Thursday, January 25, 2007

Wow! World Horror Con 2007 in Toronto.... shaping up to be a fabulous show and we're still two months away. First of all, congrats to Joe R. Lansdale for being recognized with the 2007 Grand Master Award, which will be given at this year's WHC. That's terrific news. The cover for the con's Souvenir Book will be my art that first appeared on Joe's BUMPER CROP collection (Golden Gryphon Press, 2004). And check out this Souvenir know how most cons do these as glossy magazines of varying quality? Hey, not this year's WHC. These folks are blowing it out and doing a fabulous hardcover volume called TRAVELLERS IN DARKNESS, edited by the great Stephen Jones. Seriously, how many cons do their Souvenir Books as a hardcover giveaway? Macho! I can't wait for this.

Check out the preliminary programme preview. There's some really neat stuff happening. I'm very excited about the PS Publishing Launch Party at Toronto's Merril Collection of Science Fiction, Speculation, and Fantasy. How cool is that? You get to party AND take a tour of a historic collection of classic genre works. I'm so there. Peter Crowther, the man behind PS, will be the Publisher Guest of Honor this year and he's releasing a really special tenth issue of his magazine POSTSCRIPTS in conjunction with the show. I did the cover art and the full lineup of writers in this issue is mind-blowing. If you haven't already ordered one of these, you might want to stop reading this, and get one for yourself. Seriously. Michael Marshall Smith, Graham Joyce, Lucius Shepard, Tim Lebbon, Joe Hill, Stephen King, Connie Willis, and more.....pleeeease. Good lord.

Speaking of Michael Marshall Smith, I couldn't be happier that he's the Author Guest of Honor. He's one of my favorites, a brilliant writer, and it's great to see his works celebrated. I'm looking forward to spending time with all of the GOHs.

I could go on, and I probably will as the show approaches,(heck, I didn't even mention that the Stoker Awards take place there this year) but the point is -- WHC2007 is gonna be a wonderful con and if you're not already registered, you should. Anyone out there have any favorite restaurant suggestions for Toronto?

Friday, January 19, 2007

My 2006 Published Works

In light of recent revisions to the Hugo nominating ballot, Irene Gallo offered a very sensible reminder. She suggested it's time for all professional artists to make it easier for anyone, Hugo voters or otherwise, to know which of an artist's works have appeared in a given year. Her intent is not for artists to campaign for awards, but for all of us to start organizing information more clearly and accessibly.

The WSFS Business Meeting at last year's Worldcon placed the onus of responsibility squarely on the individual artist, not the Hugo voter or anyone else, to make information regarding his/her own recent published work more readily available. So webmaster Steve McDaniel has placed on my website's front page a link labeled "See John Picacio's 2006 Published Work." Click it and you can scroll through an easy rundown of my sf/f art published in '06. Enjoy.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

More info re: Hugo ballots

Frank Wu has posted further info re: the Hugo nominating ballot situation. Check it out, if you're interested. His post contains a letter from Joyce Hooper, the lead Hugo administrator for 2007.

Monday, January 15, 2007

IMPORTANT Message for this year's Hugo Voters!

Please read Patrick Nielsen Hayden's blog for full details on the nature of some major problems with this year's Hugo nominating ballot.

Here's what I've heard thus far: Although the Hugo Awards Administrator has yet to formally reply to the concerns, many people familiar with the process expect that the ballots will be revised and re-issued. My understanding is that voters may want to hold off casting ballots for a couple of weeks (at least) while the situation gets sorted out in the Editor and Best Professional Artist categories. If this remedy does in fact occur, I think it's a good thing. Although it's unfortunate that the errors occurred in the first place, it says good things about the process that they can be remedied, if such a solution does occur.

Right now, my understanding is that only LA Con IV members received the faulty ballots. Members of Nippon 2007 have not received their ballots yet. It's certainly not a panic situation, but for now, I guess we all need to wait before we cast our nominations. I'm glad I haven't submitted mine yet. If I hear any confirmed updates on this matter, I'll share them here.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

More "Best of 2006" Love for COVER STORY

Been busy over here, so I'm a little late on this. Revolution SF contributors Peggy Hailey and Rick Klaw have each recently released their lists for "What Is Best In Life" for 2006. I'm pleased to say that both have selected COVER STORY: THE ART OF JOHN PICACIO amongst their favorite books from this past year. Thanks, folks! I was also pleased to see books by John Scalzi, Chris Roberson, Jeff Ford, Scott Cupp, and Mark Finn, amongst their choices. Peggy is not only RevolutionSF's esteemed book editor, but she's also a buyer for one of the finest independent bookstores in the country, BookPeople. Rick is Editor Emeritus over at RevSF, and is currently working on a biography of his famous grandfather Irving Klaw, "the King of Pin-up".

As for this photo, BLOOD & THUNDER author Mark Finn channels his inner barbarian and displays the cover (illustrated by Yours Truly) of his highly-acclaimed Robert E. Howard biography. Check out Mark's own edition of "What's Best in Life (And The Tree of Woe) 2006."

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

SFRevu Rings In 2007

The good folks over at SFRevu just posted their latest issue, and they've got a very recent conversation with me over there (conducted by Gayle Surrette), along with a terrific review for COVER STORY: THE ART OF JOHN PICACIO. Check it out.

The issue also contains an interview with everyone's favorite fire-breathing editor, Lou Anders, editorial director of Pyr. Apparently, the interview is so hot-off-the-press, that they'll be updating it within the next 24-48 hours of this writing, so stay tuned over there.

On a sidenote, congrats to all at Pyr for landing 3 books in Barnes & Noble's Top Ten Novels of 2006 (John Meaney's RESOLUTION at #6, Sean Williams' THE CROOKED LETTER at #4, and David Louis Edelman's INFOQUAKE locking down the coveted #1 spot). Huge congrats to all.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Hello, 2007

Again, Happy New Year to all!

Off to a good start -- woke up this morning to find that SFSignal just released their 2006 Year-In-Review. Pleased to discover that COVER STORY: THE ART OF JOHN PICACIO is amongst their top 10 books of 2006. Nice company there, with standouts like John Scalzi's THE GHOST BRIGADES (Tor, featuring a sweet John Harris cover) and Ian McDonald's RIVER OF GODS (Pyr, featuring a terrific Stephan Martiniere cover). Thanks, guys!