I hope you’ll join in the fun at Conjecture/Concord starting tomorrow! Here is my complete weekend schedule:


**** You are MODERATOR of this panel.  Please see below.

Panel 1:  Fri 10/5  6:00 PM, 60 minutes.

Title: Believable Evil

Participants:       Maya Kaathryn Bohnhoff

Lise Breakey

Robert Mitchell Evans

M Todd Gallowglas

Nancy Holder(M)

Robert Pritchard

Precis:    What makes a good villain? How do you go about creating a

believable evil character? Authors will discuss their

favorite evil characters from their and other works and

discuss what makes them work.


Panel 2:  Fri 10/5  8:00 PM, 60 minutes.

Title: This is Horrible, Give Me More: The Appeal of Dystopias

Participants:                 Nancy Holder

Zak Jarvis(M)

Dani Kollin

Eytan Kollin

J.M. Perkins

Cynthia Ward

Precis:    Why do we devour so many books and films set in grim

totalitarian states or post-apocalyptic wastelands? It’s

especially popular in YA literature, where it may be an

extension of one of the main themes of Buffy the Vampire

Slayer, “high school is Hell”.


Panel 3:  Sat 10/6  1:00 PM, 60 minutes.

Title: Tell it in Letters (and Diaries): Epistolary Fantasy from Dracula to The Enchanted Chocolate Pot

Participants:         Ellen Dawn Benefield

Samantha Henderson

Nancy Holder

Patricia C. Wrede(M)

Precis:    The epistolary novel form has been with us since the 1600s

in English (the 1400s in Spanish), and offers a way to show

multiple viewpoints without requiring an omniscient

narrator. What are its advantages and disadvantages within

the fantasy genre? We’ve seen it deployed in The Moonstone,

Dracula, The Screwtape Letters, and our GoH’s Kate and

Cecelia series. (Also consider Emma Bull’s and Stephen

Brust’s Freedom and Necessity, which was written in a

series of letters exchanged between the authors. They never

discussed the book till it was finished.)


**** You are MODERATOR of this panel.  Please see below.

Panel 4:  Sat 10/6  2:00 PM, 60 minutes.

Title: Fannish Tail, Mass Market Dog

Participants:                        Belle

Jeff Berkwits

Ailene Marie Bonner [

Jean Graham

Nancy Holder(M)

Jason Lethert

Precis:    Cult hits and specialized genres have a long history in the

popular media. How is the relationship between fan appeal

and popular success changing? Is fannish enthusiasm

becoming more important as a path to success?


Panel 5:  Sat 10/6  3:30 PM, 30 minutes.

Title: Signing: Nancy Holder

Participants:                 Nancy Holder


Panel 6:  Sat 10/6  4:00 PM, 60 minutes.

Title: What’s Worth Watching?

Participants:       Ailene Marie Bonner(M)

Nancy Holder

Precis:    For those interested in science fiction, what recent movies

and current television shows are asking those important

questions of “What If?” and which ones are simply using

sci-fi tropes without provoking thought. Is Doctor Who

really the only game in town these days? Does Syfy have any

sci-fi? Is space no longer the final frontier on TV?


Panel 7:  Sat 10/6  5:00 PM, 60 minutes.

Title: Reading: Nancy Holder

Participants:                 Nancy Holder


Panel 8:  Sat 10/6  6:00 PM, 60 minutes.

Title: Bring on the Weird

Participants:          Ailene Marie Bonner

Patrick Connors

Nancy Holder

Zak Jarvis(M)

Jefferson P. Swycaffer

Precis:    Davy Jones and his crew in Pirates of the Caribbean point

the way to a new way of envisioning and creating truly

bizarre beings on film. Will we see more of this, or will

Hollywood remain constrained by what’s safe and accessible?

Will there ever be hope for a China Mieville movie?


**** You are MODERATOR of this panel.  Please see below.

Panel 9:  Sun 10/7 12 Noon, 60 minutes.

Title: It’s Not Magic if Everyone Can Do It — Acceptance or Genocide?

Participants:                   David Brin

James Floyd

Nancy Holder(M) [

Precis:    Today’s science would seem like magic to our ancestors —

but this “magic” is repeatable, and usable by anyone with

the tools/training. What if certain people had exclusive,

inborn abilities that only appeared in their bloodline?

Would that be magic? Could those without such powers

duplicate them with technology, or give them to their

children via genetic engineering? Does it only qualify as

“magic” if someone is able to change the rules by which the

universe operates? Would such people be worshipped,

tolerated, or exterminated? Didn’t Dr. Who destroy his home

planet over similar concerns? Consider King Uther

Pendragon’s genocide against magic users in the world of

the BBC’s Merlin — and the fear and hatred of mutants in

X-Men. If magic existed, could society tolerate it?


Panel 10:  Sun 10/7  3:00 PM, 60 minutes.

Title: Media Tie-Ins: Today’s Pulps?

Participants:         Ellen Dawn Benefield

Jean Graham

Nancy Holder

J.M. Perkins

Gary Westfahl

Precis:    Are the Star Trek, Star Wars, Buffy, and videogame novels

of today the equivalent of the pulp novels of the 40s and


** End Schedule **