I'll be an author guest at SFContario 3 this coming weekend, Nov 9-11, in downtown Toronto. This is a fairly new convention, now in its third year. If you're in the area or are already going, here is my schedule of panels, readings, and activities for the convention:
Saturday, Nov 10:
11am - noon: Panel - But I don't know any vampires (Ballroom A)
1:00 - 2:00pm: Reading (Gardenview Room)
3:00 - 4:00pm: Signing (Ballroom hallway)
5:00 - 6:00pm: Panel - SFContario Idol (Courtyard)
6:00 - 7:00pm: Panel - What happened to our utopias? (Courtyard)
Sunday, Nov 11:
Noon - 1pm: Kaffeeklatsch (Room 207)
Here's some more detail on the above panels:
But I don't know any vampires: Our English teachers taught us to "write what you know" But very few of us have been on a long space journey, met a vampire detective, or fought a fire-breathing dragon. Our panelists discuss how a little research and common sense can give you just enough background to really write about what you don't know. (Helen Marshall, Michael McPherson, David Nickle, Douglas Smith (Moderator), Caitlin Sweet)
SFContario Idol: Attendees bring in the first page of their manuscript. A presenter from SFContario will read out the manuscript (anonymously) until a majority of our panel of judges ‘buzz’ the story to a stop. Discussion ensues on why they stopped it, what didn’t work and what did work. A great exercise in story openings that will provide immediate valuable feedback to the writers. (Suzanne Church, Sandra Kasturi, Duff McCourt, Brett Savory, Douglas Smith)
What happened to our Utopias? Finding examples of current SF dystopias is easy. But where are all of the utopias in our SF imagination? It seems that since the 1970s, it is more and more difficult for audiences to find examples of the perfect, harmonized future. Is anybody writing about utopia anymore? Does the lack of utopian fiction and film mean that we, as a society, have lost hope? (Chandler Davis, Violette Malan, James Nicoll, Douglas Smith)
Reading: I'll be reading from my new story, "The Walker of the Shifting Borderland," which is out now in the new issue of On Spec.
Kaffeeklatsch: Drop by and have a chat with me in a small group about my writing, writing in general, Buffy, movies, or whatever.
Hope to see you there!