Your Mid-September Update
We are now less than a month away from the main event and things are rolling here behind the scenes. We’re excited to see the early bird swag items arrive all over the world, excited to see who’s won Ignyte Awards, excited for the dozens of virtual meetings we’re holding to figure things out (can you do a game show via Zoom? Yes. Yes you can.), just… there’s a lot of excitement here. What we’re trying to do is take advantage of the virtual format to play with some new ideas for content formatting. So not only will attendees have access to the live content, but a repository we have yet to cleverly name containing even more hours of pre-recorded goodies, a digital swag bag filled by some of our friends and partners in publishing, and an interview series with Ignyte’s Ember and Community Award finalists leading up to the event. Let’s get you to some updates.
The doors for FIYAHCON Office Hours are NOW OPEN!
- Our Office Hours hosts have volunteered their time to offer critiques, hold individual Q&A sessions, and accept pitches
- Registration sign-ups for Office Hours will be taken on a first-come, first-serve basis
- Advance submission of application materials will be required for queries and page critiques, follow the submission instructions to be considered
Weekend tickets (that’s the standard convention ticket covering content between 8am on 10/17- 11pm on 10/18) are now SOLD OUT but we expect about a dozen or so to be made available October 1st once we’ve processed refunds for volunteers who may have already bought tickets.
FIYAHCON Opening Ceremonies will be held Friday, October 16th, 7pm-8pm (GMT-4:00), followed by 12 hours of Fringe programming scheduled to accommodate non-U.S. time zones. Tickets to the opening ceremony + Fringe, or “Friday Tickets” are FREE but registration is required.
Already registered for the main event? Then you’re automatically registered for Friday.
Voting for the inaugural Ignyte Awards is now closed. 1,461 ballots were submitted, of which 1,431 were valid. Thank you to everyone who took part in this process. We look forward to celebrating the winners with you Saturday, October 17th at 5pm (GMT -4:00).
We’re highlighting the work of all Ember Award and Community Award finalists in an interview series going live on the website beginning 9/22. Two of these interviews will be posted every week leading up to the main event.
Sign-up for the following workshops will be made available on the website on September 21st with any charged funds going directly to the host:
Start at the Start: The Best Words Get You Read – $Free
Host: Arley Sorg
Story openings – first words, first lines, first paragraphs, first pages – can make the difference between a story sale and a form rejection. Most stories sent to pro venues will be rejected on the basis of the first page or two. A solid opening can buy you a few more pages of read, and maybe even land a personal rejection, if you don’t make the sale. Come share your short story openings and get personal feedback on the first page or two: find out where I’d stop reading and why, or if I’d keep going to the end!
How to Be Edited – $Free
Host: Mark Oshiro
The editorial process for short stories, novellas, and novels is often (weirdly) shrouded in secrecy. What does it mean to get an edit letter? What are developmental edits? What happens when you get an edit you completely disagree with? Young adult and middle grade author Mark Oshiro will run participants through the traditional editorial process with specific examples culled from their own work to help prepare prospective authors for what editing might look like, as well as provide a roadmap to organizing edits upon receiving them.
Kickstart Your Dream Project – $Free
Host: Margot Atwell
Brief Description of Workshop: Whether you’re editing an anthology, launching a magazine, self-publishing your first novel, planning a festival, or something even more fantastic, Kickstarter can help you raise funds and build community to help get your idea off the ground. Margot Atwell, Head of Publishing & Comics at Kickstarter, will work with you to plan your project, sharing best practices and collaborating in a workshop setting. She’ll cover how to build your project, budgeting, promotional plans, and more.
Let’s Play God (But In A Fun Way!) – Worldbuilding for Beginners – $10 USD
Host: Martin Cahill
Worldbuilding can be intimidating for newer writers of science fiction and fantasy; there can feel like there’s so much to work out in any given story, that the actual story can take a backseat to the mechanics of government, magic, history, currency, and more! This 2-3 hour workshop will be dedicated to breaking down the myths of successful worldbuilding, and learning how to refocus your creative energy, so that the world and the story can share the spotlight equally. We’re playing god, and will learn how to think of worldbuilding as a tool for good storytelling in short fiction and novels, not a separate aspect to worry about.
Comics Writing 101 – $20 USD
Host: Suzanne Walker
Everything you wanted to know about writing comics but were afraid to ask! We will cover good script practices, including setting, pacing, and dialogue; how to work and collaborate with artists; and the editorial process.
As we finalize our setup, we’ll be pulling in volunteer Discord moderators and tech facilitators over the next couple of weeks. So if you indicated any interest in those things on your application, your time is coming!
The full event schedule will be made available the first week of October, along with digital swag bags, digital copies of the program booklet, and some interactive content we can’t talk about just yet. Stay tuned!