/ MarsCon 2022 - March 11 - March 13, 2022

Program Ideas Page

We are taking suggestions for both virtual and in-person events. Please submit your ideas below.

MarsCon programming is driven by our attendees. Please share in the fun by posting your ideas for programming here—talks you’d like to hear or give, presenters/performers you would recommend, subjects or activities of interest to you and other fans…

This plan has served us well for a few years now, so... read the ideas list… if you see a program event you want to help with drop us an email. If you have an idea for an event that isn’t yet listed jump to the form and tell us about it.

By getting beginning programming suggestions online fairly early we’re hoping to stir your creative juices and generate even more great programming suggestions.

we need to use avaliable civid scanner technology
We need to use available covid scanner detection technology. It is about time that we deploy technology that we actually have. They developed a device called the covidhunter covid detection scanner device and why it should be deployed

Suggested by ellenlangsetmo on Tuesday, March 08, 2022 at 18:27:35

Lady Bright, or doing time travel with FTL
Presentation and discussion. A 15 minute presentation on what the Lorentz transformation is and how to do time travel with it, followed by a discussion of time travel, science fiction, and relevance to society.

Suggested by Gerald David Nordley on Tuesday, February 15, 2022 at 00:59:45

90 Year Starship
This would be a solo presentation. Ten years ago, Adam Crowl and I presented a paper at the 100 year staship conference which laid out a technology path to a propulsion system able to take people to the stars by 2111. It involves relativistic pellets, magnetic mirrors, and self-replicating construction systems, to name a few. There are 90 years left; how far down this road has technology come?

Suggested by Gerald David Nordley on Tuesday, February 15, 2022 at 00:44:46

How to game in a COVID world
This pane will discuss how you can hang out with other people using a variety of technical platforms. Also educating people on cheap or free resources to accomplish this. Event will be streamed on Twitch (screen capture only, no guests willb e filmed) but voices may be hear.

Suggested by Matt "Cyber Urza" McMillan on Sunday, February 13, 2022 at 14:19:21

Pokemon through the Years
Pokemon is a beloved series of games, books, anime, and trading cards. How has it changed over the years? What do we like? What don't we like?

Suggested by Devan Ekmark on Thursday, February 10, 2022 at 10:29:49

Russell Gets The PICARD Timeline COMMUNICATOR to Lt. JAE
If you haven't watched the Videos Mission to Starbase Indy. - TRIP to INDIANA for Star Trek Part One AND Part Two -Please Do- Then you'll maybe see what I have already done. You can help me turn this all around and make Tracee, RUBY!, and Debbie get back to Paramount! Please, at least SUBSCRIBE to my Debbie Dee David YouTube Channel and Comment, that would help so much. If you want to do this let me know ASAP so I can try and get some Actor from Star Trek to at least be a part of this on Zoom or IDK something someway... but I'm running out of time. Dean Stockwell died two weeks before the Indiana Trip began and that didn't help either. Love Debbie

Suggested by Debbie Dee David on Saturday, February 05, 2022 at 01:08:57

SciFirepower Painting and Weathing Demo
Prop maker Erik Pakieser from Scifirepower demonstrates the methods he uses for painting and weathering props.

Suggested by Erik Pakieser on Monday, January 31, 2022 at 11:00:40

SciFirepower Prop Tour
Walk through of the SciFirepower collection in the Prop-A-Torium: prop replicas from Aliens, Star Wars, Blade Runner, and many other sci-fi and action films.

Suggested by Erik Pakieser on Monday, January 31, 2022 at 10:59:20

All Things John Wick
Discussion of the John Wick universe. Speculation about the High Table, the Continental, Johnâ s past, and where the series may go, as well as the production and behind-the-scenes of these films.

Suggested by Erik Pakieser on Monday, January 31, 2022 at 10:57:09

How do you build it?
Build your first prop? How do you do it? Erik Pakieser from SciFirepower explains the methods and materials for designing and building props; how to design the prop, materials and building methods, and how to cope with frustration and find joy in prop building.

Suggested by Erik Pakieser on Monday, January 31, 2022 at 10:56:18

Comfort Re-reads or Re-watches
Some of us have been going back to our 'comfort' books or shows in these times. What are some of your comfort stories? And why are they comforting?

Suggested by Kathryn Sullivan on Friday, January 28, 2022 at 15:01:02

The Twilight Zone
Seven years before Star Trek and a half-decade before Doctor Who, millions gathered around to enter another dimension...the Twilight Zone! Rod Serling's iconic sci-fi anthology has been imitated and referenced, but nothing comes close. Join these hardcore, lifelong TZ fans as they revisit favorite episodes, and discuss the legacy of the first- and arguably the greatest science fiction television show of all time...

Suggested by T. Aaron Cisco on Monday, January 24, 2022 at 15:13:19

For the Love of Miniatures
Let's talk about miniatures! Featuring an array of miniature enthusiasts with a combined sixty years of experience in the hobby. We discuss painting, prepping, collecting, what's old, what's new, and what needs to be made. How to use miniatures to enhance your game. Kitbashing and customization, 3D printing and Kickstarters. Q and A with our audience, slideshow of our work in the background, and handouts on many topics.Come share your enthusiasm and help this hobby grow!

Suggested by Laura Thurston on Monday, January 24, 2022 at 12:30:22

How to succeed on Tiktok
Are you having problems succeeding on Tiktok? Have trouble Jumping on the latest dance or trends on the Platform? Having trouble promoting your airwork which took you hours to make with only low views to show for It? What if I can tell you it's possible to succeed on Tiktok without relying on Danceing or Lip Singing to a trending song. It's possible to do since I have done it and will show you how to do it as well.

Suggested by tyler prawl on Monday, January 17, 2022 at 16:07:34

Evolution of A Comic Strip: From "Sa-Bom Jim" to "Jim & Celeste"
Join Artist GoH Jon Sloan as he discusses the twists and turns he has encountered since launching his first mini-comic, "Sa-Bom Jim" in 2004. Jon will talk about current characters and plots, as well as discuss feedback from readers and go over possible directions to be considered.

Suggested by Jon Sloan on Sunday, January 16, 2022 at 21:50:54

WebComics What's All Involved?
Join MarsCon Artists GoH as he discusses what to plan for if you are thinking of diving head-first into the wide, wild world of being a webcomic artist/writer!

Suggested by Jon Sloan on Sunday, January 16, 2022 at 21:44:27

Before Black Panther: Forgotten Representation in Sci-Fi Films & TV shows
From Glynn Williams and Richard Daystrom in the 60s, to Aunty Entity and Meteor Man in the 80s, to Blade and Niobe in the 90s and beyond, diverse representation have been part of science fiction entertainment for decades. Here's a look at the pioneering, groundbreaking, and sometimes cringe-inducing, portrayals of BIPOC characters in sci-fi tv and movies...

Suggested by T. Aaron Cisco on Tuesday, December 14, 2021 at 18:04:04

Fifth Element Silver Anniversary
Hard to believe 25 years have passed since the release of Luc Besson's sci-fi/comedy geek favorite The Fifth Element. Discuss the parts of the film that aged like fine wine...and the parts that aged like warm milk...

Suggested by T. Aaron Cisco on Tuesday, December 14, 2021 at 17:58:39

Discovery season 4
discuss the new season of Star Trek Discovery

Suggested by Phantomsmask on Wednesday, December 08, 2021 at 20:22:52

Dr. Who Flux
Discussing Season 13 of Dr. Who Flux

Suggested by Phantomsmask on Wednesday, December 08, 2021 at 20:21:26

Star Trek -- Prodigy
A Children's program of Star Trek,

Suggested by Phantomsmask on Wednesday, December 08, 2021 at 20:20:33

White Tiger Haidong Gumdo (Matial Arts demo and mini training)
This is a demonstration of basic sword forms and cutting. With a time for Questions and Answers about the art.

Suggested by Steve Erickson on Monday, December 06, 2021 at 08:36:02

Real Space Cowboy or How I lived my Space Camp dream as an adult
Think your dreams of being an Astronaut are out of reach? Think Space Camp is just for kids? Wrong on both counts! Mike Urvand recently spent a week down at Space Camp in Huntsville, AL where he attended the Advanced Adult Space Academy. Find out the Analog Astronaut training he undertook and what lessons he learned from his time there.

Suggested by Mike Urvand on Tuesday, November 09, 2021 at 15:25:31

Are these the end times? Why does this feel like the end times..?
Many traditions and books prophesied the end of all things; madness, weird weather, false (and real) gods, chaos in the streets, Game shows in primetime, pandemics, signs portents and suchlike. Come for a light look at the end of days.

Suggested by Dave w. on Monday, October 11, 2021 at 12:55:57

Sick of apocalypse yet?
Did it seem like it would be less tedious in books and movies? Discuss.

Suggested by Rich on Thursday, September 30, 2021 at 15:20:02

Hentai Game Show
Description for the program: An adult (18+) game show where contestants compete for prizes. Volunteers from the audience come up and compete and play adult-themed games. These fun "naughty" games are for aliens and humans alike. Come show us your bawdy side, or just be a voyeur!

Suggested by Kevin Doheny on Monday, September 13, 2021 at 20:00:57

Wizarding World
Get ready to celebrate 25 years of Harry Potter! Galloping gargoyles â ¦ 2022 is the silver anniversary of J.K. Rowlingâ s magical classic Harry Potter and the Philosopherâ s Stone! In celebration of 25 years of Harry Potter magic, come talk about the books, films, play, parks, studio tours, shops and whole lot more as we celebrate the world of Harry Potter Tony Artym

Suggested by Tony Artym on Friday, August 13, 2021 at 11:40:08

New for 2022
All the events below were suggested in the height of the pandemic. Now that we are back to planning for a Real Live Con let us know new things you would like to see. :-)

Suggested by Webmaster! on Monday, July 19, 2021 at 19:09:31

Building a Better Martian
Would talk about researching and building full-scale studio prop replicas of both the Martian and the Martian Electronic Eye from George Pal's classic 1953 SF film "The War of the Worlds." Discussion would of course include details on the the film.

Suggested by Glen Swanson on Tuesday, March 02, 2021 at 21:18:41

Love the story, hate the author
Creators such as H.P. Lovecraft, J.K. Rowling, Joss Whedon and more have been proclaimed guilty of various â isms - racism, homophobia, sexism, etc. Whatâ s a fan to do when a storyteller with creations you love has a personal dark side? What level of proof is required to cross the line from accusation to guilt? Can a sufficiently uplifting plot redeem its author? Is there a line you will not cross?

Suggested by Mr Gravy on Wednesday, February 17, 2021 at 23:19:35

How to make/find/modify costumes, accessories, and props without breaking the bank. Cosplay is for everybody and every BODY, and also, for every budget!

Suggested by T. Aaron Cisco on Wednesday, February 17, 2021 at 15:27:04

Contemporary Afrofuturism: Reading with T. Aaron Cisco
Contemporary Afrofuturism and Indie author, T. Aaron Cisco, reads excerpts from his latest work, Rod String Nail Cloth, and discusses some of the ins and outs of DIY creating, writing, and selling the

Suggested by T. Aaron Cisco on Wednesday, February 17, 2021 at 15:25:03

Power for the Lunar Shadow
Night on the Moon lasts two weeks. It would seem a shame to shut everything down until the sun rises again, but clearly direct solar power isn't an option. What are some of the ideas for keeping lunar operations going at night?

Suggested by G. David Nordley on Thursday, February 11, 2021 at 13:39:28

Joseph Goebbels and the Villain's Journey
It would be difficult to create a science fiction or fantasy villain to match the real Joseph Goebbels, but he demonstrably happened, and it seems we have our own generation of ideological propagandists. His dictum that any lie repeated often enough becomes taken for the truth has killed hundreds of thousands of pandemic victims in our own day. What drove him? What can be done about his kind? What did he have in common with other science fiction, fantasy and real villains? Is he too much of a cardboard victim for saleable fiction? How did he become so detached from feelings for his fellow human beings? We can't ask his children. After he got to be Fuher for a day, he and his wife killed them before taking their own lives.

Suggested by G. David Nordley on Thursday, February 11, 2021 at 13:20:24

Dark Interstellar Habitats
Interstellar space has a lot of non-luminous rogue planets and other stuff between the stars. Could we, or others, make use of it? How?

Suggested by G. David Nordley on Thursday, February 11, 2021 at 12:44:50

Promising nearby stellar destinations.
We'll discuss some promising nearby stars in fiction and fact that might attract human settlers, either on planets or in space colonies made from local asteroid belts.

Suggested by G. David Nordley on Thursday, February 11, 2021 at 12:32:10

The Blazing Woman
"Rather than not be a mistress of a world, since fortune and the fates would give me none, I have made one of my own." So wrote Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle, in 1666. Her novel, "The Description of a New World, Called the Blazing-World," pioneered many ideas now common in science fiction and fantasy; a portal to a new world not of Earth, feminism, science fiction romance, an alien invasion, submarines, and much more. Cavendish was so unonventional as to be considered unhinged by many in her day, but she was also taken more seriously as a trail blazing natural philosopher of the enlightenment. We'll discuss her life, her writing, and her science in the context of her times, and how it still informs us.

Suggested by G. David Nordley on Thursday, February 11, 2021 at 12:24:16

Predictions on a Post-Pandemic Publishing World
The pandemic has clearly disrupted everything, including the releases of books that had been completed and were merely awaiting their big day. Book sellers and sales have had their ups and downs. Let's discuss how the pandemic has affected writers, editors, and publishers, and what we can expect the post-pandemic publishing landscape to look like. This can include both evidence from recent trends as well as conjecture.

Suggested by S.N.Arly on Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 22:55:05

Writing Exercises for Those Short on Time and Motivation and Those Seeking to Work Through Weaknesses
There are a lot of great exercises and activities out there for writers who are well beyond the basics of storycrafting. We're going to focus on some that are useful for writers who have found themselves short or time or motivation (hey, life interferes, we can work with that). We're going to explore some things you can try if you're working through a writing weakness but don't want to spend a year focusing on a novel that you're going to scrap as an exercise. We'll also talk about how to jump start your creativity if it's taken a walk. Writing sprints, prompts, trades, relays, even fanfiction may come up as we discuss ways to get out of a slump and improve as a writer.

Suggested by S.N.Arly on Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 22:48:37

Writing Craft: World Building â Hard vs Soft
Much like we have hard and soft science fiction, where hard does not equal more difficult but has a focused intent on scientific accuracy, hard world building involves having a well-established, clearly laid out plan before you start writing. Tolkien is the prime example in fantasy. Soft world building is something that continues to grow over time, and evokes more of the feeling of other worldliness. Studio Ghibliâ s films are an example of this. What are the advantages and disadvantages to both these styles of world building? Which do you favor writing and reading, and why? Are there types of stories that intrinsically lend themselves to one style over the other?

Suggested by S.N.Arly on Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 22:46:32

Preparing for Readings
A great way for writers to share or showcase their work is through readings (live at conventions, bookstores, or other events, or recorded as pod-casts). Writing is a solitary activity, whereas reading is closer to acting, and not all of us feel comfortable with this change of venue. What can we do to best prepare ourselves for this? How should you go about choosing a story or excerpt? What are good options for practicing? How can this form of publicity go very wrong? What can you do at the reading to make things go smoothly? How does the process differ if you are doing a live webcast rather than an in-person event?

Suggested by S.N.Arly on Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 22:31:11

Not My Beautiful Minnesota
It has become fairly common for urban fantasy writers to place their stories in a modern world analogue. What purpose does this serve? What are the advantages and how does this work? What are the disadvantages and how can you avoid them? Who does it well?

Suggested by S.N.Arly on Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 22:28:18

Group Speed-Write
Let's get together and have a writing sprint party. Everyone can pull a prompt from the hat. Spend 2 minutes plotting or planning and then spend 25 minutes throwing words at the page. When we're done we'll talk about how this kind of exercise can help you work through a block or fit in writing when you don't have a lot of time. We'll talk about ways this can boost your confidence in your writing and even work into your regular longer story and novel process.

Suggested by S.N.Arly on Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 17:38:02

Fight Scenes in Spec Fic â YA Edition
Like regular or adult speculative fiction, fight scenes appear in a lot of YA spec fic stories. Why are these included? What do they bring to the story? What is the difference between a real fight and a good film or literary fight (what doesn't play out well on film or on paper)? YA includes young characters who fight, some as a means of survival and some as a way of life. Do/can kids and teens fight the same as adults? How do we avoid making our young heroes unrealistic (and essentially adults masquerading as children or teens)? What needs to be done differently when writing younger fighters? Can kids and teens realistically fight off adults and monsters? What can be done to make this work in a way that feels authentic?

Suggested by S.N.Arly on Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 17:27:20

Editing your Writing
There are several steps in the writing process that are needed to produce a complete and engaging story. Editing is one step that a lot of writers initially dislike (and some never really enjoy). There's a lot of tricks we can use to make this process easier or better for us. Let's talk about how we go through our own work to create something polished and ready for readers.

Suggested by S.N.Arly on Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 17:17:54

Creative Crop Rotation
When farmers grow the same crop over and over in the same field for years, it depletes the soil and makes the field less productive. Alternating crops, leaving the field fallow, or planting a cover crop are all ways to restore the productivity. Creativity can be managed in much the same way. We see writers who churn out high volumes of the same thing over and over, and oftentimes the work gets less interesting and less original than the earlier work. For your creative crop rotation, what activities do you use to engage your creativity that don't include writing? For many writers, fallow time is seen as unproductive and undesirable. Failure to allow for it can result in writers block and low enthusiasm for any writing. How can you fill your fallow time, where you aren't working on something creative, what do you do that lets your creative side rest without guilt of self-shame? Cover crops are planted with the intent that they will not be harvested and used. They are often simply plowed back in to enrich the soil. What creative writing activities, exercises, or practices can you engage in for your crop cover?

Suggested by S.N.Arly on Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 15:43:16

Bedtime Stories - readings series
I'm thinking a series of themed readings for the evenings of the convention (since we can't really have the usual parties). Possible theme groupings could be: Awesome adventures Fairy tales (with cookies and milk) Things that go bump in the night (for those who prefer to go to bed scared)

Suggested by S.N.Arly on Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 15:36:09

Artistic Inspiration â Pandemic Edition
Authors and artists discuss what inspires them to write or create, and how their tried and true models have worked (or needed modification) during the pandemic. What sorts of things spontaneously inspire you? What things do you seek out when you need inspiration? What does this look like in the world of lockdown? How has the pandemic feed or crushed your creativity? We've all heard of writers' retreats, is there a good way for people to hold their own or communal virtual writers retreats? What squelches your enthusiasm in a big picture way? What are the little daily things that get in the way? How can we beat those back to a manageable level?

Suggested by S.N.Arly on Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 15:33:11

Promote Your Work!
What are the wackiest ways people promote their books? Or comics? Or art? Which methods really draw fans to the table? Posters? Silly hats? Contests? Parties? Do book trailers, Facebook advertising, eBay, really work? Where do you get reviews?

Suggested by Valerie Estelle Frankel on Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 12:54:30

Jewish Science Fiction
Peter S. Beagle, Harlan Ellison, Jane Yolen, Robert Silverberg, and many other authors blended speculative fiction with their cultural heritage. Now, with the Own Voices movement, thereâ s hot teen Jewish vampires, Sephardic monster slayers, and Orthodox superheroines in long skirts. More works are appearing in translation even as authors take a new pride in their Jewish heritage and create the long-sought â Jewish Narnia.â Whatâ s breaking boundaries and what are our old favorites? Letâ s discuss.

Suggested by Valerie Estelle Frankel on Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 12:53:04

Fourth Wave Feminism
A new kind of feminism is hitting the big screen (along with the small one and recent books). It's aggressively multicultural, intersectional, with much more agency and own voices. Heroines can save themselves, quest for something other than marriage, and wear non-exploitative outfits. Of course, the internet era also means lots of trolls and pushback, but also creators listening to the fans in new ways. Who's doing it right? Let's discuss.

Suggested by Valerie Estelle Frankel on Saturday, January 30, 2021 at 12:50:26

BroadUniverse Rapid Fire Reading
Come hear the members of BroadUniverse Literary Coalition read from their latest works and get a sampler of stories across the science fiction, fantasy, and horror genres.

Suggested by Terri Bruce on Wednesday, January 27, 2021 at 21:11:56

Social Relationships in the 21st Century
A panel discussion on social relationships in the 21st Century. The internet and social media have changed the face of social relationships forever - from deep friendships and romantic relationships between people who have never met in person, to the ever-shifting online social circle of followers and following to online conventions, what are the new paradigms of social relationships? Why is "unfriending" acquaintances online so hard? Are online relationships as durable and long-lasting as in person friendships? How has shifting ALL relationships (personal and professional) online due to the pandemic changed those relationships?

Suggested by Terri Bruce on Wednesday, January 27, 2021 at 21:08:41

Art of the Pandemic
Art of the Pandemic What has isolation or being essential done to your inspiration? Did you fall into your art as a distraction from the woes of EVERYTHING in 2020? Did you change your preferred medium - we hope it didnâ t inhibit you, but itâ s okay if it did. Youâ re not alone either! Come talk to us about it With Jon Sloan, Artist Guest of Honor, and Nora Leverson, Art Show co-chair

Suggested by Nora Leverson on Wednesday, January 27, 2021 at 20:56:24

Future Cops
What is the future of law enforcement? How will new technologies help police in the future, and present new opportunities for criminals? Examine the impact of technology and social change on the police of the future.

Suggested by CL on Tuesday, January 26, 2021 at 18:58:27

From Head to Page to Print
Join a group of indie authors as they discuss and share tips on developing, writing, and publishing your story/book ideas.

Suggested by T. Aaron Cisco on Tuesday, January 26, 2021 at 12:08:44

21st Century Star Trek
Discovery, Short Treks, Picard, Lower Decks, Prodigy, the last few years have given us a ton of new Trek! Join a panel of Trekkies as they discuss, debate, and compare all the new series!

Suggested by T. Aaron Cisco on Tuesday, January 26, 2021 at 10:12:05

â The Do-Jahng: Just What Is This Comic About, Anyway?!â
To the uninitiated, navigating the pages and plots of Jon Sloanâ s â Sa-Bom Jimâ and sequel series, â The Do-Jahngâ may be quite daunting! Never fear! In this panel, creator/writer/artist (and Artist GoH) Jon Sloan will introduce and discuss whoâ s who and whatâ s what in his webcomic work. How it started, whatâ s going on currently, and some discussion about where it might lead.

Suggested by Jon Sloan on Monday, January 25, 2021 at 08:28:15

View on the Future of Humanity as we Countdown to the Moon
December 17, 2019 Nathan Price started of project of interviewing a person a day to find out what people think about our return to the moon. In interviews from less than a minute to more than 3 hours Nathan has captured a wide set of perspectives on the future of humanity using the context of our return to the moon. All the interview are published (mostly unedited) to http://CountdownToTheMoon.org In this presentation he will share his experience of how to talk to your fellow citizen. And share some of the more interesting highlights from his conversations. And it will confirm and challenge some of your hopes and fears. At the end of this, you will have a broader sense on what people think about the future of humanity. What it takes to do something every single day without fail. How to get over fear of talking to others. Become more aware of how others might interpret you. ======= Did you know that NASA is sending people to the moon in 2024? Most people don't. What do you think about it? Largely people are supportive. But some people have doubts. What about opportunity costs? What about messing up the moon? Don't we have enough problems here? The government wastes so much money, glad to see they are doing something inspiring. Would you go if it were safe and affordable? You would be amazed who would and wouldn't go.

Suggested by Nathan Price on Sunday, January 24, 2021 at 19:20:01

Cut the Boring Parts
Writers are told they need to cut out all the boring parts. But boring to whom? Those who like every last detail of a ship or weapons? Those who want only action? What about quiet bits of worldbuilding - should they stay or go?

Suggested by Kathryn Sullivan on Tuesday, January 19, 2021 at 10:44:45

Ship Protectors
Andre Norton, Mercedes Lackey and Anne McCaffrey all had ship's cats to protect their trading vessels against vermin that crept in to damage ships and the goods they carried. What other protectors have various authors used to defend physical and mental health of ships and crews?

Suggested by Kathryn Sullivan on Tuesday, January 19, 2021 at 10:36:25

Poetry and Song-writing, or Parody Workshop
a hands-on workshop, in which participants collaborate on writing a poem, which may or may not be set to a well-known song... in which case, it's a Filk Parody Workshop.

Suggested by Roberta Rogow on Monday, January 18, 2021 at 19:14:22

Writing and Selling Flash Fiction
Flash fiction does not often get the same level of awards attention as short fiction, but it can be fun to write. Learn about some of the pitfalls of writing flash fiction, as well as some tips and tricks to make your flash fiction better. We'll also talk about places to sell flash fiction, which can also be a great way to read and learn more about writing it!

Suggested by Dawn Vogel on Monday, January 18, 2021 at 18:38:17

Writers and Their Pets
You see mentions sometimes in the author bios, some variation of "lives with a cat", "lives with two dogs" or "lives with a turtle, a parakeet and two cats who ignore them all". Now with Zoom you have the chance to meet some of them and discuss their impact (or lack of) on their writing. Audience members are encouraged to have their pets on screen as well!

Suggested by Kathryn Sullivan on Monday, January 18, 2021 at 11:30:36

Post Meridian Radio Players show
I am the convention liaison for the Post Meridian Radio Players. The PMRP has had some success offering previously recorded shows to online conventions (such as DerpyCon and Arisia) and having folks available to answer questions and talk about the shows. For MarsCon, I think a couple of our original productions would fit in. One is "The Silver Shade", our homage to pulp heroes of the golden age of radio theater. Another would be "The Duke of Newbury Street", our take on the "gentleman thief" genre. We also have recordings in other genres, such as mysteries and horror and adaptations of classics, if you would prefer. If you would be interested, contact me and we can see which show would work best. For more info on the PMRP, please visit www.pmrp.org.

Suggested by Michael McAfee on Monday, January 18, 2021 at 11:06:47

LEGO Chit Chat
Chatting about all things LEGO. New, current, and past sets. Minifigs through the years. Building techniques. Home goods merchandise. AFOL, LUG, and MOC. Where to find more pieces. Discussion and Q & A.

Suggested by Penndra on Monday, January 18, 2021 at 01:39:58

Arts and Crafts Follow-Along
In theme with "Forces of Darkness", I would like to present a craft session, or two, to create a prop or craft based on Elder Scrolls Online's newest Chapter, Oblivion. Using entirely common household items, I will walk the audience through upcycling junk into game props. The Amulet of Kings could be an option. I'll provide a supply list closer to the convention date so that the Audience can craft along with me.

Suggested by Penndra on Monday, January 18, 2021 at 01:26:07

Elder Scrolls Online: Oblivion
Taking a look at the newest Elder Scrolls Online Chapter, Oblivion. And talking about the game in general.

Suggested by Penndra on Monday, January 18, 2021 at 01:07:23

Assistive Technology in Science Fiction
writing track. What's the latest and upcoming technology to expand human senses and abilities? It's too easy to bring the technology of the past to stories of the future, so attend this discussion about what we can do now to assist those with disabilities, where we're going with this in the future, and what the implications are for those _without_ disabilities. Please include Kaden.E.Colton@gmail.com, who teaches adults how to use these technologies.

Suggested by Tyler Tork on Sunday, January 17, 2021 at 13:13:52

Latest trends in YA/MG
Despite publication delays, new YA and Middle Grade books did appear in 2020. What are some of the latest trends observed?

Suggested by Kathryn Sullivan on Friday, January 15, 2021 at 15:57:18

Minnesota Mufon - UFOs in Minnesota
Stories of actual Minnesota sightings throughout the years. Videos of presentations exist.

Suggested by Kathy Blixrud on Tuesday, January 12, 2021 at 11:42:22

the history of Horror Games
From Haunted House on the original Atari, to Resident Evil on the Playstation, or the more recent Alien Isolation. Horror Games have a long and diverse history in gaming. From the good, the bad, to the sleeper hits let's talk about horror games.

Suggested by Avery Kirchner on Sunday, December 13, 2020 at 15:24:47

Do you like Dark Fantasy or Edgy Scifi
What are you favorite dark, horror, or edgy scifi and fantasy books, movies, comics, and games. Also what are your least favorite. What makes a good Dark Fiction vs a bad Dark Fiction.

Suggested by Avery Kirchner on Sunday, December 13, 2020 at 15:19:57

Western TV Animation that get's serious
A lot of Western TV animation is used for comedy and sitcoms, but occasionally you get a show that uses the medium to tell a more serious story. Like Avatar The Last Airbenders, Gargoyles, Batman The Animated Series. Let's discuss some of our favorite western animated shows that have a more serious story.

Suggested by Avery Kirchner on Sunday, December 13, 2020 at 15:13:16

Next Gen Film Graphics and 3D Game Design
Modelers, Animators, Game Designers and Filmmakers welcome. Is there any upcoming features for autodesk/unity/unreal engine 5 you are excited for, what shortcoming do you hope get fixed in the next gen of software, curious about 3D graphics technology, any hopes for the future of 3D animation and game design, or just enjoy 3D games or animation. If any of this applies to you please join us for a open discussion.

Suggested by Avery Kirchner on Sunday, December 13, 2020 at 15:08:06

The Great Game Development Discussion
Do you like tabletop games, enjoy playing video games, make games or curious about making games. Join us in a open discussion about game design and theory.

Suggested by Avery Kirchner on Sunday, December 13, 2020 at 15:00:41

Upcoming Video Games
Some trailers for upcoming video games.

Suggested by Avery Kirchner on Sunday, December 13, 2020 at 14:56:49

Toyline with great plots
From the adventures of GI Joe, to the battles of Transfromers, the fantasy worldbuilding of Megablox's dragons, or the cheesy edginess of yugioh, and of course the more recent Ninjago. Let's talk about ours and your favorite toylines plots and lore.

Suggested by Avery Kirchner on Sunday, December 13, 2020 at 14:52:49

Let's make a bad reboot
Join us in a interactive experience where we try to come up with a hilariously bad reboot of Back to The Future

Suggested by Avery Kirchner on Sunday, December 13, 2020 at 14:48:49

Bionicle: Race to Save a Dying God
How a lego theme used its unique setting of the insides of a giant robot to bring about a extremely deep story that touched a generation of kids.the

Suggested by Avery Kirchner on Sunday, December 13, 2020 at 11:44:48

Pre-complain about the next Star Wars movie
I have a very bad feeling about this

Suggested by A. Nonymous on Monday, November 30, 2020 at 20:34:49

â Building Up A Webcomic
Do you have a burning desire to tell your story in comics format to share with The Universe? Not sure how to give that massive saga in your head the jumpstart it needs? Artist Guest of Honor, Jon Sloan will share his suggestions on drawing and writing your own webcomic, as well as what tools and venues to explore.

Suggested by Jon Sloan (Artist GoH) on Tuesday, October 06, 2020 at 05:47:30

Video Gaming Evolution
Relive past glory as we discuss video games throughout history. Visual aids will be on hand.

Suggested by Cool beans on Wednesday, September 02, 2020 at 19:37:37

How to start a Podcast hosted by Streaming Thoughts
Have you ever considered starting a podcast? Where to begin? Where to host? Is it as simple as talking into your phone's voice memo recorder for an hour? Let Streaming Thoughts answer your questions as we stream our thoughts on all things nerdy about podcasts.

Suggested by Streaming Thoughts on Wednesday, August 05, 2020 at 21:33:21

Con Newbie Orientation & What Draws You to Fandom?
Panelists and participants alike are encouraged to share your earliest sci-fi, fantasy, ... memory that started you on your journey. Discuss what brought you to con and what you are hoping to do at con. Panelists will also provide newbies with options and tips for how to get the most out of your con experience.

Suggested by CL on Sunday, July 12, 2020 at 10:59:24

Dream Cosplay
It's time to put together your dream cosplay! Pretend that money is not an issue. Who are you now? Chat with fellow cosplayers, gather ideas, and take a few steps toward making that cosplay dream a reality.

Suggested by CL on Sunday, July 12, 2020 at 10:49:04

Lockdown Fantasies/If I Were Immune...
Think along the lines of â If I Won the Lottery...â Say it was confirmed you were somehow immune from COVID-19, and you had carte blanche to do whatever you wanted to do. What would you do, or what would you have done differently. Fantasies aside, what activities did you miss most during lockdown?

Suggested by CL on Sunday, July 12, 2020 at 10:43:34

Fandom Fashions Panel
Which series excelled in wardrobe? Looking for source material, ideas and suggestions for what to watch to inspire the next/greatest cosplay.

Suggested by CL on Sunday, July 12, 2020 at 10:29:29

Best sci fi written in the last twenty years
Bring your best recommendations. Weâ re taking notes.

Suggested by CL on Sunday, July 12, 2020 at 10:24:31

Virtual Con Review Time
What virtual cons and experiences helped you maintain sanity during COVID-19 days? What worked or didnâ t work? What did you miss or, surprisingly, not miss about in person cons? Whatâ s your favorite takeaway?

Suggested by CL on Sunday, July 12, 2020 at 10:21:02

Casting/Re-casting the Classics
Have a favorite book or comic series that seems ideal for a film adaptation? What current talent would you cast in the main roles? For existing cult classics, are there any actors who can measure up to the originals for a potential reboot? Youâ re in the directorâ s chair now. Who would you cast? What would they do to enhance the characters you adore?

Suggested by CL on Sunday, July 12, 2020 at 10:13:40

Epic Fails & Runaway Hits!
Episode I aside, what series/films did you most eagerly anticipate which fell far short of the mark, leading to utter disappointment? Likewise, when you were at your most skeptical, where did you find some unexpected gems? Letâ s chat about the hits and misses.

Suggested by CL on Sunday, July 12, 2020 at 10:04:15

Letâ s Dish on Cons!
What are the silliest, craziest, best memories from hanging with your friends at a con? Open discussion, so please bring a couple happy or slightly cringe-y stories to share!

Suggested by CL on Sunday, July 12, 2020 at 09:47:41

Rediscovering Science Fiction/Fantasy During Lockdown
As events and outings were cancelled, and we spent more than the usual amount of time indoors, what â comfortâ fiction did you rely or rediscover as a pleasant escape or occasional respite from darker days?

Suggested by CL on Sunday, July 12, 2020 at 09:37:51

Plagues & Pandemics in Fiction
The forces of darkness were hard at work disrupting 2020 with a real-life pandemic. Plagues and pandemics have long been the subjects of speculative fiction. George Orrâ s disastrous dream which caused a plague and wiped out billions in Ursula Le Guinâ s â The Lathe of Heavenâ comes to mind. How does present-day reality compare to the stories many of us grew up on?

Suggested by CL on Sunday, July 12, 2020 at 09:25:43

Hexbug BattleBots Tournament
Fighting Hexbug BattleBots for really lame prizes!

Suggested by The Other M on Saturday, June 06, 2020 at 16:41:12

Star Trek Universe
A talk about the Emerald anniversary (55 years) of Star Trek, We will cover all 9 shows, the 13 movies, and the many shows in development, There will be spoilers, plus mix in some good memorizes from Star Treks past. With: Tony Artym, Joan Marie Verba

Suggested by Tony Artym on Friday, June 05, 2020 at 10:53:26

The Dresden Files
Celebrating the Platinum anniversary (20 years) of The Dresden Files Series, telling the story of Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden, Chicagoâ s first (and only) Wizard P.I. The series is slated to run 23-24 books: 20-21 â case booksâ like weâ ve seen so far, capped by a Big Apocalyptic Trilogy, because who doesnâ t love apocalyptic trilogies? The 3 Microfiction, Book 16, Peace Talks, and Book 17, Battle Ground, will be spoiled along with all the rest of the books. With: Tony Artym, Crystal Therese, Tim Strong

Suggested by Tony Artym on Friday, June 05, 2020 at 10:52:05

Sharknado - Fabulously Awful!!!
Sharknado Series - the Good the Bad and the Really Bad!!! Why did we watch? Why doesn't everyone?

Suggested by The Other M on Thursday, June 04, 2020 at 20:14:26

How to make a successful Web series - Now U Know
Sam Hedden and her producer Andy Watson sit down and talk about the challenges and positives of starting a web series ground up. They share some of their favorite guests and occurrences. And advice for anyone looking to start their own web series.

Suggested by Sam Hedden on Wednesday, May 27, 2020 at 16:28:40

Women in Filmmaking
A panel of women in the filmmaking industry. They talk about positives, negatives, obstacles over come in this industry. The importance of women as filmmakers, actresses, and more.

Suggested by Sam Hedden on Wednesday, May 27, 2020 at 16:25:27

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Don’t assume all program rooms come equiped with a projector and screen: If your presentation will need video goodies tell us now. We are learning it works best if presenters bring their own computers—that way they can be pretty sure their presentations will work... We can probably come up with adaptors for whatever type of video output is on your computer if you tell us in advance. If you are unsure what you have, here is a picture of many types of display outputs. If your presentation will have sound we will need to know that as well—if your sound output is not a 3.5mm plug what is it? The most important thing is to let us know in advance.


If nobody suggests an event, it won’t happen. Thank you for your suggestions.

MarsCon 2022

“The future ain’t what it used to be”
March 11 - 13, 2022
In Person

Hilton Minneapolis/St. Paul Airport Mall of America
3800 American Blvd E
Bloomington, Minnesota
March 11 - 13, 2022

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