On Thursday 19th October 2017, Peter R. Ellis will be spending the afternoon in Leominster library to promote his latest book Cold Fire, a September Weekes novel that follows on from the Evil Above the Stars series. If you’re near Leominster, come along and say hello, check out the book and find out more about September Weekes and the cold fire of the title.
We had a great time at this year’s Nine Worlds Geekfest. We had only just returned from a wedding in the South of France (where we first had to acclimatise to the heat), when we were rushing around preparing for our biggest convention of the year, in the damp and dull London weather. But as soon as we arrived at the Novotel everything brightened up (apart from the weather!)
The first sight to welcome attendees was the sign inviting us into the convention centre and leading to the registration desks.
We had the honour and privilege to be gold sponsor for this year’s Nine Worlds and had a very visible presence which was very humbling (every room had a display outside with our planet-clock logo next to the Nine Worlds logo as above). We were very proud to be supporting such a fantastically inclusive event.
One of the benefits of being sponsor was to be able to provide a booklet for the attendees’ goody bags. As we were having a launch party for two books on Saturday afternoon, it seemed like the best use of that opportunity would be to provide a sampler of both books, as well as the chance to show off our lovely authors, artists (and now, first voice artist) as well as all our book covers. (I have already blogged about this booklet when we delivered it on the Wednesday beforehand, but in case you missed that, here’s a look at it anyway:)
We had a double table in the Vendors’ room and spent the rest of Friday morning setting it up. If you’ve seen us at any other events you’ll recognise our layout:
When the doors to the Vendors’ room opened at 1 o’clock, there was a queue of people waiting outside. But, overall, Friday was fairly quiet (as at most conventions). Throughout the rest of the weekend it was always clear when the panels had ended (there was a 45 minute gap between sessions to allow for winding down, setting up and getting from one panel to the next – a model that should be followed by other conventions!) as the Vendors’ room quickly filled up for about half an hour and then thinned out for the next hour. After the first of these influxes of people it became clear that we had insufficient light above half of our table (and some other vendors’ tables too) as most of the ceiling lights were in the centre of the room putting our table in the shadow of anyone who was standing trying to look at our books. Meriel from Nine Worlds was looking after the vendors and she and Jess (who was the Nine Worlds interface with the hotel) set off on a mission to resolve the problem. The hotel had no standalone lamps to offer, but a while later Jess re-appeared with a whole load of very cool strings of lights, that she had bought at a nearby Primark, and distributed them to those vendors who needed more light.
The lights proved to be an attraction in themselves and I’m sure Jess could have made a decent commission supplying them to all the people who came up to ask where we had got them!
As at last year’s Nine Worlds, we spent the weekend chatting to some lovely people: imaginative, amusing, entertaining, thoughtful, even profound at times. It didn’t matter whether they were in the guise of a squirrel, dalek, alien, evil witch, jedi, lemming, or even human. The Nine Worlds attendee badges included communication preference overlays and pronoun stickers to help ensure not just inclusivity but also prevent inadvertent offence (another model that could usefully be followed by other conventions).
We also endeavoured to sell some books, of course, and had spirited discussion on the relative merits of eBooks and print editions (and, indeed audiobooks) with more than one visitor to our table.
On Saturday evening, at 5pm, we held the aforementioned book launch party. Setting up was greatly eased by the unexpected help provided by Nine Worlds staff who were on hand to reconfigure the room for us. We had John Gribbin and Zoë Sumra reading from their new books (Don’t Look Back and The Wages of Sin, respectively), and talking a little about themselves and their writing in response to questions from the audience and from our interviewer Peter R. Ellis. The audience was not as large as we had hoped – but it’s quality not quantity that’s important and they were a splendid bunch of people! The other advantage of fewer attendees is that we had plenty of wine left over to bring home (which we will be quietly drinking over the next few months).
All too soon, Sunday afternoon arrived and the Vendors’ room closed its doors and everyone started disassembling their tables. Within an hour, we had our books, posters and other paraphernalia all packed into boxes ready to be taken home (courtesy of our youngest daughter) – and once again the ever-helpful Nine Worlds staff quickly moved our boxes down to the loading area for us while we waited for the car.
Sunday evening was spent in a nearby Italian restaurant with friends, enjoying delicious food and lively conversation. Monday morning we checked out and headed for the train home.
Although we have been attending conventions almost since the inception of Elsewhen Press, it is still both exciting and exhausting. So we are always very grateful for the help that we get from our authors, friends and the convention organisers and volunteers. This year’s Nine Worlds was no exception. We made it through, more or less retaining our sanity, thanks to the support and help of our authors Siobhan McVeigh, Peter R. Ellis, Christopher Nuttall (along with Aisha and, of course, Eric who gains more fans at every convention!), Zoë Sumra (with Misha and Sylvianne), John Gribbin, Rebecca Hall, Edwin Hayward, and Susan Oke, and the support of Nine Worlds staff and volunteers especially Meriel and Jess.
Only a couple of days to go until Nine Worlds 2017 gets underway.
We’re Gold Sponsor, so we’re already pretty excited! Goodness only knows what state we’ll be in be by Friday morning!
We’ve been to Hammersmith already today to drop off our shiny booklets that will be in each attendee’s goody bag.
As well as pics of our authors and book covers, it also includes a whole chapter from Zoë Sumra’s new book The Wages of Sin, the second book in her Underside series, and the whole of the eponymous short story from John Gribbin’s collection Don’t Look Back. We’ll be having a launch party on Saturday afternoon for both of those books, with readings, interview, Q&A, signing and refreshments.
We hope to see you there – come and say hello to us, we’ll be in the Vendor’s room (Bourg) throughout the weekend, and in the Mouton Cadet room for the launch party on Saturday at 5pm.
Want a sneak peek at our goody bag booklet? Okay then…
Well, actually, it was a yurt but that wouldn’t have been alliterative.
Saturday the 8th July saw a vibrant and excited group of people from far and wide descend on the Milgi restaurant in Cardiff. Secreted at the back of the restaurant in an unexpected outdoor space is a yurt full of comfy sofas. Once Tej and friends had been let loose on it there were vines hanging down from the central opening and draped across tables, along with grapes too. But more importantly there was wine, I mean books. We were all there for the launch party for Dinnusos Rises by Tej Turner. It was a good turnout and a fantastic time was had by all. Before proceedings really got underway Tej was interviewed on camera, giving some thoughtful insight into his influences and motivation. Then, for some reason, it was decided to interview yours truly (fame at last!). What’s even more surprising is that any of my interview actually made it through the final edit.
If you were there you know what a great time we all had. If you weren’t there, you should now be kicking yourself at a missed opportunity. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and met some really lovely people. Thanks Tej.
If you want to watch the interview it’s on Youtube:
The 2nd Sci Fi Convention in Bromley (Kent) is celebrating the 150th anniversary of H.G. Wells (born 150 years ago today in Bromley High Street!) with free entry to loads of events in the Town Centre on Saturday 24th September. With replica props, cosplay, authors, special guest actors & signers, exhibitions, workshops and a traders market, there’s plenty for everyone. Even better, Zoë Sumra, author of Sailor to a Siren, will be on an author panel and signing copies of her book afterwards.
You can find out more about Sci Fi Bromley from their website here.
Independent speculative fiction publisher sponsors multi-media multi-genre residential pop culture convention in London this August
DARTFORD, KENT – 10 June 2016 – Elsewhen Press, an independent UK publisher specialising in Speculative Fiction, is proud to announce sponsorship of the 2016 Nine Worlds Geekfest.
The first Nine Worlds Geekfest was in August 2013 following a Kickstarter campaign, and was a huge success. Each year the number of attendees has been increasing and this year Nine Worlds has moved from Heathrow to Hammersmith to allow for growth and to enable the addition of a dedicated expo for vendors. They have also been seeking sponsors to help Nine Worlds grow bigger and better. The Nine Worlds Geekfest was “founded on the radical belief that geekdom should not be restricted by class, age, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, disability, or the ability to cite Wookiepedia in arguments.” These are values that Elsewhen Press shares and why we are proud to sponsor Nine Worlds.
Elsewhen Press has been an enthusiastic supporter of conventions since our establishment five years ago, so we are delighted that there will be an Expo at this year’s Geekfest, and we will be there selling our books for all our fellow geeks to ‘share and enjoy’, accompanied by some of our authors and artists.
Notes for Editors
About Nine Worlds Geekfest
Nine Worlds Geekfest burst out of the woodwork in August 2013 in style. The inaugural con took place at Heathrow, London, with over 1500 attendees. In March 2013, Nine Worlds ran a Kickstarter fundraising drive that was 232% oversubscribed and raised £23,000 (the second most successful convention launch in Kickstarter’s history), demonstrating the huge interest for an event of this kind in London.
Innovative and ground-breaking, Nine Worlds brings together a plethora of strands, from the more typical sci-fi tracks featuring gaming, comics, literature, fanfic and film, to Queer Fandom, Steampunk, Skepticism and Geek Feminism. Nine Worlds also hosted the UK’s first academic conference on geek culture, with scholars gathering from around the country.
This year’s Nine Worlds is at Novotel London West in Hammersmith from August 12th-14th, 2016. There’s a soft start on Thursday evening with low key events and socialising, and formal start on Friday morning, right through to Sunday evening. It’s a residential convention – attendees normally stay on-site for the weekend. Which means that the party doesn’t stop at dusk, and there are games, talks, discos, live music and performance, and all-night film marathons running through the evenings. This year, for the first time, there’ll also be an expo running on Saturday and Sunday. Convention attendees will get full access in their ticket price, but expo day tickets will be sold separately for Saturday and Sunday closer to the time.
Peter gave a brief overview of the main character of the series, September Weekes, with a hint at what had happened in the first two volumes. He gave a little background about the other land, Gwlad, where September has been combating evil and set the scene for Unity of Seven in which some of the story also takes place in Wales. He then read a few short extracts to help the audience better understand the characters of September and Malice as well as some of the locations.
Over the Easter weekend, the Manchester Hilton Deansgate was taken over by Eastercon (known this year as Mancunicon). Among the various panels and events was our launch of Existence is Elsewhen. Of the twenty authors of stories in this (excellent and wonderfully imaginative) anthology, nine were at Mancunicon, along with Alison who designed the cover and the fleurons inside the book. We held a launch party in the Presidential Suite on the 22nd floor.
We were supposed to start at sunset, but got underway a little late – but we still had good views out over the city. Each of the authors present read a short extract from their own story – just enough to whet the appetite of the audience who were very attentive, in spite of (or perhaps thanks to) the wine and beer that was also being consumed. And of course there were flying saucers to be eaten as well as small chocolate eggs.
Pete started with an introduction and then read Christopher Nuttall’s extract from The Girl in Black for him, as Christopher was busy soothing his one-year old who had just decided he didn’t like the room being so full.
Elsewhen author Dave Weaver (‘Jacey’s Kingdom’, ‘Japanese Daisy Chain’, ‘The Black Hole Bar’) was one of nine writers selected from a large entry list to read at the Rattle Tales writers’ group’s special Brighton Fringe event on Thursday 21st May. The event is now in its fourth sell out year. Eighty literature lovers made their way to The Brunswick in Hove and downstairs to the intimate cabaret style venue complete with muted lighting and its own bar. Dave was on first to perform his flash fiction piece ‘Red Wire, Green Wire’ which can be read below. A section of the Rattle Tale’s review of the evening concerning Dave’s performance is as follows:
‘Dave Weaver kicked things off with Red Wire, Green Wire, a flash fiction that was quite literally incendiary as he took us through the thoughts of a bomb disposal expert on a very difficult mission. The crowd was rapt and the three minute story had us all breathless, as Dave counted down to the cutting of the last wire… Rattles were shaken enthusiastically as the crowd tried to decide the fate of the protagonist.’
Red Wire, Green Wire Ok, last screw out, cover off, take a look – steady; don’t want to rock the boat. Good, just as I thought; IED with Russian timer; ammonium nitrate fertilizer stacked in drinks machine next to central pillar. Take out core support; building crumples like a pack of cards. I’ve got this one though, no problem, home in time for Jack’s birthday; take him for a Macdonald’s, Disney, nice one.
Wait, a click, what was that? Something new…? Oh I see; one minute timer starts when air pressure changes; when cover’s removed. Didn’t see that coming… Little red numbers; fifty-two, fifty-one… Doesn’t matter, loads of time; cut the live wire; seven colours, like a little plastic rainbow; one live, rest fake, only cut the live though or its bye-bye time. Yellow, blue, gold, brown, black, red and green; put a clip on each, test it; simples. Seven colours; not like in the movies; only two there, red and green, which one live they always have to guess, stupid, not like real thing; no guessing today; nothing left to chance. Six fake; this one’s the daddy, cut it, done!
No, they’re not stopping! Twenty-nine, twenty-eight… Why, why…? Seen it, underneath; duplicate set, another rainbow. Very clever, nice one… These harder to get at, funny angle, can’t get clip on properly, keeps coming off; calm down, push my hand round the back, hold it on, cutters round the front. That’s a fake; now the black, that too, and the gold, clip slides off, do it again, gotcha. Four more; how long…? Fourteen seconds, piece of piss, test it, not you brown, ten seconds, yellow next; push the clip down more; another dud; six seconds to go. Just you two now; red wire, green wire, no time for test; cut the live, but which?
Three… two… nice one.
Launch events over Easter weekend for the latest in Christopher Nuttall’s bestselling Bookworm series, The Janus Cycle debut novel by author Tej Turner and the first two volumes in new Epic Fantasy series Evil Above the Stars by Peter R. Ellis
DARTFORD, KENT – 3 April 2015 – Elsewhen Press, an independent UK publisher specialising in Speculative Fiction, is thrilled to announce that this weekend’s Eastercon (aka Dysprosium 2015) will play host to launch events for the latest titles in the ever-expanding Elsewhen Press catalogue. As well as the official launch events, the authors will be taking part in various other activities throughout the Eastercon Convention, which is being held at the Park Inn Hotel at Heathrow.
Christopher Nuttall’sBookworm III: The Best Laid Plans is the latest instalment in his best-selling Bookworm series. The first in the series, Bookworm, won the Gold Award for Adult Fiction in the 2013 Wishing Shelf Independent Book Awards and the German translation rights were acquired by Random House for publication in January 2015 under their Blanvalet imprint (with the title Die Bibliothek der Schwarzen Magie 1 – Die Wissende). Released first as an eBook in February, Bookworm III immediately reached the top 10 in Amazon’s Fantasy bestseller charts in the US, UK, Germany and Australia.
Tej Turner’sThe Janus Cycle is his debut novel, combining uncompromising realism with fantastic elements in a book that is simultaneously urban fantasy and science fiction. Best described as gritty, sexy and surreal, it tells the stories of eight different people who only have the Janus nightclub in common. But a strange girl keeps appearing to each of the protagonists to cajole them into being at Janus at the same time. Is she a mischief- maker having fun or, as some of them start to suspect, a time-traveller trying to prevent an impending disaster?
Peter R. Ellis’sEvil Above the Stars is an intriguing new fantasy series set in a world that seems at once familiar and yet very different, combining Celtic mythology, the underlying principles of alchemy and Ptolemaic cosmology. Gwlad, the Land, is an almost mystical place where the planets really do revolve around the Earth, the power of the four elements is tangible and the people are under attack by an evil, known as the Malevolence. September Weekes is a teenage girl who finds herself transported to Gwlad and expected to defend the inhabitants.
Eastercon sees the launch of the print editions of these books, available from good booksellers.
Notes for Editors
About Christopher Nuttall
Christopher Nuttall has been planning sci-fi books since he learnt to read. Born and raised in Edinburgh, Chris created an alternate history website and eventually graduated to writing full-sized novels. Studying history independently allowed him to develop worlds that hung together and provided a base for storytelling. After graduating from university, Chris started writing full-time. As an indie author he has self-published a number of novels, but this is his seventh fantasy to be published by Elsewhen Press. Chris is currently living in Edinburgh with his wife, muse, and critic Aisha and their son.
About Tej Turner
Tej Turner has just begun branching out as a writer and been published in anthologies, including Impossible Spaces (Hic Dragones Press) and The Bestiarum Vocabulum (Western Legends).
His parents moved around a bit while he was growing up so he doesn’t have any particular place he calls “home”, but most of his developing years were spent in the West country of England. He went on to Trinity College in Carmarthen to study Film and Creative Writing, and then later to complete an MA at The University of Wales, Lampeter, where he minored in ancient history but mostly focused on sharpening his writing skills.
Tej has just returned from backpacking his way across Asia, gallivanting around Burma, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Nepal. When not trekking through jungles or exploring temples, reefs, and caves, he is usually based in Cardiff, where he works by day, writes by moonlight, and squeezes in the occasional trip to roam around megalithic sites and the British countryside. The next time he has enough money he will be flying off on another adventure. The Janus Cycle is his first published novel. He is currently engaged in writing an epic fantasy series.
About Peter R. Ellis
Peter would like to say he’s been a writer all his life but it is only since retiring as a teacher in 2010 that he has been able to devote enough time to writing to call it a career. Brought up in Cardiff, he studied Chemical Physics at the University of Kent at Canterbury, then taught chemistry (and a bit of physics) in Norwich, the Isle of Wight and Thames Valley. His first experience of publishing was in writing educational materials which he has continued to do since retiring. Of his fictional writing, Evil Above the Stars is his first published speculative fiction series.
Peter has been a fan of science fiction and fantasy since he was young, has an (almost) complete collection of classic SF by Asimov, Ballard, Clarke, Heinlein and Niven, among others, while also enjoying fantasy by Tolkien, Donaldson and Ursula Le Guin. Of more recent authors Iain M Banks, Alastair Reynolds and China Mieville have his greatest respect. His Welsh upbringing also engendered a love of the language (even though he can’t speak it) and of Welsh mythology like the Mabinogion. All these strands come together in the Evil Above the Stars series. He lives in Herefordshire with his wife, Alison, who is a great supporter.