sf conventions


I’ll be spending the weekend in Gaithersburg, MD at Capclave, and here is where you can find me (if you happen to be looking). I’ve gone to this convention for the last several years, but this is the first time I’m participating on programming officially.

I’ll also be happily waving around copies of In a Cat’s Eye edited by Vonnie Winslow Crist and Kelly A. Harmon, which contains my latest “A Familiar Story.”

FRIDAY, 7 October
5pm Suite 1209
UFO 5 & Humanity 2.0 Launch party
I’m the copyeditor on the UFO series, and I’m planning on hanging around the launch party. I hear they’ll be authentic bagels . . . .

7pm – Bethesda
Son of Steampunk
[Panelists: Doc Coleman, Elektra Hammond (mod), Elaine Stiles]
Steampunk genre caught on in ways nobody expected, spawning offspring genres (Dieselpunk, Atompunk, Clockpunk, etc.) achieve the same popularity? The panel will discuss these new subgenres, what defines them, and their staying power.

SATURDAY, 8 October
10am – Rockville/Potomac
The Martian and the Robinsonade
[Panelists: Michael Capobianco, Elektra Hammond, James Morrow, Michael D. Pederson (mod)]
What’s so intriguing and enduring about being stranded and alone? The panelists will discuss if there is room left in the reading market for variations on this theme.

11am – Frederick
The Portal Story
[Panelists: Martin Berman-Gorvine (mod), Elektra Hammond, Victoria Janssen, Sarah Pinsker]
The portal story, where the protagonist travels to another place, world, or universe, has a long history and is a mainstay in genre literature. Panelists will discuss the best and the worst tales, as well as portal stories that defy the trope yet still stays true to the sub-genre.

7:30 – Salon A
Mass Autographing session

8:30 – Salon A
WSFA Small Press Award Ceremony
Two of the stories in Cats in Space (the anthology I edited for Paper Golem) are nominated for the Award, as well as a number of the year’s other fine stories. I’ll be there cheering for the winner!

SUNDAY, 9 October
noon – Rockville/Potomac
Cats in Fantasy & Science Fiction
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond (mod), Kelly A. Harmon, Alex Shvartsman, Michelle D. Sonnier]
From CJ Cherryh’s Chanur series to Alex Shvartsman’s cat aliens who *almost* take over our planet, cats and cat-based alien species are here to stay. Why are they so popular?

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I’ll be on Mars, well, in Mars, Pennsylvania, starting on Friday (25 July) through Sunday (27 July) for Confluence, at the Sheraton Starpoint.

Here’s my preliminary schedule (*updated to included panel descriptions and add 2 panels):

FRIDAY, 25 July
6pm – Marshall
Is SFWA Still Relevant?
[Panelists: Denise Verrico (m), Sarah Goslee, Elektra Hammond, Christie Meiers]
The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America – SFWA is a professional organization for authors of science fiction, fantasy and related genres. With a stated intent of supporting its members in a multitude of ways, does it manage to keep itself open to the needs of today’s writers, or has it become an exclusive club of snobs?

7pm – Pine
Why I’m a Fan
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond (m), Ken Chiacchia, Alan Katerinsky, Larry Ivkovitch]
We love the genres, whether it’s Science Fiction in all its electronic, beeping, gear-meshing wonder, Fantasy and each magical quest or Horror with every shadow lurking behind an innocent façade. How did we get here and what about it all keeps us?

8pm – Board Room
Reading
[Panelists: me!]
I’ll be reading from “In the Form of a Question,” in which Norse Gods play Jeopardy!. It appears in the parody anthology TV Gods–copies will be for sale in the Huckster’s Room from the Fortress Guys.

SATURDAY, 26 July
5pm – Marshall
Why did Steampunk?
[Panelists: Matt Betts (m), Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Elektra Hammond, Jeff Young]
Lately, it is being recognized as a separate and distinct genre of fiction. Why did it happen, what about it captured the imaginations of so many, what about it continues to gather forward momentum (build up a head of steam?)?

8pm – Pine
SF Series – What’s worth it and what doesn’t make the grade
[Panelists: David Hartwell (m), Eric Leif Davin, Elektra Hammond, Charles Oberndorf]
Not specifically SF — all series are fair game here. Writers have done multiple visits to the same worlds/universes. From John Carter and Tarzan to Game of Thrones, which ones are worth the time and which are a questionable use of paper or digital memory?

9pm – Marshall
Movies as Series – good and bad
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond (m), Michael Arnzen, Ken Chiacchia, Jon Sprunk]
Just as there are novels that are series, there are movies that were series. A discussion of good series, bad series and OMG-I-can’t-believe-there-was-a follow-up-to-that-dog.

9pm – 525
There is a book launch (yes, I know it conflicts with my panel!) for Fortress Publishing’s latest endeavor TV Gods. I’ll be dashing there after the panel is over.

SUNDAY, 27 July
12 noon – Marshall
How do you find the Right books to read? (Needle in a haystack?)
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond (m), Tim Liebe, Jeff Young, Alan Katerinsky]
With all the choices available now, where can you find the right mix of Hard SF and character, how about suspense and break-neck plotting, whimsical fantasy and learning from mistakes? You can’t always trust the back blurbs and sometimes the covers have nothing to do with what’s on the inside. Is there a resource or group you can trust?

1pm – Crawford/Venango
Tom Smith Live!
If you’re looking for me–I’ll be here, listening to the World’s Fastest Filker.

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Detcon1, the North American Science Fiction Convention (NASFiC) will be from Thursday (17 July) to Sunday (20 July) in Detroit, Michigan at the Renaissance Center Marriot. I’ve got several panels on Friday, and I’ll be spending the rest of the weekend promoting the DC in 17 Worldcon Bid. Look for me at our fan table and parties.

Here’s where you’ll find me:

FRIDAY, 18 July
10am – Mackinac West
Going from Book to Movie: Adaption
[Panelists: Lisa Padol (m), Al Bouchard, Elektra Hammond, Steven Barnes]
Why does Hollywood have trouble translating books, comics, etc. into
movies & TV shows? Is it inherent in the original texts or in the
process/constraints of adaptation? Which have succeeded and which have
failed? What would we like to see adapted?

1pm – Ambassador Salon 3
Writing Humor and Comedy in SFF
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond (m), Jim C. Hines, Oz Wilson Jr., Cath Schaff-Stump, Sam Morgan]
Our panel discusses the challenges of writing humor and comedy in SFF. Is it as easy as it looks? Or as hard as some people say it is?

6pm – Joliet A
Broad Universe Rapid Fire Reading
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond (m), Roberta Rogow, Ellen Denham]
Readings by members of Broad Universe. I’ll be reading from “In the Form of a Question,” in which Norse Gods play Jeopardy!. It appears in the parody anthology TV Gods–and I’ll have copies for sale.

P.S. It’s a popular weekend to be going to Detroit–Joe Biden and I are arriving at just about the same time . . . .

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Balticon 48 will be from Friday (23 May) to Monday (26 May) in Hunt Valley, Maryland at the Baltimore Hunt Valley Inn. Look for me at parties and book launches and stuffs! When I’m not scheduled, I’ll be at DC in 17 stuff.

Here’s where you’ll find me:

FRIDAY, 23 May
8pm – Belmont
Copy Editing Do’s and Don’ts
[Panelists: Holliann Russell Kim, Elektra Hammond, Sue Baiman, Cindy Young-Turner, John French]
Finding an effective copy-editor, what makes someone good or bad as a copy editor, and why you may not want to have someone close to you edit your work

SATURDAY, 24 May
1pm – Salon B
5 Books for the Last Town on Earth
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond, Brenda Clough, Larry Hodges, Cindy Young-
Turner, Amy Kaplan]
By some freaky quirk of fate, your little city survived a major cataclysm. As far as you know, you are all that’s left, but you DO want to survive. What five books will help you and your neighbors survive?

4pm – Pimlico
Broad Universe Rapid Fire Reading
[Panelists: Gail Z Martin, Reesa Herberth, Jean Marie Ward, Elektra
Hammond, Michelle Moore]
Rapid Fire readings from some amazing women/authors.

6pm to 8pm – Frankie & Vinnie’s (Consuite)
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond, Mike D’Ambrosio, Jeff Young, Christopher Pisano, Brian Koscienski, Jon Sprunk, Eric Hardenbrook]
TV Gods book launch
Fortress Publishing, Inc. Presents TV Gods:
“Picture your favorite TV show! Imagine your favorite Pantheon! Mash them
together — What could possibly go wrong?” The great pantheons of the world run amok through eighteen tales of wonder and hilarity. Discover how the Egyptian gods use night court for judging the souls of the dead. What will happen when an office of Greek gods get downsized? Why are there Norse gods on a space ship?
Come join Fortress Publishing, Inc. in celebrating the launch of this exciting new anthology.

SUNDAY, 25 May
4pm – Salon B
They Play in Other Sandboxes
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond, Sarah Pinsker, Carl Cipra, Robert Glaub,
Jo Walton]
Panelists discuss successful and well-known SF writers who write in other genres and recommend some examples we might want to read.

MONDAY, 26 May
noon – Chase
How Hard Can it Be? Jumping out of Genre
[Panelists: KT Bryski (M), Elektra Hammond, Betsy Riley, Starla Huchton, Michael Hanson]
What do you do when you get a great opportunity…in a field in which you have NO experience? What are the advantages and pitfalls to writing in many genres? What are some strategies for leaving your comfort zone?

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While I was visiting with C.J. at Zenkaikon, a talented young man named John Salvino came by and did a quick pencil sketch, showing off C.J.’s iconic black hat. You can find more of John’s art on his blog–go check it out.


cj henderson by john solvino

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Darkovercon 36 (the very last Darkovercon ever) is this weekend.

Here’s where you’ll find me:

FRIDAY, 29 November
6pm – Greenspring Ballroom 3 -5
The Romance Invasion
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond(mod), Margaret L. Carter, Stephanie Dray, Katherine Kurtz, Rosemary Edghill]
How has the “Romance” genre affected the F&SF genres? What Romance themes or motifs have become a part of F&SF art and literature? Has this inclusion changed, spoiled, or widened the possibilities for the F&SF genres? If so, how?

7pm – Board Room
Kaffeeklatch – Rosemary Edghill
I’ll be a non-participatory attendee, with a large selection of Rosemary’s rare and out-of-print books available for a small donation to the convention. Rosemary has generously donated these books from her personal stock.

9pm – Atrium
Don Sakers & Thomas Atkinson get married in Maryland

SATURDAY, 30 November
11am – Greenspring Ballroom 3 -5
Looking for [X] in All the Wrong Places
[Panelists: Carl Cipra(mod), Danielle Ackley-McPhail, D.H. Aire, Elektra Hammond, Melissa Scott, Leona Wisoker]
Writers and artists discuss the concept of “research” for their creations. Discussion will include: why research is important; typical and/or unusual sources they’ve used; sources they recommend for different types of creations; sources to avoid; etc.

1pm – Greenspring Ballroom 3 -5
Author Guest of Honor Speech
[Panelist: Rosemary Edghill]
I’ll likely be in the back of the room, listening to my mentor, the amazingly awesome Rosemary Edghill, with a large selection of her rare and out-of-print books available for a small donation to the convention. Rosemary has generously donated these books from her personal stock.

3pm – Chesapeake 3 -5
Stick a Gear on it and call it Steampunk
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond(mod), Rosemary Edghill, Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Michelle Sonnier, Jonah Knight]
A discussion by writers of cross-genre mixes of Steampunk with, well, everything. Romance, Lovecraftian horror, science fiction, mystery, westerns.

4pm – Greenspring Ballroom 3 -5
Mass Autographing Session
I’ll be with our Author Guest of Honor, Rosemary Edghill, with a large selection of her rare and out-of-print books available for a small donation to the convention. Rosemary has generously donated these books from her personal stock.

5pm – Chesapeake 3 -5
Broad Universe Rapid Fire Reading
[Panelists: Sarah Pinsker(mod), Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Margaret Carter, Meriah Crawford, Elektra Hammond, Kelly A. Harmon, Erika Satifka, Vonnie Winslow Crist, Leona Wisoker]
Short readings from a selection of authors, all members of Broad Universe. I’ll be reading from my story “In the Form of a Question,” to be published by Fortress Publishing Inc. in parody anthology TV Gods in May 2014.

SUNDAY, 1 December
noon – Timonium Room
Reading – Rosemary Edghill
I’ll be a non-participatory attendee, listening to Rosemary read, with a large selection of her rare and out-of-print books available for a small donation to the convention. Rosemary has generously donated these books from her personal stock.

1pm – Chesapeake 3 -5
Young Adult Fantasy & Science Fiction: New Stuff, Good Stuff
[Panelists: Don Sakers(mod), Vonnie Winslow Crist, Elektra Hammond, Mike McPhail]
Panelists discuss what’s new in the world of YA (Young Adult) F&SF and make recommendations of their favorites (past and present).

2pm – Greenspring Ballroom 3 -5
Q&A for Authors
[Panelists: Jennifer Heise(mod), Rosemary Edghill, Don Sakers, Warren Rochelle, Margaret L. Carter, Melissa Scott, Leona Wisoker, D.H. Aire, Scott MacMillan, Stephanie Dray, Alanna Morland, Erica Satifka, Katherine Kurtz, C.S. Friedman, Meriah L. Crawford, Heather Rose Jones, Sarah Pinsker]
Is there something you’ve really wanted to ask one of the attending authors but haven’t had a chance to ask yet? Well, here’s your chance to ask!
Again–I’ll likely be in the back of the room, listening to the panel, offering a last chance for anyone to pick up rare and out-of-print books by Rosemary Edghill (for a small donation to the convention). Rosemary has generously donated these books from her personal stock.

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Philcon is this weekend! I’ll be busy, busy, busy, right here in Cherry Hill. Look for me sitting in the main convention lobby at the Masquerade Table (I’m Masquerade Director this year) if you need me or in Operations (I’ll be helping with the cashy money). Come by and volunteer to help with either the Masquerade or my sanity.

Here’s my panel schedule:

FRIDAY, 8 November
6pm – Plaza III (Three)
Cosplay in the Anime World versus International Costumers Guild (ICG) Competition
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond(mod), Aurora Celeste, Byron Connell, Raven Stormbringer, Laura Kovalcin]
Masquerades at science fiction conventions began in the 1950s–how do they differ from the cosplay competitions at anime conventions? A lively discussion to dispel myths, clear up confusion and help integrate two compatible groups.

SATURDAY, 9 November

11am – 1pm (2 hours!) – Grand Ballroom A
Masquerade Rehearsal

1pm – Plaza III (Three)
Editing Anthologies: Beyond the Gimmick
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond (mod), Brian Koscienski, Alex Shvartsman, Keith R.A. DeCandido]
Anthologies are often sold on the basis of a gimmick or concept that connects the stories, such as “Killer Rutabagas from Space”. How do you get beyond the gimmick to a work of substance. Note: This follows right on the main Masquerade rehearsal. Alex Shvartsman will start moderating the panel if I’m late . . .

SUNDAY, 10 November
11am – Plaza V (Five)
The Summer of Science Fiction
[Panelists: Jay Smith (mod), Tony Finan, Orenthal Hawkins, Mark Leeper, Elektra Hammond]
2013 had an impressive line-up of genre films, from Star Trek Into Darkness and Elysium to Man of Steel and The Wolverine. Did this summer’s blockbusters fulfill our geeky needs? Discuss with the
panelists the pros and cons of this summer’s movies and which ones you would buy on DVD
Note: This panel is opposite the Broad Universe Rapid-Fire-Reading, which I also really wanted to do . . . but I am a movie critic.

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lonestarcon iron throne

Lonestarcon was my busiest Worldcon to date, but a ton of fun. I had a full schedule of panels, including costuming (thanks Aurora!), steampunk, and best of all, movies! I finally put going to (and reviewing) all those movies to use.

I helped out with the Phoenix in 2014 NasFic bid (working the bid table and the awesome party)–sadly, we lost to Detroit when all the votes were counted–good luck Detcon I!

I worked as a stage ninja for the Masquerade Saturday night and I went to the Hugo Award ceremony Sunday night (and rode up in the elevator afterward with Rory McCann aka The Hound–he is tall!). Both events were well-attended and nicely coordinated by the Lonestarcon staff. The costumes were amazing (at both events!), the memorial presentation at the Masquerade was heart-wrenching, and Leslie Fish knocked it out of the park with the halftime show. After seeing all the dramatic presentations, and reading most of the fiction, the Hugos were intense and amazing to watch.

I did my first stint as a member of Broad Universe, and participated in the rapid-fire reading, premiering an excerpt from my forthcoming story “In the Form of a Question”–Norse gods play Jeopardy!, scheduled for May 2014 in the anthology TV Gods. The Broads are awesome, and supportive, and I’m terribly glad I joined.

I’m also a new affiliate of SFWA, and it was great to visit the SFWA suite and start meeting folks. Everyone I spoke to was great! There was a Paper Golem Press meeting with Lawrence Schoen about our upcoming anthology Cats in Space–(look for it in the next couple of months).

Then there were the people. Dinner with friends from Philly and Delaware and New York and my awesome roommate Debi. Costume panels with both Pettingers, Byron Connell, Julie Barrett, C.J. Mills, and the multi-talented Janine Wardale. Movie panels with Adam-Troy Castro, Perrianne Lurie, Heather Urbanski, Terry Floyd, and Mark Oshiro (I met Mark Oshiro!).

Me and Mark Oshiro

Went to a bunch and a half of parties. And I saw old friends and new. Talked to Alex Shvartsman and Myke Cole and Judi Castro. Nibbled on breakfast and chatted with Steve Jackson (what a nice guy!). Met all the Phoenix in 2014 crew in person, finally. Met Steven Gould and Matthew Johnson and Patrick Nielsen Hayden.

Did I mention my amazing roommate Debi?

Now I want to go to the next six Worldcons . . . .

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Worldcon is coming up soon! in San Antonio, Texas, and here is how to find me.

I’ve got some panels to do, I’ll be helping staff both the Phoenix in 2014 NasFic Bid (probably by working at site selection, but maybe at the bid table) & parties Thursday and Friday night, and the Broad Universe table, and I’ll be doing something to help with the Masquerade (whatever Sharon tells me to do–she gets first call on my time!).

Here’s my schedule: (all panels are 50 minutes)

FRIDAY, 30 August
11am
[Business Lunch]

1pm – Convention Center 101A
Hats and Hat Making
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond, Janine Wardale]
Where do you find hats for costuming, and how do you get started in making your own?

5pm – Convention Center 003A
Embellishment Techniques
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond, Sandy Pettinger, Janine Wardale]
Learn the basics of embellishment techniques like applique, beading, quilting, and more!

SATURDAY, 31 August
11am – Convention Center 006A
Steampunk: The Present and the Future
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond(M), Phil Foglio, Kaja Foglio, Takayuki Tatsumi]
Over the last decade the Steampunk genre has exploded. There is a growing presence of Steampunk in literature, the cinema and television. We will discuss both the classics and new offerings, including how to find them, and how ‘steamy’ they are.

12noon – Convention Center 003A
Adapting Historical Fashion
[Panelists: Julie Barrett, Janine Wardale, Elektra Hammond]
How do you learn about historical fashion trends, and how do you adapt those trends to original designs and historically-inspired fashions like medieval fantasy and steampunk?

2pm – Convention Center 007B
30 Great SF & Fantasy Films You Almost Certainly Haven’t Seen
[Panelists: Perrianne Lurie (M), Val Ontell, Elektra Hammond, Terry Floyd, Adam-Troy Castro]
The many new options for home viewing have greatly increased the availability of any number of obscure, independent, and foreign films available to anybody willing to risk a journey off the beaten path. Panelists will take two minutes apiece to sell you some little-known masterpieces you should check out at you first opportunity. Be prepared to take notes.

8pm – Rivercenter Grand Ballroom
Masquerade

SUNDAY, 1 September
10am – Convention Center 007B
Broad Universe Rapid Fire Reading
[Panelists: Valerie Frankel(M), Laurel Anne Hill, Roberta Rogow, Tracey Godsey, Katherine Villyard, Alexis Latner, Rachael Acks, Folly Blaine, Barbara Ann Wright, J.K. Cheney, Elektra Hammond]
Very short readings from members of Broad Universe.

1pm – Convention Center 101A
Building a Costume Library
[Panelists: Elektra Hammond(M), C.J. Mills, Byron P. Connell, Pierre Pettinger Jr]
How do you find costuming books? How to tell the good from the bad books. When to buy instead of borrow.

MONDAY, 2 September
10am – Convention Center 008A
Summer Blockbusters – 2013
[Panelists: Mark Oshiro(M), Melinda M. Snodgrass, Elektra Hammond, Heather Urbanski]
This year’s summer blockbusters are now (almost) history. Iron Man 3, Star Trek…it’s all over but the long form Hugo nominations. Let’s discuss this year’s crop. Why are they always franchises?

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LunaconSATURDAY, 16 March
10am
Poplar
Humor in SF
[Panelists: Dan Kimmel (M), Elektra Hammond, Theodore Krulik, Alex Shvartsman, Patrick Thomas]
What are the most effective humorous SF books? Are any both funny and groundbreaking, or does humor rely on sending up established tropes? What both funny and sad? Funny and plausible? How much of SF humor depends on surprise, and how much stands up to rereading? Do SF and fantasy humor work the same way, or are there fundamental differences?
Note: I’m looking forward to being on a panel with both Alex and Pat, both of whom I’ve worked with on anthologies and whose writing I love

SATURDAY, 16 March
1pm
Halsted I
Tiny Hats Workshop
[Panelists: Laurel Cunningham Hill (M), Elektra Hammond, Carol Salemi]
With trim and other materials, decorate one of those adorable tiny hats that everyone is wearing. $5 for supplies.

SATURDAY, 16 March
3pm
Westchester Ballroom A2
Game of Thrones: TV vs. Books
[Panelists: Perrianne Lurie (M), Elektra Hammond, Hugh Casey, Douglas Cohen, Toni Lay]
We’ve had two seasons of HBO’s GAME OF THRONES, roughly covering books 1-2 of GRRM’s “A Song of Ice and Fire.” How good is the adaptation, and how does it differ from the books? Does it matter to your impression that Martin is involved in the adaption?
Notes: I have a panel with Hugh–most fun ever!

SUNDAY, 17 March
10am
Westchester Ballroom A2
Steampunk – More than Cool Goggles & Victorian
[Panelists: Susan Toker (M), Elektra Hammond, Hugh Casey, Laurel Cunningham Hill]
These days almost anything goes. Find out the essential parts needed to make an outfit steampunk.
Notes: I have a another panel with Hugh–even more fun!

This looks like a lot of fun–hope I see you there!

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