Tuesday, June 23, 2015

ApolloCon Recap and SoonerCon Schedule

Well, y'all - I can't possibly tell you about the time I just had at ApolloCon.  But they say a picture is worth a thousand words, so maybe I can show you instead.

Oh, wait.  Yeah.  No, I can't show you either, because I was so flat-out for the entire weekend that I didn't think to take a single picture.  Curses!

Well, words it is then.  Okay, so try to imagine a swanky cocktail party, a bazaar full of strange and wonderful novelties, a free all-you-can-eat buffet, The Little Writers Workshop That Could, and about 200 of the Lone Star State's finest nerds.  Oh, and a cardboard cutout of Mr. Spock beaming people up to the aforesaid buffet.  That's pretty much ApolloCon.

This was a new experience for me, because even though it was a pretty cozy con, I was absolutely booked every single minute.  If I wasn't actually scheduled on something, I was prepping for it.  In con-ops begging for help printing flyers an hour before my reading. On the treadmill at the hotel gym at midnight the night before the workshop, pen in hand, critiquing submissions at 1.3 miles an hour.  Bolting straight from the 2:00 panel to the parking garage so we could go see the phenomenal Jenny Martin's signing event at the little indie bookstore down the road (oh, friends, we must talk more about Jenny Martin) and still make it back for the 4:00 panel.

This book, you guys.  This freaking book!
(It is a whole other blog post)
Needless to say, I was in hog heaven.

It's like... you know, I was telling a friend last week about how there's this weird new ugliness in me now that I'm Out There, this horrible tacky tapeworm in my gut that's got me starving for attention and recognition and praise. I keep cramming that stuff in my face, sucking up every bit of limelight I can get, but that nasty little parasite always wants more.  It's so hard to even know what 'enough' is anymore.

This weekend, though, I was full.  Literally, in that my schedule was full, and figuratively, in that I never had time to worry about whether I was doing enough, being seen enough, etc. etc. etc. I just took all the minutes that I had and USED them, and it felt so good.  It gives me hope that I won't always be this ravenous - that there is a place somewhere between me and J.K. Rowling where I will be able to feel like a stable, successful, satisfied person.

I tell you what, though: if there is a happy medium, it is between these two ladies.
That is a whole other blog post too!

In the meantime, I continue to Do All the Things!  Here is a digital selection from the past week:

Upgrade Your Story #76 - The divine Ally Bishop has graciously taken me under her wing, helping me to fail less at social media - and we made a podcast about it!  If you are likewise struggling to figure out the Tweet Zone and the Face Space, consider this a workout video you can do at home, and me the squishy lady in the unitard at the back who makes you feel better about yourself.  (We also talk about the art of crafting atypical characters and pushing your story to the next level - it's good stuff.)

SFsignal Mind Meld - in which we wax euphoric about our "pull list" of favorite authors (and I go a little bit bananas about Portuguese fish-ladies in sensible shoes)

EDIT: Website looks broken at this exact moment - will activate the link as soon as I can bring it up

And even though I probably shouldn't share this, I just can't not: here is the best three-star review I've ever gotten.  I'm so in love!

Anyway, no time to wallow in anything - it's T-4 four days to SoonerCon, and I'm packing my waders in case the car floats away on the drive up.  If you can get there, come find me - here is my schedule!

SoonerCon Schedule

Friday the 26th:

4:00PM - Mann - Elf Envy: Our Fascination With the Fantastic

What does the popularity of supernatural beings (wizards, vampires, etc.) say about their fans? Are we yearning to break free of the mundane? Do we secretly wish to break society’s rules? If everyone is special, is no one special?

Saturday the 27th:

10:00AM - Koffee Klatch - Ballroom D

(This one is you, me, and a round table - come and have a chat!)

1:00PM - Maynard - The History of the Earth and Fantasy

The fantasy genre often draws from real-world historic events to tell a story. Authors discuss their favorite parts of actual history which inspire their fantasy works, and which parts they choose to leave in the past.

4:30PM - Rice - Reading

"Do you believe in interspecies dating?" Saddle up for a cowboys-and-fishmen romp from renowned 'rural fantasy' author Tex Thompson!

5:00PM - Maynard - Cleaving the Funny Bone - Humor in SF/F

How is humor used to tell a story? What kind of humor works best in various fan genres? Is there anything not funny in worlds of endless possibility?

Sunday the 28th:

1:00PM - Maynard - Defeating Writers Block

Professional writers give helpful tips and tricks for working your way out of a literary rut.


  1. Yeah! I just need, like, ten of you there to do the whole "go hang with an author I've never heard of" thing. Fire up the clone-o-mizer!