by Sandy Auden
A quick round up of internet snippets -- listen to an interview with Neil Gaiman and Stephen Jones
about the upcoming Coraline movie and The Visual Companion book; the
David Gemmell Award has been launched; Author Andy Remic is giving away free electronic copies
of his books Spiral and War Machine; win a Sony e-Reader with Orion books but be
quick; Watchmen movie tie-in publications are on the way from Titan Books; Dean Koontz's
Frankenstein: Prodigal Son graphic novel launches a new website; and Indy publisher AccentUK are
previewing free pages of their World's Fastest Man comic on their website.
The new Coraline movie is shaping up to be the most exciting children's cinema release of 2009 and, since it's based on the excellent novel by Neil Gaiman, you can be sure that it'll appeal to adults as well as kids.
The interview starts playing automatically when you visit the page and from there you can grab HTML code to play the show anywhere.
David Gemmell Legend Award Open For Voting
A new Fantasy Award to commemorate David Gemmell's considerable contributions to the genre has been launched by friends of the author in the UK.
Chairing the David Gemmell Legend Award is author Stan Nicholls. "When David died in July 2006, a number of his friends and colleagues were keen to establish some kind of lasting memorial to him," Nicholls said. "It was David Lee Stone who came up with the idea of an award in Dave's name. That seemed a perfect way of commemorating the man and his work.
"It also fulfilled a perceived need. Because the strange thing is that, despite fantasy literature being a very commercially successful genre, it doesn't have what you might call a support system surrounding it, particularly here in the UK. By that I mean any sort of properly organised fandom, and certainly no award. This seemed a great opportunity to honour both David and fantasy, and to give the category a rallying point and some much needed kudos."
Setting up a brand new Award takes time and lots of hard work. Fantasy author Deborah Miller joined the Gemmell Award group in 2007 and proved to be the driving force in getting the Award up and running.
The Award obtained the backing and approval of the Gemmell family and then, "we approached all the leading publishing houses and asked them to submit a list of their titles they thought worthy," continued Nicholls. "This longlist was published on the award website, and the public was invited to add any further titles they considered eligible. Then, on 26th December 2008, voting on the longlist was opened. When this closes on 31st March 2009, the top five novels with the most votes will form the shortlist, which is going to be announced during the first week of April.
This is an award that the fans alone will be voting on, there aren't any panels of experts deliberating over the titles this time. "It seemed to us that the people best placed to decide who deserves this award are the readers; and we're sure it's what David himself would have approved of. I'm glad to say that our faith has been rewarded -- to date, 4000 people have voted.
"And those who thought only famous writers would get the votes, or that the voting would be rigged in some way, have been proved wrong. There are some real surprises among the leading contenders so far, and only one attempt has been made to stuff the ballot, which was immediately detected; we have state of the art mechanisms in place to prevent false votes."
And the winner is revealed on Friday June 19th at the headquarters of The Magic Circle in London. Nicholls concludes: "This is an opportunity to respect the memory of a superlative fantasy writer, and to establish what we hope will be the world's leading prize in the genre."
Andy Remic Audio Giveaways
"Recording Spiral and War Machine was both a joy and a nightmare. A joy because the process itself is quite simple, creatively, and the really hard work -- that of writing the damn book -- is already done.
"I found the technical aspects a pain, getting levels right and such forth; I released a demo, mastered way too high, and nearly blew up a few people's expensive speakers. Podiobooks.com were a big help in getting the stuff just right. The worst bit, however, was my own voice... being a poor, outcast, underdog author, I couldn't afford Brad Pitt, Keanu Reeves and Angelina Jolie to do the voices, so I had to grin and do them myself -- and man, do I hate my own voice..."
Win a Sony eReader with Orion Publishers
You'll have to be quick but if you complete the short survey over at Orion publisher's website by Monday February 2 2009, you'll go into a draw to win a Sony eReader or £200 worth of Orion publications of your choice. Plus the 20 runners-up will each win a prize pack of selected January new books.
This survey will take only 5-10 minutes, so click on over…
Watchmen Fever is Coming
February 10, 2009 sees the release of the Watchmen film companion; the film art book and the portraits volume.
Watchmen: The Film Companion takes viewers inside the movie with exclusive cast and crew interviews and more than 200 color photographs.
Watchmen: The Art of the Film explores the evolution of the movie's look, revealing scores of production designs, set photos, costume sketches, original storyboards and other pieces of conceptual art.
And Watchmen: Portraits is a deluxe hardback volume comprising a stunning collection of photographs by world-renowned portrait photographer, Clay Enos. On set throughout production as the movie's official photographer, Enos made time to work on this very special project: a collection of black-and-white portraits of individuals working on the production, from the lead heroes to supporting characters, the crew who put the film together and even extras in the crowd.
Ideal if you just can't wait till the movie hits the cinema screens.
Dean Koontz's Frankenstein Website Launches
The graphic novel of Dean Koontz's bestselling tale of Frankenstein is released on February 2, 2009. Adapted by comic book writer Chuck Dixon and featuring illustrations by artist Brett Booth the Prodigal Son story was originally released in a five-issue single comic format but now the chilling first arc of the comic books comes together in a hardbound graphic novel edition.
In the nineteenth century, Dr. Victor Frankenstein brought his notorious creation to life, but a horrible turn of events forced him to abandon it and slip away from the public eye. Two centuries later, a serial killer is on the loose in New Orleans, gruesomely salvaging body parts from each of his victims, as if trying to assemble a perfect human being…
Supporting the new graphic novel is a new website where you can find all the latest news and an audio introduction from Deucalion himself, one-time 'monster' and Frankenstein's first attempt to build a perfect human.
Whatever Happened to the World's Fastest Man?
Indie comic publisher AccentUK have launched a preview of their newest comic series, Whatever Happened To The World's Fastest Man?
Part of their new Blessed/Cursed imprint, this is the sobering tale of a normal person with an extra-ordinary ability. Here are the realities of being super-human and the story explores the consequences one gifted man has to face. For Bobby Doyle, the World's Fastest Man, a crazed bomber has given him the logistics problem of a lifetime…
Sandy Auden is currently working as an enthusiastic interviewer/reviewer for SFX magazine; a tireless news hound for Starburst magazine; and a diligent interviewer/reviewer for Interzone magazine and SF Site. She spends her spare time lying down with a cold flannel on her forehead. For background information, visit www.sandyauden.co.uk.
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