my Philcon 2022 schedule

What is likely to be my last public appearance of 2022 will be as the Principal Speaker at Philcon 2022 in Cherry Hill, New Jersey from 18-20 November.

Philcon is one of the oldest science fiction conventions, having gotten its start in 1936 when nine fans (among them future publisher of DAW Books Donald A. Wollheim, super-fan David Kyle, and future author Frederik Pohl) gathered in Philadelphia. It was the first convention I attended as a professional in the field after I started working for the late Byron Preiss in 1993 (prior to that, I’d attended cons — including a couple of prior Philcons — either as a fan or as press as part of The Chronic Rift).

And this year, three decades after my first time at Philcon as part of the Rift crew, I’m the guest of honor! And I’ll be launching two books, Phoenix Precinct (the sixth novel in my fantasy/police procedure series) and The Eye of Argon and the Further Adventures of Grignr the Barbarian (in which I’ll have a story).

Here’s my schedule…

EDITED TO ADD: Now with fellow panelists!

Friday

9-10pm: The Eye of Argon: The Play, w/Michael A. Ventrella, Ian Randal Strock, Gregory Frost, Hildy Silverman, Peter Prellwitz, and Jean Marie Ward (Grand Ballroom)

Saturday

11am-noon: “Science Fiction/Mystery Crossovers,” w/Russ Colchamiro, Roberta Rogow, Storm Humbert, and Aaron Rosenberg (Plaza 4)

12-1pm: Tea with Keith R.A. DeCandido (con suite)

2-3pm: Principal Speaker: Keith R.A. DeCandido (Grand Ballroom) — I will probably do this as a Q&A…

3-4pm: autographing, w/Charles Urbach (autograph area)

5-6pm: “Revisiting Deep Space Nine: Still More to Talk About,” w/Susan Shwartz, Dan Persons, Russell J. Handelman, and Savan Gupta (Plaza 2)

8-10pm: eSpec Books Launch Party for Phoenix Precinct, Espirit de Corpse, and Yeti Left Home (con suite) — this is the official launch of the three books that were recently successfully crowdfunded, including my own Phoenix Precinct

Sunday

11am-noon: “Writing in Someone Else’s Universe,” w/Elektra Hammond, Susan Shwartz, Aaron Rosenberg, Robert E. Waters (Plaza 4)

12.30-1pm: reading (readings room) — I will be reading one of the many short stories I’ve had out this year; which one will be up to the audience

1-2pm: “Star Trek in 2022,” w/Matt Black, Jim Prego, Hildy Silverman, and Orenthal V. Hawkins (Plaza 5)

On those vanishingly rare occasions when I’m not programmed, I’ll be in the dealer’s room at the eSpec Books table selling and signing books.

Looking forward to seeing folks there!

my Bubonicon 53 schedule

From 26-28 August — which is this coming weekend! — I will be one of the Guests of Honor at Bubonicon 53 in Albuquerque, New Mexico. I will be there alongside my fellow GoH Rae Carson, Toastmaster A. Lee Martinez, Guest Artist Chaz Kemp, Science Speaker Courtney Willis, PhD, as well as the following guests: Jeff Benham, Lou J. Berger, Craig A. Butler, Yvonne Coats, Stephen R. Donaldson, Sheila Finch, C.C. Finlay, Gordon Garb, Josh Gentry, Gail Gerstner-Miller, Loretta Hall, Reese Hogan, Betsy James, Darynda Jones, Carolyn Kay, Jeffe Kennedy, Jane Lindskold, Emily Mah, Christopher Marsh, George RR Martin (yes, really), Susan R. Matthews, Wil McCarthy, John Maddox Roberts, Joan S. Saberhagen, Jon Sanchez, Melinda M. Snodgrass, Jim Sorenson, Jeanne C. Stein, S.M. Stirling, David Lee Summers, John Sumrow, Lauren C. Teffeau, Ian Tregillis,¬†Sarena Ulibarri, Robert E. Vardeman,¬†Carrie Vaughn, Walter Jon Williams, and Connie Willis.

I will be doing panels and stuff, and also will have a table to sell stuff. (I assume said table is in the dealer room….) Here’s my schedule:

Friday

5-6pm: “It’s a Funny Story… Writing Humor,” w/Yvonne Coats, Darynda Jones, Emily Mah, and Connie Willis (Salon E)

6-6.30pm: opening ceremonies (Salon E)

Saturday

11am-noon: “50 Minutes with Keith R.A. DeCandido” (Cimarron/Las Cruces)

2-3pm: “Anthologies Assemble! More than Ever Before,” w/C.C. Finlay, Joan S. Saberhagen, Jeanne C. Stein, and Sarena Ulibarri (Salon E)

4.25-5.35pm: mass autographing session (Salon A-E)

7-9.30pm: “Costume Contest” — I’ll be one of the judges, alongside Joan S. Saberhagen & Jeanne C. Stein (Salon A-E)

Sunday

11am-12.30pm: “Co-Guests of Honor Presentation,” w/Rae Carson and A. Lee Martinez (Salon E)

3.30-4.30pm: “Once Upon a Time: The Modern Fairy Tale,” w/Chaz Kemp, A. Lee Martinez, Jeanne C. Stein, and Connie Willis (Salon E)

4.30-5pm: closing ceremonies (Salon E)

Looking forward to seeing folks there!

my tentative Dragon Con 2022 schedule

I will be back at Dragon Con over Labor Day weekend in Atlanta at the start of next month, and the programming folks have sent me my preliminary schedule.

I’m disappointed that DC won’t be requiring that all attendees be vaccinated — that should be SOP at every convention, and that it isn’t depresses the fuck out of me — but they are requiring that everyone be masked, which is acceptable.

Anyhow, this is a light schedule by my standards, as I “only” have 15 program items from the con, plus I’ll be putting in four autograph sessions at Bard’s Tower in the Vendor Hall.

Here’s where to find me. I will update this post once I get information like who else is on the panels with me……

EDITED TO ADD: The other panelists have been added, plus there’s an additional panel Saturday night at 10pm….

Thursday

10-11am: “Batman and X-Men: Best Superhero Cartoons Ever,” w/Michael Bailey, Joe Crowe, and Michael Williams (American Sci-Fi Classics Track, virtual panel)

8.30-9.30pm: “Classic Sci-Fi Movie Novelizations: The Dramatic Readings,” w/Darin M. Bush, John Hudgens, ToniAnn Marini, and James Palmer (American Sci-Fi Classics Track, Marriott M103-M105)

Friday

10-11am: autographing (Bard’s Tower, America’s Mart, Floor 2)

1-2pm: Practical Self-Defense Workshop (Workshops, Hilton 404-405)

2.30-3.30pm: “Alien: The Expanding Darkness,” w/Clara Arija, Andrew E.C. Gaska, Steve Saffel, and Alex White (Horror Track, Westin Peachtree 1-2)

4-5pm: “The Batman — Reinvented… Again,” w/Philip Greco, Wendy Hembrock, Robyn McGlotten, Cammien Ray (American Science Fiction TV & Film, Marriott M302-M303)

7-8pm: “Humor in SF,” w/Esther M. Friesner, Lydia Sherrer, Benjamin Wallace, and Jean Marie Ward (Science Fiction Literature, Hyatt Embassy AB)

Saturday

10-11am: autographing (Bard’s Tower, America’s Mart, Floor 2)

11.30am-12.30pm: “From Screen to Page: Writing Tie-in Novels,” w/Clay Griffith, Michael Haslip, Greg Keyes, John Jackson Miller, and Steve Saffel (Science Fiction Literature, Hyatt Embassy AB)

2.30-3.30pm: “Cage vs. Cage: The All-Nicolas Cage Cage Match,” w/Joe Crowe,
ToniAnn Marini, and Will Price (American Sci-Fi Classics Track, Marriott M103-M105)

4-5pm: reading (Hyatt Vinings)

5.30-7pm: autographing (Bard’s Tower, America’s Mart, Floor 2)

10-11pm: “Zombies vs. Aliens: Humans Strike Back!” w/David Petrie, Alison Sky Richards, and Marisa Wolf (Apocalypse Rising Track, Westin Chastain F-G)

Sunday

11.30am-12.30pm: “Batman: The Animated Series Bat-a-versary,” w/Michael Bailey, Mike
Faber, and James Palmer (American Sci-Fi Classics Track, Marriott M103-M105)

1-3pm: autographing (Bard’s Tower, America’s Mart, Floor 2)

4-5pm: autographing (Marriott International Hall South 1-3)

5.30-6.30pm: “The Canon of Doctor Who,” w/Robert Bowen, R. Alan Siler, Andy Teal, J.M. Tuffley, and Anthony Williams (Brit Track, Hilton Galleria 5)

Monday

10-11am: “Roll-a-Panel: Movies of 1982 and 1987,” w/John Hudgens, Stuart Jaffe, Gary Mitchel, Bill Mulligan, and William Joseph Roberts (American Sci-Fi Classics Track, Marriott M103-M105)

11.30am-12.30pm: “Shang-Chi: Ta Lo or Bust,” Jeff Burns, Mike Faber, Birmagidra Gainor, and Bethany Kesler (American Science Fiction TV & Film, Marriott M302-M303)

1-2pm: “Where Do You Get Your Ideas?” w/Cecilia Dominic, Anthony Francis, D.B. Jackson, Steve Saffel, and Kimbra Swain (Writing Track, Hyatt Embassy EF)

back home from Shore Leave

me at the Meet the Pros event, picture by Robert Greenberger

We’re back from a most excellent Shore Leave 42. Shore Leave has always been one of my absolute favorite conventions, and I’ve really missed it. They went virtual for both 2020 and 2021, and it was so wonderful to be able to see the regulars there, and folks I haven’t seen in ages, or at least not as much as I’d like to have.

The drive down was blisfully uneventful, which is more than can be said for our arrival. The Hunt Valley Inn is currently privately owned but considered a Marriott hotel, which means they get to use the Marriott name but they’re way down on the totem pole when it comes to Marriott services. The hotel was in need of a facelift even before the apocalypse two years ago, and now it’s even worse. A storm earlier in the week also knocked out their computer system, so everything was incredibly slow. As a result, it took hours to check into the hotel and hours more before rooms were ready because, on top of everything else they — like every hotel — is having a hard time staffing.

Once we got checked in, everything was much better. We put out my books and Wrenn’s stuffies at the eSpec Books table, which Danielle Ackley-McPhail and Mike McPhail provided in exchange for crash space (we like rooming with them anyhow, so it works out nicely). At 4pm, I did a panel with a bunch of other authors where we pimped our upcoming work, which included Christopher D. Abbott, Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Christopher L. Bennett, Russ Colchamiro, Heather E. Hutsell, David Mack, and Sherri Cook Woosley.

After the panel, our room was finally ready, so we could put stuff in the car. The good news was that it was right near a back entrance which led to a less-well-used part of the parking lot, so unpacking (and later repacking) the car was incredibly easy….

At 8pm, I did a panel on kick-ass heroes who don’t actually kick asses. Rigel Ailur moderated, and Christopher L. Bennett, Susan Stanislaw Olesen, TJ Perkins, and I all threw out all kinds of folks who were awesome without actually beating people up. Among those mentioned were The Doctor, Odo, my own Sonek Pran, and Columbo.

As always Friday at Shore Leave, Meet the Pros was at 10pm. Running from then until midnight, the authors are all set up at tables in the hallway outside the main ballroom where we autograph books (and often sell them). I sold a bunch of books, signed a bunch more books, saw lots of wonderful people, and had fun bantering with Hildy Silverman (and her kid, Winter) and Glenn Hauman, whom I was between. (The picture above was taken by Bob Greenberger at that event.)

I declined to go to the bar Friday night because Saturday was a very very very full day. It began with a 10am concert. Normally the Boogie Knights play at 11am Saturday morning, following the movie trailers, but there were too many actor guests who needed the main stage, so they moved the trailers to Salon F, and put us on at 10am. To that end, I put up a dozen or so flyers around the hotel Friday night saying that our concert was an hour early.

It seems to have worked, since we got a very good crowd for the show that was also our 40th anniversary gig. The BKs started — with Dave Keefer, John Scheeler, Lance Woods, the late great Bob Ahrens, and Barb Helfer — at Shore Leave in 1982. The band has gone through many permutations since. It’s older than one of its current members — Kate Greenberger — and it’s outlived one of its founders — Bob, who sadly died in 2019. Sadly, Lynn Cunningham was unable to join us, but John, Dave, Kate, Sharon Palmer, Linda Swann, and I were all present and accounted for. I was a bit nervous, as I hadn’t really touched my percussion since our February 2020 gig at Farpoint….

For our 40th anniversary we did a new version of one of our standards, “Polymorph Your Mother,” and did some classics — “Dragon Feeds Tonight,” “Jousting,” “Beware the Highwayman” — and some newer ones — “Sailin’ with Captain Morgan,” “One Little Trip,” “Wanted: Harem Guard.” Later that night, we also performed masquerade halftime, opening with “Earth Magic Girls,” reprising the new version of “Polymorph,” and ending with “Arthurian Pie.” I’m pleased to say that I remembered how to percuss, and we sounded pretty dang good, despite the usual sabotage by the tech crew of our sound system. (They’ll get it perfect one of these days….)

Video of the Saturday morning concert should be up on the Tube of You soon.

In between those two concerts, I did a very well attended practical self-defense workshop and a panel on assembling anthologies with Michael Jan Friedman, Joshua Palmatier, Mike McPhail, and Robert Greenberger, which was very wide-ranging and fun — we talked about crowdfunding a lot, as well as the art of story flow — and then I had to help Wrenn set up the author dinner.

So for years, several authors would make a dinner pilgrimage Saturday night to Andy Nelson’s Barbecue, which is a fabulous BBQ place on York Road about a mile and a half from the hotel. The problem was that the place isn’t that large, and more and more people kept wanting to go, plus at 7pm or so on a Saturday night, they’re often out of things.

In 2019, Wrenn and I decided to make a big order off the catering menu and have a buffet in the McCormick Suite for all the author guests to participate in. This had the dual effect of everyone getting the food they want from Andy Nelson’s and also enables dinner to be on-site (so if someone has a panel or event, they don’t have to drive back). Plus, it’s one time when the authors — who are generally kept pretty busy — to just sit and chat with each other.

It was a huge success in 2019, and was even more so this year, as we learned from our mistakes (for starters, way fewer baked beans and way more mac and cheese….) and everyone had a wonderful time. As an added bonus, Wrenn ordered two cakes from Wegman’s, as well as a birthday candle, to surprise Christopher D. Abbot’s husband Jeffrey, whose birthday was over the weekend.

We also had the Dave Galanter memorial right after dinner, which was a lovely remembrance of a fellow word-slinger and fantastic human whom we miss very much.

The Masquerade, scheduled to start at 8pm, finally started at 8.45pm (sigh), and then after the entries, we found out that we weren’t the only half-time act (providing entertainment for the crowd while the judges deliberate on who would win prizes), so we had to wait for two stand-up comics to do their bits before we went out.

After our set, I put the percussion back in the car, stopped by the bar in my garb — which included a kilt that Wrenn got for me last fall and which made its public debut Saturday night — and then went back to the room to change into less sweaty clothes (a few people requested to see the kilt) and hung out at the bar for a while in the Authors’ Corner. The authors always take over one of the three corners of the bar at the hotel, and — just as happened in 2019 with Anson Mount and Ethan Peck — one of the actor guests joined us to hang out, in this case the lovely John Billingsley, who joined me, Wrenn, Meredith Peruzzi, David Mack, Dayton Ward, Kevin Dilmore, Greg Cox, Amy Imhoff (and her friend Thomas), Scott Pearson (and his daughter Ella), Kelli Fitzpatrick, Kathleen David, Rigel Ailur, Hildy Silverman, John Coffren, Rich White, Morgan Binnix, Karen Roberson, Sue Kisenwhether, as well as possibly other people I’ve forgotten because I was drinking. A good time was had by all until the bar closed.

Sunday was crazypants — I had four panels, all in the Belmont room. Two two-hour blocks, between which I helped Wrenn pack the car and close out the hotel room. I did panels on writer’s accessories with David Mack, Greg Cox, Christopher D. Ochs, and Scott Pearson (Greg kept extolling the virtues of notepads and index cards); crowdfunding your novel with Joshua Palmatier, Danielle Ackley-McPhail, and Glenn Hauman; and recurring characters with Michael Jan Friedman, Russ Colchamiro, and Rich White. In addition, there was an improv thing Andrew Hiller led with me and Hildy Silverman where we on the spot created a monster. That was lots of fun.

After another hour or two of doing the dealer room and saying goodbye to people, Wrenn and I headed down to Columbia, Maryland to visit with her uncle Jack, a retired Christian Brother, whom we hadn’t seen since before the recent apocalypse. Wrenn talks to him on the phone all the time, but it was good to catch up in person.

And then we went home, stopping at a Popeye’s for dinner in Delaware near where Wrenn lived when she was married the first time, so I got an impromptu tour of her old neighborhood, which was fun.

We finally got in at midnight to two cats who were very glad to see us………

It was a great show, as always, but this year’s was special because of the induced hiatus. Shore Leave is always as much family reunion as it is a convention, and that was especially true this year. So great to see so many people, and I wish I’d gotten to spend more time with folks than I did (including some dear friends I barely even saw).

my Shore Leave 42 schedule

As I have been every year this millennium (whether it’s been in person or online), I will be at one of my absolute favorite cons, the Shore Leave convention at the Hunt Valley Inn in Cockeysville, Maryland (just north of Baltimore) as both an author guest and a musical guest. As the former, I’ll be doing panels and autographings and such like. As the latter, I’ll be doing two Boogie Knights concerts, one Saturday morning at 10am (NOTE: THIS IS NOT OUR USUAL 11AM SLOT, BUT INSTEAD WE’RE AN HOUR EARLY AT 10AM!!!!!), one Saturday night at masquerade halftime. This con, by the way, marks the BK’s 40th anniversary — the band debuted at Shore Leave 4 in 1982.

Here’s my whole schedule:

Friday

4-5pm: “The Latest and Greatest: Come Find Out What Our Authors Have Been Working On,” w/Christopher D. Abbott, Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Christopher L. Bennett, Russ Colchamiro, Heather E. Hutsell, David Mack, Richard C. White, and Sherri Cook Woosley (Salon F)

8-9pm: “Kick-Ass Heroes Who Don’t Kick Ass,” w/Rigel Ailur, Christopher L. Bennett, Susan Olesen, and T.J. Perkins (Salon E)

10pm-midnight: Meet the Pros party, w/ALL THE AUTHORS! (Hunt/Valley corridor)

Saturday

10-11am: Boogie Knights concert (Valley) — PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS SHOW IS AT 10AM AND NOT AT 11AM LIKE WE USUALLY ARE

1-2pm: self-defense workshop (Belmont)

4-5pm: “Anthologies Assemble,” w/Michael Jan Friedman, Robert Greenberger, Mike McPhail, and Joshua Palmatier (Salon A)

5-6pm: “eSpec Books Presents,” w/Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Christopher L. Bennett, Russ Colchamiro, Mike McPhail, Aaron Rosenberg, Jenifer Purcell Rosenberg, and Hildy Silverman (Belmont)

Masquerade halftime (some time after 8.30pm): Boogie Knights concert (Valley)

Sunday

10-11am: “Writerly Accessories,” w/Greg Cox, David Mack, Christopher D. Ochs, and Scott Pearson (Belmont)

11am-noon: “Crowdfunding Your Novel,” w/some other people, I’m not sure who (Belmont)

1-2pm: “Let’s Make a Monster,” w/Andrew Hiller, Heather E. Hutsell, Hildy Silverman, and Dayton Ward (Belmont)

2-3pm: “Recurring Characters,” w/Russ Colchamiro, Michael Jan Friedman and Richard C. White (Belmont)

Hope to see folks there!

my InConJunction 41 schedule

Next weekend, 1-3 July, I’ll be the Author Guest of Honor at InConJunction 41: The Next Chapter, to be held at the Indianapolis Marriott East in Indianapolis, Indiana.

I will have a table full of books to sell and sign, and I’ll also be doing a mess of programming:

Friday

3-4pm: “The Worst of Trek: TNG Seasons 4-7,” w/Ricky Lile, R.J. Sullivan, & Beckie Margedant (Main Programming)

5-6pm: reading (Main Programming)

7-8pm: opening ceremonies (Main Programming)

Saturday

11am-noon: “Meet the Romulans: What Makes a Good Alien?” w/Jo Boone & Rachel Luluch (Main Programming)

3-4pm: “Worldbuilding,” w/Mark Wandrey, T. Lee Harris, & Sara Deurell (Indianapolis Ballroom A-B)

6-7pm: self-defense workshop (Indianapolis Ballroom C)

9-10pm: “Randomly Randy,” w/Travis Clemmons, Elizabeth Davis, & Tammy Jo Eckhart (Indianapolis Ballroom A-B)

Sunday

12-1pm: Q&A (Main Programming)

2-3pm: “Character Creation,” w/T. Lee Harris & Sara Deurell (Indianapolis Ballroom A-B)

3-4pm: closing ceremonies (Main Programming)

Looking forward to seeing folks in Indy!

three conventions and one reading in July

After no public appearances in June, July’s going to be very busy, as I’ll be appearing in Indiana, Maryland, North Carolina, and right here in NYC…..

From 1-3 July, I’ll be the Author Guest of Honor at InConJunction 41 at the Indianapolis Marriott East in Indianapolis, Indiana. I’ll be doing programming and selling and signing books all weekend. Among the other guests are Artist GoH Ruth Thompson, Music GoH Marc Gunn, Toastmaster Lou Harry, and Special Guests Tammy Jo Eckart, PhD, Creepin’ It Burly, and Transylvanian Lip Treatment.

From 15-17 July, I’ll be — as always — one of the Author Guests and one of the Music Guests at Shore Leave 42 at the Hunt Valley Inn in Cockeysville, Maryland. I’ll be doing programming all weekend, and also performing with the Boogie Knights. The actor guests at SL42 include Brandon Routh, Aimee Garcia, Adam Baldwin, Summer Glau, Laz Alonso, Gates McFadden, Jessie Usher, Robert Duncan McNeill, BarBara Luna, and Eddie McClintock, and there are a metric buttload of author, science, and music guests. Shore Leave is one of my favorite cons ever, and I’ve really missed it the last two years…

On 19 July, I’ll be reading at the July edition of the Ample Hills Rooftop Readings at the Ample Hills Creamery-Gowanus in Brooklyn, New York, which I helped inaugurate back in 2021. I’ll be joined by Hildy Silverman, Elizabeth Nunez, and C.J. Farley. Tickets are $10 and they are limited in number (for both space and pandemic reasons), so get your tickets early!

From 28-31 July, I’ll be at GalaxyCon Raleigh at the Raleigh Convention Center in Raleigh, North Carolina. I’ll be there with Bard’s Tower, so I’ll be spending most of my time at their booth on the exhibit floor, alongside fellow word-slingers Claudia Gray, Marion G. Harmon, Neo Edmund, and Christopher Ruocchio.

I will be doing programming at at least InConJunction and Shore Leave, and possibly also at GalaxyCon — I’ll post my schedules the week of the show. Hoping to see folks at at least one of those four events!

talkin’ the third season of Batman ’66 on the Classics Track

It’s another Quarantine Panel from Dragon Con’s American Sci-Fi Classics Track, this one celebrating the release of OOFFF! BOFF! SPLATT!: The Subterranean Blue Grotto Essays on Batman ’66–Season Three by having the book’s editor, Jim Beard, and three of the contributors, John S. Drew of The Batcave Podcast, Michael Bailey of the Fortress of Baileytude podcasts, and, um, me to discuss the third season of the Adam West-Burt Ward classic.