Gen Con: The Once And Future Podcast’s First Live Event

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Image: The Once and Future Podcast

Gen Con is coming up in *gulp* about a week, and yes, it’s about that time. Time to look at my schedule, time to start freaking out a bit. How am I going to get everything done in time? I’m a volunteer on staff for the Writer’s Symposium there, I’m on several author panels, and I’m going to be doing publicity work. I’m going into panic mode!

What’s the cure for that? Looking at my schedule again and seeing what awesome things I’ll be involved in. And this year, the thing I’m looking forward to the most? The Once and Future Podcast’s live show!

The Once and Future Podcast is possibly one of the best kept secrets of the science fiction and fantasy podcasting world. Sure, other podcasts have bestselling authors on them, though I think O&FP goes a bit above and beyond with programming. Past guests have included Patrick Rothfuss (the Kingkiller Chronicles), Laurell K. Hamilton (Anita Blake Series), Amber Benson (actress on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and urban fantasy author), Jim Butcher (Dresden Files series), Charlaine Harris (Sookie Stackhouse series), Lev Grossman (The Magicians series), Diana Rowland (White Trash Zombie series), Faith Hunter (Jane Yellowrock series), and many more.

But programming is just the half of it. The podcast itself is something that guests enjoy being on because it is less like an interview and more like sitting at the bar at your favorite convention and chatting over some brew or coffee. Listeners get to hear them talk about things that might not come up in normal interviews, and get to have a glimpse of their favorite authors as real people. It is the perfect blend of snarky fun and Yoda-like wisdom for authors and readers alike.

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Image: The Once and Future Podcast

At Gen Con, for the first time ever, the Once and Future Podcast is going to be doing a mega-cast recording in front of a live audience–and I am set as the moderator! There will be lots of laughs, shared author-ly knowledge, and prizes. Not only that, but some of my favorite author people are scheduled to be there as guests! Who? Well…

Margaret Weis. That’s right, author of many Dragonlance novels, editor, game designer, and one of my all-time inspirations, is going to be on the live O&FP panel! Oh, the memories I have of hiding her books in my desk to read during history class.

Michael J. Sullivan. I’ve worked with Michael before, since he wrote a story for the Blackguards anthology from Ragnarok Publications. He has just finished with a killer Kickstarter to support the third book in his Riyria epic fantasy series, which crossed the $73k mark! Michael is a wonderful author and an awesome guy, and I look forward to meeting him in person.

Wesley Chu. Award-winning author of the Tao series from Angry Robot books and Time Salvager from Tor, I’ve run into Wes a few times at conventions now, and look forward to seeing him again at Gen Con this year. He’s a great author, nice guy, and has excellent taste in shoes.

Kameron Hurley. Multi Hugo Award-winning author of The Mirror Empire and more, Kameron is someone I admire and respect in the genre, and I haven’t had a chance to get to know her nearly as much as I would like. She promotes her books like a boss, never being pushy about it, which is something that I, as a publicist. always appreciate. And she is a reasonable yet present voice supporting diversity in the genre, and I always enjoy seeing her perspective on Twitter.

Michael R. Underwood. Not only is Mike Underwood an author of books that combine magic with gaming, but he’s the sales and marketing manager over at Angry Robot books. He’s funny, witty, and I always love seeing him at conventions.

Aaron Rosenberg. I’ve met Aaron a couple times, and know him from his tie-in novel work (Star Trek, Warhammer, X Files). He also writes games and is the author of the bestselling DuckBob series. He will be a fellow author of mine in the Champions of Aetaltis anthology coming later this year!

Stephen Blackmoore. Stephen is…well, in his own words, “author of books, short stories, essays, blog posts, grocery lists, dirty jokes, drunken ramblings, inappropriate comments, occasional brilliant insights and other such sundry items.” I’ve been online friends with him for a while, and really look forward to seeing him in person.

And then there is the host of this grand endeavor, urban fantasy author Anton Strout. I met Anton in person in what feels like a lifetime ago, when I was slightly intoxicated and wanted to get him to sign my Simon Canderous novels. Since then I’ve worked and talked with him online for years and I can genuinely say he is one of my favorite people ever.

I absolutely love the Once and Future Podcast. It has supplied me with more moments of inspiration and encouragement with my writing over the past few years than I can count. I’m honored and so happy to be a part of the live Gen Con Mega-Cast this year, and I really hope to see many of you readers there! I’ll be sure to post an update after I return.

The Once and Future Podcast Live Mega-Cast event will happen on Thursday, July 30th, 5-7 PM in room 241 of the Indianapolis Convention Center. You can register for a FREE ticket here.

Melanie R. Meadors is the author of fantasy and science fiction stories where heroes don’t always carry swords and knights in shining armor often lose to nerds who study their weaknesses. She’s been known to befriend wandering garden gnomes, do battle with metal-eating squirrels, and has been called a superhero on more than one occasion. Her work has been published in Circle Magazine, The Wheel, and Prick of the Spindle, and she was a finalist in the 2014 Jim Baen Memorial Science Fiction Contest. Melanie is also a freelance author publicist and publicity/marketing coordinator for both Ragnarok Publications and Mechanical Muse. She blogs regularly for GeekMom and The Once and Future Podcast. Her short story “A Whole-Hearted Halfling” is in the anthology Champions of Aetaltis, available April 12, 2016.