Cleveland ConCoction — My Schedule

Here’s my schedule for Cleveland ConCoction on March 1-3 in Aurora. In addition to the author’s track, the fan-run convention has gaming, cosplayers and more. Link to the entire online program is at the bottom of this post.

Fri      Mar 1     4:00        Villains: More than Just Black Hats (with Cassandra Morgan, Linda Robertson, Troy Maynard, & Vik K Walker)

Sat     Mar 2    11:00       Author Showcase Panel (readings with Cindy A Mathews, Barbara Doran, Rose Withering, and Megan Mackie)

Sat     Mar 2     noon     Author Autograph Session (with the above authors and also Weston Kincade)

Sat     Mar 2     3:00       Bring Your Hooks (bring your first page for sharing and critique! With JW Troemner, Marshall Stephens, Mary Turzillo, and Geoffrey A Landis)

Link to the online convention program:



Cleveland ConCoction 2019

I’ll be participating in this year’s Cleveland ConCoction convention, held March 1-3 in Aurora, Ohio.

This will be the 6th year of the convention, and my third time attending. The fan-run convention has some of everything — including science fiction, gaming, cosplay and a vendors room. It also has my favorite thing, Authors’ Alley, which includes panels, workshops, and readings — list of attending authors is here.

Here’s a link to the convention website, with info about guests and activities. When I know my panel schedule, I’ll post it here.

My Best Fantasy Worlds

Last weekend at Cleveland Concoction I was fortunate enough to be on panels with some interesting authors. My favorite panel was “Best Fantasy Worlds” — because I find the complexities of worldbuilding endlessly fascinating.

The fantasy worlds that we remember tend to be carefully crafted, with lots of attention paid to how its characters — not just the main character — live, work, and travel in them. Some of the treasured fantasy worlds mentioned in the panel were Middle Earth, Narnia, Hogwarts, Discworld, Camelot, Oz, and Earthsea.

I kept thinking about this after the panel, so here are a few other worlds that are special for me:

  • Riverworld. Created by Philip José Farmer, the first book is To Your Scattered Bodies Go. It’s a fictional planet with a long river valley where every human being who ever lived is resurrected, young and healthy again. In the novels, historical figures interact as they travel and try to find out why they’ve been returned to life.
  • Amber. From The Chronicles of Amber, by Roger Zelazny. In the series there are two true worlds, Amber and the Courts of Chaos. Parallel worlds (including Earth), which are only shadows of the two true worlds, lie between them.
  • The world of the Silence Leigh trilogy by Melissa Scott, beginning with Five-Twelfths of Heaven. It feels like science fiction but there’s clearly magic, as Silence, who is a pilot, discovers when she attempts to become the first female magus. There’s also a brilliant system of space travel, and an Empire that relegates women to second-class status that Silence must struggle against. This is a multilayered world, beautifully done. I am seeing online that parts of the original series may have been rewritten, so I’ll clarify that I’m referring to the original books.
  • The world of the Thursday Next novels by Jasper Fforde. These are very funny fantasy novels based in an alternate England which is so closely interwoven with literature that characters can jump into and out of books. There’s a bureaucratic entity called “Jurisfiction” that makes sure the plots of all the novels continue operating properly even after multiple readings. This is a very well-done world, filled with literary allusions and a lot of humor.

If I went downstairs and began looking through my books I could come up with many more, but I’d better stop there. I’m pretty sure most of us have our own favorites. In fact, I think that’s half the pleasure of talking to other readers — sharing our favorite fictional worlds.

Cleveland Concoction 2017

Once again I’m looking forward to a trip to Cleveland in March for Cleveland Concoction! This is a fan-run convention with some of everything — cosplay, gaming, art, a vendors room. It also has Authors’ Alley, which includes panels and workshops with quite a few authors (link to authors’ page here).

The convention runs from March 10-12 at the Cleveland Sheraton Airport hotel. My schedule so far:

Friday, March 10

1:00 pm          Panel: Best Humor in Fantasy

4:00 pm          Panel: Influencing Culture through Fantasy


Saturday, March 11

10:00 am        Panel: Best Fantasy Worlds

2:00 pm          Reading (with Johanna Gribble, Deborah Brown and S Andrew Swann)

3:00 pm          Book signing


If you’re there, stop by and say hi!




Cleveland Concoction 2016


Cleveland Concoction will be at the Cleveland Sheraton Airport Hotel on March 11-13.

This will be my second time at Cleveland Concoction — actually the third year for the convention. This year the con has an expanded Author Track, with more panels for writers and readers of science fiction and fantasy. Looks like a great event for any aspiring genre writers in the Cleveland area!

Also many other guests and gaming, cosplay and more. Check out the info on their website, here.

My panel and reading schedule:


6 pm       Author Showcase (readings, with several other authors)

7 pm       Book Signing (Author Alley)


noon       Panel: Why Villains Matter

2 pm       Panel: Influencing Culture through Science Fiction