More nice press and more Babel Clashing…

If you haven’t been following the blogs Jonathan Maberry and I have been posting over at Babel Clash – the Borders Sci-fi blog – then please head on over and check them out. It’s been a lot of fun, and we’ve covered quite a lot:

  • So You Want to be a Writer? / So You Want to Write Horror?
  • Where was that Stormtrooper going?
  • Characters or Carnage?
  • Seriously… You Write About Zombies?

…and more.

On another note, there has been a lot about the impact of self-publishing in the press recently. As well as last Friday’s Guardian article, I was also really pleased to get a mention in the new edition of SFX as part of an interesting piece which asks ‘are we witnessing the death of the book?’. It’s well worth looking at, for both readers and writers alike.

Scream Magazine Issue #4

Issue 4 of Scream - available now!The new issue of Scream Magazine dropped through my letterbox this morning. I know I seem to write here about every issue of Scream as soon as it’s released, but there’s a very good reason for that: I think it’s a superb mag. And it’s not just because this issue happens to have an excellent review of HATER on page 37 (thank you chaps!), it’s because Scream is a magazine put together by a team of people who clearly love the horror genre. As with previous issues, there are a wealth of quality features on show here – an interview with John Carpenter, a look at the evolution of Leatherface from the Texas Chainsaw Massacre movies, an essay focusing on some of Hammer Films’ more obscure titles, and a retrospective of 3D horror movies to name but a few. Particularly close to my heart, there’s also an article about the Bring Back Classic Horror campaign I blogged about here. Oh, and the mag also just shot up in my estimations because they almost apologised for printing a Twilight picture. How cool is that?

And on the subject of horror movies…

I’ve written before about the great and very active Facebook groupMoody’s Survivors – which was set up by Shawn Riddle. As well as working on their own anthology, raising funds to help a group member replace damaged computer equipment, and discussing the end of the world and the coming zombie apocalypse in unhealthy detail, the group also arranges interviews with authors, artists and filmmakers.

Coming soon, courtesy of group member Ryan Fleming, are interviews with Emily Booth (star of Evil Aliens, Doghouse, and well known UK horror model and presenter) and Kim Poirier (Monica in the 2004 Dawn of the Dead remake). If you have any questions for either of them, head over to the group and submit them or use the contact page on this site to send them to me and I’ll forward them to Ryan.

Emily Booth

Genre for Japan

The Genre for Japan auction finishes at midnight tonight (BST), so you’ve got less than three hours to get any final bids in. It’s been a huge success, with over £10,000 in bids already placed – a phenomenal result.

My lot – all five AUTUMN novels (signed UK hardcovers), plus an appearance in the final book – AUTUMN: AFTERMATH – plus your own illustrated short story published on www.lastoftheliving.net, currently stands at £265 – an absolutely amazing pledge.

Please take a moment to visit the auction and, if you’re able, place a bid. All proceeds will benefit the Red Cross Japan Tsunami Appeal.

Thank you.

Great places to be stranded in the event of a zombie apocalypse (part 1)

I was laid up most of last week, so I didn’t get to see much of St Patrick’s Day. I hope all my Irish friends and readers had a great day, and I also hope they’ll respectfully avoid mentioning yesterday’s rugby match.

You might remember a short while back I did a food-based interview with Jeremy Sus of Chicago Examiner.com when we talked, amongst other things, about the impact a zombie apocalypse might have on our eating habits. Jeremy posted a link on my Facebook page this week about beer, and that got me thinking back to my recent visit to Dublin.

The Guinness StorehouseBefore the Sunday sessions began at Phoenix Con, my wife Lisa and I snuck off for a little sightseeing. Inevitably we ended up at the Guinness Storehouse – home of one of the most famous, and undoubtably one of the greatest beers ever created. The tour takes you up through several floors of exhibits describing the history and production of Guinness, before culminating in a complimentary pint in the seventh floor Gravity Bar. And the Gravity Bar, I remember thinking at the time, would be a damn fine place to find yourself stuck when the dead start to rise.

The Gravity Bar at the Guinness StorehouseWhere else are you going to get a). a virtually unobstructed, panoramic view of the chaos unfolding across Dublin, b). the security of being seven floors and a hundred feet above street level, and c). the luxury of a huge bar serving almost nothing but perfect pints of Guinness? Okay, so technically it wouldn’t be the most sensible place to hide (from memory there’s only one way in and out if the lifts are out of action – you’ll have to try and get down the same way the living dead are fighting their way up), but with all that Guinness on tap, who’d give a damn?!

You wouldn’t last long, and you’re out of luck if you don’t like Guinness, but I challenge you to find a better place to be stranded in the event of a zombie apocalypse!

The Mother Load

I’m sure plenty of you are aware of James Melzer. He’s the evil genius behind the Unleashed podcast, and the author of ESCAPE – the first book in a new trilogy of zombie novels coming later this year from Permuted Press and Pocket Books.

The Mother Load - a free eBook only available with pre-orders of James Melzer's 'Escape'James got in touch with me a while back and invited me to be a part of a unique pre-order campaign for ESCAPE, and I was happy to oblige. Starting from tomorrow and running through to Escape’s release in December, everyone who pre-orders the book can get their hands on THE MOTHERLOAD a free eBook featuring never before published stories from myself (my contribution is ‘The Deal’ – a lovely little tale of perversion and greed), S G Brown, Mur Lafferty, Jeremy C Shipp, Wayne Simmons, and Matt Wallace.

To get the free eBook, simply order Escape from one of the following retailers – Amazon (Print Edition), Amazon (Kindle Edition), Amazon UKAmazon CanadaBorders.com, and Indigo Canada – and email a copy of your receipt to EscapeNovel@Gmail.com.

Dead Island trailer

In no way am I an avid gamer – I love my Xbox, but a). playing on it is a luxury I only allow myself at the end of the day when all my work is done (i.e. not often), and b). I refuse to pay £40 – £50 for a brand new release so I wait for cut-price reissues of games after everyone else has finished playing them!

That said, this game trailer which is all over the Internet today, is completely stunning. If the game is even half as good, I’ll be there in a flash.

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Scream Magazine Issue #3 – out now

If it seems as if I’m plugging SCREAM every issue, that’s because I am! It’s a great magazine, and worthy of the support. If you’re after flashy graphics, bog-standard news and reviews, and endless glossy pages full of photographs of vapid celebrities, then you’re probably better off looking elsewhere. But if you’re a real fan of the genre – past, present and future –  then you’ll love SCREAM.

This month – an in-depth EVIL DEAD retrospective, a wealth of A SERBIAN FILM coverage (including a fascinating list of all 49 BBFC cuts), and much more.

Interview with ‘Moody’s Survivors’

Click here to join the new Facebook group – MOODY’S SURVIVORS – SPREAD THE INFECTION – which has become a hive of zombie- and book-related activity over the last couple of weeks.

The admins have just posted the results of a question and answer session I did with group members, so please head over and join up! (Thanks to Lee Hartnup, by the way, for the flattering photo!).