I love getting out and meeting new people at fun and/or professional events. Below are a few I’ve found, some in the NW Indiana area and some further abroad. If you know of other great ones, please feel free to let me know and I’ll list them.
Steel Pen Conference on Oct. 28th, Fair Oaks Farms, IN – Hosted by the Indiana Writers’ Consortium, this local conference is a great way for area writers to meet and mingle in a stress-free atmosphere. The keynote speaker is Catherine Lanigan, the author of nearly forty books. Ticket sales end soon, so check it out. http://www.inwriters.org/steel-pen-conference/
The Annual James River Writers Conference, Oct. 14-15 with master classes on Oct. 13. Richmond Virginia. They had 300+ people usually and a lot of famous writers and agents. I don’t know much more about it than that. The Master Classes fall along some unusual lines other than the usual “how to write” offerings. The website for James River.
Boot Camp Extreme Creative Writing Conference, Oct. 20-22, in Los Angeles, California – This conference combines with the Digital Author and Indie Publishing Conference for the same low price. It features one-on-one critiques from editors and agents and agent pitching opportunities. The Boot Camp’s focus is on fiction, nonfiction and screenplay work. http://www.wcwriters.com/bcx/index.html for the boot camp and http://www.wcwriters.com/da/index.html for the Digital Author program.
Genre-LA Speculative Fiction Creative Writing Conference is coming in January/early February but the organizers have not updated the website yet. It is the only conference that I know of that specifically focuses on science fiction and fantasy writing. I’ll let you know more as I hear about it. For info on the 2017 conference, look here, http://www.wcwriters.com/genrela/index.html
Feast of the Hunters Moon, Sept. 30-Oct. 1, West Lafayette, IN – Local people know and love the Feast and it is the 50th year celebration this year. It is similar renaissance festivals only focused more around the late 1700s-early 1800s-time period. The festival celebrates the first European settlement in Indiana. The traders set up white tents for barter, fife and drum bands play, a cannon is shot off occasionally and local charity groups build firepits and earthen ovens to offer an array of traditional food. I love shopping there for old style clothes, leather products, blacksmith items and more. The homemade root beer is popular. It’s also fun and educational for the kids. http://www.crazycrow.com/site/event/feast-of-the-hunters-moon/
Chicago Dark Shores Ghost Con, Oct. 7-8, Lombard, IL- This year they are featuring 20 speakers and more than 50 vendors. Events include a Friday ghost tour, a Saturday costume bash, and a Sunday Illusionist performance. I enjoyed it a lot last year with the focus on not only ghost stories but movie and show previews and info on local hauntings. For those into the paranormal, this is a fun and exciting weekend of exploring beyond the grave. http://www.chicagoghosts.com/conference.html
Tesla Con, The Bucharest Bungle, Nov. 2-5. Middleton, WI. – Steampunkers unite to fight off monsters and show off their fabulous uniforms. The convention boasts three separate dinner nights, but the website lists very little else in terms of schedules. http://www.teslacon.com
Chicago Tardis 2017, Nov. 24-26, Lombard, IL – This Dr. Who convention brings together around 2000 fans to celebrate all things sicence fiction and time travel. Cosplayers are encouraged and guests include Colin Baker, the 6th doctor incarnation. http://chicagotardis.com/trion/guests-2/
Con+Alt+Delete, Dec 15-17, Chicago (Rosemont), IL – The focus of this convention is anime, comic book, and nerd culture. They claim to be the perfect size so that visitors don’t get overwhelmed. The price is comfortable as well when compared to larger conventions of this type. https://conaltdelete.com/
In addition, a number of smaller science fiction conferences are going on throughout October and November. If you want to find one in your area, consider checking out this listing. https://www.upcomingcons.com/science-fiction-conventions