Nebula Conference 2022 Online

May 01, 2022

May 08, 2022

May 15, 2022

Narrative Worlds: Old Bottles/New Wine: Repurposing and Reinvigorating Worn Genre Tropes and Archetypes (Webinar)

May 15, 2022 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm

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Narrative Worlds is a monthly discussion between Kate Elliott and a guest, looking into a specific single worldbuilding topic in depth.

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May 20, 2022

Writing Through the Pain

May 20, 2022 9:00 am to 10:00 am

Living with chronic disease or pain can consume your thoughts, but writing can be a lifeline. Join your fellow authors as we share experiences, struggles, and victories as writers living with chronic pain.

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Writing Neurodivergent Stories

May 20, 2022 10:30 am to 11:30 am

This discussion will explore what it’s like to write fiction as a neurodivergent author, examples of effective representation, and how neurodivergent stories can differ more traditional forms of storytelling.

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Fighting and Writing

May 20, 2022 10:30 am to 11:30 am

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Readers across the SFF subgenres expect gripping combat scenes, but how do writers balance the details and description with unforgettable action? Join experienced martial arts and combat weapon professionals for informed advice on writing realistic fight scenes.

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The Speculative-Literary Connection: Writing and Publishing Across Markets

May 20, 2022 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm

What is the benefit of reading, submitting to, and publishing in literary markets as a speculative writer and vice versa? What are some markets that are blending genres? What are some popular ways to incorporate weirdness into literary writing? When is a story too speculative or not speculative enough? In this panel, cross-genre writers and editors will address these questions and more!

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The Appeal of Alternate History and Historical Fantasy

May 20, 2022 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm

Why are so many writers and readers drawn to alternate history as a means of creating new dimensions in reality? What do our historical thought experiments say about our relationship with our past? Join us to discuss how we interact with our history and the distance by which we can understand it.

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Tools for Revising Novelists

May 20, 2022 1:30 pm to 2:30 pm

Few of us produce perfect first drafts. How does one go about revising a novel-length project? Our panelists share the tools and techniques in their kits for turning a rough draft into a polished, cohesive work.

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The Future of Disability Representation

May 20, 2022 3:00 pm to 4:00 pm

Writers with disabilities prop up excellent examples of representation, discuss how to overcome harmful tropes and stereotypes, and explore, the good, the bad, the ugly, and the future of portraying disability in SFF.

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System Failure: How Afro-Futurism, Fantasy, and Horror Help Us REIMAGINE Society

May 20, 2022 3:00 pm to 4:00 pm

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This panel will bring together speculative fiction writers who use their craft to illustrate how public systems (the school, prison, and healthcare systems) have failed BIPOC and poor people, and brilliantly reimagine what living in a people-centered society could look like.

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The Challenge of Writing with ADD

May 20, 2022 7:30 pm to 8:30 pm

Panelists: Luke Elliott, Arkady Martine, Vida Cruz and Robin Rowland (moderator)

No matter your age or experience, writers with ADD face unique challenges in creating and completing a project. Authors with lived experience discuss the challenges and triumphs in their careers.

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Comics and the Craft of Storytelling

May 20, 2022 7:30 pm to 8:30 pm

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When do you need a picture, and when do you need a thousand words—and when do you need both? How have comics shaped popular narrative themes and readers’ habits? Join us as artists and writers discuss how sequential art elevates storytelling.

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Publishing Short Stories and Collections

May 20, 2022 9:00 pm to 10:00 pm

Panelists: Wole Talabi, Vida Cruz, T. R. Napper, Mari Ness and Eugen Bacon (moderator)

It starts with one story, but want to revisit the world, or you aren’t finished exploring this them. Once you’ve built a collection, how do you approach publication when most short stories are accepted one at a time? This panel talks about the business of traditionally publishing short story collections, from writers who have done so.

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How to Borrow from Sister Horror

May 20, 2022 9:00 pm to 10:00 pm

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Fantasy and Science Fiction have always drawn elements from their sister genre Horror, from the zombie-like White Walkers of George R.R. Martin’s A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE to the psychological horror in space of S.A. Barnes’s DEAD SILENCE. This panel would explore this dark mix of genres, including how to write it and providing great examples for everyone’s reading lists.

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May 21, 2022

Indie Publishing for LGBTQ+ Authors

May 21, 2022 6:00 am to 7:00 am

Indie publishing is a new frontier for many authors, but what does breaking into this space look like for members of the LGBTQ+ community? Join us for a discussion of ideas, advice, and the personal experiences of independently published queer authors.

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Writing a Series that Delivers and Delivers

May 21, 2022 6:00 am to 7:00 am

When the writing is strong, the world building is interesting, and the characters are compelling, readers want more. They want to spend time with the same characters on new journeys without losing the wonder which first drew them in. Authors discuss how to maintain consistent publishing schedules while meeting, maintaining, and set new expectations with their readers.

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Bring Back the Novella!

May 21, 2022 7:30 am to 8:30 am

Today’s readers actually love a shorter read! And novellas are most easily translated to movies. Then why are novellas pushed to the back of publishing house lists, and relegated to the sidelines with minimum distribution? These novella writers and publishers reflect on what could be a booming business and what writers may consider going forward.

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Getting the Most out of a Writers Group

May 21, 2022 7:30 am to 8:30 am

How do you find and build community as a writer? When is feedback helpful, and when is it toxic? This panel will explore how to form and maintain connections with other writers, and how to share, critique, and champion each others work.

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Narrative Design In Games

May 21, 2022 9:00 am to 10:00 am

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Narrative design is often misunderstood as being a synonym for game writing, but good narrative design combines the tools of storytelling, game design, and narrative strategy to help bring a game to life. This panel brings together narrative designers to talk about the ways that narrative systems deliver, shape, and change storytelling – and how their own work in this field has evolved and grown over time.

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Paths to Success as an Indie Author

May 21, 2022 9:00 am to 10:00 am

Panelists: Tim Fielder, Tracy Cooper-Posey, Mark Coker and R. K. Thorne (moderator)

When authors decide to take the indie publishing route, they assume responsibility for dozens of creative and strategic decisions. Who should be your editor? Your cover designer? What is your marketing and business strategy? Join us to explore how you to plot your own course to success when you are making the major publishing decisions.

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Unlikeable Narrators Aren’t Inherently Bad

May 21, 2022 10:30 am to 11:30 am

Should readers like every character? What about every narrator or protagonist? In this panel, authors who have written unlikable narrators will discuss how the unsympathetic and unappealing nature of their characters serve their narrative.

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Underserved Market for a Mature Protagonist

May 21, 2022 10:30 am to 11:30 am

With 21.45% of the US population falling into the Baby Boomer category (with another 19.71% being Gen X), readers are increasingly looking for more mature characters in books and movies. Some writers are meeting the demand with heros in their 40s and 50s, but can we go further? Faster? Older? What are the pitfalls and limitations of writing characters beyond the traditionally accepted age groups in SF/F? Better yet, what is the potential?

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Shifting Sands: Balancing Freelance with a Paycheck

May 21, 2022 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm

While going freelance is often the dreamed-of goal, not everyone who goes there likes it. Many creatives shift back-and-forth between full-time freelance and having a paycheck job. How do you know when it’s time to shift? Without a traditional resume, HOW do you shift?

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Media Tie-In Writing

May 21, 2022 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm

What is the difference between writing in your own world and writing in someone else’s world? What are the pitfalls to avoid? How do you make sure you get the characters right? Where can you stretch your literary legs and where do you need to hold back? And how do you get the IP owners to choose you to write for them?

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Growing up Magical: How Magic Can Be Used To Explore Identity in MG and YA

May 21, 2022 1:30 pm to 2:30 pm

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Magic is often an important part of fantasy worlds, but magic can also play a pivotal part in the character development of those people who encounter it. In MG and YA fantasy, where character arcs often represent characters coming into their own, magic can be a useful tool to explore aspects of each characters’ identities and to help them along on their character arcs. In this panel, debut MG and YA authors discuss the role of magic in a young protagonist’s character arc, how they have intertwined their world’s magic in with their character’s journeys, and how other writers can do the same.

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Writing and Parenting: How to Make It Work

May 21, 2022 3:00 pm to 4:00 pm

Panelists: Judy I. Lin, Beth Dawkins, Ruthanna Emrys and Amanda Helms (moderator)

Writing while parenting has never been simple, and the pandemic context had only served to complicate the task. Join us for a discussion on how to manage caring for a family and balancing creative endeavors.

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May 22, 2022

Major Mistakes in a Writing Career

May 22, 2022 6:00 am to 7:00 am

A panel of experienced writers will discuss mistakes in their writing careers, moments of imperfection, and a few things they wish they’d done differently. Join this conversation for humorous anecdotes and advice on how to avoid the these same pitfalls.

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Hybrid Publishing: Choice or Necessity?

May 22, 2022 6:00 am to 7:00 am

Many writers turn to self-publishing to supplement their income. But self-publishing brings a set of unique challenges. How can authors determine whether a hybrid career is the best option?

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Writers with Day Jobs: Is This How We Lose the Time War?

May 22, 2022 7:30 am to 8:30 am

The publishing industry disadvantages authors who struggle with sparse free time and income insecurity. Experienced authors discuss how to manage limited resources, discover new options, and build support systems.

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Every Little Thing They Do Is Magic: Latinx Writers Talk Fantasy and Realism

May 22, 2022 9:00 am to 10:00 am

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Latinx writers still write under the shadow of Magical Realism–and not even the original conception of it, but a kind of generic, watered-down, and frankly, appropriated version of it. But all of you write exciting, extra-real stories that blend blatant fantasy with characters and situations that speak to the Latinx experience in authentic and useful ways. How is that thing done?

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Flash: More Story, Fewer Words!

May 22, 2022 9:00 am to 10:00 am

Flash fiction can be funny, quirky, and deeply moving, but it’s a challenging form that requires its own skill set. What makes flash different from longer short stories? In this panel, several flash writers will share their tools and tricks for creating stunning stories under 1000 words.

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The Second Person and You

May 22, 2022 10:30 am to 11:30 am

The second person is often regarded as difficult, complex, or experimental. But it doesn’t need to be! Explore how your work could benefit from this technique with authors who have intentionally and successfully written from this perspective.

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Dealing With Trauma Through Fiction

May 22, 2022 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm

Speculative Fiction can be a way of escape for both the writer and the reader. What are ways that trauma shows up in fiction? How does it translate to the page? How do we approach out own trauma when developing stories versus how do we approach writing about trauma that isn’t our lived experience? Authors from various backgrounds and perspectives discuss how to create a safe space to process trauma through storytelling.

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The Written and Unwritten Rules of Middle Grade

May 22, 2022 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm

Writing for kids comes with a lot of unwritten rules, beyond just to take out the swearing and the sex. This panel will go over some of the things authors were surprised to learn was different in writing for middle grade than writing for an adult or YA audience.

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Worldbuilding in Short Stories

May 22, 2022 1:30 pm to 2:30 pm

Worldbuilding is challenging for any writer, but building a new world in a small space is its own feat. This panel will include writers of short stories and short story collections to discuss how they accomplish quick and effective worldbuilding.

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Intro to Critiquing Game Writing

May 22, 2022 1:30 pm to 2:30 pm

As SFWA welcomes and integrates game writers into the membership, non-game writers have the opportunity to acquire critical tools for evaluating the work of their games writing colleagues to better equip themselves when voting for the Nebulas or expanding into games themselves. This panel will introduce important concepts and tools for evaluating game writing.

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Living Overseas and Publishing in the US and CA

May 22, 2022 3:00 pm to 4:00 pm

When many popular traditional publishers have New York or otherwise North American roots, “breaking in” from elsewhere in the world can be difficult. In this panel, writers living beyond the US and Canada discuss their publishing experiences.

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Finding the Right Literary Agent & Maintaining Your Sanity Along the Way

May 22, 2022 3:00 pm to 4:00 pm

For writers seeking traditional publication the right agent is key. We cover practical querying techniques, time management tactics, and when to call in your support triangle. We cover mindset issues that crop up as you submit to the slush piles, and help you focus on finding the right long-term business partner/agent. This isn’t a class about query letters, or polishing your first five pages. This is a class about navigating the slush piles from a place of empowerment. Walk away with a list of agent author interview questions and more.

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Getting It Done On Time

May 22, 2022 4:30 pm to 5:30 pm

You’ve sold the book and now they want another—by a certain day. Join us to learn how other mid-career authors acclimated to deadlines, balanced schedules, and got the book done on time—or managed when the deadline slipped.

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Collaborative Writing: How to Share Your Brainspace

May 22, 2022 4:30 pm to 5:30 pm

Panelists: Rob Hart, Adam Stemple, Jonathan Brazee and Sienna Tristen (moderator)

What happens when an idea forms between two (or more!) authors? How do you share ideas, build consensus, and manage drafts and revisions? Join us to explore how collaborative writing relationships work and how to build them.

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Writing in a Shared World

May 22, 2022 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm

It’s your book, but it’s their world. How do you follow the rules of the literary universe and still contribute in a creatively fulfilling way? People hosting and writing in shared worlds talk about their experiences and give advice for those wanting to join an established property.

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Promotion for Introverts

May 22, 2022 7:30 pm to 8:30 pm

You’ve got the contract! Your book is coming out! Congrats. Now, you have to promote it. Truth is, even the “big” houses require writers to do much of the marketing footwork themselves, and there’s lots of info on what to do and when. But, for us introverts, the shy, and the neurodiverse, stumping our own work is, at best, a source of fraught ambivalence, and, at worst, a gauntlet of terror. There are ways to push through, though. Come hear from other introverts who’ve made it through marketing in one piece, more or less.

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The Value of Versatility

May 22, 2022 7:30 pm to 8:30 pm

Some agents, editors, and publishers advise authors to develop a brand. This branding sets the expectation that an author will stick to one genre, one style, or one format. But there’s a value to being versatile, too. This panel will discuss how and why authors should make and break their own mold.

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Live Readings: So, You’ve Been Asked to Read Your Work in Front of Actual Humans…

May 22, 2022 9:00 pm to 10:00 pm

Invited to an event to give a live reading of your work? Professional narrators are here to help with tips and tricks to win over your audience, combat the nerves, prepare for your reading.

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Leveling up: Strategies to Grow as a Writer

May 22, 2022 9:00 pm to 10:00 pm

There’s no video game-style announcement to tell us when we’ve leveled up our writing skills. Sometimes it’s hard to know if you’re improving at all–especially when you’re just starting out. We’ll discuss ways that our panelists have leveled up their own skills, from formal workshops to writing groups to exercises and beyond.

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