Australian & New Zealand Horror News
Not much in the way of an intro this time as there’s a heck of a lot to get through, so let’s get going. First up, we walk the haunted halls of the AHWA …
… and it’s busy times indeed at the AHWA headquarters. The following has been provided by the big boss, Greg Chapman:
The AHWA has been very busy finalising the upcoming Australian Shadows Awards and the shortlists were recently announced. The winners will be revealed at a special live ceremony at the 2019 Continuum Convention in Melbourne.
The finalists are as follows:
Best Collected Work:
Bones by Andrew Cull, The Dalziel Files by Brian Craddock
Exploring Dark Fiction #2 A Primer to Kaaron Warren
Shadows on the Wall by Steven Paulsen,
Beneath the Ferny Tree by David Schembri
Best Edited Work:
Cthulhu Land of the Long White Cloud & Cthulhu Deep Down Under Volume II – Steve Proposch, Christopher Sequeira, Bryce Stevens, editors
Hellhole An Anthology of Subterranean Horror – Lee Murray, editor
Behind the Mask – Steve Dillon, editor
Best Graphic Novel:
The judges of the Graphic Novel category unanimously agreed on a winner but no shortlist will be provided this year.
Devouring Dark by Alan Baxter
Contrition by Deborah Sheldon
Tide of Stone by Kaaron Warren
Teeth of the Wolf by Dan Rabarts and Lee Murray
Your Mortician Knows by Bee Nielsen
Matinee by Hester J. Rock
Polarity by Jay Caselberg
Revenants of the Antipodes by Kyla Lee Ward
The Middle of the Night by Rebecca Fraser.
The Rocky Wood Award for Nonfiction and Criticism: Several of the nonfiction entries received were excellent short form pieces, with great writing, quality research, and bravery shown in addressing the various subject matter. The judges felt that none were of sufficient depth or length to qualify for the Rocky Wood Award.
Planned and Expected by Piper Mejia
Slither by Jason Nahrung
The Ward of Tindalos by Debbie & Matt Cowens
The House of jack’s Girls by Lee Battersby
Riptide by Dan Rabarts.
The Paul Haines Award for Long Fiction:
Time and Tide by Robert Hood
Love Thee Better by Kaaron Warren
The Black Sea by Chris Mason
Thylacines by Deborah Sheldon
Meanwhile a number of members recently had their works nominated in the Aurealis Awards and the Ditmars. Long-time member Kaaron Warren took out the Best Horror Novel and Best Novella categories at the Aurealis Awards (see the item on Awards later on in this article).
Members recent and upcoming releases:
Andrew Cull – The Viperob Files (Crossroad Press)
Matthew R Davis – Supermassive Black Mass (Demain Publishing)
Greg Chapman – Netherkind (Omnium Gatherum Books)
Stephen Kerczeg – “Angels of the Deep” in Sea of Secrets: A Dragon Soul Press Anthology
Rebecca Fraser – “Once Upon a Moonlit Clearing” in Antipodean SF Issue 250
Jack Dann – “The Carbon Dreamer” in Shivers VIII (Cemetery Dance)
Alister Hodge – The Cavern (Severed Press)
The AHWA’s magazine Midnight Echo will be opening for submissions for its fourteenth issue in the coming months. A guest editor has been appointed the issue and will be announced closer to the submission window.
The Mentor Program will also open soon, with potential mentors currently being selected.
As always, for any information, visit http://www.australasianhorror.wordpress.com.
“Australia’s queen of body horror” Claire Fitzpatrick will be teaching a four-part workshop called Introduction to Horror Writing at the Queensland Writing Centre starting on 17 July. “Whether you are a fan of horror literature or are just beginning your writing endeavours, this four-part introductory workshop will teach you the skills to understand how you can explore human fears through horror writing. Packed with knowledge of how to write a good horror story, by the end of the course, you will have a basic idea of the type of horror you’d like to write, and how to turn your ideas into written work.”
For more information, see https://preview.tinyurl.com/yyslf6jf.
Word from Robert N. Stephenson, owner of Altair Australia Pty Ltd (Publishers), is that The World of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror, Volume 5 is filling well with some standout horror; guest editor for horror is Claire Fitzpatrick. This is the sixth year of this anthology, the first year was under a different name and horror was always underrepresented, but this year there has been an increase of 70% so that every third submission is horror. This bold and beautiful anthology will be launched on the 31 January, 2020 (the same time every year without fail). Guidelines for the anthology can be found at: http://www.robertnstephenson.com.
Oscillate Wildly Press is a Brisbane-based award-winning publisher of Body Horror and Cosmic Horror, established in 2016 by Claire Fitzpatrick. As of 2019, they solely publish The Asylum Diaries, a magazine dedicated to H.P. Lovecraft and body horror. As such, they have two active submission calls. The first is for The Asylum Diaries: Anatomy. The second is for The Asylum Diaries: Arkham. Submission details can be found at https://www.oscillatewildlypress.net/submissions-1.
As mentioned in the previous issue, the next SNAFU (Cohesion Press) is open for submissions right now, and this one is executive edited by Tim Miller! It’s not every day that a small press gets someone like Deadpool’s Tim Miller to run a book for them. The theme is “last stand,” and it will be even more essential than usual to hit every mark, as this is Tim’s SNAFU. He’s reading everything in it and writing an introduction for the volume. His name will be on the front cover. Pays AU5c/word. Guidelines can be found at: https://cohesionpress.com/snafu-submissions/. Go get your grunt on!
Lethal Weapon and Author Aiki Flinthart ran a “Fight like a Girl” master class on May 11, organized by the Queensland Writers Centre. “With more and more ‘strong’ female protagonists appearing in genre fiction, it is essential that authors know how to write authentic fight scenes for them—be they arguments or fisticuffs. This workshop follows on from the three-hour Writing Fight Scenes for Women workshop; however, this master class will be useful to anyone.” Details of the workshop can be found at https://tinyurl.com/yy3w296k. Aiki will also be running the “Fight Like a Girl” introduction class on Sunday 9 June, during Continuum in Melbourne (https://www.continuum.org.au/participate/workshops/). Limited edition copies of the accompanying book will also be available for attendees.
Australia’s longest running online speculative fiction magazine AntipodeanSF (AntiSF) hit a major milestone recently, with the release of its 250th issue! Dedicated to “down under” flash speculative fiction, AntiSF has been regularly published since February 1998. I’m sure everyone in the Australian SpecFic scene offers a standing ovation to long-time editor and publisher Ion “Nuke” Newcombe on this spectacular achievement! The bumper 250th edition “holds over fifty speculative contributions in words and images from the upside-down community.” The issue can be read free online for approximately four weeks at https://www.antisf.com.au/, after which time it will morph into an audio podcast (the AntiSF Radio Show: https://2nvr.org.au/index.php/programs?the-antipodeansf-radio-show), featuring the stories from recently published issues of AntiSF, often narrated by the authors themselves. Extra cool news this time, with a special print edition anthology soon to be released. Check it all out at: https://www.antisf.com.au/. Here’s to another 250 issues, Nuke!
Speaking of successful Australian spec-fic magazines, the long-running Aurealis magazine (Chimaera Publications) has just released its 120th issue! Phew! Another stellar achievement! This professional mass market SF/fantasy magazine has been in print since 1990, although it became a monthly (except for January and December) ezine in October 2011. Available from https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/937454, or you can subscribe at aurealis.com.au. It’s well worth checking out.
Deborah Sheldon, the Award-winning author of Perfect Little Stitches and Other Stories (winner of the Australian Shadows Award “Best Collected Work 2017”), has written a fascinating article called “Why Do I Write Horror,” available now on Kendal Reviews (https://tinyurl.com/yx9mbrme). “Horror appeals to me because it is the most authentic type of fiction. It mirrors life as it really is—unfair, unjust, unpredictable, ultimately lethal—rather than the way we wish it could be.” It’s always interesting reading why other writers write horror, and Deborah has some great things to say. So again I say, go check it out!
And now onto awards, and boy, there are a few to get through! For the sake of this newsletter, I won’t include the complete list of finalists for every award (when I was first writing this, I did include the complete lists and my column grew to 17 pages, which seemed a bit long!), but I will certainly include links to those lists.
The winners of the 2018 Aurealis Awards were announced on 4 May during Swancon in Perth. The complete list of winners can be found at https://aurealisawards.org/2019/05/05/2018-aurealis-awards-winners/.
The Australian Science Fiction Foundation (ASFF) has announced the 2019 shortlists for the Norma K Hemming Award, which covers works published in 2018. Designed to recognise excellence in the exploration of themes of race, gender, sexuality, class, or disability in a published speculative fiction work, the jury of the Norma K Hemming Award considered dozens of entries published in 2018 across the long and short form categories, comprised of short fiction, novellas, novels, edited anthologies, collections, graphic novels, and stage plays. A list of finalist can be found at https://tinyurl.com/y58vwpt7.
Winners of the Australian SF (“Ditmar”) Awards for 2018 will also be announced at Continuum 15 (that’s going to be a great con!). The complete list of finalists can be found at https://tinyurl.com/y5kftjmr.
The finalists for the Sir Julius Vogel Awards for 2019 have also been announced, and this is a long, long list! The Sir Julius Vogel Awards are administered by SFFANZ, the Science Fiction and Fantasy Assn. of New Zealand Inc., and recognise excellence in Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror by New Zealanders. The winners will be announced at GeyserCon, New Zealand’s 40th National Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention, held from May 31-June 2 in Rotorua, NZ. Check out the complete list at http://www.sffanz.org.nz/sjv/sjvFinalists-2019.
Rounding out the awards, we have a special shout out for Chris Mason for picking up a Best Novelette nomination for “The Black Sea” (Beneath the Waves – Tales from the Deep) in the 2018 Shirley Jackson Awards! Way to go, Chris, and good luck! The full list of finalists for the 2018 Shirley Jackson Awards can be found at https://www.shirleyjacksonawards.org/.
Phew. That’s all of them… for now! I expect I’ll have a list of winners for you next time around!
Upcoming conventions for June include:
Continuum 15: Other Worlds (http://www.continuum.org.au/): 7-10 June in Melbourne. Kate Elliott and Ken Liu feature as the Guests of Honour.
Oz Comic Con: 8–9 June in Melbourne. [Editor/writer Christopher Sequeira, alongside Black House Comics (in association with IFWG Publishing), will be launching SuperAustralians, a full-length graphic novel featuring 12 Australian superheroes battling diabolical menaces across the country, with chapters written and drawn by some of the best comic writers and artists around.]
Supanova (https://www.supanova.com.au/): 21–23 June in Sydney, then 28–30 June in Perth.
Speculative Fiction Festival (https://writingnsw.org.au/whats-on/events/speculative-fiction-festival-2019/) – 29 June in Sydney. Programmed by Keith Stevenson, the festival will showcase some of Australia’s leading spec-fic writers, including Kaaron Warren.
All right, then. That’s it from our side of the world. If you’re an Aussie or a Kiwi and have horror news, or know of horror-related events or gatherings or anything else at all, let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org, and I’ll include it here.