Monday, August 10, 2009

Winging to WorldCon

I plan to run a series of my notes from my trip to WorldCon / Anticipation – the big Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention winding up today in Montreal (yes, in Canada ). I had very limited access to the Internet while there, so I jotted notes in a Moleskine pad, so they are from a few days ago, maybe next time I’ll be set up to live blog it.

Flying to the 67th WorldCon, Anticipation, in Montreal . Hopefully building some good karma – but did feel a bit like I was in a David Sedaris skit – was asked to switch my 6B aisle seat for a bulkhead seat up front, 1C, so that a couple could sit together. No problem for me, just want to arrive safe & close to on schedule (unlike these folks) -- lots to do and see this weekend. 15 minutes late boarding….

Finished the first “Part” of Cory Doctorow’s Makers novel serialization. Only printed 2 parts – already wish I’d printed more. Not so unsettling as Little Brother, more energizing/provoking like Dan Pink’s Free Agent Nation or Dave Winer’s ventures. Still on the plane. Need to pee.

First panel: John M. Ford (Apparently known as “Mike” in everyday life). A few folks lingered before the prior panel finished, but it really started filling about now. I guess it was to be expected; Neil Gaiman sheduled (I missed the “c” on purpose there, as one of the, I guess, locals, was saying it that way just now). Novels of interest: Final Reflection, a Star Trek book, from the Klingon POV; How Much for Just the Planet, another Star Trek story. Web of Angels, arguably the first cyberpunk book. The Final Tax wreckless Eric (My notes fail me here – get used to it). From the End of the Twentieth Century short stories; Heat of Fusion.

Pastiche: Green Eggs and Ham in Casa Blanca, apparently written in a comment on Patrick Neilsen Hayden’s Making Light blog.

They ended a bit early, some thought only an hour was scheduled but ‘twas 90 minutes so the after 60 part was Q&A and ad hoc, until an audience member stepped to the mic and told Ford’s bar joke: “Werner Heisenberg, Kurt Godel and Noam Chomsky walk into a bar…” The end of the joke was declared the final word.

Afterthought: the room was full, 200+ people and all the seats, okay 90%, were bad – because it was a flat room with crowded, orthogonal rows of connected chairs. More than one row back and there were heads in your way. The panel was in the same chairs as the audience. Either a dais or bar height chairs and tables would have cured it – or 180 fewer people.

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