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Update and off to Origins!

I'm heading off to Origins Game Fair tomorrow (you can see my panel schedule here) and will be there until Sunday. My panels are all focused on writing and they're always highly informative and a lot of fun.

I find conferences and conventions an invaluable source of inspiration and contacts for freelancers across the board. In fact, most writing gigs I've landed have been a direct result of meeting and interacting with editors and fellow writers at conventions. Origins, San Diego Comic-Con, Star Wars Celebration, Salt Lake Comic Con, those and many more have been a great place to network.

They're great not just for networking, though, they're great for learning, too. Getting different perspectives, and meeting people that you wouldn't ordinarily come in contact with, and talking to people is a great thing. And it'll expose you to all kinds of writing you might not otherwise pick up. It was after two different conventions of meeting Patrick Rothfuss that I finally decided to pick up his Kingkiller Chronicle and I feel incredibly stupid that I hadn't read them when I talked to him. (I thought to myself, "Why is this guy being treated as such a big deal?" and then I read the books and I got it. Instantly.)

So my advice to other writers is to go out and meet other writers. Talk to them. Learn from them. You'll almost never regret it.

On the writing front of my own, I started the untitled novella that will be a part of September's short story collection (that is tentatively titled Escape Vector.) I also plugged along on my fantasy novel and after I broke through the first 5,000 words, I'm having much, much more fun with it.

I also published a piece in Salt Lake City Weekly about the treatment in female audiences and I think it's sort of a must read. You can find it here. But the bottom line for those of you who are writers is this: include more women in the casts of your stories. Half the population is female, so should the casts of your stories. Especially if we want more readers. Women are readers too and they want to see themselves represented in fiction. I've learned this first hand from my daughter and I'm trying to take it to heart.

I also have a new article in the new issue of Star Wars Insider... It's all about the thematic elements Jar Jar brings to the Star Wars universe. I think it's a really fun think piece and you'll all love it. You can catch that on newsstands everywhere by next week.

As far as my work outside of these things: I remain busy for Big Shiny Robot! and Full of Sith. 

As a reminder, you can get tickets to Stuff You Missed in History Class's first live episode in New York in October (which, coincidentally, will feature me) right here.

And don't forget to check out any of my books, drop reviews of them on Amazon or Goodreads, and follow me on twitter and Facebook!

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