Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Convention Comments ReaderCon

Where do I start? What an incredible experience our first "big" convention was! And I'm told that this is really a minor one compared to WorldCon. Scary thought, considering I barely survived this one due to lack of sleep, food, and caffeine.

Well, first off, I am never driving to Ft. Lauderdale to fly to New York, to drive to Boston ever again. I'll spring for the extra airfare to get closer on either end, thank you very much. We started this thing tired. Big mistake.

First day was pretty cool. I got to hear Kay Kenyon read from her latest book. She's a good reader and does the character voices well, but since I was unfamiliar with the book, I found it hard to follow. She graciously signed my copy of Seeds of Time for me. Very nice lady.

Also met Ellen Kushner. I've never read her work, but she was all personality and a good presenter. She spoke about sequels, among other things, and since I'm writing a series, I found that interesting.

Then, it was back to our hotel to sleep. We couldn't get in to the convention hotel for the first night, but I didn't really mind. Our hotel, a Doubletree, was actually nicer and cheaper than the convention Marriott.

Second day, got to hear a talk by Elizabeth Bear on her book Dust. I was in the middle of it at the time, so she agreed not to discuss any spoilers. I've finished it now, and I'll discuss that in a different blog post. Later, I got to sit down with Ms. Bear in a round table discussion. That was very cool, to be that close to an author I admire so greatly. She was extremely nice and very entertaining. I've read six of her books so far. My favorites are still the Jenny Casey trilogy. Joe has read a pair of her short stories and enjoyed them. She signed two books for me.

We also sat down with Ellen Datlow, a prestigious editor of anthologies with whom the hubby has been conversing by blog posts. She, also, was nice, and helpful, giving us tips on how we should set up our business cards and telling us we should approach publishing house editors at conventions, even if we do not have agents.

We were staying in the Marriott this time, so we just crawled up to bed at a reasonable hour. One thing that surprised me was the lack of parties going on in rooms or in the con suite. Guess they're saving them up for WorldCon.

Third day was definitely the most surreal. This was Doyle and MacDonald day. They are a married writing team that wrote the Mageworlds series. Both the hubby and I are fans and have read all seven books of the Mageworlds, so we could both fully appreciate their presentations on their own works. Prior to the convention, I sent them a fan email complimenting their work and when I got to meet them, they told me they had received it. We sat down for a round table discussion, but didn't really get to discuss anything because the rest of the table was filled with friends of theirs. However, later we ran into them in the bar and they invited us back to their hotel room to ask any writing questions we wanted to! It took me quite awhile to grasp that I was sitting on their floor, eating their homemade cookies, and listening to James MacDonald explain where the character of Beka (one of my all-time favorite female heroines) came from. How cool is that?!

Also, earlier that same day, we got to sit down with Mr. Hartwell, senior editor at Tor publishing. Afterwards, he gave me his business card and gave me permission to email him regarding submitting my work. Whew, what a day!

Sunday, last day of the con, we had brunch with Doyle and MacDonald. Then we went to their reading and they even included a selection from my favorite of their works, Price of the Stars, just for me and Joe! They signed two of my copies of their books for me.

I will write up the rest of the trip experience in a different post. But ReaderCon was definitely worth one all on its own.

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