The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America present a weekend of programming by their member authors and special guests!

Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America

The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) present a packed weekend of programming by both their member authors and special guests! Topics range from science fiction to fantasy to horror to Young Adult fiction. Readers and writers alike will find a wealth of panels, readings, interviews, and signing events at the SFWA tent throughout the festival. Authors, be sure to check out our amazing panels for writers. Festival attendees, come join us for a reception Saturday night, 5:30-7:00 pm, to meet and greet our authors and publishing pros and get autographs. We will have music, food, and drink. Adult and YA readers alike, don’t miss the featured interview with Marissa Meyer in the Literary Tent, Friday at 11:00 to noon. For more information, contact Catherine Asaro at asaro@sff.net.

Stage: Science Center Plaza

Friday, September 26


We Need Diverse Books: the grassroots campaign

Speakers from the organization We Need Diverse Books talk about their exciting new group. WNDB formed in response to the lack of diverse narratives in children’s literature and is committed to the ideal that embracing diversity will lead to acceptance, empathy, and ultimately equality. Come hear them talk about what they've done so far, what they hope to do, and their exciting summer reading series for YA and middle grades.

Panelists: Karen Sandler, Justina Ireland, Ellen Oh, Caroline Richmond

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Writing about social justice in science fiction and fantasy

Join our panel to talk about science fiction that revolves around issues of social justice here on Earth—and elsewhere. From Ursula Le Guin's tour de force novel The Dispossessed to the works of MacArthur Fellow Octavia Butler through a plethora of other writers, science fiction and fantasy authors have never shied away from stories that tackled issues of social justice. Talk with our panelists about their favorite examples and yours.

Panelists: Anne K. Gray, Sunny Moraine, Alex Shvartsman, Fran Wilde

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Science Fiction and Fantasy in Young Adult Fiction.

Join our panelists as they talk about the latest books, TV, and movies in young adult science fiction and fantasy. Hear about what's happening in two of the fastest growing fiction genres, from Harry Potter to the Divergent series, from Avatar to the Hunger Games, from the immensely popular books such as John Green's The Fault in Our Stars to those of our SFWA Guest of Honor, Marissa Meyer, author of Cinder, Scarlet, and Cress.

Panelists: Cheryl Klam, Marissa Meyer, Christine Norris, Rori Shay

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The books of Robert Heinlein and the work of the Heinlein Society

Robert Heinlein is a giant of classic science fiction. Join John Tilden, a director of the Heinlein Society, and Professor Herb Gilliland, of the U.S. Naval Academy, to discuss the works of Robert Heinlein and the Heinlein Society. During the Baltimore Book Festival, the Heinlein Society is also sponsoring a book drive as part of its “Heinlein for Heroes” program. All donations to the book drive are tax-deductible and will go to military bases across the world and VA hospitals here at home. To participate, please drop off your used or new SF/F paperbacks or hardcovers Friday afternoon or Saturday at the Heinlein table in the SFWA tent. Any author's work is welcome, and of course Heinlein is especially cherished. The Heinlein Society was founded by Heinlein's widow Virginia and exists to “Pay it Forward” by supporting causes that were dear to Heinlein during his lifetime

Panelists: John Tilden and Herb Gilliland

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Talk: Flags On The Moon: The Apollo Space Program

Jack Clemons was an engineer and team leader on NASA's Apollo and Space Shuttle Programs. Among his many accomplishments, he also led the team that designed air traffic control systems for the US and UK. He joins us to talk about the Apollo space missions to the Moon. A total of twelve men walked on the Moon, rode on her surface, carried out exploration and scientific experiments, and planted an American flag at their landing site. The flags are still there, monuments to the imagination, resourcefulness, and determination of the human spirit. Each has its own, largely untold, story. Jack's talk will include film clips, photographs, and anecdotes about the missions, as well as insights drawn from his experiences working on NASA's Apollo Moon program.

Speaker: Jack Clemons

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Writing Dark Fantasy

So you'd like to write dark fantasy, horror fiction, paranormals, stories about demons, angels, post-apocalyptic, or other genre-bending fiction that puts you on the edge of your seat. Meet with writers of these genres to talk about what's trending, what publishers are doing, and what tips on writing our panel has to offer.

Panelists: Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Jill Archer, Em Garner, John Maclay, Sunny Moraine

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Saturday, September 27


Dangerous Voices Variety Hour with Marissa Meyer and Charles Gannon

The Dangerous Voices Variety Hour takes its cues from NPR's “Wait, Wait Don’T Tell Me” quiz show and Orson Welles' original War of the Worlds broadcast. It features readings, trivia, great prizes, irreverent author interviews, and more fun than you thought you could have at a reading."

Participants: Marissa Meyer and Charles Gannon. Co-hosted by Sarah Pinsker and Michael Underwood.

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Designing your own curriculum: homeschooling and other alternate forms of education

Join our panelists, both homeschoolers and authors who work with them, to discuss the exciting educational movement in homeschooling, unschooling, and other alternate forms of family-directed education. Find out what educational resources are available for families that design their own curriculums in literature, books, reading, and writing, and what writers in the local scene work with home educators.

Panelists: Catherine Asaro, Alma Katsu, L. Jagi Lamplighter, Rori Shay, Dawnyell Snyder

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Short stories: What's trending and who are the hot new authors in Sci-Fi and fantasy?

The title says it all! Join our panel of writers to hear about the field of short fiction in SF and fantasy. The field of speculative fiction has a vital and always-growing arena for publication of short fiction. More ways than ever exist for readers to find stories or place their own works.

Panelists: Harry Heckel, Brenda Clough, John Maclay, Alex Shvartsman

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How can I get my writing noticed? A Must-Do Panel for Writers in the Modern Age

You've finished a story or book and now you'd like to get it published and start buzz about your work. But in this modern age, the avenues for publication and promotion are dizzying, and they often tangle together. What are your options? What will bring you the most word of mouth? The most reviews? The best pay? Should you go it alone or seek a major publisher? Come talk with publishers, editors, con organizers, and reviewers about your options.

Panelists: Scott Edelman, Elektra Hammond, Don Sakers, Peggy Rae Sapienza, Mike Underwood, Jean Marie Ward

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Reception and Meet & Greet with authors, music, and food

Join the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America at our reception, autographing session, and Meet and Greet with our program participants at the Baltimore Book Festival.

Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Jeanne Adams, Jill Archer, Catherine Asaro, Jack Clemons, Brenda Clough, Scott Edelman, Charles Gannon, Ronald Garner, Em Garner, Herb Gilliland, Anne K Gray, Elektra Hammond, Harry Heckel, Alma Katsu, Cheryl Klam, L. Jagi Lamplighter, John Maclay, Marrisa Meyer, Sunny Moraine, Christine Norris, Sarah Pinsker, Don Sakers, Peggy Rae Sapienza, Rori Shay, Alex Shvartsman, Dawnyell Snyder, Bud Sparhawk, John Tilden, Mike Underwood, Jean Marie Ward, Fran Wilde, Karlo Yeager

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Sunday, September 28


Science in Science Fiction: Fun and Imagination

Our panel of scientists will discuss exciting new ideas in science. How do you extrapolate known science into the realm of "What if?" that thrills readers about our genre? Talk with our experts about some of the coolest ideas out there and how we can use them in fiction.

Panelists: Jack Clemons, Bud Sparhawk, Fran Wilde, Catherine Asaro

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Crowd-funding for science fiction and fantasy projects

Authors and publishers are crowd-funding their projects in greater numbers every day with sites like Kickstarter or Indiegogo. These resources can seem daunting at first glance, and you need to know the marketplace and its consumers before you launch a project. But when it works, crowd-funding is an incredible resource. Our speaker Ron Garner of Silence in the Library Publishing has run numerous successful Kickstarter and Indiegogo projects. He will share methods and tips, talk about the elements common to successful crowd-funding projects, and answer questions from the audience.

Speaker: Ronald Garner

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Science Fiction and Fantasy Mysteries

Mysteries in science fiction are one of the trendiest new subgenres. What happens when you add "What if?" to "Whodonnit?" Join our panelists to discuss detectives, procedure, body disposal in the past, present and future, and more. They will talk about how you can extrapolate all that into the future for science fiction mysteries.

Panelists: Jeanne Adams, Sarah Pinsker, Scott Edelman, Miguelina Perez, Don Sakers

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Book discussion with the Baltimore Science Fiction Society

Join the Baltimore Science Fiction club to meet other readers in the Baltimore area, socialize, and discuss their book for the month, The Best of All Possible Worlds, by Karen Lord.

Moderator: Karlo Yeager

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View Full Bookfest Schedule

Plan Your Visit


Sept 25-27, 2015
Fri-Sun: llam - 7pm


Baltimore Inner Harbor

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