Wed, 21 September 2016 FantasyCon 2016

This weekend I’ll be attending FantasyCon By the Sea, in Scarborough.

I’ll be involved in the following events during the convention:

Holding Out For a Hero
Is the Rise of the Superhero Medium Boosting Genre Fiction?
From 10:00 am – 11:00 am on Saturday, 24 September in the Palm Court Ballroom – The Grand, St Nicholas Cliff
Maura McHugh, Mike Carey, Alasdair Stuart (Chair), Peter Sutton, Natasha Bardon

Book Launch – NewCon Press
Ten Tall Tales
From 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm on Saturday, 24 September in Main Ballroom (Grand Hotel), St Nicholas Cliff
With Ramsey Campbell, Edward Cox, Simon Clark, Andrew Hook, Paul Kane, Maura McHugh, Lynda E Rucker, Mark West

Girls Just Wanna Have Fun
Celebrating Women in Genre Fiction
From 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm on Saturday, 24 September 24 in Royal Ballroom (Royal Hotel), St Nicholas St
With Marie O’Regan, Anne Nicholls, Maura McHugh, Heide Goody, Priya Sharma, Caitriona Ward

I’ve been an active member of the HWA for several years, so I’ll also be going to:

Horror Writers Association And Jo Fletcher Books Party

From 9:00 pm – 11:00 pm on Friday, 23 September 23 in Palm Court Ballroom – The Grand, St Nicholas Cliff

The HWA UK Chapter Presents…Every Day I Write the Book
Advice on How To Get Published and Stay Published From Members of the HWA
From 9:00 pm – 10:00 pm on Saturday, 24 September in Palm Court Ballroom – The Grand, St Nicholas Cliff
With Ian Drury, Jo Fletcher, Stephen Jones, Paul Kane (Chair), Marie O’Regan

Thu, 01 September 2016 Ten Tall Tales

I’m happy to say that my dark fantasy story ‘The Fruit of the Tree’ will be in the Ten Tall Tales anthology from NewCon Press, edited by Ian Whates.

You can pre-order it online now.

The book will launch at 3.00 pm on Saturday, 24 September at Fantasycon in Scarborough, and I’ll be there (along with many of the other authors).

The ToC is:

  • Introduction – Ian Whates
  • Ten Twisted Limericks – Ramsey Campbell
  • The Power Of… – Paul Kane
  • We Know By the Tenth Day Whether They Live or Die – Simon Clark
  • One Little Mouth to Kiss You Goodnight – Lynda E. Rucker
  • The Fruit of the Tree – Maura McHugh
  • 9 + 1 – Michael Marshall Smith
  • The Book of Sleep – Edward Cox
  • For The Win – James Barclay
  • Do You Believe in Ghosts? – Mark West
  • The Loathing of Strangers – Sarah Pinborough
  • The Marble Orchard – Andrew Hook

The cover is by Sarah Anne Langton.

Tue, 30 August 2016 Jennifer Wilde – the Computer Game

I’m pleased to announce that Outsider Games is partnering with Irish comic book publisher Atomic Diner and Northern Ireland Screen to adapt the comic book Jennifer Wilde as a Point & Click Adventure game.

I’ll be writing the script for the game, which is based on the original comic book series I wrote for Atomic Diner.

Here’s the official blurb:

At the start of the Jazz Age in Paris in 1921, young French artist Jennifer Chevalier becomes embroiled in death, espionage and revolution which takes her across the three nations of France, England and Ireland – ably assisted by the ghost of Oscar Wilde.

Jennifer believes the recent death of her father was no ‘accident’. Finding a chained locket in her father’s hotel, Jennifer attempts to use her childhood gift for talking to ghosts to call his spirit back. Unwittingly, the ghost recalled is that of Oscar Wilde, famous Irish playwright, whose affair with Jennifer’s father has bound his ghost to the locket.

Jennifer and Oscar find themselves involved in schemes of murder, ghosts and intrigue as they attempt to solve Jennifer’s father’s murder, and develop a deep friendship along the way…

Developed by Outsider Games and the team behind body-hopping, musical adventure game, Wailing Heights. Jennifer Wilde features black and white, ink washed 2D graphics that perfectly capture the aesthetic of the original comic book.

For updates on Jennifer Wilde, follow Outsider Games on Twitter and Facebook.

It’s been a lot of fun to return to these characters, and it’s been an interesting learning curve figuring out the intricacies of writing for computer games.

Mon, 22 August 2016 Uncertainties in two volumes

I had a terrific time at the Dublin Ghost Story Festival (19-21 August): it was a well-organised and fun event, with just the right number of people attending so you felt you got the chance to chat to everyone.

We also had the launch of the Uncertainties anthologies of supernatural fiction in two volumes, edited by Brian J. Showers, and published by Swan River Press. My story ‘The Light at the Centre’ is in volume 1.

Here’s the table of contents for volume 1:

  • “Foreword” – John Connolly
  • “The Faerie Ring” – John Reppion
  • “From the Archives of the Westmeath Examiner” – Derek John
  • “Wellaway” – Martin Hayes
  • “Last Love” – John Kenny
  • “On a Clear Day” – Robert Neilson
  • “A Letter from McHenry” – Reggie Chamberlain-King
  • “The Light at the Centre” – Maura McHugh
  • “Fran’s Nan’s Story” – Sarah LeFanu
  • “Flyblown” – Timothy J. Jarvis
  • “To the Eternal One” – Mark Valentine
  • “The Seance” – Lynda E. Rucker

And the table of contents for volume 2:

  • “Foreword” – Brian J. Showers
  • “The Swing” – Peter Bell
  • “The Mighty Mr Godbolt” – R.B. Russell
  • “Then and Now” – John Howard
  • “The Ice Beneath Us” – Steve Duffy
  • “Closing Time” – Emma Darwin
  • “Homecraft” – Rosalie Parker
  • “Half-Light” – Steve Rasnic Tem
  • “Imago” – Mat Joiner
  • “The Edge of the World” – Helen Grant
  • “The Court of Midnight” – Mark Samuels
  • “What’s Out There?” – Gary McMahon
  • “Ruby” – Adam Golaski
  • “The Murky” – V.H. Leslie
  • “Love at Second Sight” – Reggie Oliver

Fingers crossed we see another event like this in Ireland next year!

Tue, 09 August 2016 The Madness of Dr. Caligari

It somehow slipped my mind to mention that my short story ‘A Rebellious House’ will be in The Madness of Dr. Caligari anthology, edited by Joe S. Pulver, and published by Fedogan and Bremer (the cover is by Harry O. Morris).

Here’s the impressive Table of Contents:

  • Ramsey Campbell – The Words Between
  • Damien Angelica Walters – Take a Walk in the Night, My Love
  • Rhys Hughes – Confessions of a Medicated Lurker
  • Robert Levy – Conversion
  • Maura McHugh – A Rebellious House
  • David Nickle – The Long Dream
  • Janice Lee – Eyes Looking
  • Richard Gavin – Breathing Black Angles
  • S.P. Miskowski – Somnambule
  • Nathan Carson – The Projection Booth
  • Jeffrey Thomas – The Mayor of Elementa
  • Nadia Bulkin – Et Spiritus Sancti
  • Orrin Grey – Blackstone: A Hollywood Gothic
  • Reggie Oliver – The Ballet of Dr. Caligari
  • Cody Goodfellow – Bellmer’s Bride, or The Game of the Doll
  • Michael Griffin – The Insomniac Who Slept Forever
  • Paul Tremblay – Further Questions for the Somnambulist
  • Michael Cisco – The Righteousness of Conical Men
  • Molly Tanzer – That Nature Which Peers Out in Sleep
  • Daniel Mills – A Sleeping Life
  • John Langan – To See, To Be Seen
  • Gemma Files – Caligarism

The anthology should be available to purchase this autumn.

Tue, 02 August 2016 Working the Blue Rose Case

Sheryl Lee as Laura Palmer in Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me

I’m pleased to announce that I’m part of the autumn season of lectures organised by the Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies in London.

MIHS is a ‘community-based organisation that offers university-level history, theory and production-based workshops for people of all ages. The Miskatonic is a non-profit endeavour through which established horror writers, directors, scholars and programmers/curators celebrate horror history and culture with a unique blend of enthusiasm and critical perspective.’

Here’s the blurb for the autumn schedule:

Mark Pilkington (Owner of Strange Attractor Press, writer/director of MIRAGE MEN) launches the season in September with his lecture “Rituals in the Dark: Evoking Magic on Film”. From the grit of medieval grimoires and spellcraft to the spiritual liberation of mid twentieth century witchcraft, this lecture will look at a number of representations of magic on film, from the silent era, through Expressionism, B-movies, the avant garde and into the mainstream. He will be followed in October by visiting instructor Daniel Bird, whose studies in Poland led to his becoming the pre-eminent biographer of both Walerian Borowczyk and Andrzej Zulawski. In “Vulgar Structures; or Andrzej Zulawski’s Love Triangles”, he will use his intimate knowledge of the late Zulawski’s work to look at the love triangle fundamental to all of Zulawski’s films, and to square it with this remarkable director’s life and loves. In November, Warwick University scholar Catherine Lester will present“Little Terrors: Children’s Horror on Film and Television”. This class will explore in detail the area of horror films and television programmes created specifically for children in the UK and the US, with an emphasis on programming from the 70s and 80s. And to close the season, the Horse Hospital turns into The Black Lodge when acclaimed horror author Maura McHugh visits from Ireland to bring us “Working the Blue Rose Case: Signs, Codes, and Mysteries in David Lynch’s FIRE WALK WITH ME”

My talk will take place from 7pm – 10pm on 8 December 2016, in the Horse Hospital, Colonnade, Bloomsbury, London WC1N 1JD.

Tickets cost £10 advance / £11 on the door / £8 concs / £35 full fall semester ticket.

It will be a good time to re-familiarise yourself with the weird occupants and sinister goings-on in the Twin Peaks world in advance to the next series of the show, which will be broadcast in 2017.

Mon, 25 July 2016 American Horror Mixtape

American Horror Mixtape

After the success of his Brit Horror Mixtape, writer Mark West decided to give the American continent the same treatment, and asked me to contribute a suggestion for the American Horror Mixtape.

Considering I had American and Canadian writers to select from I decided to pick a memorable writer in the field who is a bit more recent, and who hails from north of the United States.

So I selected ‘Dead Bodies Possessed by Furious Motion’, by Gemma Files.

It’s the last story in her debut collection, Kissing Carrion (2003), and one that lingers in my mind to this day. Thankfully, ChiZine Publications has re-printed that terrific collection, and you can purchase it from their web site, or elsewhere. I highly recommend it.

Gemma just won the prestigious Shirley Jackson Award for her novel, Experimental Film, so it’s wonderful to see her talent getting the recognition she deserves.

Mon, 11 July 2016 World Fantasy Award Nomination for Cassilda’s Song

Cassildas Song

I’m pleased to hear that Cassilda’s Song: Tales Inspired by Robert W. Chambers King in Yellow Mythos, edited by Joe S. Pulver, has been nominated for a World Fantasy Award in the Anthology category. Congratulations to Joe for assembling such a super line-up of writers, and I’m so glad to be part of the project.

The book is published by Chaosium Inc. and the artwork is by Steve G Santiago. It contains my story, ‘Family’.

And congratulations to Selena Chambers, whose story in the anthology, ‘The Neurastheniac’, has also been nominated for a WFA, in the Short Fiction category.

Here’s the entire Table of Contents of the anthology:

  • Black Stars on Canvas, a Reproduction in Acrylic … Damien Angelica Walters
  • She Will Be Raised a Queen … E. Catherine Tobler
  • Yella … Nicole Cushing
  • Yellow Bird … Lynda E. Rucker
  • Exposure … Helen Marshall
  • Just Beyond Her Dreaming … Mercedes M. Yardley
  • In the Quad of Project 327 … Chesya Burke
  • Stones, Maybe … Ursula Pflug
  • Les Fleurs Du Mal … Allyson Bird
  • While The Black Stars Burn … Lucy A. Snyder
  • Old Tsah-Hov … Anya Martin
  • The Neurastheniac … Selena Chambers
  • Dancing The Mask … Ann K. Schwader
  • Family … Maura McHugh
  • Pro Patria! … Nadia Bulkin
  • Her Beginning is Her End is Her Beginning … E. Catherine Tobler & Damien Angelica Walters
  • Grave-Worms … Molly Tanzer
  • Strange is the Night … S.P. Miskowski

Wed, 06 July 2016 Horror Expo Ireland 2016

I’m pleased to announce I’ll be a guest at the inaugural Horror Expo Ireland event, which is taking place at The Freemasons Grand Lodge, Molesworth St, Dublin on Sunday, 30 October 2016.

There’s a terrific line-up of guests, and it should be a fun event in a splendid building.

Tickets go on sale at 6pm on Thursday, 7 July (and there’s a limit of 250 Tickets) via Eventbrite. Get them while you can!

Thu, 16 June 2016 Dublin Ghost Story Festival

I’ll be one of the guests at the Dublin Ghost Story Festival, which is taking place from 19 – 21 August 2016, at the Freemason Grand Lodge of Ireland, 17 Molesworth Street in Dublin.

The Guest of Honour is Adam Nevill and the Master of Ceremonies is John Connolly. Other guests include: A.K. Benedict, Paul Kane, David Mitchell, Marie O’Regan, Sarah Pinborough, John Reppion, Lynda E. Rucker, and Angela Slatter, and the event is organised by Brian J. Showers of Swan River Press.

It’s a terrific line-up of guests, and the venue should be conducive to our conversations about odd and uncanny stories.

Tickets are limited, and popular, so grab one while you can!

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