Science fiction and fantasy                                            


News and events

Symphony of War Declared
The second novel in the Kaddon Keys series is available in ebook.

WFC 2013
Impressions from the World Fantasy Convention held in Brighton in 2013.

Threat Of Massive Closures To Lincolnshire Libraries
Lincolnshire County Council plan to shut down two thirds of Lincolnshire libraries, and to slash mobile library services. They must be stopped.

The BFS Award Nominations, And A Hiatus
This is possibly the best kind of jury duty there is.

FantasyCon 2012
The annual convention of the BFS at Brighton was the first convention to feature a dance-off between Joe Abercrombie and Tom Pollock. It may not be the last.

The In-Between Musical
A new fantasy musical concept album launches, but will Laura Tisdall get to put it on the stage?

SFF Imprints Launching
Berkley UK will debut, and Elsewhen Press is to expand into print.

Novacon 41
The 41st Novacon convention, held in Nottingham, featured John Meaney as Guest of Honour.

Lincoln Book Festival 2011
YA authors in costume, steamy paranormal romance, and eye-popping visual appeal from the 2011 Lincoln Book Festival.

Genre for Japan
The science fiction, fantasy and horror community is rallying in support of the people of Japan hit by the devastating earthquake and tsunami and its aftermath.

An Interview With John Beachem
John riffs on zombies, trilogies and his plans for The Lorradda Stone, and the Dumbledore and Gandalf deathmatch in this interview.

British Fantasy Awards 2010
Pictures and results from the award ceremony of the British Fantasy Society.

The Heady Heights of Book Reviewing
Take a peek into the Headline offices, where bloggers were let loose on defenceless authors for the Headline Meets Online do on the 24th March.

Eastercon 2011

27th April 2011

Lauren Beukes  

Lauren Beukes and Ros Jackson

Suzanne McLeod  

Suzanne McLeod

Paul Cornell  

Paul Cornell and beard

BSFA Winners  

BSFA Award Winners

Jen McGowan and Jaine Fenn  

Jen McGowan and Jaine Fenn

Aliette De Bodard  

Aliette de Bodard

The 2011 Illustrious Eastercon was a four-day conference for lovers of science fiction and fantasy held in the Birmingham Metropole Hotel, next to the NEC. The programme features panels, readings, author signings, dances, workshops and award ceremonies. There was also an art show, a dealers' room, and a bunch more activities on offer.

Friday 22nd

Friday's programme started off in the afternoon because most people arrived in the morning. I managed to get a picture of Lauren Beukes wearing her fantastic sloth shrug, modelled on the character Sloth from Zoo City. That was at the signing for Further Conflicts, an anthology released by Newcon Press at the convention.

Saturday 23rd

On the Saturday I went to various panels and readings. Dan Abnett and Suzanne McLeod read from their latest works, which seemed to be quite a contrast in style. It's juxtapositions like that that show how diverse a convention Eastercon is. Later on Jen McGowan read some of her fantasy poetry, which is full of the drama of Greek myths and fairytales seen from unexpected perspectives. She shared a reading session with Jaine Fenn. Again Jaine Fenn's futuristic science fiction adventures were very different from McGowan's work.

The BSFA Awards ceremony took place on Saturday evening. Paul Cornell presented them with a very cheeky speech. He was very funny. Paul was growing his beard (which he shaved off the following day) in order to raise money for Shelter, and according to his blog he raised over £1600.

There are four awards. For Best Non-Fiction, Paul Kincaid won with Blogging the Hugos: Decline, which Kev McVeigh accepted on his behalf. Aliette de Bodard picked up Best Short Fiction for her story The Shipmaker, published in Interzone, and Lauren Beukes accepted the award for Best Art on behalf of Joey Hi-Fi for the cover of Zoo City. Ian McDonald won the Best Novel award for The Dervish House.
Dr Who Monster  

A Dr Who monster

Admiralty Ball  

Attendees at the Admiralty Ball

Nik Whitehead  

Nik Whitehead


The Easter Bunny

Hugo Award nominees  

Hugo Award nominees

Cheryl Morgan  

Cheryl Morgan

Sunday 24th and the Admiralty Ball

Saturday is officially costume day, although there were plenty of great outfits on display on the other days as well. This Dr Who monster on the left was just one of them. People made a great deal of effort for the Admiralty Ball in particular.

Nik Whitehead, chair of the Eastercon committee, wore a regal medieval-style gown in red. There were elaborate costumes from various eras, many of which I didn't get the chance to photograph.

The Hugo Award nominations were supposed to be announced at the ball via a live link with Norwescon in the US, but unfortunately that didn't work out as planned. However Vincent Docherty announced the nominations, and he read out the names of several people in the audience.

© Ros Jackson