Philcon 2017 Schedule

November 10, 2017

I’ll be at Philcon this weekend. Here’s my schedule:

Friday

6 pm – Plaza II –  Current Anthologies

7pm – Plaza III – Writing Workshops Worth Your Time (and Money)

Saturday

1pm – Plaza II – Meet the Editors!

Sunday

1pm – Plaza III – Finding a Good Editor

#SFWAPro

 

 

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Philcon 2015 Schedule

November 19, 2015

Today, I reached level 40.

That sounds way cooler than just saying “I turned forty years old,” you know. I celebrated with family and good friends. The best line of the evening, and I am not making this up, was “This is not a rabbi. It’s R2D2.” No context for you.

What better way to continue the celebration into the weekend than to attend a science fiction convention? I’ll be at Philcon starting tomorrow, and here’s where you can find me:

Fri 7:00 PM in Autograph Table (1 hour)
AUTOGRAPHS: JOSEPH BERENATO AND ALEX SHVARTSMAN (2361)

[Panelists: Joseph Berenato (mod), Alex Shvartsman]

Sat 1:00 PM in Plaza III (Three) (1 hour)
INCORPORATING NEW SCIENTIFIC DISCOVERIES INTO OUR WRITING (2138)

[Panelists: Alex Shvartsman (mod), Dr. H. Paul Shuch, David Walton,
Alexis Gilliland, Jon McGoran]

We now know modern humans have Neanderthal DNA. New planets are
being discovered almost on a daily basis. Technology is allowing us
to print organs. What recent discoveries are you putting into your
stories? And where will SF go now that the future is here

Sat 5:00 PM in Plaza II (Two) (1 hour)
THINGS YOU SHOULD READ (BUT DON’T KNOW ABOUT YET) (2226)

[Panelists: Fran Wilde (mod), Dena Heilik, Joseph Berenato, Alex
Shvartsman]

Not every amazing book is a best-seller. Whether it’s an unsung
classic or a recent author, come talk about the fiction you’ve found
that, strangely, nobody else seems to be talking about

Sun 11:00 AM in Crystal Ballroom Three (1 hour)
THE CHANGING FACE OF PUBLISHING (2123)

[Panelists: Sally Wiener Grotta (mod), Russ Colchamiro, Joseph
Berenato, Ian Randal Strock, Alex Shvartsman]

How is it moving away from the conventional New York publishing
scene? There are so many alternatives today (Crowd-sourcing, small
presses, independent publishers and non-print electronics) Will the
big publishers be left in the lurch

Sun 1:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Three (1 hour)
HOW TO SELL YOUR FICTION (2122)

[Panelists: Neil Clarke (mod), Alex Shvartsman, Barbara A. Barnett,
Hildy Silverman, Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Robert E. Waters]

So you have a finally finished a story. What are the main markets?
Who do you want to avoid.

#SFWAPro

 


My PhilCon 2014 Schedule

November 20, 2014

I’m PhilCon-bound this weekend and here’s my event schedule:

Fri 7:00 PM in Plaza III (Three) (1 hour)
SETTING UP A CROWDFUNDING PROJECT (1826)

[Panelists: Danielle Ackley-McPhail (mod), Rob Balder, Neil Clarke, Gil Cnaan, Alex Shvartsman, Alyce Wilson]

Panelists discuss what worked, what didn’t and why. How can you  promote one to make sure it is a success

Fri 8:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Two (1 hour)
DEFYING THE SQUARE CUBE LAW (1796)

[Panelists: Alex Shvartsman (mod), Bob Eggleton, Lawrence Kramer, James Prego]

Consider really huge monsters. Sure we like ’em big and capable of stomping cities, but is there any way to make a Godzilla or Chthulhu plausible

Sat 10:00 AM in Autograph Table (1 hour)
AUTOGRAPHS – NEIL CLARKE, ALEX SHVARTSMAN (2022)

[Panelists: Alex Shvartsman (mod), Neil Clarke]

Sat 3:00 PM in Plaza V (Five) (1 hour)
DOES SCIENCE FICTION NEED TO LIGHTEN UP? (1771)

[Panelists: Alex Shvartsman (mod), Brian Thomas, Berakha Lana Guggenheim, Steve Miller, Robert C Roman, Lee Gilliland]

Has the genre become too serious and pretentious in recent years? Do too many writers feel they are philosophers and teachers?

Sat 6:00 PM in Executive Suite 623 (1 hour)
READING – APRIL GREY, ALEX SHVARTSMAN (2006)

[Panelists: April Grey (mod), Alex Shvartsman]

Sat 9:00 PM in Plaza II (Two) (1 hour)
ELLO FACEBOOK, GET OUT OF MYSPACE. (1728)

[Panelists: Rock Robertson (mod), Gil Cnaan, Muriel Hykes, Suzanne Rosin, Alex Shvartsman]

Well, here we go again. Another social network rears its ugly head and everyone contemplates jumping ship. Discuss as former GEnie members nod wisely.

Sat 10:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Two (1 hour)
FUNNY HORROR STORIES (1769)

[Panelists: Brian Koscienski (mod), Darrell Schweitzer, Alex Shvartsman, Robert Corry, Brian Thomas, April Grey]

There is a fine line between horror and humor.  How do the successful examples of this work

#SFWAPro


PhilCon 2013 Schedule

November 5, 2013

I’ll be at PhilCon this weekend, participating on a variety of panels. I’ll also have a reading and a signing. This is my schedule:

#SFWAPro

    • Fri 7:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Three—“Ender’s Game”: The Book versus The Movie (1504)Just one week before Philcon 2013, Hollywood finally released a film version of the classic SF novel “Ender’s Game”. How did the movie differ from the book. Were the changes necessary, or did they change the tone and theme of the story? Did they do it right?

Andrew C. Murphy (mod), Andrew Breslin, Alex Shvartsman, Tim Souder

    • Sat 11:00 AM in Autograph Table—Autograph: Neil Clarke, Alex Shvartsman (1671)

Neil Clarke (mod), Alex Shvartsman

    • Sat 1:00 PM in Plaza III (Three)—Editing Anthologies: Beyond the Gimmick (1499)Anthologies are often sold on the basis of a gimmick or concept that connects the stories, such as “Killer Rutabagas from Space”. How do you get beyond the gimmick to a work of substance?

Elektra Hammond (mod), Brian Koscienski, Alex Shvartsman, Keith R.A. DeCandido

    • Sat 6:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Two—Becoming a Full Time Writer (1496)How do you become a full time writer? Is that a good idea for you?

Alyce Wilson (mod), Alex Shvartsman, David Sklar, D.L. Carter, Thomas Willeford

    • Sun 11:00 AM in Executive Suite 623—Reading: Alex Shvartsman (1664)

Alex Shvartsman (mod)

    • Sun 2:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Two—Meet the Editors Panel (1535)Magazine and book editors discuss the current fiction markets.

Marvin Kaye (mod), Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Alex Shvartsman, Ian Randal Strock, Neal Levin, April Grey

 


The Birthday Post

November 19, 2012

I turned 37 today. Alert the media. Or don’t. But, editors, please hold those rejection slips until tomorrow, k?

Over the last couple of weeks, I got to attend PhilCon, which was an awesome convention. Although it was a bit smaller than I expected (probably around 1000 people) I had a great time, catching up with old friends  and meeting lots and lots of new ones. I got to participate in discussion panels with the likes of Gardner Dozois, Neil Clarke, and Gordon Linzner and (mostly) held my own!  I’m already contemplating more conventions to attend in 2013!

This photo was blatantly stolen from Michael Haynes’ blog, where he talked about his own PhilCon experience and posted several more photos. And since we roomed together and hung out together for most of the con, I’m in several of those.

Another bit of good news I received literally the day before PhilCon was that Buzzy Magazine accepted “The Tinker Bell Problem.”  It’s a story of a demon who summons a human via a pentagram, expecting the human to use its awesome powers in order to solve all of the demon’s problems! It’s also my second sale to Buzzy and I’m excited that this story will be appearing there sometime in 2013.

I also have an interview up today at the Fantasy Scroll blog by Iulian Ionescu where I talk some about the challenges of being a writer for whom English isn’t a native language, publishing an anthology, and South Park.

Finally, I’m pleased to announce that Stupefying Stories issue 2.1, guest edited by David M. Blake, is hitting the virtual newsstands this week. David put a tremendous amount of work into collecting this issue and interweaving some ideas and concepts throughout multiple stories. It is also about twice as “thick” as a typical issue, and features some truly excellent authors, so you’d do well to check it out when it goes on sale!

 

 

Finally, I’m pleased to announce that Unidentified Funny Objects ARC (Advance Review Copy) is here and has been sent out to various reviewers as of yesterday. If you review books and would like a copy and the press release, please contact me. And if you don’t review books but would like a copy, you can help support UFO by pre-ordering one directly at ufopub.com

 


My PhilCon Schedule

November 4, 2012

 

I’ll be attending PhilCon in Cherry Hill, New Jersey next weekend, and the organizers just sent me my schedule. I will appear on 6 panels over the course of Saturday and Sunday, which are listed below. I want to meet *everyone* so if you want to hang out, e-mail me, Tweet at me, contact me on Facebook or just find me at the con!

 

Sat 10:00 AM in Plaza V (Five) (1 hour)
NON-US  SF AUTHORS

[Panelists: A.C. Wise (mod), David G. Hartwell, Andrew C. Murphy, Alex Shvartsman]

    There are a lot of great authors that just aren’t as popular in the
    US as in other countries.  Who are some of the writers that don’t
    get a lot of attention here that we should be reading

Sat 11:00 AM in Executive Suite C (1 hour)
GAME DESIGN FOR FUN AND (PROBABLY NOT A LOT OF ) PROFIT!

[Panelists: Alex Shvartsman (mod), Eric Avedissian, Joan Wendland, Peter Woodworth, Neal Levin]

What goes into designing a game?  What are some important things
    that many new games miss?  How much playtesting is needed

Sat 1:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Two (1 hour)
GETTING A (KICK)START(ER) ON THAT PROJECT!

[Panelists: Jonah Knight (mod), Eve Okupniak, Alex Shvartsman,  Patricia Wake, Aaron Rosenberg]

    Kickstarter, and other crowdfunding sites, have changed the
    landscape for fundraising to support various creative projects, from
    new games to films to other artistic endeavors.  But setting up a
    crowdfunding campaign can also lead to serious problems, from not
    following through on promised incentives, to not being able to
    complete the project, to serious financial difficulty.  Our
    panelists will talk about how to run a successful crowdfunding
    campaign, and how to avoid the pitfalls

Sat 2:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Two (1 hour)
BEST SF AND FANTASY OF 2012 (1120)

[Panelists: A.C. Wise (mod), Gardner Dozois, Lisa Padol, Alex Shvartsman]

    What are some of the great novels, novellas, and stories out there
    this year?  What is likely to be nominated for awards in the field
    and why

Sun 10:00 AM in Plaza IV (Four) (1 hour)
KILLING HITLER FOR FUN AND PROFIT

[Panelists: Andre Lieven (mod), KT Pinto, Michael F. Flynn, Alex Shvartsman, Glenn Hauman]

    How have various authors treated the idea of trying to change the
    past?  CAN you change the past, and if so, what are the consequences

Sun 2:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Two (1 hour)
IT CAME FROM THE SLUSHPILE

[Panelists: Ray Ridenour (mod), Neil Clarke, Neal Levin, Alex Shvartsman, Gordon Linzner]

    Editors describe really strange things they have received in
    unsolicited submissions.  Some are funny, some are awful, and some
    are just plain sad

 
If you have suggestions, anecdotes or requests for the discussion points on any of the above panels, please post them in the comments! I’m especially eager for some help on the time travel and best-of-2012 panels.