Baycon 2014 Panelist

SpaceHonor is one of those themes that shows up in my writing a lot, raised as I was on Arthurian tales, while the sea has always been a draw ever since I read Carry On, Mr. Bowditch, a young adult biography. You might ask what this has to do with Baycon, the science fiction convention held annually in Santa Clara, California, on May 23-26, but it all ties into the guest of honor, David Weber, whose Honor Harrington series was first described to me as Hornblower in space. I was dubious at first, but when I started reading them, I understood the connection as she struggled with the crew and interactions between ships and powers much like how we watch Horatio Hornblower mature from a young man in the Royal Navy.

All this is to say I’m looking forward to seeing what type of Weber-based programming is tucked into Baycon this year, and I’m happy to announce I’m officially a Baycon panelist again this year. I had my invite some time back, but it feels more real now having filled out the panelist survey where I have to state my level of interest in the proposed panels this year. From the look of it, I get the feeling I’ll be busy running from the things I’m assigned to and the things I don’t want to miss like…well…every year, until I drop into a pile of goo for the drive home.

For those of you who don’t know about Baycon, the website is here. It’s a mix of the main genre themes, including writing, reading, costuming, art, music, television, and gaming to name a few. There is usually a mix of people crossing many backgrounds in education, culture, and thought. I’ve had some wonderful conversations after panels or just randomly in the hallway where someone mentions something and others collect to join in.

The panels focus on interest areas like costuming or writing, or topic areas like space and cultures, or activities whether closed workshops or open do-it-yourself projects. They even have a DIY room set aside solely for the last purpose. The evenings are full of concerts, movies, filking, dancing (Regency era anyone?), parties, and gaming (along with other things I’m sure, but these are the ones I’ve participated in over the years). Plus, when my brain is fried, there’s always a puzzle or two in progress in the gaming room. You can find me there especially late in the evening often enough.

If you have the chance, you can come for only a day or stay for the whole weekend. This year will have a strong focus on science fiction in general and David Weber (as guest of honor) in specific, but a glance at the panelist questionnaire also shows a world building focus on alternate history and culture, a particular interest of mine, as well as a ton of other areas.

I won’t know which panels I’ve been assigned to until the beginning of May, and my actual schedule a little later than that, but there’s no question that I’ll be there. I’m hoping to get a reading slot, but even if I do not, I’ll be bringing a sample of my books in trade paper available for sale at a discounted conference rate, so if you’re interested, just catch me. I’ll be happy to sign them as well.

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