It’s April, and that means it’s time for the Williamson Lectureship! The Portales News-Tribune has the scoop here.
I’ve posted before about Jack Williamson and the Lectureship held in his honor. The Lectureship always delivers a grand time, so I’m excited to get to visit my friends in Portales over the next few days. This year is a little bit different, because I’ve been asked to deliver the keynote address during the Friday luncheon. I think I’m more nervous about this public-speaking arrangement than I was about my thesis defense. In general this is something at which I’m fairly competent, but I feel extra pressure to repay the Lectureship Committee’s kindness and generosity with a first-class effort.
More information below the cut.
This year’s theme is Science Fantasy: Into the Next Decade. Get the full schedule of festivities here.
The 34th Annual Williamson Lectureship starts tomorrow afternoon — Thursday, April 8 — with a panel for young writers at the Portales Public Library, headed by Connie Willis and Steven Gould… two authors whose boots I am not fit to lick.
Then, that evening, Walter Jon Williams, Melinda Snodgrass, and I will be reading excerpts from our latest works. I’ll be reading a few pages from an actual copy of Bitter Seeds. Not just any few pages, either, but a few pages that have (almost) never been read in public before. Whee!
After our readings, it’s off to one of Portales’s premiere dining establishments for the customary raucous dinner.
The Lectureship luncheon begins at 11:45 on Friday, April 9. I’ll do my best to say something intelligent. Also to keep my remarks short, because I think what we all want to hear (myself included) is Sean Shepherd’s talk about the proposal he delivered to NASA about a novel method for removing space debris. All of this overseen, of course, by Mistress of Ceremonies Connie Willis, which alone makes it worth the price of admission. Maybe this year she’ll make fun of my book title again! (It’s an honor to be teased by Connie Willis.)
After the luncheon, there’s time for a stop at the DQ (another lectureship tradition!) before the afternoon panels begin. Come hear a motley assortment of writers, publishers, and other fine minds share their thoughts on Avatar, shared universes, and the future of SF and fantasy.
Saturday, of course, is reserved for the traditional trek to the Williamson Ranch, which is, in my opinion, the highlight of the weekend.