The 2012 World Fantasy Convention was fun, intimidating, thought-provoking, and inspiring. Held within driving distance of
Toronto, it was an easy
decision to attend. The $225 price tag was expensive, but I can appreciate that
the price and the limited number of tickets would keep the geek riff-raft away!
The con took place at the Sheraton Hotel in
Markham, ironically the
same place that hosted the PolarisCon earlier in the year which left a terrible
taste in my mouth. Fortunately, this wonderful event has cleansed my psyche of
the negative impression left behind by PolarisCon.
Imagine a gather of introverted writers, all coming out of their caves to meet and talk and network. Yeah, I have a difficult time imagining all that awkwardness. Maybe it’s just me! I’ve had a handful of stories published (for money, yes for money), but I haven’t broken in to any of the more significant or distinguished publications. I’m working on a novel, like everyone else at the con. I’m a professional blogger and comic book journalist/history (accredited by the San Diego Comic Con). I found it difficult to be taken seriously and had a few respected pros glance at my badge and then dart away from me.
Maybe I’m just too much of an introvert or too paranoid, but I got the impression from some professionals that they had no time to talk to anyone outside of their professional clique. And clique makes me think back to those awkward teenage years. Everyone has to start somewhere and I was hoping the “pay-it-forward” mentality would be a bit more prevalent.
With that said, it wasn’t a complete void of thoughtfulness. There are a few classy professionals who have never made me feel that I was imposing or intruding upon them. And for that I’m thankful and appreciate the efforts they made to include me and to simply call me out by name and talk with me.
Highlights included the launch of Guy Kay's new book, an amazing panel on the Lexicon of Horror, the Chizine party where I talked comics for two hours with a PR rep from 2000AD, my cell phone going off during Peter Straub's reading, autograph session, dinner out with Ian Rogers, great food spread and beer at the hospitality suite, and panels, panels, and more panels.