The second annual FyreCon, the science fiction and fantasy learning conference on art, writing, and games, returns to Weber State University June 21-23, 2018.

This convention is unlike most you have ever attended. It’s more properly classed as a symposium, with master classes, special events and more than 200 hours of programming. Topics include writing for publication, games, and the entire spectrum of new media, as well, as classes on a variety of visual arts. By classes, we mean real classes, with some of the master classes being eight hour affairs, taught by experts in their fields.

The conference takes place at Weber State University Davis Campus, 2750 University Park Boulevard, Layton, UT 84041 on Thursday, June 21, 2018 through Saturday, June 23, 2018. Registration opens at 8am daily.

Master Events

  • Writing A to Z Explore the writing process with David Farland? step-by-step over three
    days and see exactly how it is done. Each hour we’ll cover a new step toward completion
    and beyond.
  • Rudiments of Sculpture
  • Cracking the Story Code Cracking the Story Code with Amy White is an accumulative
    multi-level structural and substantive system of text and story analysis that reveals what
    works in successful stories, why it works, and the knowledge to understand what is
    needed to create those stories—predictably and consistently. It is a gift of second sight.
  • Story as Engine: Tinklering with What Makes Your Narrative Tick–or Not This is a
    seminar-based workgroup with Dr. Charles E. Gannon? where the emphasis is not upon
    line edits and mechanics, but the guts of story itself. Bring two primary “problems” with
    your latest/most frustrating/most important piece of fiction to the seminar. You’ll share
    those, round-robin style. Through a discussion of those “problems,” we will not only
    diagnostically come up with alternatives and strategies for taking your story to the next
    level, but you’ll discover (and possibly be surprised) by how many of your fellow
    group-members come with similar (sometimes identical) challenges.
  • Worldbuilding for Fun and Profit. Dr. Charles E. Gannon? will use familiar science
    fictional and fantasy worlds as our basis of examining the needs of worldbuilding for
    different media, but most especially, we’ll be focusing on the written narrative and
    together explore and take a test drive through the incredible possibilities and pitfalls of
    serious and yet disciplined worldbuilding.
  • Image Creation Strategies in Digital Media Preston Stone will cover
    transferring traditional techniques to digital, using traditional media in conjunction with
    digital media, using layer and brush modes to create an image that is easy to edit, creating
    digital-only techniques like photo texture and using layers for rendering, communication
    with clients, and construction of brushes and magical effects.
  • Build a Character Build a Book Hear New York Times author, Christie Craig?, author
    of thirty-nine books, a proclaimed character-driven writer, do an in-depth talk about how
    plot, setting, and conflict can and maybe should start in the building-character stage of
    writing.
  • How to Tell a Story With a Single Image This 4 hour class with legendary Artist Dave
    Dorman? will cover how to build a dynamic picture, an important skill for every artist as
    you build your portfolio of illustrations, covers and standalone work. Explore the use of
    perspective, emotions, action, message and balance in you art.
  • Comics 101 Workshop learn the basics of creating comics with DC Comic artist Chad
    Hardin. This Workshop will cover everything you need to know about the basics of
    creating artwork for comic books including: drawing from imagination, basic anatomy,
    gesture, framing panels, perspective and the finished page.
  • Convincing Creature Design When dealing with fantasy and sci-fi representational art,
    the goal is often to have the viewer accept the image as reality, despite the elements being
    imaginary. In this class, Rob Carlos will teach you what to consider when trying to make
    your fantastic creatures believable to your audience. This includes anatomy, function,
    environmental factors, and reference to real-world counterparts.
  • Lunch with the Author is a terrific way for a limited number of people to get up close
    and personal with an author. Sit down with Bestselling Author Lynn Kurland? to discuss
    books and writing. The meal will be Buffet style provided by a catering service. Seating
    is limited.
  • Fine-Tuning Your Fiction In this class Chelsea Quinn Yarbro will provide students
    with a variety of ways to improve their story-telling, including various techniques to
    make their writing clearer and stronger, basic structure of story telling (A story needs a
    beginning, a middle, and an end, preferably in that order) How to give your Protagonist
    and your Antagonist a star’s entrance, and why they need one.

Special Events

  • Artemis: Space Bridge Simulator lets you turn the space into the bridge of a spaceship.
    You and your friends assume the jobs of Captain, Helm, Science, Communication,
    Engineering, and Weapon Control. Together you operate your ship and defend the sector
    from evil aliens. The crew of the USS White Buffalo will be running Artemis: Spaceship
    Bridge Simulator to SaltCON 2018! The USS White Buffalo also brings the ability to
    play different ships and to even choose your enemies!
  • SibScript Awards Ceremony Fyrecon is pleased to welcome Sibyl’s Scriptorium, Æther
    Illustration Contest, DragonComet Short Story Contest, Odyssey Poetry Contest, and
    PhoenixMoon Graphic Novel Contest. Celebrate with SibScript as they announce the
    2017 contest winners at this public event. Winners are picked from all divisions: young
    school age, school age, and adults.
  • Killer Elevator Practice having to pitch in an instant with no prep time. Can you think
    on your feet? Will you freeze or will you be eaten by the elevator doors? Try out your
    skills in our low stake game where we give you an idea to present and the agents and
    editors to present it to. Who will make it to the last round and earn the coveted Killer
    Elevator prizes?
  • VR Demo VR has become practical at last. Come see a hands-on demonstration of a
    commercial VR simulation used to train heavy equipment operators to improve skills,
    safety, and efficiency.
  • Live Photo Shoot with the Utah Mermaids In this event Vladimir Chopine? will do a
    live photo shoot with the Utah Mermaids teaching participants techniques for capturing
    images.
  • Photo Booth, run by Vladimir Chopine, is available to all attendees to have their photos
    taken professionally.
  • Paragon City Games will host gaming sessions and events during the conference.
    What’s in a Name is a game event where participants must guess the title of the book
    which has been converted to synonyms.
  • 3-to-1 Editing Sessions Sign up for a session to learn about editing or just get a new
    perspective on your writing. Don’t forget your favorite red pen. Let’s make those
    manuscripts bleed!
  • Art Portfolio Reviews Art portfolios can be your first introduction to perspective clients
    or employers. Make sure your first impression is a strong one as artists will review your
    portfolios personally.
  • Pitch Sessions pitch story and game ideas to editors and agents in the industry.
  • Book Launches
  • Art Show featuring the science fiction and fantasy art of guests, artists in the community,
    and beyond.

Participating Guests

  • Johnny Worthen I write what I like to read,” says Johnny. “That guarantees me at least
    one fan.” JOHNNY WORTHEN is an award-winning, best-selling author, voyager, and
    damn fine human being! He is the tie-dye wearing writer of the nationally acclaimed, #1
    Kindle best-selling ELEANOR, THE UNSEEN. He’s an instructor at the University of
    Utah and an acquisitions editor for OMNIUM GATHERUM, a publisher of unique dark
    fantasy, weird fiction, and horror.
  • Robert J Defendi Robert J Defendi was one of the writers for Savage Seas for the game
    Exalted. He’s worked on SPYCRAFT, SHADOWFORCE ARCHER and the
    STARGATE SG-1 roleplaying game. He wrote the current incarnation of
    SPACEMASTER. As the publisher of FINAL REDOUBT PRESS, he designed and
    released the critically acclaimed setting THE ECHOES OF HEAVEN. He was featured
    in WRITERS OF THE FUTURE XIX, and WHEN DARKNESS COMES.
  • Keira Drake is a full-time Young Adult author whose debut novel, THE CONTINENT,
    the first in a trilogy was published by Harlequin Teen.
  • Jill Bowers Jill Bowers is a young adult fantasy author and creator of the IMMORTAL
    WRITERS book series. She was the sole writer of the award-winning show OLDE
    TYME RADIO on Aggie Radio Station and has dabbled in stage play writing as well.
  • Al Carlisle Al Carlisle has a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology. Al Carlisle’s interest was in
    studying the violent mind and was able to work with many violent offenders who shared
    their stories with him. He has have published three books and is working on a fourth.
  • Jana S. Brown She’s been involved in publishing as an Author, Editor, Presenter, Slush
    Reader, and grundle of other positions for over 20 years. Her published works include
    magazine and newspaper articles, DESERT RAINS, a Science Fiction Western Romance,
    and FALLEN STONE, an Urban Fantasy.
  • Julie Frost Her short fiction has appeared in WRITERS OF THE FUTURE, THE
    DISTRICT OF WONDERS, COSMOS, UNLIKELY STORY, PLASMA FREQUENCY,
    STUPEFYING STORIES, and many other venues. Her first novel, PACK DYNAMICS,
    was released in 2015 by WordFire Press.
  • Eric G. Swedin is a Professor of History at Weber State University. His doctorate is in
    the history of science and technology. His publications include numerous articles, six
    history books, four science fiction novels, and a historical mystery novel. His WHEN
    ANGELS WEPT: A WHAT-IF HISTORY OF THE CUBAN MISSILE CRISIS won the
    2010 Sidewise Award for Alternate History.
  • Dan Willis caught the eye of Wizards of the Coast, and he began writing for their
    DRAGONLANCE: THE NEW ADVENTURES series. Most recently, Dan worked with
    NYT Bestselling author, Tracy Hickman on a new alternate history Civil War series,
    DRAGONS OF THE CONFEDERACY. The first book, LINCOLN’S WIZARD, along
    with Dan’s standalone steampunk western, THE FLUX ENGINE are also available.
  • Jemma Young is a freelance illustrator as well as the creator artist for CHILDREN OF
    ELDAIR. She has colored comics professionally and has done book covers, design work,
    and illustration.
  • Sean Nathan Ricks has been a professional artist for more than 20 years and enjoys
    painting a broad selection of styles and genre.
  • Brian C. Hailes His Modern Polygamy and Mormon Fundamentalism: The Generations
    after the Manifesto (Salt Lake City: Kofford Books, 2007) was awarded the “Best Book
    of 2007” prize from the John Whitmer Historical Association.
  • Rowan North Rowan North has been creating art for as long as she can remember;
    always looking at life a little differently! She creates illustrations and art to immerse
    others into her imaginary worlds, inspiring them to follow their own dreams.
  • Jay Barnson is a writer, software engineer, and an award-winning video game
    developer. He has written for THE ESCAPIST and CIRSOVA magazines, and has been
    published in numerous anthologies, most recently ALTERED STATES II: A Cyberpunk
    Anthology. He is the first-place winner in the 2016 DragonComet award.
  • John M. Olsen experiments with the creative process, whether building stories, art,
    software, poetry, woodworking, or anything else. His published works include fiction in
    multiple genres, chapters in several books on computer graphics and game design, and
    poetry.
  • Natasha Smith Natasha Ence has been playing Table-top RPGs since she was seven
    years old and now works as a professional Game Master. Table-top gaming and a
    voracious love of stories lead her to study literature, teaching, and creative writing at
    university. She is also a co-host and creative director for the podcast Hatching Owlbears.
  • Martin Greening Craig Nybo has written and published several books. As president of
    mediaRif, a Utah-based, marketing agency, Craig oversees advertising, marketing, and
    special projects for large companies, including Dentrix, Young Living, The Utah State
    Fair, and 3M. As a professional musician, Craig composes and produces high-profile
    stage productions for major corporate conventions. He also composes and records music
    under his own name and with his band.

Created by showrunner Dawnray Ammon, FyreCon in its second year is shaping up to be the place you need to be if you seek a professional career in any creative field. It’s rocket fuel for the mind.

Register for this event online through June 17th at https://www.fyrecon.com/registration/ or
in person during the event. Regular pricing for General Admission is $50. Master class pricing varies by class
and includes general admission. Pricing details are available online. Parking is free and
near UTA bus routes. Special conference pricing is available through June 15, 2018 at the
Holiday Inn. Details are available at https://www.fyrecon.com/venue/hotels/?.

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