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Loncon 3/The 72nd Worldcon

I had a marvelous time at this year's Worldcon (which, the last I heard, was in the running to be the largest Worldcon in the event's 72-year-history with well over 10,500 attendees).

Some of the highlights of the con for me were the following.

- Meeting in person several of the StarShipSofa crew with whom I've worked for the last six plus years, including Tony C. Smith, Diane Severson Mori, Steve Bickle, and others, as well as many of our long-term listeners.

- Attending the 1939 Retro Hugo Awards Ceremony, which was presented like a 1939 radio broadcast, complete with a live band, ads, and breaks for newsflashes about approaching Martians. (Fortunately for us, the "con crud" killed the invaders before they penetrated the ExCel Centre where the ceremony was being held.) It was a loving extended tribute to Orson Welles' adaptation of The War of the Worlds, beautifully realized. My friend Diane Severson Mori, who was representing Amazing Stories editor Raymond Palmer (who was nominated for Best Editor), kindly invited me to be her "plus one," so I also got to see the other representatives at the pre-awards reception and enjoy the ceremony from choice seating. It was moving for me to see classic works I've loved and taught honored in this way.

- Officiating at the Prometheus Awards ceremony, where it was my privilege to present "Best Novel" awards to Cory Doctorow (for Homeland) and Ramez Naam (for Nexus), both of whom gave stirring speeches, and a "Special Award" to the representative of Leslie Fish (for her novella “Tower of Horses” and her related filk song, "The Horsetamer’s Daughter"), as well as to accept on behalf of Lois McMaster Bujold the "Hall of Fame" honor for her novel Falling Free.

- Giving my two talks, "Sherlock Holmes and Science Fiction" and "Millennials and Worlds Gone Wrong: These Aren't Your Grandparents' YA Dystopias." I'm grateful to A.J. Hall for her wonderful (and hilarious) introduction to my Holmes talk, and to everyone who attended - even those several dozen who were turned away after the doors were closed due to overcrowding. (What a turnout! I was amazed.) I'm also grateful to the many who came to my YA dystopias talk and stayed with me, contributing great comments and questions, even though the tech specialists were unable to get my PowerPoint up and running. (So it goes...)

- Participating in stimulating and thought-provoking panels. It was great fun to sit side-by-side and converse with some truly gifted authors, scholars, and journalists. I particularly enjoyed the "Young Adult SF on the Big Screen" panel, where we had just the right balance of agreement and disagreement to make for a vigorous and fruitful discussion. I also attended several excellent panels as an audience member. Two of the standout examples were "My Beautiful Dystopia" (with a stellar panel of authors including the always-awesome Peadar O'Guilin) and "Reluctant, or Just Not Interested?," a panel about reluctant readers, the education system, and publishing, which featured more terrific guests (including Gray Rinehart, whose appearances are always "must sees").

Here's my obligatory selfie with my Loncon 3 badge, taken just before the Retro-Hugo Awards ceremony, and a photo of the ExCeL Centre at the Docklands, where the con was held.

Here I am before the Retro-Hugo Awards.The ExCeL Centre in London in 2014

Click here for my photos from Loncon 3/Worldcon, including close-up pictures from the "50 Photos for 50 Years of Doctor Who," "A Brief History of Worldcon," and "The Destruction of London" special exhibits.

My next con appearance is in September at A Long-Expected Party. At this point I'm not sure about next year's Worldcon, but I know I will be attending MidAmeriCon II/Worldcon in 2016.


( 23 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 24th, 2014 05:17 pm (UTC)
It's great to hear that you had such a good time - and lovely to see you looking so happy :-)
Aug. 26th, 2014 08:24 pm (UTC)
Oh, thank you! :D
Aug. 27th, 2014 05:23 am (UTC)
As well as looking, frankly, gorgeous :-)
Aug. 28th, 2014 03:02 pm (UTC)
Awwww!!!!!!! *blushes* Thank you. You are the best. :)
Aug. 24th, 2014 05:52 pm (UTC)
ever had the problem where there were simply so many words/thoughts crowding your brain that not a one of them could escape coherently? Yah. That's me, about now. Blown away. Awed.

(and maybe a tad jealous. Nah. Actually, happy and proud for/of you!)

Aug. 26th, 2014 08:27 pm (UTC)
ever had the problem where there were simply so many words/thoughts crowding your brain that not a one of them could escape coherently?

I think that's my perpetual state of being, LOL!

But seriously, thank you for being so kind. *huge hugs* You're the best.
Aug. 26th, 2014 11:01 pm (UTC)
huge hugs back to you, Mz. Amy. If there can be two best, I'd like to share my besti-ness with you!
Aug. 24th, 2014 06:34 pm (UTC)
Glad you had a great time.

Good to see your pix. It's been too long.
Aug. 26th, 2014 08:41 pm (UTC)
Thanks! It was fantastic.

It really has been too long. I'd love for our paths to cross in person again soon.

BTW, I would've given my right arm for you to be on that "Commercializing Fans" panel. It was a very interesting mix of perspectives, but with a clear generational and attitudinal divide, I think (a sixtysomething fan, I was the fortysomething acafan, and then rest of the panelists I believe were twentysomething journalists), and that divide sort of dictated the scope of the discussion. That's not to say it wasn't a wide-ranging and interesting exchange, because it was... but I would've loved to hear what you'd say in response to some of the ideas thrown around.

Edited at 2014-08-26 08:54 pm (UTC)
Aug. 24th, 2014 07:29 pm (UTC)
Thanks so much for conducting the Prometheus Awards! I'm glad we had someone at LonCon who was totally reliable to step in for us.
Aug. 26th, 2014 08:46 pm (UTC)
Thank you! I was delighted I could do it.

Do you know if Naam's award was ever found? I promised we'd send it to him. He took the news very well; he borrowed Cory Doctorow's award and then noted that in an alternate universe he was Cory Doctorow, so that award was fitting.

I still think it was wise not to carry the award overseas ourselves. Did you see Cory's photo of what the TSA did to his daughter's carry-along My Little Pony playset? What a nightmare.

Edited at 2014-08-26 09:20 pm (UTC)
Aug. 24th, 2014 09:20 pm (UTC)
Thanks for your kind words :) Glad you enjoyed those panels!
Aug. 26th, 2014 08:47 pm (UTC)
No brag, just fact! :) The panels were a treat.

I hope you've patted yourself on the back for a programming track well done!
Aug. 24th, 2014 09:34 pm (UTC)
Can't wait to see you in Kentucky!
Aug. 26th, 2014 08:51 pm (UTC)
Oh my goodness, I can't wait!!!

By the way, do you have suggestions on what I should wear for my talks? I do have something hobbit-y to wear at least one night, maybe more, but I don't have enough "thematic wear" to cover every day. Do you recall what have other speakers have worn? I'd be grateful for any recommendations. Thanks!

It will be so lovely to see you two again!

Are Middle-earth folk allowed to sing along to blogs owned by would-be members of the Evil League of Evil?
Aug. 26th, 2014 10:31 am (UTC)
It was such a privilege to finally meet you and to spend some time with you. You were so helpful and fun preparing for the Retro Ceremony and I so enjoyed our coffee and lunch breaks (we did have lunch together didn't we? It's a blur...). I totally regret not getting into your Sherlock Holmes talk, I wanted to see it live. Oh well, I'll have to content myself with the Sofanauts version...

See you next time!
Aug. 28th, 2014 03:07 pm (UTC)
Oh, it was such a joy to get to spend time with you! I had a blast at the Retro Ceremony (and getting ready for it!) and our coffee and lunch breaks (yes, I do believe we did both!), and I'm thrilled that I got to read your amazing work. And you were so kind, even waiting in line for my coffee when you already had yours! I'm so happy that it worked out that we were (finally!) in the same place.

I can't wait for next time. We'll have so much fun! :D
Aug. 28th, 2014 12:01 pm (UTC)
Here's a comic posted by Girl Genius creators Phil and Kaja Foglio on their return from London.

Aug. 28th, 2014 03:03 pm (UTC)
(Deleted comment)
Sep. 7th, 2014 01:02 pm (UTC)
Re: okay, it took me a really long time to come up with this ...
LOL! ::blushes:: I could only *wish* to be cool enough to make her blog when she's old enough to be posting. ;)

Oct. 17th, 2014 09:59 pm (UTC)
I forgot to post, but we briefly shook hands after your Holmes talk and it was great to have a chance to say hi. You'll have to come back to London and see the big Gothic exhibition at the British Library: http://www.bl.uk/whatson/exhibitions/gothic/index.html
Oct. 22nd, 2014 08:38 pm (UTC)
Oh wow - that's brilliant! Are you the one who told me that I sent Christmas cards to you each year? It's wonderful to have met you in person. I'm only sorry it was for so brief a time. Thanks very much for turning out for my talk!

The Gothic exhibition looks fantastic. *swoons* Will you go?
Oct. 23rd, 2014 08:22 pm (UTC)
That was me. We did go to the Gothic exhibition and it was fantastic.
( 23 comments — Leave a comment )

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