This past Friday, the team at Fantasy Faction and Blackwell’s held a Fantasy Night. In attendance were two fantasy heavyweights - Peter V. Brett and Joe Abercrombie – and up-and-comer debut author Myke Cole.
The event was extremely well attended, drawing fans, industry people, other authors, and not a few UK-based bloggers under one roof. We crammed ourselves into the store, braving the London heat to enjoy a freewheeling discussion on a wide variety of topics related to fantasy and speculative fiction.
Marc and Paul of Fantasy Faction hosted, pitching questions and ably steering the discussion between the authors and audience. Topics ranged from why fantasy is so popular these days (we’re the cool kids, now, apparently), to how fantasy has changed over the decades, to whether or not writing is the most fun one can have by oneself.
After the questions, the authors stuck around to sign many, many copies of their books, graciously taking their time to interact with their fans and answer more questions. The lines were long, taking us way beyond the shop’s closing time, before the festivities moved across the road to a pub, where the conversation continued well into the night.
Myke Cole’s debut had just been released and received a lot of attention (and sold out pretty fast). There was, however, a great deal of anticipation surrounding Joe Abercrombie’s upcoming sixth book, A Red Country.
Peter Brett’s line, though, was massive and seemingly-endless. With anticipation riding high for Brett’s third novel, The Daylight War (published by Voyager in February 2013) and also the new hardcover edition of his two novellas The Great Bazaar & Brayan’s Gold (published in January 2013), it was heartening to see so many people eager to meet him and get their books signed. One fan came all the way from Germany just to meet him!
Overall, the night was a huge success, with attendees declaring the event “entertaining”, “insightful” and “funny”, with all three authors on top-form. Peter Brett declared the evening “all win” on the event’s Facebook page, and Fantasy Faction founder Marc Aplin said “To see this many people come out to support us and the authors makes me incredibly proud and reminds me why I love this genre.”