Day

Event Type

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Location

Wednesday, December 15, 2021

4:00 pm EST

Fanzines and Meta Fandom

Kress (Virtual), 4:00 pm EST

Fanzines have been a vital part of science fiction and fantasy from the beginning of modern genre fiction in the 1930s. They provide a record of friends, feuds, fashion, and fascinations. Periodically their demise is predicted, but they are still going strong, drawing in new participants and evolving along with fandom. This is a chance to talk to current and previous Hugo nominees about why they produce fanzines.

Type: Panel

8:30 pm EST

How Magazines Are Changing

Congressional On-Site Viewing (Virtual), 8:30 pm EST

Twenty years ago, a new age of internet magazines started rising alongside the print favorites. Now there are so many different ways to broadcast, produce, and consume short fiction. How are magazines changing to reflect that? We’ll look at how everything has changed over time, from what stories are popular to delivery methods to submissions rules and processes, and speculate about what may be coming next.

Type: Panel

Thursday, December 16, 2021

11:30 am EST

What Makes a Great SFF Audio Book?

Kress (Virtual), 11:30 am EST

There are more audio books on the market every year. This panel will tackle questions such as how much they cost to produce, how to market them, what makes science fiction and fantasy audiobooks good, how to choose the right voice, and what can the reader get from an audio book that they might not get from reading the page?

Type: Panel

1:00 pm EST

To Pseud or Not to Pseud

Older (Virtual), 1:00 pm EST

Is it best to publish under the name in your wallet? Should you have different names for every genre, or put all your work under a single name so your fans can find you? Is it disingenuous to use a pen name to imply an identity that’s not your own, or is this just creative expression? Under what circumstances does using a pen name cross a line? Panelists explore these questions, and the degree to which authors “become” their pen names.

Type: Panel

Working with an Agent

Empire Ballroom, 1:00 pm EST

It’s 2021, do you still need an agent? Typically, yes! Agents are very useful, not only in securing a traditional book deal, but also in handling contract disputes, foreign rights, and helping you land that elusive movie or TV option. Panelists will discuss when and why agents are useful, and how to determine if your agent is doing the best job for you.

Type: Panel

2:30 pm EST

Ask an Editor: Short Fiction Writing

Blue Room, 2:30 pm EST

What makes a good short story? How do you know it’s ready? Where should you send it and how should you respond to comments? This is your chance to ask burning questions to a panel of respected short fiction editors.

Type: Panel

Let’s Judge a Book by Its Cover

Calvert Room, 2:30 pm EST

What makes a good speculative fiction book or magazine cover? How can you give good art direction to help the artist succeed? How do we feel about eye-catching covers that show scenes that aren’t actually in the book? Our artists and publishers cover the subject in as much detail as 50 minutes will allow!

Type: Panel

4:00 pm EST

Ask An Editor: Long-Form Writing

Kress (Virtual), 4:00 pm EST

What makes a good novel? How do you know it’s ready? Where should you send it and how should you respond to comments? This is your chance to ask burning questions to a panel of respected agents and editors.

Type: Panel

Friday, December 17, 2021

11:30 am EST

Publishing in Africa

Thomas (Virtual), 11:30 am EST

There has been an explosion of interest in African science fiction and fantasy internationally. What is the situation of publishing on the continent? What impact has been had by the internet?  What are the highs and lows—and what may be coming next? Is there a downside to authors finding new audiences outside of Africa?

Type: Panel

1:00 pm EST

Crafting an Elevator Pitch

Diplomat Ballroom, 1:00 pm EST

Success is equal parts preparation and luck—so be prepared when luck puts you in the right place at the right time! How do you get ready for a pitch opportunity with an editor or producer, when you may have less than a minute to sell your dream project?

Type: Panel

2:30 pm EST

Publishing Your E-Book

Calvert Room, 2:30 pm EST

What is the process for self-publishing your own e-books? Who should you hire to create a high-quality product and make it stand out? Where can you sell it beyond Amazon? Come and learn how to get your e-books published and noticed by the right readers.

Type: Panel

4:00 pm EST

The Small Press Takeover of Short Fiction

Forum Room, 4:00 pm EST

There was a time, long ago, when short fiction had to be published in one of the “big three” magazines to get popular attention and critical acclaim. The rise of magazines like Clarkesworld, Uncanny, and Beneath Ceaseless Skies, among many others, make markets of today a much more level playing field. We’ll talk about what’s changed and why, and what it means for the state of speculative fiction.

Type: Panel

Writing to Spec

Calvert Room, 4:00 pm EST

Plenty of paid writing jobs involve writing to spec—that is, writing to an assigned topic and style. From comics to licensed properties to ghostwritten novels, writing to spec can be both lucrative and frustrating. How can you find the best compromise between your artistic voice and your client’s expectations? How closely will you be expected to hew to your assignment? What goes into writing a “bible” anyway? Writers and editors who have worked for different companies share their experiences.

Type: Panel

Saturday, December 18, 2021

10:00 am EST

Decentering the U.S. in SFF Publishing

Thomas (Virtual), 10:00 am EST

There are thriving speculative fiction publishers, magazines, writers and communities in many places outside the U.S. How do these communities position themselves relative to other SFF markets and readers? How successful are they?

Type: Panel

Pitching Your Novel to Agents & Publishers

Presidential Board Room, 10:00 am EST

A professional publisher and editor teaches writers how to pitch their novel.

Type: Workshop

What Do We Look for in a Fanzine?

Calvert Room, 10:00 am EST

Everyone on this panel writes fanzines. What that means has changed over the years, but they are all passionate about them. The panel will talk about what excites them, what delights them, and what makes them nominate something for a Hugo.

Type: Panel

11:30 am EST

The Finances of Running a Small Press

Forum Room, 11:30 am EST

How do you make a small fortune in speculative fiction publishing? Start with a large fortune! But seriously folks, how do you keep the doors open and the lights on when you’re a small press–one of many small fish in a very big sea? Is Kickstarting your publications a sustainable practice? What about subscription services?

Type: Panel

4:00 pm EST

Speculative F(r)iction

Harris (Virtual), 4:00 pm EST

Smut? In our speculative fiction? Of course! Let’s talk about what’s trendy in speculative erotica and the state of erotica publishing. What are the current awards, and who judges them? How is erotic romance different from erotica, and is the distinction useful for writers or publishers?

Type: Panel

Sunday, December 19, 2021

10:00 am EST

Preparing Your Manuscript for Submission

Older (Virtual), 10:00 am EST

A small press manager guides participants through the general formatting and submissions guidelines for most publishers and agents. We will provide examples of dos and don’ts for manuscript submissions.

Type: Workshop

11:30 am EST

Assembling an Anthology

Blue Room, 11:30 am EST

The speculative fiction anthology is one of the most popular and enduring forms of publishing in the industry. Crowdfunding and virtual productivity tools have democratized the form so that almost anyone can do it—but should they? How does the beginning anthologist solicit pieces, choose the best ones, and gently reject ones that don’t make the cut? How do they pick and properly curate a theme? How do they order the stories, or does that even matter? Talk with some veteran editors to find out.

Type: Panel

Sailing the Sea of Submissions

Kress (Virtual), 11:30 am EST

What is it like for marginalized or underrepresented writers to navigate submissions and rejections in short fiction? How do such writers consider editorial feedback related to voice or relatability, when it’s possible that feedback could be coming from a place of bigotry or close-mindedness rather than a reflection of their craft?

Type: Panel
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