SFSF Awards 2016

Hello one and all, and welcome to the inaugural edition of the hopefully annual SFSF Awards, in which we tip a pint glass to some of the very best Science Fiction, Fantasy, Horror, and WTF? (that one’s for you, Angry Robot) we encountered during 2016. No juries were hung, no votes were rigged, and electoral colleges and referendums were punted very firmly off the edge of the world. Most importantly, you can stand and applaud whenever you feel like it. Nobody’s judging you here.

(Um… except us. But in a good way.)

Best Anthology

Monstrous Little Voices – ed. David Thomas Moore (Rebellion)
Fight Like a Girl – ed. Joanne Hall & Roz Clarke (Grimbold Books)
African Monsters – ed. Jo Thomas & Margret Helgadottir (Fox Spirit Books)

How can you choose between these three? Imaginative spinnings of Shakespearian characters into a web of diverse perils; kick-ass stories of physically and mentally tough women crossing all genres; a sumptuously designed volume of African-centric monster stories that dares you not to enjoy it. How do you choose?

If you’re like us, then you don’t. They all win. And more power to them.

Best Collection

Signs in the Moonlight – David Tallerman (Digital SF)
Shadow Histories of the River Kingdom – Juliet E McKenna (Wizard’s Tower Press)

Best Novella

Every Heart a Doorway – Seanan Maguire (Tor)
Patchwerk – David Tallerman (Tor)
Winter – Dan Grace (Unsung Stories)

Best Novel (The Skadi Award)

Sherlock Holmes & The Servants of Darkness – Paul Kane (Rebellion)
Chasing Embers – James Bennett (Orbit)
Revenger – Alastair Reynolds (Gollancz)
13 Minutes – Sarah Pinborough (Gollancz)
False Hearts – Laura Lam (Macmillan)
A Close and Common Orbit – Becky Chambers (Hodder)

The Mycroft Award for Best Completed Series

The Copper Cat trilogy – Jen Williams (Hodder)
The Age of Darkness – Stephen Aryan (Orbit)

Congratulations, one and all! We hope to see you next year! 🙂

 

New Event – Mini SFSF 26/4/16 – Stephen Aryan

We’re rather chuffed and bouncy today – not least because it’s Friday, but also because we can tell you about the next event!

Bloodmage - The Age of Darkness 2 (Paperback)On Tuesday 26th April, SFSF is co-hosting a signing and launch event for Stephen Aryan‘s new epic fantasy novel Bloodmage at Waterstones, Orchard Square, Sheffield. Bloodmage is the follow-up to last year’s rather awesome Battlemage, from Orbit Books, and we’ll have copies of both books available for sale and signing on the night.

Here’s the book blurb:
The people of Perizzi have survived the battlemage war, but their future is looking darker than ever…BYRNE is a member of the Watch, investigating a series of murders in which the corpse was drained entirely of life. FRAY’s expertise with magic is needed to catch the killer, but working with the Watch destroyed his father, years before. CHOSS is a champion fighter, trying to diffuse a war in the underworld that threatens to turn the streets red with rivers of blood. KATJA is a spy from a foreign land, attempting to prevent a massacre that will topple two dynasties and destroy the fragile peace in the city for ever. Watchmen and spies, assassins and criminals will clash on the streets in this magic-fuelled adventure from the author of Battlemage.

You can see the event page and location details at the Waterstones site, and we’ll be adding on an Eventbrite link very shortly.

Naturally, it wouldn’t be a SFSF without at least a few little giveaways, but you’ll have to be there on the night to see what we got… 🙂

SFSF Social #5 – 20th February 2016

Is it 2016 already? Good grief, the future’s nearly passed!

SFSF Social returns for the first event of the new year on Saturday 20th February, at 4pm, for another afternoon of readings, talks, Q&As, and a couple of freebies. We’re at Eten Cafe on York Street in Sheffield City Centre, and this time our guests will be:

David Tallerman.

Author of the Easie Damasco trilogy, which was released through Angry Robot Books, and also of Patchwerk, the latest release from Tor’s exciting novella imprint. David has also had stories published in Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Digital Science Fiction, Pseudopod, Interzone, Clarkesworld, Lightspeed, and the anthology Sharkpunk! amongst many others.

 

 

Adele Wearing.

Adele is the “Auntie Fox” of Fox Spirit Books, the Leicester-based, British Fantasy Award-winning, independent publisher of fine genre fiction such as 25 Ways To Kill a Werewolf (Jo Thomas), White Rabbit (KA Laity), and the anthologies Girl At The End of the World and Tales of the Nun & Dragon. Fox Spirit Books have also published the highly acclaimed European Monsters and African Monsters collections, edited by Jo Thomas and Margrét Helgadóttir.

 

Once again, we look forward to seeing you all there!

SFSF Social 4 – David Barnett & Ask The Agent with Amanda Rutter

It’s time to announce the guests for our fourth Social of the year – and the last until 2016, so do come join us at Eten Cafe on Saturday October 17th, as part of Sheffield’s Off The Shelf Festival, when we shall have:

David Barnett and Amanda Rutter.

Book your places now at this here linky!

dave-reading

David Barnett

David Barnett is an award-winning journalist and author based in West Yorkshire. He was born in Wigan, Lancashire, in 1970 and has worked in regional newspapers since 1989. He is the author of the Gideon Smith alternate history series from Tor Books, beginning in 2013 with Gideon Smith and the Mechanical Girl. David is also the author of Hinterland (2005, reprinted 2008), Angelglass (2007) and The Janus House and Other Two-Faced Tales (2009), all published by Immanion Press, as well as popCULT!, published in 2011 from Pendragon Press. His work has been translated into Czech, Russian and German. He is represented by the literary agent John Jarrold. His latest novel, Gideon Smith and the Mask of the Ripper, will be released by Tor (US) and Snowbooks (UK) in October 2015.

After training and working as an accountant for over a decade, Amanda Rutter became an editor with Angry Robot, helping to sign books and authors for the Strange Chemistry imprint. Since leaving Angry Robot, she has been a freelance editor, through her own company AR Editorial Solutions, BubbleCow and Wise Ink. She also finds time to write blog posts for Tor.com. In her free time, she is a yarn fiend, knitting and crocheting a storm. Amanda is an associate agent at the Red Sofa Literary Agency, and will be hosting an Ask The Agent session at the Social.

Now, this is an exciting opportunity to get some inside info on the publishing industry, especially for aspiring authors out there, and Amanda has excellent credentials. What we’d like to do, to make the session run smoothly, is ask that questions are submitted in advance as much as possible. You can do this in one of two ways: either by filling out the contact form here on this post (see below) or by emailing AskAmanda [at] kinsmeet.co.uk. All questions received will be forwarded on to Amanda. If you can’t attend the Social in person, we’ll post up answers to your question after the event.

 

Oh, and as ever, there will be books to be won in our slightly legendary raffle! (This time, I’m afraid, there will be a small charge of £1 for raffle entry to help cover room costs, but the Social itself is still free to all.)

And, lastly, a reminder – the 4th York Pubmeet takes place on Saturday September 19th, with guests Alex Davis and Marie O’Regan. All details are on this linky thingy – we hope to see you there!

SFSF Social #3 – 27th June 2015

We’re back in the upstairs room at the excellent Eten Cafe on Saturday 27th June from 4pm, and we’re proud to announce that once again we will have readings and Q&A sessions with two brilliant authors!

Jacey Bedford

Jacey Bedford is a British writer with a three book deal from DAW. Empire of Dust, a Psi-tech novel came out in 2014. Crossways, its sequel, follows in August 2015 and Winterwood, a historical fantasy, in February 2016. Her short stories have been published on both sides of the Atlantic in anthologies and magazines. She lives on the edge of the Pennine Hills, south of Huddersfield, with her songwriter husband and a long-haired, black German Shepherd (a dog not an actual shepherd from Germany). She used to have children, now she has adults. She’s been a librarian, a postmistress, a rag-doll maker and a folk singer with the vocal harmony trio, Artisan. Her claim to fame is that she once sang live on BBC Radio 4 accompanied by the Doctor (Who?) playing spoons. www.jaceybedford.co.uk

Paul Kane

Paul Kane is the award-winning, bestselling author and editor of over fifty books – including the Arrowhead trilogy (gathered together in the sellout Hooded Man omnibus, revolving around a post-apocalyptic version of Robin Hood), The Butterfly Man and Other Stories, Hellbound Hearts and The Mammoth Book of Body Horror. His non-fiction books include The Hellraiser Films and Their Legacy and Voices in the Dark, and his genre journalism has appeared in the likes of SFX, Rue Morgue and DeathRay. He has been a Guest at Alt.Fiction five times, was a Guest at the first SFX Weekender, at Thought Bubble in 2011, Derbyshire Literary Festival and Off the Shelf in 2012, Monster Mash and Event Horizon in 2013, and Edge-Lit in 2014, as well as being a panellist at FantasyCon and the World Fantasy Convention. His work has been optioned and adapted for the big and small screen, including for network US television, plus his latest novels are Lunar (set to be turned into a feature film) and the Y.A. story The Rainbow Man (as P.B. Kane). Forthcoming from him are the collection Monsters and the sequel to RED: Blood RED. He lives in Derbyshire, UK, with his wife Marie O’Regan, his family and a black cat called Mina. Find out more at his site www.shadow-writer.co.uk which has featured Guest Writers such as Stephen King, Neil Gaiman, Charlaine Harris, Dean Koontz and Guillermo del Toro.

There will, once more, be giveaway prizes to be had, and of course a great opportunity to enjoy the company of fellow fans. Please do use the Eventbrite listing to let us know you’re coming, and spread the word to anyone who might be interested! We hope to see you there!

Astronauts’ Wives and Zombies in a Pub! – SFSF Social #2

DSCF7131Well, that was an absolute blast. Last night saw our second Sheffield-based event on the emergent Northern Circuit, held this time at the Old Queen’s Head pub since Eten Cafe stays closed on Sundays. For a wet Sunday night, the turnout was excellent – the pub’s upstairs room was almost packed out.

And with good reason too – our guests more than matched the occasion. BSFA Award-winner Ian Sales kicked off proceedings with a pair of readings; first from the upcoming final volume in the Apollo Quartet, All That Outer Space Allows (you can get the first three here and we wholeheartedly recommend you do!), and then from A Prospect of War, the first volume of his equally epic space opera trilogy (again, coming this year from Tickety Boo Press, in time for EdgeLit).

Ian Sales reads from All That Outer Space Allows

Ian Sales reads from All That Outer Space Allows

In the Q&A session that followed, Ian talked about the depth of research needed for this fourth part of the Apollo Quartet, how it was easier to find out technical details of the Apollo program itself than small social details like what products and advertisements would have been in magazines, and how he had to reconstruct the journeys of the astronauts’ wives from details like where their husbands were stationed.

Dana Fredsti, in the Q&A with Pete Allison

Dana Fredsti, in the Q&A with Pete Allison

Then, after the obligatory pause to enable refills, Pete Allison introduced Dana Fredsti – swordfighter, novelist, and zombie aficionado, and author of the Ashley Parker series of books, which are available from Titan Books. Dana read from Plague Town and then, with Pete on additional dialogue duties, from Plague World – a segment in which a pair of visitors to Sheffield go to a pub and get attacked by zombies…! And the OQH got immortalised in the process! Thorough flesh-ripping fun, which got enthusiastic applause. Pete chaired a quick Q&A session, in which Dana revealed her absolute hatred for outlining. The Q&A was recorded for posterity – when the clips go live online we’ll link to them here!

 

Covetous bibliophiles assemble!

Covetous bibliophiles assemble!

Obviously, there were books to give away too – including two sets of Dana’s trilogy and two sets of Ian’s Apollo Quartet Trilogy-so-far. Just look at that lovely spread of wordy goodness! 😀 – and with all prizes disbursed, the downstairs bar called – once again, it was brilliant to see people stopping back and chatting afterwards. Many thanks to both Ian and Dana, to Titan Books, the excellent Old Queen’s Head, the BFS and BSFA for their support – and to everybody who came to enjoy themselves!

The York Pubmeet returns in May – May 9th to be precise – with (provisionally) KT Davies, Mark Morris, and Lee Harris as guests. SFSF will be representin’ there, and we’ll be passing out more details nearer the time as well as possibly offering transport (convoy!). The Social, meanwhile, will be back – hopefully – in June.