiction buffs. Schulman manipulates his words and characters much as the lasegrapher controls the colors and shapes of a composition. Each climaxes with a sign of hope: a rainbow."
Schulman also wrote the "Profile in Silver" episode, exploring the JFK assassination, for The Twilight Zone TV series on CBS, which was run three times in network prime time in 1986 and 1987, and which was released on DVD.
The outlines and first two drafts of the teleplay are included in Profile In Silver And Other Screenwritings. (The first draft script of "Profile in Silver" is available in a sampler file.) The book also includes the bulk of Schulman's previous works written for the screen and commentaries about his adventures and trials in the film industry.
Schulman is also author of the popular Stopping Power: Why 70 Million Americans Own Guns (Synapse-Centurion hardcover 1994, Pulpless.Comtm 1996, 1999), which Charlton Heston called "the most cogent explanation of the gun issue I have yet read." It's nominated as "Freedom Book of the Month" for June, 2010, by the Freedom Book Club. In Stopping Power, a collection of forceful, dramatic, and often funny polemics (including four Los Angeles Times articles), Schulman challenges the distortions and misinformation that pundits ranging from network anchors to ill-informed doctors are promoting about guns. The book received rave reviews from The Los Angeles Daily News, and from talk-show hosts including Dennis Prager and Michael Jackson. One chapter from Stopping Power was excerpted in National Review as an article titled, "Medical Malpractice," then was chosen to be reprinted in the book Taking Sides: Clashing Views on Controversial Issues in Health and Society, Second Edition, Edited by Eileen K. Daniel, (Dushkin Publishing Group/Brown & Benchmark Publishers, 1996), as rebuttal to "Guns in the Household" by Jerome P. Kassirer, MD, editor of the New England Journal of Medicine. Another chapter, "Talk At Temple Beth Shir Shalom," was reprinted in the book, Guns in America : A Reader , Jan E. Dizard, editor (New York University Press, 1999), and Schulman's chapter was praised in the Village Voice's review as "a tough Jew manifesto."
For his 54th birthday, which coincided with the Virginia Tech shootings, Schulman made the gesture of giving a reverse birthday present, releasing the PDF edition of Stopping Power as a free download from his website, The World Wide Web Gun Defense Clock.
His latest nonfiction book to see print in both hardcover and trade paperback, Self Control Not Gun Control (Synapse-Centurion hardcover 1995, Pulpless.Comtm 1996, 1999), is Schulman's magnum opus on both current controversies and timless questions, and he hits whatever he targets with magnum force, whether it's guns, revolution, New Age thinking, liberal hate speech, his vision of "The Coming Golden Age," or 226 words which give us "The Meaning of Life." Dr. Walter E. Williams says of it, "Schulman interestingly and insightfully raises a number of liberty-related issues that we ignore at the nation's peril. His ideas are precisely those that helped make our country the destination of those seeking liberty. The book's title says it all: personal responsibility, not laws and prohibitions, is the mark of a civil society."
His 1999 nonfiction book, The Frame of the Century?, asks the question, "Was O.J. Simpson framed for murder by his biggest fan?" In this work of speculative nonfiction, Schulman uses the tools of deductive logic, forensic microbiology, and analytical psychology to propose the theory that a long-time worshipper of both O.J. Simpson and Nicole Brown Simpson, a substance-abusing ex-LAPD officer, might have murdered Nicole out of rejection and rage, and used his expert knowledge of forensics to frame O.J. Simpson for the crime. Prior to print publication, Schulman released advance reading copies of The Frame of the Century? for free download on the World Wide Web, and over 9,000 copies were downloaded. The book was reviewed favorably by Charles Brewer in The Cincinnati Enquirer, who called it, "a compelling circumstantial argument."
The Robert Heinlein Interview and Other Heinleiniana (SoftServ, 1990, Pulpless.Comtm 1996, 1999) collected Schulman's writings on an author who was not only particularly influential on Schulman but also a friend for fifteen years, and features Schulman's 25,000 word interview with Heinlein for the New York Daily News, in 1973. In the past year the trade paperback has been selling briskly on Amazon.com.
Schulman's first ventures into electronic publishing are documented in his two-volume electronic book, Book Publishing in the 21st Century, which includes the transcript of the course he gave for Connected Education/The New School for Social Research, as well as material from the SoftServ RoundTable he operated on GEnie and its successor, the SoftServ Paperless Book BBS. Both volumes are available for free download from the catalog page.
Eleven of his short stories are in the Kindle edition of his book, Nasty, Brutish, And Short Stories . It includes "The Repossessed," the lead story in Adventures in the Twilight Zone, edited by Carol Serling (Daw, 1995) and "Day of Atonement," from the Prometheus-award-winning libertarian shared-future anthology Free Space, edited by Brad Linaweaver and Ed Kramer, (Tor Books 1997). It also contains Schulman's short story, "The Musician," a psychological mystery about a violinist whose career takes a sudden bizarre turn, which was dramatized for Los Angeles radio, broadcast several times in 1980 on Pacifica/ KPFK FM's "Hour 25" show, read by the late Mike Hodel, and with classical violin accompaniment by the author's father, Julius Schulman. Also in the volume is his short story, "When Freemen Shall Stand."
Schulman's personal website, The World According to J. Neil Schulman, also contains interviews and other background info.
In September, 1993, the Second Amendment Foundation awarded Schulman the James Madison Award for his Los Angeles Times article, "If Gun Laws Work, Why Are We Afraid?" and in November, 1995, the 500,000-member Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms awarded Schulman its Gun Rights Defender prize.
Schulman is author and webmaster of various popular websites including the World Wide Web Gun Defense Clock. J. Neil Schulman also created a website to honor his father, virtuoso violinist Julius Schulman.
A Gallery of J. Neil Schulman Photos.
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Last Updated May 11, 2019