Between the Tracks


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A visionary, fantasist, poet and painter, Clive Barker has expanded the reaches of human imagination as a novelist, director, screenwriter and dramatist who generally describes himself as "an Imaginer." Stephen King once described Barker as "The future of horror." Clive Barker's Books of Blood were quickly followed by a string of successful novellas and novels and several movie adaptations including the Hellraiser series, Nightbreed and The Midnight Meat Train, which is considered among the best adaptations from his short stories. Others inspired by his seminal collection of short stories include The Book of Blood; Dread; Rawhead Rex; Lord of Illusions; and the Candyman series. Clive's most recent work includes The Scarlet Gospels, and a series of illustrated novels ostensibly aimed at children, the Abarat series, three of which have been published and a further two he has been working on in visual and written form for several years. In 2012, Barker was given a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Horror Writer's Association, for his outstanding contribution to the genre. Ramsey Campbell is one of the most respected writers of horror and weird fiction. He has won more awards than any other living author of horror or dark fantasy, including the World Fantasy Award Life Award in 2015, 14 British Fantasy Awards, 4 World Fantasy Awards, 3 Bram Stoker Awards, 3 Horror Guild Awards, Lifetime Achievement Award of the Horror Writers Association, Living Legend Award of the International Horror Guild and more. Campbell's most recent novels and novellas include The Searching Dead, Thirteen Days by Sunset Beach, The Booking (novella), Think Yourself Lucky, and The Pretence, and his most recent collections include Inconsequential Tales, Just Behind You, The Last Revelation Of Gla'aki, Holes for Faces, and Limericks of the Alarming and Phantasmal. Many of his tales have been included in anthologies, and Campbell himself has edited or co-edited several anthologies. In recent months an anthology of stories was published, called 'The Children of Gla'aki-a Tribute to Ramsey Campbell's Old One' in which each story was inspired by Campbell's short story The Inhabitant of the Lake. Initially influenced by Lovecraft and Machen among others, The Inhabitant of the Lake and Less Welcome Tenants was published by Arkham House when he was eighteen years old. On the advice of August Derleth, he later relocated his story settings from Lovecraft country to more familiar English settings in and around the fictional city of Brichester, which he positioned near the River Severn. Much of the later work is set in or near Liverpool (See Secret Stories, Creatures of the Pool). For many years he was the President of the British Fantasy Society, and S. T. Joshi once stated of Campbell, "future generations will regard him as the leading horror writer of our generation, every bit the equal of Lovecraft or Blackwood." M.R. James (Montague Rhodes James) initially wrote his ghost tales to be read to groups of friends on Christmas Eve, and these were later published in various collections. He was a scholar and academic first and foremost, and many of his stories reflect his background and include characters with an interest in medieval or biblical studies or archaeology. Many of his plots revolve around an everyday situation in which the protagonist happens upon a mysterious object or wanders into a supernatural event, often led to their own demise by their own curiosity. Collections of his stories with similar titles abound, and include Ghost Stories of an Antiquary, More Ghost Stories of An Antiquary, Casting the Runes and Other Ghost Stories, and A Warning to the Curious and Other Ghost Stories. Several of his short stories-A Warning to the Curious and Oh Whistle, and I'll Come to You, My Lad-have been adapted for TV, and Casting the Runes was adapted as the movie The Night of the Demon, a personal childhood favourite of mine.

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