So, the con was awesome. Connected with great people, picked up good tips and accomplished the business I went to accomplish, all the while having a great time. I found the whole milieu inspiring. The panel I presented on was entitled, “Writing In Spite of Your Environment,” and for me Denvention was a part of that — or perhaps I wrote because of my environment. On the drive to Denver I did a little bit of writing; the first couple of days I managed to squeeze in maybe 2 hours a day of writing. Saturday and Sunday, as well as in the car both days driving back I wrote almost non-stop (well, I had to stop a bit Saturday night to see the Hugos). Very productive, and I am very pleased with where my writing is going right now.
The sessions continue to be great — too many to choose among — and it is wonderful to hear about writing and the business straight out of the mouths of top authors and agents. The other thing is, of course, that you recognize them when you meet them. Although, that may not always be the best thing. My good friend, Kim Greyson, who is in charge of guests for World Fantasy (which will be in Calgary in October) knows EVERYONE, so last night he introduced me to writer David Coe. The first thing I said was, “I know you — where have we met?” He was a little confused; then I realized — I’d seen him on a panel. Oops! But he was very gracious about the mistake.
Parties, of course, are where a lot of the business is done. I fell into conversation with a top agent, Lucienne Diver, who gave me her card, then Kim introduced me to Kathleen Doherty who offered to place my manuscripts in front of the right editor at Tor. What an opportunity! Thanks, Kim! Also, for the first time, I got to make an introduction. I introduced Randy McCharles to Sheila Williams at Asimov’s. I read in her June editorial that she is looking for humour and the first person I thought of was Randy because he is not only an awesome writer, he writes humour. So, once the craziness dies down, he said he would send something to Asimov’s.
Would have posted earlier, but I only just today got Internet.
I’m very much enjoying Denvention. Sessions have been interesting and informative with lots of big name authors, agents and editors providing advice. One thing about advice is that once you hear it, it often makes so much sense you think, “Why didn’t I realize that before? It’s so simple!” John Scalzi, Michael Kabongo (agent) and Mary Robinette Kowal (Nebula nominee) gave a really funny panel on schmoozing that included, “What is a great elevator pitch?” Mary’s pitch for one of her current novels is “Jane Austin — with magic!” Just having a couple of examples like that is really helpful. So instead of the one I thought of earlier for my novel (“an adventure fantasy in which a journeyman thief is politically manipulated into. . . “) I’m thinking of, “adventure fantasy with thieves and con men.” Maybe I can still work on it (my daughter, Heather — a wonderful writer in her own right — could probably make it better), but at least it’s shorter and hopefully gets to the cool part sooner. Let’s hope I get a chance to try it out.
As for shmoozing, I’ve done a little. I had dinner last night with Edge Press publisher Brian Hades, and up-and-coming authors Ed Willett and Adrian (KA) Bedford. The day before, our table included L.E. Modesitt. Yesterday, I was on hand when friend, writer and OnSpec editor, Barb Galler-Smith learned that her first book has been picked up by Edge Press and will likely see its launch at Anticipation World Con in Montreal next summer. Very exciting news!! I also touched base with Analog editor Stanley Schmidt (who suggested I sit on a few panels — which I will be doing tomorrow), good friend Rob Sawyer, and generous mentor, Mike Resnick. Today, I signed copies of Tesseracts Ten and Tesseracts Eleven with Randy McCharles, a wonderful SF humorist whose stories appear in Tess Eleven and upcoming in Tesseracts Twelve. Afterwards, I volunteered at the SFWA table.
Tomorrow I sit on a panel on “Writing in Spite of Your Environment,” followed, of course, by the Hugo Awards (keeping fingers crossed for Rob’s book, Rollback). Looking forward to it!
June’s publication of “Back” in Analog Science Fiction and Fact was my third and qualifying publication for SFWA membership, so I am now a SFWAn. I was thrilled to see that “Back” received two recommendations for a 2008 Nebula Award. Ten recommendations puts a work on the nomination ballot, so I am hopeful that others will read “Back” and recommend it as well (you must be a member of SFWA to do so). It is available to read here.
This spring I attended the Keycon Silver Anniversary in Winnipeg which was fun and informative. Luke Ski performed, and he was very funny, and the masquerade was one of the best I have ever seen. I attended Robert J. Sawyer’s book launch of “Identity Theft,” and was pleased to see “Phantom of the Space Opera” in the video room. I sat on three panels with Rob Sawyer, Jean-Loius Trudel, Virginia O’Dyne and Ed Willett, and had lunch with Eric Flint and dinner with Dave Duncan. In addition I attended the Aurora Awards Banquet and was thrilled to see my friend, Hayden Trenholm win the Aurora for Best Work, Short Form, for “Like Water in the Desert,” which by the way, was an awesome read.
Looking forward to reconnecting with lots of people in a couple of weeks at Devention!
I have a sweet little horror story called, “Director’s Cut.” I thought Brutarian might be the market for this one, so I sent it off last week. Wish me luck!