ConFusion 2016 Schedule

This week I will be attending Life, the Universe, and ConFusion in Novi, MI. ConFusion is a very cool smaller fan-run con, and I’ve been attending for several years now. This year’s promises to be even better, with more friends planning to attend, a new venue, and an exciting schedule.

I’ll have paperback copies of Genrenauts with me – including galleys for Episode 2 – hit me up if you want to get in on the inter-dimensional story heist-ing fun.

Here’s where to find me at the con:

Friday, January 22nd

9:00 PM – Charlevoix
Party with Angry Robots!

Drinks! Snacks! Prizes! Authors!

Robot Party

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Saturday, January 23rd

11:00 AM – Petoskey
Why Do I Pay So Much For Ebooks?

Many new releases debut with eBook prices not too dissimilar from the cost of a discounted hardcover. This had led to cognitive dissonance among readers and complaints that eBook prices are simply too high. Why do readers find these costs difficult to handle? What’s the sweet spot for eBook pricing today and will it rise or decrease over time?

Yanni Kuznia, Brigid Collins, Michael R. Underwood, Steve Buchheit (M), Sunil Patel

 

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, January 24th

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

 

…and if all else fails, find me at The Bar. 🙂

World Fantasy Schedule

I’m in Saratoga Springs for the weekend, attending the World Fantasy Convention. I will primarily have my Angry Robot hat on, but I do have an event tonight for my writing.

 

Tonight, you can find me at Northshire Bookstore:

WorldFantasyEvent_WebGraphic_10.26

 

Originally, I was scheduled to have a reading on Friday at the convention, and was planning to participate in the Mass Signing, but when the original anti-harassment policy was released, I let the WFC staff know that I would not be comfortable participating in programming unless they drastically improved the policy. They have changed the policy to a degree, and I am grateful for that, but I am still not satisfied with the policy as it stands now, and have decided to remove myself from programming.

I apologize to anyone who was looking forward to my reading. I hope to see you at the event tonight. If not, please feel free to drop me a line on Twitter @MikeRUnderwood during the con so we can be sure to meet up and chat during the convention.

Baltimore Book Festival schedule

Hi all! One of the best things about being a writer in Baltimore is that the city’s book festival every fall. SFWA runs an entire mini-convention throughout the festival, and I’ll be there this weekend (as well as splitting my time with the Baltimore Comic-Con, checking in with my comics friends).

Here’s where you can find me at the book festival:

 

Friday, September 25th

11am – The Revolution Will Be Science Fictional and Fantastic

What to read in SF/F and where to find it! Our panel looks at the latest trends in SF/F and the books people are talking about this year.

Emmie Mears, Cat Rambo, Fran Wilde, Michael R. Underwood

12pm – Comics! Science Fiction! Fantasy!

POW! BAM! See how comics, science fiction, and fantasy inform each other. Are superhero stories fantasy, science fiction, or both? Which non-superhero SF/F comics should you be reading? What’s up with novels about superheroes? From Saga to Ms. Marvel to Kavalier & Clay, our panel will discuss it all.
Bill Campbell, Anne Gray, Cat Rambo, Michael R. Underwood

1pm – Reading Group 1 – Superheroes, SF, and Action!

Sit down and discover your new favorite author! Four writers, one hour.
DH Aire, Tom Doyle, Cat Rambo, Michael R. Underwood

 

Saturday, September 26th

12pm – Dangerous Voices Variety Hour

A fast-paced quiz show in the vein of Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me! brought to you by the Baltimore Science Fiction Society. Win free books and learn things you never knew about your favorite authors.
Tobias S. Buckell, Sarah Pinsker, Michael R. Underwood, Diana Peterfreund

6pm – Meet The Authors Social

Rub elbows with your new favorite science fiction and fantasy authors at this annual event.
All the Attending Authors

 

Here’s a map of the festival:

BBF15_Map - SFWA

The fine folks at Ukazoo will be handling book sales, and I’ll be bringing some swag for my various books, current and upcoming. See you there!

The Flurry Before The Storm

Hi folks! I know it’s supposed to be the calm before the storm, but sometimes I get too excited.

I wanted to give you all a heads-up that coming into next week, I’m going to be quite active with promotion for Hexomancy, the fourth Ree Reyes book, and that promo will eventually give way to promotion for Genrenauts: The Shootout Solution.

Hexomancy coverShootout Solution cover

But first, here’s a bit of catch-up of what I’ve been up to over the last month:

At GenCon, Wesley Chu (now a John W. Campbell Award-winner) and I talked with Greg Wilson and Brad Beaulieu of Speculate! The Podcast For Writers, Readers, and Fans) about our publishing journeys, as the start of a new series of episodes.

Then I turned the mic and interviewed Greg and Brad on their journeys so far, their podcasting, hobbies, and life balance.

Tor.com released a free collection with sample chapters from each of the launch list of novellas, including the first Genrenauts story.

Audec-Hal was included in Bradley Beaulieu’s List of Top 10 Metropolis stories.

And right now, Shield and Crocus is on sale for just $1.99 in ebook – grab a copy if you’ve been holding off, or buy a copy for a friend if you feel so inclined.

Deb Stanish interviewed me for the Uncanny Magazine Podcast about my essay on representation in the Marvel & DC Cinematic Universes.

And there’s plenty more to come!

Just Keep Swimming

You know how ducks swimming along look all chill, but if you look under the water, they’re paddling away? That’s me, right now. I’ve got a bunch of balls in the air, so I’ve been spending more time traveling for work, writing, and submitting than on blogging.

Here’s what I’m up to right now:

1) Doing a read-through of Hexomancy to set revision objectives. I’m 251 pages into a 318 page document, and so far, I think Hexomancy is the sharpest, most fun Ree Reyes story yet. I’m really happy with the rough, so I think revision should go fairly smooth.

2) Working with Agent Sara on project proposals to send out into the world. This includes the project Formerly Known As Metaphysical Fencing Academy as well as another project from from PITCHAPALOOZA. The third thing prepping to make the rounds is a Shiny New Idea that I’m particularly excited about.

3) Developing the Shiny New Idea. Said Shiny New Idea is especially exciting because it was created in direct response to my Business Brain going to Creative Brain like it was a TV executive or an editor and said “Hey, Creative Brain. I want to do X thing, business-wise, so bring me a saleable idea that fits models X and Y, preferably in Genre Q.” And Shiny New Idea was the result. I have so many different ideas that I get excited by that it was actually fun to give myself a market-based challenge, saying “I dare you (self) to come up with something cool that fits this business agenda,” and then to do it.

Guacamelee art - by Drink Box Studios

Guacamelee – by Drink Box Studios

In addition, I’ve been really enjoying a video game called Guacamelee, a Castlevania/Metroid-style Mexican Fantasy game starring a Luchador. It’s pleasantly bonkers, and really rather hard, especially since my USB controller doesn’t work with my laptop. I’d play on my desktop, but that’s hooked up to my standing desk, and I’m still recovering from the knee injury from back in February (I got X-Rays, so Medical Responses are in progress).

Other than that, I’m coming up to NYC this weekend to lead a Writecraft workshop at WORD Bookstore in Brooklyn. Hope to see you there!

CONvergence is coming!

Dear all,

CONvergence banner

I’ll be at CONvergence this week, a marvelous all-fandoms SF/F convention in Bloomington, MN. Lee Harris, Emma Newman and I took an Angry Robot scouting mission last year, and this year we’re bringing a bunch of authors for a full advance guard.

In addition to my Angry Robot song-and-dance in the dealer hall, I’ll be on some panels. Here’s my schedule:

Thursday, July 3rd

Mainstreaming of Geekdom – Atrium 6 – 12:30-1:30 PM

Lots of popular movies are based on geek stuff. How do you handle being a geek hipster – or feeling like you don’t fit in? Many people were geeks before it was cool. Let’s stop feeling bad. Let’s celebrate that geeks are cool!
Panelists: Jaqueline Stoner, Hal Bichel, Kara Redding, Michael R. Underwood, Holley McLellan

Skiffy & Fanty Show: Live at CONvergence! – Edina – 2:00-3:00

A live episode of the Skiffy & Fanty Show (skiffyandfanty.com) with guest authors CL Patel and Martha Wells. We’ll discuss influences on SF/F lit from gaming, comics, etc. with authors who write SF/F fiction but have experience writing for other formats.
Panelists: Michael R. Underwood (mod), Carrie Patel, Martha Wells, David Annandale, Shaun Duke, Paul Weimer

Saturday, July 5th

Gender in Urban Fantasy – Edina – 2:00-3:00

This genre tends to have more female protagonists and writers. Is it marketing, or something else?
Panelists: Melissa Olson, Emma Bull, Paul Cornell, Laura Zats, Michael R. Underwood

Is there Life after Dark and Gritty? – Edina – 5:00-6:00

How did we get from Adam West to the Dark Knight? Can we reboot a series and make it more optimistic?
Panelists: Scott Lynch, Sarah Prentice, Michael R. Underwood, Tabitha Anderson, Michael Damian Thomas

Sunday, July 6th

From Gaming to Writing – Atrium 7 – 2:00-3:00

Many novels started life as roleplaying games. Are you a GM using a game to figure out the world for your novel? Or have you had such a great time running or playing in a game that you’re working on making it into a book? What are the perils and pitfalls?
Panelists: Elizabeth Bear, David Annandale, Ozgur K. Sahin, Michael R. Underwood, Emmy Jackson

Phoenix Comic-Con Schedule

I will be attending the Phoenix Comic Con this week, working the Angry Robot Books booth and appearing as an author. I’ve been to New York Comic-Con twice, and I love seeing and participating in these huge celebrations of popular culture.

Aside from basking in the geekitude, here’s where you can find me:

Friday

Angry Robot Preview Panel – 12:00-1:00, North 128a

Urban Fantasy and the Real World – 1:30-2:30, North 126bc

Saturday

Drinks With Authors – 8-11PM, Renaissance Salon 5-8

 

And the rest of the con, I’ll mostly be at the Angry Robot Booth, #2410-2412.

SF Squeecast

Earlier this month, I had the sublime fortune of being a guest on the Hugo-Award-Winning SF Squeecast, joining Seanan McGuire, Paul Cornell, Lynne Thomas, and Michael Damian Thomas.

http://sfsqueecast.com/2014/03/episode-34-ha-ha-ha-bang/

We talked about expectations, how expectations influence the way we experience content, how we squee, and how publishers/creators set expectations about their work.

Then, at the end, they ask me their standard questions, which are comedic and serious by turn.

It was a fantastic time, and I’m very grateful to the SF Squeecast team for having me on.