Tag Archive for lunacon

Lunacon Schedule

Lunacon is this weekend. On a good day, it's less than an hour from where I live, so I'll be commuting to the con. My schedule is:

What Are the Hugo Awards and Why You Should Care
Andrew Porter, Susan de Guardiola, Neil Clarke, Sharon Sbarsky, Arthur D. Hlavaty
Sat 10:00 – 11:00, Westchester Ballroom A3

Which eReader is Right for You?
Laura Anne Gilman, Dennis McCunney, Adam Reuter, Neil Clarke, Robert A. Rosenberg
Sat 13:00 – 14:00, Westchester Ballroom A2

DRM: Threat or Menace?
Rebecca Maines, Glenn Hauman, Dennis McCunney, Adam Reuter,Neil Clarke
Sat 16:00 – 17:00, Westchester Ballroom A2

The Art of Rejection
Hildy Silverman, Darrell Schweitzer, Neil Clarke, Laura Anne Gilman, Ian Randal Strock
Sat 18:00 – 19:00, Westchester Ballroom A1

The First One's Free

Carole Bugge, Dennis McCunney, Adam Reuter, Neil Clarke, Hank Quense

Sun 12:00 – 13:00, Westchester Ballroom A3

My Lunacon Schedule

Looking forward to Lunacon this weekend. After some discussion about my schedule, it has settled out as…

Reward Is It’s Own Success

Saturday 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
Genre awards and contests are their own reward, but they are also designed to encourage excellence in genre fiction.  What are some of these awards and how do they help new writers get recognized?  Do they truly help bring new talent into the spotlight or is the message lost in the noise?
Neil Clarke, Esther Friesner, Jeff Lyman, John Grant [M], Andrew Porter

To E- or Not to E-
Saturday 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM
A lively (and hopefully friendly!) discussion between print and epublishers as they discuss the merits and flaws of both kinds of publishing as well as the effect e-publishing can have on the industry, both now and in the future.
Neil Clarke, Jean Elizabeth Krevor, Edmund Meskys, Lawrence M. Schoen, Hildy Silverman [M]

Size Doesn’t Matter: The Impact of Small Genre Press
Saturday 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM
More and more authors are getting their start in small press publications, and more established writers are contributing to small press to broaden their audience.  What are the benefits and detriments of small press publishing?  Where do you find good small press?  Can you, should you, start your own? 
Neil Clarke, Lawrence M. Schoen, Ian Randal Strock, Michael Walsh [M], Gordon Van Gelder

Short Fiction and Its 9 Lives
Saturday 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Though some have been predicting its demise for years, why hasn’t short fiction died yet? Are we really entering into a new golden age for short fiction?
James Chambers, Neil Clarke [M], Keith DeCandido, Marvin Kaye, Ian Randal Strock

Butchering Your Own Baby
Sunday 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
For many people, editing can be the most difficult part of the writing process. How do we go about editing our work?
Ellen Asher, Neil Clarke [M], Nathan Lilly, Ian Randal Strock, Ben Yalow

The Future of Genre Fiction Magazines
Sunday 2:00 PM -  3:00 PM
Genre magazines have been a vital lifeline for science fiction and fantasy authors to get their work to the public. But in a changing world increasingly filed with technology, what does the future hold? Which magazines are likely to survive the economic downturn, and why? Are there still enough readers out there to keep these magazines publishing?
Neil Clarke, Edmund Meskys, Hildy Silverman [M]

See some of you there!

Lunacon 2009 Schedule

I’ll be attending Lunacon in Rye Brook, NY later this month and have been scheduled for the following panels:

The Future of Short Fiction (Saturday 10-11am)
There have been troubling signs recently, like the loss of Realms of Fantasy, F&SF switching to a bi-monthly schedule, and declining subscriptions. At the same time, there’s the rise of online magazines, the recent rebirth of anthology series, and more. How is the short fiction landscape in SFF changing.
Linda Anfuso, Neil Clarke[M], Marvin Kaye, Hildy Silverman, Shane Tourtellotte

The State of Small Press Publishing (Saturday 11am-12pm)
Are the small mammals nipping at the heels of the dinosaurs? With the NY publishing houses being much more selective, more is falling onto the small press and several of them are doing quite well.
Neil Clarke[M], Robert Katz, Lawrence M. Schoen, Michael Walsh, Ben Yalow

Magazine Editors’ Roundtable (Saturday 12-1pm)
What are magazine editors looking for, what are they seeing too much of, what annoys them, and what makes some writers a pleasure to work with.
Christopher Cevasco, Neil Clarke, Wendy S. Delmater, Marvin Kaye, Hildy Silverman, Gordon Van Gelder[M]

Online Fiction (Sunday 1-2pm)
Where are the places to find good short stories, novels, etc. There are a number of SFWA pro markets publishing online, Tor made a big jump into the field this year with Tor.com and free novels, authors like Tobias Buckell, Charles Stross, and Cory Doctorow giving books away for free… there is a lot for people who are reading on a budget!
Neil Clarke, Laura Anne Gilman, Nathan Lilly[M]

Anyone else going to be there?

Day Trip to Lunacon

I hadn’t been planning on going to Lunacon, but it’s only an hour and fifteen minutes from home and we didn’t have plans for Saturday. Despite some confusion on the Cross County Parkway, I eventually arrived at the con around noon and registered for the day. I put out postcards for Clarkesworld, Realms, Shriek, and Memorare and then headed off to the dealer’s room where I spent more time talking than browsing. In the ten hours I was there, I only managed to get to three panels: 

The Secret Handshake: Part joke, part reality. A look into how authors land their deals. Amusing and informative.
The State of Short Fiction: Typical is short fiction dead or dieing topic but well-managed by having a well-balance set of panelists who represented a print magazine (Realms of Fantasy), online magazine (Abyss and Apex), and someone who had worked on anthologies in the past. I don’t usually see these this balanced.
The Whole is Greater than the Sum of its Parts: What makes a good anthology, how they sell and once again, is the short story dieing. Unfortunately there wasn’t that big a crowd and only a few questions.

The rest of the time was spent at the bar or at some of the con parties. It’s always nice to run into Joshua Palmatier, Patricia Bray, Jennifer Dunne, and Sam Butler. A lot of my bar/party time was spent with them. I also had the pleasure of meeting Wendy Delmater (from Abyss and Apex) and chatted with her for a while about online magazines, life in general, and jokes.

Lunacon may not be my kind of con (I lean more towards the literary, not so much the gaming, filking, and costumes), but I had a great time and wish I could have spent more time there.

Lunacon – Day Two

I arrived Saturday and headed off to the Children’s Fantasy panel. I don’t read much children’s fantasy, so I thought it would be informative. Several names were mentioned, but what I found interesting was the discussion of adult readers of children’s fantasy and how they tend to be the primary readers of some of the older children’s fantasy. Hadn’t really thought about it, but based on a what I see kids reading, it makes sense.

After the panel, I caught up with yuki_onna and she signed a stack of books for me. We talked a bit about the new book (mentioned in the day 1 report).

By the time I was done getting the box of books out to the car, it was time for the next panel, Creating Fantasy Characters with Virginia McMorrow and Alma Alexander (anghara). I find the process of how people come up with their stories fascinating and these two writers develop characters and let the story happen around them. This seems to be the case with a lot of authors I’ve spoken to recently. This panel was actually in one of the cafe rooms, so it was a bunch of people sitting on the two beds. Very different.

I ended up hanging around the dealer’s room for a while and ran into C. J. Henderson and Patrick Thomas at a table C.J. was manning. They had copies of their new anthology Hear them Roar on hand, so I picked up a few for the store. Several contributors were at the con, so my copies ended up with a bunch of signatures. I talked with Patrick for a while about his Murphy’s Lore books, so I’ll be in touch with Padwolf Publishing soon to catch up on what I missed. He also reminded me that I have to try to get more issues of Fantastic Stories of the Imagination for the store.

The next panel was The State of Small Press Publishing. I deal with a lot of small press publishers, so I always find these panels interesting. The panelists were a mix of editors and authors with small press connections. It didn’t deal so much with the state of things, but it did hit upon a number of the common issues, like POD, self-publishing, and pros and cons of being with a small press. Someone in the audience tried to get them to turn to the zine side of the small press, but this was a bit outside their experience. Turns out it was the editor of Sybil’s Garage, a zine I sell, so I introduced myself afterwards and found out that the new issue is coming soon.

Humor in SF/F was next up. I went to this panel to laugh, and I did. I think the people with most amusing stories to tell were Jim Butcher and Esther M. Friesner. Jim revealed the origins of Bob the romance novel loving skull. Turns out that a teacher once told him to avoid two things: talking heads and “well, Bob, as you know”. He took them literally and made Bob. (Bob is a character in the Harry Dresden books.)

I scavanged some food from the con suite and went to the SF Poetry Reading which was not where it was supposed to be. I don’t write poetry. I rarely read it, but I discovered at ReaderCon that I enjoy listening to it. It was a small group, all talented, and there was a brief discussion about the markets that take and pay for poetry.

I decided that I’d go to jpsorrow‘s panel, The Language of Accomodation, next. This panel was interesting but much more scientific than it was billed. Two panelists did most of the talking, while two authors said the least. I think I would have enjoyed it more the other way around, but it was still holding my attention. The two primary speakers were Gregory Feeley and klingonguy, the latter being a linguist. (I didn’t realize it was him until much later.)

The rest of the evening was spent playing games with Joshua and Jennifer. Sam joined us on our search for food by way of the con parties. It wasn’t bad if you can live on chocolate, cheese and crackers. I can.

Lunacon – Day One

Lunacon was better than I remember it being years ago, but they seem eternally cursed to select bad hotels. The Hilton was in the middle of renovations that were supposed to be done two months ago. There were bare outlets and lighting fixtures, closed stairwells, open ceilings, cold wind blowing through the doors in some of the panel rooms, four rooms marked Cafe, unlabeled doors, and erratic heating. You really have to feel for the people who put this con together. They tried (with humor) to overcome and did about as well as you could hope for under the circumstances.

I arrived somewhere around three on Friday. (It’s 40 minutes from my house so I drove in each day.) I picked up my badge and began figuring out where all the rooms were. This was not as easy as you’d think given the lack of stairs and signs. On my journey, I ran into Jim and Shannon Butcher. We decided that this was probably the best time to have him sign books since, as Guest of Honor, his schedule was quite full for the weekend. I ran back down to the car, picked up two boxes of books, and headed back to his room. I have to say that they very nice people and I was particularly impressed when Jim offered to help me carry the boxes back down to my car. On the way, he told me about the Harry Dresden movie. Turns out that this is one of those rare occasions where the author is happy with the script and the way the movie has been going. This raises my hopes for this SciFi movie and the possibilities for a Dresden series.

On returning to the con, I ran into jpsorrow (Joshua) and jennifer-dunne. We made our way through the labyrinth and too the room for his panel on Driving the Snakes from Hasbrook Heights. The original plan was a plastic snake hunt in honor of Saint Patrick’s Day, but fears of killing someone who had a snake phobia scuttled that idea. When the moderator failed to show, Joshua was made the moderator and did a good job leading a discussion on snakes in genre (and beyond) literature. The audience participated a lot and apparently I was one of the few people who knew the story of Saint Patrick.

I was introduced to S.C. Butler, whose first novel is coming out from TOR later this year, and the four of us headed off to get some dinner. Sam was nice enough to drive. We chose the Bendix Diner since it was one of the closest places listed on our sheet of restaurants. What a choice. On entering, we were adopted to two little boys (6 and under). They followed us to our table, pulled up chairs, took a menu, and wanted to order chicken fingers. The waitress came and left without the kids, but fortunately she took them on her second trip to the table. Very odd. The food was not worth writing about.

On returning to the con, I was introduced to a game involving trains. (Can’t remember the name.) This would later become a tradition for those periods where we had nothing better to do. I never won any of the games but it was a lot of fun. After our first game ended, we decided to hit the dealer’s room since they’d be closing soon. There were only a few booksellers so it was easy to do my usual research on what wasn’t available and what was selling. Someday I’ll get to put this to use. :) The other dealers had some DVDs, a lot of clothes or jewelry, and surprisingly, herbs. I ended up spending some time talking to the people at the Garden State Horror Writer’s Association table after seeing a book I didn’t recognize… and another… and another. More stuff to order for the store! I’m sure I’ll be in touch with them soon.

At 9PM, I headed off to Fairy Tale Bedtime Stories for Children and Adults which was a reading (with hot chocolate and kids in PJs) by yuki_onna (Catherynne Valente) from her forthcoming book, The Orphan’s Tales. It was a wonderful reading. The kids ate it up and the adults enjoyed it too. Don’t let the audience and stuffed bears fool you, these aren’t Disney fairy tales. I’m looking forward to this even more than I was before and when I’m done reading it, I’ll use it for bedtime reading with Aidan.

The last panel of the evening (for me) was A Look at Epic Fantasy. I didn’t recognize most of the names on the panel. When the introductions were done it turned out that three were involved in publishing, one was an author (Joshua), and I believe the other was a fan. With this setup, the discussion drifted into epic fantasy from the publishing perspective and never really hit the expected points. Despite that, I still found it interesting.

Spent the rest of the evening down in the Cafe where the Livejournal/Blogger meet and greet was supposed to happen. If it happened, I missed it. Joshua, Jennifer, and I hung out for a while. The night wound down and I drove home to find my son sleeping in my bed.