• SFX responds: a long post

    After a prompt from a friend I wrote to SFX on Sunday regarding my concerns about its Horror edition. Here is my email: To whom it may concern, I purchased the horror edition of SFX magazine at the weekend since I’m a fan of horror literature and media, and also write in the genre. I was surprised at the lack of representation of women in the articles in the magazine. In particular I was stunned by the “Horror’s Hidden Treasures” piece. You found the time to query 34 men for their opinions, but neglected to ask even one woman to recommend an under-rated gem in the horror field. Can you…

  • p-con schedule

    The science fiction convention P-Con is being held in Dublin next week, and the programme of events has been released. Here are the panels I’ll be on: Saturday 10:00 Red RoomIs it time for “Return of the Werewolves”?Nick Harkaway; Brian J. Showers; Laura Anne Gilman; Maura McHugh; R.F.Long 15:00 Blue RoomSocial websites: Bane or boon in the genre fiction world?Cheryl Morgan; Colin Harvey; Colin Smythe; Maura McHugh; Laura Anne Gilman 17:00 Red RoomPictionary Sunday 12:00 Blue RoomKeyboard or pen – Room for both?R.F.Long; Oisín McGann; Maura McHugh 14:00 Blue RoomHas the Internet become indispensable?Cheryl Morgan; Bob Neilson; R.F. Long; Maura McHugh Also, I’ll be chatting on the “Arts Brew” programme…

  • Seamus Online

    Nobel Prize-winning Irish poet, Seamus Heaney, is giving a reading today at 1.05pm at the National Gallery in Dublin, organised by Poetry Ireland. Fear not, the event is being broadcast live over the Internet, so you can watch and listen from anywhere in the world. At times like this I must add: technology rocks!

  • podcasts and plans

    The podcast of my story, “The Tamga” is now available as issue 178 on Pseudopod, read by the talented Cheyenne Wright. It’s always a thrill to have my work podcast, because it gets it out to such a wide audience. Plus, the Pseudopod team produce excellent recordings. Cheyenne does a great job with the story. He’s not only a talented voice actor, he’s also the colourist for the fabulous web comic Girl Genius, which is one of my personal favourites. My own graphic novel project, Róisín Dubh, is proceeding well. Last week I had a meeting in Dublin with Rob Curley of Atomic Diner and Sub City fame, as well…

  • news for the new year

    I’ve some news I’ve been sitting on for no good reason, other than my motivation for blogging suffered a sap across the forehead late last year. In December I sold the audio right to my story “The Tamga” to Pseudopod. I’m delighted I’ll soon have another story up among their fine catalogue of spoken works. “The Tamga” was originally published in issue 6 of Shroud Magazine. My story, “The Secret Names of Buildings” is now available in M-Brane SF, issue 12, which is guest edited by Rick Novy. It’s another of my Clarion West stories, and this was written for week 6, when the brilliant sf writer Vernor Vinge was…

  • coming out of darkness

    I’ve never neglected my blog for such a long time – although I continue to chatter on Twitter – but the last quarter of 2009 has been a period of stressful work deadlines followed by a string of difficulties that rendered me mute. I should note that it was not terrible all the time, because to indicate otherwise would be to present a one-sided picture of recent months. Life is a mixture of good and bad moments, although we tend to under-appreciate the good and over-emphasise the bad. So, I’m bidding 2009 farewell with a grateful heart that I’ve survived its tests, and with an appreciation of those friends and…

  • waiter, is that horror in my sf?

    The events of the previous week came at a time when I was busier than normal, so it’s taken me some time to catch up, and even out my workload. Except now I have the joyful task of sorting out my tax returns, ASAP. Hurray! So, it’s nice to hear that issue 9 of M-Brane SF has been released. It contains my horror sf story “Empty Mind Came Back with the Pearl”. When I began submitting it to publications I learned that a lot of markets aren’t so keen on horror in their sf; many expressly forbid it. It’s a pity, and certainly a factor to consider when writing a…

  • faster than the speed of bus

    We live in a fast-paced world. Yesterday morning, while finishing up work before my trip to Dublin, I received an email query from Alison Flood, a journalist for the British newspaper The Guardian. She wanted my opinion about the exclusion of women from the BFS In Conversation interview collection, and how the situation played out. I offered an assessment, and emailed it to her. Then, I scrambled to complete my tasks and get to the coach station. Yes, I’ve started taking a bus to Dublin partly because of the free Wi-Fi. (There is nothing quite as marvelous as using a bus’s inbuilt wireless system to connect to the world as…

  • BFS apologises for forgetting women

    It’s worth mentioning that Guy Adams, Chair and Special Publications Editor for the British Fantasy Society (BFS), has issued an unreserved apology over omitting women from its latest collection. I’m sure he will not chastise me for replicating it in full here: Our new book, In Conversation: A Writer’s Perspective, Volume 1: Horror, edited by James Cooper, has come under justifiable flak for its all-male line up of interviewees. When James brought the manuscript to me with a view to our publishing it I know he intended no sexism in his selection of the authors but I feel deeply sorry that I didn’t flag the omission at the time. It…

  • building Hotel Darklight

    The Hotel Darklight anthology film is racing ahead at a furious pace. My short script is titled “Hotel Training”, and is being directed by Conor McMahon. Conor is best known as the writer/director of the horror short film “Baineater”, and the feature-length zombie flick, Dead Meat. The casting is complete, and Conor has been scouting the location this weekend. The shoot will take place on Wednesday, and it’s going to be tight to get all the scenes completed in one day. An early start, and a late finish I think. There’s a Hotel Darklight fan page on Facebook now, if any of you fancy keeping up with what’s happening. Although…