WorldCon 2021 Schedule

WorldCon is normally held in August, but this year is being held in December, because there were various catastrophes (aside from the Big Obvious Ongoing Catastrophe, the hotel they were planning to hold the con in closed down) and the convention organizers rescheduled it for December. It’s being held both virtually and in-person. I’m vaxxed, boosted, and going in person.

I am a finalist for two Hugo Awards this year: “Monster” is a finalist for Best Novelette, and “Little Free Library” is a finalist for Best Short Story. Both stories are up against an amazing set of fellow finalists; it’s an honor to be listed among them.

I’m getting in Wednesday evening, flying home Monday. Here’s my schedule:

Thursday

10 am: Post-Pandemic Aesthetics. Virtual Panel.
“The 1918 flu pandemic had huge impacts on culture over the subsequent decades, including significant changes to architecture and personal fashion. What kinds of long-term changes to our public aesthetic will we see in reaction to COVID-19? Will restaurants and other public spaces need to change their room layouts and building designs? Will branded, designer facemasks become de rigueur symbols of conspicuous consumption?” I am moderating. Other panelists: Ana Rüsche, Charlie Stross, Leonardo Espinoza Benavides, sandy manning.

11:30 am: Kaffeeklatsch – Suite 325 Main Room.

1 pm to 1:50pm: Signing at the SFWA table in the Dealer’s Room.

2:30 pm: The Fallout of Being the Chosen One. Forum Room.
“Being a Chosen One isn’t always happily-ever-after. The season-by-season model of television, and the multi volume novel,  allows viewers to explore the arc of the chosen one-type hero after the initial hero’s journey is complete. What are some of the emotional impacts and plot implications of the Chosen One’s story? What kind of generational trauma can being, or being near, the Chosen One inflict?” Ellen Kushner, Naomi Kritzer, Patricia A. Jackson, Sarah Guan, Hildy Silverman (Moderator)

5 p.m.: Hugo Nominee reception, Ambassador Ballroom.
This is a big public reception for people to meet the nominees from 2021 and the winners (and maybe also nominees?) from 2020 (which also includes me: I won the Lodestar Award for Catfishing on Catnet). How long I stay is going to depend heavily on whether I was able to find food between 12:30 and 1, and/or between 1:50 and 2:30, or if I’m running on pop and granola bars.

10 pm: Social Media: Making Enemies & Alienating People. Virtual.
“Social media can be an excellent place to find online community, especially during a pandemic, but it can also be a fraught world of vicious gossip, lip service activism, and whatever the Algorithm is. The panel will explore ways of using different forms of social media to connect with like-minded people, while providing tips to avoid falling prey to such platform’s worst aspects.” Elizabeth Hirst, John Wiswell, K.G. Anderson, Naomi Kritzer, Travis Tippens (Moderator)

(Yes, my Thursday is ridiculous. It was already ridiculous and then I added the signing at the SFWA table because the other available slots were problematic in other ways and I decided that I’d just come prepared to live on snacks that day if I have to. The 10 p.m. panel on social media dumpster fires should leave me thoroughly alert to go find people in the bar!)

Friday

10 am: Legal and Actuarial Supernatural Hypotheticals. Forum Room.
“What does a lifetime annuity mean to the undead? Are werewolves responsible for their actions during the full moon if they contracted lycanthropy by accident? Do mermaids have standing to bring citizen suits under the Clean Water Act? Do vampire thralls run afoul of anti-slavery laws? Not actual legal advice. Results may vary. Please contact your local coven before attempting to bargain with the fae.” I am moderating. Also on the panel: Alex Shvartsman, Andrija “Andy” Popovic, Pat Bahn, Tenaya Anue.

Saturday

2:30 p.m.: 2020 ruined my novel! Forum Room.
“2020 was a giant curveball for the entire world. Everyone was affected in one way or another. What about authors? Our panelists will discuss what changes they had to make to their 2020 work-in-progress to accommodate all the weird things that were happening in the real world.” Alyc Helms, Lindsay Ellis, Lisa Nohealani Morton, Naomi Kritzer, Sue, Victor Manibo, Wesley Chu (Moderator)

8 p.m.: Hugo Award Ceremony.
Definitely planning to go to this.

Sunday

I have nothing currently scheduled for Sunday other than being able to sleep in.

Anyway — for anyone coming, please say hi! Also please don’t be worried if I have to squint at your nametag to know who you are — I have always been bad at facial recognition, add masks and it’s just hopeless (but I’m strongly in favor of masks. Just, also nametags.) I am looking forward to the mix of in-person and virtual programming. If you want something signed and can’t make it to my signing or Kaffeeklatsch, feel free to just waylay me after a panel.

I went to Convergence this summer and in some ways, it was a very different con. It was smaller; a lot of stuff had been scaled back or cancelled either because they lacked volunteers to run it or because they couldn’t come up with a good way to make it safe. But it was still so great to see people again. I have missed conventions so much and I’m really grateful that WorldCon is being held.

Trip Report II: Dublin 2019, An Irish WorldCon

I tend to really resist writing convention reports because if I try to name-check everyone I met, I will inevitably forget someone and then they might swear enmity against me for life and that would make me sad. So I’m just going to say up front that I’m not going to try to name everyone I met.

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Trip Report, Part 1: Cork & Killarney

 

I was up for a Hugo Award this year, which provided us with a stupendous excuse to take a family vacation in Ireland and Iceland. (Icelandair is both a budget airline and clearly an arm of the Icelandic Bureau of Tourism since they let you arrange a multi-day stopover in Iceland at no extra cost, and inundate you with on-board advertisements designed to sell you on the idea. HORSES! NORTHERN LIGHTS! SCENERY!)

We went over about a week before the convention started. Ed and I visited Ireland 20 years ago — before we had kids — and Dublin was our least favorite bit, so we wanted to get out of it as quickly as possible. We took a train to Cork, where we discovered that the guest house I’d booked thinking it was walking distance from the train station was not around the corner from the train station but straight up a cliff. (There were stairs! I do not recommend hauling a bunch of suitcases up four flights of stairs, in the rain, while massively jet-lagged and operating on almost no sleep. Just, I mean, if you were considering it.)

The rest of the trip went quite a bit better.

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WorldCon 2019 Schedule

Next month I will be at Dublin 2019: an Irish WorldCon. If we know each other (either in person or online) and you’ll be in Dublin and you’d like to try to meet up, please let me know!

Here’s my official schedule:

Reading: Naomi Kritzer
16 Aug 2019, Friday 20:00 – 20:20, Liffey Room-3 (Readings) (CCD)

Kaffeeklatsch: Naomi Kritzer
Format: Kaffeeklatsch
17 Aug 2019, Saturday 12:00 – 12:50, Level 3 Foyer (KK/LB) (CCD)

The author as a fellow traveler on the hero’s journey

Format: Panel
18 Aug 2019, Sunday 10:30 – 11:20, Odeon 4 (Point Square Dublin)

Many authors, unsurprisingly, form a strong emotional bond with their characters, experiencing the joys and frustrations of the story along with them. How does this affect the writing process itself? What about the impact on the writer’s critical engagement with their own work? How much does an author’s engagement depend on their personality, their approach, or the type of story being written?

Dr Kristina Perez (M), Michael Swanwick, Karen Simpson Nikakis, Naomi Kritzer, Daryl Gregory

 

Gods, religion and atheism in the genre
Format: Panel
18 Aug 2019, Sunday 13:00 – 13:50, Wicklow Hall 2B (CCD)

Gods and religion are often an integral element of SFF worlds; they offer ways to build conflict and to explore alternative philosophical concepts. How have authors tackled the creation and inclusion of religion in their worldbuilding? Is it possible for atheism to exist in worlds where gods literally walk among the people?

Derwin Mak, Dominic Riemenschneider MA, Ehud Maimon, Naomi Kritzer (M), Meg MacDonald