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Calgary calling November 2, 2008

Posted by Marco in Events, world fantasy.

Calgary in Canada – which is where I am right now – is a looong way from the UK, so many hours behind that it feels like the con’s only just started while it’s actually day three already. So why come all this way? Because World Fantasy is possibly the best con around, at least for us publishing types. It’s fairly compact – maybe 1200 folks, and well over half of these are writers, artists and editors. It’s the sort of con where you can spy the near-godlike George RR Martin in a huddle with new guy Peter Brett, or artists of the calibre of Todd Lockwood and John Picacio swapping war stories over a drink, and barely bat an eye. The sheer approachability of such talented men and women is often a feature of SF cons, but at World Fantasy it’s unparalleled. Check out some photos from the con, already up on Flickr, courtesy of the tireless Kathryn Cramer… and yes, your humble scribe is lurking in at least three of these.

This con is also a place where publishers can get some proper face-to-face time with writers old and new, go deep into the detail, and ultimately, well, buy some books. Well, I’ve certainly done some of that… But if it’s all the same with you, you’ll have to wait till the ink’s dry on some contracts before I can tell you what they are. But we’re getting there, that’s for sure. It’s been gratifying to find, too, that so many people here know about Angry Robot, and indeed our mission too. 

Calgary itself is an odd place – a massively developed downtown with towering skyscrapers and streets in almost perpetual shade, and a few blocks either side some neighborhoods so shabby you’d swear they were stuck in a Kojak episode from 1975. If you find the Calgary Tower on the photo and go down its column, the con’s in the brown building just below it. Oh yeah, and that clinking sound is enticing me away from my laptop. Cheers!


Go and listen to the Boss October 30, 2008

Posted by chrismichaels in Events, Future formats.
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Great album, but not the subject of this post!

Great album, but not the subject of this post!

Not that Boss – though I love a listen to Born to Run pretty much anytime.

OUR boss: Victoria Barnsley, HarperCollins UK and International CEO and Publisher.

She’s at the London School of Economics next Tuesday talking about exactly the business context that led Angry Robot to come into existence: the change coming from traditional thinking about what a publishing company does (acquires and publishes books for other people to sell for them) to what future publishing companies must do (acquire and distribute content for them and their consumers to decide what they want to do with).

Vicky’s talking about that in the context of the transition from “analogue” thinking to “digital” thinking – and that’s exactly right. Digital’s not just a way of marketing, it’s a way of thinking – to say we fully know what the hell it means yet would be stretching it, but we want to find out!

Anyway, if you’re in London, go along for a glimpse of the bigger picture.

Robots on the march, pt.2 October 21, 2008

Posted by Marco in Events.
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It’s almost time for World Fantasy Con, the best little convention we ever did attend. This year we have the rare treat of a trip to Calgary, Canada, for a few days of chat, beer, reunions, beer, panels, beer, beer and some drinking too. Attending this year for Angry Robot will be Marc G, AR Publishing Director, and Chris Michaels, the official HarperCollins special publishing strategy and future mad ideas genius guy (no really; he has to have a special fold-out business card and everything).

If you’re attending, come and say hi, sell us a couple of books, look us square in the eye and deny our powers are only being used for good. If you’re not, hell, what’s your sorry-ass excuse? Jack in your sucky job, put the kids in hock for a week, get there by paddle steamer or floatplane or huskies or kayak but get there. Aaaanyway, we’ll be in from Thursday October 30th and shipping out mid-Monday November 3rd, so track us down.

Robots on the march pt.1 October 8, 2008

Posted by Marco in Events.
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This coming weekend, the Angry Robot crew will be rampaging down to the sleepy town of Northampton (the UK one). Why? Oh pshaw — it’s only flipping Newcon 4! Along with the mighty Iain Banks, who’ll be bringing his M with him, there’ll be the usual marvellousness from Paul Cornell, Ken McLeod and the crepuscular Storm Constantine, plus a whole heap of further sfnal and fantastical goodness. The venue — the town’s old fishmarket, now an arts centre — is ideal for a small but smart convention, and the organisers, the Ians Watson and Whates, are such darlings it’s almost impossible not to have fun. See you there and yes, we are buying.