Thursday, 28 January 2010

Win A Gruesome Death!

Your chance for immortality by your own gruesome demise - in John Meaney’s (Thomas Blackthorne’s) next Angry Robot title – or you can win a gorgeous replica Aztec calendar offered by Aliette de Bodard.

All you have to do is be at the signing of 'Edge' and Aliette's stunning 'Servant of the Underworld' at Forbidden Planet’s London Megastore, 179 Shaftesbury Avenue on Friday 12th February 6 – 7pm.

There will also be a unique opportunity to interview the authors – and to speak to them about their work – after the signing... (which is also likely to involve beer).

John Meaney brings us the terror of Knife Edge – the reality TV show where wannabe blade fighters are the celebrities in a nation going to hell. Take a bloodied trip through a future London where prime-time gladiatorial combat has taken on a deadly bite.

Aliette de Bodard is a winner of the Writers of the Future Award and a Campbell Award finalist. 'Servant of the Underworld' is her debut novel, an Aztec mystery-fantasy featuring ghostly jaguars, bloodthirsty Gods and fingernail-eating monsters – and revealing her passion for, and knowledge of, Aztec mythology and culture.

Check it out at Forbidden Planet, or at Angry Robot Books.

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Tuesday, 26 January 2010

At Last We Shall Have... Peter Serafinowicz

We’ve had Simon Pegg – advising me on what to call my then-unborn son - and Nick Frost – running loose with a price-gun and answering the phones. Hence, it seems rather fitting that their Spaced arch-rival Peter Serafinowicz will be signing at the Forbidden Planet London Megastore on Monday 1st February 6 – 7pm.

Peter Serafinowicz is a cult figure, known by fans for his show-stealing appearances in Spaced, Black Books, How Do You Want Me?, Look Around You and Shaun of the Dead. He also has a hugely credible list of guest appearances to his name – including, famously, providing the voice for Darth Maul in The Phantom Menace.

Taking a humorous swipe at today’s choice of viewing, the BAFTA-Award nominated The Peter Serafinowicz Show hosts gloriously futile television game shows, including Heads Or Tails? and Which Hand Is It In?, while offering exclusive ‘celebrity’ interviews on O! News.

Through his impressions of familiar faces, Peter creates a world in which Simon Cowell and Terry Wogan mingle with famous fictional characters like Darth Vader and with his own quirky creations – like the wonderfully incompetent PI Brian Butterfield. And look out for Robert De Niro, Marlon Brando, Mikey, Mikey and Mikey, and Kitchen Gun’s Derek Bum.

We’re just hoping we can persuade him to use the tannoy…

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Sunday, 24 January 2010

Many Dead Things - The Art of Eldritch Horror

Thomas Theodore Merrilyn is an enigmatic figure, a 19th Century aristocrat and naturalist who spent his life scouring the earth for wonders forgotten by science.

In an exquisitely sinister book, he presents the specimens of his century-long search – the anatomical research cases of the werewolf, the remains of the vampire, the macabre equipment used by Doctor Moreau.

Found in 2006 in the sealed basement of a London Orphanage, the Merrilyn Cryptid Collection is a treasure trove of ephemera that defies our knowledge of nature. Each piece is linked by a story arc – a tale that encapsulates the mystery surrounding this odd figure and his compelling collection of things that never were.

The book described above is the work of artist Alex CF, something so ghoulishly creative that I was absolutely bowled over. It’s a beautiful fiction, ghastly and fascinating, thorough and believable – a mixture of eldritch horror, Darwinian biology and the willing, even eager, suspension of disbelief.

Featuring a foreword by Reece Shearsmith, himself a collector of Alex’s work, the book is meticulous, all-encompassing – detailed diaries, anatomical drawings, life-like specimens, microscope slides and mummified Pharaoh remains - all of it darkly, gloriously grotesque. Yet the pages turn and turn as if Merrilyn himself is reaching out to help them.

It's rare I'm sent something that renders me as speechless as the work of Lord Merrilyn – four years in the creation, it's beyond mind-blowing. This is a book that needs to do for exquisitely ghoulish biology what WETA’s Doctor Grordbort did for rayguns.

Alex is looking for a publisher - and something this beautiful needs to be shared.

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Tuesday, 19 January 2010

The Best Comics Events

Sometimes, you need to get back to your roots. And if you're Forbidden Planet, that means COMICS!

We're delighted to be welcoming: -

Thursday 28th January 6 – 7pm: PAUL CORNELL signing Captain Britain

Thursday 4th February 5:30 – 7pm: THE 45 EVENT from Com.X

Friday 25th February 6 – 7pm: ANDY DIGGLE & JOCK signing The Losers

In Captain Britain and MI13: Vampire State, Paul brings us the tale of the King of the Vampires – and he’s back! What does he want with Spitfire? And how will an election help his cause? Surely Captain Britain and the rest of MI13 have a way to defeat him! Plus: Meggan is Captain Britain's wife, an X-Man in Hell. she get back to Earth in time to help her husband turn back Dracula and his evil invasion?

Our ‘45’ event brings together Andi Ewington and an all-star creator-cast for one of our famous and trademark free-form signings – no tables, no queues. With an array of fantastic Com.X titles on hand, this event blows away the barriers and gives readers and fans a change to mix and chat on a less formal level, grab some great sketches, and really find out what goes on in the world of comics!

Needing no introduction, The Losers was winner of the Best New Comic, National Comics Awards 2004, and nominated for the Best New Series, Eisner Awards 2004 – and it’s now a major motion picture. Come and meet the creators!

And look out for Mike Carey's 'The Unwritten' - scribbling at an FP near you (no bogus identities promise) in March!

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Tuesday, 12 January 2010

Republic Commando Invasion!

First, we had Commander Bly – then the Galactic Marine. Now, Forbidden Planet and Gentle Giant bring you: the Republic Commandos.

Over the years, top toy and figure sculptors Gentle Giant have received many requests for the Delta Squad Clone Troopers from the Lucasarts video game Republic Commando - now, they take that invasion worldwide.

Each of the four Commandos is being launched at ONE place in the world – Forbidden Planet will be launching the London figure, the bust 'Sev', on 30th January. We will also have very limited amounts of the other three – 'Boss’ (USA), ‘Fixer’ (Japan) and ‘Scorch’ (the Netherlands).

Plus, you can meet the Gentle Giant himself, Karl Meyer, there to sign these incredibly limited edition pieces.

There will be free Star Wars bust-ups and prize draws for Gentle Giant goodies. Randomly selected winners will have their features digitally scanned – and one lucky winner will have their head placed upon a totally unique Star Wars bust.

Like this chap...

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Tuesday, 5 January 2010

Eyepod: Unique Artwork Opportunity

Announcing an amazing, one-off opportunity to purchase a unique artwork, created by master metal-crafter Simon Fearnhamm of Raven Armoury.

This life-size bronze skeleton took over a year to create. Named ‘Empathy’ for the MP3 to which he listens, he’s sitting cross legged, listening to his ‘eyepod’ and smoking a cigarette.

His eye is synthetic, made in silicon by a top prosthetics expert; his other eye is acrylic and inset in the sterling-silver-and-ebony ‘eyepod’ itself – which is looking back at him. His headphones are steel, copper and leather; the cigarette is mammoth ivory with wire wool for tobacco.

More details and the opportunity to purchase this exclusive item can be found here.

Established in 1987, Raven Armoury is a highly regarded company of English Sword Makers. Every item created is hand-made, with quality materials and meticulous attention paid to every detail and accuracy.

Well-known to collectors world-wide, Raven specialise in made to order work, creating reproductions of original swords and daggers as well as custom designs. Most recently, Simon Fearnhamm created the exquisitely accurate replicas of David Gemmell’s famous ‘Snaga’ for the David Gemmell Legend Award.

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Saturday, 2 January 2010

Win-Win: How To Sign An Ebook

It’s so simple, it’s genius.

Removable, collectable vinyl covers – plain, a selection of colours, maybe they can be stylised by your favourite art toy designer – but ultimately, they’re there to collect signatures. Take one to a Convention, keep it on you, it protects your Kindle, it looks cool – and you get to show off all the autographs/sketches you’ve collected.

It’s a talking point in the bar – a great way to chat up fanboys/girls and a lovely excuse to approach your favourite writer. Plus the authors get to keep up with their public appearances – hell, if this is marketed right and catches on, it could be a new and different lease of eventing life… bigger multi-author signings will surely become more popular, and (we’re back to this again) everybody wins.

And how can you lose?

• People love to collect stuff – toys, stickers, hardware.
• People love to show stuff off – particularly in this industry.
• How many geeks have covers for their laptops – collect a year’s worth of stickers then change for a new one?
• How many fans have signing books – a new page for every author and/or artist they’ve met?
• How many people collect art toys, blind-boxed or otherwise?

As my boss would say, this fucking writes itself.

Art toys have invaded every level of the geek lifestyle – from iPhones to USB keys to every kind of ‘streetgeek’ fashion… the MonQee was a groundbreaker – the first cross-over of art toy and speculative fiction.

He proved that it works.

Let’s do this again – focused and saleable, an industry revolution. Vinyl designers to produce signable, collectable covers for eBooks. Don’t even get me started on rare versions and limited editions and yadda yadda…

It’s so simple, it’s genius.

So - who's going to manufacture me a prototype?

Just FYI: there's a follow up to this post on my new blog - here).

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