On My 2011 Shore Leave Schedule

We come to it at last, the great battle of our times.

No, wait. That’s not right.

Words are flowing out like endless rain into a paper cup.

No, that’s not it, either.

Oh! I’ve got it!

Next weekend, July 8th through 10th, in Hunt Valley, Maryland, is Shore Leave, a science-fiction and fantasy convention. This year marks the start of my second decade of attending Shore Leave as either a guest or a regular con-goer; my first Shore Leave was in 2001, and this is now my eleventh.

Tempus fugit. :spock:

A schedule was released to the author guests yesterday, and several other guests, among them Chris Bennett, David Mack, Dayton Ward, and Keith R.A. DeCandido, have posted their preliminary schedules.

My schedule this year is rather extensive.


  • Meet the Pros
    Hunt/Valley Hallway — 10pm-Midnight
    It’s the traditional author meet-and-greet; meet your favorite authors and get your books signed.


  • “The Game Is On!” — Sherlock Holmes Is On The Case
    Salon E — 10 o’clock
    Doctor Who‘s Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss updated Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s detective Sherlock Holmes for modern audiences in a new series of films for the BBC and Masterpiece Theatre starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman. Can the world live with two Holmeses — Cumberbatch and Robert Downey, Jr.? What made the Sherlock series so successful, and what does the future hold for the series and the next Downey film, coming this Christmas?
    Panelists: Allyn Gibson, Roberta Rogow, Rigel Ailur, Paul Simpson, Alan Kistler, Mike W. Barr
  • Doctor Who & Torchwood
    Salon A — Noon
    There’s some quirky show from the UK that people for some inexplicable reason happen to like… 😉
    Panelists: Allyn Gibson, Rigel Ailur, Paul Simpson, Alan Kistler
  • From Comics To Film
    Salon E — 2 o’clock
    People keep making movies out of comic books. Just this year there’s Thor, X-Men: First Class, Captain America, Green Lantern, The Smurfs, Tintin, and a whole lot more that I’m blanking on. What’s the appeal? What do people want from comics adaptations? And what’s coming out that people are going to be energized by?
    Panelists: Allyn Gibson, Peter David, Michael Jan Friedman, Dave Galanter, Alan Kistler, Mike W. Barr
  • The Beatles… Just Because!
    Chase — 6 o’clock
    “What should have happened is that the Bonzos and the Beatles should have turned into one great Rutle band with all the Pythons and had a laugh…” — George Harrison
    This could be an interesting panel. I know I’ll find a way of filling the hour…
    Panelists: Allyn Gibson, William Leisner


  • A Long-Expected Hobbit
    Derby — 10 o’clock
    Filming began this spring on the long-awaited Hobbit films by Peter Jackson, with the first of the two-part adapation due in theaters in December 2012, nine years after THE Return of the King took the world by storm. What can audiences expect of the return to J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle-Earth, and will Jackson recapture the Middle-Earth magic?
    Panelists: Allyn Gibson
  • The Once and Future Camelot
    Salon A — 11 o’clock
    While I pitched this as an opportunity to talk about Merlin and the just-cancelled Camelot, I imagine that we’ll also talk about Peter David‘s soon-to-be-released The Camelot Papers. And maybe we’ll ever sing tunes from Spamalot… 🙂
    Panelists: Allyn Gibson, Peter David, Mike W. Barr
  • The New DC Comics
    Salon E — 2 o’clock
    For seventy-five years, comics readers have been following the adventures of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and the rest of the DC Universe. This September, DC Comics wipes the slate clean and relaunches their universe after the Flashpoint event and embraces the digital medium. What can readers expect from the new DC Comics and their “new 52,” and what does the company’s embrace of digital mean for the industry as a whole?
    Panelists: Allyn Gibson, Alan Kistler
  • The Golden Age of Science-Fiction is Twelve
    Salon E — 4 o’clock
    Literary critic Peter Graham famously wrote in 1957 that “the Golden Age of science fiction is twelve” when describing the age at which many readers discovered the possibilities of the literary genre. In an age of television series, movies, video games, and comic books, does science-fiction literature still have a place? How can we best reach the next generation of readers? And which books and which authors will hook nascent fans and draw them in?
    Panelists: Allyn Gibson, Paul Simpson

And after all that? I’m going to need to sleep for three days… 😉

As always, this is tentative and subject to change, and no, I don’t expect to moderate all of these panels, because that would be insane. And, of course, when in doubt, look in the bar, because the bar is where writers gravitate.

Be sure to check out the convention’s Programming page for more information about what’s happening next week.

Hopefully, I’ll see some of you there. :cheers:

Published by Allyn

A writer, editor, journalist, sometimes coder, occasional historian, and all-around scholar, Allyn Gibson is the writer for Diamond Comic Distributors' monthly PREVIEWS catalog, used by comic book shops and throughout the comics industry, and the editor for its monthly order forms. In his over ten years in the industry, Allyn has interviewed comics creators and pop culture celebrities, covered conventions, analyzed industry revenue trends, and written copy for comics, toys, and other pop culture merchandise. Allyn is also known for his short fiction (including the Star Trek story "Make-Believe,"the Doctor Who short story "The Spindle of Necessity," and the ReDeus story "The Ginger Kid"). Allyn has been blogging regularly with WordPress since 2004.

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