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Fourth Street Fantasy

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2014 Book List [Jun. 24th, 2014|03:43 pm]

Cross-posted to Personal Journal.

The not-so-long-awaited 2014 Fourth Street book list is now up. But before you click on the link please skim over my notes and requests.

1. There seems to have been some confusion over whether or not I was keeping a book list this year. I was, but when I heard about the list on the white-board I also got confused and didn't arrange for coverage for panels I had to miss.

2. I was providing child-car for my daughter during two of the panels ("Originality and Micro-genre" and "Influence, Tropes, and Prior Art.") If you happened to note any books mentioned during those panels, or if you have a picture of the whiteboard please let me know about them and I'll happily add them to the list.

3. There were 8 books that showed up on the board in between panels and I'm not 100% sure where they belong. If you know for sure let me know so I can file them correctly. Mystery Solved!

4. There were a couple of books that I either couldn't decipher fully from my notes, or couldn't find the right book. Please help me fill in the blanks! missing informationCollapse )

5. I want to try something different this year. I have a section on the page called "Books that should have been mentioned but weren't." Were you sitting there trying to remember the title/author during a panel but couldn't quite bring it to mind? Did you only think of the perfect book on the plane home? Let me know and I'll add it to the list.
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Panel Topics Updated [Apr. 27th, 2014|10:42 pm]

I went through the comments and wrote up all the panel suggestions people had made so they could be reviewed more easily.

Please read and comment.
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Intermediate Writers Gathering [Apr. 19th, 2014|06:58 pm]

[mood |curiouscurious]

Howdy, Fourth Streeters!

I was talking to some folks last year, and around the 'net betimes, and we agreed that there's a dearth of resources and support for intermediate-level writers. There's a ton of resources out there aimed at beginners, and the established pros generally have their own things going, but that gap in the middle is... well, a gap. And since I fall in that gap myself, I naturally want to do something about it.

And what better way to start than by having an Intermediate Writers gathering at 4th Street? Janet has kindly agreed to squeeze us in on Friday night after dinner. If you consider yourself an intermediate writer, come and hang out with people who're in the same boat as you, or at least floating on the same water and wondering where all the paddles have gone. Network with other intermediate writers. Meet potential critique partners. Share resources and tips. Have fun. Have snacks.

So what, you may ask, is an intermediate writer? Well, if...'ve finished a novel (or the short-story equivalent)'re frustrated with the beginner-level discussion on most writing forums've given up on events that are filled with wannabes and info you could find in fifteen minutes with Google, but you still want resources and friendly folks you can learn from're querying, you're submitting, but you don't yet have the street-cred of publication

...then you might be an intermediate writer.

Interested? If this is what you've been waiting for all your life, or even something you'd like to stop by and check out, please comment here or drop a line to me at dm6psn9b7q AUTON snkmail DALEK com (replace the obvious alien invaders with the appropriate punctuation), just so we can get a rough head-count for planning purposes. Any questions or observations, ditto.
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Possible Panels for 4th Street 2014 [Mar. 31st, 2014|10:32 pm]

Hey, everybody!

Fourth Street is a few months away now, and as is our habit, we wanted to run the panel ideas we've been kicking around past y'all.

As ever, the only guaranteed panel topic is...

Another Panel - Have you ever had a moderator close down a tangent that seemed as interesting as the panel at hand with "That's another panel"? Well, Another Panel is where we follow up on those tangents and side conversations.

We usually only have schedule space for 9-10 panels, plus Another Panel, so we're definitely interested in hearing which of these topics you would most like to see.

Panel TopicsCollapse )


Member-suggested panels:

Anxiety and its Influences - How our fears and worries affect our work and what we can do about it.

Crafting the Paragraph - either as a supplement or addition to the "Crafting the Sentence" panel.

Strength, Competence, and Weakness - What factors feed into how we depict characters' strengths and weaknesses? How do the lines around competence and its lack get drawn? By genre? By reader?

Gesticulation - Gesture conveys meaning and cultural difference as much as the spoken word, but often we don't see more than nods, shrugs, and the occasional eyebrow. When we do read gesture, what do we like, what do we hate, and what is physiologically impossible?

Becoming the Establishment - There's a tendency in fantasy for pros to imagine they're young turks long after they cease to be. For those of us who were neo-pros in the '00s and have become more established, how did that transition go? What are some things hungry young writers should know about that transition, and how things have changed generally?

Let us know what you think, and if you have any suggestions of your own.
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4th Street 2014 [Nov. 10th, 2013|05:06 pm]

Registration is finally open.  I hope I'll see you there.
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2013 mentioned book list [Jun. 29th, 2013|05:18 pm]


Cathy and I have assembled our book notes from the campout, and added the first round of links. (I will be adding links to other booksellers today and tomorrow.) If we missed something that you want us to add, please comment and let me know! If we have something wrong - please comment and let me know!

(This is not a complete list of every book mentioned - these are the ones Cathy managed to type before the power went out, and I managed to decipher out of my handwritten notes afterwards.)
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without reason [Jun. 28th, 2013|10:31 pm]

I was looking for this poem to read at the storytelling evening, but could not recall enough keywords to google it up. Later flippings-through of my Milosz collection turned it up, though, so I thought I'd share:

Czeslaw Milosz

A valley and above it forests in autumn colors.
A voyager arrives, a map led him here.
Or perhaps memory. Once, long ago, in the sun,
When the first snow fell, riding this way
He felt joy, strong, without reason,
Joy of the eyes. Everything was the rhythm
Of shifting trees, of a bird in flight,
Of a train on the viaduct, a feast of motion.
He returns years later, has no demands.
He wants only one, most precious thing:
To see, purely and simply, without name,
Without expectations, fears, or hopes,
At the edge where there is no I or not-I.

South Hadley, 1985.
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Quotes from the campout [Jun. 25th, 2013|09:55 pm]

I take notes at convention panels. It's a character defect, but it does sometimes come in handy. The following are random funny quotes that I was able to decipher.

Note: I don't claim that these are exact quotes, or that I have attributed them to the correct people. Since I took over the book list when the con went dark, I missed more than usual. If you did catch who said it, or want to claim responsibility - leave a comment and I'll update the post.

Quotes!Collapse )
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War for the Oaks photo project. [Jun. 16th, 2013|09:20 pm]

Hello Fourth Streeters!

While we're all getting ready for the convention, I'm in the middle of a big spring project: taking photos of people reading War for the Oaks in locations from the book. See and

I was originally hoping to be done by now, but it has rained and rained, and I thought for a while the convention's Journeys theme was going to involve building an ark and collecting two of every animal. So I'm going to be doing some work on it around Fourth Street now that it's occasionally clear out, and I thought I would ask people to participate. Those from Minneapolis or in early can participate in a group shot on Wednesday evening at 8pm at Como Conservatory. There are also a bunch of individual locations still available that we can schedule at other times - there's a link in the first post up there. My schedule's likely to be pretty Tbusy during the convention itself, but I will try to fit in as many as possible, and it will be easier for anyone who's around longer than the programming lasts.

Thanks everyone,
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Possible Panels for 4th Street 2013 [May. 2nd, 2013|03:01 pm]

Hey, all!

Fourth Street is coming up in just under two months here, and we wanted to let you see some of the panel topics we're hoping will spark conversations this year.

As ever, the only guaranteed panel topic is...

Another Panel - Have you ever had a moderator close down a tangent that seemed as interesting as the panel at hand with "That's another panel"? Well, Another Panel is where we follow up on those tangents and side conversations.

We typically only have schedule space for ~9 panels, plus Another Panel, so not all of these will make it into the schedule, but we're definitely interested in hearing which of these topics you're most interested in. (And yes, this is why some of these overlap a bit with other topics on the list.)

The theme of this year's Writer's Seminar is journeys, so this year's list starts with three journey-themed panels...

More panels than you can shake a stick at...Collapse )

Do let us know what you think!
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