So sitting here Monday morning and Tuesday afternoon (Yes I got distracted) after five days of my first World Con, I’m trying to piece all of my thoughts together. (Coffee is making this easier.)
First of all, I must thank my writing boss, Jennifer Brozek for inviting me to be her minion for the weekend. Otherwise, I doubt I would have gone for more than a day. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
Now a lot of people go for different reasons. I went to work. Not the type of working that involves talking to publishers about work or being on panels. Instead, I was responsible for making sure my writing boss got to her meetings and panels, carried all of the necessary things such as promotional stuff and made notes for further discussion as necessary. Short version I was a handler this weekend.
Being a handler is an interesting job at a convention, but I’ll save thoughts on that for some other time.
I did have a great time. I met lots of people, a few I had met before and many others I had simply followed on social media for a while. And it was really exciting to meet one of my most favorite authors, Mercedes Lackey and her husband Larry Dixon. Yes, I did a teeny fangirl squee when I knew they were at the convention and a purely mental one the next day when Larry passed me by and said hi and asked if I were having a good time. (I still get a goofy smile on my face from that.) I also have some signed bookplates and a special signed decal from the both of them. (double squee!)
While there, I met many of the WorldFire Press crew, Apex Book Company, and Angry Robot. I spoke with some self-pub and indie pub authors. I looked at some great art (even though we didn’t make it to the art show.) There were so many people I only got to meet a few that I know were there.
We didn’t get involved in any of the controversies that arose this weekend. We did hear second-hand accounts of what Dave Truesdale did (you can get a great rundown of that over on Jim Hines’ blog.) There were a few other things that made other people uncomfortable or angry, and even though I wasn’t involved or even in those areas where these were happening, I am very sorry they happened.
However, I was impressed with the many signs that the MidAmerica Con II staff posted all over the area. They were gentle reminders that harassment was not okay, that you should not touch the cosplayers without consent, and that there were gender neutral bathrooms available. In the back of the convention center was a quiet room, where someone could go for a few minutes of peace and a separate room for nursing mothers. Those I felt were really nice touches.
The convention was inclusive of all sorts of fans. There were cosplayers, gamers, fans and writers alongside editors, podcasters and artists. It wasn’t huge, just a nice friendly atmosphere.
Two things I really need to do more. 1-take photos! The only one I took was the GoT Throne. 2-be a little more organized (nothing major.)
I look forward to attending my next convention and making plans for the 2018 WorldCon in San Jose!