Programming

COSine has long been known for its great discussion panels on a wide variety of fiction, science, and literary panels. We will have two tracks of main programming running from late afternoon on Friday through early afternoon on Sunday, plus author readings, special events, author's reception, and book signing.

If you have questions about programming, please contact Cary Quinn or Mary Morman

You must have a membership to attend any COSine functions.


Rooms for programming are noted in (parenthesis) for each item. The Art Show is on the 4th floor, Rampart, Telluride, and the Con Suite are on the 3rd floor, Breckenridge and Aspen are on the 2nd floor.

Friday, January 20

1pm — Registration Opens. Set-Up for Art Show, Dealers, and Con Suite
Drop by the 4th floor to pick up your badge. Artists and Dealers can get set up.

3pm — Programming Begins, Art Show and Dealer's Room open, Con Suite opens, Gaming Begins
Art Show and Dealer's Room are in the Summit Ballroom on the 4th floor. The Con Suite is on the 3rd floor. Program rooms are on floors 2 and 3.
3pm — When Your Home is Smarter than You Are (Rampart)
You can now buy a fridge that reminds you when to buy milk, and devices to turn your lights, your TV, and your sprinklers on and off. Not to mention the audio response units that look things up for you on the internet. Have we gone too far? Is there any chance left for privacy? Will the kids reprogram the fridge to always buy ice cream? — Panelists: Dan Hoyt(M), Ray Hutton, Wil McCarthy, Jon Singer
3pm — Poetry Reading: Bring yours to share (Breckenridge)
GOH Jo Walton will read from her poetry. Bring yours along and we’ll have a poetry slam! — Panelists: Mary Morman(M), Jo Walton
3pm — Gaming begins
Details at Gaming

4pm — Fame and Fortune: What famous scientist should go on the $50 bill? (Rampart)
A recent ANALOG editorial proposed that the new $50 bill honor a scientist. Who would you chose if it were up to you? — Panelists: Kent Bloom(M), David Kilman, John Stith, Courtney Willis
4pm — Cross-culturalism for Steampunk Writers and Makers (Breckenridge)
Can you write a Steampunk ninja? Is it okay for your characters to be from, or visit, Patagonia? Is Steampunk limited to London and the US – or can it encompass a world view? The panelists take on the ticklish issues of cultural exposure and sharing, and cultural appropriation and exploitation. — Panelists: Quincy Allen(M), Christopher Salas, Melanie Unruh, Peter Wacks
4pm — Readings by Carol Hightshoe, L.F. Patten, & Marie DesJardin (Aspen)

5pm — Panspermia: Did life on Earth originate in outer space? (Rampart)
Scientists discuss whether panspermia is more likely than unique, local evolution. Or perhaps there’s something in between? — Panelists: Rebecca Lickiss, Wil McCarthy(M), Jon Singer, Connie Willis
5pm — Heinlein’s Influence: The Young Adult market then and now (Breckenridge)
Heinlein wrote many of his juvenile novels for publication in Boy’s Life – which had a strict code of moral conduct. Would he have written the same way in today’s wide-open YA market? Do his novels set a benchmark for today’s fiction? — Panelists: Sourdough Jackson, Nathan Lowell(M), Jo Walton, Corie Weaver

6pm — Opening Ceremonies (Rampart)
Join us as Con Chair Kent Bloom introduces our Guests of Honor and Special Guests and opens this year’s convention. There will be an ice cream social in the Con Suite to follow.

8-10pm — Ask Doctor Science (Rampart)
Special Guest Dr. Courtney Willis will present an interesting presentation on some aspect of science. You never know from year to year what will happen. Last year con members ended up out in the parking lot measuring the circumference of the Earth. How cool is that?!
8pm — Women’s Status in Steampunk and Fantasy Worlds: Contraception, birth, and pregnancy (Breckenridge)
Female characters in Steampunk and alternate history novels often seem too ‘modern’ to fit into their surroundings. Historian Dr. Kim Klimek will fill us in on what it was actually like to be a woman in previous eras.
8pm-Midnight — Filking (Aspen)
"Filk" has been described as the folk music of the science-fiction fan community. It's a mixture of song parodies and original music, humorous and serious, about subjects like science fiction, fantasy, computers, cats, politics, the space programme, books, movies, TV shows, love, war, death... Drop on by to perform or just to listen!

9pm — Original D&D (Breckenridge)
DMs Ted and Robin Monogue will use their way-back machine to run an adventure from the original three D&D books that were first published in 1975. Come and pick a character and watch the fun. Participants will be chosen from those assembled, and when that character dies another person will join the party with their character.

Saturday, January 21

9am — Registration opens
Pick up your badge or buy a day membership
9am — Con Suite opens
Swing by for a cup of coffee or tea, and enjoy the dark side of breakfast with blueberry Death Star waffles.

10am — Guest of Honor Interview with Jo Walton (Rampart)
Mem Morman will interview our GoH Jo Walton, followed by a question and answer session.
10am — Dealers Room and Art Show open
Dealers Room and Art Show both close at 6pm

11am — The Second Time Around: What happens when rights revert to the author? (Rampart)
While many authors today are self-publishing, there are also many established authors who gain rights to their earlier books and seek to re-market them in print or audio or e-print. It’s complex and sometimes a little dirty. Come and listen to our authors' adventures in republishing. — Panelists: Cynthia Felice, Sarah Hoyt, Nathan Lowell(M), John Stith
11am — Thud and Blunder: Writing a compelling fight scene (Breckenridge)
Some characters are born to fight, others take up physical combat as a last resort. How do you write fight scenes? How do you decide what kind of combat your character should learn, and how can you make that an integral part of their believable story? — Panelists: Andy Burns, Marie DesJardin(M), Travis Heermann, Sam Knight, Marc MacYoung, L.F. Patten, Kal Spriggs
11am — An Introduction to the Royal Manticoran Navy (Aspen)
Do you have a little Honor Harrington in you? Come meet the official Fan association for the Honorverse and find out what fans of the David Weber books find so engaging.
11am — Gaming begins
Details at Gaming

Noon — Coffee, Tea, or Poison: The creation and use of food, allergies, and stimulants in SF (Rampart)
A common meme since War of the Worlds has been for aliens to die of Earth-side germs. But what about food and drink in a multi-being society? How do you know whether coffee is a delicacy or a poison? How would humans feel about giving up their standard stimulants to cater to sensitive aliens? — Panelists: Scott Beckman, A.L. Kessler, Nathan Lowell(M), Jon Singer, Jo Walton
Noon — Eclipse 2017: Coming to a State near you (Breckenridge)
Ronnie Seagren, our own eclipse expert, will talk about the different kinds of eclipses and focus on the one coming up this summer in the United States.
Noon — The 6 Step Program: Learn the basics of English Country Dancing (1st floor Ballroom - Salon A)
English Country Dancing is all about taking a few basic steps and combining them in new and interesting ways. Come learn what you need to know to be ready for the masked ball this evening.

1pm — Cosplay Isn’t Just for Conventions (Rampart)
Costuming and conventions have gone together since the early SF cons in the 1940s, but now there are a variety of venues to display your costuming efforts, and not all of them are SF related. — Panelists: Rosa Brassart, Nikki Ebright, Astral Scribe, Melanie Unruh(M)
1pm — Reading the Slushpile (Breckenridge)
Several of our attending publishers will read your stories aloud and decide whether or not your opening 250 words will keep them reading or leave your manuscript in the trash. They will discuss what readers look for in an opening sequence and how to make your opening stronger. — Panelists: Lou J Berger, Carol Hightshoe, Corie Weaver(M)
1pm — Reading by Connie Willis (Aspen)

2pm — SGoH Presentation: Build your own laser from junk in your garage – well, almost (Rampart)
Jon Singer, our science GoH, is an independent researcher and inventor who has been interested in laser technology for most of his life. He’s also a polymath, a tinkerer, and a long-time SF fan.
2pm — Rewriting Myths and Fairy Tales (Breckenridge)
What did Rapunzel’s tower really represent? And how would a modern author make that clear? From C.S. Lewis’ Til We Have Faces to Patricia McKillip's Winter Rose and the Drew Barrymore film Ever After – authors have brought a new look to myths and fairy tales. How is it done, who’s doing it, and is it selling? — Panelists: Scott Beckman, Sarah Hoyt, Thea Hutcheson, Kim Klimek(M), Rebecca Lickiss, Jo Walton
2pm — Can You Count to Three? (1st floor Ballroom - Salon A)
Dancemaster Kent Bloom teaches you to do a basic waltz in preparation for the Masquerade this evening.

3pm — Pulling Time Apart: Time travel, alternate histories, and alternate universes (Rampart)
Sometimes one crucial event – even a very small one - can change the course of history. Authors are using these turning points in time to change the history we know into something a bit different. How much can man tinker with time and get away with it? Are there really different timelines all around us running towards a common end? — Panelists: Marie DesJardin, Jo Walton, Peter Wacks, Daniel Willis(M)
3pm — How to Make your Monsters Real (Breckenridge)
Whether your monsters are velociraptors, alien entities, or evil villains, how do you make them real enough to be scary and not ridiculous? How much biology do you have to know to create a methane breathing sentient entity? — Panelists: Scott Beckman, Matt Bille, Sue Duff, Sam Knight(M)
3-5pm — Mask Workshop (Aspen)
Make a marvelous mask to wear to tonight’s Masquerade Ball! Melanie Unruh has mask blanks and a variety of feathers, beads, and furbelows with which to decorate your creation.

4pm — Undead or Just Lame: Are we overusing zombies and other paranormal critters? (Rampart)
Seems like there are zombies and werewolves walking down every street these days. Are they still scary? Can you make a horror story or paranormal story really scary just by the use of the undead, or are other devices needed? — Panelists: Quincy Allen, Travis Heermann(M), A.L. Kessler, Sam Knight, Christopher Salas, Peter Wacks
4pm — Codes of Conduct and Alternatives for Conventions (Breckenridge)
The past few years have seen an increase in conventions with formal, written codes of conduct for con-goers and members. This panel will discuss the need for such codes, and alternatives that can still work. — Panelists: Lou J Berger, Nikki Ebright, Marc MacYoung, Mary Morman(M), Connie Willis

5:30-7pm — Author Reception & Mass Autographing(1st Floor Ballroom - Salon A)
All of our authors will gather in Salons A & B on the first floor to sign books and meet with fans. There will be a refreshment buffet with sweet and savory nibbles, and a cash bar. All members are invited to attend.

8-10pm — Masked Ball (1st floor Ballroom - Salon C)
Join us in your favorite mask and costume (or even your disguise as a normal 21st century person). Regency dances and waltzes will be taught and danced. No experience needed!
8-midnight — Movie Time! (Breckenridge)
Check the schedule board at the Con to see what we'll be watching this year.
8pm-Midnight — Filking (Aspen)
Join members of Denverfilk for some filk songs. Setup can start as early as 7pm.

9pm — Ceramics, Glazes, and Luminescence (Rampart)
Science Guest of Honor Jon Singer will show samples of different glazes that luminesce in different kinds of light, and then lead a discussion with the panelists on how to make and use these glazes. — Panelists: Peri Charlifu, Jon Singer, Melanie Unruh(M)

10:30pm — Ultimate Werewolf Game (Rampart)
A social guessing game played in a circle. A staple at conventions of all sorts, for up to 20 players. Ages 10+ — Connor Monogue

Sunday, January 22

9am — Registration opens
Pick up your badge, buy a day membership, or get the best price on pre-registration for COSine 2018.
10am — Dealers Room and Art Show open
The Art Show will close at noon to prepare items for the auction and pick-up. Don't miss your last chance to bid! The Dealers Room will close at 2pm.
10am — That’s So 20th Century: Getting the research & details right for time travel in the seeable past (Rampart)
Time travel to the recent past is a theme in many books, movies, and TV shows. How can authors research the 20th century to mine for clothing, customs, and incidents to make their work realistic? — Panelists: Marie DesJardin, Kevin Ikenberry, John Stith(M), Carrie Vaughn, Connie Willis, Daniel Willis
10am — How Much Does That Star Cruiser Cost? Fictional economics (Breckenridge)
Many fantasy and science fiction novels are strong on plot and characters, but leave out a crucial piece of world building – the financial basis of the created society. How do you work in references to the cost of bread and beer, and then make that scale up to the cost of a star cruiser? — Panelists: Sarah Hoyt, Sam Knight, Nathan Lowell(M), Kal Spriggs, Jo Walton

11am — A Stargate in Your Own Living Room: 3D printing and modeling (Rampart)
The advent of 3D printing has given rise to economical prototyping and fast turnaround parts. The capabilities of the printers will be outlined. The panel will discuss various printing methods and electronics to enhance the finished models. Examples will be presented. — Panelists: Ray Hutton(M), Wil McCarthy, Jon Singer
11am — Hats to Spats – Accessories for your Steampunk attire and where to acquire them (Breckenridge)
Dress accessories make the Genteel Steampunk. Ideas and resources for adding an air of authenticity to your Neo-Victorian attire. — Panelists: Rosa Brassart, Melanie Unruh(M)
11am — Reading by Carrie Vaughn (Aspen)
11am — Gaming begins
Details at Gaming

Noon — What’s the Best Medium for the Story? Live action vs. animation (Rampart)
When adapting a book or story to film, what medium will do justice to the story? Is live action too limiting, or is animation too fantastic? — Panelists: Ashley Bazer, Cary Quinn(M), Cristopher Salas, Corie Weaver
Noon — Coming Together and Falling Apart: Chaos theory and modern communications (Breckenridge)
Are iPhones the harbinger of the singularity? Do we need more communications or less? What about privacy? Is there some threshold of mass communications that will lead to chaos? Our panelists will discuss chaos theory as it relates to the growing presence of instant and constant communications. — Panelists: Kent Bloom, Dan Hoyt, Ted Monogue(M), Jon Singer, Connie Willis
Noon — Readings by Lou J Berger and A.L. Kessler (Aspen)

1pm — Art Show Auction (Art Show)
Bid on artwork that went to auction before it gets away!
1pm — What Does “Published” Mean in Today’s Market? (Rampart)
The past two decades have seen an enormous turnaround in the way people read, and this has naturally led to different opinions on how we define a "published" work. Ebooks, audio, and podcasts are growing markets that often cut out the function of the big publishing houses, and in turn those publishers are doing less and less for their author clients. Where is publishing headed, and who counts as a published author in the middle of this cultural change? — Panelists: Sue Duff, Travis Heermann, Nathan Lowell, Astral Scribe, Carrie Vaughn, Peter Wacks(M)
1pm — High Fantasy and the Modern Reader (Breckenridge)
Some sixty-ish years ago Houghton Mifflin published a magical quest novel aimed at an adult audience. Tolkien’s work was so new and different in the 1950’s that there was nothing at all to compare it to. Today’s reader may find the themes of high fantasy so different and overused that they need to constantly push the envelope of magic to differentiate their novels from the mass of others. How did we come so far in such a short time? Is there still a market for fantasy? Have quest novels gone out of style? — Panelists: Scott Beckman, Lou J Berger(M), Carol Hightshoe, David Kilman, Thea Hutcheson

2pm — You Don’t Have to be Dead: Accumulating and dispersing books and other collections (Rampart)
Fans are collectors. They collect everything from first edition books to esoteric mimeo-printed fanzines (and comics and costumes and photographs…). If you want to keep control of how your collection is handled in the future, then you need to make arrangements while you are still alive to distribute and fund the collection you want to pass on. — Panelists: Kent Bloom(M), Kevin Ikenberry, Christopher Salas, Joe Sokola, Corie Weaver, Jo Walton
2pm — This Year’s Best: What are you reading and what do you want to nominate? (Breckenridge)
The brave and adventurous readers who agreed to talk about this year’s books will discuss what they are reading, why and how they choose what to read, and what they think might be nominated for the various 2017 SF literary awards. — Panelists: Andy Burns, Sarah Hoyt, L.F. Patten, Eric Schwartz(M)
2pm — Art Pickup (Art Show)
Pick up and pay for any art you bid on during the show or auction.

3pm — Closing Ceremonies (Rampart)
Followed by tear-down and the Dead Dog Party in the Con Suite. Help us pack up and get some snacks! Thanks for coming to COSine 2017!
Martin panel COSine panel Sharon Shinn Steampunk Ball