Zeus sits among the books I have received in the last week or so and does not judge me for not having put up a new “Just Arrived” piece. He does judge me for having so many books on my side table that he cannot lie down, however. My punishment will undoubtedly come in the night, when the Paw of Vengeance inserts itself into my left nostril whilst I sleep. It is a fair sentence.
A reminder to Minnesotans, Wisconsinites, Iowans and Dakotans (and, heck, Manitobans and Ontarians) that I’ll be among all y’all in less than two weeks, as Substitute Guest of Honor at Minicon 46 in Bloomington, Minnesota, which you can still get memberships for and participate in the general revelry and hilarious hijinx! And yes, the hijinx will be hilarious. There’s no point in having hijinx unless they are.
And what will I be doing whilst at Minicon 46? Below, please to find my schedule of events.
The Future Isn’t What It Used To Be - 4:00 PM Friday (April 22nd)
Depictions of the world following a lack of cheap energy seem to be replacing the glitzy hi-tech future and post-nuclear holocaust in SF. Will the trends continue? Is this future more plausible than the earlier versions? How much do fictional futures have to say about the times in which they are written?
Panelists: John Scalzi, Laura Krentz, Neil Rest, Greg Johnson, Magenta Griffith
Opening Ceremony - 7:00 PM Friday
Welcome to Minicon 46! Meet Guests of Honor John Scalzi and Chas Somdahl. Revel in announcements from the Minicon Committee. See and be seen. Maybe a bit of Shockwave Radio Theater humor, you never know.
Panelists: David E Romm, John Scalzi, Chas Somdahl, Kevin Austin, Joel Phillips
Successful Writing In the Digital Age 10:00 PM Friday
Our author Guest of Honor John Scalzi has been writing or editing for the online world for more than fifteen years. How does one survive as a writer in the digital age? How does an internet persona mesh with the introverted lifestyle of an author? What’s the best way to deal with the trolls and haters?
Panelists: John Scalzi, Ctein, Aaron Vander Giessen
Science Literacy Vs. Human Knowledge - 11:30 AM Saturday (April 23rd)
The corpus of human knowledge is growing constantly. How can we even decide what the baseline of scientific literacy should be? What’s the process by which the baseline changes?
Panelists: Chas Somdahl, Kelly Strait, John Scalzi, Howard Davidson, Rob Callahan
John Scalzi Reading and Signing - 2:30 PM Saturday
Programming Note: In addition to reading my own work, I will, with his blessing, read a little from Charles Stross’ upcoming — and excellent – novel, Rule 34. I’m doing this because Charlie was the convention’s original author guest of honor, until personal circumstances required his presence at home. So I’m happy to be able to give his fans a sneak preview here.
John Scalzi, Anton Peterson assisting
John Scalzi Interview - 5:30 PM Saturday
John Scalzi chose not to pursue other career options principally because “use more mayonnaise” does not apply as universally as one might hope. This interview will focus on the path that he chose instead. Questions from the audience are strongly encouraged.
John Scalzi, David E Romm interviewing
Creation Museum Slideshow - 8:30 PM Saturday
John Scalzi shares photos and stories from his visit to “the very best monument to an enormous load of horseshit that you could possibly ever hope to see.” Hilarity ensues.
John Scalzi, Rob Callahan moderating
Common Misconceptions About Publishing - 11:30 AM Sunday (April 24th)
How is the publishing industry structured? What exactly does an author sell to a publisher, and what do publishers want to see? Why are books the length that they are? Published authors and editors talk about their experiences and share their “If I knew then what I know now…” stories.
John Scalzi, Michael Merriam, Patrick Nielsen Hayden, Teresa Nielsen Hayden
Works of John Scalzi - 2:30 PM Sunday
John Scalzi, Patrick Nielsen Hayden
Closing Ceremony - 4:00 PM Sunday
Final thoughts from Guests of Honor Chas Somdahl and John Scalzi. The Assassination of the MN-StF President. Wind down the con. Art show and Medallion Hunt winners, among other announcements. Final thoughts from Concom.
In addition to this I will be doing my usual loitering about in the bar area, visiting parties and otherwise being accessible as Guests of Honor should be. Come on down and join us — you’ll have the sort of fun that only unregenerate nerds can provide! And, truly, that is the best kind. See you there.
My FilmCritic.com column for last week got posted a bit late because of some site redesign issues, but that doesn’t mean it’s not still absolutely critical to your life as you know it. This column is talking about the plan by science fiction film makers to shoot their upcoming films with higher frame rates — and what that will mean for your cinematic experience, both in theaters and at home. Check it out and as always feel free to leave your own thoughts and comments over there.