I have returned from Readercon (and survived the day after which was a heinously busy day at work!). It was great. I attended some fine panels (and a few less-than-fine), met two of my literary heroes, and absorbed a lot about SF and writing. A more detailed summary will appear [soon!], and I am considering what to focus on for a Forces of Geek column. I think I will have a better idea of what I want to delve into after I write up a report.

Highlights of the con were four in number:

1) Met Samuel R. Delany and Gene Wolfe. I went to their respective Kaffeeklatsches and got to thank them both for their influence on my writing. I got to chat with Mr. Delany more than Mr. Wolfe, and also got him to sign my copy of Nova and a copy of The Jewel-Hinged Jaw. I even got a picture (as seen above)!

2) The Kirk Poland Memorial Bad Prose Competition. It was even funnier than last year, perhaps because this year it was a Tournament of Champions. I love how writers can be both creative and silly simultaneously in this format, and Eric Van is a great MC.

3) Books! There were values galore in the Bookshop this year, and a fair number of freebie books as well. I got some great stuff; not a lot of collector’s items, but a pile of good books. Going around the Bookshop is like traveling through a museum, a carnival, a networking node, and a bazaar at the same time.

4) Cousin. I went with my cousin Frank, which made for a relaxing, funny, sometimes snarky weekend. It was fun to spend time with him and to do things like cruise the Bookshop. It was also fun to get yelled at by him for not getting Howard Waldrop to sign a book he gave me :-).

Given the above, I have done very little writing since Wednesday. But I will be back to it tomorrow. The novel beckons, as does a short story, and of course a Readercon report.

A sad note: Charles Brown died on his way home from Readercon. The guiding hand of Locus
was an important influence on the field, and I wish I had done more than just say “Hi Mr. Brown!” the last time that I saw him.

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