Tag Archive for 'reading'

see me at philcon!

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I look like this.

Despite having lived in Philadelphia for nearly three years, next week I will be attending my first Philcon — the first and longest running SFF convention in the world — at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Cherry Hill, N.J., Friday, Nov. 8 – Sunday, Nov. 10. Their full schedule is here, but you can find me at the panels listed below, and I hope you’ll come and say hi. This is likely to be my last local event until at least next year.

Before I share my schedule: I want everyone to enjoy the convention without detracting from anyone else’s fun and comfort, so please read Philcon’s Harassment Policy, such as it is.

Friday, Nov. 8

7:00 PM in Plaza II (Two) (1 hour)
DYSTOPIA IN YOUNG ADULT FICTION
[Panelists: Rebecca Robare (mod), Gil Cnaan, E.C. Myers, Christine Norris, Aurora Celeste]

Saturday, Nov. 9

3:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Three (1 hour)
IS STAR TREK BOLDLY GOING WHERE WE WANT IT TO?
[Panelists: Keith R.A. DeCandido (mod), Jay Smith, Theodore Krulik, E.C. Myers, Christopher Stout]

4:00 PM in Executive Suite 623 (1 hour)
READING: E.C. MYERS
I may read my new short story, “Kiss and Kiss and Kiss and Tell”, which I finished writing on Friday. So if you show up, you’ll be the first people anywhere to hear it! It hasn’t been published yet, and it has the standard author disclaimer that it still may be a little rough :)

5:00 PM in Plaza III (Three) (1 hour)
WRITING SCIENCE FICTION FOR YOUNG ADULTS
[Panelists: Ty Drago (mod), Michael J. Friedman, Bill Spangler, E.C. Myers, Thomas Willeford]

Sunday, Nov. 10

2:00 PM in Autograph Table (1 hour)
AUTOGRAPH: ANNA KASHINA, E.C.MYERS
[Panelists: Anna Kashina (mod), E.C. Myers]

The rest of the time I may be hanging out in the bar, or writing on my netbook in a corner somewhere. Deadlines wait for no con.

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busiest readercon ever!

Readercon is one of my favorite SFF conventions, so I’m excited to be participating in programming this year. My schedule is busy for my first time as a guest, and I’m especially looking forward to the many interesting YA panels on the program.

If you’re attending Readercon in Burlington, MA this month, I’ll be there from Thursday, July 11 – Sunday, July 14. My schedule is below: You can find me on panels, get books signed during my autographing session (or indeed, if you see me anywhere else and I’m not in a hurry or otherwise occupied), meet me for coffee (or kaffee?), or come to one of my readings.

The program guide says I’m reading from my current YA novel in progress (a standalone book unrelated to Fair Coin and Quantum Coin), but I may read from a new YA short story instead (or do one at my solo reading and the other at my group reading with Altered Fluid). We’ll see. I also assume my books will be on sale somewhere in the dealer room, but if not, I may have a very small supply with me.

I hope to see you there!

Friday, July 12

8:00 PM    RI    Life After Clarion. Ron Drummond, Scott Edelman, E.C. Myers, Resa Nelson (leader), Ken Schneyer.
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. Proposed by Resa Nelson.

Saturday, July 13

9:00 AM    CL    Kaffeeklatsch. E.C. Myers, Rick Wilber. (Sign up in advance for kaffeeklatsches at the Information Desk, beginning at 10 a.m. on Friday.)

10:00 AM    F    To YA or Not to YA. Jordan Hamessley, E.C. Myers, Phoebe North, Charles Oberndorf, Veronica Schanoes (leader), Shveta Thakrar.
There are plenty of adult books with teen heroes, like Jeffrey Eugenides’s Middlesex and Lev Grossman’s The Magicians. Some books that were not aimed at teens when they came out are mostly read by them today, like Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game. Some books are marketed as YA in one country and adult in another. So what makes a book “a YA book”? Do we just know it when we see it, or is there a way to pin this down beyond listening to marketing campaigns?

2:00 PM    NH    Altered Fluid Group Reading. Paul Berger, Rajan Khanna, Sam J. Miller, E.C. Myers, Devin Poore, Mercurio D. Rivera.
Members of the Manhattan-based Altered Fluid writers group will read excerpts from their forthcoming works.
3:00 PM    VT    Reading: E.C. Myers. E.C. Myers.
E.C. Myers reads an excerpt from a YA novel in progress.
10:30 PM    F/G    Meet the Pro(se) Party

Sunday, July 14

11:00 AM    E    Autographs. Andrea Hairston, E.C. Myers.
12:00 PM    G    Writing for Younger Readers. Lisa Janice (LJ) Cohen, Jordan Hamessley, Alaya Dawn Johnson, E.C. Myers (leader), Phoebe North, Shveta Thakrar.
How do middle grade (MG) and young adult (YA) authors and editors write for children and teen readers? How do they make science fiction more accessible for kids, build complex fantasy worlds, and develop authentic characters with diverse backgrounds? This panel is ideal for anyone writing MG or YA or interested in finding books with plots as rich and complex as any novel targeted to adult readers. Proposed by E.C. Myers.

You can view and download the full conference schedule here.

I would also like to thank Rose Fox, Readercon 24 Program Chair, and their committee for putting this program together. It is no small task coordinating everyone’s requests and a schedule with so many moving targets, while crafting a program that will appeal to the interests of such a diverse group of attendees. And I appreciate that YA, in particular, has received some more attention this year.

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signings of the apocalypse

I had a fantastic, authorly day in NYC yesterday that was not hampered at all by several poor transit decisions on my part. (Uh, if anyone wants an unlimited Metrocard good through 12/12/12, let me know, and I’ll mail it to you!) The more time I spend away from New York, the less competent I feel whenever I visit it…

The highlight of the trip, of course, was reading at Books of Wonder, my favorite book store in Manhattan. I’ve been going to readings and signings there for six or seven years, and once I began writing Fair Coin I hoped I would have my chance there one day. So I felt very lucky to be sitting up there with Colleen Clayton, Tiffany Schmidt, and Amy McNamara, with so many of our friends and people who love reading and publishing YA fiction on the other side of the table. Plus, mini-cupcakes! Many thanks to Peter, Scott, Allison, Alice, Corinne, and everyone at the store for their warm welcome!

The event had a nice turnout, the readings went well, I sold and signed some books, and it was great to catch up with friends from NY and beyond. I also had fun meeting up with my JABberwocky agents at their new(ish) office and touring book stores in the city with Tiffany. We hit pretty much every Barnes & Noble in Manhattan and signed our stock there, so if you’re looking for copies of her book, Send Me a Sign, or Quantum Coin, here’s where you can find them. They make great gifts! :)

Books of Wonder
18 W. 18th Street
212-989-3270
(They will also ship signed copies of Quantum Coin if you don’t live in NYC or otherwise can’t get to the store. Here’s the buy link!)

Barnes & Noble:

Union Square
33 East 17th Street

Fifth Ave
555 Fifth Avenue (46th St & Fifth)

Citigroup Center
160 E. 54th Street (near Lexington)

Tribeca
97 Warren Street

82nd & Broadway
2289 Broadway

86th & Lexington Ave
150 East 86th Street

The only B&N we didn’t make it to in Manhattan is the Greenwich Village store, which unfortunately is closing at the end of this month :(

And if you’ve purchased Fair Coin and/or Quantum Coin as a gift for someone or yourself, you can also request free, signed bookplates by e-mailing me at me [at] ecmyers [dot] net with your name, how you would like it personalized, and your mailing address. But if you want them in time for an impending holiday or the end of days, you should e-mail me soon!

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better the second time

In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit. Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort.

Last Friday was the 75th anniversary of the publication of The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien (preceding by one day the birthday of Bilbo and Frodo Baggins). Considered a classic children’s book and a master work of fantasy, this is also one of my favorite books. So it’s a little surprising that the first time I picked up The Hobbit, circa the 5th or 6th grade, I read that first page and promptly put it back on the shelf of my classroom lending library.

I don’t know what caused me to bounce off the book so quickly. Possibly because Tolkien does take his time getting to the point, doesn’t he? Or maybe it all just seemed a little too silly at the time.  It just didn’t seem like a book for me, as much as I loved fantasy and science fiction even then.

The Hobbit appeared on a summer reading list for my 7th grade English class, and for whatever reason, I decided to give it another try. And I completely loved it. So much so, that I immediately dived into The Lord of the Rings, which was admittedly a slog a lot of the time, particularly in the first half of The Two Towers. I’m really glad I gave the book another chance.

This has happened for me with other books, too. Most notably, I bought a copy of The Silmarillion, but it took me ten years to actually finish it, at which point I inhaled it in about two days. Dune by Frank Herbert put me to sleep when I first tried to read it in the 7th grade, but I was suddenly able to appreciate it. And I now have no trouble getting through The Lord of the Rings whenever I reread it every couple of years.

Sometimes we revisit beloved books and either find that our tastes have changed too much to enjoy them any more, or they bring us back to the time and place in which we first read them. But how often do we revisit books that didn’t work for us the first time around? In my first encounter with The Catcher in the Rye, I was way too young to get it, but years later, it suddenly meant a lot more to me.

With so many books out there to read, these days I’m less inclined to finish a book that I’m not enjoying or come back to one that I couldn’t get into, but there’s something to be said for giving books a second chance. So much of the experience comes from the reader; even your mood affects whether or not you feel like reading a book. I guess it’s a matter of knowing the difference between “not for me” and “not for me right now.”

Do you have any books that you passed on or disliked at first, but fell in love with later on?

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north, miss tessmacher! north!

I probably should have mentioned this earlier, but my next reading from Fair Coin will be this Thursday, May 3 at 7:00 p.m. at Water Street Books, 26 Water Street, in Williamstown, MA. This event is generously co-sponsored by the Religion and English departments at Williams College.

If you live anywhere near Williamstown, I would love to see you there! A discussion and signing will follow the short reading, and there will be plenty of swag for the taking. I expect it to be a fun event, what with all the smart college kids and teachers around.

Apparently Christopher Reeve often performed in theatrical productions in Williamstown and was married there, so that’s kind of cool. Other notable individuals with links to Williamstown include quantum physicist William Wootters (best name ever!), the Barclay Jermain Professor of Natural Philosophy at Williams College; songwriter Cole Porter; Welsh actor Roger Rees; actor Matthew Perry; and SFF writer Paul Park.

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