Norwescon 46 Panels on Twitch for a Limited Time

During this year’s convention, we livestreamed from one of our paneling rooms to Twitch, and these videos will be available for a short time for you to rewatch! Each video is available for a week following the broadcast, so Thursday’s panels have about three more days to be seen, while Sunday’s panels have almost a week left before they disappear.

We also streamed some of our primary panels and events to YouTube, and these links will not be expiring!

Find some time, kick back, and enjoy a peek at Norwescon 46!

Here’s what you can see from each day; click on the title of the panel or event to watch it.

From Thursday, March 28

  • Nuclear Reactors in Space: With current space technology, getting to Mars and back will require a large amount of fuel. A rocket using nuclear reactor technology would be able to complete the mission with less fuel and spend less time in space. New nuclear technologies called small modular reactors are being tested that should be safer. Is this the way to complete a trip to Mars and back? Dan Dubrick (M), Mike Brennan, Andy Dykes, Dr. Sean Robinson, Dave Davis, Howard Davidson
  • Preparing Your Writing for a Comic Adaptation!: Do you have a story that would make a great comic? Learn how to prepare your writing to work with an artist and write a comic book script. G.R. Theron (M), David Boop, Eric L Vargas, Elizabeth Guizzetti
  • Metaphors of Neurodivergence: Many fans are drawn to nonhuman characters like Data and Spock because they can relate to their “alien” experience among “normal” humans. What other metaphors of neurodivergence are out there? How can neurodivergent writers share their experiences with the neurotypical world? Moving beyond the sociopathic genius and the childlike savant—how do we write neurodivergent characters who are compelling and reflect reality? Liz Coleman (M), Tom D Wright, Clara Ward, Danielle Gembala, Craig Jackson
  • Firearms in Fiction and Gaming: Many writers and game designers have only an academic knowledge of modern weapons, much of it drawn from movies and TV and either wrong or impractical. Come listen to our panel of veterans and other experts dispel some of the myths that continue in fiction. Bill Gruner (M), Clayton Mann, D.L. Solum, John Lovett, Teresa Drag
  • Writing for Video Games: While we all recognize how great the graphics or gameplay are in our favorite video games, what would any game be without the writing? Our panelists discuss the process of writing for a video game and what role(s) the writing plays in making a game memorable and successful. Evan J. Peterson (M), Sandra Rosner, Jeff Grubb, Monte Lin
  • Opening Ceremonies: The official kickoff to Norwescon 46, featuring interviews with our guests of honor, a taste of things to come, and general shenanigans. Lydia K. Valentine (M), Dr. Raychelle Burks, Kate Alice Marshall, Neil Clarke (YOUTUBE LINK COMING SOON: Tech issues meant we only streamed the final eight minutes live. We will be uploading the full recording soon.)
  • Queering History and Legend: Not only has history been portrayed as white, not only has it been portrayed as male, but stories centering queerness are supposedly a “recent occurrence.” Right? SO VERY WRONG. Join us while we explore very real instances of historical LGBTQ2S+ people from varying cultures and learn how to use that as background for crafting worlds that empower queer spaces. Talulah J. Sullivan (M), Lezli Robyn, S.L. Coney, Anne Stewart, Dilman Dila
  • The Titan Submersible and Its Parallels in SF: OceanGate was trying to be a disruptor and find ways to build submarines more cheaply. They claimed the rules were favoring the “big guys” and were trying to prevent innovation. This idea has appeared in science fiction over and over, whether it’s the movie Salvage-1 or the portrayal of Belters in The Expanse books and TV show. How would OceanGate have been viewed last year, before the loss in June? Is it wrong to allow experimental crafts, whether underwater or in space? Should formal engineering be required or is it enough to just design stuff? Dr. Sean Robinson (M), Bart Kemper, Russell Ervin, Philip L. Swan
  • Let’s Rank Every Sci-Fi Character Ever!: Is Captain Kirk more influential than John Carter? Is Ellen Ripley cooler than E.T.? Panelists and audience will discuss, explore, and ultimately rank every science fiction character ever to grace the screen. Or at least as many as we can get to in 45 minutes! Berlynn Wohl (M), Gina Saucier, Brian D. Oberquell

From Friday, March 29

  • Understanding Military Aspects of Your Sci-Fi Tale: Research is tough. If you’ve never served in the military, it can be difficult, or well-nigh impossible to write your story with any degree of accuracy. Multiple panelists who have all served in the military will help you get the military aspects of your story correct. Peter Fuller (M), Teresa Drag, Bill Gruner, Russell Ervin, Mike Brennan, Dr. Mark Rounds
  • Interview and Q&A with Special Guest of Honor Kate Alice Marshall: Come join us for an interview with Norwescon 46’s special guest of honor, Kate Alice Marshall, and get a chance to ask your own questions during the Q&A. Julie McGalliard (M), Kate Alice Marshall (YouTube link; no expiration.)
  • Developing strong teen characters: Hero or zero? Examine what characteristics teen characters need to remain authentic and still have credibility in the adult world. Lish McBride (M), Kara Swanson, Tyrean Martinson, Karen Eisenbrey, Anastasia Wilde
  • Interview and Q&A with Science Guest of Honor Dr. Raychelle Burks: Come join us for an interview with Norwescon 46’s science guest of honor, Dr. Raychelle Burks, and get a chance to ask your own questions during the Q&A. Marta Murvosh (M), Dr. Raychelle Burks (YouTube link; no expiration.)
  • Making Role-Playing Games Welcoming to New Players: As the role-playing game and story game hobby grows, we need to pay attention to creating a warm, inviting, and safe atmosphere for new players. How do we do our best to make sure these players have fun and come back? Bruce R. Cordell (M), Jason Tondro, Jeff Grubb, Jenny Jarzabski, Luis Loza
  • Monsters With the Most: Designing a Creature: What’s a game without fearsome, horrifying monsters, right? Our panelists discuss what goes into the design of the best and most challenging monstrous opponents. Stephen Radney-MacFarland (M), Jason Nelson, Ron Lundeen, Erik Scott de Bie, Tim Nightengale
  • Interview and Art with Artist Guest of Honor Charles Vess: Come join us for an interview with Norwescon 46’s artist guest of honor, Charles Vess, and get a chance to ask your own questions during the Q&A. Pat Booze (M), Charles Vess (YouTube link; no expiration.)
  • Interview and Q&A with Spotlight Publisher Representative Neil Clarke of Clarkesworld Magazine: Come join us for an interview with Norwescon 46’s spotlight publisher representative, Neil Clarke of Clarkesworld Magazine, and get a chance to ask your own questions during the Q&A. Sam Stark (M), Neil Clarke (YouTube link; no expiration.)
  • Playing with Medieval History: Alternate timelines, quantum universes, or just plain-old time machines—all of these concepts create a way for an author to play with history. This is an interactive panel where the audience chooses a significant event in medieval history and comes up with alternatives—and their consequences. A lively dialogue always ensues. Come join us! GregRobin Smith (M), Russell Ervin, Ann Shilling, William Elder
  • Space Drives and SF Worldbuilding: An interstellar empire connected by instantaneous portals will, of necessity, have very different politics and economy from one connected by slower-than-light generation ships or suspended animation or one connected by FTL but not instantaneous travel. The difference between days and months of travel time between inhabited planets can have a huge effect on the culture. And what happens when a new, faster technology is added to the mix? Learn how to use your mode of travel to launch the worldbuilding process. David D. Levine (M), Dave Davis, Andy Dykes, Curtis C. Chen
  • Religion and Representation in Media: Over the years, various real and fictional religions have been portrayed both accurately and inaccurately in popular media. We will discuss the works of H.P. Lovecraft and the Blade Runner novel, as well as films such as The Ten Commandments, The Handmaid’s Tale, The Serpent and the Rainbow, The Witch, and the Avatar movies. How does representation affect real practitioners? Does fiction ever become real life? Mir Plemmons (M), Dean Wells, Sandra Rosner, Jason Nelson
  • SLS/Artemis: Are the Taxpayers Getting Their Money’s Worth?: The Space Launch System (SLS) is NASA’s attempt to launch people, and supplies, to the new Lunar Gateway space station, the moon, and possibly Mars. Are people getting their money out of the system, or is it a boondoggle of large proportions? Dan Dubrick (M), Dave Davis, G. David Nordley, Philip L. Swan, Andy Dykes
  • Philip K. Dick Award Ceremony: The Philip K. Dick Award is presented annually at Norwescon with the support of the Philip K. Dick Trust, for distinguished science fiction published in paperback original form in the United States. The award is sponsored by the Philadelphia Science Fiction Society and the Philip K. Dick Trust, and the award ceremony is sponsored by Norwescon. Bethany Jacobs, Gordon Van Gelder, S.L. Coney, SunnyJim Morgan, Dilman Dila (YouTube link; no expiration.)
  • Northwest Speculative Reading: Join Northwest Speculative as we present A Night at Norwescon. We are hosting a talented group of local authors who will share their recent or upcoming work and how to connect with them. Northwest Speculative is a regional speculative fiction reading series committed to local events which highlight the Pacific Northwest’s rich tradition and provide opportunities for authors and audience to meet. G.R. Theron (M), Jessie Kwak, Caren Sumption, Brenda Cooper, Eva L. Elasigue, Rhiannon/R.Z. Held, Remy Nakamura, Curtis C. Chen, Joseph Malik

From Saturday, March 30

  • Virtual Tabletops vs. Maps and Minis: Before COVID, it seemed like the default for gaming tables was a whole lot of miniatures and many different battle maps. But as we all quarantined, virtual tabletop programs rapidly became the norm. Are we going to see gaming with miniatures disappear? Panelists will discuss the pros and cons of each approach. Tim Nightengale (M), Luis Loza, Ron Lundeen, Stephen Radney-MacFarland, Jason Nelson
  • The History of Fanfic: Fanfic isn’t a new invention. For a long time it has been a safe space in which to play and create, from the birth of slash fiction and Mary Sues to current professional authors who still write and post fanfic on the side. How has fanfiction been published and shared in the past, and how has it evolved into its own creative entity, not just “practice for real writing?” Kris “Pepper” Hambrick (M), Berlynn Wohl, Janna Silverstein, Anne Stewart, B. Zelkovich
  • The Neuroscience of Neurodivergence: How and from what does neurodivergence diverge? What may be some cognitive differences and how do they express themselves in the world? Liz Coleman (M), Danielle Gembala, Liz Argall, Brian U. Garrison, A.W. McCollough
  • Small Press vs. Traditional vs. Self-Publishing: What is the right path for you? Discuss the pros and cons of each so that you can make more informed decisions. Tom Whitmore (M), Rhiannon/R.Z. Held, Brianna Tibbetts, D.L. Solum, Leslie Varney
  • Mining the Ocean for Speculative Fiction: Who needs extraterrestrials when 90 percent of species in our own ocean have yet to be cataloged? Panelists discuss known sea creatures which might change color, shape, and texture at will, or hunt for dinner using electroreception. We will extrapolate from there to plausible/fantastical beings that might have evolved here on Earth—or deep in space. Bart Kemper (M), Charlotte Lewis Brown, Clara Ward, Gwendolyn N. Nix, Tegan Moore, G. David Nordley
  • Worldcon 2025: Back Home Again: Tons of fans from the Pacific Northwest go to Worldcon, the World Science Fiction Convention, every year. And yet it has only been held three times in this region: Portland in 1950, Seattle in 1961, and Spokane in 2015. But—it’s coming back here to Seattle in August 2025! Worldcon members vote on the Hugo Awards and rub shoulders with the best and brightest stars of our field. Come learn how Worldcon operates, find out why you should go, and learn what it will take to make Seattle Worldcon 2025 a success. Kathy (M)
  • Wandering Beyond the Hero’s Journey: The hero’s journey is a good storyline, but it’s not the only one. And its all-too-prevalent three-act structure often fails to address women’s journeys, and doesn’t allow enough room for the storytelling arcs of non-Anglo peoples. Are you willing to wander off the path? Come explore different examples and ways to read and craft story. Talulah J. Sullivan, Eva L. Elasigue, Sara A Mueller, Aigner Loren Wilson, Lezli Robyn
  • Writing Realistic Military Combat: How to write believable, purposeful violent scenes and use them to advance the story and develop your world. Where do you even start when writing a battle scene? Let our panelists help answer your question about military combat. Travis Partington (M), Dr. Mark Rounds, Metaerie, Teresa Drag, Clayton Mann
  • Trapped in the House: Domestic Horror & Thrillers: Billions of people spent months on end stuck inside their homes during the pandemic. Inevitably this has inspired new stories about domestic dangers, haunted homes, and antagonistic family members and flatmates. What’s lurking in the basement? Where did the children disappear to? Can I trust my partner? Panelists look at the history of horror-at-home, from classic Gothic literature to recent books and media. Evan J. Peterson (M), Gordon B. White, Ozzie M. Gartrell, Gwen Callahan , Kate Alice Marshall
  • Masquerade: We invite all of you to attend the annual presentation of the finest creations that Norwescon costumers and cosplayers have to offer, at the Norwescon 46 Masquerade. Join us in cheering on this year’s crew of creatives as they share their hard-wrought handiwork. Be a part of the oohing and aahing at the pageantry and presentation of these amazing makers. (YouTube link; no expiration.)
  • Writers Who Are Musicians and Musicians Who Are Writers: How do writing and music interact. Does one inspire the other? For those who do both, which came first? How does one modality help the craft of the other? Richard Sparks (M), Ken Scholes, GregRobin Smith, Amanda Cherry
  • Found Family in YA Science Fiction: From the Unstoppable trilogy by Charlie Jane Anders to the Guardians of the Galaxy, young adult science fiction is brimming with found families. What should YA writers consider when they engage with this trope? We’ll talk about what distinguishes a found family from any other fictional team or group of friends, when and how to bring the group together, and how to find the right tone for your cast. David D. Levine (M), Kate Alice Marshall, Lezli Robyn
  • Reading: Liz Argall: Liz performs a comic, speculative, and non-fiction performance piece, inspired by her zine, Ordinary Madness, a love letter to an unread book, and various short works. Rated PG. Liz Argall (M)

From Sunday, March 30

  • The Gothic Arts: From The Castle of Otranto (1764) to Wednesday (2022), the Gothic aesthetic and Gothic tropes have influenced books, paintings, comics, films, fashion, music, television, and video games. What makes a work “Gothic”? How has the genre changed over time? What are the reasons for its enduring appeal? Evan J. Peterson (M), B. Zelkovich, Richard Stephens, Laura Cranehill, Julie McGalliard
  • Alternative Economic Systems: As artificial intelligence, ubiquitous access, and autonomous robotic systems become the norm, how will this change the shape of economies? What happens when remote work becomes the norm? Will capitalism as we know it become capitalism as we don’t? Is a basic living stipend (BLS) likely? Will financial inequality be the defining characteristic of the 21st century? What happens to those who fall through the cracks (or chasms)? This is a panel focusing on your inner economist. Jon Lasser (M), Tom D Wright, Kaylea Champion, Norman K. Moss, Shahid Mahmud
  • The McGuffin of Unexplained Science: How far do you have to go? What will the reader deal with? Do you explain in detail (Asimov) or do you deal in generalities (Foster)? How consistent with this should you be? Are some sciences easier? Rhiannon/R.Z. Held (M), Jim Kling, Tom Llewellyn, Colette Breshears, J.P. Barnett
  • What’s the Hurry? A New Space Race?: In the last decade more nations have been working towards putting people into space. This includes the USA, Russia, China, India, and Europe. Is this the beginning of a new race to the moon, Mars, and asteroids? Dr. Sean Robinson (M), G. David Nordley, Hugh S. Gregory, Philip L. Swan
  • Genre Poetry in Media and History: This is an introduction to speculative/genre poetry with examples from history (both literary history and anthropology), media (poetry in video games—it’s more common than you think), and around the world. Attendees will hopefully walk away with not just a new awareness of a new (to them) type of writing, but also the role poetry plays in our conception of nerd culture. Lydia K. Valentine (M), Thursday

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