I went to bed sometime after 1:30am Sunday morning but as usual, I was still up around 6:30. I tried to stay in bed, catching up on my RSS feed and other news. But I wanted some breakfast so I showered, dressed and headed to the hotel restaurant. The hotel lobby is relatively quiet on Sunday mornings of conventions. For some reason, when people are out partying late at night, or spending their entire days on panels, they are not prone to waking up with the sun.
I tried to use this time to my advantage. I update this blog. I caught up on Twitter and Facebook. And I even managed to write some fiction. I had quite a bit of time to kill. I wandered through the dealer’s room and had some lunch and finally, at 1pm, I attended my last panel.
The panel was called “How Many Years In the Business Before They Stop Calling Me a New Writer” and it was a good panel. It was moderated by Diana Peterfreund (who did a great job moderating, by the way) and the other panelists included Jennifer Pelland and Alan Smale. This was a fun, lively panel with a good audience and good audience participation. Hopefully we said things that they found useful.
When the panel was over it was my plan to head right home, but there was a crowd around the lobby television watching Felix Baumgartner’s space jump. I had to stop and watch that too. The jump was a success, and an apropos way of ending a science fiction convention.
I had a blast at Capclave. I love having a local convention of such high quality, with such good guests, panelist and attendees. And big props and thanks yous should go out to the folks who gave up a lot of time to plan it all and put it all together. And how about next year, with Capclave’s guests of honor include George R. R. Martin, Sharyn November, and Steve Stiles.
Capclave is my local science fiction convention. It takes place in Gaithersberg, Maryland, not too far from my house, and it is the convention that I have attended most frequently. This year marks the fifth year that I've come up for the fun. Each year I've become a little more involved in the convention. Last year was my first year sitting on panels at Capclave. Yesterday, I set a personal record for the number of panels I sat on in a single day.
I left the house just before 7am and arrived at the convention hotel at about 7:45 yesterday morning. My first panel of the day was scheduled for 9am and I was moderating the panel so I wanted to make sure I was here with time to spare, especially since the participants on this panel included the convention guests of honor, John Scalzi and Nick Mamatas. Also on the panel was Morgan Keyes. The subject: “Online Presence.”
There was a pretty decent crowd when the panel got started and the room continued to fill in as the panel progressed. I'd moderated two or three panels prior to this one and so I'm still learning. I did my best to prepare questions that would make for an interesting and lively discussion and I think for the most part that is what we got. A number of folks told me afterward that they really enjoyed the panel and I was glad to hear that because I was probably more nervous than I showed moderating this one.
When that panel was over I had a gap in my schedule and filled the time wandering around the convention area. I stopped at the dealer's room and browsed but didn't buy anything. I used to love the dealer's rooms when I first started coming to conventions. Over time, I've found that while I enjoy browsing, I generally don't buy anything. Most dealers rooms no longer carry the kind of thing I'm most interested in, old copies of Astounding. Sure, they will occassionally have issues from the mid-1950s or early 1960s, but I'm looking for issues from the mid-1930s to mid-1940s and these just don't seem to make appearances in the dealer room.
I also spent time finding friends that I was looking forward to seeing here. I saw Bill Lawhorn, convention programmer extraordinairre shortly after I arrived. Almost immediately, I ran into Brian Shaw and Ej Lawrence. Later I ran into Meagen Voss, Bud Sparhawk and David Bartell. And at some point, I also ran into Kat Otis.
Just a reminder to everyone that I am at Capclave this weekend, a regional science fiction convention in Gaithersberg, Maryland that is made of awesome. This convention focuses on written science fiction and in particular, short fiction, which is my thing. John Scalzi and Nick Mamatas are guests of honor this year.
I finished my first panel of the day. It was on “Online Presence” and I moderated Morgan Keyes, John Scalzi and Nick Mamatas. It was a lively panel and all three panelists were great. As a moderator, I'm still learning, but I think I did okay.
Next up is my reading–the first public reading I've ever done. It's schedule for 12:30pm so if you are attending Capclave, stop by Room 254 so that I have an audience to read to. I've picked out three possible stories and probably have time to read two of them.
I'm on 5 panels today, plus a reading and so my appearance on the blog may be sporadic, although I will try and get up a post about my first day here late tonight or early tomorrow.
It is hard to believe that on the heels of Worldcon, Capclave is now less than a month away.
This time around, the good folks who run Capclave have given me a pretty heavy schedule of programming. And while, tentative, it all look very, very good. Here is what is on my plate for the weekend:
- 9am: Online Presence with Morgan Keyes, Nick Mamatas, and John Scalzi.
- 12:30pm: Reading. Note: this is my first-ever reading!
- 5pm: Golden Age SF with Roger MacBride Allen and Tom Doyle.
- 6pm: Unwritten Secrets of Writers Groups with Meriah Lysistrata Crawford, Aly Parsons,and Jim Stratton
- 10pm: Who Are the Early Master of Modern Science Fiction with Michael Dirda, Tom Doyle, Doug Fratz, and Darrell Schweitzer
- 11pm: Shortest Fiction with Larry Hodges, Dina Leacock, Craig Allen Loewen, and Jennifer Pelland.
- 1pm: How Many Years in the Business Before They Stop Calling Me a New Writer? with Diana Peterfreund, Jamie Todd Rubin, Alan Smale
And now a few comments:
- OMG! I am on a panel with John Scalzi, Nick Mamatas, and Morgan Keyes on Online Presence. Dude! That is so awesome.
- OMG! I am on a panel with Michael Dirda. That, too, is pretty darn cool!
- OMG! I am on a panel with Jennifer Pelland, whose stories–particularly ones like “Organ Nell”–I’ve always admired.
- OMG! I am going to do a reading–my very first. Now I have to think about what to read…?
- OMG! I am on panels until midnight on Saturday. That is going to make for one long day!
Again, this is just a tentative schedule. I imagine a more finalized version will be forthcoming in the next couple of weeks. But it looks like a pretty amazing schedule.