Keynote Speakers

Dr Stacey Abbott

Reader in Film and Television Studies
Department of Media, Culture and Language
University of Roehampton


Dr Abbott's main research interests surround genre cinema and television, with particular expertise in the horror genre and the vampire in film and television. She has also done extensive research around Cult and American Quality Television, by looking at the cult series Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Alias, Firefly, Lost, Supernatural, True Blood and Torchwood. Other interests include genre theory, silent cinema, romantic comedy, science fiction, special effects, and Canadian cinema.


Dr. Abbott's most recent publications include: Undead Apocalypse: Vampires and Zombies in the 21st Century (Edinburgh University Press, 2016), TV Horror: Investigating the Dark Side of the Small Screen (I.B. Tauris, 2013), co-written with Lorna Jowett from the University of Northampton; Supernatural: TV Goes to Hell (ECW Press, 2011), co-edited with David Lavery; and the sole authored Angel: TV Milestone (Wayne State University Press, 2009) and Celluloid Vampires: Life After Death in the Modern World (University of Texas Press, 2007). She is currently guest editing, with Lorna Jowett and Michael Starr, a special issue of the journal Horror Studies on the Vampire on television and is writing about televisual horror adaptations such as Penny Dreadful and Hannibal.


Professor Donna Lee Brien

Professor of Creative Industries
School of Education and Arts
Central Queensland University


Donna Lee Brien is Professor of Creative Industries at Central Queensland University, in Noosa, Australia. Her research focus lies at the nexus of writing and publishing, popular culture, and contemporary Gothic Studies. Widely published in these areas, as well as specialist subgenres of non-fiction writing, Prof. Brien has been writing about memoir and other life writing since 1999. Her biography, John Power 1881-1943, is the standard work on this expatriate Australian artist.


Prof. Brien's interests are in all areas of creative writing, editing and publishing, both fiction and non-fiction. She is especially interested in the publishing end of the process, including producing work with publication in mind, and the ways to be published in the 21st century.


Mark Wallbank

Founder of Haunted Auckland


Mark Wallbank is the founder of New Zealand based paranormal research group, Haunted Auckland, and has been fascinated in all aspects of the paranormal spectrum his entire life. Since the early 80s, Mark has been an experimental electronic musician, ran a music / events label and retail outlet, published two indie music magazines, has been a research consultant, worked in the print industry, photographer, social networker, a collector of creepy things, public speaker. He has written two books on the paranormal subject, with a third on the way, plus many articles and reviews for numerous print and online magazines through the years.


Mark doesn't consider himself a ''believer'', more an open minded agnostic who has experienced enough in his life to realise that there is definitely something to all this: it isn't all delusion, and research is very much worthy and valid. His tireless research has led him all over New Zealand as well as exploration and investigation internationally.




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