August and everything after…

I’m back from Worldcon and into the fall semester, so I’m taking my opportunity now to report on the month of August that was–and give a few more details about my upcoming project Icarus to boot.  Without further ado:

1.  I feel like I’ve been saying this a lot about the conventions and conferences I’ve attended–maybe I just go to the good ones!  But Gen Con 2013 was an absolute blast.  The Writers’ Symposium, now past its twentieth year, has never been larger, with authors and editors like James Dashner, James L. Sutter, Jim Hines (apparently we’re all about the James), Mary Robinette Kowal and Lou Anders among many others joining its ranks.  Panel attendance was the best it has ever been, and the usual great audience participation made it that much better.  Besides the panels, reading and workshops, I got the chance to make some more valuable professional contacts, hang out with my family and a ton of author (and non-author) friends, play games, and even run True Dungeon with authors Paul Genesse, Brad Beaulieu and others.  So as usual, it was an incredible experience, and it remains my favorite convention among so many great ones…I’m already looking forward to next year.  (And by the way, I’ll post panels from both this convention and Worldcon on my Media page over the next month or so, as time permits.)

2.  I was barely back from Gen Con when I was getting ready for Worldcon, this year’s version being held as LoneStarCon in San Antonio, Texas.  I’d never been to San Antonio, and really enjoyed the experience of visiting the Alamo and being on the Riverwalk (which is beautiful), though I could have done without the 100 degree temperatures every day!  But the city was beautiful, and the convention center and hotel layout worked very well.  I enjoyed both panels I was on, one on teaching fantasy and science fiction and one on politics in speculative fiction, and the workshop I did with Martha Wells was enjoyable as always (with some great submissions to work with–keep the good stuff coming, everyone!).  I got the chance to do interviews with Martha and Chuck Wendig for Speculate,
too, which was cool…as was hanging out with Patrick Hester from SF Signal (shortly before they won another Hugo), Justin Landon from Staffer’s Book Review, Steven Drew from the Fantasy subreddit on Reddit, and authors, editors and agents too numerous to mention.  And the parties, especially the Booksworn party on Thursday and Drinks With Authors on Saturday, were great too.  I was also happy to see a number of votes for Speculate on the Hugo nominating ballot–hopefully we can get into that final nominated group next year, but we made some significant progress this time around.  On the whole it was a good and productive experience.

Without getting too into the weeds, I’ll say that some of what I’ve seen elsewhere on the web regarding the Worldcon attendee makeup does jive with my experience–the convention is overwhelmingly white, fairly male, and increasingly older.  My friend Maurice Broaddus and many others have commented about this more than I now need to, but I will say that although I agree every convention has its own feel and style–and should–if Worldcon is intended to be representative of the entire SFF community, the con organizers are going to have to work in the future to make that happen, and all of us will have to make sure it’s on track to do so.  There are some excellent ideas out there already about how to do this, and I hope the discussion the community is already engaged in will bear fruit over the next few months.

Finally, preparations for my Kickstarter of Icarus, my second novel being turned into a graphic novel with the artistry of Matt Slay (of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles fame) and run by Silence in the Library, the operation behind the summer’s successful Time Traveled Tales anthology Kickstarter, are moving ahead nicely.  Matt’s already started some early storyboarding for the project, and I’ve confirmed some other aspects of the Kickstarter, including a video game stretch goal which I’m very excited about and for which I’ll be able to provide more details in the weeks ahead.  The Kickstarter will go live on November 5th; please check back here for more details as the date gets closer, and please spread the word! 

So in general, August was a great month, and with the fall semester upon us, writing projects in various stages of submission or revision, and family time (as my daughter *gulp* begins kindergarten!), this is going to be an exciting and busy few months to come.  But it’s all great stuff, and I’m excited as always for the future.  Until next we speak, thanks as always for stopping by, and be well!