« The Hugo Awards | Main | Nippon 2007 Wins Site Selection »

September 05, 2004

Saturday: Panel reports

The first panel I attend is on paranormal romance, with Catherine Asaro, Charlaine Harris, Sue Krinard, Sandra McDonald as moderator, and Diane Turnshek, who I realize I was working with on Wednesday night, hanging signs on the pillars in the concourse. Some things that spring to mind: paranormal romance is on the rise, and while angsty werewolves and sexy vampires have their place, the field has a lot more than that going on. One conclusion, in the words of Diane Turnshek: science fiction and romance go together like peanut butter and chocolate. After the panel, I head out to spend far too much money in the dealer's room.

Afterwards, I head over to the panel on Tough Love for New Writers, with Gavin Grant, David G. Hartwell, Steve Miller, Priscilla Olson, and Teresa Nielsen Hayden. I already know most of the reasons why nobody should ever be a writer, so I'm not learning new information, but the discussions of why SFWA membership should never be a primary life goal and the able career planning advice of Gavin Grant ("[What you should try to do is] write, and don't get published, and die. And you can do those things") make it a fun-- is depressing-- panel. My favorite bit comes at the very end, however, when Teresa Nielsen Hayden tells us that if you're a person who can't do anything but be a writer-- if you're someone who will write no matter how much you try not to-- then you might as well try to write well, and get someone to pay you for it. I find myself liking this advice.

At the end of the panel I rush to the Concourse to sign up for a literary beer, making it barely in time as the last signature on the list. I then head up to the Snowball Earth presentation, which is being given by an old professor of mine, Paul Hoffman. I'm running late, but I figure I can slip in the back and then go up and say hi afterwards.

When I arrive, however, the presentation hasn't started-- and Paul Hoffman is nowhere to be seen. Janine Ellen Young volunteers to moderate a panel until Hoffman arrives, takes the stage, and asks is anyone in the audience knows anything about Snowball Earth-- and since I took a seminar from Hoffman which wound up focusing on the Snowball, I raise my hand and wind up on the panel. Janine Ellen Young moderates wonderfully. Also pinch-hitting on the panel-- and doing a great job-- is Richard Lovett, who's working on an article on Snowball Earth for Analog. I periodically burble about stratigraphic sequences and carbon dioxide and hope I'm making something approaching sense. The audience asks great questions, and I walk out of the thing feeling rather like I got hit by a lemon wrapped around a brick, only in a good way. Mind you, the real pan galactic gargle blasters won't be coming for a few more hours.

Posted by Gen Jules Reynolds at 01:57 AM in 5-Saturday | Permalink


Post a comment