David Gemmell Award winners announcedComments Off
The winners were:
It was also announced that next year’s Gemmell Awards ceremony will take place as part of the 2013 World Fantasy Convention.
The convention takes place in Brighton, UK between 31 October and 3 November 2013. The only other times that the World Fantasy Convention has moved outside North America was in 1988 and 1997, when it was staged in London, so we feel privileged to be a part of this prestigious international event.
Held at Brighton’s Metropole Hotel and the West Pier, WFC 2013 boasts an impressive line-up of guests, including Richard Matheson, Richard Christian Matheson, Brian Aldiss, Alan Lee and Tessa Farmer. The Master of Ceremonies is China Mieville; and a host of other authors, artists, publishers and industry insiders will also be attending.
For full details of the convention visit the official website HERE
As the Gemmell Awards will be presented in October/November next year, and not in mid-June as usual, the voting cycle will be altered to accommodate the change of date. To keep abreast of the changes check the awards website where you can sign-up for the free newsletter. The change of venue and date is for one year only – 2014 will see the awards returning to the Magic Circle.
Brian Aldiss confirmed as GoH at World Fantasy Con 2013Comments Off
World Fantasy Convention 2013 is honoured to welcome multiple award-winning author, poet, artist, actor and raconteur Brian W. Aldiss as its second Special Guest.
Brian has written in almost every genre, including science fiction, fantasy, horror, historical and humorous fiction, as well as non-fiction and poetry. Among his many acclaimed novels are Non-Stop, The Primal Urge, Hothouse, Greybeard, Earthworks, An Age (aka Cryptozoic!), Report on Probability A, Barefoot in the Head, Frankenstein Unbound (filmed by Roger Corman in 1990), The Malacia Tapestry, Brothers of the Head, Moreau’s Other Island, The Helliconia Trilogy (Helliconia Spring, Helliconia Summer and Helliconia Winter), Dracula Unbound, Jocasta, Walcot and Finches of Mars.
A multiple winner of the Hugo, Nebula, British Science Fiction and John W. Campbell Memorial Awards, Brian Aldiss was named Grand Master by the Science Fiction Writers of America in 2000. On 11 June 2005 he was awarded the title of Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for services to literature in H.M. Queen Elizabeth II’s Birthday Honours list.
“Of course I am radiant to be asked as a Special Guest to the World Fantasy Con,” says Brian, “particularly since it is to be held in Brighton – do our overseas guests know what a gorgeous place Brighton is?”
Brian Aldiss joins previously announced Author Guests of Honour Richard Matheson and Richard Christian Matheson, Artist Guest of Honour Alan Lee, Special Guest Tessa Farmer and Master of Ceremonies China Mieville, in the picturesque and vibrant seaside town of Brighton, on the south coast of England, over the weekend of 31 October – 3 November 2013.
Although the convention is still more than a year away there are already more than 500 registered memberships! Please be aware that there is a firm limit on the number of Attending Members, so once the convention is sold out there will be no more memberships available. Remember, the 2012 World Fantasy Convention in San Diego sold out eight months prior to the event, so the sooner you join, the sooner you are guaranteed a place. Plus the membership rate will increase at regular intervals as the convention approaches.
Check the website for information on how to join.
First time author in January 2012 InterzoneComments Off
2012 has started well for author E.J. (Emma) Swift. Her short story The Complex appears in the January issue of Britain’s premier science fiction magazine Interzone, marking her debut as a professional author. Her work will appear in the upcoming issue alongside stories from Carole Johnstone, Tyler Keevil and Ray Cluley. The Complex was Emma’s first short story and, as such first time success is rare, it suggests that she has all the attributes necessary to make a career as an author.
Emma’s story has a mid-fifties woman facing freedom after serving forty years on a hellish prison planet. Her sentence is over … but she thinks it’s about to start.
Interzone #238 will begin mailing out around 13 January 2012. So, with that issue, Emma will join the ranks of Interzone authors like Brian Aldiss, Terry Pratchett, and J.G. Ballard, along with Liz Williams and Alastair Reynolds who established their writing careers in its pages.
Emma is 28 and has a BA in English and American Literature from the University of Manchester and an MA in Creative Writing (Royal Holloway, London). She now works at the Conservatoire for Dance and Drama, an affiliation of eight dance, drama and circus schools, and is responsible for communications and events. She takes time out from writing and the day job by exploring circus skills such as trapeze classes at Circus Space in London, and hula hooping.
Emma plans to make a career of her writing and is represented by Zeno Agency. Her novel, Osiris, the first in a planned trilogy, is currently waiting for a publisher’s decision.
FantasyCon 2011 – recollections by Allen Ashley(1)
It seems a long time since that hot weekend in Brighton. So now, with the days growing shorter and colder, here’s a reminder of FantasyCon 2011, courtesy of Allen Ashley. Further recollections of FantasyCon will follow in the next issue of the BFS Journal …
The morning of Saturday 1st October – unseasonably sunny and warm – finds me and the wife on Brighton Pier when we should be at FantasyCon. Well, actually we are but having reaped the benefit of a seafront view – i.e. cars and clubbers frolicking noisily outside the window all night – a little break and a lungful of fish and chips flavoured seaside air is called for. But what’s this? A ghost train ride suitably entitled “Horror Hotel” and only £3 a go. Sarah dutifully screams and I reflect that the next time someone tells me that they don’t know what to write about, I’ll suggest that they borrow some characters from this switchback selection. It’s fun.
But not as much fun as the Saturday night double bill from Teatro Proberto. John Probert and the versatile Lady Probert offer up a delightful, pantomime inflected take on a couple of 1960s horror films. With several knowing winks to the rapt audience, the performers demonstrate a mastery of comic timing. Highlights include a savaging by a canine glove puppet, rapid costume changes, unconvincing wigs, cheap props and deliberate overacting. Someone should have filmed this show and put it up on You Tube.
Blood on Satan’s Claw and Corruption are followed by a quintet of burlesque dancers who begin life as characters from a Dark Horizons illustration but then take it right down to the nipple tassel. Top exotic stage names, too, like Baby Bones and Esmeralda Underwood. One of the performers is actually a man in drag. He runs into the audience and mock bites me on the shoulder. By Sunday evening I have a streaming cold. Is there a connection?
My convention is bookended by two events. On Friday night I host a poetry soiree where the standard is very high – one of the pieces is in Full Fathom Forty and another is up for an Aurora award. My last major contribution to the weekend is to present the British Fantasy Award for Best Magazine. A few things have been written about the awards since then and I don’t wish to become embroiled. I’ll only repeat what I said at the time: Many of us owe a lot to magazines so I was thrilled to give a little bit back.
For many people, the big draw to FantasyCon is the quality of the guests of honour. With all due respect to the other luminaries, for me the most exciting visitor to FantasyCon was Brian Aldiss. Witness the spontaneous standing ovation this genre great received after his speech of thanks at the banquet. On the Saturday afternoon, Brian was interviewed by Christopher Priest in the Russell Room – a venue so stifling that the missus had to leave before the show started. The loquacious and loveable Brian is not your standard interviewee – feed him a starter and he’ll regale you with a selection of entertaining anecdotes without further prompting. The tale concerning Agatha Christie is the one that I shall remember always.
Later, I turn the tables somewhat on Chris Priest as we sit opposite each other in a Brighton curry house and I gently quiz him about his early books. He tells me that he edited an anthology back in the 1970s. Really? That had slipped my mind. When he reveals that it was called Anticipations, however, I instantly remember buying the paperback edition. I used to find time to read everything in those younger days.
FantasyCon is, of course, all about the people and with this year’s attendance put at 539, it’s no wonder that I spent much of my weekend saying hello and catching up with people in corridors and on the stairs. These locations were partly determined by that fact that the hotels’ tiny lift broke down at least twice in 24 hours. Must be all those five volume trilogies in hardback that folks are carting up to their rooms.
One moment it’s Friday afternoon and I’m in a massive queue to register, with Ian Whates and Simon Clark ahead of me and Nina Allan, Sam Stone and Frazer Hines behind me; the next moment it’s late afternoon on Sunday and I’m wondering when the turquoise and white taxi will eventually turn up to whisk us off to the railway station. Sensibly, I’ve spent the last of my cash in registering for next year’s FantasyCon.
Sarah and I arrive at Brighton terminus and guess what? Yep, it’s Sunday so there are engineering works and a replacement bus service. I picture us back on the pier. “Sorry, mate, no ghost train today just a replacement bus service…!”
Until next time.
Allen Ashley is an award winning editor and writer as well as a keen BFS member. Allen’s next book will be as editor of Where Are We Going? a themed anthology of SF/Fantasy/Horror/Slipstream stories with the uniting feature of “journeys”. This is due from Eibonvale Press (UK) within the next 6 months.