Archive for August, 2015

Utah Auditions for A Night of Blacker Darkness

Saturday, August 29th, 2015

As you may have heard: my sister and I have adapted my book A NIGHT OF BLACKER DARKNESS into a play! And we’re presenting two productions of it this Halloween, one at Tennessee Wesleyan College in Athens, and one at Utah Valley University in Orem.

And we want YOU to be in them :)

I posted a link to the TN auditions two weeks ago, and those auditions have come and gone and we have an incredible cast. The UT auditions are just a few days away, on September 1 and 2, so if you’re interested please come and try out! This is a UVU production, but we’re opening the cast to the entire community: anyone who wants to audition is more than welcome, and we’d love to get as wide a range of people as we can. Here’s the information:

Tuesday, September 1: Auditions will be held at BYU, 4pm to 6pm, in room F-556 in the HFAC (Harris Fine Arts Center).

Wednesday, September 2: Auditions will be held at UVU, 4pm to 6pm, in GT 631 (aka “The White Box”).

1) Come prepared with a 1-minute comedic monologue.
2) Call backs will be on Saturday, September 5, at 10am at UVU.
3) The show will be the week of Halloween, Wednesday through Saturday, with TWO shows on Halloween.
4) We will perform in the Ragan Theatre on the UVU campus.
5) Rehearsals will be at 6-10 pm Monday through Friday, and 10am-1pm on Saturday, every week until we open.
6) If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the directors via email: Scott Twitchell ( and/or Landon Kraczek (

We will be casting the following parts:
1) Frederick Whithers, a Convict
2) John Keats, a Poet
3) Mary Shelley, a Novelist
4) Gwendolyn Gaddie, a Liar
5) Percival Gaddie, a Banker
6) Colin Gaddie, a More Important Banker
7) Inspector Tristan Herring, a Vampire Hunter
8) Chief Constable Barrow, a Chief Constable
9) Winston, a Carriage Driver
10) Sable, a Vampire
11) Gustave, a Gravedigger
12) Mr. Spilsbury, a Mortician
13) The Late Harold Beard, a Corpse
14) Vampire 1
15) Vampire 2
16) Vampire 3
17) Vampire 4
18) Constables

Not that you need another Hugo commentary, but…

Sunday, August 23rd, 2015

Last night I posted this on Twitter and facebook:
“The Puppies obviously care a lot about the fiction they like. That’s good: they should use that passion to establish an award of their own.”

My friend Dan Willis responded with this:
“And here I thought the Hugos said for years that they were a fan award, representing the best fiction SF had to offer.”

I realized that my post sounded pretty exclusionary, which was not my intention. The Hugos ARE a fan award, and anyone can nominate and vote, and that needs to happen more, not less. My comments were mostly directed to the Rabid Puppy group, whose leader has stated unequivocally that he doesn’t want to change the Hugos, he wants to destroy them. Even Brad Torgerson has said in interviews that he doesn’t care about the award. They don’t like the way the award is being handled, or the kind of fiction it tends to celebrate, so I think it makes the most sense to take that energy and start celebrate the kind of fiction they do like–to creat something positive instead of tearing down something else.

It would be awesome if a single award represented the best that all science fiction had to offer. The Hugos certainly don’t: their refusal to consider most YA or tie-in fiction is a good example, and yes, they tend (at present) to swing fairly liberal and reward certain Chosen Ones. But the thing is, I don’t think a single award CAN represent the entirety of science fiction. That’s simply too big of a tent. The Hugo, and arguably every award ever, has an inherent bias, and that bias changes over time but it’s there, and it will always be there. If the Puppies want to celebrate old school, spaceships and ray-guns SF, as many of them claim, yay. More power to them–I like old school spaceship and ray-guns. So turn your creative energy and your obvious passion toward celebrating the fiction you love, instead of gaming and attacking and destroying an award that other people love. That way we actually gain something from this–two something’s, actually, because there would be two awards–instead of just losing everything and making people angry and sad.

I don’t want to exclude anyone from the Hugo: it should be, and needs to be, a fan-driven award. But the fans driving it need to be people who care about it. If people spent more time supporting the things they care about, and less time fighting over what they don’t like, the world would be a much, much happier place.

My WorldCon Schedule

Wednesday, August 19th, 2015

I’m going to WorldCon tomorrow! And you can come and see me at these many fine events:


11:00 – 12:15
Room 300C (CC)
Writing Excuses Recording
Sit in on recording of the popular podcast Writing Excuses
Brandon Sanderson, Howard Tayler, Dan Wells

15:00 – 15:45
Room 302AB (CC)
Building a Better Tomorrow
Young adult science fiction is thriving, presenting an array of possible futures for humanity. While YA SF seems to be taking off, many of those stories feature dark futures. Why might teens be drawn to these types of settings that feature dystopic settings? Will there be a brighter or better tomorrow for us?
Laura Anne Gilman (M), Troy Bucher, Dan Wells, Fonda Lee

16:30 – 17:00
Room 303B (CC)
Reading – Dan Wells


10:00 – 10:45
Room 303A (CC)
Podcasts for Young Adults
Adults love podcasts and podcasting, but what about teens? Is there a market for YA podcasts and where can kids find cool new content? What topics, guests and issues should podcasts for younger listeners address? What about kids who want to create their own podcasts? Your in luck! Our panelists will also share tips for teens who want to create their own podcasts.
Mur Lafferty (M), Jason Snell, Dan Wells

13:00 – 13:45
Room 401C (CC)
The Future of Video Games
Video games continue to evolve in many ways: sophistication, emersion of the player, story telling, graphics, and platforms, to name just a few. What’s next in the evolution of video games.
Catherynne M. Valente (M), Trina Marie Phillips, Maurine Starkey, Dan Wells, Warren Frey

16:00 – 16:45
Grand Ballroom: Salon III (Doubletree)
SpoCon Presents: Sub-Genre Games
Are you deep for dystopia? Crazy for cyberpunk? Feverent for urban faerie? Soft on steampunk? We’re pitting ten sub-genres against each-other to see which should shed its “sub” prefix and become a fully-fledged genre alongside the towers of Fantasy and Science Fiction. Does YOUR favorite sub-genre have what it takes to stand alone?
Jessica Rising (M), Tim Martin (M), Taiyo Fujii, Caren Gussoff, Frog Jones, Nick Mamatas, Alan Smale, Kaye Thornbrugh, Dan Wells


11:00 – 11:45
Hall B (CC)

Eric Flint, Eileen Gunn, Elizabeth Anne Hull, Walidah Imarisha, Cat Rambo, Dan Wells

12:00 – 12:45
Room 202B-KK3 (CC)
Kaffee Klatche – Dan Wells
Limited to 10, requires advance sign-up (online signup enabled until 6am on Sat 8/22). Coffee and snacks available for sale on the 2nd floor.