I’m looking forward to being in Kansas City in a couple of weeks for the World Science Fiction Convention. I’ve got my complete schedule now: if you’re attending, hope to see you there! (I’ll be in my Edward Willett guise, not my E.C. Blake one.)
New Trends in Young Adult Novels
Thursday 12:00 – 13:00, 2503A (Kansas City Convention Center)
What’s new in young adult fiction? It seems like YA changes faster than anything else in the market, but is that really true? What themes are hot today? What topics are now taboo? And what can we look forward to in the near future?
Ms Rachel Neumeier, Christine Taylor-Butler (M), Jane Ann McLachlan, Edward Willett, Denise Grover Swank
Middle Grade and Young Adult Fiction: What’s the Difference?
Thursday 17:00 – 18:00, 2208 (Kansas City Convention Center)
YA and MG, it’s all just kids lit, right? Not necessarily. James and the Giant Peach is a much different story than The Hunger Games, and yet the two audiences often get lumped together — like we’re doing here. So, let’s break them apart. Panelists discuss defining characteristics of Young Adult and Middle Grade fiction, differences in world view, special problems — and provide some literary examples.
Kathryn Sullivan (M), Christine Taylor-Butler, Rebecca Moesta, Edward Willett, Adam-Troy Castro
Latchkey Kids in Fiction
Friday 10:00 – 11:00, 2206 (Kansas City Convention Center)
Parents are often missing (or at least sidelined) in today’s young adult fiction. With the emergence of these latchkey kids who come home to empty houses and who have very little (if any) parental supervision, what message is this sending to today’s readers? What purpose do these absentee parents play in the larger story? Sure, it ratchets up the tension, but why is it such a common theme? Moreover, what resources are available to these latchkey kids and what dangers should they keep in mind when operating without a parent?
Tina Connolly (M), James Van Pelt, Tamora Pierce, Sarah Beth Durst, Edward Willett
Kaffeeklatsch: Jennifer Brozek, Ken Liu, Bud Sparhawk, Edward Willett
Friday 15:00 – 16:00, 2211 (KKs) (Kansas City Convention Center)
Autographing: Ctein, Tanglwyst de Holloway, Esther Friesner, James Patrick Kelly, Kathryn Sullivan, Edward Willett
Saturday 11:00 – 12:00, Autographing Space (Kansas City Convention Center)
YA Fiction Beyond Borders
Saturday 17:00 – 18:00, 3501F (Kansas City Convention Center)
Young adult fiction is a strong and thriving market in the U.S., but how is it doing internationally? We discuss the books and authors beyond mainstream “America’s literary borders” that deserve recognition. Is there a difference in approach, content, characters, and diversity of topics and themes? How do we continue to break down these borders and barriers for YA readers and authors alike?
Mr. Peadar O Guilin, Keith Yatsuhashi, Shanna Swendson, Edward Willett, Christopher Kastensmidt (M)
Reading: Edward Willett
Sunday 13:30 – 14:00, 2202 (Readings) (Kansas City Convention Center)