sf conventions

Sometimes I’m just behind on everything.

Balticon was a whole new experience for me. I started attending Science Fiction Conventions in the early 1980s, when I was in graduate school, and I have always enjoyed them. Over the years I have attended panels, filk concerts, bardic circles, workshops, art shows, auctions, slide shows, GOH speeches, readings, open filks, and dead dogs. Key word: attended.

At Balticon that all changed. Mike and I (with help from Janina, Amber and Tree–thanks!) spent the weekend running a fan table for Darkovercon 34 [ 25 – 27 November 2011 in Timonium, MD ] , in a busy hallway right in the middle of things. We talked to a lot of nice folks, and met a ton of nice people.

I took a few breaks from the table–notably to attend several panels–where I sat on the other side of the table for the first time! I did two costuming panels: Faux Paws (Recreating Expensive Looks for Less) & Steampunk in Costuming; and was drafted onto a couple of literary panels: Dark Quest Books Presents and Steampunk. I also helped at the Dark Quest book launch on Sunday evening, and did my first reading.

Mike and I also managed to squeeze in the Masquerade, and a couple of concerts including a great FuMP show. And I proofread a magazine. We even got some sleep.

I’ve been working in the field for better than a dozen years, but now I really feel like a pro.

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I returned to Lunacon this year after a very long absence*. I was only able to attend for Saturday (I zipped to Reading, PA Saturday night and judged a cat show all day Sunday), but I tried to squeeze in as much con-going experience as I could into the day.

I went to a few nice panels, said a brief hello to Laura Anne (and got my books signed!), spent a little time at the Dark Quest table in the Dealer’s Room, had a very productive meeting with Neal about Sparkito Press (an Imprint of Dark Quest Books), talked with a few friends, and chatted with the folks at the fan tables about how to do a better job of promoting Darkovercon. I also went to the book launch for Buffalo Contingency and ended the day with a nice deli sandwich with the Dark Quest folks before heading off into the night. And I signed a contract for my first fiction sale, a short story going into the anthology In an Iron Cage http://www.darkquestbooks.com/store/product-info.php?pid91.html.

I wished I could have stayed for the whole weekend.

*The last Lunacon we were at, the GOH was Roger Zelazny. The Program Book tells me that was 1989. I need to get out more. (more…)

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