Back to Reality: Return from Anticipation in Montreal

Many people at work have asked me how my extended weekend was.

They “Oooh,” when I tell them I was in Montreal and then “Ahhh,” when I tell them it was for the World Science Fiction Convention.

Why the all-knowing “Ahhh?”

Because they don’t have a clue what a Convention is all about.

Actually, the “Ahhh” is the politest of judgy responses. Usually it is a titter or a teehee.

If I’m in a good mood, I titter back. If not, the fake smile comes out- I can’t help it, I’m mean.

Everyone envisions thousands of people dressed up in their favourite Star Trek, Stargate, Lord of the Rings or Star Wars character. There is a bit of that but not so much at this Con. I would say only about 5% of the people walking around were in costume.

And there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. A Masquerade is usually held at a Con to showcase the work of amateurs and professionals alike and some of these costumes are absolutely amazing. One of these days, if my sewing skills ever get good enough, I may wear a costume- and be proud of it.

A science fiction convention is a place where like-minded (and sometimes not so like-minded) people gather to socialize, share ideas, debate, get information, do business, network- all these things and more- in a safe environment. No one is going to laugh at you and here it is okay to be the “nerd.”

In all honesty I don’t do a lot of socializing- though I did do more of this than at previous conventions.

I picked up a book at the library the day before we headed to Montreal for the Con. I didn’t realize the author of this book was going to be there until I clicked on the link to her bio and recognized the cover. I gathered up the courage to tell her I really enjoyed her book- which I had finished reading the night before.

I realized I had read the book of another panelist- the main reason I went to the panel in the first place- because she was so amazing at a talk earlier in the Con. Someone held up a card of one of her books and I recognize the cover of a book that I had purchase at a book sale benefitting the Toronto Public Library and had read about six months earlier. I had to tell her I loved the protagonist she had created.

Talk about the power of a memorable cover.

It takes a lot for me to say anything- I am usually there to absorb information. I take copious amounts of notes when I should really bring a digital recorder so I don’t miss out on any information. Doing that would allow me to write down any ideas I may have for my own writing or research.

But I broke down and said something for the first time at the Star Trek convention earlier this summer and again at an environmental panel this past weekend.

Why? Because people were saying stuff that completely pissed me off.

But I’ll save that for another post.

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~ by angryegg on August 11, 2009.

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