Monday, 25 July 2016

You'll Know When You Get There - Interview



When one of my favourite writers interviews another one of my favourite writers, it is a red letter day. Well, it's Monday, actually, as I type this, which is another good reason to look at literary things of interest. Over at the Swan River Press blog Steve Duffy, the Welsh Stephen King (or possibly the Cymric Peter Straub) interviews Lynda E. Rucker, like Steve a recent winner of the Shirley Jackson award and all-round weird fiction luminary. Lynda's new collection features prominently, of course, and it's well worth a read. As you might expect, influences loom large...
LER: We weren't fortunate enough to grow up with the Ghost Stories for Christmas in America, of course, and in fact I think most Americans had never heard of them until the last decade or two. The I ever learned about them was when I saw “The Signalman”, about twelve or fourteen years ago. I'm sure the grass is always greener and all that but I'm increasingly convinced that British children in the 1970s got much cooler programming than we did over in America. 
SD: On the other hand, you could stay up late and watch Kolchak, so there's that.
It's worth pointing out, as an addendum to what we were saying earlier, that while M.R. James is often claimed for the “cosy” school nowadays, there aren’t many lines that send a shudder through me like the description of poor old Paxton at the end of “A Warning To The Curious”: “His mouth was full of sand and stones, and his teeth and jaws were broken to bits. I only glanced once at his face.” 
LER: Oh yes! Not to mention the awful creature in “The Mezzotint” that appears to be making away with a baby in its ghoulish grasp.

Sunday, 17 July 2016

Caveat Emptor!

Somebody is trying to sell a 'lost James McBryde illustration' for an M.R. story on eBay. Yeah, right.



This is it. It looks a bit crap, tbh, and I'm racking my brains as to which M.R. James story it might 'illustrate'. The seller suggests 'Canon Alberic', which is absurd as a. it looks nothing like any scene from the story and b. McBryde successfully illustrated that story anyway. But that's not stopped the seller from asking £895. Phew.

As usual, I'm in the wrong business. If I had to guess I'd say this was a magazine illustration from around the same time, but nothing to do with MRJ. The fact that the seller claims to have 'many more' works by McBryde ought to give even the most naive person pause for thought.

Saturday, 16 July 2016

The Lost Boys - a graphic sequel

One of the best horror movies of the Eighties is getting a comic book/graphic novel reboot, or at least a sequel. More at the link.

LOST BOYS 1 OF 6

Sunday, 10 July 2016

Shirley Jackson Awards

Congratulations to Steve Duffy for winning the Shirley Jackson Novelette Award for his splendid modern ghost story 'Even Clean Hands Can Do Damage'. It appeared in ST 30, which is of course still tremendously available!

Also congratulations to Lynda E. Rucker for her Short Fiction Award, for 'The Dying Season', which appeared in the anthology Aickman's Heirs from Undertow. And that book won the award for Best Edited Anthology. Well done to editor Simon Strantzas and to Michael Kelly, head honcho at Undertow Publications.

Just to give you some idea of the level of competition, Best Single Author Collection for Bazaar of Bad Dreams.