Saturday, October 12, 2013

GenreCon Part 2: Saturday

Where we last left off, I was about to embark on a very busy afternoon at GenreCon. Two PM had me on the panel 50 Years of Doctor Who, followed by my reading, followed by The Basics of Writing Genre, followed by my signing. At that point I'd have an hour long break, and then I'd do Star Trek 2: The Wrath of Benedict Cumberbatch at seven. Whew!

The panels were well-attended. My reading and book signing were not. Nevertheless, I had an enjoyable time. And I sold a few books! One I sold for a dollar to my new friend Tristin; he'd been to all my panels and my reading that afternoon and the previous evening, so he totally deserved it.

For the Doctor Who panel, I sat between two panelists (Paul Neale & Dalek Dreadnaught) who had insider knowledge of the upcoming 50th Year Anniversary special. It was very tempting to ask for spoilers, let me tell you! We discussed the highs and lows of the last fifty years of the show, and our hopes for the upcoming adventures of the 12th Doctor.

Sarah Water Raven joined me for my reading, and brought a bunch of kick-ass flyers for my upcoming novel The Five Demons You Meet In Hell with her. She also joined me at my table in the dealer's room for my signing, and we both sold a couple of books. These things are more fun when shared with a friend!

The Basics of Writing Genre was well-attended, at least at first. Bestselling novelist Kelley Armstrong was scheduled to be on the panel, but she'd received the wrong information and thought the panel was on Sunday! When it was clear she wasn't coming, a few of her fans got up and left. The room was still 3/4ths full, however, and aspiring novelist Ed Mochrie and I rose to the occasion. It was Ed's first panel ever, too. Like, ever! Gosh, I remember what that was like, way back in the spring of 2006's Ad Astra. Ed brought a lot to the table, and we had a very good discussion with our audience.

Star Trek 2: The Wrath of Benedict Cumberbatch wouldn't have kept my wife Violet entertained for very long; most of the discussion was about the movie Star Trek Into Darkness, and not Benedict himself. Corrina McGill, Cory Albrecht and I talked about the film's strengths and flaws, of which there were many. A good friend of mine was kind enough to sit down with me a week or two back and list those flaws in alphabetical order, so I had plenty of material to draw upon. The majority of the audience (and panelists) seemed to have loved the film as much as I did, however, so a lot of that material was glossed over.

After the Star Trek panel, I headed to the hotel's restaurant with friends for dinner. The place was expensive but convenient, and the staff was just wonderful. One of the servers wore a suit identical to that of the 10th Doctor (by sheer coincidence!), and another one bought a copy of Section K.

The evening was very interesting; there was a dance, an epic card game, and room parties. And did I mention the genre-themed drinks? I had a TARDIS, vodka and some kind of blue juice that was quite yummy. Corrine invited me to the Cards Against Humanity game, and I volunteered to be a judge. The object of the game was to answer questions as rudely, inappropriately, or just plain horribly as possible using a selection of cards inscribed with various things. Hmm, I'm not explaining that very well... let me put it like this: in your selection of cards, you might have one that says kitten and another that says sandwich spread, and you might use them together if you got a fill-in-the-blank question like "A ______ makes a very good _______." Or you might use a card that says an adorable two-month-old baby with the question "What did you eat for breakfast?" Get the picture? And will you ever be able to get that picture out of your head? Sorry about that. Anyway, I took to the game like a butcher knife to a puppy's face - I just sank right in! Ooh, whoops. Did it again! I'm so evil.

And then, the fire alarm went off. Every hotel guest was evacuated to the parking lot, including all convention attendees and one very angry wedding party! They put forward their theories as to who was responsible for disrupting their happy nuptials, and came to two possible conclusions: the alarm had been triggered either by "some faggit" or "one of them cosplayers." Tempers ran hot, even though the temperature outside was very cold. I wished for my jacket, but I was one of the lucky ones - more than a few cosplayers were clad in little more than decorative underwear! The hotel staff moved us four times around the parking lot while the firefighters did their jobs, and we were finally allowed back in when the cause of the fire had been discovered a half-hour later. Turns out someone from the wedding party had lit a cigarette inside the hotel and set off the smoke detectors. Naturally, no apology was offered.

I missed my midnight panel on fanfiction due to the 'fire', so my programming responsibilities were finished for that day. I might have packed it in and gone to bed, but it turned out my night was just beginning...

GenreCon Part 3: Sunday Coming Soon!

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