The World Horror Society has named Austin, Texas as the location for the 2011 World Horror Convention (WHC). The international gathering of horror’s brightest talents and their fans will take place from April 28th through May 1st, 2011.

Austin, Texas was chosen for its unique style and rich genre history. The original Texas Chainsaw Massacre was filmed near the city, and the remakes of both Chainsaw Massacre and Friday the 13th were filmed in town. Austin also serves as home to the largest urban bat colony in North America, and at sunset 1.5 million bats fly over the city, truly marking it as a horror locale. (There’s a reason the city’s motto is “Keep Austin Weird.”)

“Texas has a long history of strange fiction, serving as home to such luminaries as Robert E. Howard, Michael Moorcock, and Joe R. Lansdale,” says Convention Co-Chair, Nate Southard. “Bringing the World Horror Convention to Austin is a natural. It’s a vibrant city with a taste for the eccentric and a love of the arts. Further, its central, southern location makes it convenient for travelers throughout the US, and visitors from abroad will have no trouble reaching us either.”

Known as both the Capital of Texas and the Live Music Capital of the World, Austin provides the entertainment and cultural draws of a large city with the intimacy of a small town. This smaller size translates to ease of transportation in and around the city with many opportunities for convention attendees to absorb what Austin has to offer.

Convention Chairs, Southard and Lee Thomas, promise to bring the convention back to the US in style. Focusing on literary horror’s newest stars, WHC 2011 has already confirmed author Sarah Langan as its first Guest of Honor.

“We couldn’t be more pleased,” Lee Thomas, Co-Chair of the event, said. “Sarah was at the top of our list, and her enthusiastic agreement to attend really set the tone for what we hope to achieve with this convention. We’ll be inviting additional industry luminaries, and we’ll make announcements when those folks are confirmed.”

Ms. Langan’s first novel, The Keeper, was named a New York Times editor’s choice. Her second novel, The Missing, won the Bram Stoker Award for outstanding novel and earned an American Library Association Award. Her third novel, Audrey’s Door, will be released in late 2009 and has already been optioned by the Weinstein Company for film.

Additional Guests of Honor, registration information, and hotel information will be forthcoming. A website featuring convention information is currently in development.

The World Horror Convention is an annual gathering of professionals in the horror industry; publishers, authors, artists, musicians, filmmakers, dealers and, of course, horror fans. WHC serves as both an industry insider’s networking event and a chance for fans of the genre to get together, meet some of the creative talents in the field, and generally spend a weekend celebrating All Things Scary.

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