This weekend is Philcon, for the first time in forever, our last convention of the year. We will again be having a launch party in the Con Suite so mark that in your calendars. We’ve been cooking since last month ūüôā Available schedules are below.

2019-11-05 14.03.55
Homemade Ginger KICK! Ginger Ale
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Some of our raffle prizes for the eSpec Books Launch Party









Danielle Ackley-McPhail

We talk a lot about ways to sell your novel, but what happens after your novel sells? A discussion of debut author questions, issues, opportunities, and challenges

Sat 12:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Two –¬†ASK A SMALL PUBLISHER

What do you want to know about getting into the world of publishing? Here’s a chance to ask the pros what they suggest

Sat 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM in Executive Suite 823 –¬†ESPEC BOOKS LAUNCH PARTY
eSpec Books invites you to join us in the Con Suite to celebrate their 2019 releases. There will be food, fun, authors, and prizes

Sat 10:00 PM in Plaza II –¬†MEET THE EDITORS!

Magazine and small press editors discuss what goes into creating their publications, from the economics of staying viable in the electronic age to getting appropriate submissions

Sun 1:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Two –¬†BOOK LAYOUT AND DESIGN FOR BEGINNERS

Whether you’re working in the literary profession, creating a family¬†history book, or putting together your own cookbook, you’ll have a much better result by learning the basics


Katrina S. Forest (mod), Robert E. Waters, Danielle Ackley-McPhail

Mike McPhail

Sat 11:00 AM in Plaza III –¬†HOW TO NOT SELL YOUR BOOK

Common (and not-so-common) mistakes to avoid while approaching publishers


Book covers? Magazine illustrations? Art shows? Commissions? Prints and posters? How does an artist make money in a genre art field

Sat 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM in Executive Suite 823 –¬†ESPEC BOOKS LAUNCH PARTY

eSpec Books invites you to join us in the Con Suite to celebrate their 2019 releases. There will be food, fun, authors, and prizes

Sat 10:00 PM in Plaza II – MEET THE EDITORS!

Magazine and small press editors discuss what goes into creating their publications, from the economics of staying viable in the electronic age to getting appropriate submissions

Robert E. Waters

Sat 10:00 AM in Crystal Ballroom Three‚ÄĒMy Favorite Books

Authors talk about their own literary influences and the works that inspired them to become writers.

Sat 11:00 AM in Executive Suite 923‚ÄĒWriting Branching Narratives for Game Play (3609)

What different considerations do you have to make when creating a story that needs to have multiple middles and possible endings?

Sun 12:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Two‚ÄĒHow Far Can You Suspend Someone’s Disbelief?¬†

How much can you ask a reader to take on faith before they can’t take your story seriously anymore? Are there ways to get readers willing to accept more challenging changes and assumptions? What authors have succeeded at pushing the boundaries without pushing their readers out of the story?

Sun 2:00 PM in Executive Suite 623‚ÄĒReadings: Katrina Forest, Robert E. Waters, Danielle Ackley-McPhail¬†

Keith R.A. DeCandido

Schedule available on his blog.


Not going to Philcon? Megan Mackie will be at Grand Rapids ComiCon the same weekend!



small_dodo_transparentThe next round of conventions is about to hit. Myself, Mike McPhail, and Christine Norris will be at the Collingswood Book Festival in Collingswood, NJ this Saturday. But our next convention is Capclave in Rockville, MD on October 18-20. An intimate comfortable show where the focus is reading, literature, and the business of publishing.

eSpec, of course, will have a presence in the dealer’s room, as well as on programming.

Our attending authors are:

You can access their schedules by clicking on the above links and then clicking on the link next to their bio on the Capclave site. Please be sure to come by and say hi if you are there. It is the perfect time to get your books signed or to ask us your questions. There is a Meet the Pros event scheduled, and, as the convention is rather informal, most of us tend to hang out and chat in the public spaces in between responsibilities.

For those not attending Capclave, Misty Massey will be at  The Palmetto Pirate Festival in Moncks Corner, SC on October 12 and at MultiverseCon in Atlanta, Georgia October 18-20, along with John Hartness!

If you are at any of those shows, please come be social!




Once more, eSpec is proud to announce our newest title, just now off to press: In Harm’s Way edited by Mike McPhail, the next in the award-winning Defending the Future anthology series.

With hope, the book will process in time to also debut at Shore Leave, where authors Robert Greenberger, Aaron Rosenberg, and Danielle Ackley-McPhail will be in attendance, along with editor and cover artist, Mike McPhail.

Cover art and design by Mike McPhail, McP Digital Graphics.

No One Left Behind

When fire and steel meet flesh and bone, a soldier learns a hard truth: you’re not fighting for Glory and Honor, but for survival, for you and your comrades, and you will be damned if you’re going to leave any of them behind.

Join us for twelve tales of military heroism and courage in the face of a hostile enemy.

With stories by Brenda Cooper, Bud Sparhawk, David Sherman, Robert E. Waters, Jeff Young, James Chambers, Lisanne Norman, Robert Greenberger, Aaron Rosenberg, Christopher M. Hiles, Eric V. Hardenbrook, and Danielle Ackley-McPhail


All the cool kids are doing it…so…

Here’s our schedule for Shore Leave, as well as links to other eSpec authors who will be there! As always, if we aren’t in a panel, look for us in the dealer’s room! The dealer’s room is closed? Check in the bar!


Danielle Ackley-McPhail

Friday –

10pm – Hunt Valley Hallway – Meet the Pros

Saturday –

10am – Derby – The Worth of Workshops and Writing Classes
Panelists who have attended writing workshops and/or classes discuss what they got out of the experience, what they wish they would have known going in, and the impact it had on their writing practice and/or career.

Panelists: Kelli Fitzpatrick, Jim Johnson, Derek Attico, Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Lorraine Anderson

5pm – Derby – Wearing Too Many Hats
Publishing, editing, promoting and writing‚ÄĒwhat happens when¬†your different roles collide? How do you find time for the varying¬†responsibilities needed to independently publish in today‚Äôs crowded¬†market? How do you produce content and get the word out, without¬†dropping the ball somewhere else?

Panelists: Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Jim Johnson, Amy Imhoff, Kim Headlee,
Heather E. Hutsell

6pm – Derby – Meeting eSpec Books
The publishers, editors, and authors of eSpec Books discuss their new and upcoming releases, including novels by Keith R.A. DeCandido, Christopher Bennett, and Bud Sparhawk and new volumes in their ever-popular Defending the Future and Beyond the Cradle anthology series.

Panelists: Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Mike McPhail, Keith R.A. DeCandido,
Christopher L. Bennett, Robert Greenberger, Dayton Ward

Sunday –

Noon – Chase – Coming Out of the Desert
Being creative can be difficult when the stresses of life get in the way. How to cope when your muse goes missing and there are still deadlines to be met.

Panelists: Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Dayton Ward, Richard White, Lorraine
Anderson, Michael Jan Friedman

1pm – Chase – Building an Anthology
From author-wrangling to story order, cover design to well-balanced
plot lines, how to ensure an anthology or collection comes together
in its best final form.

Panelists: Mike McPhail, Joshua Palmatier, Phil Giunta, Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Michael Jan Friedman

Mike McPhail

Friday –

5pm – Chase – Writing for Themed Anthologies
Many short story markets are themed anthologies, rather than simply SF&F magazines. Panelists discuss how to write a story that fits
the theme and stays within a set word count!

Panelists: Joshua Palmatier, Hildy Silverman, Keith R.A. DeCandido, Mike
McPhail, Susan Olesen

6pm – Belmont – Effective Cover Design
Whether you are creating your own cover or working with the publisher’s art department, how to come up with an effective concept
everyone can be happy with. What works, what doesn’t, and how
much does it matter in the end?

Panelists: Mike McPhail, Aaron Rosenberg, Greg Cox, Joshua Palmatier

10pm – Hunt Valley Hallway – Meet the Pros

Saturday –

1pm – Chase – How Does Fear of Criticism Affect Your Writing?
Authors’ works rarely escape criticism. As a writer, how do you
cope with others ‚Äúcalling your baby ugly‚ÄĚ? Can you separate
negative critiques from personal criticism? Do you ever respond?
And have you ever not written a story because you knew it would
provoke a response?

Panelists: Hildy Silverman, Heather E. Hutsell, Mike McPhail, Phil Giunta,
Susan Olesen

6pm – Derby – Meeting eSpec Books
The publishers, editors, and authors of eSpec Books discuss their new and upcoming releases, including novels by Keith R.A. DeCandido, Christopher Bennett, and Bud Sparhawk and new volumes in their ever-popular Defending the Future and Beyond the Cradle anthology series.

Panelists: Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Mike McPhail, Keith R.A. DeCandido,
Christopher L. Bennett, Robert Greenberger, Dayton Ward

Sunday –

1pm – Chase – Building an Anthology
From author-wrangling to story order, cover design to well-balanced
plot lines, how to ensure an anthology or collection comes together
in its best final form.

Panelists: Mike McPhail, Joshua Palmatier, Phil Giunta, Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Michael Jan Friedman

And Others…

Keith R.A. DeCandido’s Schedule

Dayton Ward’s Schedule


Wow…can’t believe Balticon 53 is rapidly approaching. The following might change slightly, but this is our current schedules. Any time not listed below, you can generally find us in the dealer’s room.

Danielle Ackley-McPhail

Saturday, May 25

12pm –¬†Book Design 101
Room 8029, 12pm – 12:55pm
2pm –¬†Balticon Short Takes
Kent, 2pm – 3:55pm
8pm –¬†Readings: Ackley-McPhail, DeCandido
St. George, 8pm – 8:55pm

Sunday, May 26

7pm –¬†eSpec Book Launch Party
Baltimore Ballroom A, 7pm – 8:55pm

Mike McPhail

Friday, May 24

5pm –¬†Logistics and Tactics: Writing Campaigns
Watertable BC, 5pm – 5:55pm

Sunday, May 26

7pm –¬†eSpec Book Launch Party
Baltimore Ballroom A, 7pm – 8:55pm


For those heading to Farpoint this upcoming weekend, or just in the area and feel like saying Hi!, below is our schedule. As always, when we aren’t on panels during the day, we are in the dealers room. And, at some point, I’m sure you can find me in the bar! Just hanging out, of course ūüôā

Ackley-McPhail, Danielle

Farpoint Book Fair ‚Äď Fri 10:00 PM ‚Äď Hunt Valley Hallway

Reading (McPhail; Mack; Ransom) ‚Äď Sat 1:00 PM ‚Äď Salon E

Using Social Media Effectively ‚Äď Sun 10:00 AM ‚Äď Salon D

Writing Genre Mash-Ups ‚Äď Sun NOON ‚Äď Salon C

McPhail, Mike

Farpoint Book Fair ‚Äď Fri 10:00¬†PM ‚Äď Hunt Valley Hallway

Come As You Are ‚Äď Sat 3:00 PM ‚Äď Salon F

Military Fact V. Fiction ‚Äď Sat 5:00 PM ‚Äď Salon C


If we are lucky, we will be featuring two new books next weekend, Keith R.A. DeCandido’s Mermaid Precinct, and the re-release of James Chambers’ Three Chords of Chaos. Both books release later this year, so these are pre-publication copies.¬† James won’t be at the convention, but Keith will.


Shattered Dreams: The Shardies War

Whew! November is very busy for us these year. This coming weekend is the only one we don’t have a convention.

Here are the schedules we have been assigned (subject to change without prior notification.) 

As always, we can be found in the dealers room at each convention when we are not on panels. Unless, of course, the dealers room is closed, in which case you’ll find us somewhere if you try hard enough, but I can’t tell you where ūüôā

DerpyCon – November 9 – 11 – Morristown, NJ

Schedule for Mike McPhail and Danielle Ackley-McPhail

Opening Ceremony Friday 2 PM-3 PM Main Events
Book Design for Beginners Friday 9:15 PM-10:15 PM Panel 2

Crowdfunding for the Beginner Saturday  2:45 PM-3:45 PM Panel 1

Publishing Q and A Sunday 10:15 AM-11:15 AM Panel 2
Sunday Morning Mad Libs Sunday 12:15-1:15 PM Panels 3 (Danielle only)

Philcon – November 16 – 18 – Cherry Hill, NJ

Schedule for Danielle Ackley-McPhail

Fri 6:00 PM in Plaza II (Two) (1 hour)
    [Panelists: Chris Kreuter (mod), Paul Levinson, Danielle
¬† ¬† Ackley-McPhail, April Grey, Michael D’Ambrosio, Russ Colchamiro]
    When is it better to shop your book around to publishers, and when
    does it make more sense to put it out yourself
Fri 7:00 PM in Executive Suite 623 (1 hour)
    [Panelists: Darrell Schweitzer (mod), Danielle Ackley-McPhail]
Sat 12:00 PM in Plaza II (Two) (1 hour)
    [Panelists: Alex Shvartsman (mod), Aaron Rosenberg, Danielle
    Ackley-McPhail, Paul Levinson, Ken Altabef]
    From cover design to distribution options, where do you take your
Sat 4:00 PM in Executive Suite 623 (1 hour)
    [Panelists: April Grey (mod), Elizabeth Crowens, Sally Wiener
    Grotta, Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Roberta Rogow, Elektra Hammond]
Sat 7:00 PM in Executive Suite 823 (1 hour)
    [Panelists: Danielle Ackley-McPhail (mod), Mike McPhail]
Sun 1:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Three (1 hour)
    [Panelists: Vikki Ciaffone (mod), Steven Brust, Marshall Ryan
    Maresca, Bernie Mojzes, Danielle Ackley-McPhail]
¬† ¬† We’ve talked a lot over the years about how to avoid infodumping, or
    at least, giving your readers information in a way that is
    entertaining and easy to parse. But sometimes the question you ought
¬† ¬† to ask is not how to insert all the facts about the world you’ve
¬† ¬† built, but “is it necessary?
Schedule for Mike McPhail
Sat 10:00 AM in Plaza II (Two) (1 hour)
    [Panelists: Mike McPhail (mod), Chris Kreuter, Leighland Feinman,
    Glenn Hauman, Aaron Rosenberg, April Grey]
    How to plan the project, manage time, and stay on budget
Sat 1:00 PM in Plaza V (Five) (1 hour)
    [Panelists: Nathan Lilly (mod), Lisa Hertel, Heidi Hooper, Tess
    Kissinger, Mike McPhail, Robert Walters]
    Artists are always being asked to work for exposure. When is working
¬† ¬† for free (or ‚Äúon-spec‚ÄĚ) a bad idea? When is it a good idea? How
    do you know the difference
Sat 3:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Two (1 hour)
    [Panelists: Ray Ridenour (mod), Alan Beck, Eric Hardenbrook, Nathan
    Lilly, Mike McPhail]
    What are the best art applications? Platforms? Where do I learn to
    use them? Is a digital pen and tablet needed
Sat 7:00 PM in Executive Suite 823 (1 hour)
    [Panelists: Danielle Ackley-McPhail (mod), Mike McPhail]
Sat 9:00 PM in Plaza III (Three) (1 hour)
    [Panelists: Michael Swanwick (mod), Martin Berman-Gorvine, Eric
    Hardenbrook, Mike McPhail]
    Science Fiction is the genre best suited for ideas that challenge
    the status quo, because it is not bound by our reality as we know
    it. At the same time, SF has existed for long enough that it has
    become full of ossified paradigms that no longer force us to examine
    our perspectives. How do we keep our ideas relevant given the
    evolutionary nature of the genre while also dealing with the natural
    tendency of fiction to recycle cliches, frameworks, and touchstones
    that are familiar to us
Sun 12:00 PM in Crystal Ballroom Three (1 hour)
    [Panelists: Vikki Ciaffone (mod), Brenda W. Clough, John Monahan,
    Mike McPhail, Russell J. Handelman]
¬† ¬† You’ve got maps, star charts, cultures developed for a multitude of
    different races, and a timeline of the main historical developments
¬† ¬† over the last 1,000 years. But what you don’t have is any clue what
¬† ¬† to do with it all! Let’s see if we can help with that.

ChessieCon – November 24 – 26 – Timonium, MD

Schedule for Danielle Ackley-McPhail
Running a Small Press Friday 6:45pm GS1
Reading: Broad Universe Rapid-Fire Reading Friday 9:15pm GS2
**Moderator Time Management for the Overachieving Creator Saturday 10:00am GS1
**Moderator¬†It’s OK to Not Like Things…¬†Saturday 5:30pm GS1
Group Signing Saturday 6:45pm Atrium
Reading: Danielle Ackley-McPhail Sunday 11:15am C1-2
Schedule for Mike McPhail
Real Life Military vs SF/F Friday 8:00pm GS1
Put a Pretty Face on It РCover Design in the Age of Digital Art Saturday 12:30pm GS2
Group Signing Saturday 6:45pm Atrium


Hard to believe that Balticon is coming up in just two weeks. Once again, eSpec will be in the dealer’s room, when not on panels. We will also be holding our annual launch party on Sunday from 7pm to 9pm. Full schedule below.

How to be a Good Moderator    Room 8029          Fri 5:00 PM

Moderating a discussion panel at a convention is both easier and harder than it looks. Experienced moderators share their tips, tricks, and guidelines for getting the most out of the panel you’re moderating.

Writing Major Minor Characters    Room 8029    Fri 8:00 PM

They may not be your protagonists, but minor characters need to be fleshed out just as much as the heroes. How do minor characters enrich a story, and how can we make them interesting without letting them steal the spotlight?

Broad Universe Rapid-Fire Reading          Kent      Sat 1:00 PM

The authors of the Broad Universe writing organization share excerpts from their upcoming works.

eSpec Readings       St. George     Sat 7:00 PM

Authors Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Ken Schrader, and Michelle Sonnier read from their work.

eSpec Book Launch Party    Baltimore Ballroom A     Book Launches     Sun 7:00 PM   

Join eSpec Books for food, fun, and prizes in celebration of the release of their newest offerings of Paranormal Steampunk, The Clockwork Witch by Michelle D. Sonnier, Spirit Seeker by Jeff Young, and After Punk: Steampowered Tales of the Afterlife.

Outlining vs. Pantsing     Mount Washington     Mon 10:00 AM

Some storytellers require a detailed outline to start fleshing out their story, but others prefer to write by the seat of the pants. What are some techniques to help you get better at one when you prefer the other? Authors and game masters welcome!


It’s that time of year again! Convention time.

This weekend Mike McPhail and Danielle Ackley-McPhail represent eSpec Books at Balticon, in Baltimore, MD.

Danielle Ackley-McPhail

Saturday May 27, 2017

¬†11:00AM –¬†Book Design 101 Workshop

Sunday May 28, 2017

7:00PM –¬†eSpec Books Launch Party¬†– With John Hemry, Mike McPhail, Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Lee C. Hillman, Brian Koscienski, Chris Pisano, Jeff Young, Robert E. Waters, Peter Prellwitz, Chris Hiles, John L. French, Patrick Thomas and more.

Mike McPhail

Saturday May 27, 2017

Sunday May 28, 2017

¬†7:00PM –¬†eSpec Books Launch Party

Monday May 29, 2017


heliosphere_logo_wptheme5Hard to believe Heliosphere is just two weeks away, in Tarrytown, NY. I was pretty sure I had at least three weeks to get ready. :::sigh::: 

If you aren’t familiar with the convention don’t feel bad. This¬†is the first year. I’m excited to say I am one of the guests of honor, along with David Gerrold and Jacqueline Carey. I don’t have locations, but below is the current schedule for both myself and Mike McPhail.

Danielle Ackley-McPhail

Autograph Signing – Friday 4:45 – 5:45pm

Meet and Greet – Friday 8:00 – 10:00pm

Reading – Saturday at 10:00am.

Guest of Honor Spotlight (with Keith R.A. DeCandido) – Saturday 2:30 – 4:00pm

The Die Is Cast Launch Party – Saturday 6:00 – 8:00pm – There will be food, fun, and prizes, as usual, but this time around the only cooking I need to do is make some nummy baked goods to supplement what will already be there.

Kickstarter 101 – Sunday 10:00 – 11:30am


Mike McPhail

Starting Your Own Small Press – Saturday Noon – 1:30pm

The Die Is Cast Launch Party – Saturday 6:00 – 8:00pm

Breaking into the Industry as an Artist – Sunday Noon – 1:30pm

Books-n-Brews – to be scheduled




Hard to believe that Philcon is already coming up. eSpec Books will have a table in the dealer’s room, for those who need to bring their library up to date. We will also be holding a launch party Saturday from 7pm to 9pm in the Con Suite (823). Hope to see you there! Below is our full schedule.

Danielle Ackley-McPhail
Sat 7:00PM in Executive Suite 823 –¬†The eSpec Books Launch Party, Hour 1
Sat 8:00PM in Executive Suite 823 –¬†The eSpec Books Launch Party, Hour 2

Panelists: Danielle Ackley-McPhail (mod), Mike McPhail, Jeff Young, Robert E. Waters, James Chambers, Eric Hardenbrook, Lawrence M. Schoen

eSpec Books launches their new titles, The Best of Defending the Future, edited by Mike McPhail and Danielle Ackley-McPhail, POST by Brenda Cooper, and In the Lamplight, by L. Jagi Lamplighter. Join the authors and editors for food, fun, and prizes

Sun 11:00AM in Plaza III (Three) –¬†Marketing Multi-Genre Works
Sun 1:00PM in Plaza III (Three) –¬†So Should I Just Self-Publish Through Amazon, or What?¬†

Mike McPhail
Fri 9:00PM in Plaza III (Three) –¬†“Reverse the Polarity? But that Would…!”

Sat 11:00AM in Executive Suite C –¬†Shared Storytelling in Games
Sat 12:00PM in Plaza II (Two) –¬†What To Do When Real Science Outpaces Your Current SF Project¬†
Sat 7:00PM in Executive Suite 823 –¬†The eSpec Books Launch Party, Hour 1
Sat 8:00PM in Executive Suite 823 –¬†The eSpec Books Launch Party, Hour 2¬†


Hard to believe in just two weeks¬†we will be on our way out to Pittsburgh for Confluence. We are looking forward to seeing many of you there. Be sure to come by in the dealer’s room or at one of our panels to say Hey!
Below are our schedules:

Danielle Ackley-McPhail

Friday, July 29

8pm  Reading РAckley-McPhail, Koscienski

10pm  Weird Wild West
Commonwealth East

Saturday, July 30

1pm  How (Not) to Sabotage Your Writing

5pm  Promoting your writing

9pm  Angels, Demons, Djinn, and Ghouls
Commonwealth East

Mike McPhail

Friday, July 29

5pm  Claymore vs Scimitar vs Katana
Commonwealth East

8pm  Fast, Furious, and Credible

9pm  Bad Weapon Choices
Commonwealth East

Saturday, July 30

1pm  Fantasy Art
Commonwealth East


Whew! Can you say exhausted? I took yesterday off to recover and I’m still beat!

Balticon was a series of new experiences this year. After almost 15 years of attending, the last ten or so at the same location, the convention moved back down to Baltimore’s inner harbor for it’s celebrated 50th con.

This was a big one, folks. Loads and loads of guests, new venue, bonus Guests of Honors from years past. Needless to say all of these changes elevated the level of chaos this year as everyone scrambled to figure out what they were doing, when and where. There was a lot of walks down long corridors and wandering the maze to figure out where such programming rooms were, but all in all–other than my feet–the experience was less painful than I feared it might be.

On Friday night my first panel was Starting Your Own Small Press. This was very well attended for 5pm on a Friday night. The discussion was informative and well received and the audience had loads of great questions. If only it hadn’t been such a hike to find the room.

The only other thing I had on Friday was Meet the Guests. I showed up at the right room a little early to find a sign saying it had moved to the con suite, but never did see any of those who were supposed to participate and so wandered off to the bar with Jennifer Povey and The Weird Wild West contributor Ken Schrader, after waiting about fifteen minutes for something to happen.

Oh…and a fire scare. The whole building was evacuated around 7:30pm. I’m told someone one thought a smoke machine would really add some atmosphere to a concert going on…they were right. But no one was there to enjoy it once the alarm went off.

Me, Mike McPhail, John L. French, and Patrick Thomas waiting for the chaos to resume.

No programming for me on Saturday…or so I thought. Discovered that was when my reading was, and fortunately I discovered in time to actually attend because the room was pretty packed for the four authors reading. My Meet eSpec Books panel, however, had been moved to Saturday night without my knowledge and so I hung out for a little while in my room, then went to the game room where my good friends Alf and Cynthia regretted teaching me to play Ascension, then wandered off for a little while to Gail Z. Martin’s impromptu pre-release party for Modern Magic…instead of being where I was supposed to be.

0529161430a-1Now Sunday…we’ll have to talk about Sunday. The crazy descended. Con: I had to wake up uber early for a Book Design and Layout panel I was slated to give. That went REAL well, but was nowhere near long enough. Then right off to the dealer’s room where I got to meet Jody Lynn Nye and hug Larry Niven.

I participated in the Broad Universe Rapid Fire Reading, organized by Randee Dawn, then I rushed off to organized everything for the Gaslight and Grimm launch party. Discovered a bunch of supplies weren’t showing up, then arrived at the party room to discover everything was half tables…only about one foot wide! We pushed two together for all the food tables and left the congregating tables as is. We had loads of people and load of authors0529161317b-1 showing up to oggle our books and covet the impressive array of raffle prizes we gave away at the end of the night. Everyone was wonderful helping out, especially the Chrises Hiles (squared) Alf and Cynthia, Vonnie Winslow Crist, Kelly A. Harmon, Jean Marie Ward, Wrenn Simms, Vickie DiSantos and loads of other people I can’t remember now because my brain was on overload.

The party was a huge success and surprisingly we were able to donate food to the Game of Thrones party following ours. Many, many books were sold and happy authors and attendees abounded.

Back (left to right): Danny Birt, Jonah Knight, Jeff Young, Robert E. Waters, David Lee Summers, Chris Hiles, Eric Hardenbrook, Keith R.A. DeCandido, Dustin Blottenberger, Drew Bittner, Christine Norris, Ken Schrader. Front (left to right): Greg Schauer, me, Mike McPhail, Jean Marie Ward, Gail Z. Martin, and John L. French. Not pictured here: Vonnie Winslow Crist, Brigitte Winter, Kelly A. Harmon, Bud Sparhawk.


I don’t have any photos of the party, other than this one of the editors, authors and artists, but hope to share some once they are sent to me.

All in all a great time, though the added expense of parking and eating was a blow, as was the inaccessibility of places to pick up last-minute party supplies.