The Con Game

happy Autumnal Equinox all! So the fall literary conference season is rapidly approaching for Portland. We have Wordstock coming up in October, and then Orycon coming up in November.

Both of these have turned out to be surprising in different ways that I am coming to admire.

Wordstock, because apparently they are now being inclusive of genre fiction, whereas before I had become familiar with it as an event series that turned up its nose at horror, SF, or other types of “non-mainstream” (read: lowbrow) literature. Go WS. You are catching the vibe.

Orycon, because I had heard some pooh-pooing from people in the past about how it was primarily a con “for the fans” and did not have much in the way of value to those of us who write, create works of art or otherwise participate in putting on events and publications. But over the past several OC’s that I’ve attended, I’ve discovered that its hidden gem is that they have a LOT of very worthwhile writing and art workshops presented to you by a number of well known names in the field. Which would you rather attempt: Meeting your favorite author, name editor, or industry artist in a presentation room that has 1,000 other people in attendance? Or one with maybe 50 or even 25 people? Which one would help you be able to really get some good question/answer session and personal networking and feedback going on? In an atmosphere that is encouraging and inclusive of new potential talent? I rest my case.

Oh and to wrap things up for the end of summer, don’t miss the latest reading event at St. Johns Booksellers, and the ongoing Stone Soup reading series. Words is bustin out all over in Stumptown… I hope to see some friendly faces at one or more of these events coming up. If you spot me, come say hello. At least then I’ll know you’re reading my blog, if nothing else.. 😉



Hulu Stole My Thunder…!

Okay, soooo….

About 29 years ago, as a mere sapling of a girl, I came up with an original story idea: What about the story of a man, someone mysterious and perhaps even dark and handsome, who took up residence in a corner booth in some dive restaurant/bar. He would be some kind of wayfarer, charming and magnetic, but somewhat lonesome. People would come to him and tell him their troubles; somehow, from this very basic setting there would arise stories of an SF nature.

Fast forward to Spring of 2012, and what do I see, now being featured as an exclusive ongoing series on Hulu, but this television show.

I guess I can’t be too unhappy with them, because really it’s my own damn fault for not developing the concept further. Actually, what happened was this: I got about half a day’s worth into the story idea, and my excitement fizzled as I realized, “wait- that would be far too limiting. If the Mystery Man is confined to one spot in a diner someplace, there are so many other experiences he won’t be able to have. I don’t think I’d be able to come up with enough material for this to be interesting past one or two scenarios.”

Thus, the Mystery Man, as I originally imagined him, my tall, dark & handsome SF protagonist, went in a totally different direction and became the wandering hero, Geran. And I went on to write a whole bunch of stories that had a lot more to do with, probably, the Dark Tower meets Dr. Who than anything else. I may at some point go back and cannibalize those old stories for new material. (There’s also a secret connection who inspired my formulation of Geran as a fictional character, many years before I ever even knew he existed in real life… don’t worry he knows who he is.)

As to the folks who put on shows for… Congrats. You took my original idea, and you found a way to make it work. It would have taken me approximately until now to have even formed the personal depth of human understanding necessary to develop the addictive character & plot development which flows so naturally throughout this series. I’ll cede you this one. ;P

And Xander… He’s the only one who could have bested Geran in the charisma department. Just take a look at those eyeballs in action, man. Spooky…