Saturday, April 17, 2010

women in fantasy literature

Have you guys heard about the Sirens festival? It's a (pretty new, but rocking) annual conference in Vail, Colorado that is dedicated to women in fantasy--women authors of fantasy and the representation of women in fantasy novels. (Each year, there's a theme--this year it's faeries.) If you're in for a weekend in Colorado October 7-10, keep this possibility in mind--it sounds like one heck of a party.

I'm as interested in the conference as I am because a friend of mine keeps talking about it. The extraordinary Faye, who has spent the last three months patiently teaching me about fantasy and Young Adult literature, attended last year (here's her write-up of her experience) and got so involved that she's on the board this year.

The conference draws a range of authors, from emerging authors to really heavy hitters (last year, Kristin Cashore and Tamora Pierce... this year, Holly Black and Marie Brennan, among others.) According to Faye, there was some really extraordinary programming, panel discussions, etc.

For more information about this year, see here. They are still accepting proposals, so if you're a faery expert and have an idea for programming, check this out. For yet more info, Faye tells me there's a live chat from 2-4 pm today EST here, if you want to ask any questions of the organizers.

I am very, very interested in the conference, both as a reader and as an acquisitions editor. I have never been to Colorado but am very seriously considering. I'd like to hear stories from anyone who's ever been before. Also, please let me know if you're planning on going! This offers great blogfriendmatchmaking potential.

24 comments:

Horserider said...

Oooo I wish i was closer to Colorado :( Maybe I can make it happen...

Pamala Knight said...

OMG this sounds awesome! I might have to start the advance stealth planning to leave the firefighter and offspring to themselves and sneak off to Colorado. I'm a big fan of fantasy and since my own writing is more fantasy with strong romantic elements rather than straight romance, I'm very keen to go.

If I can swing it I'll let you know. Thanks for the tip.

Lydia Sharp said...

Wish I could go. :(

Side point: I love that you blog on the weekends.

MeganRebekah said...

Wow. Definitely makes me wish I lived closer!
Darn Florida for being so far from all the fun stuff.

Lisa Blandford said...

Okay, so being from Colorado, not only should the conference be intriguing, but the fact that it's in VAIL will make it amazing as well!

I'm not a fantasy writer or reader, but its sounds awesome, just the same. Anyone that attends should report back on their thoughts.

writtenwyrdd said...

Oooh! Sounds cool! I hadn't heard of it but shall now bookmark and consider it. I was planning on trying to attend the World Fantasy con in San Diego in 2011, but this one might be even better for my first convention.

emmiefisher said...

I never new about this before! I live in Colorado so it wouldn't be too hard for me to get there. I really wish I could afford to go this year, but I think I will definitely make plans for next year. Though the theme this year makes me salivate. Thanks for sharing!

Kay said...

Thanks for the heads-up. Nice to know there's another convention beside Denver's. I live in CO, and had never heard of the Sirens before. I'm seriously thinking of going ... once I learn how much the rooms cost.

At least, no one will have to fight the skiing traffic when they go.

Amy said...

Hi!

I went to Sirens last year (well, I had to, since I'm one of the chairs), and I thought it was a blast! I've never had such a great time talking everything women and everything fantasy with smart, fun, friendly attendees -- and I can't wait to do it again. We had authors and scholars last year who had great perspectives, but also lots of readers and fans who were just as vital to the conversation. Please don't be shy!

Programming, by the way, doesn't have to be about faeries, and a lot of it won't be. :) Anything pertaining to women and fantasy flies, and I hope your readers will think about submitting! Roundtables in particular are a great way to jump in, since you only need questions to lead a discussion.

I really hope to see some of you there! :) If you ever have any questions, just try the website or even e-mail us at info at sirensconference dot org.

Suzanne said...

Thank you for passing this on-
I hadn't heard of Sirens before this post. I read and write fantasy, I live in Colorado and it's over my birthday weekend. I think I'm going.

Deb Salisbury said...

Ooooh! I wish I could go. It sounds wonderful!

Skyler White said...

Oh, dang it! That sounds way too cool to miss. Think I'm going to have to throw my hat into that ring. And here I was thinking I'd finalized my travel plans through the new year.

Sarita Rucker said...

I so wanna go! But I'm sure I'll be too busy with school.

Stephanie L. McGee said...

Oh, I so wish I could have gone last year. I love Tamora Pierce. If I can get my life settled into a state of relative normalcy maybe I can swing a road trip out there. I'm only 8 or so hours away from Denver so it shouldn't be too much longer than that, right?

Jennifer Ambrose said...

Eeeee! This is the culmination of what I'm most passionate about: faeries, fantasy lit, women authors, and the representation of women in fantasy lit!!! Wow. I seriously may have NO CHOICE but to attend.

I'm seriously thinking about attending and will tweet you if I decide to go. Moonie, thank you SO MUCH for posting about this!

Kate Evangelista said...

Oh the sadness of living an ocean away. I want to attend but I can't. Sobs.

faye said...

Just a note to Stephanie--Tamora Pierce is planning to attend again this year! She's not a guest of honour, but it says here on her schedule that she's coming: http://www.tamora-pierce.com/schedule.html

*squees*

cindy said...

i hope to attend and do a multicultural panel on fey and folklore! *fingers crossed*

Anonymous said...

I won't attend any meeting that displays such blatant sexist segregation.

T.D. Newton said...

Please don't take this question in the same context as that last Anonymous comment...

Are men even invited to this thing? My debut novel has a very strong female protagonist, as does my current WIP, and it would be great to chat about character traits. Plus, I'm a big Marie Brennan fan. :)

moonrat said...

TD--yes!! It's a celebration of Women in Fantasy--why the heck shouldn't men celebrate, too? ;)

Actually, their mission specifically states that the conference is about female characters OR authors--they're deliberately leaving the invite open for everybody.

T.D. Newton said...

Thanks moonrat, I was just reading that on the FAQs. The conf is right before my anniversary, so I may be able to talk the wife into going (considering we're in Denver).

sbjames said...

Faeries and Fantasy. (you mean, faeries aren't real?) I so want to go! I'm looking into this. Thanks Moonrat.

David R. Slayton said...

If you come through Denver, let me know. You'll want to check the Tattered Cover bookstore and I'd be happy to buy you a drink at Encore, their cool little restaurant.