Robert J. Sawyer

Hugo and Nebula Award-Winning Science Fiction Writer

Readercon Programming 2008

by Rob - July 12th, 2008.
Filed under: Uncategorized.

Here’s my programming schedule for Readercon 19, being held near Boston from Thursday evening, July 17, through Sunday afternoon, July 20, 2008:

15. FRIDAY 11:00 ME Science Fiction as a Mirror for Reality. Robert J. Sawyer with discussion by Paolo Bacigalupi, Michael A. Burstein, Lancer Kind, Hildy Silverman, et al. Talk / Discussion (60 min.). Science fiction has always been a powerful vehicle for commenting on the here-and-now, letting us explore the burning issues of today in the guise of talking about tomorrow. Sawyer is currently under contract with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation to host and co-produce a pilot for a web-based new-media series based on this idea. He’ll talk about sf as a mirror of reality, discuss the project, and brainstorm with audience members about recent sf that comments on the here and now and might be worth spotlighting should the CBC series go beyond the pilot stage.

62. FRIDAY 4:00 NH Robert J. Sawyer reads from his upcoming novel Wake (2009). (60 min.)

68. FRIDAY 5:00 G A Tale of Two Disciplines. Louise Marley, Geoff Ryman, Robert J. Sawyer (moderator), Vandana Singh, Ian Randal Strock. “The scientific world of the future will be pairs, or connections. Everybody is going to be a bridge between specialties.”–Donald Knuth. Combining ideas from two or more disciplines is not just a fresh approach to doing science, it’s a great way to generate thought-provoking hard sf. We especially want to talk about stories where the ideas don’t just co-exist as separate elements of an extrapolated future, but combine in interesting or unexpected ways.

158. SATURDAY 3:00 Vin Kaffeeklatsch.

178. SUNDAY 11:00 ME The Fermi Paradox Paradox. Michael A. Burstein, Jeff Hecht (L), Steven Popkes, Robert J. Sawyer, Ian Randal Strock. The Fermi Paradox–the absence of any evidence of extraterrestrial civilization despite the huge size and age of the universe–seems like it should be the basis for much hard sf. The paradox has numerous solutions (e.g., that nearly all civilizations quickly leave this reality and go somewhere else, or they destroy themselves as quickly, or they’re consciously hiding from us), and all the solutions seem to be storyable. What sf writers have explored the paradox, and why are there so few of them? Is it because the vision of a galaxy essentially devoid of extraterrestrial intelligence is just a downer?

The Robert J. Sawyer Web Site

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