Worldcon is always a tossup for me. It almost always falls on the same weekend as Dragoncon. Both are major events, attended by the biggest names in the business, along with hordes of raving fans (AKA my type of crowd). I went to the 2012 Worldcon, the year before, I was scheduled to be at Dragoncon, but I would up getting activated for a PAO gig at Cape May, which wound up as Hurricane Duty once Irene rolled in. I hemmed and hawed over which to attend this year, and in the end it was the kerfuffle surrounding the involvement of Edward Kramer that helped me decide. It would be Worldcon in 2013.
I booked my flight and hotel, put in my picks for programming, and waited to hear about my schedule. And waited. And waited. A few weeks before the convention, it became apparent that I wasn’t going to be booked on any programming and I began to hear from other writers who were committed to going who had been left out in the cold as well.
I was bemoaning my panelless fate to Steve Drew (of Reddit Fantasy fame) and Justin Landin (who reviews and blogs over at Staffer’s Musings). “Those big jerkfaces,” I whined manfully, “I bet I could have my own party, and it would be bigger and better than any stupid panel they would do!” (at this point, I stuck out my lower lip).
And this is the thing with Steve and Justin. You don’t want to make statements like that around them unless you truly mean it. Because if there’s one thing those guys are, it’s organized. And motivated. And persistent. Okay, fine. That’s more than one thing. It’s my blog. Sue me.
By the time the dust had settled, we’d found a bar right near the hotel, set up a charity raffle, and gotten pretty much every author going to agree to come to the party. Here’s the list so far (and these are just those who are confirmed to be coming, more may stop by) in no particular order:
Bradley P. Beaulieu
Devi Pillai (editor Orbit)
Robert Jackson Bennett
Robin Hobb / Megan Lindholm
Eddie Schneider (Jabberwocky Literary Agency)
Joshua Bilmes (Jabberwocky Literary Agency)
Mary Robinette Kowal
John Horner Jacobs
And that’s not all. We’re going to each be signing a medieval great helm, then raffling it off for charity, as well as free signed copies of our novels and other great prizes. And which charity, you ask? As if you had to: Patrick Rothfuss’ WorldBuilders, of course!
Here’s the thing. Major cons like Worldcon are full of exclusive, closed-door parties thrown by SFWA, or publishers, or industry insiders. But the truth is that all of us who make a living in this business came to our professions as fans. I think I speak for most SF/F writers when I say that we’re fans first. So, this party is the opposite of exclusive. It’s partly a pity party for those of us who didn’t get on panels. But it’s also partly a party for everyone to raise a glass and say hi to their favorite author without having to wait on a line after a panel or ambush them at the hotel bar. All of us will be in one place, drinking, hanging. You know, like we do. We’ll even be setting up a laptop and a Google Hangout to conference in folks who can’t make it.
The party’s on Saturday night, August 31st, kicking off at 7PM and going until the bar throws us out. It’s at Ernie’s Bar at 320 Bonham in San Antonio. Look, anyone who knows me knows that the vast majority of my life is spent alone in a closet sized Brooklyn apartment hunched over a laptop. It’s a rare thing for me to get out and party, and this is going to have to last me for an entire year. I fully plan to tear it up, stand on a stool, and deliver an impassioned speech that I won’t remember the next day.
And if I’m going to make a fool of myself, I’m going to do it surrounded by a crowd of my people. My tribe. My own.
See you Saturday. Wear your drinking pants.
Update: Justin’s got the official event flier up here.
Updated Update: They actually did put me on a panel. I’m still pouting and throwing a pity party because … well, I guess I’m committed at this point, eh? Panel details below:
Sunday 11:00 — 12:00
Should SF Consider the Aspects of the Future rather than Predicting the Future?
Myke Cole (M), Tobias Buckell, Trina Marie Phillips, Charles E. Gannon, Catherynne M. Valente.