Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The British Fantasy Society Awards 2011

As I'm soon to be a fantasy writer living in Britain, I've got an eye toward what's happening over there these days.

The shortlist for the BFS Fantasy Awards have just been announced. Interesting list to me, notable in that there are so many names on it I don't recognize. A look at the Best Novel category gives me some idea of why. It seems to be highly Horror inclined...

Take a look:


Apartment 16 – Adam Nevill

Demon Dance – Sam Stone

The Leaping – Tom Fletcher

Pretty Little Dead Things - Gary McMahon

The Silent Land – Graham Joyce

HERE's the Website.

Labels: ,

Monday, June 27, 2011

NPR Wants To Poll You... About SFF

They got a poll up about what folks think are the best Science Fiction and Fantasy titles.

Want to have your say? Go do it, then.

HERE's the link.

Labels: ,

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Results of the 2011 SF&F Translation Awards

I just received an email announcing the Translation Award winners. Thought I'd pass it on to you...

The Association for the Recognition of Excellence in Science Fiction & Fantasy Translation (ARESFFT) is delighted to announce the results of the 2011 Science Fiction and Fantasy Translation Awards (for works published in 2010). There are two categories: Long Form and Short Form. In each form our jury has chosen to give an honorable mention in addition to the winner.

Long Form - Honorable Mention

The Golden Age, Michal Ajvaz, translated by Andrew Oakland (Dalkey Archive Press). Original publication in Czech (2001).


Long Form - Winner

A Life on Paper: Stories, Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud, translated by Edward Gauvin (Small Beer Press). Original publication in French (1976­2005).


Short Form - Honorable Mention

“Wagtail”, Marketta Niemelä, translated by Liisa Rantalaiho (Usva International 2010 , ed. Anne Leinonen). Original publication in Finnish (Usva (The Mist), 2008).


Short Form - Winner

“Elegy for a Young Elk”, Hannu Rajaniemi, translated by Hannu Rajaniemi (Subterranean Online, Spring 2010 ). Original publication in Finnish (Portti, 2007).


In addition to the standard awards, the Board of ARESFFT presented a special award to British author and translator Brian Stableford in recognition of the excellence of his translation work.


The results were announced as part of the award ceremony at the 2011 Eurocon in Stockholm on the weekend of June 17-19 < http://eurocon2011.se/ >. The awards were presented by the convention Guests of Honor, Elizabeth Bear and Ian McDonald, while fan Guest of Honor Jukka Halme was Master of Ceremonies. Each winning author and translator will receive a cash prize of US$350 (As both author and translator Mr. Rajaniemi gets $700).

More Info HERE.

Eurocon... I want to go to Eurocon. Maybe next year... In Zagreb, Croatia!

Labels: ,

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Americans and Climate Change?

My wife and I both looked at each other, mystified looks on our faces, as we listened to this Morning Edition piece on how fewer Americans believe in Climate Change now than five years ago. Really?


Labels: , ,

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Time to Get Freaky

Yep. Today’s the day. Fort Freak (Wild Cards) hits the stores. I hope you’ll consider picking up a copy. It’s a really fun and interesting series, and I think our offering this time is quite a strong one.

Here's how the book is described on the jacket:

In 1946, an alien virus that rewrites human DNA was accidentally unleashed in the skies over New York City. It killed ninety percent of those it infected. Nine percent survived, mutated into tragically deformed creatures. And one percent gained superpowers. The Wild Cards shared-universe series, created and edited by New York Times #1 bestseller George R. R. Martin (called “the American Tolkien” by Time), is the tale of the history of the world since then—and of the heroes among the one percent. Now, in the latest Wild Cards mosaic novel, we get to know the hardbitten world of Manhattan’s Fifth Precinct—or “Fort Freak,” as cops and malefactors alike call the cop-shop where every other desk sergeant, detective, and patrol officer is more than human.

You may say, “Yeah, but… mutants and weirdos? Not really my thing.” To which I’d say, “Well, that’s good. Mutants and weirdos can be dangerous.” But they can be a lot of fun to write about.

I first came across Wild Cards when I read a few selected stories published in George RR Martin’s Dreamsongs 3: Selections from Wild Cards and More Stories from Martin's Later Years. They weren’t the type of thing I expected to be interested in, but I got sucked in right away. Part of it is the wildly imaginative details of the stories. Part is that they can be sexy and profane and push some bizarre boundaries. Part is that they deal with a surprising number of serious issues and themes. Part is that I have a perverse attraction to stories of outsiders trying to make their way in the world. A lot of Wild Cards characters are that. In a big way.

I’d only read that handful of stories when George approached me about writing for the series. I was honored, surprised, excited and terrified in equal measure. Of course, I said “Yes” before I knew what I was getting into. And then I began throwing character ideas at him. The main one that stuck was Marcus Morgan, aka Infamous Black Tongue. He’s actually a joint creation thought up with the help of my son, Sage. In Marcus we have a teenager stricken with a massive physical change right in the middle of those difficult teen years. It’s a little more extreme than puberty, I assure you that. Writing about him was partially delving into comic book hero and mutant territory. His story has all the trappings of those genres. But at it’s also very much a story about a young man dealing with being rejected from his family, finding his way on his own, trying to figure out what he can be in the world, and if the future even holds a place for him at all.

Marcus is only one character in the book, though, and that part of the beauty of it. Fort Freak features stories by Cherie Priest, Paul Cornell, Stephen Leigh, John Jos. Miller, Kevin Andrew Murphy, Victor Milan, Mary Anne Mohanraj and Ty Franck. The different stories have very different tones and focuses, but they all build on a central story spine. Before I took part I wasn’t sure how vastly different writers writing different stories from their different cubby holes could possibly end up with a cohesive narrative. Now that it’s behind me… I’m still not sure how it all happened, except to verify that George is tough, smart, effective editor. Truth be known, he taught me a thing or two about writing in the process. I’m thankful for that.

That’s all I’ll say now, except that… Just for the record, I do think this could be an entry point for someone new to the series. There are some continuing threads in it, but there are lots of new, never before seen characters on display here. And the cool thing is that if it does tickle your fancy there are twenty some earlier books already out there in the world. It’s like the reverse of starting a new epic fantasy series!

Labels: , ,

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Clarion Write-A-Thon!

Clarion's Write-A-Thon for this year is soon to begin. Wondering what that is? Find out HERE.

And HERE's one former Clarion student - and Write-A-Thon participant talking about event.


Friday, June 17, 2011

Moving. I'm Moving.

Figured I should mention it since the day of departure is actually rather near. I'm moving. If you've visited the old blog here you'll know that it's not the first time. I'm in Massachusetts now, but not too long ago I was in Fresno, CA. Before that I was in Colorado Springs, CO. Before that Shutesbury, MA. Before that Dunkeld, Scotland. Before that some variation (not necessarily in this order) of: Lake Tahoe, CA... Forneth, Scotland... Albertville, France... Basalt, CO... Hadley, MA... Coloma, CA... Portland, OR... Eugene, OR... Annapolis, MD... Edinburgh, Scotland...

Okay, I should stop. That covers about fifteen years, give or take a few small moves that don't merit mention. So, I've gotten around. No, I've not been running from the law. I'm really not that other David Anthony Durham. For most of these moves I've been married and dragging two groovy kids around behind me. I'm a writer; my wife's a knitwear designer; we both work from home and aren't too tide to any one locale. That remains the case. This time, though, the wife and groovy kids are leading the way. They're heading back to Scotland in just a few weeks. (For the record, my wife is Scottish. More about her HERE.) I've got some teaching and some events to do (Stonecoast, Clarion, ComicCon!) and then I'll be joining them.

Photo moment. This what I look like in Scotland, hanging out with Scots. Chillin.

Our new home? We'll be landing in lovely, totally picturesque Aberfeldy. You can check the Visit Aberfeldy website if you want to take a gander at the place. (JK Rowling used to have a house there. Maybe she still does. Maybe I'll stop in and say hello...)

I do know the area. I lived not far from Aberfeldy before. I even raft guided on the River Tay for a while. Great place to recreate. To take long walks. To get wet. To bluster. To write books. (Good internet, too, so I'll likely be blogging more.)

I've been back and forth to Scotland quite a few times even since moving back the US, but I haven't lived there since my first UK publication - Hannibal: Pride of Carthage. Very pleased, then, to be going back as a writer with a few books published in the UK. (Let's hope that continues.) I've already signed up to go to British FantasyCon in Brighton this September, and I've got promises from Charles Stross and Hal Duncan to drag me around Edinburgh and Glasgow, meeting literary types. Should be great fun.

I'm looking forward to it for many, many reasons.

So, when you're planning your next European vacation, consider Scotland. There's a lovely bookstore/cafe in Aberfeldy. We could meet up for a coffee...

Labels: ,

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Galleys!

Just wanted to mention that the galleys of the new book exist. Here's what they look like:I hear they're starting to show up with some bloggers. Here's hoping they like what they find inside.


Friday, June 10, 2011

The Rook

Another Fort Freak related post.

Our publisher, Tor, has put up a short story from the book. It's call "The Rook", and it's by Melinda Snodgrass, who happens to be one of my favorite people to hang out with at conferences.

You can sample her work - and the book - HERE.

By the way, Melinda has managed to set up a Wild Cards panel at the next San Diego Comic-Con. I'm very pleased to say that I'll be attending. Yay! Comic-Con is such a massive spectacle, I'm very glad to be taking part in it again. I'm not sure who will be on the panel, but it will certainly include GRRM himself!

Hey, I also just got an invite to the Random House party during the convention. Free drinks and awesome nibbles and lots of hobnobbing. Oh my. It'll be fun!

Labels: , ,

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

The First Fort Freak Review... Almost

Looks like the new Wild Cards book, Fort Freak, just got its first review over at SFRevu.

The reviewer was rather enthusiastic. Here's part of what he said:

"Told in mosaic format, with stories interweaving as an overall narrative unfolds, this book is a star-studded jam session of writers--both veterans of the series and newcomers alike--with one blockbuster result."

It's HERE if you want to take a look.

Labels: ,

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Page Proofs!

Hey, here's another bit of proofing for me. And proof that The Sacred Band really is heading your way! I just received the first pass pages of the manuscript. These are the pages formatted as they will in the book. It's the real thing!

They look like this:

I put Maya to work on proofreading them. Such a keen eye she has. Together, we've actually found a typo! That's a start. There will likely be more that we don't catch, but oh well. This will go back to Doubleday in a few days, and they'll give it the once over again.

I'm please to say that the thing reads like a book. A real book. A conclusion to a trilogy! Yahoo!

I also just heard that galleys are on the way to me. That'll be something. To hold the book in hand. (In case you're wondering, the galleys are produced before the final final text. There will be small changes made in the final edition. It's one of the reasons, actually, that galleys are cool. They give a glimpse of the almost finished book.)

So, things roll on...

Labels: ,