What follows is a brief rundown of the fannish aspects of my World Con experience, with more personal commentary and thoughts to follow in a separate post.
I didn’t go to any of the signings for two reasons. 1) I didn’t have the space to cart all the books by the authors I’ve loved to the Convention to get them signed. 2) Going to the signings without my already purchased books would then mean purchasing new copies on site and that wouldn’t have left room for the new books I planned on buying. Yet I still felt very dirty/bad/wrong about not going to the signings. Like I was un-fannish, or something.
Anywho, here’s who I squealed for:
Neil Gaiman was just as delightful as he has been during his other appearances — cute, rumpled and insightful. Saw him from afar at the New Media panel with Cory Doctorow, whom I also got to see at the Cecil Street Irregulars panel. Very informative, that one.
Nancy Kress was another highlight and I got to pick up one of her latest books, Dogs. Went to several of her panels during the course of World Con and she is just as funny and thoughtful as her work. I actually had a moment when my con-mate and I were heading back to the hotel, where we passed Nancy Kress and her husband heading out. As soon as we passed, I started babbling over and over to Pauline, “ThatWasNancyKressOMGThatWasNancyKress!”
Caught one panel with Larry Niven near the end. His books, specifically The Integral Trees and Ringworld, were ones that shaped my interior landscape in my formative reading years. I remember pouring over the maps and calculations in the beginning of those books, loving them as much as I loved the work.
In a “late to the party” moment, I also managed to catch Ellen Kusher and her wife Delia Sherman at several excellent panels. Sherman is so passionate about her work and Kusher is downright hilarious and down-to-earth. I’ve only just come across Kusher through her book Privilege of the Sword and I must find more.
I also got to meet, and have breakfast with, Elizabeth Bear! I can’t thank Pauline enough for letting me tag along. We skipped the morning panels and hung out by the park near the Palais with its fountain and slightly ominous water effects. She was hilarious. For her reading, she read a snippet of her forthcoming book, the sequel to All The Windwracked Stars. Go! Read Bear! Follow her on Twitter!
And George R. R. Martin, of course. On my first day, when wandering through the dealer’s room, I was happily ambling along, checking out the wares, and then realized I had just walked past him. Fangirl twittering commenced shortly thereafter. Caught several of his panels and, again, just like Kress, funny and thoughtful. One of my all-time favorite writers. His thoughts on writers as either Architects verses Gardeners have given me much to ponder.
If there was one downside at all to World Con, it would be that it’s just increased my to-read authors list by many orders of magnitude. Always better too many than too few, right?