Tag Archives: networking

Episode #95: Something new—Gen Con

This is the third attempt at an episode 95. Honestly, it seems like the universe doesn’t want us to get one of these out! But we shake our fist in front of those barriers.

We are now streaming the Shared Desk live on Tee’s Twitch stream. Following costs nothing, and you’ll get an alert that we are going live. Not only do you get firsties on listening to the show, and the chance to comment live… but also we do a little half hour chit chat after the main show.

Membership has its privileges as they say…

The show as it was streamed

00:00 Introduction

  • We think we remember how to do this.
  • Trapped in a car together all the way to Indiana, but we made it back alive.
  • We met new people, saw some familiar faces.

02:17 What is Gen Con?

  • The best four days of gaming.
  • Tee wants to edit the episode, but Pip actually is doing this!
  • Check out the history of Gen Con
  • It takes over Indiana and Indy itself!
  • 70,000-80,000 people
  • So many neat people have stands there, but for authors Cherie Priest was the Guest of Honor
  • GAWR was at Gen Con, but we missed them. No surprises considering how big it is!
  • Pip and Tee compare Gen Con and DragonCon as far as treating writers…

07:27 The Gen Con Writers Symposium

  • Well laid out, with authors events in one of the hotels. Not even having to cross into the street.
  • So well organized, with tickets, a green room, and 50 minute panels. This gives everyone a chance to get between panels, and panelists a chance to set up.
  • The morgue, for those writers who need some real quiet
  • The green room was a place to chit chat. Pip loved having a place to chill. Would recommend.
  • Kicking it off with a nice free meal, but Indy had more treats in store…

11:32 The long drive

  • A nine hour drive, straight to Indy.
  • Tee hates driving through Ohio freeways, and needed emergency caffeine.
  • Thank you Wayze for Cookie Monster. He got us there! Pip and Tee imitate him…

13:12 Corralling Authors

  • Authors all housed in Marriott East, about 10 miles from Indy.
  • The shuttle was brilliant
  • No hotels for 50 miles around Gen Con

14:05 Pip and Tee wax lyrical about the con badges

  • Melanie Meadors and Kelly Swails put on a heck of a symposium
  • Nice convention pouch with your events on the back.
  • No dodgy pin primed to break and come loose!
  • Pip says it is the best she’s ever seen

15:04 Thursday panels

  • Tee brings the Big Score, and despite technical difficulties managed it
  • Tee found a fellow trombone player!
  • Tee stumped many con goers than usual.
  • Tee did a podcasting panel with Anton Strout and Cat Rambo
  • Tee (and Pip) are both OP (original podcasters)
  • Tee Morris from the Dawn of Time….
  • So we went out for dinner with local friend Kevin. Bluebeard was amazing.
  • We ate and drank well. There may have been bread pudding.

21:23 Friday

  • Pip and Tee worked separate panels.
  • Pip talked about being your own boss. Trials and tribulations meant we could have been there for hours.
  • Pip disagreed with someone!
  • Tee ended up on a panel about Scrivener (a great piece of software for writers)
  • But when you want to edit, you have to use Word
  • It has a screenwriting section, with built in macros!
  • Pip talked about about keeping secondary characters in their place.
  • Lots of good solid topics in every panel
  • Pip and Tee have a slice of humble pie at their Q&A
  • Pip plans to use steampunk to lure people in next time…
  • Tee gets to meet his Wiley editor, Steve Hays
  • Got to meet Aloysius Fox, who runs two events. International Steampunk Symposium and the Chicago Steampunk Exposition
  • Ran into all sorts of people, even in this huge event!
  • Signing a bit of a wash…
  • Pip signed a literary brick
  • Tee also did some pop up streams at the event, but technical difficulties bit
  • Three hour nap turned into just falling on our face. Huge events take it out of a person…

33:21 Saturday

  • Pip talked about reading other genres. Don’t be in a bubble as far as reading.
  • Tee checks his photos, and stand corrected
  • Pip was done, but Tee jumped on a bunch of panels that needed help
  • Tee talked about passing time in writing
  • CAT BUTT turns up!!
  • Training montages!!
  • Tee is the sole writer in the midst of editors, what happens to my story after I send it in?
  • Tee talks Twitch
  • Pip and Tee contemplate a writing stream
Tee’s Twitch panel recorded just fine
  • Tee does a panel where he has to think about writing action.
  • After the last panel, we went out with Diana Pho of Beyond Victoriana, and an editor at Tor. And Jen Gunnels also from Tor.
  • Jen and Tee bonded over theatre and single malt.
  • The story of Harry & Izzy’s was worth every penny!
  • If you need to get into a place, stick close to a New Yorker…
  • The food was amazing… but the ending was epic! Bread pudding with Woodford Reserve!
  • 2.5 hour of dinner was so much damn fun. A great way to cap off Gen Con
  • Pip passed out, but Tee went out for beer with Danfinity
  • Find Tee on Untappd

51:15 Indy wrap up

  • Pip and Tee think Indy is a cool city. 19th century architecture, and public art
  • People were lovely, and our Uber drivers were all charming… and they all love FIFA. Futbol!

Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or questions for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
We’ll talk about it!
And remember, you can find the show on
iTunes or Stitcher!
Subscribe, listen, and review.

Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

Leave a Comment

Filed under Episodes

Episode #58: A Crash Course in Networking (with Lauren “Scribe” Harris)

On the way up to the event that is Balticon, Lauren “Scribe” Harris spent the night with us…and then she spent another night with us on the way home! We fired up the mic to enjoy a one-show before-and-after to talk with this talented up-and-coming author about meeting agents at a con. How do you approach agents? How do you not come across like “that author” at an event? Pull up a chair and have a listen to what advice we offer before Balticon, and then see how she fared up afterwards.

Oh, and after Balticon? “Scribe” may have fixed cocktails for us. It’s an jam-packed show, heading beyond the hour mark so be ready!

00:00 —  Introduction

  • Holy crap, we’re back already behind the mic! And this time, we are not alone….
  • And our favorite Bavarian provides another drop-in for the show.

01:22 — A Crash Course in Networking (with Lauren “Scribe” Harris) 

  • Lauren asks Tee and Pip to help her prep for Balticon 50
  • So we are clear what is NOT happening when George R.R. Martin is at Balticon.
  • Some background on Lauren’s quest for an agent.
  • How do you approach an agent and not be “that author” in front of an editor or agent?
  • There’s Verena again!
  • If you can tell a story, you can talk to an agent.
  • Have business card, will travel.
  • Different icebreakers for editors and agents
  • You never stop feeling like a n00b. Just ask Tee and who he almost did a panel with…
  • Eye contact. Firm handshake. (Lauren’s got this!)
  • Play up coincidences and be yourself.
  • Don’t always be pitching. That can get real old, real quick.
  • A quick tangent on moderating panels.
  • What we do and we don’t like in panels and panel moderation.
  • Lauren has a plan…kinda.
  • Tee’s got a few ideas on how to relax.
  • Pip evokes the “Pull Pip Back” drop-in….
  • Breathing is good. So is perspective.

22:26 — Elevator Pitching 101

  • Lauren pitches to Tee and Pip, and Tee goes to work.
  • Elevator Pitches for Tee’s works-in-progress
    • Blackstar Rising
    • Wolf in the Fold
    • Countdown
  • Tee gets a hold of Lauren’s query and tries to make a pitch on the fly…
  • Man—Lauren is a HARSH critic!
  • Look for the touchstones of your query, and build your elevator pitch around that.
  • Keep the elevator pitches short, quick, and all in one sentence.
  • And Lauren knocks it out of the park with an elevator pitch for Song of the Heretic!
  • We evoke Damon Suede once more on the show…
  • Check it—Tee stumped Lauren with a literature reference.
  • Remember: The Elevator Pitch is your hook.
  • Make sure the pitches line up.

38:14 — Fast Forward to Post-Balticon (with Lauren “Scribe” Harris)

  • We have cocktails!
  • Yes, PJ and Matt, we are thinking of you…and are bitter about it.
  • Lauren will be stepping in as a Deep Southern PJ Schnyder…
  • So, Lauren settles in with panels alongside the agent. How did it go?
    • Panel One: Dealing with Rejection
    • Lauren handles introductions with the agent like a boss!
    • Panel Two: The Fine Art of Negotiation (or Lauren Thinks Fast on Her Feet)
    • It is always nice to have an audience eager to ask questions.
  • Don’t always count on the audience to be hungry to talk to agents and editors.
  • 9 a.m. panels can have a good turnout.
  • Yes, Tee called Lauren “darling” and everyone was okay with it. #SouthernThang
  • Taking a moment to talk a bit about Balticon and their bumpy weekend, logistically speaking.
  • A.F. Grappin of the MeltingPotcast.com was taking advantage of the new scheduling app…but not everyone was using the app…
  • And the podcast descends into hashtags and drop-in’s…
  • Lauren manages to score a card! Good sign!
  • And another opportunity for Lauren to show some savvy.
  • Here’s a Myke Cole moment for you.
  • The verbal invite to pitch: Achievement Unlocked!
  • And we’re on boobs….for some reason.
  • Lauren critiques her con performance.

58:35 — Lauren’s Impromptu Pitch Development

  • Lauren got a few of the Balticon Tribe together and gave her pitch a screening.
  • A pitch should be like a picture of a meal in a sushi restaurant.
  • Lauren got a chance to WITNESS with Hugh O’Donnell, get to know new Tribe better, and just hang with others of the Smoky Writers Mafia.
  • Wrapping up the overall Balticon 50 experience.

1:03:23 — Wrapping up

  • I would not be so crazy as to purposefully cut off  “Scribe” but we have been going for a spell…
  • Oh my god, Pip’s glass is EMPTY!!!
  • Lauren adds praise for the new hotel.
  • Waxing nostalgic over the PG Holyfield Cookout…
  • BUDGET FOR PARKING!
  • Where Lauren will be?
  • What’s coming up for us?
  • Lauren tempts Tee and Pip with Farpoint in February…
  •  …while Tee and Pip tempt Lauren back up to our area with Steampunk unLimited.
  • Go find Lauren online. Her website is right here!
  • Got thoughts or comments on this show?
    • We have voicemail — 703.791.1701
    • I have email — tee@teemorris.com
    • Pip’s got email — pip@pjballantine.com
    • You can find us on social media…
    • …and yeah, Tee is on Snapchat as TheTeeMonster
  • Let’s all try and find Lauren on Snapchat…

Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
on Tee, or the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences on Periscope
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.

Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

2 Comments

Filed under Episodes