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    I Venture Back Out Into the World for WOTF and GENRE-LA

    The Covid-19 pandemic has been hard on everyone. However, life is getting back to normal.  Recently, I’ve ventured out in the world again, both virtually and in person. I physically attended the WOTF awards and ZOOMed the GENRE-LA conference.

    WOTF:

    In person, I attended the black-tie gala for the Writers and Illustrators of the Future’s 36 & 37th Annual Achievement Awards. A magnificent event, as usual. I have attended the Annual Achievement Awards since 2007 when they were held in Pasadena, with the exception of one year in 2013 when my dog was sick. This year was unusual, since the people at Author Services and Galaxy Press decided to honor both pandemic years together. Masks, tuxedos, and gowns were everywhere, and we needed to prove we’d been vaccinated before we could get inside.

    The talented people at Author Services and Galaxy Press pulled off this year’s unusual WOTF awards ceremony with aplomb. They truly are wonderful people. Even so, only about 60% of the winners showed up. Hopefully, we’ll get to hear from them next year.

    I’m looking forward to reading my copies of L. Ron Hubbard Presents Writers of the Future Volume 36 and Volume 37.

    GENRE-LA:

    Virtually, I appeared as a moderator for the West Coast Writers Conferences (WC2) GENRE-LA Creative Writing Conference. It was my first moderating job, ever.  I moderated the panel for “Mystery, Thriller, and Crime Novels: What’s the Difference?” Panelists included Marcy McCreary, J. A. Crawford, and Daniel C. Lorti. It was an fun, animated, and informative discussion, probably because I stayed out of everyone’s way and let them teach.

    The next day, I appeared as a panelist at WC2 for “Building a Marvelous, Believable Magic System.” Joining me on the panel were C. R. Rowenson, Laurel Anne Hill, and Chrome OxideBrandie June did a wonderful job of moderating us. Although magic systems aren’t my specialty, the rest of the panelists were amazing.  C. R. Rowenson has a Youtube channel called “TheMagicEngineer“.  I will definitely be looking this over.

    Get Involved:

    It you’re a writer and have never attended one of the many West Coast Writers Conferences, I suggest you take advantage of the virtual nature of this event. No travel, no hotel, and only one class per hour (no picking and choosing.) If you are not classified as a professional writer, I urge you to enter the Writers of the Future Contest. You might win the $5,000 Golden Pen Award. If you are not classified as a professional illustrator, I urge you to enter the Illustrators of the Future Contest. It also has a $5,000 Golden Brush award.