David Farland

MisCon 31 Guest of Honor

David Farland is an award-winning, international bestselling author with over 50 novels in print. He has won the Philip K. Dick Memorial Special Award for “Best Novel in the English Language” for his science fiction novel On My Way to Paradise, the Whitney Award for “Best Novel of the Year” for his historical novel In the Company of Angels, and he has won over seven awards—including the International Book Award and the Hollywood Book Festival, Grand Prize—for his fantasy thriller Nightingale. He is best known, however, for his New York Times bestselling fantasy series The Runelords.

Farland has written for major franchises such as Star Wars and The Mummy. He has worked in Hollywood greenlighting movies and doctoring scripts. He has been a movie producer, and he has even lived in China working as a screenwriter for a major fantasy film franchise.

As a writing instructor, Farland has mentored dozens who have gone on to staggering literary success, including such #1 New York Times Bestsellers as Brandon Mull (Fablehaven), Brandon Sanderson (Wheel of Time), James Dashner (The Maze Runner) and Stephenie Meyer (Twilight).

Farland judges L. Ron Hubbard’s Writers of the Future, the one of the largest worldwide writing competitions for new fantasy and science fiction authors. In the video game industry, he has been both a designer and a scripter and was the co-leader on the design team for StarCraft: Brood War. He set the Guinness World Record for the largest single-author, single-book signing.

David Farland has been hailed as “The wizard of storytelling” and his work has been called “compelling,” “engrossing,” “powerful,” “profound,” and “ultimately life-changing.”

As part of his dedication to helping other writers, David writes the David Farland’s #WritingTips, an email bulletin for writers. Many authors rave about how it has helped them. Out of devotion, he provides his #WritingTips for free.

Web site: http://www.davidfarland.com

Scheduled Panels and Presentations:

Key: panel=On a Panel moderator=Moderating game=GMing


  • panel Fri 2:00 - 2:50 PM, Early Bird Book Signing, Ballroom C
    Moderator: Justin Barba; Panelists: Carol Berg, C.J. Cherryh, Jane Fancher, David Farland, Ann Gimpel, James Glass, Randy Henderson, Michael Hodges, Peter Wacks (pjwacks)

    Some of our authors will sign books.

  • Break Fri 2:50 - Fri 4:00
  • panel Fri 4:00 - 4:50 PM, How to Spot a Cylon, Dragon Pavilion (1)
    Moderator: J.A. Pitts; Panelists: Aaron Douglas, David Farland, J.A. Pitts, Peter Wacks (pjwacks)

    Some robots, like Cylons, Replicants, and Terminators, lurk among us. Others, like R2D2 and Johnny 5, are obviously not human. Or are they? We'll take a look at the roles robots play in pop culture. What makes them tick? Why do they hate us so much? Are they going to take over? Do some of them have souls? Are they just possessions? Do they have rights? Why is BB-8 so cute?

  • panel Fri 5:00 - 5:50 PM, The Women of Star Wars, Dragon Pavilion (1)
    Panelists: Carol Berg, David Farland, Julie Frost, Andrea Howe

    Padme, Princess Leia, Rey, Jyn Urso: the women of Star Wars kick ass. Don't they? Let's discuss the roles these protagonists play. How are they different from the leading men in their respective stories? Does Star Wars do a better job than most franchises at portraying women as characters and not just plot devices? How?

  • Break Fri 5:50 - Fri 7:00
  • panel Fri 7:00 - 7:50 PM, Opening Ceremonies, Dragon Pavilion (1)
    Panelists: Justin Barba, Philo Barnhart, Aaron Douglas, Claire Eddy, David Farland, Amy Farrington

    Calling all Cylons, Replicants, and Teerminators! Come on in, grab a seat, and find out what's in store for you at MisCon 31. We'll meet our Guests of Honor, hand out some Golden Squid Awards, and have a little fun. Our seers, scientists, and sages tell us this will likely only run about half an hour unless the forces of chaos make us go longer.

  • Break Fri 7:50 - Sat 10:00
  • panel Sat 10:00 - 10:50 AM, The Flawed Hero: Writing Realistic Characters, Ballroom C
    Panelists: Carol Berg, David Farland, Deby Fredericks, Randy Henderson, L.F. Patten (Laurey)

    There are workbooks full of exercises to create well-rounded characters, but how do professional writers really do it? Do they actually know what a particular character would eat for breakfast? Let's discuss characters from the very start and maybe even create one of our own to show one way it can be done.

  • Break Sat 10:50 - Sat Noon
  • panel Sat Noon - 12:50 PM, Working With Subplots, Ballroom C
    Moderator: Carol Berg; Panelists: Carol Berg, David Farland, Peter Wacks (pjwacks)

    Learn how to weave subplots into your story without getting lost in the twists and turns of each story.

  • panel Sat 1:00 - 1:50 PM, Plot as a Verb, Dragon Pavilion (1)
    Panelists: David Farland, Esther Jones, Tod McCoy, Dean Wells

    Plot is a verb -- it has to move and do something. In this panel we'll discuss how to make your plot one non-stop rollercoaster ride. How might you do this if your plot involves very little actual action scenes?

  • Break Sat 1:50 - Sat 3:00
  • panel Sat 3:00 - 3:50 PM, Writers of the Future, Ballroom C
    Panelists: David Farland, Julie Frost, James Glass, Randy Henderson

    MisCon is proud to have many Writers of the Future winners among our panelists. In addition, this year's Author GoH, David Farland, is a judge for the contest! We'll discuss the ins and outs of the contest and why it's a great thing for writers.

  • Break Sat 3:50 - Sat 5:00
  • panel Sat 5:00 - 5:50 PM, The Power of Place, Dragon Pavilion (1)
    Moderator: Kyle Elliott (Big Kyle); Panelists: Carol Berg, Clay Cooper (Ol Scratch), Aaron Douglas, David Farland

    While people build places and things, places leave marks on people long after they’re gone. What places left marks on you after you were gone? Why? We’ll discuss the power places have over us, whether we’re talking about cities, restaurants, a nature spot, bad airports, etc.

  • Break Sat 5:50 - Sun Noon
  • panel Sun Noon - 12:50 PM, Pop Culture Perversion: Space Opera, Dragon Pavilion (1)
    Moderator: Kyle Elliott (Big Kyle); Panelists: Aaron Douglas, David Farland, Patrick Swenson, Peter Wacks (pjwacks)

    Has the mainstreaming of Science Fiction/Fantasy, particularly Space Opera, ruined it? Our panelists will discuss how Space Opera has changed in recent years, both for good and bad.

  • panel Sun 1:00 - 1:50 PM, Crisis Escalation as Character Building, Patio Tent (1)
    Panelists: David Boop, Spencer G. Ellsworth, David Farland, J.A. Pitts

    She's up against the wall, everything's at stake, she's all alone, and her life is about to be ruined. Great job, you've got all the necessary points for plot escalation, now how do you pull double duty and use those scenes to build character as well?

  • Break Sun 1:50 - Sun 4:00
  • panel Sun 4:00 - 4:50 PM, Storytelling Across Media, Rocket Tent (1)
    Panelists: Aaron Douglas, David Farland, Peter Wacks (pjwacks)

    How is storytelling for movies, tv shows, and short works different? Does the actor's role change depending on the length of the work? What about the writer?

  • panel Sun 5:00 - 5:50 PM, Bringing a Runelord to Life, Yellowstone
    Panelists: Rob Carlos, David Farland

    Watch artist Rob Carlos bring on of Author GoH Dave Farland's Runelords characters to life (in an original sketch) under Dave's direction.

Note: Guest and pro biographical information may have been updated since MisCon 31.

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