I’ll be at Boskone again this year, because there’s nothing finer than Boston in February, or apparently so I’ve been led to believe, and also, the NESFA folks are fine people who have been very kind to me, so I like to return the favor and let them know I appreciate the support. While at Boskone, I will be doing various things, some of which are legal, and some of which are even planned. Here are my currently scheduled panels and appearances:
Not a damn thing. You’ll probably find me wandering the halls or at the bar.
10:00am: New and Old Horizons: Great Worlds in SF and Fantasy
Panel Description: There is none. I guess we’ll make it up as we go along.
Other Panelists: Stephen C. Fisher, Karl Schroeder
Thoughts: I suspect we’ll be geeking out here, talking about the worlds we like in sf/f, discussing world building in a general sense, and perhaps talking a little bit about how we’ve built up our own universes. I’ve not been on a panel with Mr. Fisher, but Karl is tons of fun on a panel, and also of course smart as hell, and he’s just built a really fabulous world in his Virga series. So this should be interesting. I am the moderator of this panel.
Other Autographers: Paul Park, Melissa Scott
Thoughts: Uh, I’m autographing. Bring books.
3:00pm: Blogging and Live Journals in SF
Panel Description: Blogging is having an impact not only on the world at large but on the SF community in particular. Blogs tell us more about the people in the field, the way the field works, and who is who — and a pace and with a distribution that few if any fanzines could ever match. Blogs influence the directions of our community, can impact awards by making works or their creators better known, and perhaps even influence the works being created. (Or, perhaps the impact is overstated, as the impact of blogs in general may be.) Can writers use blogs to market themselves? Are blogs a way to engage the community (and maybe even potential voters)? The panel looks at blogs within our community and their impact.
Other Panelists: John Joseph Adams, Kathryn Cramer, James D. MacDonald, Teresa Nielsen Hayden
Thoughts: We’re going to have to work a bit to make this not be exactly like every other “blogging and SF” panel in the last three years, but with this lineup I think we can manage. Also, I’ll be moderating this panel too, so I’ll have some leeway in terms of directing the conversation.
4:00pm: Consciousness, AI, and Downloaded Personalities: Separating the possible from the unlikely
Panel Description: Presumably we might already be capable of counting the brain’s 100 billion neurons. How long till we’re also up to modeling? Storing? Streaming your mind like a 99-cent iTune? Creating it from scratch? What’s the latest science on this? What are some practical difficulties? Would this prove there’s no soul? How big is the leap from Clarke’s HAL 9000 to Banks’s Culture Minds?
Other Panelists: Jeffrey A. Carver, Matthew Jarpe, Marvin Minsky, Karl Schroeder
Thoughts: Cool, Marvin Minsky. I am moderating yet again.
10:00am: The Best New Writers: Recent Campbell Award Winners Talk
Panel Description: Fresh winners of our field’s Newbie Nobel give a tip of their tiaras to other notable up-and-comers. What are their best new stories? What topics or trends obsess them? What magazines, small presses, websites, or other venues should we be watching to catch the greatest of the latest? And is it easy being green?
Other Panelists: Elizabeth Bear, Wen Spencer
Thoughts: Newbie Nobel? I prefer “Precocious Pulitzer,” myself.
1:00pm: Beyond the iPod: Neat New Gadgets Last Year and This
Panel Description: From Blu-ray to Xbox 360 to iPhone, Wii to musical pillows to petcams, the nerdy bling has been piling up lately. What’s actually in it for early adopters? What trends look meaningful? What’s coming up soon? Bring your shiniest new toy to show off. Extra geekoboo for the first self-parking Lexus!
Other Panelists: Tobias Buckell, Mark L. Olson, Edie Stern
Thoughts: No doubt I will have many exciting Windows Vista tales to tell by that time.
2:00pm: Literary Beer
Thoughts: For those who don’t know what this is, this is me hanging out in the bar, talking to people who sign up to chat with me. I think next year I’m going to request that they not schedule my lit beer/kaffeeklatch at the same time as people are trying to get the hell out of the convention because they have flights to catch, because it’s likely that this will end up with me and Toby Buckell (who is having his own literary beer at the same time) sitting by ourselves and muttering bitterly. At least I know where he’ll be so we can catch a cab to the airport together. On the other hand, if you ever wanted to have quality time with me by yourself, this will probably be an excellent time to have it.
When I am not on a panel, I am likely to be found wandering about, so if you see me don’t be hesitant to come up and say hello. I’m not exactly the shy and retiring type.
I’ll also note that I will have at least one item in the Mike Ford Auction & Extravaganza. There be may be more than one if I can motivate my lazy ass; no, I won’t be more specific than that, except to say that if I mange to rouse myself from laziness and do this other thing for the auction, it damn well better get a pretty high bid. That’s all I’m going to say about that.
So, who is going to Boskone this year?