Comic Con 2017 Panels: Steampunk Goodness and the End of the World, Ragnarok-Norse-Apocalypse Style

Yay! Comic Con time again. I’m very excited about my panels this time around, so here are the details.

First of all, let me just say that this is probably my favorite Salt Lake Comic Con banner yet–Gates McFadden, Dick Van Dyke, John Cusack–I mean, come on! This will be an awesome convention.

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My Panel Schedule

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I’m on two very different panels, but interestingly, they intersect in my series Peacock Lavine and the Aetherian Fates of Nótt: a steampunk adventure based on lesser-known Norse mythology–in Regency-era London, of course! I’ve published book one in this series, Piccadilly Valkyrie, but I’ve temporarily unpublished it so I can adapt it to the larger scope this story line has evolved into. I’ll post an update when this is available again.

The prequel Unwyrded is available for free if you’d like to jump in now. Find that in the post following this one.

So, without further ado, here are my panels! I’m so excited to be on these alongside authors I admire.

Steam, Gears, and Bygone Years

 

 

Ah, a back-to-back schedule . . . what a beautiful thing. I don’t know how on earth that happened, but I’ll just be quiet and not ask any questions!

If you’ve never been to Comic Con, there’s always a lot to take in, but especially for writers, artists, and creators. A lot of people don’t know about the panels that take place during the whole thing. It’s a wonderful way to jump into writing and start understanding different aspects of the business, from craft to marketing and beyond. If you’ve ever thought about being a fiction writer, you should come to this. It’s three days of affordable, solid programming from a variety of authors. It’s all geared to help you out.

Come say hello!

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Action, Austen, Alice, and More: Salt Lake Comic Con 2015 Recap #SLCC15

SL Comic Con Cindy-Grigg-1030x832Writing is often wonderful but just as often, it’s a total slog, so I love the opportunity to step back and attend conferences or conventions.

This past weekend, participating in panels at Salt Lake Comic Con 2015 was a blast and I enjoyed meeting so many writers and readers. Here’s a recap!

First off, we broke a world record, no big deal…

Second, a bunch of you signed my email list for editing information but if you took a card instead, here is a form where you can please send me your email. We’ll be in touch soon.

My favorite panels to observe included one for Mystery Science Theater 3000 fans, one about voice acting, and another about a really inspiring project for children facing difficult challenges: True Heroes, featuring Shannon Hale, Brandon Mull, Ally Condie, Jennifer A. Nielsen, Adam Sidwell, and others, with photography by Jonathan Diaz.

True Heroes

As for the panels I participated on, here’s a quick run-down:

IMG_2820Writing Action – I loved being on this panel alongside amazing authors Aaron Lee Yeager, Eric James Stone, Larry Correia, Robert J. Defendi, Frank Morin, and Charles E. Gannon. I was able to share a few things I’ve learned from writing my character in Piccadilly Valkyrie, Kára, an immortal who confronts her complex relationship with violence and self-defense, and who trains to be a bare-knuckle boxer when exiled to live among mortals in early 19th century London.

IMG_2886Tea Time with Miss Austen – I loved meeting Shannon Hale,
author of Austenland, awesome podcasters Lola Binkerd and Emma Fyffe, and fellow authors Mette Ivie Harrison, Shallee McArthur, and E.B. Wheeler.  We explored why Austen is still relevant today and I believe our consensus was that if she was born in our day and age, she would be writing an awesome t.v. series with the likes of Tina Fey.


Psychopomps Pram Full Cover 20150 Years Down the Rabbit Hole (Through the Looking Glass / Lewis Carroll) – It was a pleasure meeting my fellow panelists Jessica Day George, Nathan Croft, Benjamin Tilton, and I particularly enjoyed sitting next to Frank Beddor, author of The Looking Glass Wars series, who inspired me with his awesome, intensive sourcebook on the topic. He is definitely an author who does his research! During this panel I was able to contribute a bit about Mischmasch, Carroll’s ‘self-published’ periodical among friends and family and the inspiration for the name of my boutique press Misch Masch Publishing. Check out our latest anthology, just in time for the Halloween season. Psychopomps: Shepherd of the Dead features several tales about those beings who may escort us into the next life.

Digital (e-Book) or Paperback

Finally, please consider joining my social media channels to the right, or at least browse through them so you can see the fun cosplay!

Highlights from LTUE 2015: Why I Love Writing Conferences!

As a writer, I’ve learned to love the conference scene. Actually, I’m completely drained by large social gatherings–evidence that I am a legitimate introvert. But here’s why I have evolved to deem conferences worthy of the energy expenditure!

This list is in context of a few highlights from Life, the Universe, and Everything 2015 (LTUE), a symposium for speculative fiction authors, which was absolutely awesome this weekend. I woke up today wired with so many ideas for my works in progress. Pretty epic for a Monday morning…!

LTUE Symposium 2015

1. The People (and Aliens, Supernaturals, Superheroes…)

I meet so many interesting writers and other creative people, which is a treat. Case in point, props to author Adam Jordan’s approach to putting a writer’s group together. Awesome!

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Yes, it’s a relief to get away from that intensity but for a few days there’s just something about having at least some instant rapport and understanding with people. I loved this past weekend’s Life, the Universe, and Everything symposium for this very reason.

2. The Social Challenge

That’s not to say I don’t feel awkward 50% of the time. Conferences are a nice place to reconnect with talking to real people!

Conferences are also full of organized ways to team up or participate with others. I loved this campaign at LTUE put on by “The Secret Door Society“. To include bathroom stall doors. 🙂

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3. The Practice (Pitch or Crit Sessions)

Speaking of challenge, I love how LTUE and other conferences offer the opportunity to book “pitch or critique sessions” with publishers and agents. It’s terrifying, yes. But it makes you get that stinking elevator speech, outline, summary, or manuscript done.

It’s the best kind of practice, in my book, because it’s not practice. It’s the real thing–well, with training wheels, I suppose. Because everyone I’ve pitched to has been understanding, encouraging, and constructively helpful to me getting better at it. I advocate taking advantage of this at conferences! It’s worth the $10-20 sign-up fee. Even though those 10 minutes will cause you days of anxiety, as they definitely do to me.

I got so much awesome feedback from my pitch to Toni Weisskopf of Baen Books. It’s pretty cool to have access to this kind of coaching and input.

4. The Creative Inspiration

The writing panel topics are inspiring, and I especially like productivity-focused presentations. I get re-inspired on how to be disciplined about my writing. This weekend, I loved Johnny Worthen’s presentation on writing a novel in 90 days. His energy and sense of humor is so infectious!

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And the character sourcing is inspiring, too. I get so many ideas just from observing other attendees. If you think airports are great for people watching, you haven’t been to a fantasy or science fiction conference.  It really is like a creativity energy-shot.

5. The Intersection with Other Art Forms

Even conferences focused on writing, like LTUE, draw other artistic forms and I love seeing those creations. Like this fabulous steampunk dragon by J. Scott Savage!

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So if you’re a writer, start finding your way to conferences! Even if it’s a stretch.

And thanks to my fellow panelists in the Madeleine L’Engle and E. E. “Doc” Smith – Space Travel – Warp Speed vs Tesseract discussion. We covered the far reaches of the galaxy with that one. I loved the audience participation and hope it sparked some creative ideas for everyone. Afterwards, I thought about how we touched on the line between hard science fiction realism and daring to broach the more speculative non-realistic. I know I’m always trying to balance those myself. It’s a fine but fun line to venture along!

Have a fantastic week…!

My Panelist Schedule for Comic Con 2015 #FanX15 in SLC

Comic Con FanX 2015

I am super excited to be a panelist at next week’s Comic Con 2015: Fan Experience in Salt Lake City, Utah. The last couple have been an absolute blast! 

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For all you writers, my book about how to save your poor wrists while amplifying your hourly word count came out a month ago: HOW TO DICTATE YOUR WRITING LIKE IT’S…2015. The first book in my middle grade series HULDUSNOOPS is also available, for those of you needing some Icelandic fantasy / sci fi in your lives (this should be all of you).

13 Advantages to Dictating Your Writing and What a Writing Walkabout Looks Like

Here is my panelist schedule, though you can also search for my name on the main event site or download the app. Please come up and say hi!

Friday January 30, 2015

2:00 pm: Writing and Health, Ballroom C

8:00 pm: Equality in Speculative Fiction, Ballroom C

I love going to Cons. The energy you get from being around that much nerdiness and creativity is palpable. And in the words of Stan Lee:

Comic Con Stan Lee Quote

So. Whether you are local or need to make the trip, it sounds like this is where you should be next weekend!!

But if you can’t make it, I’ll be posting about epic costumes and miscellany on Instagram which feeds to the right on this blog.