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Thursday Events


3:00 PM

Pacific 1: When I Was a Kid, We Didn’t Have . . . Rights.

Why are dystopian societies dominating YA fiction at the moment? What are they speaking that kids need to say? Do teens, despite all their networking sites and internet opportunities to gathering power for a cause and informing many people almost instantly, still feel they have no control? Not since the 1970s has there been such distrust emanating from fantasy and adventure fiction for the young. What societal factors are causing this surge?

Marissa Lingen (M), John Pitts, Lissa Price, Chandra Rooney, Dan Wells

Pacific 2/3: The Coral Sword: Material Culture of Undersea Civilizations

Captain Nemo bragged about how he and his men were entirely supplied by the sea. Some fantasy creatures and cultures never go onto dry land. What would an undersea society look like? What and how might they eat? (No fire!) What would their cities look like? (Gravity, not so much of a problem.)            

Ctein, Sharon Mock, Eddie Schneider, Dave Smeds, Walter Jon Williams (M)

Pacific 4/5: Reading - Robert E. Vardeman

Pacific 6/7: Reading - Michael Underwood

3:30 PM

Pacific 4/5: Reading - Patrick Tomlinson

Pacific 6/7: Reading - Frances Gross

4:00 PM

Pacific 2/3: You’ve Got Science in My Fantasy!

In Operation Chaos, Poul Anderson’s shapeshifters’ abilities were limited by the law of conservation of mass. Do such considerations enhance the narrative?

Gregory Benford, Yves Meynard, Brent Weeks,L. E. Modesitt, Edward Willett (M)

Pacific 4/5: Reading - Barbara Randall Kesel

Pacific 6/7: Reading - Deborah Coates

4:30 PM:

Town and Country: Opening Ceremonies

Neil Gaiman, Parke Godwin, Shawna McCarthy, Val Ontell, Ruth Sanderson, Connie Willis

5:00 PM:

Town and Country: Fact is Stranger Than Fantasy: Animals in Reality and Fiction – A Special Presentation by the San Diego Zoo

It's one thing to read about animals and make them an integral part of your story line. It's another to see them in the flesh, to understand their real traits and how they act, move, eat, sleep, live; to make your story more realistic by incorporating the actuality of the animals you write about. Here’s your chance to be inspired by strange but real animals from the San Diego Zoo.

Pacific 4/5: Reading - Carol Berg

Pacific 6/7: Reading - Kater Cheek


Pacific 4/5: Reading – Lena Coakley

Pacific 6/7: Reading - Erin Cashier

8:00 PM

Pacific 1: Sea-Girls Wreathed With Seaweed Red and Brown

We have lingered in the chambers of the sea /By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown/Till human voices wake us, and we drown. - T.S. Eliot, “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”

Mermaids, Undines, Sirens, Nøkk, Ho-ha’-pe: Many cultures have tales of beautiful sea people who lure humans to their death or distruction. What myths exist? How have these beings been used in fantastic literature? (The USA Today believes that mermaids are the hot new supernatural entities.) How have

Kelley Caspari (M), Theodora Goss, Stina Leicht, Ross E. Lockhart

Pacific 2/3: The Role of Class in Fantasy and Horror

Science fiction often deals with class conflict. How does fantasy and horror pursue the same concepts? Are vampires and elves the bourgeoisie? Are werewolves and orcs the working class? Who are the working class heroes of our genre?

John Hornor Jacobs, Jeff Mariotte (M), Kirstyn McDermott, Kari Sperring, Kathryn Sulliva, Will Shetterly

Pacific 4/5: Reading – Suzanne Church

Pacific 6/7: Reading - Emily Skaftun

8:30 PM

Pacific 4/5: Reading - Karen Lord

Pacific 6/7: Reading – Janni Lee Simner

9:00 PM

Pacific 1: Out From Under the Bed: Monster as Protagonist

Writing from the perhaps less than sympathetic point of view of a true monster is a unique challenge. The writer is asked to bring the monster out into the light, and write from the point of view of a creature whose history is inherently alienating. Panelist discuss the history of the monstrous protagonist in literature: John Gardner's Grendel, Ann Carson's Autobiography of Red, and, of course Frankenstein, and of ways of creating empathy for monsters - even when, perhaps, they are doing horrible things.

Peter Brett (M), Christine Cody, Maria Dahvana Headley, Nick Mamatas, Shannon Page

Pacific 2/3: The Ship (or Dirigible) as a Fantastical Character
      They’re more than a setting; that’s why we give them names. From Catellus to Paragon and Althea, some have even given ships voices in literature. Are they always more than just a means of transportation? Should writers be surprised when they discover their ship is speaking to them?

Barb Galler-Smith, Laurel Anne Hill, Robert Redick, S. M. Stirling (M)

Pacific 4/5: Reading - C. S. E. Cooney

Pacific 6/7: Reading - Brenda Cooper

9:30 PM

Pacific 4/5: Reading - Ben Loory

10:00 PM

Pacific 1: How to Survive the Coming Zombie War

Nancy Holder (M), Gini Koch, Stephen Saffel, Wendy Wagner

Bolt your doors and board your windows.  The zombie hoards are out in force in bookstores everywhere.  Our panel discusses the literature of the apocalypse and reveals the best ways for you to make it through the nightmare. 

Pacific 2/3: Magic and Metaphysics

What makes a magic system believable? Authors and world builders create the rules that govern their magic when the whole point of magic, one would think, is to break the rules. Is it reasonable to try to constrain magic by the laws of nature? Bonewitz proposed a whole set of rules based on principles such as similarity and contagion? Is a logical and consistent magical system actually magic?

Ted Chiang, Kristin Janz, Peter Orullian, Mark Teppo (M)

10:30 PM

Pacific 4/5: Reading - Eileen Gunn


Last updated: 10/24/11
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