Tuesday, February 25, 2014

2013 Bram Stoker Award nominees

The Horror Writers Association has announced the list of nominees for the 2013 Bram Stoker Awards. The winners will be announced on May 10th at the 27th annual Bram Stoker Awards® Banquet held during the World Horror Convention 2014 in Portland, Oregon.

Superior Achievement in a Novel
“NOS4A2” by Joe Hill (William Morrow)
“Doctor Sleep” by Stephen King (Scribner)
“Malediction” by Lisa Morton (Evil Jester Press)
“A Necessary End” by Sarah Pinborough and F. Paul Wilson (Thunderstorm/Maelstrom Press)
“The Heavens Rise” by Christopher Rice (Gallery Books)

Superior Achievement in a First Novel
“Candy House” by Kate Jonez (Evil Jester Press)
“The Year of the Storm” by John Mantooth (Berkley Trade)
“The Evolutionist” by Rena Mason (Nightscape Press)
“Redheads” by Jonathan Moore (Samhain Publishing)
“Stoker’s Manuscript” by Royce Prouty (G.P. Putnam’s Sons)

Superior Achievement in a Young Adult Novel
“Special Dead” by Patrick Freivald (JournalStone)
“Unbreakable” by Kami Garcia (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)
“Project Cain” by Geoffrey Girard (Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers)
“Dog Days” by Joe McKinney (JournalStone)
“In the Shadow of Blackbirds” by Cat Winters (Harry N. Abrams)

Superior Achievement in a Graphic Novel
“Fatale Book Three: West of Hell” by Ed Brubaker (author) & Sean Phillips (artist) (Image Comics)
“Alabaster: Wolves” by Caitlín R. Kiernan (author) & Steve Lieber (artist) (Dark Horse Comics)
“Witch Doctor, Vol. 2: Mal Practice” by Brandon Seifert (author) & Lukas Ketner (artist) (Image Comics)
“Sin Titulo” by Cameron Stewart (author & artist) (Dark Horse Comics)
“Colder” by Paul Tobin (author) & Juan Ferreyra (artist) (Dark Horse Comics)

Superior Achievement in Long Fiction
“The Bluehole” by Dale Bailey (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, May/June 2013)
“The Great Pity” by Gary Braunbeck (Chiral Mad 2, Written Backwards)
“The Slaughter Man” by Benjamin K. Ethridge (Limbus, Inc., JournalStone)
“No Others Are Genuine” by Gregory Frost (Asimov’s Science Fiction, Oct./Nov. 2013)
“House of Rain” by Greg F. Gifune (DarkFuse)
“East End Girls” by Rena Mason (JournalStone)

Superior Achievement in Short Fiction
“Primal Tongue” by Michael Bailey (Zippered Flesh 2, Smart Rhino Publications)
“Snapshot” by Patrick Freivald (Blood & Roses, Scarlett River Press)
“Night Train to Paris” by David Gerrold (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, Jan./Feb. 2013)
“The Hunger Artist” by Lisa Manetti (Zippered Flesh 2, Smart Rhino Publications)
“The Geminis” by John Palisano (Chiral Mad 2, Written Backwards)
“Code 666” by Michael Reaves (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, March/April 2013)

Superior Achievement in a Screenplay
Fabien Adda and Fabrice Gobert  for The Returned: “The Horde” (Ramaco Media I, Castelao Pictures)
Brad Falchuk for American Horror Story: Asylum: “Spilt Milk” (Brad Falchuk Teley-Vision, Ryan Murphy Productions)
Bryan Fuller for Hannibal: “Apéritif” (Dino De Laurentiis Company, Living Dead Guy Productions, AXN: Original X Production, Gaumont International Television)
Daniel Knauf for Dracula: “A Whiff of Sulfur” (Flame Ventures, Playground, Universal Television, Carnival Films)
Glen Mazzara for The Walking Dead: “Welcome to the Tombs” (AMC TV)

Superior Achievement in an Anthology
“Horror Library: Volume 5” edited by R.J. Cavender & Boyd E. Harris (Cutting Block Press)
“After Death…” edited by Eric J. Guignard (Dark Moon Books)
“Barbers & Beauties” edited by Michael Knost & Nancy Eden Siegel (Hummingbird House Press)
“The Grimscribe’s Puppets” edited by Joseph S. Pulver, Sr. (Miskatonic River Press)
“Dark Visions: A Collection of Modern Horror, Volume One” edited by Anthony Rivera & Sharon Lawson (Grey Matter Press)

Superior Achievement in a Fiction Collection
“North American Lake Monsters: Stories” by Nathan Ballingrud (Small Beer Press)
“The Beautiful Thing That Awaits Us All and Other Stories” by Laird Barron (Night Shade Books)
“The Tears of Isis” by James Dorr (Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing)
“The Ape’s Wife and Other Stories” by Caitlín R. Kiernan (Subterranean)
“Dance of the Blue Lady” by Gene O’Neill (Bad Moon Books)
“Bible Stories for Secular Humanists” by S.P. Somtow (Diplodocus Press)

Superior Achievement in Non-Fiction
“Images of the Modern Vampire: The Hip and the Atavistic” edited by Barbara Brodman & James E. Doan (Fairleigh Dickinson)
“Ramsey Campbell: Critical Essays on the Modern Master of Horror” edited by Gary William Crawford (Scarecrow Press)
“Nolan on Bradbury: Sixty Years of Writing about the Master of Science Fiction” by William F. Nolan (Hippocampus Press)
“ The Intermedial Experience of Horror: Suspended Failures” by Jarkko Toikkanen (Palgrave Macmillan)
“Lovecraft and Influence: His Predecessors and Successors” edited by Robert H. Waugh (Scarecrow Press)

Superior Achievement in a Poetry Collection
“Dark Roads: Selected Long Poems 1971-2012” by Bruce Boston (Dark Renaissance Books)
“The Sex Lives of Monsters” by Helen Marshall (Kelp Queen Press)
“Dangerous Dreams” by Marge Simon & Sandy DeLuca (Elektrik Milk Bath Press)
“Four Elements” by Marge Simon, Rain Graves, Charlee Jacob & Linda Addison (Bad Moon Books/Evil Jester Press)
“Hysteria: A Collection of Madness” by Stephanie M. Wytovich (Raw Dog Screaming Press)

Congratulations and good luck to all the nominees!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Crowdfunding campaign - "She Walks in Shadows" edited by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Just a week ago I was talking about crowdfunding projects and the very few such campaigns that held my interest when another very attractive one sprang forth. “She Walks in Shadows” is an anthology project edited by Silvia Moreno-Garcia that has a new and extremely interesting approach to a theme that lately is very often seen among such collections of short stories, Lovecraftian fiction, this time around the Lovecraftian motif of the anthology is tackled by an all-woman line-up. Now, I love H.P. Lovecraft’s fiction and I enjoy this series of anthologies dedicated to new Lovecraftian fiction, but this sole reason would not have been enough for this crowdfunding project to capture my attention, not even with the guarantee offered by my previous experience with Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s editorial work, Innsmouth Magazine, “Historical Lovecraft” and “Fungi”. But the promise of an all-woman Lovecraftian anthology, topped with a few of my favorite nowadays writers being already on board for this project, was the decisive aspect for my wish to see this campaign successfully funded. Started by one question, “Do girls just not like to play with squids?”, and followed by a series of discussions on social networks about Lovecraftian fiction and women the idea of “She Walks in Shadows” is not only to offer a positive answer to that particular question, but also to highlight and give a new life to the women characters of Lovecraft’s stories. There are more than 15 writers stepping up to the challenge, among them, as I’ve already said, some of my favorites, Angela Slatter, Gemma Files, Molly Tanzer, E. Catherine Tobler or Benjanun Sriduangkaew (who enchanted me recently with stories such as “Silent Bridge, Pale Cascade”, “Fade to Gold” or “Zeraquesh in Absentia”), and the gathering list is starting to look very attractive:

Laura Blackwell writing Mrs. Herrero ("Cool Air")
Nadia Bulkin writing Nabby Gardner (“The Colour Out of Space”)
S.J. Chambers to tackle Eunice Babson (“The Thing On The Doorstep”)
Carrie Cuinn writing Anna Tilton (“The Shadow Over Innsmouth”)
Arinn Dembo writing the Ape Princess (“Facts Concerning the Late Arthur Jermyn and His Family”)
Gemma Files writing Marceline (“Medusa’s Coil”)
Nelly Geraldine Garcia-Rosas writing T’la-yub (“The Mound”)
Lyndsey Holder writing Keziah Mason (“Dreams in the Witch House”)
Sharon Mock writing Shub-Niggurath (of many, many stories)
Ann. K Schwader contributing poetry (Ammutseba, original Mythos entity)
Angela Slatter writing Lavinia Whateley (“The Dunwich Horror”)
Benjanun Sriduangkaew writing Pth'thya-l'yi or Shub-Niggurath
Molly Tanzer writing Asenath (“The Thing on the Doorstep”)
E. Catherine Tobler writing Lady Margaret Trevor (“The Rats in Walls”)
Wendy Wagner writing Nitocris (“The Outsider” and “Imprisoned with the Pharaohs”)
Cynthia Ward writing Mother Hydra (“Dagon” and “The Shadow Over Innsmouth”)

With 21 days left in this crowdfunding campaign “She Walks in Shadows” already runs strongly, the project is by now at the half point of its funding goal, sign that the affirmative answer to “Do girls just not like to play with squids?” is not supported only by these wonderful writers and editors, but also by the readers. From my point of view, I didn’t have any doubts that the answer will be nothing but affirmative.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Cover art - "The Prisoner of Heaven" by Carlos Ruiz Zafón (Subterranean Press)

For me, one of the most difficult questions to answer is “what is your favorite book?” I have faced this question a couple of times recently and each time, although I could name in a single breath a dozen titles I love with passion, I cannot name one that stands above them all without feeling that I do an injustice to some extent to another. However, if that question is limited to the past 10 years, then my answer is crystal clear, Carlos Ruiz Zafón’s “The Shadow of the Wind”. “The Shadow of the Wind” is a tremendous novel that put me in a reading spree after just its first couple of pages and made my fingers twitch when I was away from my copy of the book. Since then I devoured everything written by Carlos Ruiz Zafón and though I was a bit disappointed by “The Angel’s Game”, the second novel in his “Cemetery of Forgotten Books” series, I was pleasantly surprised to see the third, “The Prisoner of Heaven”, not only making me relive the beauty of Carlos Ruiz Zafón’s writing, but also making “The Angel’s Game” a better book on retrospective and with the new elements of the entire story taken into consideration. With my great love for “The Shadow of the Wind” and the other novels of Carlos Ruiz Zafón I was thrilled to see the work done by Subterranean Press for their special editions of these books. Especially when it comes to the book covers and interior illustrations where Vincent Chong worked his magic. On all the three covers for Carlos Ruiz Zafón’s “Cemetery of Forgotten Books” series, Vincent Chong seems to perfectly capture an important part of the essence and soul of the novels, setting the perfect atmosphere for the readers who open the books for the first time as well as for those who return once more to these wonderful books. And if you head to “The Prisoner of Heaven” page on Subterranean Press’ website you can find four of the interior illustrations made by Vincent Chong for this edition.

Carlos Ruiz Zafon’s “secret history of Barcelona” continues, to mesmerizing effect, in The Prisoner of Heaven, the third installment in his steadily deepening portrait of an endlessly fascinating city, at the heart of which lies the mysterious and seductive Cemetery of Forgotten Books.
The story begins, appropriately enough, in a bookstore, when Daniel Sempere (a figure familiar to readers of The Shadow of the Wind) encounters a mysterious stranger who leaves an enigmatic message for Fermin Romero de Torres, Daniel’s oldest and closest friend. That message leads to a series of revelations regarding Fermin’s previously undisclosed past. Those revelations move the story from its point of departure in 1957 to the darker, more oppressive Barcelona of 1940, when the brutal Fascist regime of Generalissimo Francisco Franco assumed undisputed leadership of Spain. What follows is a political horror story that involves Fermin, a corrupt prison administrator, and imprisoned novelist David Martin, whose Faustian bargain formed the central thread of Zafon’s 2009 novel, The Angel’s Game. The story Fermin tells, which encompasses murder, literary fraud, and a hidden cache of stolen money, reaches from the squalor of a subterranean cell into Daniel’s own life, illuminating some previously obscure corners of his troubled family history.
The Prisoner of Heaven is sure to speak directly to admirers of Umberto Eco, Arturo Perez-Reverte, and Alexandre Dumas, whose The Count of Monte Cristo plays a significant role in the narrative. But it should also appeal to anyone with a taste for elegant, suspenseful storytelling filled with color, drama, and unexpected turnings. This is popular fiction at its absolute best, a book that no one but Carlos Ruiz Zafon could have written.
The Prisoner of Heaven, like The Shadow of the Wind and The Angel’s Game before it, has become an international phenomenon, a best-seller in dozens of countries. Subterranean Press is proud to announce this deluxe limited edition, which will feature a fine paper (80# Finch), deluxe cloth, a sewn binding, and be printed in two colors throughout.

Monday, February 17, 2014

2013 Aurealis Awards finalists

This week-end, the finalists for the 2013 Aurealis Awards, recognizing the excellence in the Australian speculative fiction, have been announced. The winners of the 2013 Aurealis Awards and the Peter McNamara Convenors’ Award will be announced in a ceremony held in Canberra at the Australian National University on April 5th.

Best illustrated book or graphic novel:
“Savage Bitch” by Steve Carter and Antoinette Rydyr (Scar Studios)
“Mr Unpronounceable Adventures” by Tim Molloy (Milk Shadow Books)
“Burger Force” by Jackie Ryan (self published)
“Peaceful Tomorrows Volume Two” by Shane W Smith (Zetabella Publishing)
“The Deep Vol. 2: The Vanishing Island” by Tom Taylor and James Brouwer (Gestalt Publishing)

Best children’s book:
“Kingdom of the Lost, book 2: Cloud Road” by Isobelle Carmody (Penguin Group Australia)
“Refuge” by Jackie French (Harper Collins)
“Song for a scarlet runner” by Julie Hunt (Allen & Unwin)
“The four seasons of Lucy McKenzie” by Kirsty Murray (Allen & Unwin)
“Rules of Summer” by Shaun Tan (Hachette Australia)
“Ice Breaker: The Hidden 1” by Lian Tanner (Allen & Unwin)

Best young adult short fiction:
“Mah Song” by Joanne Anderton (“The Bone Chime Song and Other Stories” / FableCroft Publishing)
“By Bone-light” by Juliet Marillier (“Prickle Moon” / Ticonderoga Publications)
“Morning Star” by D.K. Mok (“One Small Step, an anthology of discoveries” / FableCroft Publishing)
“The Year of Ancient Ghosts” by Kim Wilkins (“The Year of Ancient Ghosts” / Ticonderoga Publications)

Best young adult novel:
“The Big Dry” by Tony Davies (Harper Collins)
“Hunting” by Andrea Host (self published)
“These Broken Stars” by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner (Allen & Unwin)
“Fairytales for Wilde Girls” by Allyse Near (Random House Australia)
“The Sky So Heavy” by Claire Zorn (University of Queensland Press)

Best horror short fiction:
“Fencelines” by Joanne Anderton ((“The Bone Chime Song and Other Stories” / FableCroft Publishing)
“The Sleepover” by Terry Dowling (“Exotic Gothic 5” / PS Publishing)
“The Home for Broken Dolls” by Kirstyn McDermott (“Caution: Contains Small Parts” / Twelfth Planet Press)
“The Human Moth” by Kaaron Warren (“The Grimscribe’s Puppets” / Miskatonic Press)
“The Year of Ancient Ghosts” by Kim Wilkins (“The Year of Ancient Ghosts” / Ticonderoga Publications)

Best horror novel:
“The Marching Dead” by Lee Battersby (Angry Robot Books)
“The First Bird” by Greig Beck (Momentum)
“Path of Night” by Dirk Flinthart (FableCroft Publishing)
“Fairytales for Wilde Girls” by Allyse Near (Random House Australia)

Best fantasy short fiction:
“The Last Stormdancer” by Jay Kristoff (Thomas Dunne Books)
“The Touch of the Taniwha” by Tracie McBride (“Fish” / Dagan Books)
“Cold, Cold War” by Ian McHugh (Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Issue 123)
“Short Circuit” by Kirstie Olley (“Oomph: A Little Super Goes a Long Way” / Crossed Genres)
“The Year of Ancient Ghosts” by Kim Wilkins (“The Year of Ancient Ghosts” / Ticonderoga Publications)

Best fantasy novel:
“Lexicon” by Max Barry (Hachette Australia)
“A Crucible of Souls” by Mitchell Hogan (self published)
“These Broken Stars” by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner (Allen & Unwin)
“Newt's Emerald” by Garth Nix (Jill Grinberg Literary Management)
“Ink Black Magic” by Tansy Rayner Roberts (FableCroft Publishing)

Best science fiction short story:
“The Last Tiger” by Joanne Anderton (Daily Science Fiction)
“Mah Song” by Joanne Anderton (“The Bone Chime Song and Other Stories” / FableCroft Publishing)
“Seven Days in Paris” by Thoraiya Dyer (“Asymmetry” / Twelfth Planet Press)
“Version” by Lucy Stone (Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine #57)
“Air, Water and the Grove” by Kaaron Warren (“The Lowest Heaven” / Pandemonium Press)

Best science fiction novel:
“Lexicon” by Max Barry (Hachette Australia)
“Trucksong” by Andrew Macrae (Twelfth Planet Press)
“A Wrong Turn At The Office Of Unmade Lists” by Jane Rawson (Transit Lounge)
“True Path” by Graham Storrs (Momentum)
“Rupetta” by Nike Sulway (Tartarus Press)

Best anthology:
“The Year's Best Australian Fantasy and Horror 2012” edited by Liz Grzyb and Talie Helene (Ticonderoga Publications)
“One Small Step An Anthology Of Discoveries” edited by Tehani Wessely (FableCroft Publishing)
“Dreaming Of Djinn” edited by Liz Grzyb (Ticonderoga Publications)
“The Best Science Fiction And Fantasy Of The Year: Volume Seven” edited by Jonathan Strahan (Night Shade Books)
“Focus 2012: Highlights Of Australian Short Fiction” edited by Tehani Wessely (FableCroft Publishing)

Best collection:
“The Bone Chime Song and Other Stories’ by Joanne Anderton (FableCroft Publishing)
“Asymmetry” by Thoraiya Dyer (Twelfth Planet Press)
“Caution: Contains Small Parts” by Kirstyn McDermott (Twelfth Planet Press)
“The Bride Price” by Cat Sparks (Ticonderoga Publications)
“The Year of Ancient Ghosts” by Kim Wilkins (Ticonderoga Publications)

Congratulations and good luck to all the nominees!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Table of contents - "The Best Horror of the Year, Volume 6" edited by Ellen Datlow

After last month the line-up for the fifth edition of Paula Guran’s “The Year’s Best Dark Fantasy & Horror” was announced it is now the time for Ellen Datlow to reveal the table of contents for the 6th volume of her excellent “The Best Horror of the Year”. This year’s edition will be released on 3rd June by Night Shade Books.

This statement was true when H. P. Lovecraft first wrote it at the beginning of the twentieth century, and it remains true at the beginning of the twenty-first century. The only thing that has changed is what is unknown.
With each passing year, science, technology, and the march of time shine light into the craggy corners of the universe, making the fears of an earlier generation seem quaint. But this “light” creates its own shadows. The Best Horror of the Year, edited by Ellen Datlow, chronicles these shifting shadows. It is a catalog of terror, fear, and unpleasantness, as articulated by today’s most challenging and exciting writers.
The best horror writers of today do the same thing that horror writers of a hundred years ago did. They tell good stories—stories that scare us. And when these writers tell really good stories that really scare us, Ellen Datlow notices. She’s been noticing for more than a quarter century. For twenty-one years, she coedited The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror, and for the last six years, she’s edited this series. In addition to this monumental cataloging of the best, she has edited hundreds of other horror anthologies and won numerous awards, including the Hugo, Bram Stoker, and World Fantasy awards.
More than any other editor or critic, Ellen Datlow has charted the shadowy abyss of horror fiction. Join her on this journey into the dark parts of the human heart . . . either for the first time . . . or once again.

“Apports” by Stephen Bacon (Black Static, #36)
“Mr. Splitfoot” by Dale Bailey (Queen Victoria’s Book of Spells, eds. Ellen Datlow & Terri Windling, Tor Books)
“The Good Husband” by Nathan Ballingrud (North American Lake Monsters, Small Beer Press)
“The Tiger” by Nina Allan (Terror Tales of London, ed. Paul Finch, Gray Friar Press)
“The House on Cobb Street” by Lynda E. Rucker (Nightmare, June 2013)
“The Soul in the Bell Jar” by K.J. Kabza (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, November/December 2013)
“Call Out” by Stephen Toase (Innsmouth Magazine, #12)
“That Tiny Flutter of the Heart I Used to Call Love” by Robert Shearman (Psycho-Mania!, ed. Stephen Jones, Constable & Robinson)
“Bones of Crow” by Ray Cluley (Black Static, #37)
“Introduction to the Body in Fairy Tales” by Jeannine Hall Gailey (Phantom Drift, #3)
“The Fox” by Conrad Williams (This is Horror chapbook)
“The Tin House” by Simon Clark (Shadow Masters, ed. Jeani Rector, Imajin Books)
“Stemming the Tide” by Simon Strantzas (Dead North, ed. Silvia Moreno-Garcia, Exile Editions)
“The Anatomist’s Mnemonic” by Priya Sharma (Black Static, #32)
“The Monster Makers” by Steve Rasnic Tem (Black Static, #35)
“The Only Ending We Have” by Kim Newman (Psycho-Mania!, ed. Stephen Jones, Constable & Robinson)
“The Dog’s Paw” by Derek Künsken (Chilling Tales: In Words, Alas, Drown I, ed. Michael Kelly, EDGE Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing)
“Fine in the Fire” by Lee Thomas (Like Light For Flies, Lethe Press)
“Majorlena” by Jane Jakeman (Supernatural Tales, #24)
“The Withering” by Tim Casson (Black Static, #32)
“Down to a Sunless Sea” by Neil Gaiman (The Guardian.com)
“Jaws of Saturn” by Laird Barron (The Beautiful Thing That Awaits Us All, Night Shade Books)
“Halfway Home” by Linda Nagata (Nightmare, September 2013)
“The Same Deep Waters as You” by Brian Hodge (Weirder Shadows Over Innsmouth, ed. Stephen Jones, Fedogan & Bremer)