Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Guest Publisher – Brian Hades (EDGE Science Fiction & Fantasy Publishing)

Brian-Hades-3It is my distinct pleasure to welcome Brian Hades founder and publisher of the Edge Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing imprint. As Brian says later in the interview they went from a single book the first year to a total of over 120 titles in the first 10 years. EDGE Canada’s largest genre publisher recently celebrated that anniversary with a “Steam & Steel” social. You can read about the event and view some pictorial coverage of the social later in the post.

EDGE has some exciting plans for the coming 12 months that Brian reveals in his interview.

For those of you in or near Montreal EDGE is a co-sponsor of AN EVENING OF STRANGE CANADIAN STORIES. Come celebrate the strange and the fantastic as Claude Lalumière (The Door to Lost Pages), Glenn Grant (Burning Days), and Gemma Files (A Rope of Thorns) launch their new books and, joined by other Canadian writers and editors of weird fiction, showcase new and recent anthologies of the Canadian fantastic: Tesseracts 12, 13, and 14; Evolve: Vampire Stories of the New Undead; and Chilling Tales. There will be books for sale, and time to mingle and meet the authors before and after the readings. Location: Montreal's Blue Sunshine, March 30th from 8-10. Doors open at 7:30.



To celebrate the 10th anniversary, I have four EDGE titles to giveaway. To enter leave a question or comment for Brian and fill out the form at the end of the post. Titles are as follows -

54631421Avim's Oath by Lynda Williams
The Queen is dead, and two princes, Amel and Erien, are pushed centre-stage and made to vie for power that neither brother wanted. Driven by vengeful princesses, most notably the beautiful and dangerous Alivda, the brothers must prove themselves, choosing between the lives they wanted and the roles that people demanded of them.

57309598Cinkarion: The Heart of Fire by J.A. Cullum
Book Two in the Karionin Chronicles

“There was a time when wizards ruled the world,
And in that Golden Age the wizards made
Eight living crystals. So, while wizards die,
The karionin live and never fade.”

Home to nine races of humans and near-humans, the world of Tamar lies on the brink of total war unless the living crystals known as the karionin find young wizards capable of attuning themselves to the magic of the stones.

In “LYSKARION: The Song of the Wind (Book One in the Karionin Chronicles)”, the karionin Lyskarion chooses one of the dolphin folk wizards as its bearer. Now in a world torn by war between the humans and tiger folk, a second living crystal, Cinkarion must select a new bearer—one who’s mind is as powerful as the crystal itself.

To the human wizards’ initial disappointment, Cinkarion chooses a member of tiger folk royalty, a young woman who is a commander in the navy. Could this be a mistake, or part of a bigger plan to bring together a new wizards’ council — one that represents all of the races of Tamar in equality?
58249191Cinco de Mayo by Michael J. Martineck
Secrets: some feel freed having them out. Others will kill to keep them.

On May 5, in a flash of pain, every man, woman and child on the planet receives a second set of memories. A new name, a new language, a whole new life slips into their minds, along side their own. In Chicago, a transit worker now knows enough about the Aryan Brotherhood to mark him for death.

In Abu Dhabi, a playboy experiences modern day slavery.
A New York advertising executive shares the memories of a blind railroad working living in China.

And in Washington, a neurologist now studying the phenomenon must fight back the mystic memories invading her mind.

In a world of individuals, sudden intimacy is not for everyone. Some like the openness, some will even kill to keep their secrets.
58249193Immortal Quest by Alexandra MacKenzie
From Publishers Weekly: MacKenzie (who illustrated In My Nature), introduces Nick Watson, a London police sergeant who gets a bad case of déjà vu while interrogating a petty thief going by the single name of Marlen. The fellow swears he's an immortal mage, that he was only trying to retrieve a magical object that could be used to destroy mankind, and that he and previous versions of Nick have been buddies for 500 years. Then Nick is offered a job with a super-secret British spy agency run by his uncle, and it turns out they'd very much like to know more about mages in general, and this one in particular. Like it or not, Nick must accompany Marlen on a quest to recover two other key artifacts and defeat an evil plot. As if that weren't enough, Marlen has a secret: he and Nick have been a lot more than friends. From this unlikely premise, MacKenzie spins a charming and original urban fantasy that carries her sure-footed heroes through a maze of refreshing characters and laugh-out-loud revelations
Recent Highlights at EDGE:
  • EVOLVE: Vampire Stories of the New Undead nominated for the Stoker award
  • GASLIGHT ARCANUM: UNCANNY TALES OF SHERLOCK HOLMES cover artist Dave Elsey wins Academy Award
Without any further ado welcome Brian!

An Interview With EDGE Science Fiction
and Fantasy Publishing's Brian Hades

SFG: Looking back over the past 10 years, what would you say stands out as Edge's greatest highlight or proudest moment so far?

Brian-Hades-2There are quite a few highlights. Perhaps the one thing I'm most proud of is our commitment to making the Tesseracts anthology series an annual production.  Pulling together the editors, authors and production team to make it happen year after year without fail is a dream come true.  Others have tried and failed.  We have succeeded and "Tesseracts Fifteen: A Case of Quite Curious Tales"  (Fall 2011) will be our 7th volume in a row!

tesseracts 14
[SFG Editors Note -Since its inception, the Tesseracts anthology has featured 344 short works and more than 200 Canadian authors, editors and translators –including such well known writers as Margaret Atwood, Robert J. Sawyer, Spider Robinson, and William Gibson, to name a few. Source – Nina Munteanu at The Writing Life]

SFG: How was Edge Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing conceived? How did you decide you wanted to be a genre publisher?

Brian-Hades-2I became fascinated with Science Fiction when I was a kid.  Over my lifetime I found that I'm best at "producing" things.  Taking raw materials, raw talent, raw ideas and making them into something that, in the end, is much bigger than the sum of its parts.  I have a background in theatre, music, magic, innovation, invention and publishing, so when Lynn Jennyc introduced herself to the publisher's breakfast club a dozen years ago and mentioned that she was interested in publishing SF, I jumped at the opportunity to start EDGE.  Of course it wasn't EDGE until we sat down and brainstormed hundreds of other ideas... but in the end the name EDGE came to me in a late night "inspiration".  
I've always wondered why the companies who show off their products at trade shows never adequately explained what they did / offered / provided, so when it came time to settle on the imprint name it had to be "EDGE Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing" so there would be no confusion about what we did.  The same thoughts went into the naming of our website:

SFG: What is the biggest challenge for a Canadian publisher? Opportunity?

Brian-Hades-2The biggest challenge for a Canadian publisher is placing books into bookstores. Canada is a geographically diverse country with pockets of population spread out across the width of the country and vast areas of empty countryside populated with small towns in between.  However the bigger challenge has been bootstrapping the publishing company without any outside investors.  EDGE was started by contributing 100.00 a month into a startup fund for two years.  So, with 2,400.00 in hand (and a credit card that had room for 5,000.00 of debt) we produced "The Black Chalice", a hard black chalicebound, short run, first edition.  We are very proud of that first book - which has gone on to be published in four other editions and created a fan base for the author, Marie Jakober (who by the way, is the author of "The Demon Left Behind" - coming out in May of this year).  Now that we have a track record and some solid titles and authors within our stable, we can entertain thoughts of taking on investors, partners, co-publishers, etc.

The opportunities that present themselves to us today are enormous.  We actively solicit submissions from new and seasoned authors and have managed to find some gems along the way (watch for "Technicolor Ultra Mall" by Ryan Oakley in the Fall).  More of our books are being picked up by other publishers (such as "Time Machines Repaired While-U-Wait" - which was picked up by Fremantle Press, an Australian Publisher) and we've optioned a few titles for Hollywood's consideration.

SFG: Where do you see Edge 10 years from now?

Brian-Hades-2In the past ten years we've gone from publishing our first (and only) book that year to having published a total of 120 titles (55 titles under the EDGE imprint, 35 titles under the Tesseracts imprint and 30 titles under the Absolute XPress imprint) which is nearly a doubling of output for every year after the first two start up years.  I do not expect to keep up to that rate of growth, but I do see that we will be steadily introducing more and more titles and authors over time.  We are embracing new digital technologies such as the production and delivery of e-books as well as investigating other avenues for storytelling.  Ultimately, we are a means to a storyteller's end!

SFG: What's coming up in the next 12 months that you are excited about?

Brian-Hades-2With the introduction of Tesseracts Thirteen's horror theme, we've become fascinated with producing dark fantasy and horror titles.  Nancy Kilpatrick has been instrumental in giving us direction in a genre that we had little to do with prior to 2009.  We have started an annual anthology of Canadian horror fiction, "Chilling Tales", edited by Michael Kelly. The first volume is due out in March. Nancy Kilpatrick is editing "EVOLVE Two: Vampire Stories of the Future Undead".  And, we have a new anthology of Sherlockian stories, "Gaslight Arcanum: Uncanny Tales of Sherlock Holmes" edited by J. R. Campbell and Charles Prepolec, on the go.

those who fight monstersWe are proud to be releasing Marie Jakober's Urban Fantasy "The Demon Left Behind" novel (in May)."Those Who Fight Monsters: Tales of Occult Detectives" edited by Justin Gustainis is an anthology featuring some of today's top Urban Fantasy authors which will be released in March. Fans of Barbara Galler-Smith and Josh Langston's historical fantasy Druids, will be delighted to know that Book Two: Captives will be released in May 2011.

"Circle Tide" (due out in August) is Rebecca Rowe's follow-up SF novel to "Forbidden Cargo" and we are releasing "Rigor Amortis" a zombie romance anthology, previously released under the Absolute XPress imprint, as an EDGE title - in October and just in time for All Hollow's Eve.

Although this all sounds like a commercial for what we are doing, I'm just very proud of the titles on the fall list.

There are even more titles on the Winter 2011 list and we have titles planned for Spring 2012. But you will have to wait to find out what they are!

This is an exciting time for us and I hope our fans and readers will continue to support our authors and our imprints by reading and talking about the books we produce.  Feedback is always welcome. Just email us at:

For more information about EDGE Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing's releases please visit

EDGE's Steam and Steel Social

Although the weather outside was icy cold, the atmosphere inside the Calgary Aerospace Museum, on November 20th, 2010 was warm and festive as over 200 of EDGE's authors, families, friends and supporters grabbed their goggles and gear and joined the crew from EDGE for the Steam and Steel Social to celebrate EDGE Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing's first decade of producing quality speculative fiction, fantasy and horror.

Our thanks to Professor D. G. Wilson and his "Wilson's Elixir of Wonder", the actors of Gas & Light Productions, slide guitar virtuoso Ellen McIlwaine, poet Christian Bök, storyteller Lana Skauge and accompanist Tom Doyle, and the parlor prestidigitation of Richard Rondeau for their stellar performances.

The evening wrapped up with Brian and Anita Hades selecting the Lord and Lady of the Ball from the many guests decked in their finest Steampunk costumes.

A fun time was had by all!


  1. Dear Mr. Hades,

    One of the things I cherish about small presses and why I purchase disproportionately from them is that they publish books that don't fit whatever trend mainstream publishers are slavering after at the moment. So I was disappointed to read that you are going to be publishing a lot more dark fantasy and horror, when—to my mind—there's already way too much on the bookstore shelves. If you don't mind, I would like to hear more about why you're taking EDGE in this direction.

    Thank for for providing books for the contest.

  2. Do you find that you have difficulty getting your books into the chain bookstores?

  3. I'd like to ask: what would you say makes Canadian science fiction stand out from that of the other countries?

    spamscape [at] gmail [dot] com

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