Three?! Really!?! Cool!!! The 2009 Aurora Award nominees have been announced, and this year I have three of my works on the final ballot. Impossibilia, my first collection, is on the ballot under the "Best Long-Form Work in English." Another vote of support for Impossibilia comes in the form of having its lead story, "Bouquet of Flowers in a Vase, by van Gogh" making it onto the ballot as well under "Best Short-Form Work in English," a position it shares with my third nomination, my story "Doorways," which appeared in Postscripts #17.
I wrote earlier about the launch for my collection Impossibilia hosted by BakkaPhoenix in Toronto back in February. The launch was a great success with a great turnout. Thanks to Chris Szego and the staff at Bakka for their support. Here's a slide show of photos from the launch.
I wrote earlier how fellow writer, Mark Leslie, aka Mark Lefebvre, was kind enough to host a launch for my collection Impossibilia at Titles Bookstore on the McMaster University campus on March 4. Mark did a great job of promoting and hosting the launch, and it was a very enjoyable outing for me. One of the coolest things that came out of the launch was the result of a promotion idea that Mark came up with. The Titles store at McMaster has one of only three Espresso Book Machines in Canada. These are print-on-demand machines that lets Mark produce course work, text books, out of print books etc., on an on-demand basis, thus reducing ordering, shipping and inventory costs for the store.
Mark suggested that we print a "little chap book" as a promotional item to give away during the launch. The "little chap book" became a full-blown 116-page "Official Movie Companion Book" to the upcoming indie horror film "By Her Hand, She Draws You Down" (see my earlier blog entries about the movie here, here, and here). Mark writes about the launch and the book on his blog here.
The movie companion book is way cool, with the movie poster for the cover (see right) and the following table of contents: 1. “By Her Hand, She Draws You Down”: The Original Story 2. Writing the Story: Where Ideas Come From (and Where They Go) 3. Making the Movie: Notes from the Director, Producer, and Cast 4. From Story to Movie: The Storyboard Script 5. On the Set: Photos from the Shoot 6. Pictures from a Picture: Cath’s Sketches 7. People from a Picture: The Movie Credits 8. Talking to a Writer: An Interview with Douglas Smith 9. Who We Are: Biographies If you're interested, you can order your own copy of both Impossibilia and the "By Her Hand..." Movie Companion book from my store.
Here are some shots from the filming of the indie horror film "By Her Hand, She Draws You Down," directed by Anthony G. Sumner, which is based on my short story of that name. For earlier posts, see here and here. The film was shot at various locations along the New Jersey coast. Here's how producer Alan Rowe Kelly describes the selection of the locations and the shooting...
Here's more cool stuff from the upcoming indie movie based on my short story, "By Her Hand, She Draws You Down." The story focuses on a young artist, Cath, and her struggle with a strange hunger that can only be fed by drawing the life force from the subjects that she sketches. In the story, Cath "feeds" directly from the sketches she does. In the movie, Anthony Sumner adds a wonderful visual aspect to this by having the sketches change after Cath feeds from them. Here's a short movie made up of the "after" sketches that were used in the actual movie.
In his Case Notes review column in the latest issue of the fine UK magazine, Black Static, Peter Tennant gives my first collection, Impossibilia, a great review, at the same time showing that he, like me, is a fan of the Boss: "A book that ably demonstrates what Smith is capable of as a writer, added to which, anyone who references Springsteen songs in their titles is going to get the thumbs up from me."
And on the lead story, "A Bouquet of Flowers in a Vase, by Van Gogh": "A clever story and a moving one, with the character of the two leads put over well, and the ghosts that haunt them brought to effective life on the page. Smith is adept at tying together the different plot strands and filling in people’s back story in a way that doesn’t interrupt the narrative flow."
And on the closing story "Going Down to Lucky Town": "Smith takes a simple idea and finds potential that many other writers would have overlooked in favour of some easier option. At the story’s heart is the relationship between father and daughter, and the things they do to make this work, rendered with a singular care and tenderness, the appreciation that sometimes we muck up without meaning to and that sacrifices are required."
Satruday February 28 is the last day that you can submit nominations for both the 2009 Aurora Awards for your favourite works of Canadian speculative fiction and for the international Hugo Awards. See my earlier post for how to nominate for the Auroras, how to find the list of eligible Canadian works, and to see my own list of 2008 eligible works. See my other earlier post for how to nominate for the Hugos.
Help support Canadian speculative writing! Nominate a Canadian work for the Auroras and the Hugos!
Fellow writer, Mark Leslie, will be hosting a launch for my collection, Impossibilia, at Titles, the McMaster University bookstore, on Wednesday, March 4, 2009 from noon to 2:00 pm. I hope that if you're in the Hamilton area that you'll be able to drop in at the launch. I'll be doing a reading, signing copies, and providing a very cool free give-away with every copy purchased (hint: the freebie item is connected to this project). You can read more about Impossibilia including reviews and excerpts here. If you're a Facebook user, here's a link to the event. See below for directions to the bookstore. Hope to see you there!