August 14, 2010

SxSW proposals

I wasn't going to list all of the fabulous SxSW Interactive proposals by people I like, and now I don't have to, because Alexis Madrigal of the Atlantic has done it for me!

PanelPicker is down right now (go figure, right?), but Andrew's proposal and Deb's are both listed in the Atlantic's Top 15 panel picks (woo hoo!), along with some fabulous proposals by book people.

Boston bookfuturist Joanne McNeil proposed a panel on caring for your online introvert -- important for many writers. Rural librarian Jessamyn West would like to talk about the digital divide. I didn't realize that 22% of Americans aren't online, and this is a huge topic to discuss. IO9 editors Annalee Newitz and Charlie Jane Anders are part of a group that proposed a talk on science fiction, social networking, and the future. I'm particularly excited about Richard Nash's panel proposal on the future of the book. I expect it to be a challenging, insightful talk, and really hope it's selected.

Although SxSW Interactive is a "tech" conference, I wish more writers would attend. Instead of fearing the death of publishing and waiting to see what happens, we should engage with publishers and start ups and creators of systems to help define and implement new models of publication and distribution.

I attended SxSWi for the first time this past March and live tweeted panels on storytelling, teens, and race/gender. I plan to attend similar strands in the spring, along with any panels on publishing, and hope to continue the conversation. Think about attending, as well. The conference is in Austin, where there's a tight knit and extraordinarily welcoming kidlit community, so it's a chance to get to know wonderful writers as well as people researching and creating future media.

Edited to add: GalleyCat posted a list of SxSW publishing panels. Check them out, and vote! You don't have to attend the conference to help select panels. All you need is a free account.

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