Like most people who hear the term "Midsummer" I associate the word with Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, one of my fave plays. The story elicited thoughts and memories of the whimsical, fae and fantasy mixed with love, pranks and romantic mixups. Imagine my surprise when I found out there was a conference for Midsummer Nights' Science!
Fantasy and sci-fi have been lumped together for the past few years under the umbrella of speculative fiction and imagination. Science is another animal altogether.
The Midsummer Nights' Science Conference is sponsored by the Broad Institute and begins on July 11th continuing to August 1st. It appears annually during midsummer and explores key advances in genomic research (the biology and genetics study of all organisms). The event is free to the general public each summer and is held at 7 Cambridge Center, in Kendall Square in Cambridge just in case we have any folks out there interested in dropping by. The conference request registering ahead of time for comfy seating.
The official website lists a bevy of topics to be covered regarding genomes across many organisms. I couldn't help but think about a connection here. Shakespeare's play primarily features topics of love and the unpredictable nature of humans as the fae look on (and often interfere). I'm often interested in the 'science of love' where professionals in the field talk about the chemicals and goings on in the human body as we fall in love and connect with one another. One of the lecture series features "Dissecting the brain, one gene at a time" which covers different cell types (including neurons) in the brain and I would have loved to see a specific lecture on how the brain reacts in a romantic situation. Especially in dealing with love at first sight.
One of the books I read about this topic was Why We Love: The Nature and Chemistry of Romantic Love by Helen Fisher and I will definitely be returning to this book on closer inspection for my upcoming novella 'Intergalactic'. The novella features a newly created cyborg who, at the beginning of the story, will become aware of his existence and surroundings. Since the story will feature a romance with a reluctant female soldier, he will also be learning about compassion, empathy, passion and ultimately love. So it would help to learn more about how the brain functions in a romantic situation as well as functioning on a minute basis of the day to day. Not to mention fight scenes. ;-)
Here is the cover for my upcoming romantic sci-fi novella:
Don't forget to check out the other SFR author blogs in our blog hop and enter to win one of two grand prizes!
1st Prize - a Kindle Touch or Nook Touch
2nd Prize -a library of science fiction romance titles from over 20 authors (these will be mostly ebooks with one print anthology), and an Anabanana Gift Card.
All you need to do to enter is pop along to the blogs listed below and comment on as many as you want (only ONE comment per site will count as an entry). Each time you comment at a stop, you'll earn one entry into the grand prize - so the more sites you visit, the greater your chances of winning. The winners will be drawn at random on the 24th June and announced on this site. The list of participating authors can be found below this post. Spread the news!
To learn more about the Midsummer Nights' Science 2012 conference, check out:
I'll leave you with a little theme music that partly inspired 'Intergalactic'. Care of the awesome duo Boom Boom Satellites!
See you around the blogosphere!;-)