Well, it's that time of year again: Time to drive and drive and drive through the cold to spend a weekend in a hotel in Boston. Either this is your idea of fun or it isn't -- and there's nothing I can do to shift you from one camp to the other.
Personally, I plan to have a blast at Boskone. If you're there, be sure to say hi.
Here's my schedule:
Friday 18:00 - 18:50, Burroughs (Westin)
A fair number of books and movies depict the end of the world. Now, it's time (relax — from a purely theoretical point of view) to see if they got it right or wrong. We’ll debunk some plausible but ultimately unconvincing scenarios of doom and lay out leading contenders for ways the world might really wind it all up.
Jeffrey A. Carver (moderator), Scott Lynch, Steven Popkes, Michael Swanwick
Reading: Michael Swanwick
Saturday 10:30 - 10:55, Griffin (Westin)
Autographing: Michael Swanwick
Saturday 13:00 - 13:50, Galleria-Autographing (Westin)
Kaffeeklatsch: Michael Swanwick
Saturday 14:00 - 14:50, Galleria-Kaffeeklatsch 2 (Westin)
Writing Great Openings
Saturday 15:00 - 15:50, Marina 2 (Westin)
What elements are necessary for a great opening, and is a great opening necessity for a great novel? Is it even more important to have a great opening in short fiction?
Paul Di Filippo (moderator), ML Brennan, Alexander Jablokov, Michael Swanwick, A.C.E. Bauer
Saturday 16:00 - 16:50, Burroughs (Westin)
Let’s probe an alien for a change. What is it about aliens that captures our imagination? Does a good alien have to be different? Should it necessarily be fascinating … and maybe a bit frightening? Why? Which aliens have awakened our sense of wonder? They have been portrayed as benefactors, conquerors, victims, and even objects of desire: why? What parallels can we draw with human-to-human relationships? Perhaps we should be asking "what is it about humans?"
Walter H. Hunt (moderator), Andrea Hairston, Charles Stross, Michael Swanwick, Patrick Nielsen Hayden
Nifty Narrative Tricks
Sunday 11:00 - 11:50, Harbor I (Westin)
Some SF/F/H writers like to dazzle us with their out-of-the-ordinary storytelling. Let’s discuss such twisty techniques as insidious in-clues, unreliable narrators, unstated genders, shifty time-shifts, uncanny cameos, and more. What other clever things can be done with narrative to make the story more powerful and interesting?
Jo Walton (moderator), Steven Brust, Charles Stross, Michael Swanwick, Darrell Schweitzer