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LonCon and Pullman
So, here's where you'll find me at LonCon. I've been packed into one convenient day...

Crossing Boundaries: Histories of International SF/F for Children

Thursday 11:00 - 12:00, Capital Suite 6 (ExCeL)

Is there a ‘shared’ understanding of the fantastic across cultures? How have fantasy (and science fiction) narratives for young readers evolved in different countries and storytelling traditions? What kinds of stories succeed or fail in crossing national borders and why? How are these transnational stories from ‘Other’ places received and read in their new contexts? What are some affinities and tensions between these different ‘imagined communities’? This panel will address the development of international traditions of fantasy (and science fiction) for young readers and the relationship between the local, the national and the global in the world of children’s literature. Drawing upon the range of the panelists’ national and transnational experiences, we will explore issues around the intersections between regional, national and international literatures and the representation of diversity, identity and the Other in fantastic texts for young people.

Dr. Patricia Kennon (M), Sanna Lehtonen, Michael Levy, K.V. Johansen, Catherine Butler

What's In a Name?

Thursday 16:30 - 18:00, Capital Suite 7+12 (ExCeL)

Megan Lindholm/Robin Hobb, Iain (M) Banks, Tom/Thomas Holt, James SA Corey, Mazarkis Williams: many people publish under pseudonyms, some more subtle than others. Why do writers opt for a pen-name? Why do some have more than one? How important is 'branding' to marketing genre fiction, and what role do genre and gender divides play in the decision?

Bella Pagan (M), Catherine Butler, Robin Hobb, Ben Jeapes, Seanan McGuire


Also, I gather that this is the publication day for this book of essays on Philip Pullman, which I edited with my friend (and sometime student) Tommy Halsdorf. If you haven't bought your beach book yet, why not give it a try?

I'll be interested in hearing reports on both of those.

---L.

I shall try to oblige.

So, here's where you'll find me at LonCon. I've been packed into one convenient day...

Both of those look extremely cool. I hope someone writes up the results where I can read them! I will not be at Worldcon this year; I do not have money.

Also, I gather that this is the publication day for this book of essays on Philip Pullman, which I edited with my friend (and sometime student) Tommy Halsdorf.

Mazel tov, book!

It thanks you, as do I.

You know, I trust, that there's a thing in US publishing - I've no idea if it's operative elsewhere - where large-bookseller orders are based on the sales of the author's previous book. So if a book does poorly, the author is forced to take a pseudonym to wipe the slate clean. (Or, if a book is expected to be out of the author's normal style and perhaps not to do well, to take a pseudonym for that book, to protect subsequent releases). This strikes me as incredible - surely booksellers can't be THAT stupid - but I'm assured it's true.

But I hope your panel will get into other reasons for pseudonyms, including one that interests me: to create a more memorable name.

We have 90 minutes, so I hope we'll be able to range around a bit. But the reason you mention is alas all too operative elsewhere. "Slaves of the EPOS Data" might make a good title for a dystopian novel about midlist writers - but the dystopia is here. I blame the publishers more than the booksellers, and more specifically the publishers' marketing departments, who are generally very keen on seeing authors as brands, and their names therefore as brand names.

Will you be around on more days than Thursday?

I'll be there until Saturday. Hopefully see you there?

I would love to see you! I'll be mostly in the Exhibits Hall.

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