Oh my! This isn’t our first convention back, but it is the biggie! Both excited and a little anxious to be returning to Balticon after two long years away. I can’t tell you how much we are looking forward to seeing our fan fam after so long.  Mike McPhail is easing his way back into the circuit and coming just for support and enjoyment this year, but Danielle has a rather nice schedule that leaves her plenty of time to both man the dealer’s table and socialize, the particulars of which you can find below.

Danielle Ackley-McPhail


8:30 PM    Homeland
How to Incorporate Critique (In-person)
Brandon Ketchum (moderator), Geoffrey A. Landis, Adeena Mignogna, Wen Spencer, Danielle Ackley-McPhail
Someone’s read your work in progress… and they have feedback. How do you know what should be incorporated, and how can you do it so that changes feel consistent with what you’ve written? How can you deal with conflicting suggestions? How do you tell the difference between impartial constructive feedback and a reader’s personal preference?


2:30 PM     Homeland
Writing the Fight Scene   
John Appel (moderator), D.A. Xiaolin Spires, Brandon Ketchum, Wen Spencer, Danielle Ackley-McPhail
A good fight scene can improve the pacing of your novel, raise the stakes for your character, and add immediacy to your writing. But how do you do it well? How do you determine what weapons your character would use and how do you convincingly portray that? Short of studying martial arts for ten years and achieving a black belt, how do you research the combat skills so essential to a pulse-pounding action scene?


10:00 AM     Homeland
Sustaining Tension in Your Writing     
Elektra Hammond (moderator), Lezli Robyn, Brandon Ketchum, Nancy Springer, Danielle Ackley-McPhail
Narrative works maintain audience interest through the buildup and release of tension, but how do creators balance this with the requirements of character development and plot construction? How can tension be maintained when audiences can see how many pages (or minutes) are left, or are familiar enough with genre conventions to know what to expect?
11:30 AM     St. George
Readings: Christie Meierz and Danielle Ackley-McPhail
Christie Meierz, Danielle Ackley-McPhail
The authors will read from their new and upcoming works.
7:00 PM       Baltimore Ballroom A
eSpec Book Launch 
Carol Gyzander, John L. French, Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Hildy Silverman, Michelle D. Sonnier, Robert E. Waters
Please join us as we celebrate the release of our most recent titles: The Clockwork Solution by Michelle D. Sonnier, Chessie At Bay by John L. French, Daire’s Devils by Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Eyes of the Wolf by Robert E. Waters, Even in the Grave edited by James Chambers and Carol Gyzander, and Devilish & Divine edited by John L. French and Danielle Ackley-McPhail (with stories by stories by Robert E. Waters, Michelle D. Sonnier, and Hildy Silverman). There will be authors, books, homemade cookies, fun, and prizes! (Just a little different than the launches we have a reputation for throwing, but we hope you will come to help us celebrate just the same.)                              


1:00 PM      Guilford
I Sold a Novel! Now What? 
Gail Z. Martin (moderator), Joshua Bilmes, Danielle Ackley-McPhail
So you have sold a novel, either through a traditional publisher or via the self-publishing route. Now what? How do you make sure that people buy (and read!) your work? We’ll talk marketing, publicity, touring, and other ways of infecting the public with your mind virus.                     

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