Vol 4. No 1. January 2, 2014:
Happy New Year! Plenty, plenty to talk about since December’s newsletter, so let’s get to it. First, though, I can’t turn the page on 2013 without another mention of the fourth annual guide to regional science fiction and fantasy which covers 2013 in regional sf/f books. We celebrated a pretty big stack of those at the first annual regional author holiday book expo— here are some pictures of the authors and a few guests at the event. Big thanks to them, to the folks who stopped by to support the expo, and to Atomic Empire for hosting us.
But the big news last month was the announcement of The Manly Wade Wellman Award by the newly-launched North Carolina Speculative Fiction Foundation. I’m very hopeful that this can be a fantastic yearly celebration of North Carolina’s fine, fertile field of speculative fiction authors and their books. Just sneaking into that 2013 crop is a New Year’s Eve release, The Grendel Affair by Lisa Shearin, ahead of two regional releases next week as both Cate Tiernan and Faith Hunter have new books due on Jan 7, and another as Jenna Black has a novel due out on Jan 14. Whew!
Speaking of Hunter, she had a very busy December with an anthology Kicking It co-edited with Kalayna Price on December 3 and two books on December 10, a collection Cat ‘O Nine Tales: The Jane Yellowrock Stories and (with Carol Malcolm) The Jane Yellowrock World Companion. December was also a big month for “The Hardest Part” at bullspec.com, with gest essays from L. Jagi Lamplighter, Nick Mamatas, and Tina Connolly. Meanwhile in radio appearances, I had a chance to talk with Durham translator Matthew Ross on Carolina Book Beat (which later in the month had Wilmington author Jason Mott on as well), and (with Jamie Fiocco of Flyleaf Books) recommend the year’s best regional books on The State of Things.
While my 2014 preview is coming soon, in terms of events there’s plenty going on to start the year, highlighted by illogiCon on January 10-12 in Raleigh, bringing guests of honor Mary Robinette Kowal and Lawrence M. Shoen to town, ahead of a packed month of events with William Shatner (Jan 12), Scientists with Stories (Jan 16), Carrie Vaughn (Jan 17), a Knights of Badassdom screening (Jan 22), and (on Feb 1) Wendy Webb. See you out and about! And if you really want to catch me, keep an eye on the illogiCon programming page…
UPCOMING EVENTS: JANUARY 2014
NEW-NEW: 5 (Sunday) — Mike Acosta wrote with a call for extras for a local film. “Just wanted to let you know that I’m shooting a film locally. It is a social commentary on the devaluation of artists & creatives in our society. Very artsy. We are presenting local artists, writers etc… to play extras in the film. Our first extra call is Sunday 1/5 at 4:00 – 12:00. Location is Hillsborough, NC. Let me know if you have any that may be interested and I’ll send you the address. The project’s e-mail address is email@example.com. They can contact us through there for any further info.” There’s also a Facebook page with info on the casting call.
NEW: 6 (Monday) 10 am — Samuel Montgomery-Blinn interviews Lisa Shearin on Carolina Book Beat on WCOM-FM.
7 — Local book release day for Darkest Fear (Birthright) by Cate Tiernan (Jan 7, 2014)
7 — Regional book release day for Black Arts: A Jane Yellowrock Novel by Faith Hunter (Jan 7, 2014)
NEW: 10 (Friday) 7 pm — The Carolina Theatre of Durham hosts a special screening of the director’s cut of The Wicker Man. More info: http://www.carolinatheatre.org/films/wicker-man-third-man
10-12 (Friday to Sunday) — illogiCon iii: The Search for Schrödington’s Gold at the Embassy Suites Raleigh-Durham/Research Triangle, with author guests of honor Mary Robinette Kowal and Lawrence M. Shoen, authors Laura Anne Gilman, John Kessel, Gail Z. Martin, James Maxey, Tony Daniel, Misty Massey, Richard Dansky, Natania Barron, and more. More info: http://www.illogicon.com/
NEW: 12 (Sunday) 7:30 pm — William Shatner visits Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts in Raleigh on Sunday Jan. 12 at 7:30 pm for “his one man show SHATNER’S WORLD; We Just Live In It to select cities across the U.S, following a Broadway debut. The 90-minute show will take audiences on a hilarious and often poignant voyage through Shatner’s life and career, from Shakespearean stage actor to internationally known icon and raconteur, known as much for his unique persona as for his expansive body of work.” More info: http://www.dukeenergycenterraleigh.com/event/shatner-4718?camefrom=EMCL_196211_10072994
14 — Local book release day for Watchers in the Night (Guardians of the Night) by Jenna Black (Jan 14, 2014)
16 (Thursday) 8 pm — The Monti teams up with Scientists with Stories and the UNC Morehead Planetarium to produce a one-of-a-kind storytelling show under the dome at the Planetarium. The theme is #ScienceFail. More info: http://www.themonti.org/events/sciencefail
17 (Friday) 7:30 pm — Quail Ridge Books hosts Carrie Vaughn for Dreams of the Golden Age. More info: http://bullspec.com/2013/11/06/news-quail-ridge-books-to-host-author-carrie-vaughn-on-january-17-2014/
NEW: 17-19 (Fri-Sun) — MarsCon in Williamsburg, VA with writer guests of honor Jim C. Hines and Carrie Ryan. More info: http://www.marscon.net/
NEW-NEW: 20 (Monday) 1-4 pm — Book Harvest NC is having a children’s book drive at the Carolina Theatre of Durham. “10,000 Books for Kids (10KBK) is Book Harvest’s annual community-wide book drive on MLK Day and a celebration of diversity, literacy, and book ownership for all kids. Help us bring in 10,000 books in a single afternoon! Everyone! Round up your new and gently used children’s books – and those of your neighbors, friends, classmates, and coworkers – and bring them to us at the Carolina Theatre on the afternoon of MLK Day. Working together, we can ensure that all our children have books! Durham Mayor Bill Bell will kick off the festivities at 1:00 p.m. Also joining us will be: Wool E Bull; the Only Burger truck; musicians Matt Phillips and John Marshall; a pop-up store from Letters Bookshop; and local author “celebrity volunteers”, including Sarah Dessen, Daniel Wallace, Randall Kenan, Stephanie Greene, John Stanley, j.j. Johnson, Kristyn Kusek Lewis, Frances O’Roark Dowell, and John Claude Bemis.”
NEW: 21 (Tuesday) — Knights of Badassdom screening: “If you haven’t heard about this movie, it’s about a group of LARPers who accidentally summon a succubus in the course of the game, and it stars Peter Dinklage (Tyrion from Game of Thrones), Ryan Kwanten (Jason Stackhouse from True Blood), and Summer Glau (River from Firefly), as well as Steve Zahn and Margarita Levieva. Here’s the trailer. We’ve been waiting for a release for… forever… and now there’s finally a limited theater release through this thing called Tugg, which means a pre-set number of tickets (71 in this case) have to be sold in order for the showing to happen. The showing is Jan 21, 7:30pm at Carmike Park Place 16. Here’s how to buy a ticket: http://www.tugg.com/events/7393”
NEW-NEW: 30 (Thursday) 7 pm — Urban Fantasy/paranormal romance author Jeaniene Frost (who lives in the Asheville area) has two NC tour stops of note for Up From The Grave‘s release on January 28th. The first is January 29th at Malaprops Book Store in Asheville, NC at 7pm and the second is January 30th at the Barnes and Noble of Cary, NC at 7pm. The Cary event also includes VA author Pamela Palmer. More info: http://store-locator.barnesandnoble.com/event/82525
1 (Saturday) 11 am – Flyleaf Books hosts Wendy Webb for The Vanishing. More book info: http://www.hachettebookgroup.com/titles/wendy-webb/the-vanishing/9781401341947/
21-23 (Friday to Sunday) — MystiCon in Roanoke, VA with guests John de Lancie (ST:TNG’s “Q”), author Todd McCaffery, author A.J. Hartley, and more. More info: http://mysticon-va.com/
4 — Local book release day for Ghost Train to New Orleans (The Shambling Guides) by Durham’s Mur Lafferty (Mar 4, 2014).
NEW: 7 (Friday) 7:30 pm — Quail Ridge Books hosts Kim Harrison for The Undead Pool. More info: http://www.quailridgebooks.com/event/theundeadpool
NEW: 17 (Monday) 7 pm — Flyleaf Books hosts the “Three Nightmares You Can’t Resist” tour with authors Kristen Simmons, Mindee Arnett, and Jenna Black. More info: http://www.flyleafbooks.com/event/three-nightmares-you-can%E2%80%99t-resist-tour-featuring-kristen-simmons-mindee-arnett-jenna-black
1 — Regional book release day for Charlotte author Gail. Z. Martin’s Reign of Ash, book two in her Ascendant Kingdoms series from Orbit Books after 2013′s Ice Forged.
5-6 (Saturday and Sunday) — 2014 North Carolina Literary Festival hosted by the NCSU Libraries at NC State University; the primary venue for the Festival will be the James B. Hunt Jr. Library on Centennial Campus. “This free public event is presented on a rotating basis by the Duke University Libraries, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Libraries, the NCSU Libraries, and North Carolina Central University. The Festival is designed to attract people of all ages, from our surrounding communities and across the state. The program will be varied and will include author readings and discussions, book signings, activities, bookstore sales and more.”
11-13 (Friday to Sunday) — JordanCon 6 in Rosell, Georgia, with author guest of honor Patrick Rothfuss and artist guest of honor Larry Elmore. More info: http://www.jordancon.org/
NEW-NEW: 25-27 — RavenCon in Richmond, Virginia with Guest Elizabeth Bear (2013 Locus Award Winner) and Ghost Mary Shelley. More info: http://www.ravencon.com/
26-27 (Saturday and Sunday) — The Festival of Legends at Storybook Farm in Chapel Hill.
6 — Local book release day for The Sea Without a Shore by David Drake (May 6, 2014) — Lt. Leary series
16-18 (Friday to Sunday) — DeepSouthCon 52 at new convention ConTrails in Bristol, Virginia. (That’s the big that sticks out over Tennessee in the southwest corner of the state.) With Guest of Honor: Gordon Van Gelder and Artist Guest of Honor: Charles Vess. Additionally, the Rebel and Phoenix Awards will be presented. “Contrails is a new convention in scenic Bristol, Virginia. We’re an “old fashioned” sci fi literature con with an emphasis on the written word, discussion and southern hospitality.” More info: https://sites.google.com/site/contrailssf/home
20 — Local book release day for Durham author and playwright Monica Byrne’s debut novel, The Girl in the Road.
23-25 (Friday to Sunday) — Animazement in Raleigh, NC. More info: http://www.animazement.com/
NEW-NEW: 23-26 (Friday to Monday) — BaltiCon 48 with Guest of Honor Brandon Sanderson, 2013 Compton Crook Award winner Myke Cole, 2014 Heinlein Award recipient Geoffrey A. Landis, and Ghost of Honor Robert Jordan. More info: http://www.balticon.org/
NEW: Shatterdome Atlanta 2014 is a new fan-run Pacific Rim convention being held May 31, 2014 at the Atlanta Marriott Perimeter Center being put on by (among others) Conni Covington. Here are some links to learn more; they’re still pretty early in planning so I don’t see guest lists and such yet: http://shatterdomeatl.tumblr.com/ and https://www.facebook.com/events/1376406699280500/
(May 30) to June 1 (Friday to Sunday) — ConCarolinas in Charlotte, with guest of honor George R.R. Martin. More info: http://concarolinas.org/
26-29 (Thursday to Sunday) — ConTemporal in Raleigh at the Hilton North Raleigh Midtown. “Join us for the Third Annual Extravaganza!” More info: http://contemporal.org/
11-13 (Friday to Sunday) — ConGregate in downtown Winston-Salem. More info: http://www.con-gregate.com/
15-16 (Saturday and Sunday) — NC Comicon at the Durham Convention Center.
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