Archive for CONvergence

Next week in Minneapolis, we’ll be at CONvergence – one of the finest genre conventions in the world!

This is where you can find us:

The bar.

If we’re not there, chances are, we’re on or at a panel. These are the fine folk who will be there, and the panels they’re on:

Kameron Hurley (The Mirror Empire, Empire Ascendent)

Thursday 3 July
3.30pm – Good, Fast or Cheap
When does it make sense to work for exposure and when does that become exploitative? At what point do you need to insist on charging? What are the trade-offs when choosing between free and paid art? Panelists: Elizabeth Bear, Sharon Stiteler, Kameron Hurley, Michael Damian Thomas

7.00pm – Not Men or Women: Everyone Else in Fiction
Not all characters need to be male or female! Explore the gender binary and how it can be, and has been, subverted in fictional universes and in reality. We will discuss common tropes and ways gender could be explored better in all fictional media. Panelists: Elizabeth Bear, Haddayr Copley-Woods, Kimberley Long-Ewing, Benny S, Kameron Hurley

Friday 4 July
7.00pm – Where’s the Magic?
Increasingly, writers feel the need to include a scientific (or pseudoscientific) explanation for strange events and objects, rather than simply having a fantastical or magical explanation. Why is this the case? Does it work? Panelists: Kameron Hurley, Kelly McCullough, Sean M. Murphy, Doug Hulick, Martha Wells

Saturday 5 July
12.30pm – Criticism and Empathy Online
When people abuse anonymity to give hurtful, damaging criticism, is this merely a failure of empathy, or is there something more there? How do you criticize people without triggering a flame war? Should you even TRY to avoid flame wars? Panelists: Miri Mogilevsky, Jason Thibeault, Wesley Chu, Kameron Hurley, Ted Meissner

Anne Lyle (The Night’s Masque trilogy)

Saturday 5 July
10.00pm – Loki Can Rule Me Any Day
Loki is very popular, even though he wasn’t the main character (or even necessarily a “good guy”). An exploration of side characters who have become fan favorites. Wolverine, Agent Coulson, Jayne, Connie Mk II – What makes us like them so much? Panelists: Lyda Morehouse, Kamuran Paradis, Damarra Atkins, Todd Murray, Anne Lyle

11.30pm – Science of Sex
It’s a necessary biological function. What else can we say about it? Panelists: Bug Girl, Meghan Williams MA LMFT (mod), Anne Lyle, Heina Dadabhoy, Benny S

Wesley Chu (The Tao trilogy)

Friday 4 July
11.00am – Signing

Saturday 5 July
11.00am – Reading

12.30pm - Criticism and Empathy Online
When people abuse anonymity to give hurtful, damaging criticism, is this merely a failure of empathy, or is there something more there? How do you criticize people without triggering a flame war? Should you even TRY to avoid flame wars? Panelists: Miri Mogilevsky, Jason Thibeault, Wesley Chu, Kameron Hurley, Ted Meissner

Sunday 6 July
12.30pm – Writing Sequels – Deja vu or Level 2?
Sequels are usually considered the toughest books to tackle. Some series (Hunger Games) retread similar themes to give fans more of what made them love the first book. Others take the reader in new directions. What are the advantages and risks? Panelists: Wesley Chu, Scott Lynch, David Annandale, Kelly McCullough, C. Robert Cargill

Carrie Patel (The Buried Life, Cities & Thrones)

Thursday 3 July
2.00pm – Skiffy & Fanty Show – Live at CONvergence!
A live episode of the Skiffy & Fanty Show (skiffyandfanty.com) with guest authors CL Patel and Martha Wells. We’ll discuss influences on SF/F lit from gaming, comics, etc. with authors who write SF/F fiction but have experience writing for other formats. Panelists: Michael R. Underwood (mod), Carrie Patel, Martha Wells, David Annandale, Shaun Duke, Paul Weimer

Friday 4 July
9.30am – Hard SF Movies are Back!
With the recent releases of “Gravity” and “Ender’s Game,” hard SF movies are back. Will this trend last? Panelists: Romeo Azar, Mark McPherson, Dave Margosian, Carrie Patel

2.00pm – You Against the Game
Not all of us like competing against each other. What are good games that have the players work against the game? Lord of the Rings and Pandemic are two examples: there must be more. Panelists: Craig A. Finseth, Walter Sullivan, Michael Black, Dave Benhart, Carrie Patel

Sunday 6 July
9.30am – Oregon Trail… WITH ZOMBIES!
Bloods, brains, and dysentery! Come join us as we cross the zombie wasteland of Organ Trail, the zombie-based parody of Oregon Trail. Panelists: Michael Black, Karl Tingelstad, Sam Wroge, Carrie Patel

Craig Cormick (The Shadow Master, The Floating City)

Thursday 3 July
10.00m – Ultimate Evil Overlord 101
An interactive guide to becoming the ultimate evil overlord – with audience participation. Panelists: Naomi Kritzer, Brian Salisbury, Craig Cormick, Laura Thurston, Christoforo Pasquarette

Friday 4 July
9.30am – Can Sci-Fi Keep Up?
Is sci-fi able to keep up with technology? Snow Crash and Necromancer are already outdated, to give just a few examples. Does technology move faster than our imaginations? Panelists: Lee Harris, Craig Cormick, Pete Hautman, Tyler Tork, Eric Staggs

11.00am – Good Tech, Evil Tech
When in our stories did technology shift from being the answer to being the problem? Is it cyclical? We’ll discuss examples and trends in books, TV, and movies. Panelists: Emmy Jackson, Craig Cormick, Regan Wolfrom, Ozgur K. Sahin, Christoforo Pasquarette

Martha Wells (Emilie and the Hollow World, Emilie and the Sky World)

Thursday 3 July
2.00pm - Skiffy & Fanty Show – Live at CONvergence!
A live episode of the Skiffy & Fanty Show (skiffyandfanty.com) with guest authors CL Patel and Martha Wells. We’ll discuss influences on SF/F lit from gaming, comics, etc. with authors who write SF/F fiction but have experience writing for other formats. Panelists: Michael R. Underwood (mod), Carrie Patel, Martha Wells, David Annandale, Shaun Duke, Paul Weimer

5.00pm – Reading

Friday 4 July
7.00pm – Where’s the Magic?
Increasingly, writers feel the need to include a scientific (or pseudoscientific) explanation for strange events and objects, rather than simply having a fantastical or magical explanation. Why is this the case? Does it work? Panelists: Kameron Hurley, Kelly McCullough, Sean M. Murphy, Doug Hulick, Martha Wells

8.30pm – Signing

Saturday 5 July
11.00am – Once Upon a Story – Exploring Fairy Tales in Popular Culture
What do NBC’s Grimm, Willingham’s “Fables” and Disney have in common? They all propel fantastical stories of antiquity into modern times. Explore where we’ve come from and where we’re going in myth, fairytale, and folklore. Panelists: Dana Baird, Christine Norris, Emma Bull, Roy T Cook, Martha Wells

Sunday 6 July
2.00pm – Women in Genre Not Talking about Women in Genre
Panelists talk about everything EXCEPT what it’s like to be a woman working in genre! Which is better, Star Wars or Star Trek? What YA series will be made into a TV show next? Audience questions will be drawn randomly and answered by the panelists. Panelists: Martha Wells, Damarra Atkins, Lynne M. Thomas, Danielle Indovino, Naomi Kritzer

Mike Underwood (Angry Robot’s Sales & Marketing Manager, also l33t geek-novelist)

Thursday 3 July
12.30pm – Mainstreaming of Geekdom
Lots of popular movies are based on geek stuff. How do you handle being a geek hipster – or feeling like you don’t fit in? Many people were geeks before it was cool. Let’s stop feeling bad. Let’s celebrate that geeks are cool! Panelists: Jaqueline Stoner, Hal Bichel, Kara Redding, Michael R. Underwood, Holley McLellan

2.00pm – Skiffy & Fanty Show – Live at CONvergence!
A live episode of the Skiffy & Fanty Show (skiffyandfanty.com) with guest authors CL Patel and Martha Wells. We’ll discuss influences on SF/F lit from gaming, comics, etc. with authors who write SF/F fiction but have experience writing for other formats. Panelists: Michael R. Underwood (mod), Carrie Patel, Martha Wells, David Annandale, Shaun Duke, Paul Weimer

Saturday 5 July
2.00pm – Gender in Urban Fantasy
This genre tends to have more female protagonists and writers. Is it marketing, or something else? Panelists: Melissa Olson, Emma Bull, Paul Cornell, Laura Zats, Michael R. Underwood

5.00pm – Is There Life after “Dark and Gritty”?
How did we get from Adam West to the Dark Knight? Can we reboot a series and make it more optimistic? Panelists: Scott Lynch, Sarah Prentice, Michael R. Underwood, Tabitha Anderson, Michael Damian Thomas

Sunday 6 July
2.00pm – From Gaming to Writing
Many novels started life as roleplaying games. Are you a GM using a game to figure out the world for your novel? Or have you had such a great time running or playing in a game that you’re working on making it into a book? What are the perils and pitfalls? Panelists: Elizabeth Bear, David Annandale, Ozgur K. Sahin, Michael R. Underwood, Emmy Jackson

Lee Harris (Angry Robot’s Senior Editor)

Thursday 3 July
10.00pm – Just a Minute
Paul Cornell will once again host his favorite game of talking and thinking at the same time. The combination is something most of us aren’t particularly used to. Panelists: Paul Cornell, Eryn Hildebrand, Dawn Krosnowski, Scott Lynch, C. Robert Cargill. Lee Harris keeps time.

Friday 4 July
9.30am – Can Sci-Fi Keep Up?

Is sci-fi able to keep up with technology? Snow Crash and Necromancer are already outdated, to give just a few examples. Does technology move faster than our imaginations? Panelists: Lee Harris, Craig Cormick, Pete Hautman, Tyler Tork, Eric Staggs

11.00am – Reading

5.00pm – Best Urban Fantasy Books
The genre is broad and contains a lot of different storytelling styles. What are some of your favorites? Panelists: Lee Harris, David Lenander, Robert Wagner, Renate Fiora (mod)

Saturday 5 July
3.30pm – Agents of SHIELD Fan Panel
Agent Coulson is alive – or is he? What are your hopes for season 2? How did season 1 stack up to the stable of Marvel movies currently overseen by Joss Whedon? Panelists: David Schwartz, Lee Harris, Derek Mahr, Scott Pearson, Daren Johnson

5.00pm – How to Structure a Novel
What are the required elements? How do you use your geeky experiences to fashion your characters, plot, and themes? Panelists: Elizabeth Bear, Will Shetterly, Kelly McCullough, David Annandale, Lee Harris

7.00pm – Cover Art for your Ebook
How to avoid the common mistakes of ebook cover art. Why it’s important and how to get free or low cost cover art that will help sell your ebook. Important points about art contracts and negotiating. Talk to professional writers, artists, and publishers. Panelists: John Garner, Adam Whitlatch, Lee Harris, Blake Hausladen, J Steven Young

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