EASTERCON, aka MANCUNICON aka THE 67th BRITISH NATIONAL SCIENCE FICTION CONVENTION approacheth! We hope to see loads of you there. Two of our intrepid Tor authors will be attending this year: Adrian Tchaikovsky and Charles Stross. We'll also be cheering on Paul Cornell, who is unable to attend the con but whose Tor.com novella, Witches of Lytchford, has been nominated for the British Science Fiction Association Awards, in the Short Fiction category.
So, for those of you organised enough to plan things in advance and/or those of you in possession of a timeturner/TARDIS/DeLorean who can plan things at your leisure, here's the full convention schedule. And because we are kind souls who want to make your life easier, here are Adrian and Charlie's events:
Friday 25th March
Twisting the Story
2:30pm - 4:00pm
Room 8 & 9
Intrigue! Betrayal! Revelation! All these options and more are available to the writer looking to take their story up a notch. But what is the key to making a good twist work, and work as SF or fantasy? Is it primarily a question of making the reader care about a character? Is it about managing and playing with the reader's expectations, particularly in those stories which draw on established structures, such as a heist or a procedural? Is it about the logical but unexpected implication of the speculative setting? Or is it something else entirely?
Panel: Charles Stross, Gillian Redfearn, Susan Bartholomew, David Tallerman and Chris Wooding
Saturday 26th March
Kaffeeklatsch with Charles Stross
2:30pm - 3:30pm
A chance to sit and chat in a small group with Charles Stross, Hugo and Locus Award-winning author of the Merchant Princes series and many more. Sign up in advance at Ops.
I Love Boardgames!
7pm - 8pm
This is a friendly recommendation session, where people involved in board gaming discuss their favourite games, and why they're worth playing. Come along and find out what's hot and what's not.
Panel: Adrian Tchaikovsky, Ruth O’Reilly, Tim Kirk, Esther MacCallum-Stewart and Melica Smith
Sunday 27th March
All Roads Lead to Kings Landing
11:30am - 12:30am
Room 8 & 9
Of all the challenges inherent in writing epic fantasy, perhaps one of the most significant is choreography: the need to ensure plotlines converge in the appropriate place, at the appropriate time, in the appropriate way. How can writers make sure their epic narratives stay coherent, and what do they do when their characters have other ideas?
Panel: Adrian Tchaikovsky, Fiona Anderson, Sebastien de Castell, Adrian Faulkner and Freda Warrington
If You Don't Scream You'll Laugh
11:30am - 12:30am
Sometimes it's hard to tell whether you're watching a horrific comedy or a comedic horror. Some works, such as Scream or Shaun of the Dead, exploit our urge to laugh at the macabre; others may aim for shock but end up in camp; a few, such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, manage to evoke both responses at will. Why does the line between horror and humour seem to be so thin? What does it say about our psychology that we react this way? And is the tension between fear and laughter easier to exploit in cinema than on the page?
Panel: Charles Stross, Piers Beckley, Ramsey Campbell, Sarah Pinborough and Donna Scott