As many of you will know, this weekend was World Fantasy Con, held at the Hilton Hotel Brighton. I went along on the Friday and Saturday and met lots of jolly nice people who all seemed to be politely ignoring the fact that I was rather more than three sheets to the wind on both days.
I spent most of Friday in the bar, where to begin with I happened to be standing next to Nathan Long, of whose work I am a big fan, particularly his Blackhearts novels. Paul Wiseall of J-For-Jetpack later introduced me to Daniel Polansky, whose Low Town novels are currently at the top of my to-read list, and who I was relieved to discover feels much the same as I do about this whole social media malarkey. Later on, as I waited in the bar, none other than Muriel Gray came and sat next to me. Go figure.
After a bit of a wander I got to meet Stephane and Alain who are the chaps behind Bragellone, who will be producing the French translation of Herald sometime next year. And marvellous fellas they are too.
At the various publisher dos I hooked up with a number of people I’d only heard about or communicated with online. These included Stefan Fergus and Doug Smith who have both said very nice things about my books, and who were both as nice in person as they are on the interwebz. I may also have pre-emptively wandered into the Gollancz do, where various people looked at me funny and Gill Redfearn gave me a well-deserved telling off (just for the record I am now terrified of her).
Later in the evening my editor John Wordsworth and I retired to the bar once more where we sat down and chewed the fat with Tim Lebbon, Christopher Golden and James Moore until getting on for 2am. We chatted about all sorts, from comics to dodgy agents, and for the record I’m still convinced I’m right about the Dredd movie and the US/UK divide between Batman and Superman (don’t ask).
Okay, so on the Saturday I didn’t so much attend the con as go and watch the rugby then rock up for the after parties, but I was more than there in spirit. Firstly was my agent John Jarrold’s soiree where I got to chat with Dave Bradley of SFX along with his lovely wife. I also managed to bore Mark C Newton stiff and was suitably gushing towards John Gwynne after his Gemmell Award win on Thursday.
Then it was on to the Headline do in the Globe pub just around the corner from the main venue. Things were getting a bit fuzzy around the edges by then, so simultaneous apologies and hellos should go to Mathilda from Head of Zeus, the legendary Tad Williams (who I managed to collar on the doorstep of the pub in extreme high winds), publisher-sis Jen Williams and Jared Shurin of Pornokitsch who I forced to be in a picture with me, whether he wanted to or not. Special mention should also go to Ben Willis, one of the tireless publicity guys at Headline, for putting all the promotional cover prints of my books where no one could see them. I don’t think I mentioned it to him once.
All-in-all it was a bloody good weekend, and if I’ve forgotten to mention anyone then I’m sorry, but then I was very, very drunk.