Since this is a frequently asked question, especially due to the large number of panels invited to the waiting list this year (owing to the huge number of submissions this year), we've written up a list of ten things to answer this question.
'How can improve my chances of getting my panel onto Fanime's schedule/getting a better time slot/ etc?'
Ten things you can do to improve your chances:
1. Have a totally awesome panel title that makes us want to schedule your panel, and others want to attend it.
2. Have a fantastic panel description that tells both us and others why people should attend your panel.
3. Give us a detailed overview of how exactly you plan to run your panel and what type of information you're going to cover rather than one or two sentences which only gives a vague idea.
4. Give a panel on a topic that isn't already being discussed by other panels.
5. Give a panel in a category that not many people submit panels for.
6. Give a panel that relates to the current year's Convention Theme. (2012 theme was sports - there were very few submissions relating to the theme.)
7. Submit early, so that when we're looking for a panel to fill that time slot you really want, your panel will be in the database we're looking at.
8. Be flexible with when you're willing to give your panel so that when we're looking for a panel to fill that particular time slot, your panel won't be dismissed because you don't seem willing to go at that time, and someone else is.
9. Repeat panels which have also received high attendance in past years are typically given priority (assuming they submitted early enough, etc.)
10. Be polite. Be respectful. Don't harass us.
"I've read this, but why didn't MY panel get onto the schedule?!"
We suggest you re-read this list. If you are unsure about the popularity of particular topics or categories (ie: how many submissions we get on those topics, or in those categories), feel free to ask us via e-mail or twitter, and we'll give you an idea.
Please note that while all of these things should improve your chances, none of them are a guarantee that your panel will be placed on our schedule. The more of them you adhere to though, the higher your chances are likely to be.