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My very first Eastercon! Or, as Gareth described it, “Glastonbury for nerds.” I’m super excited to be going (though it has kind of crept up on me a bit with all the house moving fun (don’t ask…), and really looking forward to catching up with people I don’t see very often and meeting new people.

I’m on a whole bunch of programming – Innominate are running a disability track that I volunteered for, and I’m also doing a workshop session on preparing your manuscript for submission which I hope people will be interested in – last time I did it people seemed to get a lot out of it, so fingers crossed.

Here’s where you can find me :

Preparing Your Manuscript for Submission

Friday 16:00 – 17:00, Surrey (Hilton NEC Metropole)

As the Acquisitions Editor for indie publishers Kristell Ink, Joanne Hall sees a LOT of submissions, and quite a few mistakes! She will offer advice on the process of preparing a cover and a query letter (and explaining why they’re not the same thing), talk you through formatting a manuscript, and let you in on a few secrets that might help you on the route to publication! (bring paper and a pen)
If anyone wants to sign up for this and is willing to put themselves forward as a guinea pig please contact me via the website form or email – I promise to be gentle, but firm!

Author Reading: Marion Pitman; Joanne Hall

Saturday 10:00 – 11:00, Wellington (Hilton NEC Metropole)

Marion Pitman and I will be reading for 25-30 minutes each. If anyone has anything specific that they want me to read from give me a shout and I’ll see if I can accommodate you. Or I might do a Twitter poll.

If you don’t already follow me on Twitter that’s where I talk most of my nonsense – you can find me at @hierath77

Mental Health and Super Heroes

Sunday 10:00 – 11:00, Gladstone (Hilton NEC Metropole)

Super heroes, mutant powers, and curses. Whether Hulk’s anger or Elsa’s frozen-driven isolation there is no shortage of characters whose experience what may be interpreted as mental health problems. Our panel explore these representations, asking questions including what makes some work as a force for good and others offensive. 

Potential Trigger Warning
Due to the sensitive topic this session may be triggering.

Joanne Hall, Ali Baker , D.A Lascelles (M), Anna Smith-Spark, Tlanti

Anna Smith-Spark is totally my panel buddy – and she’s amazing on panels and well worth listening to, so you should come to this. She’ll be making smart comments and I’ll probably be talking about Batman…

Writing with Disabilities, Writing About Disabilities

Sunday 13:00 – 14:00, Gladstone (Hilton NEC Metropole)

Writing about disabilities and being someone with health conditions or disabilities who writes are two sides of a coin that can be tricky to manage. Our panelists have different experience of living with different conditions explore their experiences of writing. They discuss how it influences their work and whether writing influences their own relationship with their health. In turn the panellists extrapolate to consider what writing about disabilities in sf is and is not successful.

Nick Wood, Juliet Kemp, Anna Smith-Spark (M), Joanne Hall, Kevin Elliott

And you should come to this one too if you’re not off having Sunday lunch. On a personal level, as well as the interesting topic I’m excited to meet Juliet Kemp not because of her SF credentials (well, cos of those as well) but also because she wrote Permaculture In Pots and she might be able to tell me how to avoid killing off my mint in such epic fashion….

You can find the full current schedule for Eastercon 2017 here.

When I’m not on panels I will be cheerfully pootling about, so if you see me please don’t hesitate to come up and say hello – I’m shy but I don’t bite!*

*Joanne Harris is going to be there. I’m not her. Sometimes I have to reiterate this to people, even people I know quite well…. We kind of look alike and we have almost the same name and I get mistaken for her a lot, so if you come up and say hi to me try not to be too disappointed when you find out I’ve never met Johnny Depp…