Wednesday, 31 March 2010

We went to the World Horror Convention...


Wheee! Smutwriters go to the seaside! This is the view from the window of our hotel, where the World Horror Convention 2010 was being held. If I was to have turned round 180 degrees and taken another photo, you would have been able to see the hotel's historic features (and stains), plus more bald men with grey beards than you could shake a stick at. Nice friendly ones though. I spoke briefly to Tim Lebbon.
:-)

Here's one who isn't bald: it's Neil Gaiman, who was a surprise guest and hot off the plane from Moscow.


The focus of the convention was literary horror - there weren't any people in costumes or whatever. There were loads of panels covering subjects like "How to get an agent" and "Are zombies the new vampires?" There was an art show downstairs.There were bars open until 2am (hence a perilous lack of sleep). And of course there were authors doing readings of their work.


This one looks like she's enjoying herself, whoever she is...


Oh yes - I even got a couple of chances to get out and look around Brighton. Here's the Pavilion (which used to be a royal palace). The interior decoration has to be seen to be believed! Brighton Pier at night, btw, was a markedly unsettling experience. You've got the glaring lights of the carnival shows and cheesy pop music on one side, while from the other comes the noise of the distinctly hungry-sounding sea. The pier seems to hover in pitch-blackness, and below your feet the wooden boards sag rottenly in places. I don't think I've felt so irrationally nervous in years.

(L to R: Me, Olivia Knight, Mathilde Madden, Kristina Lloyd).

Oh yeah, the public reading made me pretty damn nervous too: it was my first time so I had virgin's jitters. Poor Olivia had to bear the brunt of me trying to second guess what the audience would want (How scary? How rude? How long?). But once I was up there reading out loud, I loved it. Our late-night audience stuck it out with us for two hours, despite being given a chance to escape halfway through, and they were appreciative and friendly. The four of us read two excerpts each. I did a bit from my short stories The Red Thread (Minotaur sex) and Montague's Last Ride (corpsy undead sex). Yes, all the way through to the icky and thoroughly offensive ending!

So, a thoroughly enjoyable weekend. But I fell asleep sat on the floor of the train on the way home...


P.S: Big thanks to Charlotte, our official photographer!

10 comments:

Jo said...

That's ok!

Looks fab. Thanks for the photo!

Craig Sorensen said...

Awesome! Sounds like a great time was had by all...

kristina lloyd said...

Ah, it was a lot of fun! Great write up and pics. I wish I could have Olivia Knight sitting on a throne by my side and sniggering at the dirty bits every time I did a reading.

When we were discussing our excerpts and working out the running order in the bar beforehand, it was declared that I was 'between a dildo and a dead man'.

How often does that happen in life?

kristina lloyd said...

Actually, Janine. Don't answer that.

Erobintica said...

Sounds like the setting for a story! Oh, and it was a good thing I wasn't sipping my tea at the moment I read Kristina's "between a dildo and a dead man" comment or I'd be panicking about a ruined laptop!

Darkwriter said...

As someone who was both at the conference and the reading I would like to say what a wonderful session you all put on. As one of the 'red shirts' there I had to be very selective of which panels/readings/parties etc that I wanted to attend. I'm pleased I made it to yours.

Thank you.

Nikki Magennis said...

Wish I could have been there! Sounds wonderful. (And well done for reading, too, that must be pretty nerve-wracking.)

Jeremy Edwards said...

Thanks so much for the report and the pictures! I have nothing to do with the horror-literature biz, but I'm tempted to throw a "conference" just to get you folks here. : )

Janine Ashbless said...

Thank you everyone, for your good wishes!

Krisina, you beat me to it...

Darkwriter - I really am delighted to have pleased you and those who chose to come listen to us. We were scheduled up against both a showing of Ghostwatch with commentary by the director, AND the Phantom Gaslight Music Hall revue, so it's a miracle anyone noticed us at all!
:-)
We had a really good time doing the reading, and talking to people afterward.

And Jeremy, yes you should. Go on. I'd show: I'm hooked on the adrenalin rush now!

Emerald said...

Great picture of you guys!

"I don't think I've felt so irrationally nervous in years."

Heh...that seems enviable to me, actually. :/ In conversation I might replace the word "years" with "hours," and it might fit....

Anyway, congratulations on your reading! Ha, I'm so with you Jeremy—please feel free to invite me to even though I don't even read much less write horror. I could be some kind of staff member in charge of handling name tages or something. :)

Thanks for sharing, Janine!