Wednesday, November 03, 2010

World Fantasy Convention 2010--Day Two

Gini and I stayed up talking all night last night.  Not too smart, considering the wake up call was set for 8 am. After breakfast, while Gini was busy, I did a lot of people watching and this is what I've got.

Today, I was accosted with the worst pick up line EVER.  While I was smoking outside, this fellow came up to me and said, "I've only ever seen you with a girl.  Are you a lesbian?"

Seriously?  I mean, seriously, dude, does that kind of line ever work?  Somehow I don't think so.  So now, I've got the line of the convention and I'm going to repeat it until people's ears bleed.  Because, you know, it wasn't enough that this moron insulted lesbians everywhere by assuming a pair of straight chicks hanging out at a convention were lesbians simply because they were not with this particular troll-like speciman of humanity.  No clue who said dude was.  All I need to know is this: what a loser.

The smoking area has been renamed 'the pariah portico.' I take total credit for that name, by the way.  One thing I've definitely learned--make a point of hanging out on the smoker's patio at some point during every convention.  You'll run into some fascinating and important people.

I have a feeling that Lewis Carroll's rabbit hole actually runs smack dab through the center of the Columbus Hyatt Regency.  I keep wondering if I've fallen into Wonderland or if I've just accidentally wandered into asshole. It's easy to determine what category these writers fall into.  Those who I would gush over meeting?  They're polite and always happy to talk to another author or a fan.  Those who I've never heard of?  They're the ones sitting around the bar area with their noses in the air, pattering away on their laptops hoping someone will either recognize them or ask what they're writing.  If nothing else, it's a huge lesson in what NOT to do at a convention.

Here's another.  If someone expresses interest in your project, that isn't an invitation to whip out the I-pad and show them all your research.  Trust me.  It makes people cringe.

I've been watching an extraordinary agent at work throughout this convention and I have to say--I've learned more from watching her for a couple of days than I have from all my research over the past few years.  I've been learning the language of the sale.

And yes, Modesitt's vest was even more colorful and elaborate than the day before.  We said hello to him again today, and he was just as polite as before. I think he's starting to recognize us, though.

The mass signing tonight was precisely that: a MASSIVE signing.  The Regency ballroom was very hot and stuffy.  I spent that three hour block holding down real estate in the bar.  (What? I was thirsty, and besides--how was I going to pick which author's books to get signed?  Besides Gini, of course.)  After that, we went to a couple of small press parties.  We hung out for a while with the folks from EDGE--all very nice and lots of fun--and then went on to the Chi-Zine party, where I got to get a good look at the really outstanding books they're putting out as well as pulling out bottles of beer from the tub.  Pretty darn cool.

Today I met both Elizabeth Bear and Anne Bishop.  Very nice, interesting ladies both. Gini ran into a fan in the elevator, which was totally cool, and believe it or not, we managed to drag our exhausted butts off to bed by the reasonable hour of 1:30.

World Fantasy Convention 2010--Official Day One

---Okay, so Gini invited me to stay with her in her hotel room for a couple of nights of the convention.  I thought that would be a great idea--it would let me stay longer and get out into the action earlier (which seemed like a good idea at the time) and work out a whole mess of business.  So yeah. Good idea, right?

Right. It was, as a matter of fact. I'm known for some pretty darn clever ideas, but that Gini Koch.  Genius. Sheer genius.

We saw LE Modesitt again.  I think I must be destined to run into him and his lovely vests.  Interesting thing about Modesitt--he's always very polite but he's always also just a little wild-eyed if you approach him.  I'm thinking some half-insane fan has approached him at some point in his past, the poor man.  Very charming overall, though, and there's always that moment of "Oh my gosh--that's LE Modesitt!"

My fangster pal Beth Bernobich's Passion Play (just debuted from Tor) is visible everywhere.  Interestingly enough, right after I wrote that in my journal, Tom Doherty (as in Mr. Tor) walked by and I nearly fell through the floor.

Today is the first official day of the convention, and while there were lots of people in the hotel last night, tonight is absolutely packed with a whole slew of folks that look like speculative fiction writers, editors and fans.  It's kind of like this:  I've been to romance conventions, and there really isn't any way to look around and say, "Oh yeah--romance people."  But sci fi or fantasy?  You'd better believe it.  Overall, it's a very comfortable place to be, and thank God it's more than acceptable to do jeans and tennis shoes.  Gini is introducing to me to scads of people and I'm ashamed to admit I have no clue who ninety percent of them are.

Maybe I should take some time off from writing and do a little reading in my field?  Nah.

Perhaps the most interesting part of the convention so far has been listening to some old school gossip about some of the greats in the field back in the day.  I spent quite a bit of time with my mouth hanging open, looking like a starving Venus fly trap, while I assimilated information that under no circumstance would I ever be able to write about in this blog.  So forgive me for that "I know something you don't know!" moment.  I just couldn't help it.

But I do know something you don't know.  Just so you know.

The company was so interesting that we completely missed the opening ceremonies, but I'm thinking we didn't need to know that the convention was now officially open.  The madness in the bar made that obvious enough.