“41.6?” I can hear someone calling out from the nosebleed seats. “What the heck is that about?”
So, it’s like this. The annual Shore Leave convention has been navigating some tricky obstacles over the past…what? Fifteen or sixteen months? At least? The 2020 show was supposed to have been Shore Leave 42 but when it morphed into a virtual event thanks to COVID restrictions on mass gatherings, the online edition of the con was dubbed “Shore Leave 41.5,” with the expectation that this year’s show would be given the official “42” designation, and we could celebrate Life, the Universe, and Everything as originally intended.
With COVID restrictions and guidelines lingering far enough into 2021, a decision had to be made at some point a few months back, and with the information available to them at the time the valiant members of the con’s committee made the hard decision to keep things within the virtual realm again this year. Hence, “Shore Leave 41.6,” and we all hope we can be back together in the real world for 2022’s show, where we really can celebrate, Life, the Universe, Everything, and everything else we’re not getting to do this year.
And so it goes.
Anyway, a pretty stuffed schedule has been put together to fill out the con’s two days of programming for this coming Saturday and Sunday (July 10th and 11th), and I glance at the doc sent my way tells me I’ll be on four discussion panels – three on Saturday and one on Sunday. These and all of the other panels will be available for viewing via Zoom, Discord, or other “webinar” platforms, with links and such to be provided as we get closer to the con. I’d suggest bookmarking the Shore Leave Programming Page so you don’t have to keep hunting for such things, as that’s where you’ll find all the juicy deets.
Meanwhile, here’s a rundown of the mischief and shenanigans for which I’ve enlisted this weekend:
(All Times Eastern)
Saturday, July 10th
“The New Age of Star Trek” – 11am-12pm: Join the authors as they discuss the new age of Star Trek we’re living in, and talk about Discovery, Picard, Lower Decks, Strange New Worlds, and Prodigy, and how these new series connect to the legacy series and carry the torch for new generations of fans. Moderated by Keith R.A. DeCandido, and I’ll be joining fellow authors Derek Tyler Attico, Kirsten Beyer, Kelli Fitzpatrick, and David Mack.
“40+ Years Later: Is Star Trek: The Motion Picture Better Than We Recall?” – 5pm-6pm: The Motion Picture: Better than we recall, or worse? The answer is “Yes,” but sure; let’s talk about it for an hour. Moderated by Howard Weinstein, and I’m hanging with fellow guests Derek Tyler Attico, T.A. Chafin, Kevin Dilmore, and David Mack.
“Star Trek Adventures Roleplaying Game Update” – 7pm-8pm: Modiphius Entertainment’s Star Trek Adventures RPG heads into its fifth year. Check in for the latest news on current and upcoming releases and Q&A with the STA project manager and several STA writers. Moderated by Jim Johnson, and I’m joining fellow STA contributors Derek Tyler Attico, Christopher L. Bennett, Kelli Fitzpatrick, and Scott Pearson.
(All Times Eastern)
Sunday, July 11th
“What’s New In Star Trek Literature” – 3pm-4pm: Authors of current and upcoming Star Trek titles discuss their work. This is where we’ll chat about the various novels and other publications coming out over the next several months, and also discuss what was published since last year’s show. Moderated by Scott Pearson, I’ll be there along with Christopher L. Bennett, Kirsten Beyer, David Mack, John Jackson Miller, and James Swallow.
One programming note for this Sunday panel: I’m also doing my volunteer thing at the National World War I Museum and Memorial that morning, so I’ll be racing home to get back in time for the panel. Worry not, though: the team sitting in for this one can more than cover for my silly ass if I happen to be running a few minutes late.
And there we go! Many, many thanks to the good folks at Shore Leave – in particular, Inge Heyer and Aaron Rosenberg – for navigating the thankless task of organizing the programming and making sure the rest of us make it to our appointed places at the proper time. If any of us show up without pants or whatever, you can rest assured that won’t be Inge or Aaron’s fault.
(Okay, we might still blame Aaron, but not Inge. Never Inge.)
I hope to “see” a bunch of your smiling faces sometime during the coming weekend, and I’m very much looking forward to an in-person con next summer!