Gosh. How cool was that? I know I said last year was best Fcon ever - but dudes! This year! Totally, absolutely, BEST FCON EVER!!! (Apart from my feet - been killing me ever since Friday lunchtime and was v. painful to walk for the whole weekend...) but apart from that...
Chaz Brenchley & Juliet McKenna!!! Hands down, the best double act in the world. Ever ever. Their interview should have gone on longer... And I got to sit with Juliet at the Banquet! She's totally, totally fab!
And Chaz was totally on form! There could be some mega-cool BFS/WF combi events in the pipeline if conversations can continue... (and apols for the high school teen speak that will be peppering this post - it's early, I'm excited...)
We made £1000 on the raffle (split between Black Dust and Daisy's Dream)
Neil Gaiman - what a terrific chap! I shook his hand! And talked to him!
Clive Barker - great guy! What a trooper! He was poorly all weekend but still managed to come up with an on the spot after dinner speech... and when he signs books he draws pictures!
Ramsey Campbell! Shorts in September! The only man I know who can make a story about cheese toasties sound entertaining!
Ray Feist - fun guy! Looked like he really enjoyed it and could be found hanging in the bar chatting to everyone! Great sense of humour, that man!
Garry Charles! Thanks for the CD!
Steve Jones - total sweetie!! And his reaction when he won the Special Award was just excellent!
Dave Howe - worked his ass off! Buy his books!
Awards! While I remember (although, this is from memory, so I may have mixed up winners and categories and the like...)
2006 BFS Award Winners are:
British Fantasy Award for Best Novel: The August Derleth Award
Neil 'shocked, delighted, bemused' Gaiman, ANANSI BOYS
British Fantasy Award for Best Novella:
Stuart 'Shocked and utterly speechless' Young, THE MASK BEHIND THE FACE
British Fantasy Award for Best Anthology:
Allen 'I've just scored the winning goal!' Ashley, THE ELASTIC BOOK OF NUMBERS
British Fantasy Award for Best Collection:
Joe 'twice in one day!' Hill, TWENTIETH CENTURY GHOSTS
British Fantasy Award Best Short Fiction:
Joe 'the plaque's dropped off' Hill, BEST NEW HORROR
British Fantasy Award for Best Artist :
Les 'share the glory with the other artists present!' Edwards
British Fantasy Award for Best Small Press:
Peter 'back in the game!' Crowther, PS PUBLISHING
And the Karl Edward Wagner Special Award went to a very surprised Stephen Jones! Who took at least 5 minutes of persuading before he'd believe we were actually trying to give an award to him! (You had to be there... :-> )
The Committee also decided to present 4 Special Founders Awards this year in appreciation of the people whose hard work and enthusiasm got the BFS rolling in the first place: Keith Walker, Rosemary Pardoe, Phil Spencer & David A. Sutton. Dave accepted on everyone else's behalf... and what a sweetie he is.And we surprised Pete & Jan with champagne and gifts...
And we surprised Debs & Rob too!
And the hotel was brilliant (the bar staff were a bit dodgy - we got one of them fired!!) - we're pretty much 98% certain we're using it again next year (and how cool would it be to have a permanent Fcon home for a while?) but just need a couple more discussions. As soon as it's booked, we'll announce the date and first two guests...
And I actually did a banquet! And could eat the food! (That never happens!)
And the food stayed hot and was good quality (which, apparently, hardly ever happens!)
And we had a bunch of people join up as new BFS members!
And we sold things off the BFS table!! Lots of things!!! (Can't remember the last time that happened!)
And didn't get into the dealers rooms to spend money due to the headless chicken thing but there looked like a whole heap of great stuff!!
And the raffle went on *forever*!
And other lovely guys and gals: Mark Morris! Andrew Hook! John L. Probert! Nick Lermentov! (Sorry, can't remember his real surname!!), John Connolly, Mark Chadbourn, the guy from Chronicles Network whose name slips my brain (and his business card is stashed in the luggage somewhere), Paul Cornell (dropped in for a surprise visit on the Saturday and would have been squeezed onto a panel if we could have thought of one!!!), Paul 'also worked his ass off' Campbell, Mike Chinn, Peter Coleborn, Chris Teague, Jan Edwards, Nicki Robson, Sandy Auden, Mandy Slater, Anne Sudworth, Talking Dead Bob, Erik Arthur, and many more...
And the AGM was terrifying - huge room, we were up on stage, with microphones!! Arrgh! Next year it's going in one of the smaller rooms. I am organiser, that is the law!!
And we were overrunning before the AOB bit so that was waaay shorter than expected -I'm sure we must have forgotten something...
We voted in a non-fiction award, no one raised the Newcomer award that was talked about, though, and I only remembered about it on the way home last night... I think the whole DG newcomer award thing was being done independentally or something.. I dunno, brain went into meltdown..
And, Fcon and Prism (ie. my report areas) got the most discussions on them... you gits! Did I mention I hate talking into microphones? Suggestions were made, notes were taken... beyond that, my brain is going hazy...
And I don't have the final attendee count but it's got to be around the 350 mark! Gosh!!
And there were loads of new people there!
And you were all so nice! And thanks for coming!!!