Friday Five: 15 Pieces of Nonsensical Nonfiction
Underground Reading: The Steel Mirror by Donald Hamilton

Easter, Smoke and Steam

Easter weekend is fast approaching and it looks like it'll be a (long) weekend of science fiction spectacle, from Stories of the Smoke to EasterCon to Gail Carriger's Steampunk Soiree.

Stories of the SmokeThe fun starts early with the launch of Stories of the Smoke and Fire on Wednesday night at the Betsey Trotwood pub. After speaking to the pub, we've added a few more tickets - so if you missed out, please check the site again. We'd love to have you join us for readings, an auction for our friends at English PEN and general Dickensian mayhem. There will be walruses.

The weekend itself is dominated by EasterCon. For those that have never been, EasterCon is the UK's semi-nomadic, semi-erudite, largely-literary annual convention. This year it is back at the outskirts of Heathrow and boasts guests like George RR Martin, Tricia Sullivan, Cory Doctorow and Paul Cornell (plus, if you leer at the attendee list, you're looking at a who's who of British SF). 

We'll do a post closer to the time, but we'll be lurking around from Friday to late Sunday night, including the BSFA Awards. We'll have a really big bag for the trophy, so in the slim chance we don't win (cough), we can drown our sorrows in the dealer room.

Advance ticket purchasing has been extended to 31 March. Tickets are pricier at the door (and there's a chance that the convention will be fully booked), so if you're interested, pounce now.

Monday night will be a more civilised affair - bestselling tentacle-loving bustlepunk pioneer Gail Carriger is over and hosting a "Steampunk Soiree" at Foyles Charing Cross, 6.30 to 8.30. We're big fans of Ms. Carriger over here: her books, her blog and her tireless championship of good manners and cute cephalopoda. We'll be there with cogs on.

Steampunk Soiree------

Stories of the Smoke: Launch Event
Wednesday, 4 April: 6.30 to 8.30 pm
Betsey Trotwood, 56 Farringdon Road, EC1R 3BL
Free, but ticketed. (Get tickets here.)

Olympus2012 (EasterCon)
Friday, 6 April - Monday, 9 April
Radisson Edwardian Hotel, Heathrow
From £20/day, weekend passes available. (More info, tickets here.

Steampunk Soiree (featuring Gail Carriger and other guests)
Monday, 9 April: 6.30 - 8.30 pm 
Foyles, Charing Cross Road
Free, but ticketed. (Email for tickets at: [email protected]