Saturday, August 31, 2013


The price of admission to most conventions is sitting on panels to discuss various aspects of the genre. Sometimes these are on a subject you know and have an interest in discussing at length.  Oftimes it is otherwise and you must struggle to utter a single relevant comment. Worse is the situation where you are completely at sea, having no idea of what the other panelists are talking about,  and could care less.

There is a rush when you find yourself before a packed room of fans and beside some of our genre's notables and find that people are actually interested in what you have to say.  Well, at least appear to be interested. I always make a few notes, but thoughts and ideas bubble up during the discussion, which incidentally, often veers away from the stated subject and descends through a virtual rabbit hole into fantastic territory, especially when the panelists themselves get into it.

These ofttimes are the best remembered by panelists and audience alike.

The one thing that I try to hold in mind is that everyone in the room has paid to be there; not only in entrance fees, but for transportation, lodging, food, and a loss of time they could otherwise spend working or doing other things.  More importantly, that they chose to come to this panel over the others in hopes of illumination or simply to watch we trained monkeys perform.  Whatever the reason I always try to respect the audience and give them value for their investments.

Some panelists use the panel to hawk their books, announce new stories, or otherwise promote themselves, but this is the normal quid pro quo between readers and writers.

And one more reason to continue.


No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for reading my blog!