Thursday, October 24, 2013

OryCon 35 Schedule

I'll be a panelist at Orycon again this year. Yay! Here's my schedule:

Friday, Nov. 8

noon Backstory Bedlam
     I love backstories. They make good short stories later on when I'm obsessively thinking about a book I've already finished and published and can't touch and then a character's backstory just has to, must be told! Knowing that's a possibility keeps me from vomiting every last detail onto the page.

2pm Publishing Your Ebook
     Apparently I'm moderating this monster. I think my main job will be to make sure that the panelists talk slowly enough for the audience to take notes. I'm thinking about bringing a handout. Finding good info about ebook publishing from amid the vast hoards of people trying to make money on formatting books for you and people who do a terrible job but think they do a fantastic job and want to tell you exactly how to do it like they do, not to mention the folks who publish their stuff before it's really ready ... yeah, it's a mess. We'll get you on the right track, don't worry.

5pm Choose a Monster and Write Their Story
     This should be totally fun, and if you don't think so, you're a poopyhead who has cruelly smothered your inner monster. Er, child, I meant child. It'll be a great way to shake loose the last vestiges of the everyday world and get into the spirit of the con.

10pm Writing Believable Sex Scenes
     Let's just start with the basics of how to not make your reader laugh unless you intend them to laugh during your character's passionate moment of pleasure (or plunge into intimate darkness) and go from there, okay?

Midnight Handling Sexuality with Dignity
     I have no idea why they think I'm qualified to talk about dignity, but I'm game for putting on my serious face to talk about whatever, wherever and with whoever in what position ... while being respectful or at least aware of the audience.

Saturday Nov. 9

11am Political Systems in SF
     Game on! I'm excited about this one. Greek forum in a virtual arena anyone? How about the economics behind feudalism driving the political power granted to a particular senator? What about a true democracy via text messaging your vote and the unintended, (evil, naturally) consequences.

5pm Science and Spirituality
     I'm actually dreading this one a little bit, which means it should be an exciting panel. I can't be the only pagan to study physics ... am I?

6pm The Kami and Rory Show
     Actually, this is a half-hour reading slot that my DH and I share. May be prefaced a sparring match to see who goes first. There may be chocolate but you have to show up on time or it's gonna be all gone. I haven't decided what to read yet. If I remember closer to the con, I'll clue y'all in.

9pm Keeping it Clean – or at least not so dirty
     I love this topic. It's all about the bad words that only comedians are supposed to use in public. Let's get real and use the whole language, and maybe some other languages ... and try not to embarrass ourselves too much. Have you seen the Veronica Mars episode where she's at the college and the college guy who uses Frack instead of F*ck? Her expression and reaction? Yeah. That's what you're up against, SF writers.

10pm Smut, Gore and More
     Probably my favorite panel of the con. This is where I get a little political and thrash against the confines of American culture. But also, I'd like to see some discussion about sex, violence, and the glorification thereof.

Midnight Fifty Shades of Dreck
     I keep meaning to read it. Really I do. But what I think we're mostly going to talk about is sex (again, I know!) Non-vanilla sex. Don't get me wrong, I like vanilla ....

Sunday Nov. 10

10am  Infrastructure
     In fiction. Sewers or lack thereof, agriculture, air scrubbers ... why does every protagonist in a futuristic society have to be a scientist, a cop or a teacher? Let's get some air scrubber engineers in there, or a garbage hauler.

3pm Gardening in Fantasyland
     OMG, fantasy horticulture. Heaven! Plus, if you want, bring your real-world gardening questions and I'll try to answer them. BTW, my amarylis is like four years old now and it's soooo big, and my orange tree has two proto-oranges on it. I love this growing season! It's so long, and firm, and soon at the end it'll begin to glisten with moisture ....  Oops. Sorry. This is *not* a panel about sex or violence or use of profanity. It's about plants. My obsession. My guilty pleasure. It'll be a great way to wrap up the con. And if no one shows up to listen, I'll be there on my laptop working on a book or plant geeking with a fellow panelist or two if they're obsessed like me.

I think that's everything. I've got a really busy schedule.

BTW, if you're a panelist and you *don't* have a busy schedule and you want one for next year, here's what you do:

You volunteer for every conceivable panel you would deign to attend, and if you're only vaguely interested, rate it low, which I think is high. Check the scale. It's at the top of the page. Lots of panelists pick 5 for their favorite when 5 actually means that you'll do it if they drag you to the panel and chain you to the chair. Also, send programming a note if you'd like to do a special presentation, and be sure to check the reading and/or autograph session boxes if they're there, even if it looks like it's intended for someone else. That will at least start a dialogue with programming.

Be available all day every day if at all possible.

Suggest panels right after you fill out the form.

Speaking of the form, fill it out early and often, and if you've had trouble with the form going through in the past, send an email asking if they got it.

Most panelists who have trouble getting on panels pick the five panels they want to do, and are available for maybe six hours on Saturday and four on Sunday. That will usually get them zero panels, or one. Not because programming is punishing them, but because you won't be the only person on the panel, right? And all other sorts of people will also want to be on the panel, and their schedules will have to be juggled with yours, and if all theirs match up for 6pm and you said you're only good until 6pm ... you'll get bumped off because the panel ends at 7pm. The other thing that kills their schedule is if only one or two other people volunteer for the panel, and all three of you have such divergent schedule needs and conflicts that the only person available for the panel is you. Then the panel won't happen. If you love a panel idea so much that you're willing to do it as a solo presentation, again, email programming so that they know that.

I think I volunteered for half the panels being offered this weekend, and I made myself available until 2am. As a result ... here I am.

See you at the con!

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