• Conventions

    Worldcon 75

    I’ll be attending the 75th World Science Fiction Convention in Helsinki, Finland from 9-13 August 2017, which is the first time a WorldCon has taken place in a Nordic country. It looks like it’s going to be a terrific event with a huge array of programming items. It will be my first time visiting Finland, and in a bonus coincidence, a new Moomin Museum has opened in Tampere. Here is my schedule for the event: Wednesday, 9 Aug, 2017 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM | Messukeskus, 206 ‘Coffee, Pie and Murder: 25 Years Later’ The cult television show Twin Peaks makes its return in 2017. Is this a good idea,…

  • Conventions

    Shamrokon schedule

    Tomorrow marks the start of Shamrokon in Dublin, the European science fiction convention (Eurocon) which is held in a different country each year. After all the fun and frolics at Worldcon in London last weekend, I’m approaching this event with anticipation, tempered with a little fatigue. Here’s my schedule: Made In Ireland: Fantasy Classics By Irish Authors: Friday 15:00 – 16:00, D. Ulster Le Fanu Track: Vampire Lovers – Le Fanu and the Silver Screen: Saturday 15:00 – 16:00, C. Munster Le Fanu Track: Dracula vs. Carmilla: Saturday 16:00 – 17:00, C. Munster Women of 2000AD: Sunday 12:00 – 13:00, C. Munster Golden Blasters: Sunday 14:00 – 16:00, B. Lansdowne…

  • Film

    Bone Mother optioned

    I’m delighted to announce that my short story ‘Bone Mother’ has been optioned by the National Film Board of Canada’s Animation Studio with the view to make a short stop-motion animated film, which will be adapted and directed by Sylvie Trouvé and Dale Hayward, and produced for the NFB by Jelena Popovic. I’m going to cut and paste what I wrote back in 2009 when ‘Bone Mother’ was podcast on Pseudopod. I wrote the first draft at Clarion West in 2006, and it was a pivotal story in my progress during the six-week workshop. I’d written a mediocre story the week before, and I felt extreme pressure (from myself) to produce…

  • Conventions

    Octocon 2013 schedule

    It’s that time of the year again, which means I’ll be in The Camden Court Hotel in Dublin this weekend (12-13 October) attending one of my favourite conventions: Octocon. There are two terrific guests of honour that I’m very excited about meeting: comic book writer Gail Simone, and author Richard K Morgan. Both of them have created work I both enjoy and admire, so it will be a privilege to hear them talk about their interests. Here’s my schedule: Saturday 13:00 – Masterclass in Contemporary Fantasy (Pavilion) with Peadar Ó Guilín and Liz Bourke 15:00 – I Don’t Believe It, But It’s True (Abbey) with Ruth Frances Long, Leann Hamilton,…

  • Conventions

    a whole new world…

    I’m not new to the concept of Cosplay and multi-media conventions. Last year I attended MCM Expo in London, along with Rob Curley and Stephen Downey, because our comic Jennifer Wilde was nominated for an Eagle Award. It’s one of the biggest cons of this type in the UK, and they got about 60,000+ people through the door. I thoroughly enjoyed the event, even if it was overwhelming at times due to the sheer volume of people attending. And at 2D Comic Book Festival in Derry there’s been an increasing Cosplay presence over the past three years. ArcadeCon is the first convention of this type I’ve attended in the Republic…

  • BFS
    Conventions,  News

    British Fantasy Awards 2012 – nominees

    The short-lists have been announced for the 2012 British Fantasy Awards: Novel 11.22.63 by Stephen King (Scribner) Among Others by Jo Walton (Tor Books) Cyber Circus by Kim Lakin-Smith (NewCon Press) A Dance with Dragons by George R R Martin (Bantam) The Heroes by Joe Abercrombie (Gollancz) The Ritual by Adam Nevill (Pan) There will be two awards in the best Novel category: The August Derleth Award for best horror novel and The Robert Holdstock Award for best fantasy novel. Novella ‘Alice through the plastic sheet’ by Robert Shearman (A Book of Horrors, Jo Fletcher Books) ‘Ghosts with Teeth’ by Peter Crowther (A Book of Horrors, Jo Fletcher Books) ‘Gorel…

  • Galway,  photographs

    arts festival parade 2011

    The annual Macnas parade during the Galway Arts Festival is always an event. Macnas is a street theatre company which has garnared an international reputation for its colourful and inventive parades. This year it did not disappoint with an extravaganza called This Fierce Beauty. One of the things I like about the parade is the typical relaxed Galway attitude, which means there are no barriers or cordons. People line the streets and are encouraged to keep back to a respectable distance by the stewards and the police, but without too much hassle. It started off with an intense red flare and smoke, and was followed by fabulous creatures propelled by…

  • Octocon 2010
    Conventions,  Ireland,  News

    Octocon 2010

    This weekend I’ll be a guest at the 2010 Octocon convention in the Camden Court Hotel, Dublin. The Guest of Honour is George R.R. Martin, best known as the author of the A Song of Ice and Fire fantasy novels. The first novel in the series, Game of Thrones, is currently being filmed in Northern Ireland as a HBO mini-series. Its tone has been described as ‘Sopranos with Swords’, and since HBO rarely does anything badly, this could be the fantasy television series of a generation. Here’s the teaser trailer that HBO has released: It’s a considerable coup for an Irish convention to have such an established author as a…