Author Interview – Simon Kurt Unsworth – FantasyCon 2011

Hundreds of fantasy, sci-fi and horror fans descended on Brighton last weekend for the British Fantasy Society‘s annual convention. Our reviews editor, P.G. Bell, was one of them.

There are lots of good reasons to attend the annual FantasyCon. Free wine is one. The chance to meet your favourite writers and publishers in the flesh is another. And that’s why I was there. (Well, also for the free wine. But definitely not for Saturday night’s tentacle burlesque show. Honest).

I got to chat with World Fantasy Award nominated writer Simon Kurt Unsworth, who was in town to launch his new book, Quiet Houses. (If you haven’t heard our review of Quiet Houses yet, you can download it here). He told me how the book came into being, how a series of long bus journeys led to him becoming a writer, and why he likes his characters to be “baffled”. Click the link below to hear the full story, and read on after the break for some photos of the launch and the rest of the weekend!


Click on any of the images below to view them full size

The impressively shirted Simon Kurt Unsworth at the Quiet Houses launch on Saturday night. The Dark Continents cake was impressive but – alas – did not survive long enough for me to get a slice.

John Ajvide Lindqvist (Let The Right One In) gave a very entertaining interview on Saturday morning and introduced a screening of Hammer’s Let Me In that evening. An utterly charming – and genuinely funny – man.

Journalist, critic and novelist Kim Newman was a crowd favourite and seemed to be enjoying every minute of his Q&A session.
The Dealers’ Room – always an Aladdin’s cave – was particularly enticing this year. Luckily for me, a strict regime of self-discipline and poverty stopped me going overboard. But I was sweating blood by the time I left. (Actually, I was just sweating – it was hot in there).
The real star of the weekend was Brighton itself, especially the pier, which was practically on the convention’s doorstep. And what fantastic weather! It was like a proper summer holiday in October. Magnificent.