jen_qoe: (me)
Ah, Fantasycon, how do I love thee.  Fantasycon was my first con, and thus the con that raised wee!Jen! in the genre.  It’s also the convention that introduced me to a wild and spendid bunch of utter nutters folks who have become my extended family and like this year’s GoH Jo Fletcher (and many others) are frequently heard to say, I wouldn’t be where I am now without Fantasycon and the BFS.  So Fantasycon has always been my home con.  There’s been ups and downs over the years, great venues, seriously crappy venues, shenanigans and hijinx aplenty, but after a rather excellent time in York last year, I was looking forward to more of the same. In that I was not disappointed as this year by far exceeded it.

So the hotel – from an accommodation standpoint, the De Vere Orchard is one of the better Fcon hotels.  Plentiful free parking, comfy chairs and actual stable free wifi y’all! (What? This is a vital part of any con!)  And yes, many hated the limited menu the hotel decided to shove in the restaurant especially for us, but hey, it was cheap and suited my (admittedly unsophisticated) palate perfectly so I had no problem with it.  Everything with cheese? So in!  (The epically slow service was a whole ‘nother thing though.)

The con itself had an excellent vibe to it – with tons of new people, a generally relaxed and friendly feel and plenty of light spacious rooms to hang about in between things.  And oh so many panels.  In an alternate universe, where hive mind clone systems have been invented, Jen #1 did alllll the panels, Jen #2 did allll the other panels, Jen #3 scooped up the random panels, launches and miscellanea missed by #1 and #2, Jen #4 lurked in the readings and hung around gossiping all day before storming the karaoke and disco, while Jen #5 got on the tram to Nottingham and hasn’t been seen since. At some point later the multi Jen collective merged brains and the full con experience was had by all.

Alas, no hive mind clone club in this universe, so while many panels were seen, many panels were not and conversations were fleeting things that happened as people passed on the way to other stuff.  But the people I did get to see, albeit briefly, were fantastic. (Cheers folks! Big hugs!)  Shout outs to Adrian, Ruth, Alasdair, Marguerite, Pete, Jan, Debs, Mike, Paul, Marie, Steve, Jo, Amanda, Simon, other Simon, other other Simon, Cate, Liz, Gary, Karen, Heidi, Adele, Mr Fox and all those peeps whose names are currently on the edge of m’wossname but who also increased the general loveliness of the con.

The editing panel I was on went well (despite the fact I was on it!).  James Barclay is a stunning moderator, and m’fellow panellists – Pete Crowther, Nicola Budd and Simon Marshall Jones – were both erudite and excellent! (I said not much, and possibly answered questions that hadn’t even been asked. Er. Whoops? Mooooving on.)  The other panels were a wonderfully varied selection including the fun and very educational writing in a franchise panel, the excellent present and future of horror panel, the equally excellent epic fantasy panel, the panel interupptus that was the marketing panel (cut short by fire alarm and ensuing congregation in the car park), and the fascinating future of publishing panel (phone fic, yo!).  The Jo Fletcher interview was also brilliant.  (Jo F. = actual goddess. No question.)

We had to leave early Sunday so missed the last day of fun, but awards can be found here – and are they not a fantastic bunch of winners?   Alchemy picked up Best Collection for Adrian Cole’s Nick Nightmare Investigates (co-published with Airgedlámh Publications), Fox Spirit picked up Best Independent Press, and with Holdfast and Women Destroy SF among the other winners, happy Jen is very happy.  :-)

Massive kudos to the redcoats who kept things running smoothly and huge thanks to Lee and the committee for organising such an amazing con. I had a blast!  (Now go get some sleep, peeps!)

And so onto next year… early news in says that next year Fantasycon will be in Scarborough (23rd – 25th September), organised by Alex Davis of Edge Lit fame, with the lovely Adam Nevill as first guest – so naturally I’ve already booked. (Well, it has to be done!)  Should be fun, so get yourselves signed up already!

jen_qoe: (urban mythic)
Don't mind me, I'll just be giggling madly in the corner here...  So, this morning the ever lovely Stephen Theaker posted the BF Awards shortlist for this year.... on the BFS website here, in full.

This is such a fantastic list with some fab people on it (Lightspeed's Women Destroy SF! Jen Williams! Spectral's Book of Horror! Mark West! Holdfast! Lightspeed!) so huuuuuge congrats to all the nominees....

The absolute highlight though is in Best Anthology where Urban Mythic 2 scored a nomination!  To say Jan and I are insanely pleased would be an understatement of epic proportions.  We are INSANELY pleased!

And! Wicked Women copped a sorta mention too as the awesome Gaie Sebold got a Best Short Story nom for 'A Change of Heart' which appeared in it.  Babylon Steel stories for the win!

Did I mention Jan and I are insanely pleased? There is happy dancing.

And! Not only that!  But my beloved Team Alchemy and Team Skulk picked up all manner of noms, namely -

Best artist -
Ben Baldwin - who did the gorgeous cover for Urban Mythic 1
Les Edwards - who did the equally gorgeous cover for Urban Mythic 2 as well as covers for other Alchemy titles
Sarah Anne Langton - who did the wonderfully gorgeous cover for Wicked Women as well as covers for other Fox Spirit titles
Daniele Serra - who has done lovely covers for both Alchemy and Fox Spirit

Best collection -
Nick Nightmare Investigates, Adrian Cole (The Alchemy Press and Airgedlámh Publications)

Best fantasy novel (the Robert Holdstock Award) -
Breed, KT Davies (Fox Spirit Books)

Best horror novel (the August Derleth Award) -
The Unquiet House, Alison Littlewood (Jo Fletcher Books)  - Who also had a story in Urban Mythic 1.  :-)

Best independent press -
The Alchemy Press (Peter Coleborn)
Fox Spirit Books (Adele Wearing)

Best non-fiction -
Touchstones: Essays on the Fantastic, John Howard (The Alchemy Press)

The winners will be announced at the awards ceremony on Sunday, 25 October 2015, at FantasyCon 2015 in Nottingham, and, obvs, Alchemy and Fox Spirit will be winning alllll the awards.  And getting a joint win in Best Inde Press, just cos.  ;-)
jen_qoe: (pirate girl)
Oh what news we have for you my lovelies!

First, Urban Mythic #1 was kinda sorta nominated in the British Fantasy Awards.  Oh yes! Our very own Adrian Tchaikovsky made the Best Short Fiction short list with his story 'Family Business'.  Massive congrats to Adrian!

Our publisher overlords at Alchemy Press also made the short list for Best Small Press and Best Non Fiction (with Doors to Elsewhere by Mike Barrett); and with our loyal Fox Spirit editor hats on, we're also rather pleased that Fox Spirit Books also made the shortlists in Best Small Press, and Best Anthology (with Tales of Eve edited by Mhairi Simpson).  So epic glee all round!  (Not least because so many women made the BFA short lists this year as well. Hurrah!)

Now! Urban Mythic #2 news!
Yes, my darlings, we have contents!  In alphabetical order, with proper order to follow anon, here be our fabulous people...

Sarah Ash – La Vouivre
James Brogden – Avatising
Carl Barker – The West Dulwich Horror
Andrew Coulthard – Paradise Walk
K T Davies – For the Memory of Jane
Pauline E Dungate – Trapped in the Web
Chico Kidd – Blood*uckers
Tanith Lee – The Mermaid
Christine Morgan – High School Mythical:Asgard
Lou Morgan – Death and the Weaver
Marion Pitman – The Cupboard of Winds
Adrian Tchaikovsky – Where the Brass Band Plays

And! There will be a cover by Les Edwards - to be revealed at a later date.

Aaaaaalllll the awesome!
jen_qoe: (pirate girl)
Am back from that there Fantasycon (post later on that!), so for now, here be the 2012 BFS award winners!

Main Jury Awards: 
Jury: James Barclay, Hal Duncan, Maura McHugh, Esther Sherman, and Damien G. Walter.

Best Novel: 
August Derleth Award/Best Horror - The Ritual by Adam Nevill
Robert Holdstock Award/Best Fantasy -  Among Others by Jo Walton

Best Novella: 
Gorel and the Pot Bellied God by Lavie Tidhar

Best Short Fiction: 
The Coffin-Maker’s Daughter by Angela Slatter

Best Anthology: 
The Weird, ed. Jeff and Ann Vandermeer

Best Collection:
Everyone’s Just So So Special by Robert Shearman

Best Screenplay: 
Midnight in Paris by Woody Allen

Best Magazine/Periodical:
Black Static, ed. Andy Cox

Best Comic/Graphic Novel:
Locke and Key by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez

Then the Special Juried Awards (which a lot of blogs keep forgetting to mention...and, yes, I'm slightly biased because I was on one of the juries for them, so don't forget that they are actual proper BFS awards as well, right? All right then! x )

The BFS/PS Publishing Best Independent Press Award: Chomu Press
(Jury: Sandy Auden, Peter Crowther, Nicholas Royle, Peter Tennant & Darren Turpin)

BFS Best Artist Award: Daniele Serra
(Jury: Guy Adams, Anne Sudworth, Christopher Teague)

BFS Best Non-Fiction Award: Supergods: Our World in the Age of the Super Hero by Grant Morrison
(Jury: Djibril al-Ayad, Roz Kaveney & Adam Roberts)

BFS/Sydney J. Bounds Best Newcomer Award: Kameron Hurley
(Jury: Adele Wearing, Jenny Barber, Lou Morgan)

BFS/Karl Edward Wagner Special Award: Peter & Nicky Crowther
(Jury: BFS & Fantasycon committees)
jen_qoe: (akima_san Croft)
So the BFS Awards nominations are now open for business here:

You get three choices per category (aarrrrrgh, the torment!) and the top four choices with the most votes go through to the judging panels for final wossnames.

The new online voting form thingy is still a bit buggy so to ease your pain -

1) when you've entered a couple of choices, nip down to the bottom of the page and hit the 'resume later' button to save your work. Then you can pop up and add a couple more choices, then nip down and hit resume to save it. (Far less frustrating than doing the whole thing, hitting submit, getting an error message, doing the whole thing from scratch all over again, rinse and repeat until the laptop gets thrown out of the window...)

And 2) apparently there's an IP blocker on it somewhere, so if you're being helpful and providing links to some of the very excellent online magazines and stories and wotnot that really should be getting nominated... don't put the 'http://www' bit of the address in as this apparently makes the web page panic and then it's error messages and losing your noms... (here speaks the voice of experience who filled out the form many many times this morning...)

If you're short of inspiration, there's some cool picks on the Best of 2011 post I did a while back, not that I'm at all biased...

So if you're a BFS member, are attending Fantasycon 2012 or attended Fcon 2011 - hop on over to and share your love of the genre...

jen_qoe: (bfs)
So then, the BFS awards shortlist has now been published here. Which is nice. Bit of an odd mix this year and first impressions are: um, hello, can we have some more women on the shortlist sometime soon? Ta. Also, good grief, look at all that horror. Wasn't there some fantasy and SF on the long list? I'm sure there was somewhere. (Alas, can not find a link to it to check as the only link I could find led to the longlist voting form - which has, of course, been taken down...)

::headdesks:: at the amount of horror. Not that there's anything wrong with horror but this being the British *Fantasy* Society you'd think there'd be enough members voting for fantasy stuff to get at least one or two more things up there...

Whinging aside - very pleased to see that Strange Horizons made the shortlist in Best Magazine. And m'friend Jan E. has made it to the Best Short Story shortlist (she was stunned and amazed and is currently incoherent!)

So women visibility count - (which I'm fairly certain Juliet McKenna has also mentioned somewhere...)

Best Novel: 5 noms, Sam Stone (for Demon Dance) is the only female author
Best Novella: 5 noms, no women
Best Short Story: 5 noms, 2 female authors (Jan Edwards with Otterburn, Sam Stone with Fool's Gold)
Best Collection: 5 noms, no women
Best Anthology: 5 noms, 1 women co-editor (Allyson Bird with Never Again)
Best Non-Fiction: 5 noms, no women
Best Artist: 5 noms, no women
Best Small Press: 5 noms, no female editors/publishers
Best Magazine: 5 noms, 1 female editor! (Susan Marie Groppi for Strange Horizons. Woohoo!)
Best Graphic Novel: 5 noms, no women as primary creators

::headdesks again::

Having said that, though, the list for Best Newcomer is happily nice and diverse. Without naming names, as we apparently don't do that... noms from the BFS/Fcon membership = 14 authors. Of which, 7 are female! (I swear I'm not making this up!) We also have an interesting balance between fantasy, SF & horror (F: 8, SF: 2, H: 4) covering both small press (2) and big press (12), with both adult (10) & YA (4) books. 4 authors are PoC. Now m'fellow judges just have to finish reading them all... ;-P

(For comparison, last year there were 5 noms for Best Newcomer, of which: 3 female authors/2 male authors; 2 fantasy, 2 SF, 1 horror; 4 big press, 1 small press; all adult; 1 PoC)
jen_qoe: (Default)
As someone on the BFS forum was asking - if you're interesting in reading some of the short stories on the awards longlist, various web ones can be found here:

‘A Serpent In The Gears’ – Margaret Ronald – Beneath Ceaseless Skies
‘After The Dragon’ – Sarah Monette – Fantasy Magazine
‘All the Kings Monsters’ – Megan Arkenberg – Clarkesworld Magazine
'Camelot' - Patrick Samphire - Interzone #230
‘Distant Deeps Or Skies’
– Silvia Moreno-Garcia – Expanded Horizons
‘First Born’ – Megan Arkenberg – The Lorelei Signal
‘Last Of The Monsters’ – Emil Skaftun – Strange Horizons
‘Otterburn’ – Jan Edwards – Estronomicon
‘Six Skills Of Madam Lumiere, The’ – Marissa Lingen – Beneath Ceaseless Skies
‘Sunlight’ – Kelly Dwyer – Abyss & Apex
‘Things, The’ – Peter Watts – Clarkesworld
‘Undead Philosophy 101’ – Stephanie Burgis – December Lights
‘Unpopular Opinion Of Reverend Tobias Thackery, The’ – Adam Christopher – Hub Magazine
'Silent Night' - Stuart Young - Estronomicon
jen_qoe: (Default)
For those who are curious, the BFS awards longlist has now been published here - at quick glance, not a bad list at all. ;-)

In other news, apparently I'm on the judging panel for Best Newcomer again. (ooh-er!) I'm joined by the fabulous Lou Morgan and the equally fabulous Jenny Davies of Wondrous Reads.

Should be fun!
jen_qoe: (bfs)

So, you know how I have, occasionally, been known to bitch rant mutter about the lack of female presence in the BFS awards and be generally pessimistic about the Best Newcomer ever going to someone not of the cis-gendered male horror writer persuasion...

Well, um, about that...

Have very recently found out, I'm on the judging panel for the 2010 BFS Sydney J. Bounds Best Newcomer award. (For authors first published in 2009.)

How cool is that?! (And what were they thinking? :-P )

We have five fantastic authors to consider (though not much time to do it in, all told. Luckily I'm already very familiar with the works of 4 of the 5,) and the award will be announced at Fantasycon on 17th-19th September. (Think the awards banquet is on the Saturday evening but can't remember seeing anything definite to confirm that...)

The lucky winner gets a delightful awards statue thingy plus £100 from the Sydney J Bounds estate.

And that, my little possums, is all I can tell you about that... :-D

Except... I solemnly swear not to do evil things with my new found (and temporary) power. 

Also... tee hee!   :-D
jen_qoe: (jenny quantum)
And so, more awards. 
The David Gemmell Legend (and bonus added extra!) awards were announced at the weekend after their swanky do at the Magic Circle (which, alas, I could not go to. ::cries::  Missed Mr Barclay doing whatever awesome piece of drama-speech he did do.  ::cries again::)

So, here's who won, in case you missed it elsewhere:  (Thanks to Mark Yon, via Facebook)

Ravensheart Award: Best Served Cold – Didier Graffet, Dave Senior and Laura Brett.
For the shortlist poll there were votes from 64 different countries, with the top voters being from the USA and the UK.

(Cool!  That was a funky cover!)

Morningstar Award: The Cardinal’s Blades by Pierre Pevel.
For the shortlist poll there were votes from 34 different countries, with the top voters being from the USA France and the UK.

(Have not read that.)

Legend Award: Empire by Graham McNeill.
For the shortlist poll there were votes from 91 different countries, with the top voters being from the USA, the UK, France and Canada.

(Have not read that either.  Shall look it out.  Apparently he's a big deal in Warhammer/Black Library type circles?)

And the lovely Mr Yon reckons there were over 15,500 votes made in total, which is about twice as much as last year.  Go them!  :-)

Of course, looking at the list of winners, am now desperately trying to resist the urge to start singing "men, men, men, men, manly men, men, men..."  (Shut up, I'm not obsessed!)

jen_qoe: (layla miller)
Aaaaaaand the BFS Awards Shortlist is now up here

(Looks at list.  Looks at shortage of females.  Again.  ::Headdesk:: )

So huge congrats to Sam Stone, Sarah Pinborough, Nina Allen, Selina Lock, Marie O'Regan & Holly Stacey for getting so far!  :-)

Still hoping that there's some female presence on the Wagner Special Award & Bounds Best Newcomer Award.   But we won't know that 'til September.   (Shall faint in shock if there is, but you never know your luck...)

(Goes back to pondering all things I'd like to do had  I a) the skill and the time, and b) knew enough people who also had the skill and the time....) 
jen_qoe: (jenny quantum)
Wahey!  The longlist for the BFS Awards is out and ready for first round voting.  And it's very long.  Also filled with goodness...  So if you're a BFS and/or Fantasycon member, go vote so we can get some decent stuff on the shortlist this year.  (and, thusly, some decent stuff winning!  :-)  )

Plus, Fantasy Magazine, Clarkesworld, Strange Horizons & Expanded Horizons got mentions in the Best Mag and Best Short Story categories.... which is nice.  :-)

Seriously, if you're eligible to, go vote...  :-)

jen_qoe: (Default)
So, the BFS have just released the final shortlist for the BF Awards... this year, for the first time, members of the BFS and Fantasycon get to vote on the final stage shortlist to get to the winners, with the awards to be given out at Fantasycon on the night of Saturday 19th September...

There's a hell of a lot of categories this year, so you're best off checking the link above to see who's up for what... now, it may be me, but it does seem rather heavily slanted to the horror side... Shame, cos the long list had plenty of great fantasy stuff on it...

Also, congrats to Sarah Pinborough and Allyson Bird for making it as the only women on a male dominated list... Oh, there's also Selina Lock and Tori Amos in the comic category, so that's cool! :->

And, seriously, how did Lost not make the TV short list? That's just shocking!


jen_qoe: (Default)

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