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24 August 2014 @ 08:39 am

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

As I was preparing to add my photos from Loncon3 to my Flickr albums, I realized I still hadn’t uploaded last month’s Readercon pics. And so …


… if you’d like to see me with David Kyle, who attended the first science fiction convention in 1936, as well as 42 other photos, you can check them out here.

And just in case you’re worried—no, you won’t be forced to look at food pics!

28 July 2014 @ 05:19 pm

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

It’s been two weeks and a day since my dinner at Journeyman during Readercon, a meal which I should have shared with you sooner. Ah, Life … it does get in the way.

But since it would be unfair to the wonderful meal not to give you a few details even after this passage of time, read on.

After last year’s meal at Journeyman, I was eager to return.


And so, on Saturday night, I skipped out on the con, along with Cecilia Tan (above), David Shaw, Diane Martin, and others, for a meal that began at 8:00 p.m. and went on way past midnight. (And if I’d gotten to this sooner, I could have told you exactly when we left.)Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

23 July 2014 @ 11:06 am

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

I know, I know. Readercon’s more than a week behind me in the rear-view mirror, and I’m only just now getting around to posting my final video from the event. It violates Edelman’s Rule of Convention Reporting, which requires that all write-ups, photos, and videos be shared as contemporaneously as possible, to increase the schadenfreude of those who couldn’t make it.

But you’ll forgive me, won’t you? I’m hopeful this last bit of video will allow you to do so.

I wasn’t sure I’d be able to capture this 10:00 a.m. panel, since Saturday night’s dinner (which I promise I’ll tell you about next) didn’t have me getting to sleep until around 2:30 a.m. But I forced myself awake because, hey, Readercon only comes around once a year, and it would be shame to surrender a panel to fatigue. So here’s “Books That Deserve to Remain Unspoiled,” featuring Jonathan Crowe, Gavin Grant, Gayle Surrette, Kate Nepveu, and Graham Sleight. Their mandate was—

In a 2013 review of Joyce Carol Oates’s The Accursed, Stephen King stated, “While I consider the Internet-fueled concern with ‘spoilers’ rather infantile, the true secrets of well-made fiction deserve to be kept.” How does spoiler-acquired knowledge change our reading of fiction? Are some books more “deserving” of going unspoiled than others? If so, what criteria do we apply to determine those works?

And here’s the panel itself!

After an hour of schmoozing and signing more books (for the first time ever, an equal number of copies of my zombie and science fiction collections were sold this weekend; zombie usually win), I attended David Shaw and B. Diane Martin’s presentation on the science of ice cream, which included—samples!Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

12 July 2014 @ 09:21 am

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

First thing I did yesterday was to post Thursday’s Readercon videos, because I’d hoped to encourage you to get here today, but don’t worry—I then got out of my hotel room and quickly dove into the thick of things.

First up was the morning panel “Empathy, Identification, and Stories,” which featured Matthew Kressel, L. Timmel Duchamp (moderator), Julia Rios, Andrea Hairston, and Walt Williams.

Here’s what they set out to discuss.

At a panel at Arisia 2013, Andrea Hairston said, “I can only tell you a story if you’re a human who can hear a story and imagine what it’s like to be someone who isn’t you.” Tannanarive Due added that access to stories matters: some children, for instance, can easily find books about characters like themselves, while others have to read books from outside a position of identification. Culture creates structures of identification and empathy; or, to put it another way, ways of feeling from within and ways of feeling from without. How do stories create structures of feeling, and how can writers and readers both benefit from awareness of these structures?

And for those who couldn’t make it to Readercon, here’s the panel itself.Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

11 July 2014 @ 08:38 am

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

Another July, another Readercon!

Readercon is my favorite convention. I’ve been to every one since 1987. Well, save one, which I missed due to a conflict with San Diego Comic-Con, though some of you might remember than in order to prevent despair, I sent a stand-in. A stand-up stand-in. This year, thankfully, I was able to make it in the flesh.

As has been usual for the past decade, rather than fly to Boston and bus it to Burlington, I flew to Providence, where I spent the afternoon with Paul Di Filippo and Deb Newton, who drove me to the con. But the con really began at Dulles Airport, because Michael Dirda was on the same flight, and we were able to discuss Forever Amber, Henry Huggins, and Rick Brant’s Electronic Adventures without the need of a moderator or microphone.

In Providence, he and I and Paul and Deb were joined by John Clute and Liz Hand (seen with me below), also on the way to Readercon. So there was much fun (and lobster rolls!) before the con proper even began.


Once we arrived at the con, we took part in a massive group dinner which also included Peter Straub, Gary Wolfe, Kit Reed, plus the organizers of the meal, David Shaw and Diane Martin. And then at 8:00 p.m., the programming began …Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )


Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

It seems as if I’ve barely gotten back into the rhythm of my regular life after the one-two punch of the World Horror Convention and the Nebula Awards on consecutive weekends. But since it’s summer, there are two more cons around the corner to discombobulate and energize me—Readercon in Burlington, Massachusetts and Loncon 3, the 72nd World Science Fiction Convention, in London.

The con committees have released their tentative schedules to the program participants, which obviously will be subject to change as the final tweaks are made. But just to tease you, here—as of today—is where you’ll be able to find me during these two events. (I’m leaving out my co-panelists for now, since that’s also subject to change.)

First up—Readercon.

The Shiny, Candy-like Zombie: Commoditizing the Undead
Friday, July 12, 3:00 p.m.
On Twitter, M. John Harrison wrote about the appeal of zombies: “You can hate them without feeling wrong. You can kill them like eating sweets. Then you’re hungry again & you can kill more. They’re fully dehumanised. There’s no off-season, no moral limitation. They’re the *enemy*. What’s not to love? They’re what we really want.” So do we like zombies because they’re the consumer-friendly, ambiguity-free face of implacable evil? Are they, in fact, the most perfectly commoditised monsters?

Sunday, July 14, 9:00 a.m.
I’ll read my new story, “And, Behold, It Was Very Good”

Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

02 December 2013 @ 08:19 pm

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

When Carol Pinchefsky and Keith DeCandido recently appeared on Jim Freund’s WBAI radio show Hour of the Wolf, the topic at hand was Doctor Who. However, I—along with my durian—also became a topic for discussion.

The durian discussed—along with a jackfruit—made an appearance at Readercon in 2011. And for those who don’t know what either of those fabled fruits look like, behold! Here are the very fruits which I stored in my hotel room while waiting for the Friday night “Meet the Prose” party to begin.


If you’ve no experience with either durian or jackfruit and are wondering about their size, here for contrast is a photo of me with one of the durian I brought to a Balticon several years ago.Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )


Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

During Readercon a few weeks back, I was interviewed by Gil Roth for his Virtual Memories Show podcast. Gil brought the episode live last week, but it wasn’t until today that I found the time to give it a listen, make sure the resulting interview didn’t cause me to wince, and share it with you.

And so here I am below, starting at 51:20, after the far more erudite John Crowley.

The one thing I learned from listening to my blather is that I sure do say the phrase “and so forth” a lot.

If you decide to listen, I hope your takeaway will be something more than that.

28 July 2013 @ 10:11 pm

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

I’ve attended every Readercon since it began in 1987 (well, except for the one I was regrettably forced to miss, about which the less said the better), and have tended not to wander out on my usual foodie jaunts during that con. That’s because Readercon’s programming has always been so dense and intense that I’ve never been able to make time for much more than con suite food (or durian and jackfruit) between rushing from panel to reading to kaffeeklatsch to panel.

But David Shaw was tired of that excuse, seeing it as an insult to the culinary arts of his beloved city, and insisted we finally pay a visit to his favorite local restaurant, Journeyman. So we snuck away the Saturday night of the convention (along with Diane Martin, Cecilia Tan, and Corwin) to Union Square in Somerville, where I had what ended up being one of the best meals of my life.

Before starting our seven-course meal, I began with a delicious melon thyme mocktail …


… which was a wonderful preview for the six non-alcoholic beverage pairings which would accompany my meal. As impressed as I was by the food, I was even more impressed by the pairings. It’s no exaggeration to say that when considered in their totality, Journeyman’s non-alcoholic beverage pairings exceeded in imagination and execution those I’ve experienced at any other restaurant.

As we sipped those initial beverages, we were given a choice—did we want to look at the descriptions of the tasting menus, or did we want what arrived to be a surprise?Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )


Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

At noon on Sunday, July 14, 2013, Elizabeth Bear, John Benson, Andrea Hairston, Elizabeth Hand, Robert Killheffer and Scott Lynch came together at Readercon for the panel, “Pining for the Fnords: The New Nostalgia.”

What does that mean exactly? According to the program guide:

Well-received novels like John Scalzi’s Redshirts, Jo Walton’s Among Others, and Ernest Cline’s Ready Player One pointedly allude to the SF of decades past. In a controversial review in the Los Angeles Review of Science Fiction, Paul Kincaid suggested that contemporary SF is suffering from a feeling of exhaustion; “the genre is now afraid to engage with what once made it novel, instead turning back to what was there before” or reverting “to older, more familiar futures.” Others view this type of SF as celebrating its heritage. What’s driving this backward-looking urge, and to what extent is it positive or problematic?

If you’re wondering why it’s taken this long for me to share this video, blame the bandwidth of my home Internet. Most people complain about the Internet speed they get at hotels, but not me—it’s rare that I’ll be at a hotel which has slower speeds than I experience at home. And so this video, which would have taken around two hours to upload at the Readercon hotel, would supposedly take 16 at home, and I couldn’t spare the bandwidth. So I had to wait until the following weekend, when I was once more at a hotel for a convention, to upload.

And now, after an explanation you probably neither wanted nor needed … enjoy!


Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

The star of my Saturday at Readercon was Maureen McHugh. (Actually, the true star of Saturday may have been my amazing dinner with friends at Journeyman, which lasted around four hours and 45 minutes, but let’s leave that for another day.) Maureen, one of the Readercon Guests of Honor, gave a reading at 10:00 a.m., and then was interviewed by Kelly Link at 5:00 p.m.

First up, here’s Maureen reading a story from her collection After the Apocalypse.

But before we get into that GoH interview, here’s a 1:00 p.m. reading by F. Brett Cox.Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )


Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

My Friday at Readercon was a whirlwind, filled with so many panels and conversations that I didn’t have time to grab lunch, surviving until dinner on a handful of nuts and dried fruit grabbed in the con suite. I did a reading, a kaffeeklatch, and a panel on Life After Clarion, sat in the audience for a couple of panels, and stayed up late with David Shaw strumming our ukuleles.


I’m not sure which song we were struggling through in the above photo. Were we mangling Amanda Palmer’s “Ukulele Anthem”? Or butchering Randy Newman’s “Political Science 101″? I can’t be sure. I only know that you’re all lucky Diane Martin only snapped a still picture, and didn’t bother capturing any video. Because if she had, no one would ever want to attend another Readercon!

But to show you why you should get to one, here’s more video, on top of Thursday’s, which will show what fun was had.Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )


Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

It was great to return to Readercon after missing 2012′s edition, because I became quite jealous of flat me, who due to an unfortunately coincidence, got to have all the fun last year.

I’m going to keep this short, because I want to throw myself quickly into Friday’s maelstrom.

For those friends who couldn’t make it this year, and wanted to see what it meant that there’d be no lobby during the con because of Marriott’s grand renovation plans, here’s a view toward the entrance from the hallway where registration to the con takes place. That’s the revolving door to the left, and to the right, that wall’s blocking off where the lobby usually is.


I hope that by the time they’re done, they won’t be too high class for the likes of us.

And here are two panels from last night, so those of you who couldn’t make it this year—or who did make it but were in one of the other rooms enjoying some other panel or reading—won’t miss out.Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )


Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

Two weeks from tomorrow, I’ll be heading to Burlington, Massachusetts for Readercon—the real me, not the flat life-sized cardboard me I sent in my stead last year after I was forced to miss my first Readercon ever due to a conflict with the San Diego Comic-Con.

If you’ll be there, too, here’s where you’ll be able to find me … when I’m not in the bar or sitting in the audience during other readings and panels, or, who knows, eating a durian in the parking lot while strumming a ukulele.

Friday July 12

12:30 PM VT
I’ll be reading “Things That Never Happened,” forthcoming in PostScripts.

3:00 PM CL
with Michael Blumlein

Life After Clarion
8:00 PM RI
The Clarion SF Workshop is one of the best in the world for budding science fiction, fantasy, and horror writers. Many of today’s award-winning authors are Clarion graduates. For six weeks, Clarion students have the luxury of learning from top-notch authors and editors while living the life of a full-time writer. But once Clarion ends, what do you do next? How do you take what you learn at Clarion and apply it to your writing life and your real life? And how do you adjust from having the support of other writers to possibly having very little or none at all? Professional writers who graduated from Clarion in the ’80s, ’90s, and ’00s share their life-after-Clarion experiences.
with Ron Drummond, E.C. Myers, Resa Nelson (leader), Ken Schneyer

Saturday July 13

Which Ideas Are Worth Keeping?
2:00 PM G
Many writers have file folders of unfinished stories or novels that never jelled or never seemed quite publishable. How do you decide which ideas to reject, which to pitch, and which simply to follow through on based on your own convictions?
with Daryl Gregory, Margo Lanagan, Yoon Ha Lee and Allen Steele

Hope to see you there!

17 October 2012 @ 11:09 pm

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

I just ran across a yellowing four-page flyer, “A Field Guide to the Readercon 2 Program Participants,” and it gives an interesting snapshot of who we were back in 1988. Both in that some of the attendees are sadly no longer with us—such as Algis Budrys, Stan Leventhal and John Morressy—but also for the ways in which those of us still around have progressed—such as Patrick Nielsen Hayden and Teresa Nielsen Hayden, who back then had just been named (respectively) Tor Books’ administrative and managing editors.

Wonder how that worked out for them?

Take a look below to see what (almost) a quarter of a century has done to us.

Let’s hope that those of us still around have every day in every way continued getting better and better. We can dream, can’t we?

10 August 2012 @ 08:41 am

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

I know that more photos from my strange Readercon journey were taken than I’ve seen and shared with you here and here, because there are a few people who told me they posed with me last month and had others take their (as yet unseen by me) pictures. But since those are not turning up in my inbox, it appears the flood is over, so I’ll share this one last pic I received.

David Lubkin and Filthy Pierre

If you’re in possession of any additional images, and you’ve yet to send me a copy, you know what to do.

Meanwhile, I’m sure you’ve heard the less frivolous Readercon news. I’m sad the events that led to such a statement being necessary occurred, but glad for the statement itself at the same time, because I do want to return to future Readercons for photos which will be of a more three-dimensional me.

19 July 2012 @ 11:29 pm

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

I arrived home safely from Readercon this afternoon. Or perhaps I should say … I was delivered home safely.

If that distinction (and the photo above) confuses you, this should clear things up. And this will reveal the story so far.

But here are some further photos to let you see how much fun I had at Readercon.Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

16 July 2012 @ 09:43 pm

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

ComicCon and Readercon are now over, and surprisingly, I still managed to have fun at the latter even with the sad conflict that kept me away from it while working the former.

How is that possible? I had a solution.

Check out the fun I had, as dear friends and colleagues did their best to help me forget I was missing my first Readercon ever.

Rose Fox

Thank you, committee, for providing me with a name badge!Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )


Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

Those of you who know that I’ve attended every Readercon since the first in 1987—I believe I’m the only person to have done that save for a few of the committee members—will understand the sadness I felt when I learned that in 2012, it would conflict with the San Diego Comic-Con, which I cover each year on behalf of Blastr.

A Readercon without Scott Edelman? Inconceivable! (Well, to me, at least.) Something had to be done … but what?


One of those two men above is now in San Diego, filing copy, while the other is whooping it up in Burlington. I leave it to you to decide which one of us is where.

If you run across me at Readercon, you’ll see I’ve asked attendees to snap photos with me and either email them or tweet using the hashtag #ReaderconScott.

And what do you know, the first sighting of Edelman in the wild has already occurred …Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )


I’ve been attending Readercon since it began in 1987. I haven’t missed one yet. It’s my favorite convention weekend of the year, the place where I hang with my tribe and recharge my creative batteries.

I’ve been attending the San Diego Comic-Con since 2007. It’s the most important pop culture gathering of the year, and since I’m the editor of Blastr, there’s no way I can miss it. It’s a must-see event.

During most Julys, Readercon has been two weeks prior to Comic-Con. Last month, it was one week before Comic-Con. In 2012 … well … see for yourself, via screen grabs from the two cons’ sites.

To say that I’m heartbroken is an understatement. But I don’t see any way around it. I’ve got to cover Comic-Con. My unbroken string of Readercons … has come to an end.

If I’m wearing black the next time you see me, it won’t be because I’m channeling Neil Gaiman. It’ll be because I’m in mourning.

Originally published at Scott Edelman. You can comment here or there.