Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Dahlonega Literary Festival wrap up and a video chat

I recently returned from the Dahlonega Literary Festival, a great book festival in an artsy little town in the Georgia blueridge area. I had an absolutely wonderful time and met many amazing people during the weekend event. I also stayed at the cutest little bed and breakfast called the Lily Creek Lodge, and if anyone ever wants to escape for a weekend, I highly recommend it.

Finding your Topic panel
Over the last year I've had the opportunity to speak at a lot of fantasy and fan conventions, but this weekend was my very first literary festival. I've attended a couple literary festivals in the past, and at every single one I've found that genre fiction has been rather under represented and the fantasy genre conspicuously absent. There is often contention and rather nasty biases between literary fiction and genre fiction, so I admit I was a little concerned what reception I, as a rather young, newly published urban fantasy writer, would receive both from the audience who would attend the event and the other writers, but everyone was absolutely wonderful. The discussions on the panels were diverse and fun, my fellow writers were amazingly friendly and a pleasure to converse with both on and off panels, and everyone I spoke to was absolutely wonderful. And, for the first time at any literary festival I've attended, fantasy had a strong showing! There were three fantasists on the guest list: Seressia Glass, Susan Hubbard,  and myself. (Special shout out to Carol and Sharon for inviting us.)

I chatted with Susan and Seressia a good deal over the weekend, and near the end of the event, I asked if I could record a quick video chat. I apparently make faces when I talk and gesticulate horribly (I imagine I do this on panels as well) but it was a ton of fun to record the chat, so if you guys like this kind of thing, I'll try to take a video camera to all my events in the future. Check it out here:

Happy Tuesday everyone!


Mardel said...

I've noticed the weird little biases against "genre" fiction also as a reader. I've received comments about reading "real" fiction (REAL?! the very definitiion of fiction is the opposite of real - the whole point is to be entertained) - "when are you going to branch out into reading 'real' fiction, Good books?" - Please, I read to enjoy myself, not to satisfy some weird expectations of others.

I'm glad you had some polite and nice people on the panel - good to know not everyone are "fiction snobs". LOL

Marcia Colette said...

What?! Susan Hubbard was there and I missed it? Wahhhhhhhhh!

Okay, as you can see, I'm a fan girl. :) And isn't Seressia awesome? I so can't wait to see more of her Shadowblade series...and yours too, of course. Gravewitch is on my TBR pile and I WILL be getting to it soon. ;-)

Carol M. said...

Kalayna, it was great to have you with us here in Dahlonega (and you are very welcome).


Great video. Onlookers rarely notice quirks unless you point them out ;-) I usually tap a foot or speak entirely too fast. It's my very own 'cope with the nervousness' technique. Awesome tips given at the end. Create likable characters and be selfish. I'm putting both of these tips to use immediately. I will be in attendance at the festival this year. Congrats and many blessings in the endeavors of each.

Katandra Shanel Jackson