Saturday, 10 July 2010

It’s all going on at!

Notwithstanding the fact that the title of this post sounds like an advert for a carpet warehouse (broadcast on one of those appalling local radio stations that your parents would tune into when you were young) it really is all happening over there. Seriously, I turn my back for five minutes...

What I love about the following press releases is that they give an impression of a website where totally different ideas are thrown into the mix and left to see how they get on with each other. Seriously, check this first press release out... kicks of a month-long celebration of Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy on July 6th!

New York, NY: Tuesday, July 6, 2010: Today kicks off its month long celebration of all things paranormal romance and urban fantasy, featuring giveaways, original fiction, original artwork, editorial pieces, and blog posts from the biggest names in both genres. has previously held very well received month-long celebrations of themed topics such as Steampunk and Cthulhu and encourages conversations about some of the most interesting and beloved topics in popular culture today, such as the rapidly growing categories of paranormal romance and urban fantasy.

While some attribute the popularity of paranormal romance and urban fantasy to the coming of age of people raised on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Dark Shadows, and The X-Files, for others, it is the allure of the forbidden that draws people in—the fascination with the kind of relationship that can exist between the dead, the immortal, or the magic-worker on one side—and the human on the other.

Melissa Ann Singer, Senior Editor at Tor Books, who is coordinating this month’s lineup for, points to the special crossover appeal of these genres: “Paranormal romance and urban fantasy have roots in horror fiction and magical realism, in mystery and suspense, and in romance and pulp fiction. Accustomed to crossing boundaries, paranormal romance and urban fantasy novels can be found in a number of sections in the bookstore, including romance, science fiction, fantasy, general fiction, mystery, and on the teen/young reader shelves. Not to mention in film, on television, and in comics and graphic novels. “

Authors such as New York Times bestselling author Marjorie M. Liu, author of the Dirk & Steele and Hunter Kiss series, also point to the strong female characters in these genres as a major source of their popularity, explaining that “supernatural romance and fantasy are often about female empowerment. Shelters for abused women often distribute romance novels, and there's a reason for it. Heroines who kill demons and hunt vampires –they're tough chicks."
Here is a sampling of just some of the great authors and promotions you will find at in July:

- Original fiction contributors will include Deb Coates, AM Dellamonica, Shiloh Walker, C.T. Adams, S.J. Day, and Cathy Clamp

- All original fiction will also feature original artwork by artists such as Gordon Crabb, Dave Palumbo, and Jason Chan—and artists such as Dan Dos Santos and Anne Cainwill be interviewed and contribute blog posts respectively

- Authors such as Carole Nelson Douglas, Jeanne Stein, and Laura Anne Gilman will feature reprints of their work

- Giveaways: Once a week, visitors will have the chance to win special giveaways including books and other author related merchandise

- Industry big mouths, artists, authors, and editors will be discussing topics ranging from the definitions of urban fantasy and paranormal romance and recommendations of what to read in both genres, to werewolves , shape-changers from ages past, technology and magic, heroes in science fiction and fantasy TV shows and films, and much more

- Insight into the growing romance gaming market from PassionFruit Games, who produced Tiger Eye: Curse of the Riddle Box, the first game based on a paranormal romance novel and released into the American market, and currently #2 on the MAC bestseller list at Big Fish

- A partial list of bloggers (with more signing up each day) will include: LA Banks, Shannon Delaney, AM Dellamonica, Deb Coates, Shiloh Walker, J.A. Pitts, Carolyn Crane, Jill Miles, Carole Nelson Douglas, Carrie Vaughan, Cathy Clamp, Anne Elizabeth, Suzanne Sizemore, L.J. McDonald , Kate Perry, Caridad Pinero, Carolyn Jewel , Anne Cain, Marjorie M. Liu, Kelley Armstrong, Jo Walton, Brit Mandelo, Heather Massey, Alex Brown, and Juliana Wiess-Roessler

- An editorial roundtable moderated by Tor editor Melissa Ann Singer, featuring some of the biggest editors in Paranormal Romance and Urban fantasy including Chris Keesler, Deb Werksman, Heather Osborn, and Alicia Condon

- Editorial coverage of the different media platforms across which urban fantasy and paranormal romanceand paranormal romance are translating, including video games, graphic novels, comics, and manga

- Former Galleycat Editor and publishing insider Ron Hogan will be conducting several author interviews and writing a “Paranormal Romance from a Guy’s Point of View” post

Join for the month of July to find out more about the secret side of the world in which we live, a world we might just share with vampires, witches, elves, demons, tattoos that come to life, werewolves, and other creatures that inhabit urban fantasy and paranormal romance novels.

It looks like there’s going to be some interesting stuff going on for fans as well as people like me who might enjoy watching werewolves fight but just don’t get the appeal of reading about the same kind of emo relationship, between main characters, over and over again in different books. I’ll be checking out Ron Hogan’s post to see what he has to say, maybe I’ll get me a new perspective on the whole thing.

So it’s all lovey dovey and vulnerable (yet tough and empowered at the same time) over at Well, kind of. There’s also this going on at the same time. From the email…

Calling all Malaz fans!! In a few minutes, will launch the epic fantasy re-read of the novels by Steven Erikson and Ian C. Esslemont’s in their co-created Malazan Empire world. Modeled after Leigh Butler’s fabulous Wheel of Time re-read, capable bloggers and fantasy critics Bill Capossere and Amanda Rutter ( will reintroduce Whiskeyjack, Anomander Rake, Quick Ben, Kalam Mekhar, Fiddler, Iskaral Pust, and all the other great characters from this dark and complex fantasy world, a few chapters at a time. And with the completion of each book in the re-read, Steven Erikson and Ian C. Esslemont will weigh in with their reactions to the posts, comments, ideas, and theories of the fans and bloggers.

The final installment in Steven Erikson’s New York Times bestselling series “The Malazan Book of the Fallen,” The Crippled God, will be released by Tor Books on February 15, 2011.

The first posts and chapters are up on are up now:

This looks like another feature that I’m going to be keeping an eye on, especially as both ‘Return of the Crimson Guard’ and ‘Dust of Dreams’ are sat on the shelf giving me puppy dog eyes as I’ve neglected them for so long. As much as I’ve enjoyed these books, I’ve also found the ‘Malazan Book of the Fallen’ to be a tough series to get back into once I dropped out of it. I do want to catch up though and at times like this it’s sometimes best to let someone else do all the legwork for you :o) Good luck Bill and Amanda!

And if all that wasn’t enough, have also got a whole load of great looking content on the forthcoming ‘The Way of Kings’ including audio excerpts, a tour schedule for September and interviews with Brandon Sanderson. You have to register on the site for the audio excerpts but that’s not exactly a hardship is it? ;o)

Not a bad little lot to have a read through is it? :o)

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