realthog: (leavingfortusa)

So tomorrow it's back to hospital (a different hospital, in fact, but when you're staring at the ceiling blearily they all look much the same) to have a bit more surgery done.

This time it's nothing so baroque or flamboyant as on my last excursion: merely a matter of having arterial stents ("kissing stents" is the rather charming technical term) emplaced in both legs via a puncture in my groin area; as a special bonus, they shave my groin for free!*

As far as I can understand, the experience should be roughly the same as for the angiogram I underwent a few months ago, and I ought to be back home by evening. I get the impression that for the next few days I may be of use for not much else but looking pitiful and occasionally drooling in an earnest manner -- two activities for which I have a pronounced talent. If I'm up to it, I'll do some research reading for Bogus Science; if the residual anaesthetic is still making my mind wander, I guess my reading matter will be . . . less demanding. To be honest, I have my fingers crossed I should be able to carry on work as usual: there's a lot to be done.

Recovery should be fast thereafter. My hope is to get across to Nottingham, UK, for Fantasycon in mid-September, where there's the possibility I can do something to assist my novel The Dragons of Manhattan, currently in severe danger of being "orphaned" owing to circumstances beyond its publisher's control (major illness, something that's of course far more important than the fate of any novel . . . yet I have to think about the novel too). If I do make it across, this'll necessarily be -- for reasons of both expense and time -- a down-and-dirty trip, just there and back, with none of the bopping around to see friends/rellies that's usually a major part of such ventures.

Of course, another lure of Fantasycon is that it'd be nice to be there in person for the British Fantasy Awards ceremony, just to witness first-hand my failing to pick up a BFA for the anthology New Writings in the Fantastic. I've managed to miss the vast majority of awards ceremonies in which I've had an interest, so . . .

* As they did preparatory to angiogramming me. My innocent fantasies of this act being performed by a Barbarella-style delight were shattered cruelly when the nurse in question appeared at my bedside, complete with his nautical swagger and his bulging, tat-adorned biceps. All that was missing was the can of spinach.
realthog: (new writings in the fantastic)
Courtesy of Chris Teague, of Pendragon Press:

British Fantasy Award

Alphabetical List of top five nominees in all categories:

(Note: Where the list has more than 5 nominations, this is due to voting ties for one or more runner-up places)

Novel: The August Derleth Award

Ramsey Campbell, THE GRIN OF THE DARK, PS Publishing

Joe Hill, HEART SHAPED BOX, Gollancz

Michael Marshall, THE INTRUDERS, HarperCollins Publishers

Sarah Pinborough, THE TAKEN, Dorchester Publishing Co

Dan Simmons, THE TERROR, Little Brown & Co

Michael Marshall Smith, THE SERVANTS, Earthling Publications 


Eric Brown, STARSHIP SUMMER, PS Publishing

Tim Lebbon, AFTER THE WAR (DOUBLE NOVELLA), Subterranean Press

Gary McMahon, ALL YOUR GODS ARE DEAD, Humdrumming

Del Stone jr., BLACK TIDE, Telos Publishing

Conrad Williams, RAIN, Gray Friar Press

Conrad Williams, THE SCALDING ROOMS, PS Publishing


Short Fiction

Ramsey Campbell, DIGGING DEEP, Phobic: Modern Horror Stories, Comma Press

Christopher Fowler, THE SPIDER KISS, The Mammoth Book of Monsters, Robinson

Joe Hill, THUMBPRINT, Postscripts # 10, PS Publishing

Joel Lane, MY STONE DESIRE, Black Static # 1, TTA Press

Tim Lebbon, DISCOVERING GHOSTS, Post Scripts # 10 Spring 2007, PS Publishing




Paul Finch, STAINS, Gray Friar Press

Christopher Fowler, OLD DEVIL MOON, Serpent's Tail

Stephen Gallagher, PLOTS AND MISADVENTURES, Subterranean Press

Gary McMahon, DIRTY PRAYERS, Gray Friar Press

Tony Richards, GOING BACK, Elastic Press



Charles Black, THE BLACK BOOK OF HORROR, Mortbury Press



D. F. Lewis, ZENCORE!, Meganthus



Small Press

Andy Cox, Black Static

Peter Crowther, PS Publishing

Peter Crowther, Postscripts

Andrew Hook, Elastic Press

Steve Upham, Screaming Dreams



Vincent Chong

Les Edwards (Edward Miller)

Dave McKean

Bryan Talbot

Steve Upham



Allen Ashley, PLANET DODO COLUMN, Midnight Street



Darren Turpin, UKSF BOOKNEWS

Mark Valentine, WORMWOOD, Tartarus Press

realthog: (real copies!)

BBC Wales has used a cover shot of my anthology New Writings in the Fantastic (Pendragon Press, 2007, currently longlisted for a British Fantasy Society Award -- vote early, vote often!) as illustration for a story on its website about a skiffy event at the University of Glamorgan:

realthog: (real copies!)

Just learned that my anthology New Writings in the Fantastic (2007, Pendragon Press) has been longlisted for a BFSA (Best Anthology category;

I'm obviously mighty gruntled -- but even more so that two of the stories therein have been nominated in the appropriate category.

Step forward to receive a big hand:

Kate Riedel, for "Song Cycle"

Paul Pinn, for "Borderline Charm"

Here's rootin' for you both!

realthog: (Default)
In line with the precedent established by [ profile] imago1 . . .

Dave Hutchinson ([ profile] hutch0) is going to be editing the next volume of the New Writings in the Fantastic series, and a couple of days ago announced at his Table of Contents for the anthology. Much to my delight, there at the bottom of the list (so presumably intended to fill the coveted Grand Finale position in the book, rather than serve as the Appendix in small print which nobody reads) is my 16,250-word novella "The Beach of the Drowned".

It's a kind of alternate timelines cum afterlife cum fantastic voyage cum ghost story cum parallel lives-type sciencefictional/fantasy piece -- which is to say, it's the sort of odd duck that would give the average magazine editor heeby-jeebies but which the New Writings in the Fantastic series -- and Hutchinson in particular, luckily for me! -- smiles upon.

The odd thing is that I wrote the story eighteen months or two years ago and was very pleased with it; however, recognizing its odd-duck status and mindful of those editorial heeby-jeebies, I couldn't think of anywhere to send it so stuck it in a metaphorical drawer. Perhaps I can slip it into a collection one day when no one's looking, I thought. It was only when Hutchinson mentioned the other day he was just about to close the anthology that I had this sudden brainwave and . . .

Ahem. So I'm the Slow-on-the-Uptake Kid.

realthog: (Default)
There's been another very favourable (and very long) review for my Fall '07 anthology New Writings in the Fantastic, this time by Jim Steel over at Whispers of Wickedness ( Steel highlights a bunch of the stories for further description, in particular liking Steve Redwood's "Hot Cross Son" and especially Kate Riedel's "Song Cycle". His concluding para reads thus:

There is much that is good in here. You can expect to see many of the stories reprinted in the Year’s Best anthologies mentioned at the [review's] start.

Well, I'd hope so. I've been sitting here by the telephone . . .

realthog: (Default)
Earlier this year, Pam and I went to Nottingham, UK, for Fantasycon, the annual convention of the British Fantasy Society. The main motivation was that Chris Teague of Pendragon Press ([profile] pendragonpress) wanted to launch my anthology New Writings in the Fantastic there, and I'd promised him that, if he did so, we'd cross the Atlantic for the launch. Hearing we were planning to be there, our dear friend Ellen Datlow ([personal profile] ellen_datlow) asked if I could accept on her behalf this year's Karl Edward Wagner Award (for lifetime achievement/contribution in the field of fantasy literature), which she'd won -- and no one more deservingly, I should add.

Last night, as pals Barbara and Randy (a.k.a. [profile] randeroo) Dannenfelser were celebrating Hogmanay with us, in particular with a three-litre bottle of excellent Belgian lambic beer that Randy had managed to win in a raffle, I got an e-mail from Martin Roberts of the British Fantasy Society. He has just posted the video of the incompetent little performance to which I subjected the assembled throng when accepting the award for Ellen, and you can, if masochistic, see it here: It is not advised for children, the elderly, the frail, or any viewers of a nervous disposition . . . Perhaps you might not want the servants to watch it, either.
realthog: (morgan brighteyes)
Yes, folx, and this time it's the Featured Review at SF Site. Reviewer Mario Guslandi concludes:

The material crammed in the book is so various and the amount of fiction so huge that everyone will find something suiting his/her taste. And that's exactly what a good anthology is supposed to provide.

You can glory in the complete review at
realthog: (Jim's bear pic)

.  .  . and this time in the November 24 issue of the online magazine The Hub (available for download at It's a fairly short review -- just a few paras -- but exceptionally positive, concluding:

This is quite possibly the most important and most interesting collection in the oft-maligned fantasy genre to be published this year. Buy it.

Sort of makes me want to do so! Major congrats to all the anthology's contributors!

realthog: (Default)

 A long review by David Hebblethwaite of my anthology New Writings in the Fantastic (Pendragon Press) has appeared in the webzine Serendipity at The conclusion reads:

It struck me while I was reading New Writings in the Fantastic that an anthology is very much a personal vision, even though it's built from the work of many hands (I knew this implicitly already, but that didn't lessen the impact); and, arguably, the more personal that vision, the better. John Grant has succeeded in showcasing a diverse range of work and demonstrating the power of fantastic fiction; but his personal vision for the anthology is also clear, and the book is all the more valuable for that.

The review as a whole makes excellent reading. In fact, I think I may have to go and read it again right away . . .

realthog: (Default)
I'm still at that horrible stage of feeling lousy but not knowing if this is going to degenerate into an all-out flu attack. Nonetheless, a slave to my own vanity, I have dragged myself -- dragged myself, I say -- dragged myself through winter's glacial cold and its howling winds, fearful as I am of wild predators and (get on with it -- Ed) ... dragged myself to the keyboard in order to be able to brag about my review in the BBC's Focus magazine.

The book of mine that's being reviewed is Corrupted Science: Fraud, Ideology & Politics in Science (, which has just been published (November 1) in this country, although it came out in the UK about a month earlier. (In this it matches my anthology New Writings in the Fantastic, which was launched at UK Fantasycon about a month before its hypothetical launch at World Fantasycon last weekend.)

Here's an extract from Focus's review of Corrupted Science:

... this astonishingly comprehensive book ... Grant could have done
what the likes of Richard Dawkins do and focused on the usual
suspects, like those claiming to have found ways of communicating
with the dead. Instead, he has pulled together a vast array of
evidence to show that mainstream scientists are more prone to human
failings than some would like us to think. Corrupted Science makes
for salutary but gripping reading.

As the book's UK publicist gleefully pointed out to all and sundry, Corrupted Science was the only title to get a five-star ranking in that issue of the mag.

So far I've heard nothing whatsoever about there being any publicity at all on this side of the pond. This startles me, since a major chapter at the end of the book concerns itself with the corruption of science by the current Republican Administration, and the US is already well into its pre-election frenzy: relevant and controversial, or what? I suspect the publicist for the US distributor hasn't actually looked at Corrupted Science but instead has gone by the distributor's catalogue blurb, which (again done without sight of the text -- indeed, composed before I'd even finished writing) portrays the book as something rather jolly you might want to keep in your bathroom.

March 2013

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