Friendly Neighborhood Con

Though I’ve lived nearby for years, this year was the first time I went to Vericon. The sun was out! I didn’t want to sit down and edit! Friend was there! So what if I hadn’t read anything by most of the authors there? I was nearly done with Seth Dickinson’s novel! Good enough.

That ends up not mattering much, because authors are delightful, funny, excited people, and everyone is very nice.

I tried to come up with accolades for everyone on the panels I saw, but I’m not that prolific. Instead, the two notables:

Author who made me laugh the hardest: Seth Dickinson (lord, I’ll never think of vegetable oil the same way again. Or writer’s block.)

Author whose history class I most want to take: Ada Palmer (she made me deeply interested in medieval scholars debating the degree of divine inspiration involved in texts! That’s a trick.)

Next year I’ll have to go for a full day, gosh.

#readercon

Last weekend I went to ReaderCon for the first time. Somehow, it’s happened for the past 24 years without me having any idea. This is a travesty that I’m pleased to have corrected, because I loved it. (So, thanks Gillian!)

I could go on for 4,000 words about it and detail every moment that I remember, but no one wants that, least of all me. And let’s be real: There is one thing that happened that was, for me, the highlight of the entire weekend:

I got to sign something I wrote.

I walked up to the Crossed Genres table and pointed at the latest print issue. “I’m in that one!”

“Congrats! Want to sign it?”

I knew I should have been practicing my signature all these years.

Signed copy of my story in Crossed Genres Magazine
The first signature of at least a few, I hope.

So that was a delightful moment, and for that I thank Bart Leib, one of the publishers at Crossed Genres, who published my story back in January. You can read “The Gaps in Translation” here.

Other highlights of Readercon 2014:

  • Coffee in the con suite. Bless the con suite.
  • Admiring the poise and style of Sofia Samatar, and getting A Stranger in Olondria signed.
  • All the readings I got to go to! Sofia Samatar, Daniel Jose Older, Max Gladstone, seven contributors to Long Hidden… such riches. I’m spoiled.
  • Kaffeeklatsch! It’s an absolute must. I missed out on Max Gladstone and Lev Grossman (as I expected to happen) but got my name down for Daniel Handler (with Kit Reed and Kate Maruyama)!
  • Daniel Handler said many great things, but one in particular that’s going to stick with me: Writing is like going to work. I mean, I’ve been doing this drive for fifteen years. Shouldn’t the commute be shorter by now? But no, writing doesn’t necessarily get faster over time.
  • I’m nothing if not predictable. On Sunday I went to an Unreliable Narrators panel, and Unlikely Cartography. Yes, please, talk to me about lying narrators (and the lies of a map, even!)
  • I was absolutely thrilled with the amount of discussion of diversity throughout the weekend.
  • Also thrilling: The number of panels that had a “token” man, or no men at all. It can happen!

In conclusion, I’m still tired. And have so many books to read!