Memorial Day and Balticon—the two go together like fun and three-day weekends. Balticon is the premier Maryland regional science fiction and fantasy convention, which this year runs from May 28-31 at the Marriott Hunt Valley Inn. Tanya Huff will be the Writer Guest of Honor, but that’s only the beginning, folks: Gail Carriger, Keith R.A. DeCandido, Laura Anne Gilman, Gail Z. Martin, Jeri Smith-Ready, Maria Snyder… and, well, me.
This year I snagged five fabulous panels. Hope to see you there.
Friday, 7 p.m.
Are You Sure You Want to Go There? Writing about the darker things in life: Rape. Torture. Childhood trauma. Sex with Dwarves. Sometimes it's done for a laugh. Sometimes it is done for an emotional response. Sometimes, we ask ourselves "What was THAT all about?!" So why not ask the pros who do it? When is shock essential to the story, and when is it sensational? Find out if authors add in moments of terror and extreme situations in order to surprise an audience, or as an alternative to group therapy. Jennifer Andrea, Allison Duncan, Chris Lester, Tee Morris (moderator) and Jean Marie Ward.
Friday, 10 p.m.
Broad Universe Rapid Fire Reading – Seven Broad Universe authors resent tasty, bite-sized readings of their work that will leave you hungry for more. Danielle Ackley McPhail, Roxanne Bland (moderator), Elaine Corvidae, Kelly A. Harmon, Gail Z. Martin, Roberta Rogow and Jean Marie Ward.
Saturday, 11:30 a.m.
The Many Faces of Fantasy or the Road to Victory – Peter Beagle once divided fantasy into High and Low categories. One web site lists more than 20 sub-genres. Let's discuss some examples of these. Can we say that Frodo Baggins and Vicky Nelson are characters from the same genre? What is urban fantasy? Is it the same as contemporary fantasy? Elwin Cotman(m), Tanya Huff, Misty Massey, Darrell Schweitzer, Jean Marie Ward
Sunday, 6 p.m.
Creating Three Dimensional Characters – When writing an adventure or a story, having characters that the readers can get into is half the battle. If the readers or players become intrigued by the characters, then the rest of the story will fall into place. Join our writers as they discuss creating compelling characters. Gail Carriger, C.J. Henderson, Kory Kaese (moderator), Bernie Mojses, and Jean Marie Ward.
Sunday, 7 p.m.
The Legendary Triple Launch – Bad-Ass Faeries 3: In All Their Glory, Dragon's Lure, and New Blood. Faeries, dragons and vampires; a little bit of something for everyone. See writers in costume try to read their works. There will be too many of us to name. And yes, I will be wearing wings. Be afraid, be very afraid.