Still Life & Ghosts: final covers

Here they are – the final front cover images for the two new books from Spectral, due to be launched at this year’s World Fantasy Convention on Saturday, November 2nd, 2013, between 2pm and 3pm at the Brighton Hilton Metropole, Brighton, UK.  Not only will Tim Lebbon and Paul Kane be there to sign the books, but also artists Edward Miller (Les Edwards) and Jim Burns as well, plus Nancy Kilpatrick (Power of the Blood World series) too, who wrote the introduction to Ghosts. 

You can preorder both titles now – whether you’re attending WFC or not. There are two price points: one WITH postage included (for those not attending) and the other WITHOUT. If you ARE coming to the Convention, you can just pick them up and get them signed.

STILL LIFE by Tim Lebbon

"Still Life" © Tim Lebbon/Spectral Press 2013. Artwork © Jim Burns 2013

“Still Life” © Tim Lebbon/Spectral Press 2013. Artwork © Jim Burns 2013

Jenni’s husband was part of the Road of Souls––his flesh swarmed by ants and pecked by rooks, bones crushed to powder by wheels of dread––and yet she still saw him in the pool.

            The incursion has been and gone, the war is over, and the enemy is in the land, remote and ambiguous.  The village outskirts are guarded by vicious beasts, making escape impossible.  The village itself is controlled by the Finks, human servants to the enemy––brutal, callous, almost untouchable. 

            Everything is less than it was before… time seems to move slower, the population is much denuded, and life itself seems to hold little purpose.  This is not living, it’s existing.

            But in a subjugated population, there is always resistance. 

            For Jenni, the happiest part of this new life is visiting the pool in the woods, seeing her dead husband within, and sharing memories of happier times.  It calms her and makes her feel alive.

            But the resistance comes to her for help. 

            And when her dead husband tells her it is time to fight, Jenni’s life is destined for a shattering change.  

“Tim Lebbon conjures up the horror of a world distorted by fear, distrust, and something unspeakable. With respectful nods to H.P Lovecraft Still Life rubs reality up against nightmares in this compact, engrossing treat.” Muriel Gray

STILL LIFE by Tim Lebbon

UK £21

EU £23.50

US & RoW $42

STILL LIFE by Tim Lebbon (World Fantasy Convention attendees only – pick up from venue)

UK £17.50

EU €21.00

US & RoW $30.00

GHOSTS by Paul Kane

"Ghosts" © Paul Kane/Spectral Press 2013. Artwork © Edward Miller 2007 - 2013.

“Ghosts” © Paul Kane/Spectral Press 2013. Artwork © Edward Miller 2007 – 2013.

They are all around us all the time. But only a few make contact, and only certain people are destined to see the Ghosts. Here, you’ll read a lonely shade’s tale… a deceased old man’s house being invaded… how one person discovers the true meaning of the Christmas spirit, while a parent struggles to come to terms with the sad loss of a child… and what happens when the ghosts of war go on the rampage, or when a monstrous wraith stalks the streets looking for revenge. Gathering together all of award-winning and bestselling author Paul Kane’s supernatural fiction, including three brand new stories–one a sequel to Charles Dickens’ ‘The Signal-Man’–and featuring an introduction from bestselling horror author Nancy Kilpatrick (Power of the Blood World series), the script of Wind Chimes introduced by its director Brad Watson (7th Dimension), plus suitably atmospheric cover art from Edward Miller, this is one collection that will haunt you forever.

GHOSTS by Paul Kane

UK £21

EU £23.50

US & RoW $42

GHOSTS by Paul Kane (World Fantasy Convention attendees only – pick up from venue)

UK £30.00

EU €21.00

US & RoW $30.00


UK £35

EU £42

US & RoW $90

PLEASE NOTE:  we apologise for the high postage rates abroad, but it’s out of our control – sorry!!

COMBINED OFFER –  (World Fantasy Convention attendees only – pick up from venue)

UK £35.00

EU €37.50

US & RoW $65.00

Hope to hear from you soon!

Pre-orders: Still Life novella by Tim Lebbon & Ghosts collection by Paul Kane

A little later than planned, due to internet issues, here’s today’s blog:

Safe Harbour by Edward Miller ©2007 - 2013. All rights reserved

Safe Harbour by Edward Miller ©2007 – 2013. All rights reserved

At the end of October/beginning of November, Spectral will be launching two books by top-class writers, Still Life by Tim Lebbon and Ghosts by Paul Kane (cover artwork by Edward Miller shown above). They will be officially launched at World Fantasy Con in Brighton, but you can preorder copies of the LIMITED (125 each) SIGNED HARDBACKS of one or both now (at a special price) so you can be sure you’ll get one. Please see Paypal buttons below for details of prices. (If paying by any other means, please contact spectralpress[AT]gmail[DOT]com for details)

The prolific Tim Lebbon is a New York Times bestselling author, whose output ranges right the way from short stories to novellas to novels, and covers the spectrum from original material through to franchises like Star Wars and onward to novelisations of films like Cabin in the Woods. His Spectral novella is an original story, and will feature cover artwork by the legendary Jim Burns, whose artistic visions have graced many a mainstream book jacket over the last few decades – watch out for the reveal as soon as the artwork is finished!

Paul Kane is also a prolific writer, and has achieved mass-market success Arrowhead trilogy, as well as critical acclaim for his books, The Hellraiser Films and their Legacy (non-fiction) and the Hellbound Hearts anthology, stories directly inspired by the Hellraiser mythos created by Clive Barker (edited in collaboration with his wife Marie O’Regan). Ghosts is a collection of all his supernatural fiction penned over the last fifteen years or so, plus a couple original to the collection. It will also feature an introduction by Canadian author/editor Nancy Kilpatrick plus, as a bonus with the hardback edition, the film script of Wind Chimes written by Paul and directed by Brad Watson (and introduced by the latter). As an extra, the book will also come with a DVD of the film so you can watch it as well!

All prices include P+P!

Still Life by Tim Lebbon (Spectral Visions IV)

UK £21

EU £23.50

US & RoW $42

Ghosts by Paul Kane (Spectral Collection I)

UK £21

EU £23.50

US & RoW $42

SPECIAL COMBINED OFFER (Still Life by Tim Lebbon [Spectral Visions IV] + Ghosts by Paul Kane [Spectral Collection I])

UK £35

EU £42

US & RoW $90

PLEASE NOTE:  we apologise for the high postage rates abroad, but it’s out of our control – sorry!!

Looking forward to hearing from you!

FantasyCon 2012: A spectacular success

It has to be said that, without a shadow of a doubt, this year’s FantasyCon was THE best one we’ve attended. Certainly, from Spectral’s perspective, this was undoubtedly an unqualified success – but more on that later.

The Spectral staffers (all two of us) journeyed to the seaside resort of Brighton on the south coast of the UK on the Thursday, mainly because we wanted to be feeling refreshed when the con proper started the next day. Nevertheless, on that same evening we stopped by the venue and met up with some old friends, and eventually we, along with Mark Morris, Sarah Pinborough, Rio Youers, Tim Lebbon, Gary & Emily McMahon, and Gardner Goldsmith, stomped off for an Italian meal in a nearby restaurant. Superb start to the weekend.

Friday started pretty blurrily until we had coffee, then everything swam into focus nicely. We spent the day meeting some more old friends, as well as making a lot of new ones. Spectral didn’t have much to do that day, except a book launch later on in the evening – most of the afternoon was spent worrying whether the hardbacks of John L. Probert’s The Nine Deaths of Dr. Valentine would turn up. Talk about cutting it fine! However, they did turn up , as did the paperback editions – sighs of relief all round.

The launch itself was an absolute blinder – John Probert’s bombastic introduction completely stole the show and, more to the point, the launch room was packed with eager punters – some to collect their hardback copies and others wanting to get their sweaty hands on the paperbacks. We were all kept busy, Simon taking the money (and then handing it on to his wife Lizzie for safekeeping) and John busily scribbling his signature on to the insides of books AND on the poster that came with it. By the time all was over, both Spectral staffers were somewhat shellshocked at how well the event had gone, and John was over the moon at the book’s reception.

Inevitably, then, Saturday was a late start for us, due to sheer exhaustion from the night before. However, a full English breakfast sorted that out. Saturday morning turned out to be a lot quieter than the previous two days, and that afternoon, Mike Powell (our generous host, who let us stay at his flat for the weekend), took us on a Belgian beer tour of Brighton, which left at least one of us feeling a tad worse for wear. The Belgians really do know how the craft their ales.

Luckily, however, when it came time for the Spectral at the Movies reading event later that evening, the effects of the beer had worn off and mellowness had taken its place. The reading was also a great success, with Stephen Volk reading a passage from his Spectral Visions novella Whitstable (due in May next year), which is certainly one of the most heartfelt tributes to its main protagonist, Peter Cushing, that I’ve had the pleasure of reading. Many of the attendees echoed that sentiment. Stephen’s quiet reading was followed by the larger than life John Llewellyn Probert, who read a part of chapter two of The Nine Deaths of Dr. Valentine. We all judged the reading a very great success.

The Spectral staffers decided to skip the now-traditional Saturday night FCon disco because, in all honesty, our bones couldn’t have managed it. Instead, we crawled home, tired but happy, and as soon as we fell into bed we were unconscious.

Sunday was an early start, as one of us was moderating the only panel of the day, at 10am,  ‘Marketing for Newcomers’.  The stage was shared with Peter Mark May, Charles Christian and Trevor Denyer (Chris Teague of Pendragon Press was also meant to be participating, but he was attending the British Fantasy Society AGM at the time). A great discussion ensued, marred only by the fact that there was no PA and a loud air-conditioning system, necessitating some shouting just to be heard. The hour went swiftly by, however, and all the panellists seemed to have made a good impression on the early-bird audience.

And so to the high-point of the weekend: the British Fantasy Society Awards. As you know, Spectral was nominated in two categories – King Death by Paul Finch in the Short Fiction category and the imprint itself in the PS Publishing Independent Press Award. Sadly, Spectral didn’t win in either, however just being nominated in the Awards was sufficient. One annoying little disappointment spoiled the event: King Death was inexplicably left out of the nomination announcements for the Short Fiction category. Other than that, everything went very smoothly.

Congratulations are due to ALL the winners this year, meaning that the genre is definitely in safe hands. ONE award winner we MUST mention in particular: our good friend Adam Nevill winning the award for best horror novel, with The Ritual. Certainly it was well deserved!

To conclude, a mightily successful event. There’s no FantasyCon next year – however, there IS World Fantasy Con instead, for which we’ve already bought our tickets. THAT is guaranteed to be TRULY spectacular!

Onwards and upwards!

FantasyCon: the 2012 edition

FantasyCon 2012 logo

It’s that time of the year once more, when the widely dispersed clans of Writers, Publishers and Editors all gather in some hotel somewhere (in the Royal Albion Hotel in Brighton again this year) and chat about all things genre and books. This year, unlike our previous attendances, things are slightly different for us: we have a book launch going on, a reading to host, a panel to moderate and an awards ceremony to be nervous about. In between we shall be meeting up with various people to talk ‘business’ over drinks, and we are hoping to be able to report some good things when we get back in terms of new novellas and chapbooks. Spectral is definitely going through some exciting times, and we have a feeling that even better things will be coming your way in 2013 and beyond!

Anyway, for those interested, here’s our FantasyCon schedule for this year:

Friday 28th September, Bar Rogue, 9pm – 10pm: launch of The Nine Deaths of Dr. Valentine by John Llewellyn Probert. There will be free wine, and John will be signing both the hardbacks and the paperbacks. Posters will also be given away as well as Spectral badges.

Saturday 29th September, Readings Room 134, 9:30pm – 10pm: Spectral at the Movies reading, with Stephen Volk and John L. Probert.

Sunday 30th September, Fitzherbert Room, 10 am – 11am: Panel, Market Information for Newcomers, with Christopher Teague (Pendragon Press) and Peter Mark May (Hersham Horror).

Sunday 30th September, Regency Lounge, 1pm onwards: nervously pacing up and down and biting fingernails at the Awards Ceremony….

If any of you out there are planning on attending, then please do make yourself known to us. This promises to be a great event, the highlight of the year, and what a great setting into the bargain. There will be a further post nearer the time with more details of the event itself, such as Guests of Honour and the programme of events due to be held.

More news soon!

Aaaaaand off we go…

… to the historic bustling, bohemian seaside town known as Brighton, on the south coast of the UK. In just 24 hours, my wife Liz and I will be setting off for that fair place to attend this year’s FantasyCon event (her first and my second), for three days of excellent company, good food and drink, panels, talks and book-signings, and even a pantomime and burlesque on the Saturday evening (although still not entirely sure about the ‘disco’…). The weather is set to be better than fine, with clear blue skies and blazing sunshine promised. Liz will probably spend part of the time walking on the sea-front and beach, while I will no doubt be propping up the bar and engaging in stimulating literary conversation… or something of that kind. Whatever happens, a good time will be had by all.

If any of you wonderful people out there are attending, then please don’t hesitate to make yourselves known. This is one of the greatest assets of this event – the sheer friendliness and camaraderie of it, and that is always in very plentiful supply. Plus, as a bonus, there will be a specially-printed Spectral Press postcard (featuring the cover image from Paul Finch’s forthcoming King Death chapbook) being given out in the attendees’ goodie bag for you all to pin to your office wall when you get home. That’s worth the price of admission on its own! =D

At any rate, there will be internet silence from me until Monday afternoon at the earliest. So, if you ARE going to FantasyCon, then I will see you at the bar!