Programming

Single Track Programming

4th Street has only one programming track, letting everyone at the convention participate in an evolving, multi-day conversation. Each panel is led by participants particularly suited to speak on the panel’s topic, and has a moderator to guide the discussion. Everyone in the room has opportunities throughout the panels to be part of the conversation: asking questions, making comments, and opening new roads of inquiry. Mobile microphones circulate in the audience, and the panel moderator integrates panelist perspectives with the full room’s input.

This year’s programming will be available in the weeks before the convention. If you would like to be on programming, have an idea for a panel, or have a programming question, please email programming@4thstreetfantasy.com

Our current Programming Coordinator is Scott Lynch.

That’s a Different Panel

A longstanding tradition at 4th Street is a closing ad hoc panel on Sunday afternoon, entitled “That’s A Different Panel”. During the weekend, enthusiastic exchange often causes the conversation to veer off-topic – and when that happens, someone will cry “That’s a different panel!” to bring the group back on track. But we don’t let the fascinating diversions get lost: throughout the convention we keep a list of possible topics for the final panel, and on Sunday morning the room as a whole votes on what that “Different Panel” should be, and assembles speakers from the crowd.

Programming Traditions

A well-loved tradition at 4th Street is the ‘titles list’ – every time someone mentions the title of a work, a volunteer writes that title down on a easel pad of paper. By the end of the convention we all have a collective list of recommended reading, watching, and playing to last us the rest of the year – at least!

If you’d like to volunteer to write the titles list for one or more panels, email volunteers@4thstreetfantasy.com, or sign up during registration.

4th Street Workshop: Critique & Critique Groups

The Workshop at 4th Street Fantasy is a one-day intensive exploration of group critique led by professionals in the speculative fiction industry. We begin with a panel discussion on critique & critique groups – discussing the benefits and the perils of group critique and the history of critique methods – before breaking into small groups where participants critique one another’s work under the guidance of one of the panelists.

The Workshop is aimed at writers who are pursuing professional publication of either short or long speculative fiction. Participants are selected on a first-come, first-served basis: this is not an auditioned workshop. After purchasing a workshop ticket, please submit a piece of fiction of no more than 5000 words to workshops@4thstreetfantasy.com. This piece can be a short story or a portion of a longer work.

While repeat participants in the workshop are always welcome, repeat stories are not: please submit a piece that has not been workshopped anywhere before.

This year’s workshop leaders are: John Chu (author, 2014 Best Short Story Hugo winner for “The Water That Falls on You from Nowhere”), Marissa Lingen (author, fiction most recently appearing in Fireside, Analog, Beneath Ceaseless Skies and Uncanny), Arkady Martine (author, short fiction most recently in Uncanny and Fireside, debut novel, A Memory Called Empire, from Tor Books in 2019), and Django Wexler (author, The Shadow Campaigns series and The Forbidden Library series).

The deadline for registering for the Workshop is June 1, 2018.

The Workshop takes place Friday morning from 10:00am to 3:00pm. Registration for the workshop is $50, and there are 24 spaces available. Lunch is provided by the hotel and includes vegetarian and non-vegetarian options. Please email workshops@4thstreetfantasy.com if you have any specific food exclusions.

4th Street Seminar: The Business of Writing
The Seminar at 4th Street Fantasy is an opportunity for aspiring, neo-pro, and intermediate writers to hear about aspects of the speculative fiction industry from professionals who work in it. Ask questions, eat lunch with our panelists, and meet other emerging writers! This year our Seminar theme is The Business of Authoring. Discussion may include (amongst other possibilities) issues around contracts; being a debut author; self-publishing, Patreon/Drip, and being a ‘hybrid author’; games writing, freelancing, and tie-in writing; and all the other ways people make this business work (or fail to).

Previous Seminar leaders have included Holly Black, Lynne Thomas and Michael Damien Thomas, Marissa Lingen, and Elizabeth Bear, amongst many others.

This year’s Seminar leaders will include Max Gladstone (author of the Craft Sequence, most recently Ruin of Angels, and contributor to Bookburners Season 1 and 2), Mary Robinette Kowal (author of the Glamourist Histories, Ghost Talkers, and the forthcoming The Calculating Stars), Kelly McCullough (author of the WebMage and Fallen Blade series; School for Sidekicks; Magic, Madness, & Mischief; and the forthcoming Spirits, Spells, & Snark), and Patrick Nielsen Hayden (Editor-in-Chief at Tor Books and the fiction editorial director of Tor.com).

The Seminar takes place Friday morning from 10:00am to 3:00pm. Registration for the seminar is $50, and there are 40 spaces available on a first-come, first-served basis. Lunch is provided by the hotel and includes vegetarian and non-vegetarian options. Please email workshops@4thstreetfantasy.com if you have any specific food exclusions.