Here we go! I just received my schedule for Westercon 64. This should be really fun, so come and see me!
On Saturday, July 2 from 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM I'll be discussing Alien Language with Tom Digby, Daryl Frazetti, Pat MacEwen, and Dave Trowbridge. Room: Gold
This is a favorite topic of mine, as you know! Here's the description:
When we do hear from ETs, how will we interpret what they are saying? What assumptions can we safely make about common elements of language and communications? Do we want to let them know we received their message? How different could an alien language be, given that it still must communicate warnings and enable communication as human languages do?
Then from 1:00 PM to 2:30 PM I'll be alongisde Kyle Aisteach and Cliff Winnig, Reading from my own science fiction! Expect aliens... if you have any requests for works that I might read from, give them to me here on my TTYU blog. I'm listening... Room: Imperial Ballroom Reading Area
On Sunday, July 3 from 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM I'll be talking about Problems with First Contact with Tom Digby, Margaret Fisk, G. David Nordley, and Mike Sheffield. Here's the description:
Sometimes advanced aliens contact humanity, and sometimes spacefaring humans are doing the contacting. But once contact has happened, what is the moral dimension? Is it immoral to leave individuals in primitive poverty in the hope that they might one day develop their own culture? Can advanced peoples colonize a planet inhabited by primitives and live in peace with them? Room: Regency Ballroom 2
Then from 1:00 PM to 2:30 PM will be Delusions of Gender with Dany Atkins, Patricia MacEwen, and Jean Marie Stine. Sounds interesting:
From alien races with one sex or many to human androgynes, hermaphrodites, and beyond, SF has used gender and sexuality as lenses to examine human minds and cultures. Consider the single sex of Ursula K. Le Guin's The Left Hand of Darkness versus the five sexes of Melissa Scott's Shadow Man. The James Tiptree, Jr. Award anthologies also explore these possibilities. Room: Gold
On the final day, Monday, Jul 04 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM I'll be appearing with Paul Carlson, Gabrielle Harbowy, Robert Hole, and Mike Shepherd to discuss Getting the Details Right:
How hard is it to learn basic science and tech if you're a writer who skated through that part of his or her education? How can that be overcome? Does it matter? How does credible science in a story bolster the believability of the parts that are obviously fabricated? Room: Crystal
Then from 1:00 PM to 2:30 PM in room it will be Art Forms for Other Senses. With me for the discussion will be Jaym Gates, Chelsea Kalenda, and Kate Morganstern:
What sort of art would be made by species whose senses differ from our own? Imagine scent-paintings, sonic tapestries, symphonies of electromagnetic radiation, and sculptures of pressure and convection currents in a fluid medium... Room: California
Be aware that things (particularly room assignments) could change, so even I will be triple-checking on the day.
Leave requests for science fiction readings in my comments below. I'd love to see you there!