Tag: cons

Nebula Awards Weekend


So, I was reminded by the inestimable j_cheney that the Nebula Awards Weekend was fast approaching…

I’ll be there from sometime Thursday in the afternoon (though heavily jet-lagged) to Sunday afternoon. Mostly hanging out in the bar/lobby/etc., except for a few events. Obviously, the Nebula Awards Banquets, and also a signing and a panel.

The signing will be from 5:30 to 7:00pm on Friday, May 20, at the Washington Hilton (1919 Connecticut Ave., NW). Other authors participating include: John Joseph Adams, Christopher Barzak, J. Kathleen Cheney, Tom Doyle, Scott Edelman, Timons Esaias, Cynthia Felice, Andrew Fox, Kerry Frey, Laura Anne Gilman, Anne Groell, Joe Haldeman, Peter Heck, Vylar Kaftan, John Kessel, Alethea Kontis, Mary Robinette Kowal, Geoffrey A.Landis, Allen Lewis, Tom Lewis, Lee Martindale, James Morrow, Catherine Petrini, Stanley Schmidt, Lawrence Schoen, Lansing Sexton, Eric James Stone, Bud Sparhawk, Allen Steele, Michael Sullivan, Robin Sullivan, Michael Swanwick, Brandie Tarvin, Mary Turzillo, Michael Whelan, Alexander Whitaker, and Connie Willis.

The panel will be on Saturday, May 21, 2011 at 1:30 p.m., with M.K. Hobson , J. Kathleen Cheney, Eric James Stone, and Rachel Swirsky.

So, if you want to come and wave/get books signed/have drinks… 🙂

Brief weekend wrapup, BSFA Award and Hugos



It was a very good Eastercon; and it was also a very frustrating one. Due to several other commitments, my roommate (the awesomely talented Rochita Loenen-Ruiz) and I arrived late on Friday evening, and as a result I ended up missing most of the action until Saturday morning (whereupon I had a brief moment for breakfast with Tricia Sullivan, Paul Cornell and Lauren Beukes, before I was whisked off for my signing, where I spent the rest of the afternoon). I watched the new Doctor Who episode, which was awesome but slightly frustrating–it’s all well and good for those who have BBC at home, but I’m going to have to wait for it to air in France or go to DVD before I can know the ending (interestingly, I prefer Matt Smith’s Doctor to Tennant’s Doctor, though Eccleston remains my favourite of those incarnations I’ve seen).

Then it was time for the BSFA Awards. As you can see, I hadn’t had much time to myself till then, so I wrote a very hasty and illegible speech on the back of a piece of paper while in the queue for Doctor Who, secure in the knowledge it wouldn’t ever be pronounced.

You can see this coming a mile off, don’t you. “The Shipmaker” won Best Short Fiction. Once I got past the OMG OMG moment, I just knew I was going to have to improvise something. I have no idea how it all went, because it’s a bit of a blur, but let me thank once again, everyone who voted in the short fiction category, the tireless people of the BSFA for organising the Awards, Paul Cornell and David Weber for presenting it to me, and Andy Cox, Andy Hedgecock, Roy Gray and the rest of the Interzone team for publishing the story in the first place. (I do have a shiny trophy, but due to various logistics problems it’s, er, temporarily elsewhere. Will take pics and display them when I have them). Major congrats as well to Paul Kincaid, Joey Hi-Fi and Ian McDonald for taking the prize in their categories; and finally, kudos to my fellow nominees, Nina Allan, Peter Watts and Neil Williamson. It was an honour to be with you guys.

Sunday, very fortunately, was quieter, allowing me time to browse in the dealers’ room, hang out with friends in the bar, and steel myself for the evening. Namely, something I had been sitting on for a couple of weeks–the Hugo nomination of “The Jaguar House, in Shadow” for Best Novelette.

The announcement is also a bit of a blur, but fortunately no speeches were involved. Very happy to see a number of friends on the ballot such as Lauren Beukes, Rachel Swirsky, Eric James Stone, Ian McDonald, and Mary Robinette Kowal. And very very happy to see Alastair Reynolds finally up for a Hugo (you’d think he’d have been nominated before, but apparently not). And also very happy to see so many women up for awards, especially in the fiction category. Though we were talking it over with the H yesterday, and we weren’t entirely sure that nominations would transcribe into wins due to the way the ballot was structured (not sure about the others, but I expect Ted Chiang to win the novella, and I also suspect that all the proponents of traditional science-driven SF–of which there are many–will vote for Ian McDonald, giving him a strong edge in terms of votes). I very much hope I’ll be proved wront there.

So, at any rate, the complete list of Hugo nominees is here; lots of good stuff to check out; and thanks to everyone who nominated me, or supported me, or cheered for me when the announcement came out. And if, you know, you happen to want Jaguar Knights to win the shiny rocket trophy, you know what to do 🙂

Other than that, it was a great but exhausting con. I did my reading (the cookies went down a treat at that one–and my deepest thanks to everyone who turned up to show support); got on a couple of last-minute panels on Monday about Race and Gender in SF and Self-Promotion for Writers; met lots of people–old friends, new acquaintances–and generally had tons of fun and many productive discussions. I’m only sorry it was so short, and that there were some people I managed to miss altogether. But hey, here’s to next year.

Eastercon schedule


So, this is what I’ll be getting up to:

Saturday, 12:30-2:00pm, Waterstone’s Birmingham High Street: Angry Robot signing

Saturday, from 4pm, Churchill: Angry Robot signing
Yes, this is the AR afternoon. Featuring Lavie Tidhar, Lauren Beukes, Colin Harvey, John Meaney/Thomas Blackthorne, Dan Abnett, Andy Remic, and Ian Whates (hope I haven’t forgotten anyone…). Come see us!

Sunday, 7:30pm-9:00pm, Gladstone: Author reading with the fabulous Simon Morden.

(full programme grid here, though lacking the names of participants)

I was on a panel, but sadly it looks like I can’t be signing and panelling at the same time…

Also, not making any promises, but there should be some baking happening before Eastercon–think sweet things 🙂

Otherwise, I’ll be in the bar. Not sure yet about my arrival time, but I should be operational Friday late evening (10:00pm-ish), and I’ll be leaving Monday in the afternoon. Looking forward to seeing some of you there!

ETA: adjusted schedule to reflect new signing times (there’s a snafu with the grids, which is that they only work modulo 90 minutes…)

So, eastercon…


In no particular order:

-Cheese is considered a gel or a paste and, as such, is not allowed in a cabin luggage. It would be nice if a. They actually advertised this elsewhere than after your luggage got stuck at security, and b. they didn’t make you wait ten minutes while they search someone else’s luggage to tell you this. It would have spared me some careening through the airport trying to get the luggage checked in, in time to make my flight (for the record: I had to plead a bit with Air France, but I managed to check it in about 3 minutes before check-in closed). If I were feeling optimistic, I’d go for c. they should make it easier to check in your luggage with its “illegal” items (of which they are now so many I feel like giving up), at the very least by making it easy to go back to the check-in counters (I had to basically go out the airport and come back again), or even (God forbid) have a checkin counter at security. But, you know, that would be cheating.

-Jetse de Vries throws a mean launch party (but I already knew that). The Shine launch party was filled with good alcohol, good food (the aforementioned cheese), and plenty of awesome people. Got a chance to chat to some UK-based friends, as well as to Ellen Datlow (who was over for Worldcon), and a number of other contributors to the anthology: Gareth L. Powell, Eva Maria Chapman, and Alastair Reynolds (well, strictly speaking, I caught Alastair in the dealers’ room on Monday morning, but it still counts).

-It was good to see people again (in particular to be rooming with Rochita Loenen-Ruiz, who is in the process of being co-opted into the convention circuit). Also had many great conversations about immigration, identity, and Asian immigration in particular with a number of people throughout the con (somewhat depressing that countries seemed to become more and more closed to foreigners from the “wrong” parts of the world, but overall it gave me a lot of food for thought)

-Went to a few panels, but not many. I survived my own (the one about Writing in a Foreign Language, which was very interesting, as we had a group of people with very different experiences of English), and I think I made it to two others (one about Clarke, and one about whether there was a time limit on SF novels). Spent way too much time schmoozing and drinking and talking, as usual 🙂

-I am not a night person. Was up early most mornings (8:00am-ish), tried to talk past 1:00am in the evening–and ended up going for what I assumed was a short nap Sunday evening at 8:00pm. Yeah, right. Woke up at 11:30pm and wandered down to find the con winding down. Grr.

-The dealer’s room is starting to be dangerous for me–but not for the reasons you’d think. Going to three Eastercons means I’m starting to know a lot of people, and as a result it was hard for me to wander down the aisles quietly (also, I’m a surprisingly chatty person in the company of like-minded people).

-Goodies. What I love about this eastercon team (same one that put together Eastercon 2008, both most impressive cons in terms of organisation) is that they give a mug in the goodies bag, which is awesome. I also got an extra mug courtesy of Carl Rafala of Immersion Press, who had printed out personalised mugs for all the authors in his forthcoming The Immersion Book of Science Fiction. And in the way of books, I got myself a copy of Ian McDonald’s King of Morning, Queen of Day (great urban fantasy), Mary Gentle’s Golden Witchbreed, Eric Brown’s Helix, Lavie Tidhar and Nir Yaniv’s The Tel-Aviv Dossier (courtesy of the Chizine team), and Daniel Fox’s Jade Man’s Skin, the follow up to the great Chinese/Taiwanese-flavoured fantasy Dragon in Chains.

Well, looks like that’s all I have in the way of con reporting. Eastercon is still one of my fave cons: it’s big but not too big, it’s handy to get to (no transatlantic flights), it’s always very nicely run, and lots of awesome people are there.
So, until Birmingham…

Utopiales con report


My con report for Utopiales is up on the World SF news blog (I was not going to produce one, but Lavie nagged me). You can read it here.
Lots of text, but sadly no illustrations–given that the BF and I had managed to forget the camera in the somewhat precipitous departure from Paris. Next time, we’ll do better…

Darkness notice


So, the blog is going dark this weekend, as the BF and I are going to Nantes for the Utopiales. First time ever, and everything was booked on a slightly rushed plan (ie, 15 days before the actual con), so we’ll see how it goes. I’ll have wifi at the hotel, but I don’t think we’ll actually be much at the hotel (I have a professional entry which lets me come in and out as I want, but the BF has a standard one, and he can only enter once. Weird con, if you ask me, but then again my only experience so far has been anglophone cons).

I’m slightly miffed, because a number of people I know are at WFC, including Ken Scholes, the whole Zeno Agency, WIBites Dario Ciriello, Juliette Wade and Janice Hardy (and lots more whom I’d really have liked to see). But one transatlantic con for two people a year is quite enough for the budget, sadly.

Fun experiences of the day: I ordered a book on a German bookstore’s website (volume 5 of the Utena manga, in case you’re curious–I’m not clear why there are so many copies of vol 1-4 around, and vol 5 just seems to have vanished from about every single English website I tried). Since I don’t speak much German, it was, er, interesting… Thank God I did have a few words in my brain, because going only by Google translator would not have worked. Now let’s see if it arrives. The last thing I ordered from Spain never did make it, though I did get refunded.

2,000 words on Harbinger today. Things are heating up (quite literally, in this case).



I’ll be attending my first ever Utopiales in Nantes: the BF and I need a break (he defends his thesis tomorrow, and we both could use a bit of rest after the wringing the PhD has put us through). No programming, though: just enjoying the con, and seeing some friends.

(I’m attempting to get a professional pass by virtue of being an author; we’ll see how it goes 🙂 )