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Titan Books @ WorldCon 2019

Published on 14 August, 2019

Authored by Titan Books

Team Titan are delighted to be heading to WorldCon in Dublin this weekend and hope to see lots of you there! There are panels featuring our brilliant authors, editors and publicists, autograph sessions and kaffeeklatsches, literary beers and readings...so however you're planning to spend your time at WorldCon, we'd love to see you at any of the below! 

12.00 - 12.50pm: Christopher Husberg - Writing Robots and Non-human Intelligence (CCD, Wicklow Hall-1)

with Martha Wells (moderator), Charles Stross and Mika Koverola 

Robots talk in a metallic voice, speak in a staccato rhythm, and walk in awkward movements. Right? That may have been true in the 1950s, but robots have evolved. So what does it mean today to be a robot? How have they changed over the years and how might they change still? How do we write one in a convincing way, and can we apply these same ideas to writing other nonhuman intelligences?

2.00 - 2.50pm: A.J. Hackwith - A Portable Kind of Magic: why we love books-about-books (CCD, Liffey Room-1)  

with Genevieve Cogman (moderator), Tasha Suri and Miriam Weinberg (Tor)  

Whether it’s a library of every book ever written, a compendium of magical creatures, or a hitchhiker’s guide to the universe, we’ve always loved a good story-about-a-story. What is behind our fascination with books and libraries, and why does it translate so well to SFF? How does the history of book-making connect to our myths and legends, and what shape will our meta-stories take in the future?  

3.00 - 3.50pm: A.J. Hackwith - Kaffeeklatsch (CCD, Level 3 Foyer)

7.00 - 7.50pm: Christopher Husberg - Building an Intelligent World (moderator) (CCD, Liffey Room-1) 

with Ian Watson, Mika Koverola and Hadas Sloin  

Through AI, smart cities, meshed Internet of Things, and global connectivity, we are building an intelligent, almost sentient, world. Does this intelligent world enable or disable us? Are we reducing our need for human intelligence through reliance on such a world? Will our intelligent world eventually see humanity as we see animals: as smart creatures but limited in their mental capacity? 

11.00 - 11.20am: Charlie Jane Anders - Reading (CCD, Liffey Room-2)

11.00 - 11.50am: A.J. Hackwith - Where Words Fail, Music Speaks: literary soundtracks (CCD, ECOCEM Room) 

with Tom Toner (moderator), R.F. Kuang, Ian McDonald and Kieron Gillen

With the advent of digital music it is easier now than ever for authors to create soundtracks for their writing. Sometimes this is music that inspires the writing process, and sometimes soundtracks are published to enhance the reading experience. Our panel of authors will discuss the ways in which music affects their writing.

11.30 - 11.50am: V.E. Schwab - Reading (CCD, Liffey Room-2)

12.00 - 12.50am: Marie Brennan - Stories from Other Media Turned into Games (CCD, ECOCEM Room)

with Michael Cule (moderator), Rebecca Slitt, William C. Tracy and Keith Byrne

From the transition of ‘select-your own adventure’ books to Douglas Adams’ first computer game version of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, storytellers have been happy to entice their audience to play in their worlds through games. What are the different ways they done this? Which stories have transitioned well – and which have not?

12.00 - 12.50pm: Tim Major, Pat Cadigan & Nina Allan - When Good Futures Go Bad: dystopia as horror fiction (CCD, Wicklow Room-1)

with Prof. David Farnell (moderator) and Emil Hjörvar Petersen

It’s not just for science fiction any more! How do horror dystopias differ from those in SF, and what are some examples, old and new, that we should be reading?

12.30 - 1.20pm: Charlie Jane Anders - Guiding Star: Discussing the Lodestar Award shortlist (moderator) (Point Square, Odeon 4)

with D.A Lascelles, Dr Mary Watson, Nicole Givens Kurtz and Tasha Suri

Let’s gush about this year’s amazing list of Lodestar Award finalists! What do we love about these books? Who will win, who else would we have loved to see on the list, and what else are we looking forward to seeing from this fantastic group of authors?

  • The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton
  • Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
  • The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
  • Dread Nation by Justina Ireland
  • The Invasion by Peadar Ó Guilín
  • Tess of the Road by Rachel Hartman

2.00 - 2.50pm: V.E. Schwab & Marie Brennan - Autograph session (CCD, Level 4 Foyer)

2.30 - 3.20pm: Nina Allan - Unwritable Stories (Point Square, Stratocaster BC)

with Karen Haber, Jay Caselberg, Michael Swanwick and Jacey Bedford

Every author has that perfect story that just refuses to be written. From wilful characters to wandering narratives and gaping plot holes, our panellists share the stories that would have even defied the Greek muses themselves. What made these stories so hard to write? What traps did they hold? And whatever happened to those old untold tales? Will they ever see the light of day or will they remain locked away in a hidden drawer?

2.30 - 3.20pm: Tim Major - Hammer Horror (Point Square, Odeon 3)

with Genevieve Cogman (moderator), The John Vaughan, Helena Nash and Mr Grzegorz Aleksander Biały

Terry Pratchett, Guillermo del Toro and writers of Doctor Who (during the Tom Baker period) have all evinced admiration and inspiration from a set of horror flicks produced by a long dormant British film producer Hammer Horror Films from the 1950s and 1960s. Our panellists look at what makes them so enamoured of their productions.

3.00 - 3.50pm: Charlie Jane Anders - YA Futures (CCD, Wicklow Room-1)

with Eric Picholle (moderator), James Smythe, Fonda Lee and Dr Kristina Perez

From dystopias to utopias, science fiction to space opera, how do we imagine and create the future in YA books? How have visions of the future in YA changed over time? And is the final frontier in YA in deep space, or here on Earth?

4.00 - 4.50pm: Cat Camacho (Titan Editor) - The Return of the Space Cowboy (CCD, Wicklow Room-1)

with Ariela Housman (moderator), Edgar Governo and David Towsey

The influence of the Western on science fiction can be traced from the pulp era; it ranges from the subtle inclusion of tropes like the lawless frontiers of Star Trek and The Expanse, through cowboy imagery in Afro Samurai to literal horses in Firefly. The panel will discuss their favourite examples of space Westerns in media and literature, and why the genre has had such a lasting appeal.

4.00 - 4.50pm: A.J. Hackwith - Autograph session (CCD, Level 4 Foyer)

5.00 - 5.50pm: Charlie Jane Anders - Autograph session (CCD, Level 4 Foyer)

8.00 - 8.50pm: Charlie Jane Anders - Literary Beer (CCD, Liffey-A)

8.30 - 8.50pm: Gareth L. Powell - Reading (CCD, Liffey Room-3)

From 6.30pm: The Titan Witching Hour Party (The Harbourmaster)

10.00 - 10.50am: V.E. Schwab - Gender and Sexuality in YA (CCD, ECOCEM Room)

with Sam Bradbury (moderator), Diana M. Pho, Rei Rosenquist and Rachel Hartman

Young adulthood is a formative time in many ways, but especially when it comes to gender and sexuality. Both topics have been increasing in interest and importance in YA books. How do our books reflect explorations of identity? Why is it important that they do so? Has this changed over time? And how can we approach these topics respectfully – and with an eye on intersectionality?

11.00 - 11.50am: Tim Major - Rural Pagans, Haunted Forest: Folk horror revival (moderator) (CCD, Liffey Hall-2)

with Ramsey Campbell, Lisa Tuttle and Neil Williamson

With its roots in folklore and rural life, ‘folk horror’ has enjoyed a huge resurgence in the last few years. What is folk horror, and why is it suddenly so popular? Is it nostalgia-based, or are there new anxieties at work that have driven its rise?

11.00 - 11.50am: Gareth L. Powell - Patreon: the evolution of supporting the arts (CCD, Wicklow Hall-2A)

with Jaine Fenn (moderator), Nicolette Stewart and Legendgerry

Serialised fiction, topical articles, featured interviews, and more! Patreon provides a new way for authors to generate income and for fans to support creators. But what is Patreon? How does it work and can you really make money? What expectations do people bring with them? And is there a dark side to publishing on the platform? Who owns the published material, and what part does copyright play?

1.30 - 1.50pm: Marie Brennan - Reading (CCD, Liffey Room-3)

2.00 - 2.50pm: Charlie Jane Anders - Dystopian SF: how utopias go wrong (CCD, Wicklow Hall-2B)

with Su J. Sokol (moderator), Anne Charnock, Tom Toner and K.M. Szpara 

In SF there is no such thing as a utopia. Or, at least, anything that seems on the surface to be a utopia usually isn’t for everyone. The panel will discuss the concept of utopias and whether there can be one that isn’t ultimately harmful for some aspect of society, giving examples from a range of SF sources. How can the ideals of a perfect world be twisted into something dark and dystopian?

3.00 - 3.50pm: George Sandison (Titan Editor) and Nina Allan - What I Learned Along the Way (CCD, Wicklow Room-3)

with Ian R MacLeod (moderator), Aliette de Bodard and Karl Schroeder

Writing is a many wondrous thing filled with highs and lows, but those lows can be really tough to navigate either after a great success or after a lack of success. Rejection is something every writer has to face, but how do writers keep writing in the face of failure? What lessons have they learned along the way? Our panellists share the ups and downs of a writing life.

3.30 - 4.20pm: V.E. Schwab - Graphic Novel Adaptations of Genre Work (Point Square, Odeon 2)

with Holly Black (moderator), Gail Carriger and Raya Golden

Is there such a thing as a good adaptation of a pure prose text? While some people argue that movies can never live up to the reader’s imagination, graphic novels have fewer limits and can add a significant visual element to our favourite genre literature. But they still might not look ‘right’, and a picture might not always be worth losing a thousand words. Join us to consider the challenges!

4.30 - 5.20pm: M.T. Hill - Blurred Media (Point Square, Odeon 5)

with Stark Holborn (moderator), Ben Galley, Kat Kourbeti and Michael Cassutt

As films, television, books, comics, and games intermingle across channels, both in terms of content and production, how is this influencing the approaches and the skills involved in their creation?

5.00 - 5.50pm: Charlie Jane Anders - Winter Came (CCD, Wicklow Room-4)

with Laura Antoniou (moderator), Marina Berlin, Mr Adam Whitehead and Linda Antonsson

It’s over. Let’s talk about how it ended: what worked, what didn’t, and what the legacy and influence of Game of Thrones is likely to be.

5.30 - 6.30pm: Tim Major - NewCon Press Book Launch (Point Square, Warehouse 2 - Performance space)

Best of British SF 2018 (anthology), Once Upon a Parsec (anthology), The Boughs Withered by Maura McHugh, Wourism and Other Stories by Ian Whates. Many authors including Adrian Tchaikovsky, Maura McHugh, G. V. Anderson, Tim Major, Fiona Moore, Neil Williamson, Finbarr O’Reilly and Ian Whates on hand to sign books. All welcome. We will be serving light refreshments.

7.00 - 7.50pm: V.E. Schwab - Literary Beer (CCD, Liffey-A)

8.00 - 8.50pm: Gareth L. Powell - Authors and Social Media: friends or foes? (CCD, Wicklow Hall-1)

with Francesca T Barbini (moderator), Georgina Kamsika and Amal El-Mohtar

Join us as we explore the good, the bad, and the ugly of the relationship between authors and social media. Where should you be? What should you do? And how much is too much? From Twitter to Facebook, via Instagram: how to make social media work for you and avoid digging your own digital grave in the process.

8.30 - 8.50pm: Nina Allan - Reading (CCD, Liffey Room-3)

9.00 - 9.50pm: Charlie Jane Anders - Panel Show: 'That Was Unexpected!' (CCD, Wicklow Hall 2B)

with Brandon O'Brien (moderator), Catherynne Valente, Rafeeat Aliyu and Joe Abercrombie

Ever wanted to know what your favourite fantasy novelist would do if they were suddenly turned into a witch’s familiar? Or how a popular sci-fi writer would communicate with an alien race that only speaks in bad puns? Watch a team of esteemed writers talk their way out of the kinds of problems they’re accustomed to writing their characters out of, and some that they would never have imagined.

22.00 - 23.30: Sarah Maria Griffin - Down Below the Reservoir (play) (CCD, Liffey-B)

Dave Rudden, Deirdre Sullivan, Graham Tugwell and Mr Bryan Mullen

Down Below the Reservoir presents: ‘A Dance in the Dark’. There is no God. Love is impossible. Everyone drinks the water here.Down Below the Reservoir, Ireland’s first horror fiction podcast, is adapted from the works of acclaimed horror writer Graham Tugwell and voiced by award-winning YA authors Dave Rudden, Sarah Maria Griffin, and Deirdre Sullivan. Join them for a very special event: a live performance where the audience is in control and the authors are at your mercy. You choose their actions, as their characters attempt to navigate what was supposed to be a celebration, what was supposed to be the best night of their lives…

10.00 – 10.50am: Marie Brennan - The Bare Bones of Worldbuilding: archaeology in SFF (CCD: Wicklow Hall 2B)

with Ehud Maimon (moderator), Dr Katrin Kania and Alyc Helms

Whether it’s an actual archaeological dig looking for evidence of alien civilisations or fantasy characters camping in the ruins of their ancestors, archaeological evidence and research can be used to help develop a world beyond the here and now and add complex layers to a story without the need for exposition. The panel will discuss the ways in which archaeology has been used to deepen SFF worldbuilding and storytelling.

11.00 – 11.00am: George Sandison (Titan Editor) – Kaffeeklatsch (CCD: Level 3 Foyer)

11.00 – 11.50am: Lydia Gittins (Titan Publicist) - Social Media: marketing tips and tools (CCD: Wicklow Hall-1)

with Brenda Noiseux (moderator), Stevie Finegan and Pablo Defendini

Social media has become a way of life for many people in the 21st century, and it can be a tricky business. With quick and easy access to current fans as well as to new potential readers, how can an author or creator use social media to further their career? Our social media experts share savvy marketing tips, as well as pitfalls to avoid, when using their social networks.

11.00 -11.50am: A.J. Hackwith – Human Reproduction and Childbirth in SFF (CCD: Wicklow Room-1)

with D Franklin (moderator), Anne Charnock, Beth Meacham and Jeannette Ng

Authors of SFF have often explored the political, social, biological, and technological consequences of pregnancy and reproduction. In the last century, developments in assisted reproduction and childbirth have changed the boundaries of the possible. The panel will consider the ways in which SFF depicts human reproduction and childbirth, from high tech futures to medieval fantasies.

11.00 – 11.50am: Marie Brennan – Kaffeeklatsch (CCD: Level 3 Foyer)

12.00 – 12.50pm: Gareth L. Powell – Autograph session (CCD: Level 4 Foyer)

1.00 – 1.50pm: George Sandison (Titan Editor) - Getting Published and Staying Published (CCD: ECOCEM Room)

with E. C. Ambrose (moderator), Patrick Nielsen Hayden, Michelle Sagara and Rachel Winterbottom

You have a two-book deal with a mainstream publisher. Huzzah! But, after those two books, what happens next – not just immediately, but across years? Panellists share their experiences and expectations, offering advice and notes on what they wish they had known.

1.00 – 1.50pm: Christopher Husberg (moderator) - Wands at the ready! Magical Worldbuilding in SFF (CCD: Wicklow Hall-1)

with Zen Cho, Diane Duane and Justin Call

When worldbuilding with magic, is it enough to add magic to our existing social structures, or does some magic alter the way the world works? There are soft magic systems with few rules and hard magic systems with lots of rules; does this affect the ways magic shapes the narrative? Arthur C. Clarke said: ‘Magic is just science we don’t understand yet.’ At what point does magic become science?

1.30 – 2.20pm: Lydia Gittins (Titan Publicist) - Marketing and Promotion: the writer’s website (moderator) (Point Square: Alhambra)

with David Demchuk, Sara-Jayne Slack and Ben Galley

When people think about marketing and promotion for creators of any kind, it’s usually social media that comes to mind. Websites are often overlooked, overly complicated, or out-of-date. This panel isn’t about web design, but rather about the kinds of things that a writer should include on their website, things that are helpful and nice, and other things that should just never, ever, be done.

10.00 – 10.50am: V.E. Schwab - Fanworks in YA (CCD: Wicklow Hall 2B)

with Kathy Bond (moderator), Victoria Lee, fromankyra

Fanfic, fanart, cosplay, and more: how do YA fans engage with their favourite works? How do YA fans engage in fan culture? And is there a distinctly ‘YA’ fan culture?

12.00 – 12.50pm: Marie Brennan - Dragons, wyrms, and serpents: why the myth endures (CCD: Wicklow Hall 2A)

with Karen Simpson Nikakis (moderator), Aliette de Bodard, Naomi Novik and Joey Yu

There are a lot of mythical beasts that can and do feature in fantasy, but the dragon/wyrm/serpent seems to be one of the most popular. What are the reasons for this enduring popularity? What roles does it perform? What mythic properties does it embody and why do these continue to resonate (if they do)?


Phew! That's all folks, think we'll need a sit down after that!