Stephen King and twitterers win at the 2009 Bram Stoker Awards ceremony

Modern technology defeated the undead as the members of the Horror Writers Association gathered in Burbank, Calif., to hand out the organization's 2009 Bram Stoker Awards for Superior Achievement. That's because when HWA's planned streaming video feed was canceled at the last minute due to technical difficulties, it was left to the twitterers present to report on the event and spread word of the results.

As one twitterer in attendance tweeted: "You need our tweets more than ever!"

Due to this year's California locale, members of the Hollywood community were in attendance at the banquet to help celebrate horror's best. They included Doug Jones (Pan's Labyrinth, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer) and Patricia Tallman (Babylon 5, Army of Darkness).

Master of ceremonies Jeff Strand presided over the evening, pretending to tweet between categories.

This year's winners were:

Superior Achievement in a Poetry Collection: The Nightmare Collection by Bruce Boston (Dark Regions Press)

Superior Achievement in Nonfiction: A Hallowe'en Anthology by Lisa Morton (McFarland)

Superior Achievement in an Anthology: Unspeakable Horror edited by Vince A. Liaguno and Chad Helder (Dark Scribe Press)

Superior Achievement in a Collection: Just After Sunset by Stephen King (Scribner)

Superior Achievement in Short Fiction: "The Lost" by Sarah Langan (Cemetery Dance Publications)

Specialty Press Award: Larry and Debra Roberts for Bloodletting Press

Superior Achievement in Long Fiction: Miranda by John R. Little (Bad Moon Books)

Superior Achievement in a First Novel: The Gentling Box by Lisa Mannetti (Dark Hart Press)

Superior Achievement in a Novel: Duma Key by Stephen King (Scribner).

Additionally, HWA's Silver Hammer Award was given to Sephera Giron, while the Richard Laymon President's Award was presented to John R. Little.

The biggest winners of the night, though, had to be F. Paul Wilson and Chelsea Quinn Yarbro, who were given Lifetime Achievement Awards, joining previous winners such as Stephen King, Anne Rice and F. Paul Wilson. Wilson and Yarbro are each responsible for creating an iconic horror character: mercenary Repairman Jack and vampire Count Saint-Germain, respectively.

The 2010 Bram Stoker Awards will be handed out in conjunction with next year's World Horror Con in Brighton, England.

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