Named for Dracula’s creator, the Bram Stoker award has been presented annually since 1988 by the Horror Writers Association in recognition of “superior achievement” in the horror genre. The award is an eight-inch model of a whimsical haunted house designed by sculptor Steven Kirk. The door opens to disclose a miniature brass plaque bearing the title of the winning work and its author’s name. Award categories have changed over the years. Presently, these categories are:
- First Novel
- Short Fiction
- Long Fiction
- Fiction Collection
- Poetry Collection
For 2006, these were the winners; the awards were presented March 30, 2007:
Novel: Lisey's Story by Stephen King
Lisey Landon, the widow of award-winning novelist Scott Landon, realizes, as she cleans her late husband’s study, that there's much she doesn’t know about his past, and, with the help of Dooley, an eccentric acquaintance, Lisey must figure out what she’s hidden from herself (and what Scott has planned for her) if she's to remain alive.
First Novel: Ghost Road Blues by Jonathan Maberry
Pine Deep, Pennsylvania, is a small town under attack from within and from without. The novel in which the small town is featured, although it comprises a self-contained story, is the first in a trilogy, which fans and fellow horror writers compare to Stephen King’s The Stand, Dean Koontz’s Whispers, and Robert McCammon’s Boy’s Life. The book’s bad guys? A serial killer, a ghost, a pair of wicked mechanics, madness, greed, sexual repression, religious fanaticism, and fear. Ghost Road Blues’ sequels are Dead Man’s Song and Bad Moon Rising. Its author, 49-year-old Jonathan Maberry, maintains a MySpace site.
Long Fiction: Dark Harvest by Norman Partridge
A scarecrow-like monster rises, like the Great Pumpkin, from a cornfield on Halloween to test the mettle of the boys who reside in the small town nearby.
Short Fiction: "Tested" by Lisa Morton
Fiction Collection: Destinations Unknown by Gary Braunbeck
Anthology: Retro Pulp Tales edited by Joe Lansdale and Mondo Zombie edited by John Skipp (tie)
Nonfiction: Final Exits: The Illustrated Encyclopedia of How We Die by Michael Largo and Gospel of the Living Dead: George Romero's Vision of Hell on Earth by Kim Paffenroth (tie)
Final Exits is a book of trivia concerning death and dying, replete with typographic errors and factual mistakes. Gospel of the Living Dead analyzes the symbolism and themes of George Romero’s zombie movies.
Poetry Collection: Shades Fantastic by Bruce Boston
Speciality Press Award: PS Publishing
Lifetime Achievement Award: Thomas Harris.