Mon, 04 December 2017 Discussing The Quatermass Xperiment

The inaugural episode of the Hammered podcast is now available for listening. The host of the series JG Byrne and I talk about The Quatermass Xperiment (1955). It was a fun and nerdy deep dive into the film. Perfect for fans of Hammer films, science fiction, and Nigel Kneale (though of course he didn’t write the movie, but it’s based on his original BBC TV series. I give a lot of love to Kneale in this episode.)

You can listen to it here:

There will be a different guest with John in the next episode, and I should be returning for more Hammer exegesis with The Mummy (1959).

Make sure to subscribe to the series or like the Facebook page, which will give updates when each episode is online.

Tue, 21 November 2017 Hammered Podcast

I’ll be taking part in an on-going podcast called Hammered, dedicated to examining the more ghoulish output of the British Hammer Film Productions studio.

Starting with The Quatermass Xperiment (1955) and ending (maybe) with To the Devil a Daughter (1976), the discussions will be hosted by J G Byrne and aided by a rotating guest list. Each episode will work through one film from the studio’s horror releases.

The original music for the podcast is created by David Blake.

The first batch of films I’ll be chatting about with John are: The Quatermass Xperiment (1955), The Mummy (1959), The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll (1960), The Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb (1964), and The Gorgon (1964).

The other august contributors are: Donald Clarke, Paul Duane, Tracy Fahey, Kasandra O’Connell, John Maguire, Aoife Martin, and Dan Smith.

You can subscribe now, and episodes should commence in December.

Fri, 10 November 2017 Best New Horror #28

Here’s the cover for Best New Horror #28, edited by Stephen Jones. My short story ‘The Light at the Centre’ is in it – the story was originally published in Uncertainties Vol. 1, edited by Brian J. Showers, and published by Swan River Press.

Here’s the table of contents:

  • Acknowledgements
  • Introduction: Horror in 2016 – The Editor
  • Pale Tree House – Angela Slatter
  • The Light at the Centre – Maura McHugh
  • En Plein Air – J.T. Glover
  • India Blue – Glen Hirshberg
  • Walking with the Cross – Peter Bell
  • Bedtime Story – Richard Christian Matheson
  • The Symphony of the Normal – Darren Speegle
  • The Ballet of Dr. Caligari – Reggie Oliver
  • Who is This Who is Coming? – Lynda E. Rucker
  • The House That Moved Next Door – Stephen Volk
  • Princess – Dennis Etchison
  • A Home in the Sky – Lisa Tuttle
  • On These Blackened Shores of Time – Brian Hodge
  • The Enemy Within – Steve Rasnic Tem
  • The Court of Midnight – Mark Samuels
  • Far from Any Shore – Caitlín R. Kiernan
  • The Fig Garden – Mark Valentine
  • White Feathers – Alison Littlewood
  • Over to You – Michael Marshall Smith
  • In the Dark, Quiet Places – Kristi DeMeester
  • Mare’s Nest – Richard Gavin
  • The Red Forest – Angela Slatter
  • Necrology: 2016 – Stephen Jones & Kim Newman
  • Useful Addresses

The book will be published by PS Publishing. The cover artwork is by Lee Elias, and was originally used in Tomb of Terror #15 (1954).

It’s a fantastic privilege to be counted among so many talented writers. My heart is full.

Mon, 06 November 2017 Adapting your Voice workshop

At the Junior Film Fleadh in Galway this Saturday I’ll be giving a workshop on Adapting Your Voice: Tailoring Stories for Various Media.

It’ll be a two-hour whistlestop overview of the basics of storytelling, with tips and suggestions on how to tailor your story idea for different media: prose, Film/TV/Internet, theatre, games, comics, and radio/podcast.

All for €12.50!

The Junior Film Fleadh is the young people’s arm of the prestigious Galway Film Fleadh, and offers four days of fun and useful events aimed at budding filmmakers and young film fans.

Wed, 01 November 2017 ‘Y’ in Eyedolon 1

I’m really pleased to say that my short story ‘Y’ is appearing in issue 1 of Eyedolon (‘Toward a Weirder Tomorrow’), a new online anthology series from Broken Eye Books, edited by Scott Gable.

If you wish to read the work and/or subscribe to the series, you can join its Patreon.
Here’s the ToC for the first issue:

“It’s 84 pages with four stories:

  • Maura McHugh’s “Y,” a very personal apocalypse
  • S.P. Miskowski’s “Patio Wing Monsters,” a quizzical tale of convalescence
  • Matthew M. Bartlett’s “Who Beareth the Body,” mindbending small-town horror (part 1 of the serial The Obsecration)
  • Joe Pulver’s “The Package from Desertshore,” a surreal and poetic novelette (part 1 of The Night Museum)

Plus illustrations by Annada Menon and Thom Davidsohn. And Nick Gucker’s wonderful cover.”

Thu, 26 October 2017 Talking at The Kitchen Table

Thanks to Clare Mclaughlin for chatting to me for a segment on The Kitchen Table show on 103.2 Dublin City FM, which is airing tonight from 9 pm -10 pm.

We talk about a couple of TV shows I’m watching currently – such as Supergirl and the recent Netflix show Mindhunter – and we also discuss the panel I’ll be contributing to on Saturday as part of the Bram Stoker Festival, Dublin: Slayers and their Vampires.

Thu, 19 October 2017 Kickstarter funded!

Today the Kickstarter for the Jennifer Wilde Point & Click Game (based on the comic book series I wrote for Atomic Diner) ended and it was successful! Thanks to everyone who has supported this endeavour by Outsider Games, and a big congratulations to Stephen Downey who worked so hard to achieve it.

The project passed the funding goal three days before the deadline, much to the relief of everyone involved.

Now, all that remains is the little job of finishing off the game…

Wed, 18 October 2017 Profile of Philip Pullman on Arena

There’s much excitement about the publication tomorrow of the next novel in Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials saga – titled The Book of Dust: La Belle Sauvage.

This evening I appeared on RTÉ Radio 1 arts show, Arena, and discussed Pullman’s work for those unfamiliar with the stories, and those who are keen to get the first big instalment in Lyra’s adventures for seventeen years.

You can listen back to my discussion with Arena host Sean Rocks online.

After all the prep I did for the show my memories of enjoying the first series were revistalised, and now I’m eagerly anticipating returning to Pullman’s marvellous universes.

Thu, 12 October 2017 Slayers and their Vampires

As part of the Bram Stoker Festival in Dublin (27-30 Oct), I’ll be taking part in the Slayers and their Vampires panel from 1 pm – 2.30 pm on 28 October, in the Albert Lecture Theatre, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, 123 St Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2.

I’ll be joining Bruce McClelland, (Slayers and Their Vampires: A Cultural History of Killing the Dead) and David Skal (Something In the Blood: a Biography of Bram Stoker) in discussing the modern cultural significance of vampire legends.

As some know, my first M.A. thesis investigated themes in 19th century supernatural Irish fiction, which included a detailed look at Bram Stoker’s Dracula. I’ve been reading vampire fiction since I was a teen, and my story ‘Bone Mother’ (currently being adapted into a stop-motion animated short film) features a rather well-known vampire. As well as this I’ve written an Irish vampire hunter, and investigated our indigenous vampire myth, for the Róisín Dubh comic book series.

I’m looking forward to getting my teeth back into this old fascination of mine.

Mon, 02 October 2017 Octocon 2017

The National Irish Science Fiction Convention, Octocon 2017, is taking place this coming weekend.

Here’s my schedule for the convention:

FRIDAY 06 OCTOBER

08:00 PM
‘You Don’t Scare Me Anymore’ in the Salusa Secundus room
Paul Anthony Shortt, Maura McHugh, Frank E Whelan, Lynda E Rucker

SATURDAY 07 OCTOBER

06:00 PM
‘Plug In to Fear’ in the Salusa Secundus room
Esther MacCallum-Stewart, Nik Vincent-Abnett, Frank E Whelan, Dan Abnett, Maura McHugh

07:00 PM
‘David Lynch Panel’ in the Salusa Secundus room
Phil Dyson, Maura McHugh, R B Kelly, Lynda E Rucker

SUNDAY 08 OCTOBER

02:00 PM
‘Golden Blasters’ in the Arrakis room
I’ll be attending this event as a member of the judging panel.

I’m looking forward to another fun weekend with friends and colleagues!

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