Alan Baxter is a Ditmar Award-nominated British-Australian author. He writes horror, dark fantasy and sci-fi, rides a motorcycle and loves his dog. He also teaches Kung Fu. He is the author of the dark fantasy thriller novels, RealmShift and MageSign, co-authored the short horror novel, Dark Rite, with David Wood, and has around 50 short stories published in a variety of journals and anthologies in Australia, the US, the UK and France, including the Year’s Best Australian Fantasy & Horror (twice – 2010 & 2012). In 2013, Alan won the Australian Horror Writers’ Association Short Story competition. Alan is represented by literary agent, Alex Adsett, of Alex Adsett Publishing Services. As well as fiction, Alan is a freelance writer, penning reviews, feature articles and opinion. He’s a contributing editor and co-founder at Thirteen O’Clock, Australian Dark Fiction News & Reviews, and co-hosts Thrillercast, a thriller and genre fiction podcast. He is director and Chief Instructor of the Illawarra Kung Fu Academy. Read extracts from his novels, a novella and short stories at his website – www.alanbaxteronline.com – or find him on Twitter @AlanBaxter and Facebook, and feel free to tell him what you think. About anything.
(Click on the headshot for a higher res version if needed for promo, or click the image in the right sidebar if you prefer (like I do) the moody graveyard shot.)
Click here for a full(ish) Bibliography.
I’m available for panel appearances, keynote speeches, workshops and more. I am an experienced public speaker and workshop presenter. I’m always keen to address any group on a wide variety of subjects. My most popular workshop is Write The Fight Right, for writers who want to improve their fight and action scenes. I have also presented talks, keynotes and workshops on the following subjects: Short story writing; Genre fiction – fantasy, science fiction and horror; Social media for authors – building an author platform; Traditional vs Self-publishing and the hybrid model; Self-publishing pros, cons and methods; and more.
If you’re interested to have me as part of a panel or to present a keynote or workshop, please get in touch.
Here’s the more detailed version of my bio:
I’m an optimistic cynic and dark speculative fiction author, living on the South Coast of New South Wales, Australia. I write primarily in the horror, fantasy and sci-fi genres and my stuff is usually based in the magical, supernatural and arcane, the creepy and the monstrous, and consequences seem to be a recurring theme. I often like to play with various religious (and other) mythologies in my fiction. And it always seems to be dark. Even stories that I think are going to be lighter fare end up a bit disturbing. Above all, I try to tell a good yarn, but I would also like to make people think.
I currently have two novels published, RealmShift and its sequel, MageSign, through Gryphonwood Press. Both are dark fantasy thrillers. Learn all about them by clicking the Books button above or click on any book covers you see. I have more novels in the works. I’ve also written a bunch of short stories, published in various places in print and online. You can find a full Bibliography of my work by clicking the button at the top.
As well as my fiction writing, you can find a variety of my other stuff at a variety of places. Most of my non-fiction writing is based around the speculative fiction genre, writing and publishing in general, health and fitness, martial arts, music and movies. I still write or have written for:
S F Signal – Hugo Award winning SF zine
Crikey – Now with extra source
The Punch – Australia’s best conversation
Metal As Fuck – Heavy metal zine
Player Magazine – New Zealand based sports glossy mag
arts NAKED – Australian based online review magazine
OpEd Magazine – World Writings based on a word
Publetariat.com – Indie publishing
Publishing Renaissance – Indie publishing
Cyberkwoon.com – Martial arts community website
I’m a member of the Australian Horror Writers Association, International Thriller Writers, The Canberra Speculative Fiction Guild, Australian Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers Association and the Clan Destine Portal.
This website serves two main purposes. One is shameless self-promotion where I can write about my writing and let people know where to find newly published stuff. You can find some of my short stories here. There’s a serialised novella called Ghost Of The Black: A ‘Verse Full of Scum here. You can also get an ebook version of that story if you prefer. I plan to write more in that series as time allows. You can also download the first three chapters of RealmShift and MageSign in PDF format for a sneak preview.
The second purpose of this website is the blog. As well as my own news, I ramble on about anything writing, publishing or story-related. I take the opportunity to lampoon idiocy, especially the word abuse so prevalent in our society. Our world has been built on a foundation of story-telling, from the earliest creation myths to the modern parables found in books and movies, on television shows and the Internet. These days story-telling is all around us, in numerous mediums, and I love them all.
My first novel, RealmShift, was originally self-published in early 2006 to considerable critical acclaim. I started the traditional way, scored a very good agent and the book was nearly bought by a big publisher, but it all fell over at the eleventh hour. Rather than start that process again, I decided to self-publish to see what kind of reviews and reaction it would get while I got on with writing the sequel. The response was very positive and I’d enjoyed the indie publishing process. So, with generous help from others, I set up an independent publishing company Blade Red Press in 2008 and re-issued RealmShift as a new edition along with the sequel, MageSign. They both did pretty well. Now both books have been acquired by Gryphonwood Press. It’s a funny old world.
I still run Blade Red Press, which operates as a kind of collective indie press, and we’ve released our first short story anthology, Dark Pages, and a collection by Aussie author Bill Congreve called Souls Along The Meridian. They’re both great books – check the Blade Red site for details. (NB: Blade Red Press is currently on hiatus as my own writing has to take priority.)
RealmShift and MageSign are both available in print, ebook and audio, from Amazon and all good book stores. Check the Books page or click on book covers for previews, reviews and all that jazz.
I also co-host the ThrillerCast podcast with fellow author, David Wood. We talk about all things related to reading and writing in thriller and genre fiction. Learn all about that here.
And I’m co-founder (with Felicity Dowker and Andrew McKiernan) and contributing editor at Thirteen O’Clock, Australian Dark Fiction News and Reviews. You can find that here.
As for other things that fulfill my life, I’m a Kung Fu Instructor and Personal Trainer. Helping people get themselves in shape and live longer, healthier lives is an extremely satisfying way to earn a living (which is good because writing alone doesn’t pay all the bills just yet). I’ve been a martial artist for as long as I can remember and can’t imagine a life without Kung Fu. I run the Illawarra Kung Fu Academy.
I also enjoy photography and music. I play guitar (fairly badly). I was in a band for some years, but not any more. There’s simply not enough hours in a day or days in a week to do all the things that I’d like to do.
I’m a keen motorcyclist. There is no better way to travel as far as I’m concerned and no better way to see a place. I’ve done thousands of kilometres all over Australia and Europe. My next big plan is to ride across the Nullabor. It’s just one of those things that needs to be done.
I also have a deep affinity for dogs. My own dog, Penry, is a complete legend.
And finally I should mention my long-suffering, ever-supportive wife, Halinka. Other than publicly thanking Halinka for putting up with me, I want to give her a free plug. She’s an outstanding artist and you can see her work on her website, halinka.com.au.