Happy 50th Anniversary, Star Trek!

Yesterday (September 7, 2016) marked the 50th Anniversary of Star Trek’s first airing. I can’t count the ways in which this show has influenced me.  The biggest conscious influences:

  • encouraged me to pursue a career in science and engineering
  • motivated me to write my own stories
  • helped me to accept that being analytical, making mistakes and expressing emotions are all OK
  • showed people using logic and science to solve difficult problems (yeah, OK, and sometimes emotional convictions, intuition and force–that’s human too)
  • showed me that others also value an upbeat vision of a future based on exploration (concepts as well as new places and people), tolerance, celebrating differences, and the scientific method.

Thanks to Gene Roddenberry and the multitudes of dedicated, creative people who helped bring the world of Star Trek to screens big, small, and flat.

My 2016 WorldCon Schedule


Below is my MidAmeriCon II speaking schedule: a couple of cancer panels, a couple of space panels, and a reading (yes, something new). Come find me at the Kansas City Convention Center August 17-21 and say hello!

Living with Cancer
Wednesday 8/17/2016 14:00-15:00, 2206 (Kansas City Convention Center)
$£%* Cancer. Our panel talks about the experience of cancer, how it affected their writing and lives, and how we can support the fan community.
Janet Freeman-Daily, Rosemary Kirstein, Ms Pat Cadigan (M), Priscilla Olson

Reading: Janet Freeman-Daily
Thursday 8/18/2016 16:30-17:00, 2202 (Readings) (Kansas City Convention Center)
Janet Freeman-Daily

Defining Acceptable Risks in Space Exploration
Friday 8/19/2016 11:00-12:00, 2502B (Kansas City Convention Center)
The further we move into deep space exploration the more we have to ask, to what extent it can be risk-free, or at least risks limited. We consider the risks, what can be done to guard against them, and how much risk do humans need to accept — at least in the early stages.
H.G. Stratmann (M), Henry Spencer, Jerry Pournelle, Janet Freeman-Daily, Frank Wu

Space Technology Spinoffs
Saturday 8/20/2016 16:00-17:00, 2210 (Kansas City Convention Center)
There have been some 2,000 technological products, inventions and ideas trasferred from NASA missions to commercial products and services. Of these, many have made life on Earth better in the fields of health and medicine, transportation, public safety, consumer goods, energy and environment, information technology, and industrial productivity. Panelists discuss their favorite examples of space technology spinoffs.
Mrs. Laurel Anne Hill, Les Johnson, Janet Freeman-Daily (M), Joy Ward, Brenda Cooper

Cancer Treatment
Sunday 8/20/2016 10:00-11:00, 3501H (Kansas City Convention Center)
In the last year fandom has lost many good people to cancer – both fans and creators. Many members of our community are currently being treated or are in remission and more people get diagnosed everyday. Our experts have an informal discussion about how cancer is currently treated and what it will look like in the future.
Janet Freeman-Daily, Dr. Ronald Taylor

You can also visit my official schedule page on the MidAmeriCon II website.

My Upcoming Appearances: Westercon 69 (July 4 weekend)

Over the 4th of July weekend I will be attending Westercon 69 in Portland, Oregon, where I will speak on three panels and conduct one Kaffeeklatsch. I will also be participating in a lung cancer meetup in Portland on Monday July 4 at 10 AM–please post in the comments if you want to be part of it.

Here is my tentative schedule at Westercon:

How being an engaged patient can save your life (Hawthorne)
Friday Jul 1 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Patients around the world are changing the healthcare model by becoming partners in their own care. What is an engaged patient, how can you become engaged, and why should you care?
Ari Goldstein, Ellen Klowden, Frog Jones, Janet Freeman-Daily, Jennifer Willis

Recent Scientific Breakthroughs – What (Lincoln)
Saturday Jul 2 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Is it black holes, gravitational waves, global warming, a new species discovered, or something else? Which recent discoveries intrigue you most.
Dan Dubrick, Gregory Gadow, James Glass, Janet Freeman-Daily

Kaffeeklatsch (Multnomah)
Sun Jul 3 11:00 am – 12:00 pm
Small group discussions with authors, artists, and other interesting personalities (referred to as “hosts”) Sessions are limited to the host and a small group of attendees.
Ctein, Daniel H. Wilson, Janet Freeman-Daily, Jeff Sturgeon, Manny Frishberg, Sara Stamey, Sue Bolich

Is Gibson Getting Out of Hand? (Hawthorne)
Sun Jul 3 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Is corporate control of research and the drive for short-term profit crippling scientific innovation and basic research? Do established companies always feel threatened by new technology and lobby for legislation to restrict it?
Bob Brown, Frank Hayes, Janet Freeman-Daily, Jim Doty

My Norwescon 39 Panel Schedule

nwc 2016 banner

The Norwescon 39 Science Fiction Convention happens March 24-27, 2016, in SeaTac, Washington.  I will once again be a science panelist.  You can find me on the panels listed below, or maybe hanging out in the bar with other writers and science geeks, scarfing down a snack in the Green Room, or wandering the corridors on my way to the art show, dealers room, a friend’s reading, or an interesting panel.  hope to see you there!

 

BIO21 – Blinded by Pseudoscience
Fri 6:00 PM-7:00 PM – Cascade 3&4
Gregory Gadow (M), Janet Freeman-Daily, Caroline Pate, Dr. Misty Marshall, Jake McKinzie

TEC05 – Real Radiation for Writers & Readers
Fri 8:00 PM-9:00 PM – Cascade 5&6
Mike Brennan (M), Janet Freeman-Daily, Arthur Bozlee, Daniel P. Lynge

BIO20 – Facts & Fictions of Cancer
Sat 1:00 PM-2:00 PM – Cascade 5&6
Janet Freeman-Daily (M), Dr. Misty Marshall, Vickie Bligh, Nicholas Maurice

BIO16 – Ask the Experts: Biology
Sat 2:00 PM-3:00 PM – Cascade 5&6
Alan Andrist (M), Janet Freeman-Daily, Caroline Pate, Dr. Misty Marshall, Nicholas Maurice

TEC01 – Remembering In Tomorrow
Sat 7:00 PM-8:00 PM – Cascade 9
Sean Hagle (M), Janet Freeman-Daily, Michael Ormes

BIO19 – Evolution Is Just a Theory!
Sun 10:00 AM-11:00 AM – Cascade 5&6
Dr. Ricky (M), Janet Freeman-Daily, Alan Andrist, Michael McSwiney, Jake McKinzie

BIO03 – Future Pharma
Sun 2:00 PM-3:00 PM – Cascade 5&6
Janet Freeman-Daily (M), Caroline Pate, Vickie Bligh, Nicholas Maurice

My Worldcon 2015 Schedule

Here is my schedule of events next week for Sasquan (the 73rd World Science Fiction Convention) in Spokane, Washington. Hope to see you there!
Kaffee Klatche

Thursday 8/20 15:00 – 15:45, 202B-KK4 (CC)
Science Reporting

Friday 8/21 11:00 – 11:45, 302AB (CC)

Anne Hoppe (M), Frank Catalano, Janet Freeman-Daily, Charlotte Lewis Brown
Blinded by Pseudoscience

Friday 8/21 15:00 – 15:45, 300D (CC)

Sam Scheiner (M), Janet Freeman-Daily, Gregory Gadow, G. David Nordley, Alvaro Zinos-Amaro
Fanwriting from Twiltone to Facebook: Zines, Blogs, Social Media — What’s the Diff?

Sunday 8/23 14:00 – 14:45, Bays 111C (CC)

Janet Freeman-Daily (M), Mike Glyer, Catherynne M. Valente, Jim Wright, Megan Frank

Movie Music Magic

Yesterday I saw the Seattle Symphony perform a Pops concert titled “The Movie Music of John Williams.”  Being a science fiction fan, I knew many of the movies well: Superman, Jurassic Park, Jaws, E.T., Raiders of the Lost Ark, Star Wars.  I was in heaven.  Who cared the Seattle Seahawks were playing nearby?

The Conductor talked a bit about each composition, and explained a movie theme evolves through conversations between the filmmaker and the composer. On the suggestion of the conductor, I focused on the feeling imparted by the music as I reflected on the plot of each movie. The writer in me recognized a lot of foreshadowing and definition of characters. For example, the Superman theme was upbeat and heroic. Indiana Jones conveyed adventure and romance. Actually, a lot of the music had an epic/heroic feel–Williams used some common structures in the different compositions.

The Casablanca Suite (composed by Max Steiner) even suggested the Moroccan setting.  I imagine that would be a bit tougher with Star Wars.  What musical phrasing would suggest an alien planet like Tattooine?

Interestingly, the Jurassic Park theme created an image of a magnificent park full of amazing dinosaurs, but gave no hint the magnificence would eat anyone. I wonder if Spielberg told Williams not to reveal that part of the movie?

The conductor also had some fun speculating about early Spielberg-Williams conversations on the Jaws theme.
Spielberg: So how’s the theme coming?
Williams: Well, I’ve got this so far. [plays the single bass note which starts the infamous DUH-duh-DUH-duh]
I couldn’t help it. I found myself imagining Spielberg responding, “We’re gonna need a bigger note.”  My husband had no clue why I was giggling.

At the end of the evening, I indulged my inner geek and had my picture taken with some denizens of the lobby. It was MAHvelous to immerse myself in music and stories I love and forget all about lung cancer for a few hours.

JEF and Star Wars at the Symphony

My Orycon 2013 Science Panels

I’m going to Orycon 35, a science fiction convention held November 8-10, 2013, in Portland, Oregon. The programming folks have dreamed up some interesting science panels! I’m especially looking forward to the panel Jay Lake and I are doing on “Living with Late Stage Cancer,” which was very well received at the World Science Fiction Convention in San Antonio last August. If you’re attending Orycon, I hope you’ll attend one of my panels or find me in the halls (I’m not a night owl nowadays, so I’ll be scarce at parties).

The Science of Funding Science
Fri Nov 8 4:00pm-5:00pm (Alaska)
Are we missing out on gaining knowledge because of political correctness?

Living With Late Stage Cancer
Fri Nov 8 5:00pm-6:00pm (Alaska)
What it’s like to live from scan to scan, how we learn about different treatment options, coping when treatment fails, and answering questions from the audience.

Would you go to a doctor whose professors were witch doctors?
Sat Nov 9 10:00am-11:00am (Idaho)
What medicine has gotten right and wrong over the eons.

Do we all really need to know calculus?
Sat Nov 9 1:00pm-2:00pm (Alaska)
Is it really necessary for everyone to graduate from high school knowing physics? How much math do we really use on a daily basis?

I want to get my science on?
Sat Nov 9 4:00pm-5:00pm (Alaska)
Where does the lay person keep up with the latest developments

Ask Dr. Genius: Ad-Lib Answers to Audience Questions
Sat Nov 9 5:00pm-6:00pm (Alaska)
No, really, they’re real scientists, honest. Bring your science questions, and if they don’t have an answer they’ll make something up, and it might even be sort of right.

Cancer sucks-is there hope?
Sun Nov 10 11:00am-12:00pm (Alaska)
New insights into cancer provides glimmers of hope for victims and their families. How are new treatment options shaping up? How soon can we hope for a cure?

Midi-chlorians? Really?!
Sun Nov 10 1:00pm-2:00pm (Alaska)
Best and worst science in the movies.