Had an enjoyable reading for the virtual OR-eCon last weekend, and we did dawdle just a little bit into lunchtime.
Sharing here the autograph pages of the WFC 2020 program, featuring our various digital signings. I’m there on the far upper right – on the edge, naturally – near Mary Anne Mohanraj and S.M. Stirling. Heading leftwards along my latitude, I can find Sarah Pinsker, Kate Elliott, Sheree Renee Thomas, Julie Czerneda, guest of honor David Cherry, and my Nebula grandmaster mentor, Joe Haldeman. Great reads by all of these authors, glad to be recorded in their company!
Mild tragedy has struck, and the limitations of volunteer power mean that OR-eCon 2020 has at least three fewer Zoom rooms than projected. So, the ultimate dream panel scheduling from two postings ago is all, yes entirely gone, EXCEPT: my book reading, which is definitely a good one to save. That’s a short list of spotlighted authors, and I’m glad to be on it.
Science fiction fantasy book conventions are almost entirely volunteer-run, in case you weren’t aware! These are amazing idea exchanges, hotspots of creator support and genre fueling. I arrived at these events later in life, but I heartily endorse the good company that may be found here, amidst lots of humanity and imagination. When I realized what kinds of discussions can take place, I dove in headfirst and fulltime volunteered for my first SFF convention, Sasquan/WorldCon 2015, and have now held five-to-several separate volunteer department positions subsequently – if I wasn’t or even if I was presenting, because they’re such wonderful forums. Volunteering is absolutely a great first-timer entry point, and anyone interested in a whole new world need not be intimidated.
Hot on the heels of WFC, here’s a favorite local convention. It was the first to feature me as an author, after WorldCon, though Seattle’s NorwesCon followed as soon as the calendar would allow. Portland has been my sometime home, and among my foremost friendship cities.
Due to the pandemic, this will be available to everyone everywhere this year! I’m looking forward to sharing a virtual table with some panelists who I’ve attended for a while. Also, I’m finally on the Space Opera panel, and the Genre Hybrid panel, plus a Worldbuilding panel, with a reading – this is the dream panel schedule I’d been wanting since the very beginning, and better. My OryCon / OR-eCon schedule is as follows (I find this pasted block formatting to be novel, so I’m leaving it this way):
Building Your World in Science Fiction
Zoom 2 – Writing
Fri Nov 13 1:00pm – 1:50pm
Where we will discuss how to research, plot, and develop the setting in science fiction literature.
Eva L. Elasigue, Lee French, David D. Levine
Losing Track of Reality
Zoom 3 – Science
Fri Nov 13 2:00pm – 2:50pm
Whether from belief in magic exploited by hucksters, false news stories created and exploited by politicians, disinformation promulgated for profit, flat Earth and young Earth dogmas, and entertainment fantasy taken too seriously, reality in history and science seem under attack. Is this actually getting worse? Could the inability of a faux-news fed public to deal realistically with the scientific issues of diseases, overpopulation, and climate change pose an existential threat to humanity? What, as writers and readers, should we do about it?
April Aasheim, Eva L. Elasigue, Joyce Reynolds-Ward
Zoom 2 – Writing
Sat Nov 14 12:00pm – 12:50pm
Stories that incorporate core concepts and elements of more than one traditional genre offer something particularly satisfying for those drawn to them. A discussion on these with writers who create them.
April Aasheim, K.G. (Karen) Anderson, Eva L. Elasigue, David D. Levine
Zoom 6 – General
Sat Nov 14 1:00pm – 1:50pm
What is space opera, and what draws people to the macroscopic, multivaried saga? Scope, scale, narrative, and humanity in expansive storytelling.
Eva L. Elasigue, Rhiannon Held, David D. Levine
The Reality of Gender in Space-Themed Science Fiction
Zoom 3 – Science
Sat Nov 14 2:00pm – 2:50pm
When encountering new species on distant worlds, science fiction writers can think up the most brilliant of cultures and colors and tech, but too often resort to ‘male’ and ‘female’ genders. Chat with a PhD in mycology (the study of fungi) on how uncommon binary genders are even on earth, and how to broaden your worldview, both as readers and writers, into the potential richness of different evolutionary tracks.rnrn(TLDR: how to make better aliens using science)
Eva L. Elasigue, Joyce Reynolds-Ward
All of this has happened before, and all of this will happen again
Zoom 6 – General
Sat Nov 14 5:00pm – 5:50pm
In the aftermath of 9/11, Battlestar Galactica was reimagined as a means of helping us understand how we had arrived at and how we might cope with a radically changed world. This discussion focuses on the road narrative in BSG and other SF and how ancient archetypes, hero’s journeys, and more can help us learn from the past and create a different future.
It’s pretty and light, seemingly – the new PDF version of Fire Within! $5 to @Eva-Elasigue-Primal-Spiral on Venmo, or to firstname.lastname@example.org over PayPal to get the ball rolling. I am happy to report that this PDF is also accessible to people who have a World Fantasy Convention virtual pass.