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Eastercon / Orbital 2008

China Miéville
China Miéville

On Saturday, I went to:
The Use of Mythology in Fantasy - "New interpretations and retellings of mythology in fantasy novels abound. What attracts authors to this material and what responsibility do they have to the source material? Nic Clarke, Neil Gaiman, Maura McHugh, Sarah Singleton, Liz Williams."

Guest of Honour: China Miéville - " "For God's Sake It's Just a Story! A Reader's Guide to Ruining SF." A talk and debate."

Fantastic London - "From Dickens to Iain Sinclair, London is one of the most imagined cities in the world. Why is that, and what does fantastic imagination add? Neil Gaiman, Geoff Ryman, Louis Savy, Graham Sleight."

Religion in SF - "Fatima Ahad, Chaz Brenchley, Kim Lakin-Smith, Tony Lee, Rita Medany."

The Fall of Night 451 - "Utopia implies central control and repression - is this a good thing? Is it always impled? Edward James, James Lovegrove, Adam Roberts, Justina Robson, Tom Womack."

On Sunday, I went to:
Guest of Honor: Neil Gaiman - "Neil Gaiman is involved in many areas. Books, comics, films, music.. but is he as entertaining and thought provoking in real life? Yes, of course he is! Bound to be one of the highlights of the convention, this is his GoH spot."

Writing the Near Future - "Why is it harder to predict 50 years in the future than 500? What do you do when events overtake your novel? Who gets it right and are we all predicting the same future? Matt Browne, Paul McAuley, Patrick Nielsen Hayden, Justina Robson, Charles Stross."

Myth, History and Dream: Sandman - "Greece and Rome in the Sandman. Tony Keen."

The Appeal of Lovecraft - "What is it about Lovecraft and his mythos that makes it so enduring and used by so many authors? Roz Kaveney, China Miéville, Charles Stross, Thomas Olde Heuvelt."

Don't Cross the Streams - "Where does science fiction end and fantasy begin? Where do you place books which treat fantasy elements with a science fiction sensibility? Is telepathy science fiction, or fantasy? Dave Clements, Colin Harvey, China Miéville, Graham Sleight, Peter Weston."

Disco - Dark Fantasy - "The second disco of the weekend has the theme dark fantasy, just to give you an excuse to wear black. With DJ Marwan."

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Haha I can't help see the Guest of Honor spot as "If we give him a whole hour to talk about how amazing and well-loved he is, maybe we'll be able to get a word in edgewise on the other panels"

(sorry, that's Sunday's - I have no idea what Mr Mieville is like in person)

Mr Miéville is great in person!

I'm very glad to hear that, he's kind of one of the few people I really believe in.

Dammit. Was everyone at Eastercon except for me?

Lovecraft himself wasn't.

Next time I'm staying for the whole con, I missed so many wonderful panels by zipping off on Saturday morning!

Yes, you should definitely have stayed for longer!

Hey, I didn't know you were at Eastercon! Although I attended some of the same panels, they were the ones in Commonwealth, so it was hard to see who was there.

Ah, I thought I saw your name on the programme. :) Hope your talks went well!

That looks awesome... did you take any notes to share?

My notes mostly seem to consist of "Dave McKean goes to a shop in New York to buy butterflies and skeletons". Maybe I should try to remember what else was said!

Best stand-up routine ever!

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