Hannah Kate

poet, short story writer and editor based in Manchester

radio 1

April 26, 2016

North Manchester FM: Hannah’s Bookshelf, Saturday 30 April, 2-4pm

radio 2

Join me on Saturday, 2-4pm, for Hannah’s Bookshelf on North Manchester 106.6FM. This week, I’ll be chatting to the brilliant Sara Read.

Sara has been working on seventeenth-century women’s lives for ten years. She was awarded a PhD from Loughborough University in 2010 for her work on women’s reproductive health (including menstruation, pregnancy, miscarriage). She works as a lecturer in English at the same university.

Widely published in academic works, Maids, Wives, Widows: Exploring Early Modern Women’s Lives 1540-1740 is her first popular history book. It stems from her love of the era and her enthusiasm for the women she encountered in her academic work. She has articles on related topics in Discover Your Ancestors and History Today periodicals, and is a contributing editor on the popular blog, Early Modern Medicine.

I’ll be talking to Sara about her work and her writing, and, of course, she’ll be sharing her selections for Apocalypse Books.

Catch the show on Saturday at 2pm on 106.6FM (if you’re in the North Manchester area) or listen online (if you’re further afield).

Missed the show? You can listen again here:

radio 1

April 20, 2016

North Manchester FM: Hannah’s Bookshelf, Saturday 23 April, 2-4pm

radio 2

Join me on Saturday at 2pm for Hannah’s Bookshelf on North Manchester 106.6FM. My guest this week will be the fantastic John Reppion.

John was born in Liverpool, England in 1978. His writing career began in 2003 when he collaborated with his wife Leah Moore on a proposal for a six issue mini series entitled Wild Girl. The proposal was accepted and the series was published by Wildstorm in 2004/05. Since then the duo have written many classic characters including Doctor Who (in The Whispering Gallery with artist Ben Templesmith), Sherlock Holmes (in two original mysteries for Dynamite Entertainment), and Dracula (their adaptation of which is now on several university reading lists). They currently write the series Black Shuck and Storm Warning for 2000 AD.

John’s interests in fortean phenomena, esoterica, folklore, philosophy, theology and horror have led to his writing articles and reviews for numerous magazines and periodicals including Fortean Times, Strange Attractor, The Daily Grail and SteamPunk Magazine. 2008 saw the release of his first full length book 800 Years of Haunted Liverpool, published by The History Press. His Lovecraftian Liverpool tale On The Banks of the River Jordan was published in 2014 in Ghostwoods Books’ Cthulhu Lives! anthology. This year sees the release of more short Weird Fiction stories from John appearing in several anthologies.

I’ll be chatting to John about comics, writing, weird history and more – and, of course, he’ll be sharing his Apocalypse Books selections.

Catch us on Saturday, 2-4pm, on 106.6FM (if you’re in the North Manchester area) or listen online (if you’re further afield).

Missed the show? You can catch it again here:

radio 1

April 12, 2016

North Manchester FM: Hannah’s Bookshelf, Saturday 16 April, 2-4pm

radio 2

Tune in this Saturday at 2pm for Hannah’s Bookshelf on North Manchester FM. My guest this week will be the fantastic Gwyneth Jones.

Gwyneth Jones was born in Manchester, educated by the long-suffering nuns of the Sacred Heart, Blackley and at Notre Dame Grammar School Cheetham Hill. She is the author of many fantasy, horror novels and ghost stories for teenagers using the name Ann Halam, and several well regarded sf and fantasy novels and stories for adults: notably the Bold As Love series, and the Aleutian Trilogy. She has won the Arthur C. Clarke award (for Bold As Love); the Children of the Night award (for The Fear Man, as Ann Halam); the Tiptree award (for White Queen), two World Fantasy awards (for the story “The Grass Princess”, and for the collection Seven Tales and a Fable), the Philip K Dick award (for Life) and the Science Fiction Research Association’s Pilgrim award. She lives in Brighton with her husband, four intelligent goldfish and two cats called Ginger and Milo; she likes old movies, practicing yoga, and staring out of the window.

We’ll be talking about Gwyneth’s books and writing and, of course, she’ll be sharing her selections for Apocalypse Books. So please join us on Saturday at 2pm on 106.6FM (if you’re in the North Manchester area) or listen online (if you’re further afield).

Missed the show? You can catch it again here:

radio 1

April 7, 2016

North Manchester FM: Hannah’s Bookshelf, Saturday 9 April, 2-4pm

radio 2

Join me this Saturday for Hannah’s Bookshelf on North Manchester 106.6FM. My guest this week will be the fantastic Xavier Aldana Reyes.

Dr Xavier Aldana Reyes is Senior Lecturer in English Literature and Film at Manchester Metropolitan University and a founding member of the Manchester Centre for Gothic Studies. He is the author of various books, including Body Gothic: Corporeal Transgression in Contemporary Literature and Horror Film (UWP, 2014), Digital Horror: Haunted Technologies, Network Panic and the Found Footage Phenomenon (co-edited with Linnie Blake; I.B. Tauris, 2015), Horror Film and Affect: Towards a Corporeal Model of Viewership (Routledge, 2016) and Horror: A Literary History (editor; British Library, 2016, forthcoming). He is the editor of the Horror Studies book series run by the University of Wales Press.

I’ll be chatting to Xavier about academia, horror and Gothic Manchester – and, of course, he’ll be sharing his Apocalypse Books selections.

Tune in on Saturday at 2pm on 106.6FM (if you’re in the North Manchester area) or listen online (if you’re further afield).

Missed the show? You can catch up again here:

radio 1

March 30, 2016

North Manchester FM: Hannah’s Bookshelf, Saturday 2 April, 2-4pm

radio 2

Join me this Saturday, 2-4pm, for Hannah’s Bookshelf on North Manchester 106.6FM. My guest this week (in my second transatlantic interview!) will be Scott Thompson.

Award winning author, Scott Thompson, grew up in Georgia, USA, and it is the South that has inspired his stories. Through fiction he explores love, friendship, and family, and how tragedy and life events affect these relationships. Scott’s favourite poem is ‘A Rolling Stone’ by Robert W. Service. In this poem of freedom and exploration Service writes ‘I want to see it all’, and that sums of Scott’s life: he wants to see and do everything. This seeking has brought him to more than a few adventures that find their way into his fiction. What he’s discovered through his exploration is that there is more magic in the universe than we can imagine. But he truly believes that we’re offered glimpses into heaven almost daily if we’ll take the time to look, and through his book, Eight Days, he explores some of the glimpses that make it worth living.

Scott lives near Atlanta with his family. His work can be read in regional magazines, in his short stories, and in his first novel, Young Men Shall See. He’s also a founding editor at Grand Central Review.

I’ll be talking to Scott about his writing and his inspirations and, of course, he’ll be sharing his selections for Apocalypse Books.

Catch the show on 106.6FM (if you’re in the North Manchester area) or listen online (if you’re further afield).

Missed the show? You can catch it again here:

Spring 1

March 30, 2016

Spring is in the air! Some Floral Book Recommendations

Spring 2

On Easter Saturday, I decided to do a spring edition of Hannah’s Bookshelf (on North Manchester 106.6FM) – after all, the clocks were changing, the birds were singing, and I’d even had my first sighting of a Flymo. And what says springtime more than flowers? So the show was devoted to books with the names of flowers in the title. As promised, here are details of the books I featured on the show.

(Admittedly, by the time I was doing the show, it was pretty overcast, and I left the studio to howling winds and rain. But I didn’t let that deter me.)

Got any good suggestions for books with floral titles? Add them in the comments below!

Poppy

poppy

Poppy Shakespeare by Clare Allan (2006)

Poppy Shakespeare

Clare Allan’s debut novel tells the story of the eponymous Poppy, a young mother who is sent for mental health treatment at the Dorothy Fish day hospital, through the eyes of a fellow patient, N (the narrator). Poppy is dragged into a Kafkaesque world of bureaucratic nonsense, as she’s forced to prove she’s mad in order to prove she’s sane. We’re led through this somewhat surreal labyrinth by N, our unreliable but utterly compelling narrator, to the powerful and unsettling conclusion.

Poppy Shakespeare was adapted for TV in 2008, with amazing performances from Anna Maxwell Martin (as N) and Naomie Harris (as Poppy).

Scarlet Pimpernel

pimpernel

The Scarlet Pimpernel by Emma Orczy (1905)

Scarlet Pimpernel

People often seem surprised when they find out that this is one of my favourite novels – I guess it isn’t really my usual thing, but I love Emma Orczy’s tale of the dashing defender of French aristos. Set in 1792, the novel tells the story of a mysterious man known only by the little scarlet flower that serves as his emblem. Although it’s a bit weird to be rooting for the let-them-eat-cake aristocracy, it’s the love triangle between the foppish Sir Percy Blackeney, his Marguerite and the masked superhero that really captivates.

In case you didn’t catch it on the radio, the author’s full name was Baroness Emma Magdolna Rozália Mária Jozefa Borbála Orczy de Orci. I apologize if my pronunciation was bit off.

Nightshade

nightshade

Nightshade by Andrea Cremer (2010)

Nightshade book

Well… it wouldn’t be my radio show if I didn’t mention a werewolf or too. Andrea Cremer’s YA werewolf trilogy (which includes the sequels Wolfbane and Bloodrose) tells the story of Calla, the young alpha female of the Nightshade pack. Calla is a Guardian, sworn to serve the Keepers in their ancient battle with the Searchers… but is her world all that it seems? I really enjoyed this series – particularly the gradual unfolding of Calla’s dilemma. While it appears in the first book that this dilemma will be a love triangle, there’s a lot more complication to come in the sequels.

Aspidistra

aspidistra

Keep the Aspidistra Flying by George Orwell (1936)

Keep the Aspidistra Flying

Orwell’s ‘savage and bitter book’ (according to Cyril Connolly) tells the story of Gordon Comstock, a man who ‘declares war’ on money (or rather, on the dependence on money). He quits his job as a copyeditor, moves into a grotty bedsit, and spends his time working a dead-end job and writing poetry (unsuccessfully). Gordon has a relationship with Rosemary, which is hindered by his lack of money – but also by the fact that he is a pretty unpleasant guy and behaves appallingly to her – and the romance of the ‘penniless’ existence soon wanes. Keep the Aspidistra Flying has its faults, but it’s still an interesting and challenging read.

It’s also interesting to look at the parallels between this book and 1984. Though they are very different books in a lot of ways, the two works share certain underlying themes that contribute to an overall sense of satire and critique that runs throughout Orwell’s work.

Tulip

tulip

The Black Tulip by Alexandre Dumas (1850)

Black Tulip

Another historical novel now… Dumas’s novel opens in 1672, and the murder of Johan and Cornelius de Witt by an angry mob. After this intense opening, the story takes place in the following eighteen months, when a competition to grow a black tulip is taking Haarlem by storm. A young man named Cornelius van Baerle looks like he might be about to achieve success, but he is abruptly thrown into prison. As Cornelius’s story unfolds, the connections between this and the murder of the de Witt brothers start to become clear. In the end, the elusive tulipa negra comes to stand for something bigger than itself, and the story of the competition is revealed to be a political allegory.

Hemlock

Hemlock Grove by Brian McGreevy (2012)

Hemlock Grove

Okay… maybe one more werewolf before I finish… Although people might be more familiar with the TV adaptation (also written by McGreevy), Hemlock Grove was first published in 2012 (though it was already optioned for TV before this). The novel is set in a small town in Pennsylvania, where the closure of the local steel mill has created a vast gulf between the poor unemployed inhabitants and the rich Godfrey family who ‘own’ the town. The Godfrey family – glamorous matriarch Olivia, spoilt son Roman and disabled ‘monstrous’ daughter Shelley – have a dark secret, and are threatened by the arrival of the Rumanceks, a Romany mother and son who have secrets of their own. Throw into the mix a rogue werewolf picking off the town’s teens, rumours of sinister genetic experimentation at the Godfrey Institute, and the arrival of a monster-hunter, and… well… all manner of horror breaks loose.

To hear more about my thoughts on Hemlock Grove and the other floral-themed books featured in my springtime show, you can listen again here:

typewriter

March 20, 2016

Call for Submissions: Into the Woods (anthology)

into-the-woods-hic-dragonesFrom magical places steeped in mysticism to evil foreboding places of unspeakable terror, the forest is a place of secrets, a place of knowledge, a place of death, and a place of life. But it is also a vulnerable place easily lost to the chainsaw and the drill. Our fascination with what may lie within the woods is an enduring one. Bewilder us, scare us, entertain us. Take us on a journey… into the woods.

What we want: Edgy, dark and weird fiction. Any interpretation of the theme is welcome – and we have no preconceptions about what ‘into the woods’ might mean. Any genre considered: dark fantasy, (sub)urban fantasy, Gothic, horror, sci fi, steampunk, cyberpunk, biopunk, dystopian, slipstream. We’re looking for original and fresh voices that challenge and unsettle. (And, please remember, we do not publish misogyny, misandry, homophobia, transphobia or racism.)

Editor: Hannah Kate

Publisher: Hic Dragones

Word Count: 3000-7000

Submission Guidelines: Electronic submissions as .doc, .docx or .rtf attachments only. 12pt font, 1.5 or double spaced. Please ensure name, story title and email address are included on the attachment. Email submissions to Hic Dragones. Submissions are welcome from anywhere, but must be in English.

Submission Deadline: Monday 13th June 2016

For more information: email or visit the Hic Dragones website

radio 1

March 11, 2016

North Manchester FM: Hannah’s Bookshelf, Saturday 12 March, 2-4pm

radio 2

Join me on Saturday, 2-4pm, for Hannah’s Bookshelf on North Manchester 106.6FM.

As it was International Women’s Day earlier this week, and we celebrated with a special afternoon show on NMFM, I thought I’d continue with one of the things I talked about on air on Tuesday. I’ll be running through some of the best books by women that have been selected in Apocalypse Books. I’ll be featuring some great Manchester women (both in terms of the selectors and the selected), and giving a flavour of some of the great titles listed in the Library at the End of Days.

Tune in on 106.6FM (if you’re in the North Manchester area) or listen online if you’re further afield.

Missed the show? You can catch it again here:

typewriter

March 7, 2016

Call for Submissions: Nothing (anthology)

nothing-hic-dragonesBleak landscapes, empty hearts, insignificant lives, dystopian futures, extinction, limbo, uncertainty, death. A beautiful void or a horrific state of being. The simple complexity of nothingness.

Submissions wanted for a new anthology of short stories based on the theme of nothing.

What we want: Edgy, dark and weird fiction. Any interpretation of the theme is welcome – and we have no preconceptions about what ‘nothing’ might mean. Any genre considered: dark fantasy, urban fantasy, Gothic, horror, sci fi, steampunk, cyberpunk, biopunk, dystopian, slipstream. We’re looking for original and fresh voices that challenge and unsettle. (And, please remember, we do not publish misogyny, misandry, homophobia, transphobia or racism.)

Editor: Hannah Kate

Publisher: Hic Dragones

Word Count: 3000-7000

Submission Guidelines: Electronic submissions as .doc, .docx or .rtf attachments only. 12pt font, 1.5 or double spaced. Please ensure name, story title and email address are included on the attachment. Email submissions to Hic Dragones. Submissions are welcome from anywhere, but must be in English.

Submission Deadline: Monday 5th September 2016

Payment: Contributor copy (1 copy of paperback plus eBook in ePub and/or mobi format); permanent 25% discount on paperback (resale permitted); 1 free eBook from our catalogue.

For more information: email or visit the Hic Dragones website

radio 1

March 7, 2016

North Manchester FM: International Women’s Day Special, Tuesday 8 March, 12-4pm

radio 2

It’s International Women’s Day on Tuesday 8th March, and to celebrate North Manchester FM will be hosting a special show from 12-4pm. For one afternoon only, the women of NMFM will be getting together and co-hosting a show – along with some old faces (voices?) and guests – and, if I’m honest, having some fun while we’re doing it.

I’ll be taking part, and will be replaying some of the great books by women that have been selected on the Apocalypse Books section of Hannah’s Bookshelf. Tune in on 106.6FM (if you’re in the North Manchester area) or listen online (if you’re further afield).

Missed the show? You can catch it again here: