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Vericon Friday

HRSFA's con. I went to the first one, and now I'm going to the eleventh. I volunteered this time, and got assigned to the anime room. Kudos to the anime overseer, things were all set up for me. Though the volunteer after me got the challenge of trying to play a 4G MKV of the second Eva remake movie. I don't know if they ever succeeded, they hadn't after 20 minutes. Too big for the taped-together laptop or too exotic a format for Windows, I dunno. I showed the first two episodes of Paranoia Agent -- that was weird -- and Gankutsuou. Then con suite, then a YA fiction panel, con suite again. No one was doing open gaming, perhaps because Brandon Sanderson was being mobbed, so I watched most of King of Thorn in the anime room. Sadly we got kicked out shortly before the ending.

YA panel notes, dumped from my phone.

YA not genre segregated (until paranormal romance explosion)
Sarah Smith says better and more carefully edited
Brandon Sanderson says YA not edited for content, while middle grade
still is. (sex, swearing)
though Asaro says she ran into editor trouble for 14 year olds getting married
and having sex.
Scholastic like the Disney of book publishing, very strict
Harder markets to break into, lower lows but much higher highs
genre supposedly makes money than adult's fiction, more corporate
romance readers early adopters for ebooks. no embarassing covers,
already consider the books disposable
A lot of boys stop reading around 5th or 6th grade. Brandon got cured
by a forced reading of Hambly in 8th grade.
"aberrant male" category, nerdy, self id as older, don't mind girl
Brandon went from Hambly to McCaffrey to Rawn to Eddings. "men can't
write epic fantasy"
Asaro coaches a bunch of homeschooled students, says they aren't as
gender stereotyped in behavior.
Brandon thinks Shannara and Belgariad would be YA today
boys having d&d clubs, nerd id, no social role for girls to admit
reading fantasy (hey, Nogizaka)
Disney found boys wouldn't go to Princess and Frog; new Rapunzel got
changed to Tangled and given equal sex marketing
Cover whitewashing, Sarah Smith covers has a biracial char buried in fire
"dystopian" the SF label for YA. Hunger Games pitched by publisher as
"like fantasy but in the future"
huge new YA books are SF: Matched, This is across the universe, Divergence
Twilight super clean, no drink sex swear
Absent parents trope
YA, kids choose the books. Middle school books doled out by gatekeepers.
YA rules: shorter, faster start, no lollygagging. I think of James's "no
blocking" of Rocket Girls plot
Smith says diff betw bad sf and bad fantasy bigger than at good end
kids supposedly like reading protags a year or two older than them
audience member started "harry potter alliance" of people acting like
harry potter.
me: having social organizers base their lives on their fiction beats
fanfic and porn
sanderson does dig at goodkind, author who gives answers not just asks
there's a wheel of time charity organization

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Damien Sullivan

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May 2018


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