ConFusion is this weekend and a whole swarm of robots will be around and about taking part in panels, readings, cookie making classes and of course, parties.

Take a look below for the most up-to-date list of author appearances. As always, programmes are subject to change.

We hope to see you there!

WesleyChuFINAL-9559 copyWesley Chu

Friday
6:00 PM – Ballroom A&B
SFF Debates 2016!
Six of your favorite SFF personalities debate the issues of our time in this live debate, moderated by Robert Jackson Bennett.

Diana Rowland, John Scalzi, Wesley Chu, Delilah S. Dawson, Robert Jackson Bennett, Mark Oshiro, Brent Weeks

9:00 PM – Charlevoix
Party with Angry Robots!

Saturday 

4:00 PM – Ballroom A&B
Interview: Cameron McClure
Agent extraordinaire and Subterranean Special Guest, Cameron McClure is interviewed by science fiction author, Wesley Chu.

Wesley Chu (M), Cameron McClure

6:00 PM – Manitou
Cover Art: The Good, the Bad, and the WTF

No genre places more emphasis on stunning cover art than science fiction and fantasy. It often goes right, but not always. With powerful visual projection, the panelists will observe a series of good, bad, and WTF covers from science fiction and fantasy, provide commentary, both in praise and… not.

Jim C. Hines, Susan Dennard, Wesley Chu, Justin Landon (M), Megan E. O’Keefe

Sunday

10:00 AM – Isle Royale
Singularity for the Rest of Us
Is post-humanism really as straight, white, and Western as it often seems? How can science fiction talk about post-body identities without diminishing or dismissing embodied identity and experience? This panel will discuss the stories out there that complicate the uploaded experience.

Wesley Chu, Jason Sanford, Tom Doyle (M), Andrea Phillips, Cameron McClure

A doodle of The Author, Kameron HurleyKameron Hurley

Friday

9:00 PM – Charlevoix
Party with Angry Robots!

Saturday

10:00 AM – Leelanau
The Fiction of Political SFF

Most “political” science fiction doesn’t really deal with politics, it deals with the setting out of ideologies. In other words, it tells stories that have little to do with running a government. The result is a debate of ideas where the political is described by greed and corruption, but never the merely bureaucratic. Why are these tropes recycled time and again? How can politics be approached in a more authentic way and remain interesting to readers?

Kameron Hurley, Patrick Tomlinson, Justin Landon (M), Amal El-Mohtar, Max Gladstone

12:00 NOON -Petoskey
Lionizing the Status Quo
Genre novels are often about restoring the status quo. Repel the aliens! Defeat the Dark One! Frodo just wants to go back to the Shire and get high. How have these kinds of narratives impacted the way we relate to the world? Should we be more concerned with narratives that do the opposite and seek to overturn the traditional order of the world?

Elizabeth Shack, Douglas Hulick, Ferrett Steinmetz (M), Kameron Hurley, Brigid Collins

4:00 PM – St. Clair
Autograph Session: One

Kelley Armstrong, Ann Leckie, Scott H. Andrews, Robert Jackson Bennett, Aimee Carter, Brigid Collins, Delilah S. Dawson, Susan Dennard, Max Gladstone, Jim C. Hines, Kameron Hurley, Marko Kloos, Stina Leicht, Megan E. O’Keefe, Melissa F. Olson, Diana Rowland, Sunil, Kentaro Toyama

6:00 PM – Leelanau
It’s the Economy Stupid
National economies are complicated. Far more complicated than Dark Lords and Evil Queens. Nevertheless, books like James SA Corey’s The Expanse series and Katherine Addison’s The Goblin Emperor manage to use economic pressures to create compelling motivations and narrative tension. What are the essential parts for a story built around economics? What’s appealing about these kinds of stories and do the resonate more today than they did a decade ago?

Carl Engle-Laird (M), Max Gladstone, Kameron Hurley, Ann Leckie, Brent Weeks

7:00 PM – Keweenaw
Colonialism and Post-Colonialism
Novels of invasion and colonization often end with the glorious liberation. But what happens next? How deep does the impact of colonization go–culturally, politically, economically, socially–and how long does it really take to recover from its consequences? In what ways is the colonizer, too, changed by the experience? In a larger sense, are science fiction and fantasy beginning to repudiate colonialist narratives?

Stina Leicht, Kameron Hurley, Tobias S. Buckell (M), DongWon Song, Matt Pearson

Sunday

12 NOON – Incterlochen
The Business of Rejection
Writing is a business built around rejection. Almost every writer in the industry has experienced it at some point, and many experience it constantly. Come learn how working writers deal with rejection, move past it, and embrace it for what it is.

Amy Sundberg, Kameron Hurley, Greg van Eekhout, Gwenda Bond, Dave Robison (M)

Angry Robot Author Megan O'Keefe

Megan E O’Keefe

Friday

9:00 PM – Keweenaw
Who Threw Away My Monster Compendium?
When was the last time a zeitgeist novel had a bugbear or a cockatrice? How long is it since someone fought a giant, flesh-eating beast instead of pikeman? Where did all the monsters go? With quest plots out of fashion, deus ex machina ditched, treasure-hunting too economically dull, and stories about ethics, is the monster still relevant in today’s fiction?

Douglas Hulick, Devi Pillai, Sam Sykes (M), Marko Kloos, Megan E. O’Keefe

10:00 PM – Charlevoix
Party with Angry Robots!

Saturday

10:00 AM – Saugatuck
The Business of Art and the Business of Craft
Artists and craftsmen talk about finding outlets for selling their wares – stores, online, fairs, cons. How do you become known and develop a following?

Matt Feazell, Jen Talley, Megan E. O’Keefe, Michael Kucharski (M)

11:00 AM – Leelanau
So grim. Much serious. Wow.
Humor and light-hearted adventures have a storied history in science fiction and fantasy. Yet it seems modern work is focused on the darker elements of story telling. Is genre too po-faced outside the work of certain specifically ‘comedy’ writers? Why do so many writers steer clear of overt fun?

Cameron McClure, Megan E. O’Keefe, Bradley P. Beaulieu, Jim C. Hines (M), Sam Sykes

2:00 PM – Keweenaw
Seeing the World Through Different Eyes
Fiction should imagine the entire breadth of human experience. Too often though, it only embraces neurotypical characters. Not every brain works the same. What is neurodiversity? How does it impact story? Who’s doing it well?

Megan E. O’Keefe, Adam Rakunas, Lawrence Schoen, Mari Brighe (M), Stina Leicht

3:00 PM – ConSuite
Galaxy Cookie Decorating

Hands-on workshop to create fantastic galaxy designs on sugar cookies. And then eat them!

Megan E. O’Keefe

4:00 PM – St. Clair
Autograph Session: One

Kelley Armstrong, Ann Leckie, Scott H. Andrews, Robert Jackson Bennett, Aimee Carter, Brigid Collins, Delilah S. Dawson, Susan Dennard, Max Gladstone, Jim C. Hines, Kameron Hurley, Marko Kloos, Stina Leicht, Megan E. O’Keefe, Melissa F. Olson, Diana Rowland, Sunil, Kentaro Toyama

6:00 PM – Manitou
Cover Art: The Good, the Bad, and the WTF

No genre places more emphasis on stunning cover art than science fiction and fantasy. It often goes right, but not always. With powerful visual projection, the panelists will observe a series of good, bad, and WTF covers from science fiction and fantasy, provide commentary, both in praise and… not.

Jim C. Hines, Susan Dennard, Wesley Chu, Justin Landon (M), Megan E. O’Keefe

The Author, Adam Rakunas

Adam Rakunas

Friday

5:00 PM – LeeLanau
“How Many Genders?
What does “gender” mean in today’s LGBTQ community – politically, biologically, socially? Now stretch your imagination—ever since Amok Time” we’ve dreamed about the sex lives of SF characters. With alien biologies, what genders might we encounter among the stars?

Mari Brighe, Julie Lesnik, Sean Martin (M), Stina Leicht, Adam Rakunas

9:00 PM – Charlevoix
Party with Angry Robots!

Saturday

2:00 PM – Keweenaw
Seeing the World Through Different Eyes
Fiction should imagine the entire breadth of human experience. Too often though, it only embraces neurotypical characters. Not every brain works the same. What is neurodiversity? How does it impact story? Who’s doing it well?

Megan E. O’Keefe, Adam Rakunas, Lawrence Schoen, Mari Brighe (M), Stina Leicht

5:00 PM – Keweenaw
LOLCats, Wols, and Watch Me: Pop Culture in SFF?
Pop-culture is ever evolving and fiction often hides behind a desire to be “timeless”. However, pop-culture is an increasing influence on our lives, particularly among young people. How can these modern phenomena be used to make science fiction and fantasy more relevant to today’s readers? Why don’t we see more created popular culture within invented worlds?

Ferrett Steinmetz, Amy Sundberg, Michael Damian Thomas, Sunil Patel, Adam Rakunas

Sunday 

12 NOON – Isle Royale
Repudiating the Replicator
Driven, perhaps, by Star Trek’s replicator and the utilitarian mush of NASA space travel, food in a science fictional setting has been criminally overlooked and underdeveloped. Why has this become the dominant narrative? How should food be used to world build a science fiction story? What stories have used food effectively?

Lawrence Schoen, Elizabeth Shack (M), Alaya Dawn Johnson, Ann Leckie, Adam Rakunas

Angry Robot author Ferret Steinmetz

Ferrett Steinmetz

Friday

9:00 PM – Charlevoix
Party with Angry Robots!

Saturday

12:00 NOON -Petoskey
Lionizing the Status Quo
Genre novels are often about restoring the status quo. Repel the aliens! Defeat the Dark One! Frodo just wants to go back to the Shire and get high. How have these kinds of narratives impacted the way we relate to the world? Should we be more concerned with narratives that do the opposite and seek to overturn the traditional order of the world?

Elizabeth Shack, Douglas Hulick, Ferrett Steinmetz (M), Kameron Hurley, Brigid Collins

5:00 PM – Keweenaw
LOLCats, Wols, and Watch Me: Pop Culture in SFF?
Pop-culture is ever evolving and fiction often hides behind a desire to be “timeless”. However, pop-culture is an increasing influence on our lives, particularly among young people. How can these modern phenomena be used to make science fiction and fantasy more relevant to today’s readers? Why don’t we see more created popular culture within invented worlds?

Ferrett Steinmetz, Amy Sundberg, Michael Damian Thomas, Sunil Patel, Adam Rakunas

6:00 PM – Charlevoix
Hell Hath No Fury: Ways To Motivate, Impede, and Change Female Characters
Women in fiction are often defined by their relation to the men around them. Robbing women of their own agency has led to a dearth of women in the forefront of the genres most beloved stories. How has this pattern impacted readers? How do we change it?

Catherine Shaffer, Jen Haeger, Melissa F. Olson (M), Sunil Patel, Ferrett Steinmetz

Sunday 

11:00 AM – Interlochen
Formative Fiction: The Books That Hooked You
Every one remembers the book that turned them into a reader for life. The panel will discuss the books that were formative in their reading lives. What makes a piece of fiction formative?  How does formative fiction evolve with time? Is this work different for today’s new readers than it was for the previous generation or, even, the one before that?

Ferrett Steinmetz, Cassandra Rose Clarke, Mur Lafferty, Sarah Gibbons. Marko Kloos

The Author, Patrick S. Tomlinson

Patrick S Tomlinson

Friday

9:00 PM – Charlevoix
Party with Angry Robots!

Saturday

10:00 AM – Leelanau
The Fiction of Political SFF

Most “political” science fiction doesn’t really deal with politics, it deals with the setting out of ideologies. In other words, it tells stories that have little to do with running a government. The result is a debate of ideas where the political is described by greed and corruption, but never the merely bureaucratic. Why are these tropes recycled time and again? How can politics be approached in a more authentic way and remain interesting to readers?

Kameron Hurley, Patrick Tomlinson, Justin Landon (M), Amal El-Mohtar, Max Gladstone

1:00 PM – Leelanau
Food Science in Science Fiction
Agriculture and terraforming in extreme environments or small domes. Sustainable food production in space station environments. What’s Martian taters, precious?

Patrick Tomlinson, Julie Lesnik, Elizabeth Shack, Daniel Dugan (M)

3:00 PM – Keweenaw
Gettin’ Punny With It
Piers Anthony and Adam Roberts can’t help themselves. And neither can these panelists. Come watch these punsters compete against one another for the title of ConFusion Punmaster, while discussing whether or not the pun can be used without irony.

Patrick Tomlinson (M), Cherie Priest, Delilah S. Dawson, Dave Robison, Sunil Patel

4:00 PM – Leelanau
Power Armor and Rail Guns: The Science of Future Wars
Military technology in science fiction settings: Who wore the powersuit better?

David Klecha (M), Patrick Tomlinson, Marko Kloos, Matt Pearson

Mike Underwood looks like this. For now...Mike Underwood

Friday
9:00 PM – Charlevoix
Party with Angry Robots!

Saturday 
1:00 PM – Charlevoix
Adapting Science Fiction and Fantasy

Adapting beloved (and not so beloved) genre into other mediums (adapting books to screen, comics based on TV and media properties (Dr. Who, the new Star Wars comics, Mad Max, novelizations of films and tie-in novels)

David M. Stein, Michael R. Underwood (M), Lynne M. Thomas, Matt Pearson

5:00 PM – Manitou
Vigilante Justice in Urban Fantasy

The Urban Fantasy genre is built, in many ways, around glorifying extra-judicial violence. In this way, they might have more in common with the Western than the modern crime novel. Given the huge challenges in the United States with gun violence and criminal justice, should we be more concerned about the narrative shape of these novels?

Diana Rowland, Michael R. Underwood (M), Delilah S. Dawson, Jeannie Szarama, Melissa F. Olson

6:00 PM – Interlochen
The Fallacy of Commercial Fiction

Literary culture often derides the idea of commercial work, suggesting that marketability signals a lack of refinement. What exactly is commercial fiction and why is it snubbed? Furthermore, are science fiction, fantasy, and horror equally burdened by this dichotomy?

Devi Pillai, Laura Resnick, DongWon Song, Michael R. Underwood, Marko Kloos

Sunday
11:00 AM – Manitou
Fantasy Fantasy: Live Draft

Fantasy sports has become an international phenomenon. It’s time for the ultimate conclusion: Fantasy Fantasy. Come watch the panelists conduct a live draft of their Adventuring Party from a pool of the most famous characters in genre history. The winner will be selected by the audience and then showered with confetti.

Tom Doyle, Douglas Hulick, Kristine Smith, Michael R. Underwood, Steve Drew (M), Cherie Priest

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