Tag Archives: Events

Release Day: Piercing the Vale

Today is the official release day for Fox Pocket no. 8 Piercing the Vale.

Piercing the Vale is a collection of stories crossing the veil of death and venturing into the worlds of the fae.

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Contents: Alasdair Stuart – Connected, Alec McQuay – All and Nothing, Jonathan Ward  – A Tale of Days Long Gone, Paul Starkey – Just Another Breakfast, Jennifer Williams – The Ghost Trap, Darren Goldsmith – Soul Punch, Ben Stewart – A Curious Tale of Life and Death, Tony Lane – Tentacles in Town, Rahne Sinclair – The Captain, Asher Wismer – Solid Glass, Chloe Yates – Intimacy, Colin Sinclair – Claudia, Tracy Fahey – The Cillini, Jenny Barber – Dead Women’s Tales, Craig Leyenaar – all Fun and Games, Jo Johnson Smith – For My Next Trick, Carol Borden – The Lost City of Osiris, Steven Poore – Take me with you

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We are close to the end of the series now, with The Evil Genius Guide and Reflections coming out this summer, which will bring us to a total of 158 flash and short fiction stories and poems, over ten pocket sized volumes.

You can view who is in what title and some of their biographies here.

In order to celebrate we are working with DMU Bookshop on the Newarke in Leicester to bring you a Pocket Party on Thursday 25th August.

More information to follow but we can reveal there will be a special edition of the Super Relaxed Fantasy Club hosted by Den Patrick and Jen Williams, who both appear in the Fox Pocket series.

African Monsters Launch & Other News

We are delighted to announce that an official launch party for African Monsters will be taking place on 3rd March at London Forbidden Planet, after which we will head off to the pub for more celebrating.

A number of the authors and artists will be attending along with Aunty Fox and both editors of the book. We will have badges identifying us just in case you haven’t met us before.

https://forbiddenplanet.com/events/2016/03/03/african-monsters-forbidden-planet/

The format will be relaxed and casual with a quick introduction then mingling and signing of books. If you would like to ensure a book is waiting for you in the signing area they are available to pre order on the Forbidden Planet website.

We hope to see lots of you there. It’s our first London launch and we are all very excited.

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In other news we are co hosting another Fox Bites with DMU Bookshop Leicester. At ‘Unromantic Tales’ on 11th Feb local writers will be reading short stories and excerpts that have nothing at all to do with romance and Valentines day. There may be something of a horror leaning. These are totally free events with drinks and nibbles, so do come along, enjoy some readings and support a local bookstore if you can.

For more information on this and other Fox Bites mini reading events please join the facebook group.

The last bit of news for now is that Fox Spirit are the Creative Leicestershire featured business this month. Creative Leicestershire are a local organisation supporting small creative businesses and helping bring them together. If you are in the region and are building a business in a creative industry it’s worth checking them out for opportunities for support and advice.

 

FantasyCon 2015

Books and Fox Field Bag packed we headed off to Nottingham and the East Midlands Conference Centre for another FantasyCon.

The Event

I arrived on the Saturday morning just as the Friday nighters were emerging for breakfast and in good time to drop some books off with Pendragon Press who I owe a huge thanks to for hosting homeless books, along with Alchemy for taking some copies of Wicked Women, which two of their editors had done under FS. I then headed to my first panel Monster Mash Up with Carrie Buchanan, Cassandra Khaw, Tim Lebbon, Will Macmillan Jones and Moderated by Jon Oliver who had karaoke throat. There was an examination of popular monsters, consideration as to whether there is anything new or we are just looking now to the very old, whether the real monsters are modern politicians, serial killers or every day scumbags and some thoughtful comments on the need for sensitivity when delving into other cultures for exciting new monsters.

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In the afternoon I moderated a panel on Marketing ‘Turn up the volume’ with Sophie Calder, Jo Fletcher, Matt Shaw, Graeme Reynolds and Danie Ware, which started with a fire alarm. Sadly we lost 15 minutes of what was a really interesting panel which meant I only asked about half my questions and the audience were cut a little short to. There were some excellent insights about how publishing has changed in terms of online presence and also in store behaviour, the need for authors to be willing to do a lot themselves and what publishers can offer in terms of guidance and support. In the audience questions we touched on where writers can go for support and advice, some of the well established writing groups that can offer advice, regional writing communities or organisations that offer courses and advice. Many courses run by Creative Leicestershire are completely free.

I thoroughly enjoyed participating in both and I hope everyone else enjoyed them too. A warning to future panel planners, if you put Carrie and I together again and please do, we may continue to riff on the most tasteless news items we can find. 😉

After that I was free to attend some panels which I did and I have to say the standard this year was excellent. Well done to Richard Webb for a huge amount of work and thought!

The Non Humans panels was entertaining and interested and I particularly enjoyed Ren going super dark about AI and people and love and Adrian and Ren discussing ethics and science. Some interesting thoughts generally on what makes something human and writing the alien from all the panel members which included Janet Edwards and Deborah Install and some very nice one liners from Gareth Powell.

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The screenwriting panel proved fascinating even as a non screen writer Stephen Volk, Jason Arnopp, Ellen Gallagher, Stephen Gallagher and Gavin Williams were lead through a fascinating discussion by Catherine Hill. Ellen’s passion and knowledge were a stand out for me in that panel.

On Sunday I attended the Audio panel lead by the incomparable Alasdair Stuart and featuring Chris Barnes, James Goss and Emma Newman who covered getting into it in the first place (various kinds of accident seem to feature heavily), what it involves, why they love it and numerous other things including a number of wonderful resources that had us all scribbling or typing away. A very funny, insightful and smart panel and perfect for the more general audience.

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It sounds as though readings, launches and other things all went well, several of our writers were involved over the weekend and I was glad to hear Jo Thomas had a good and well attended panel, Ruth Booth’s readings, including her Winter Tales poem were well recieved, Chloe rocked the Poetry Slam, Steve Poore had a good launch with his title for Kristell Ink and I hope everything went well for the everyone else. While we were there we got some stock signed and even sold a few books.

Of course one of the great joys of any convention is seeing old friends, making new ones, finally meeting people you’ve known online for ages, talking to people who actually understand what you are saying and get the references and are all excited about the same things! Learning new things, having better brains than yours to pick for advice and being around so many incredible inspiring people. The collective levels of creativity at FantasyCon are mind blowing.

The whole event was well organised, ran smoothly and the teams behind it and running it all on the ground did an amazing job. The panelists were wonderful and I heard good things from everyone who attended panels. A huge thanks to the FantasyCon team and good luck to the 2016 FCon the T’sea team!

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The Awards

We were on three shortlists Best Short Story for Gaie Sebold’s story in Wicked Women, Best Fantasy Novel with Breed by K.T. Davies and Best Indie Press for the second year running. I thought in spite of very stiff competition Breed was in with a chance so was pretty nervous.

Juliet McKenna did a sterling job, noting the loss of Graham Joyce which got a strong and emotional response from the community and neatly rounding up the sad puppies saga and moving on from it very nicely indeed. There was a standing ovation when Juliet was very deservingly awarded the Karl Edward Wagner Award.

It seemed to be a night for people being caught off guard and speechless. Literally, most of the winners had prepared nothing! Those that had sometimes did so on the back of a menu as a just in case. I think it was all the lovelier for it. I thoroughly enjoyed the delighted and flabberghasted responses of people unused to accepting awards, of which somehow I found myself one!

Breed lost to the marvellous Frances Harding who is a worthy winner so huge congratulations to Francis. Best Short went to Emma Newman which again is a great winner and I am delighted! But Fox Spirit Books did get Best Indie Press and I was shaking so much with shock of it I had to hold the podium with both hands while I stumbled out something about the skulk being an amazing group to wok with and a wonderful community and a shout out to Alasdair Stuart for being integral in conning me into it in the first place. Also thanks to the judges for ploughing through a stack of material on usb sticks (we published 18 titles in 2014, I don’t know how).

If you will all indulge me I will now go on to repeat my sentiments a little more coherently:

Fox Spirit is barely over three years old, we have over 30 titles out and have worked with a huge number of incredible writers and artists in that time. I am deeply proud of everything we have done both in terms of books and the community the Skulk have built for themselves through shared TOC’s and events like Fcon. It is an honour to help these stories get out there and to watch you all support and encourage each other.

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I want to say as well that behind the scenes Daz (our copy editor), Gav (our formatter) and Vince who picks up a lot of layouts and things last minute, do a tremendous amount to help make FS work. I would be lost, utterly without their hard work and support. There are many others who help at various times in various ways and I am utterly grateful to them too.

Alasdair Stuart, Kate Laity and Steven Savile were all instrumental in the great small press con job, for which I love them all the more.

In the last year my business partner and also Mr Fox have provided a huge amount of support in a variety of ways to help keep FS going strong.

Our readers, reviewers, retweeters, likers, sharers etc are amazing and we value you all and everyone in the BFS who nominated, voted, judged on any award (I’ve done it, it’s hard!) you are all hugely important to us and thank you.

So 2016 is another busy year and this one isn’t over, so I better get back to work but this lovely wooden thing is truly a credit to the whole skulk!

IMG_1624A full list of the Winners for this year can be found here. A wonderful crowd I am honoured to have been part of!

 

Fantasy Con gets Foxy

In addition to masses of skulk members being attendees and panelists and having some shortlisters at this years FantasyCon, Aunty Fox is on a couple of panels.

Saturday

Room: Suite 1
11.00am Monster Mash-Up: Were-vamp-zomb-zilla…With Wings!
Moderator: Jon Oliver
Panelists: Carrie Buchanan, Cassandra Khaw, Tim Lebbon, Will Macmillan Jones, Adele Wearing

Room: Suite 2
2.00pm Turn Up the Volumes: Marketing & Selling Books
Moderator: Adele Wearing
Panelists: Sophie Calder, Jo Fletcher, Graeme Reynolds, Matt Shaw, Danie Ware

Please pop along and ask your questions or just find me to say hi.

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Fox Bites, First Bite

We had our first ‘open mic’ reading event at Leicester’s Cafe Malveen last Saturday and I think we are calling that a success! The Cafe turned over enough in coffee and cake to invite us back and six local authors read for five minutes from six very different books.

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Fox Bites isn’t aimed at just Fox Spirit writers, it’s aimed at all the local writers who want to practice reading or try a piece on a live audience, a nice friendly audience of people who love books.

It ran smoothly with three readings, a five minute coffee break and three more readings. The readings were all well delivered and warmly received and in between there was a pleasant babble of conversation, people catching up with each other and meeting other local writers/readers.

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We will be providing the footage of the readings to the readers for distribution on their own sites. We’ve also put together a facebook group where we will post details of readers and their stories each month.

If you would like to be at the next Leicester Fox Bites or would like to bring Fox Bites to your city please contact me at adele@ foxspirit.co.uk for information.

Reaching for Stars

It’s already February! How did that happen?

We are in the midst of getting books out, particularly ‘The Stars Seem so Far Away’ the re release of ‘Dreambook’ and ‘Emily Nation’ three very different and very awesome titles to kick off 2015.

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We also have events to plan. We are going to be very active locally organising live reading sessions and panels. The Skulk will be in force at this years Edge.Lit having a joint event with Boo Books (Working title Fox Boo).

…and in case all that wasn’t enough we will shortly be launching our new Combat Sports imprint FoxGloves which we are aiming to Kickstart this summer.

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Finally, because we never take a breath here in the fox den, we will also be bringing you news of Fennec our childrens imprint soon along with developments under our HEMA idenity Vulpes. It’s a busy time for the whole skulk so please follow us on twitter and facebook and visit the site regularly or even better, sign up for the newsletter so you don’t miss anything.

And while you wait for our new titles, we have plenty to entertain you already out there!

Leicester Comic Con

We were at the first Leicester Comic Con on Saturday and it was a huge success. Traders took over the ground floor of the newly refurbed Silver Arcade while Alasdair Stuart hosted guest speakers on the top floor.

The team of Yellow Shirts (some of which were  incognito) did an amazing job of taking care of attendees and traders, from helping to unload first thing to ensuring water was available, doing mercy runs for coffee and food and generally making sure they were visible and available. I had the great pleasure of being in charge of recruiting and running the vols and I am very proud of them all. Really once things got going I was practically superfluous.

I had FS author and editor Kate Laity and kidnapped young person (who belongs to a friend) Charlie to assist me on the FS Stall, which looked fantastic with the gorgeous books and some extra treats in the form of prints and t shirts by FS illustrator Kieran Walsh.

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We sold Extricate to Catwoman which seemed fitting, hung out with a Storm Trooper, hugged lots of people we know, including passing FS writers Peter Allison, Ren Warom (with spawn), Alasdair Stuart and Hardeep Sangha and chatted to lots of new and lovely people. We sold plenty of books and other things, all the cake got eaten and the atmosphere was wonderful. Couldn’t have asked for a better day.

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Well done Nathan Leverton, Gen and team yellow shirt.

 

Out in the world

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Aunty Fox is going to be out and about a bit in the coming months.

First up this Saturday I will be resplendent in a yellow t shirt for Leicester Comic Con at Silver arcade.

There will be a Fox Spirit table which I have helpers for in case I have to run off and deal with volunteer things. Kate Laity will be in attendance and a few other skulk members will be dropping by and signing stuff so if you are in the area come and say hi and check out the first Leicester Comic Con in all its awesome.

In July I am at Harrogate, technically this is a holiday, I don’t work it, but I am always happy to see people so if you spot me come and say hello.

Next up is NineWorlds Geek Fest in August where I will be easily found behind the Indie books table. Small press and self pub folks can get more information about having their books on the table from allofthebooks@nineworlds.co.uk

We will only be displaying small numbers of books from each seller at any given time but are there for three days so stash extra stock in your room and come and replenish the table later. 10% of all sales will go to NineWorlds charity partner. Come by and see your Aunty Fox and peruse the small press offerings.

Finally I will be attending FantasyCon, I am on no panels this year and have not booked a table or a launch, I will be in the bar having a lovely time. come and hang out with the skulk.

There will no doubt be other small events and things I go to at short notice and I know lots of FS writers and artists are out and about at other things this year. Check out the events page for the ones I know about.

 

 

Futura & Edge

Saturday saw the first Futura event at the Lighthouse in Wolverhampton. The venue is housed within the old Chubb lock factory and is gorgeous. It’s a triangular shaped building with a bright, glass roofed courtyard. I should have taken pictures, but umm, didn’t.

As it’s both Futura’s first year and Alex Davis’ first West Mids event it was quiet, but the audience was more than happy to join in discussions leading to panels that were pretty interactive. I was invited as a speaker. Some of you may have seen me on panels in the past but always in the role of moderator, it was lovely to be an actual proper panelist for the first time. I had great fun chatting with my fellow panelists and other attendees about whether SF is main stream, the life of a small publisher and where SF ends as a genre.

The event was well run, although next year the venue might want to invest in extra staff at the coffee shop to keep things moving more briskly.

I hope I will be invited back next year as i’d certainly love to do it again, if not i’ll pop it in my diary for a visit anyway.

Next up for us is Edge.Lit in Derby, where Fox Spirit will be launching Noir Carnival with wine, cake and badges. We will have the editor and a couple of Noir Carnival writers in attendance as well as many of the other skulk members who will be happy to sign things. I will have a few copies of the various books with me and in partnership with CyberWitch we will be making the ebooks available on site, on the day too. The launch will take place at lunch time and there will be wine and cake provided so please drop in and see us!

 

Alt.Fiction does Everybody’s Reading

In 2013, provisionally the third weekend of May  Alt.Fiction will once again bring the proud purveyors and fans of genre fiction to Leicester. Under the supervision of Writing East Midlands the 2013 event will be run by Fox Spirit’s Adele Wearing and the omnipresent (at last years) Alasdair Stuart of Pseudopod and also ALL THE THINGS in geekdom. Having helped out so much on the weekend last year Al is now fully in place as co-cheese.

However if you really can’t wait for next year, or you’ve never done alt.fiction and want to test whether it’s for you before shelling out on tickets, we are having a small taster session as part of Leicester’s ‘Everybody’s Reading’ festival.

The event is on Saturday 6th October from 12:30 – 4pm at Leicester Central Library on Bishop Street. Nearest car park is probably the Newarke Street multi story and Bishop Street runs down one side of Town Hall Square so if you are new to Leicester it’s not too hard to find.

The event will feature a panel with Kim Lakin-Smith, Joseph D’Lacey, Nicola Valentine and Damien Seaman talking about publishing, their various experiences and taking questions. If there is time we may also discuss favourite and important titles in genre fiction, kicking off at 12:45 until 1:45.

After the panel Kim and Joe are offering 45 minute workshops, these are ideal for new writers honing their craft or people wanting to address particular concerns and are always very popular at our events. 2pm – 2:45pm

After the workshops, there will be some 10-15  minute readings and a chance to chat before we close. 3pm – 4pm

The authors have been invited to bring books to sell and sign so some time will be allowed for that, Damien’s novel ‘The Killing of Emma Gross’ is an ebook, so if you are a fan he can always sign your kindle.

This event is totally free and will be a really good friendly opportunity to get a feel for the sort of things that happen at our main weekender so do come along and bring your friends. There will even be free baked goods (a fine altfiction tradition is the baking table).

This was team Hagelrat at alt.fiction 2012 in March.