Those responsible for the NY Comic Con asked several of us here at Unbound Worlds if we’d be interested in moderating a panel or two. The one thrown my way was the Author Round Table: Sci-fi / Supernatural / Fantasy Authors Gather To Talk Influences. I knew half of the writers already and the other half I had been wanting to meet for some time. It made sense to accept—despite having never moderated before and being scared to death of it.
I did say “yes” though. After all, Frank Herbert said it best:
“I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear.”
So I went. And had a great time!
The authors of the Round Table who helped make it work were: John Birmingham, Peter V. Brett, Alex Irvine, Jeff Somers, Kim Harrison, S.C. Butler, Tamora Pierce, Vicki Pettersson, Carrie Vaughn and Jackie Kessler.
“Wow!” you say exasperated. “That’s a huge panel!”
“Yes,” I say with a sigh. “Huge.”
This was easily one of the harder things I’ve had to do—and I’ve survived cancer so that gives you some idea! The participants were great and if not for them it wouldn’t have gone as well as it did, but the amount of people on the panel really made this a difficult one to navigate through. Most panels are between 3-5 people usually. I had double that with 10. My instincts kept wanting me to start a real discussion, throw some gasoline on the fire and see what happens, but a discussion like that we simply didn’t have the time to do properly.
In the end, however, this panel worked and was a huge success. The seats were full, people were standing around the walls, and the authors all mostly behaved themselves. Afterward numerous people from the audience came up to say thank you. The panel was more amusing than I thought it would be and I learned some things about those authors I probably wish I could forget! Ha!
And as Tammy Pierce wrote me a few days after the event:
“You did a great job, wrangling a panel with so many authors and still managing to get questions in at the end! I had a great time, and wanted to say so in person.”
She made my day. Watch the 2009 NY Comic Con Author Round Table!
Part I of VII:
For the rest of the hour long panel with these fine authors, continue onward and watch the other six parts!
Part II of VII:
Part III of VII:
Part IV of VII:
Part V of VII:
Part VI of VII:
Part VII of VII / The Q&A: