This weekend: Balticon

Balticon symbolI know I promised to start talking about the background behind some of my stories, but it’s going to be a busy weekend, so I thought I’d first let people know that I’m going to be at Balticon.

This is going to be my first Balticon, and I’m really looking forward to it. Not only because it sounds like a lot of fun, but because it’s happening about the time I’m also looking forward to two publications: my upcoming mosaic novel The History of Soul 2065, and my story “Blaming Caine,” which just came out in Chuck Gannon’s anthology Lost Signals of the Terran Republic.

I’m going to be participating in several panels, doing a reading, and hanging out with friends. If you’d like to sit in on some of them (or just come by to say hi), here’s my schedule:

Saturday, May 25

How to be a Good Moderator
Room 8006, 11am – 11:55am
Barbara Krasnoff (moderator), D.H. Aire, Jennifer R. Povey, Jazmine Cosplays, Grig Larson
Moderating a discussion panel at a convention is both easier and harder than it looks. Experienced moderators share their tips for keeping order, steering the discussion, and fixing it when things go wrong.

Gender in Genre
Room 8006, 6pm – 6:55pm
Barbara Krasnoff (moderator), K.M. Szpara, Jo Miles, Jazmine Cosplays, Rosemary Claire Smith
The presentation of gender roles in genre fiction has evolved drastically over the last century. While we may think of scifi as behind ahead of the curve with regards to social development, that’s not always the case. How have societal expectations of gender been reflected in genre works and who’s exploring new ground today?

Weird Tales and the Problematic
Mount Washington, 9pm – 9:55pm
John Robison (moderator), Lisa Padol, Scott Roche, Ruthanna Emrys, L. Marie Wood, Barbara Krasnoff
Lovecraft, Howard, Lord Dunsany, Poe, and other authors of the late 19th and early 20th centuries have had a formative effect on the genres of sci-fi and fantasy. Their depictions of sex, gender, race, and class that disturb many in the 21st Century, but not in the way the authors intended. Recently there have been calls to end using their materials, particularly Lovecraft. Should we abandon these stories and forms, or should we try and reappropriate the themes into our more diverse world?

Sunday, May 26

Class Structure in SF and Fantasy
Kent, 12pm – 12:55pm
Barbara Krasnoff (moderator), Lauren Harris, Sarah Avery, Ted Weber, Don Sakers
An invented society offers unique possibilities to examine our own. How would access to magic or powerful technology, or even a different path through history, alter larger communities? What fictional class systems have been too fantastical, and which have been depressingly close to reality?

Social Anxiety and the Modern Fan
Room 6017, 2pm – 2:55pm
Barbara Krasnoff (moderator), Dame Dahlia, Sara Testarossa, Fred G. Yost
How do fans who are introverts or have social anxiety deal with conventions and other fan gatherings?

Readings: Avery, Doyle, Krasnoff
St. George, 6pm – 6:55pm
Tom Doyle, Sarah Avery, Barbara Krasnoff
Authors Sarah Avery, Tom Doyle, and Barbara Krasnoff read from their works.

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Capclave is next weekend!

Capclave dodoI haven’t attended too many conventions this year, but I (and Jim, of course) will be at Capclave, a small but very nice SF literary con with a slight tilt toward short fiction that will take place at the Hilton Washington DC/Rockville  starting this coming Friday, September 28th. We’ve enjoyed Capclave for several years, sometimes doing the tourist thing beforehand (this is in the D.C. area, after all!), sometimes just hanging out at the con and seeing friends. This year, the guests of honor are Nancy Kress and Alyssa Wong, two very worthy honoree

If you’re planning to be at the con (or in the area), and would like to know where I’ll be, here’s my schedule thus far:

Friday
6:30 pm in Lincoln room:
Reading
Haven’t decided what I’m going to read yet… Either a recently written story or one from The History of Soul 2065.

8:00 pm in Jackson room
Age issues in SF lit & fandom: Reality or perception? 
Panelist:Stafford Battle, Jim Freund, Inge Heyer, Barbara Krasnoff (M)
Is fandom really greying? There seems to be plenty of opportunity for new authors, but is it primarily in small press or online venues, as opposed to traditional publishing? What about how older characters are written?

9:00 pm in Eisenhower Room
Dealing With Rejection 
Panelists:Neil Clarke, Scott Edelman, Barbara Krasnoff (M), Michael A. Ventrella
Everyone in the field has to deal with rejection at some point. Panelists will talk about how they handle rejection, and in the case of editors, panelists will offer suggestions on how NOT to handle rejection

Saturday
12:00 pm in Monroe room
Overcoming Assumptions
Panelist:Barbara Krasnoff, LH Moore, Kathryn Morrow (M)
Expectations are created based on gender, race, sexuality, disability, etc. How do we move past those assumptions?

Hope to see you there!

I’ve got my Readercon schedule!

A few weeks ago, for few short days, I thought I might have to miss Readercon this year. I’m pleased to report that, as it turned out, Jim and I will be driving up Friday morning in time to catch the Friday evening panels, and will be staying through the rest of the con. (All my friends who will be having panels and/or readings Thursday or Friday — sorry!)

Besides attending as many panels and readings as I can possibly fit in, I will be moderating two really great-sounding panels, taking part in two group readings, and doing a half-hour reading on Sunday morning.

Here’s my schedule. See you there!

FRIDAY

7 p.m.
Salon C
The Works of E. Nesbit
Greer Gilman,  Barbara Krasnoff (M), John Langan, Henry Wessells, The joey Zone
E. Nesbit (1858–1924) was a giant of children’s literature. She was the first modern writer of literature for children, writing or collaborating on over 60 books, and was the most influential author on the genre in the 20th century. The Story of the Treasure Seekers, Five Children and It, The Enchanted Castle, The House of Arden, and her many other fantastical works for children are still read and loved today. Nesbit also wrote romance novels, a fantasy (Dormant), and an underrated and overlooked set of horror stories. She was a writer of great range and inventiveness, and a witty and intelligent stylist. Please join us in celebrating her life and work.

9 p.m.
Blue Hills
Radical Elders
Elizabeth Hand, James Patrick Kelly, Rosemary Kirstein, Barbara Krasnoff (M), Sabrina Vourvoulias
On the page, as in GOH Nisi Shawl’s Everfair, and in real life, as in the careers of authors such as Ursula K. Le Guin, elders are speaking their minds and upsetting the status quo. How can age intersect with radicalism and pioneering thought? How is the cognitive estrangement of aging relevant to speculative fiction and fannish communities, and what’s the best way of acknowledging that relevance?

SATURDAY

11:00 a.m.
Salon A
Group Reading: Tabula Rasa
Randee Dawn, Sally Wiener Grotta, Barbara Krasnoff, Terence Taylor
Tabula Rasa is a Brooklyn-based writers group

2 p.m.
Salon A
Group Reading: Kaleidocast
Mike Allen, Marcy Arlin, Rob Cameron, S.A. Chakraborty, Phenderson Djèlí Clark, Danielle Friedman, Carlos Hernandez, Barbara Krasnoff, Brad Parks, Jessica Plumbley, Ted Rabinowitz, David Mercurio Rivera, Eric Rosenfield, Sam Schreiber, Michael Wells, Zak Zyz
Authors featured on season two of the Kaleidocast podcast read from
their latest work

SUNDAY

10 a.m.
Salon B
Reading: Barbara Krasnoff
(I hope to read one of the unpublished short stories that will appear next year in my mosaic novel/collection The History of Soul 2065.)

Heliosphere this weekend

HeliosphereA last minute blog post (because I’ve been so awful at keeping this site up to date): The Heliosphere SF convention in Tarrytown, NY, takes place this weekend, March 9-11, and Jim & I will be there.

Heliosphere is a small, developing con, so it’s more laid-back and less formal than larger, more established cons — which is not a bad thing. We’ll be arriving Saturday morning and will stay through to Sunday, and both of us have a variety of panels.

Here’s my schedule (it’s all on Saturday) — come on by and say hello.

Dealing with Rejection as a New (or Even Old) Writer
Are you a new writer? Depressed at getting rejections? Well, so are we all. Experienced writers talk about how to deal with those nobody-loves-my-work blues.
Panelists: Barbara Krasnoff, Keith R.A. DeCandido, John Grant, Mark Oshiro, Ian Randal Strock, April Grey
LOCATION: Ballroom 4
DATE: March 10, 2018
TIME: 11:30 am – 12:45 pm

Readings
Readers: Barbara Krasnoff, Susan Hanniford Crowley, Elektra Hammond, Teel James Glenn
LOCATION: Ballroom 2
DATE: March 10, 2018
TIME: 4:00 pm – 5:15 pm

Re-examining Childhood Favorites Through Adult Eyes
Should I re-read that novel that I loved when I was a kid, but that I now suspect was actually racist/sexist/just plain lousy?
Panelists: Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Darrell Schwietzer, Barbara Krasnoff, R. Rozakis
LOCATION: Ballroom 4
DATE: March 10, 2018
TIME: 5:30 pm – 6:45 pm

Coming up: Lunacon

Lunacon is a science fiction convention that has been around for a very long time — according to its website, the first one was in 1957 and had 65 attendees. It’s happening again next weekend (April 7-9) with a nice bunch of NY-area writers and fans (including me).

It’s in Tarrytown, NY — a day trip from NYC –so if you want to (and can), drop by the Westchester Marriott and say hi. Here are the panels where you can find me:

Friday

The Politics of Villains and Monsters
Grand Ballroom G
7:30 PM
The villains of speculative fiction (and fiction in general) often reflect the politics of their own times. What are examples of this in the past and how do writers go about avoiding this now? Who are “today’s” villains showing up in SF now and from the past?

Saturday

Writers Groups
101 Hudson
12:00 PM
Why join a Writers Group? What types of Writers Groups exist? How are they organized? What groups are in the tri-state area? Audience questions welcome.

Reading: The Ladder-Back Chair
Dutchess Reading
2:00 PM
I thought I’d read the story that’s appearing in the current issue of Mythic Delirium.

My Character Is Not Me
Hudson
4:00 PM
How do you write a character who is completely different from you? Different cultures, different perspectives, different life experiences… And how do you make that character who is so unlike you someone your readers can accept?

Upcoming conventions

Although I don’t attend a lot of conventions, I actually have two coming up within the next couple of months.

First up is next weekend: I’ll be doing a reading and appearing in a panel on women in SF at Heliosphere con on Saturday, March 11th in Tarrytown, NY. Heliosphere is a brand new con that will be taking place over the entire weekend; unfortunately, I’ll only be able to be there on Saturday, but if you’ve got the time, you should definitely check it out.

And then, on April 7-8, I’ll be attending Lunacon 2017, also in Tarrytown (that must be a really hoppin’ community!). Lunacon has been around for a very long time, and Jim & I used to go every year. We’ve neglected it in recent years, but we will be attending it this year at its new digs — only Friday and Saturday, since it is unfortunately scheduled a bit close to Passover. But if you want to come by and spot me wandering in the halls, stop and say hi!

Oh, and a final thank you to Bill Shunn for inviting me to read yesterday (Saturday, March 4th) at the monthly Line Break reading series, which takes place at Q.E.D. in Queens. It was a huge amount of fun.

Thanks for a nice weekend at Capclave

Capclave dodoJust a brief note to thank all the folks at Capclave who made the weekend so nice.

There are way too many to mention here. I would definitely start with our good friends Ben Zuhl, Lowry Taylor and their son Will, who always act as very gracious hosts when we come to the D.C. area.

Tom Doyle, who not only did yeoman service on the Linguistics in SF panel (along with C.S. MacCath and Lawrence Schoen, while I played moderator), but also gave a wonderfully dramatic reading from his upcoming novel and sat in on my own reading. (And who, along with a gentleman whose name I did not note down, was gracious enough to listen attentively while ignoring the workmen setting up tables at the back of the room.)

The other folks on my panels, such as Lawrence, Brian Lewis and Sarah Pinsker, who kept the panel Your Day Job As Your Muse going, despite the fact that it took place in the first timeslot of the con, before most people had gotten there. (And an extra thanks to Sarah, whose reading of her lovely short story I attended). The wonderfully informative panel on Crowdfunding and Alternative Funding for Writers, which I also moderated and which featured Bill Campbell, Neil Clarke and Alex Shvartsman. (And an extra thanks to Alex for the breakfast ticket!)

And finally, all the people, too numerous to mention, who chatted, listened, spoke on panels, or who just hung out and made it a really nice weekend (including, of course, the organizers). My apologies to all those whose names I haven’t mentioned. Hope to see you again soon.