Thursday, July 24, 2014

My Worldcon Schedule

The Worldcon program was published today, and just from a quick glance I can already tell that I am going to be a) worn off my feet running from panel to panel, and b) overcome by agonizing choices between conflicting but equally awesome events.  I'm truly looking forward to this convention.

My own excellent slate of panels is below.  In addition to these, I will be on hand at the Strange Horizons brunch, on Saturday from 10AM to 12AM, at party tent A.
  • A Reader's Life During Peak Short Fiction

    Friday 12:00 - 13:30, Capital Suite 10 (ExCeL)

    There are now more speculative short stories published than any one person can hope to read -- or even find. So how do fans of the short-form navigate this landscape? With so much ground to cover, how does an individual reader find stories they like -- are we more author-driven in our reading habits? Conversely, how and why do particular stories "break out" and become more widely known? To what extent is the greater volume of material enabling -- and recognising -- a greater diversity of authors and topics? And what is the place of short fiction in today's field -- testing ground for ideas, the heart of the discussion, or something else?

    Jetse de Vries (M), Elizabeth Bear , Abigail Nussbaum , Jonathan Strahan , Alvaro Zinos-Amaro

  • Saturday Morning Cartoons: The Next Generation

    Friday 16:30 - 18:00, Capital Suite 2 (ExCeL)

    Alongside the much-discussed golden age of animated cinema, we're living in a golden age of animated TV. Shows such as Gravity Falls, Venture Brothers, My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, Adventure Time, and Avatar: The Last Airbender can be as clever, funny, politically challenging and emotionally sophisticated as any live-action show. This panel will discuss when and why the best of these shows work so well -- as well as the constraints they still face, and whether some of them fall short of their ideals.

    Amal El-Mohtar , Abigail Nussbaum , Abigail Sutherland , Andrew Ferguson

  • The Review is Political

    Saturday 12:00 - 13:30, Capital Suite 2 (ExCeL)

    Every review is a political act because every review makes choices: about which aspects of a work to focus on, what context to provide, which yardsticks to use, and more. And while no choices are neutral, some can be the default -- a focus on plot and character, for instance, and less discussion of style and politics. What other defaults can we identify in SF and fantasy reviewing? How are reviews that depart from those defaults challenged? Are any defaults changing -- and if so, how can we help that process along?

    Kevin McVeigh (M) , Abigail Nussbaum , Dr. Tansy Rayner Roberts , Elías Combarro

  • 2014 Hugos: Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form

    Saturday 13:30 - 15:00, Capital Suite 16 (ExCeL)

    Our panel will discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the nominees, try to second-guess the voters, and tell you what else should have been on the ballot.

    Carrie Vaughn (M) , Tanya Brown , Kim Newman, Abigail Nussbaum , Mary Turzillo

  • The Gendered AI

    Sunday 13:30 - 15:00, Capital Suite 2 (ExCeL)

    Strictly speaking, there's no reason an artificial intelligence should express gender in human terms (or at all). Yet in much recent film and TV -- such as WALL-E, Her, Person of Interest, The Sarah Connor Chronicles, and Caprica -- gender and/or sexuality has been integral to the vision of AI. How have such portrayals affected what stories are told? What are their strengths and weaknesses? What would it mean to imagine a genderless AI -- or a queer AI?

    Charlie Jane Anders (M), Nic Clarke, Michael Morelli, Abigail Nussbaum, Jed Hartman

  • The World at Worldcon: Israeli SF/F

    Monday 13:30 - 15:00, Capital Suite 13 (ExCeL)

    In her essay, "The Man From the Yellow Star", Elana Gomel asserts that, as a general rule, "Israelis do not read science fiction and fantasy." In a 2013 interview published at Strange Horizons, Lavie Tidhar and Shimon Adaf addressed the same issue, identifying a "bias towards naturalism" in the way Israeli fiction is discussed. But things may be changing. Who can we say is writing Israeli SF/F? How are the market and the fan community developing? And who should Anglophones be hoping to get the chance to read?

    Abigail Nussbaum (M), Galia Bahat, Lili Daie, Noa Menhaim, Einat Citron, Liat Shahar-Kashtan


Lady said...

Is there any chance you'll publish a resource list/summary of what comes out of the first panel listed? I know Renay would like it - we're always so overwhelmed by how many stories are out there and how to find the ones we might like best.

salty-horse said...

The new TV show Annedroids (produced by Amazon) features a genderless android, while tackling other gender issues:

zahrawithaz said...

I'd love to hear what comes out of the last panel (the Israeli one)--whether the Israeli bias toward naturalism is grounded in the same causes that operate in Anglophone spaces, or has distinct characteristics, and what authors might be recommended.

gareth-wilson said...

What gender is the AI in Person of Interest? I've haven't watched much of it, but it seems genderless in what I've seen.

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