U of M prof creates for popular “Warhammer 40,000” series

Lovecraftian horror melds with fantasy in Annandale’s work

Many of you know David Annandale as a film studies professor with a passion for genre fiction and video games, but did you also know he is a regular contributor to Black Library’s Warhammer 40,000 novels?

Annandale has written four novels, “at least one novella” and various short stories of his own. He has written so extensively for Games Workshop, the company that owns Black Library, he has lost count of how many stories he has written.

“I think we’re upwards of 25 now, but I’d have to sit down and do a count,” said Annandale.

Warhammer 40,000, also known as 40k, is an epic gothic science fiction universe with decades of novels, gamebooks and expansions to flesh out an ever-expanding story. The book series is published by Black Library, the publication arm of Games Workshop.

Games Workshop is a tabletop gaming company which began in the 1970s and developed in conjunction with the popularity of Dungeons & Dragons in the United Kingdom. Warhammer 40,000 is one of Games Workshop’s many popular series.

The popularity of tabletop gaming has only increased in recent years with over 460 stores around the world. Over the past two years alone, Games Workshop’s shares have risen by 660 per cent, according to a 2018 article from the Economist.

“One of the things that I love about the universes of Games Workshop, both the Warhammer 40,000 and the Age of Sigmar […] one is more or less science fiction, the other is more or less fantasy, but they’re also kind of a genre collision, so you have military fiction and horror and everything, and just about all the genres I love in one place,” said Annandale.

Annadale has written short stories and published horror novels throughout his life. His own works include several horror stories such as Gethsemane Hall and the Jen Blaylock thrillers.

He was not initially a big fan of tabletop games until he began writing for Black Library.

“I came to Warhammer via the fiction — that kind of dark military, Lovecraftian horror mixture really spoke to me,” said Annandale.

“Around the time I was really getting into the fiction was also when an open call happened for submissions.”

He became a regular contributor to Black Library.

The process for writing in an environment where dozens of authors, game developers and miniature sculptors create interwoven stories can be complicated.

“The editor who bought [my first] story said ‘We’d be interested in seeing more of your stuff,’ so I put together a novel pitch,” said Annandale.

This pitch would eventually become Annandale’s Death of Antigonis. Since his first pitch, Annandale has been given assignments for his Black Library works. Annandale contributes works to specific series, as well as writing stories around particular characters within Games Workshop’s fictional universes, all the while staying true to what other creators have already contributed to these worlds.

Annandale has written works from the Horus Heresy series and The Beast Arises series among many others.

He will soon find out his latest assignment with Black Library.


His body of work can be found on his website  davidannandale.com as well as on Amazon. All his contributions to Warhammer 40,000 and Age of Sigmar are available at blacklibrary.com/authors/david-annandale.