ConQuesT Aftermath: My Notes from Kansas City’s Science Fiction Convention

High points:

The Charity Auction had the coolest thing I’ve seen in a while: a fanzine/comic book made by Buddy Saunders featuring the second story George R.R. Martin ever published!  I couldn’t swing the  $200+ price, but it’s nice to know the proceeds went to AboutSF.

Hearing Sean Demory read his short story “The Ballad of the Wayfaring Stranger and the Dead Man’s Whore.”  Clearly, this guy knows his Americana music and uses that knowledge to produce weird, resonant fiction.

Meeting Mackenzie and Meagan, the two new AboutSF chairs.  Their plans for an online “summer reading group” of gender-themed SF is light-years better than anything I came up with when I had that job.  (Links coming soon)

The Hadley Rille Books reading, including a book release party for Mark Nelson and readings by a batch of other great writers including M.C. Chambers, Terri-Lynne DeFino, Karin Rita Gastreich, Chris Gerrib, Chris McKitterick, and Lawrence Schoen.  I read exactly 1-and- ½ pages of my story “Have You Seen Lucky?” during the super-fast reading roundtable.

Attending Roomcon!  James Hollaman’s annual convention-in-a-suite with a typically great (five-hour-long!) live music set by Bland Lemon Denton & Caroline Spector. So many people leave that room in some form of blurry bliss.  Jimmy, you’re doing the Lord’s work, man!

Talking about Anglophilia among young SF fans with Beth Welch.  Oh, to be fourteen and obsessed with Douglas Adams, Joe Jackson, Peter Davidson’s Doctor, Monty Python and Slade again.

Getting a picture with Redd, whose weather-beaten red cat costume was all kinds of awesome.

I’m Sorry:

Apologies to Brad Denton for leaving his reading early.  I had to get to Hadley Rille’s Noon panel; I’ll learn the end of the story when Rayguns Over Texas hits stores.

Apologies to the Steampunk: A Beginner’s Guide panel (Jean Stuntz, Susan Leabhardt & Holly Messinger) for leaving early.  Y’all had a great crowd and good information, but I never got to say hello.  McKitterick’s fiction reading was at the :30 minute mark that hour, but I wanted to see at least half of your panel!

Low Points:

Lack of sleep. Lack of space in room with 5+ people. Lack of time to really talk to everyone I wanted to see (i.e., the usual).

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