April 11, 2004

   Con Report - Minicon 39

*yawn* Well I'm back from a weekend at Minicon - a science fiction convention in Minneapolis. Woohoo. Lot's of good panels, good friends and even a few "moments" with published authors (and their kids).

Warning - Long post ahead

Sweetie and I shared a room at the hotel with Careswen and Michael. We also ran into Andy , Melinda and a few other friends. We met new people, remet other people, and generally had a good time.

Among the people we met were Adam Stemple of the Tim Malloys. As it turns out, he's not just a good musician and song writer, he's also a Science Fiction fan and writer. Of course that runs in his family - his mother is Jane Yolen, a well known story teller and author of many many fantasy books, and his sister Heidi Stemple is also an author of several young adult books.

We also met Lyda Morehouse - a SF author who tends toward Cyber punk. I haven't read much of her stuff, but I want to. We went to her reading for her latest book - Apocalypse Array. Chapter two at least was highly amuzing and I plan to read the rest of the series just as soon as I can find time, and the books. On sunday we ran into her again and she introduced us to her son, a cutie at 18 months. He was happily eating his mother's badge and trying to walk, even though he hadn't quite figured out that whole balance thing yet.

Sweetie was also on his first panel - Computers and Magic. It was a very interesting discussion - after they convinced the heckler to sit down, shut up and listen to what other people had to say. I find it odd that someone would come to a panel about computers and magic and insist that magic doesn't exist. Whether it does in this world or not is a bit of a moot point at a fantasy convention. Other than that though, they talked about all the different ways that computers can be seen to influence or be influenced by magic (including a slightly tong in cheek comment about imagining how much energy a computer could raise chanting).

Among the other panels I went to were
- "Moving your writing to the next level" with much obvious but good to be repeated advice: sit down and write, edit your work, seek critism of your peers, learn to accept critism without getting your feelings hurt, finish it, send it out. "
- "Getting started in writing" with much of the same advice
- "How to talk to the Pros without coming of as a drooling fanboy or stalker." with many funny stories of people who did it wrong and some good advice: Know why you want to talk to them and plan accordingly, respect their privacy, act professionally, don't shove your manuscript under a stall door in the bathroom to an editor you want to impress (that won't impress them).
- "The Family Business." Adam and Hiedi Stemple talk about writing in their family. This is where Sweetie and I have picked up our new catch phrase: Butt In Chair - meaning sit down and write (or whatever) you don't get something done by talking about it or thinking about it, you get it done by doing it.
- "Knights of the Dinner Table" acting out various stories from the comic of the same name. Volunteers took on the various roles and gave a histerical rendering of an out of control gaming group - every DM fears players like those.
- And others, but they've blurred in my mind.

Now I just need to put all this info together into a coherent form so that I can apply the advice that works for me, keep handy the info that I'll need when I'm writing, and look forward to ConVergence.

Posted by Becca at April 11, 2004 11:15 PM

Yea for CON stories. Sounds like it was definetly worth the time. I know you have tons of things between work, school and ASL going on. How is the writing going?

Posted by: Williamofoccam at April 12, 2004 07:13 PM