Illogicon (#SFWApro)

IMG_0634So last Friday, exhausted from Thursday night, I got up, said goodbye to TYG and grabbed a taxi to LaGuardia. It went smoothly: I arrived with plenty of time, got through security fast, the only drawback was that there wasn’t a Starbucks or equivalent place to get tea once I reached Terminal C (it felt very much like the poor-relation terminal). TYG had a much rougher time coming home Sunday.

After unpacking followed by a small nap I made it to Illogicon in time to catch my writer’s group buddy Ada Milenkovic Brown (website here) read from some of her stories. Then I wandered around, explored the dealer’s room, ran into more of my friends and eventually sat on two panels. One was on writing new Alice in Wonderland and Oz stories; fortunately my cospeaker, Ron Baxley Jr. (who’s authored several such stories) had a complete presentation going so I didn’t have to strain my voice much. My only significant contribution was reminding the audience that anyone who imagines “Dark Oz” or “Dark Wonderland” will wow readers because it’s such an original concept is wrong (which is not to say Dark is the wrong choice, just that it’s been done).

Then I moderated the Good Love/Bad Love panel, tackling a topic I’ve blogged about here several times. I was a really bad moderator last year, but I’ve learned, and I got several compliments on running the panel and my responses to the topic.

Saturday I had two more panels: one on writing believable characters, one on “Bad Writing Advice.” I had fun with both, but can’t really offer any insights—actively participating makes it hard to glean new thoughts. I also did a reading, one of my older stories, “Jack Be Nimble” (available in Philosophy and Fairytales). I headed home in the evening and spent Sunday enjoying my isolation until TYG came home and we picked up the pups

The con was thoroughly enjoyable. In addition to the panels there was hanging out with my friends here, too-brief encounters with authors Terri Smiles and Gail Z. Martin, and munching in the con hospitality suite (seen above). The veggie options, such as a delicious split pea soup, were actually an improvement compared to our New York dining. I also really enjoyed the dealer’s room: one “vintage” table has the kind of old obscure 1960s paperbacks by authors I’ve never heard of that I’m intrigued to pick up (instead I went with an Ace Double—I couldn’t afford more than that just then).

100_8546And of course I checked out the cosplay.

Thanks to everyone who worked on it, and for inviting me to participate again.

And my voice survived all the talking, though chatting normally with TYG this week is beginning to strain it. Run silent, run deep …

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