Thursday, May 27, 2010

BayCon 2010 Programming Schedule

Baycon touts itself as "the largest science fiction and fantasy convention in the San Francisco Bay Area"; sadly, it is currently the only annual convention in the Bay Area.

In the last 15 or so years, I've only missed a few BayCons. I recall two of those misses in recent years... The convention used to be held at the DoubleTree Hotel (formerly the Red Lion) in San Jose. The first year that the hotel had begun charging for parking, I wasn't scheduled for any panels (my fault: I had changed email addresses in the fall of the previous year, and neglected to contact BayCon with my change of e-address, so they were unable to reach me) -- which turned out to be a very good thing. I arrived at the hotel Saturday morning, and the hotel, in their infinite wisdom, had limited the available parking in their lot; I simply couldn't find a place to park, so, in frustration, I backed the car up (there wasn't even enough open space to drive through/around to the exit), and left; I didn't return to the convention that weekend. Fortunately, the convention site has since changed to the Hyatt Regency in Santa Clara (next to the Santa Clara Convention Center) so parking is no longer an issue. I also missed last year's convention due to a serious illness in my extended family that necessitated a trip to Southern California, so even though I was scheduled to participate at BayCon, I unfortunately had to bail a day or two before the con.1

But this year, assuming all goes well through the remainder of today, as well as tomorrow, I will yet again be participating in BayCon. Here is my schedule for Saturday and Sunday:
4:00 PM Saturday, San Tomas 811:
Publishing Credits: What Matters, What Doesn't, and Why

Not all publishing credits are created equal -- some will boost a career while others will injure it. Which are which and why are they in each category? And how can a career downer become a career booster?

Panelists: Marty Halpern (M), A. Kovacs, Nick Mamatas, Jay Ridler, Scott Sigler, Doug Berry

10:00 AM Sunday, Camino Real 826: Iron Editors

Normally, any "writers’ workshop" is a private, behind-closed-doors affair, inviting rumors on ancient and tribal rites involving Styrofoam, marshmallows, and duct tape. This panel is designed to bring to the public what the process looks and sounds like. Using submissions from the audience members, our panelists will quickly mark up and present a critique. All of our Iron Editors have been published themselves, and have a very good idea of what a story needs to get published. To participate bring up to 2 double-spaced pages of creative writing either to the panel or drop it off in the box at the Info Desk. You must be present to have your submission critiqued! The more -- the merrier!! Also, non-submitting Audience Members are more than welcome.

The Iron Editors: Kent Brewster (M), Marty Halpern, Tom Saidak, Lori White, Doug Berry

2:00 PM Sunday, Alameda 105: Judging a Cover by Its Book

Many book covers are created with little to no information about the story it will be attached to. Can you tell a good book by the cover? And how much of that is the artist's fault? When did an artist’s rendering convince you to buy a book? And how many times did you regret it?

Clare Bell, Marty Halpern, Wanda Kurtcu (M), Lee Moyer, Doug Berry

So, that's my schedule for this weekend; fortunately not a too-busy one. I do plan on pulling together some information, books, and cover art tomorrow, to use as reference material for the three panels. I will also be at the con hotel for at least the first half of Monday, which allows me to relax a bit and meet up with anyone, should the need arise.

I hope to see you at the convention this weekend. Check out any (or all) of my panels if the subject matter interests you, and be sure to stop by, say hello, and introduce yourself.

By the way, though my co-edited anthology Is Anybody Out There? isn't officially released until June 1, I will have copies available for sale at the con. I'm trying to work out a deal to have them available in the dealers room, but if not -- or regardless -- I will personally have copies available.


1 When I missed last year's BayCon, I also missed my meet up for lunch/dinner with author Kage Baker (and her sister Kathleen Bartholomew), which I wrote about previously in my blog post "In the Company of Kage Baker."

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