Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Readout of Last Weekend's Ravencon Convention

I had a great time at Ravencon this past weekend.  I got to meet some old friends, like Charles Gannon, and make some new ones: Leona Wisoker, John Betancourt of Wildside Press, and the members of Hatton Cross Steampunk, to name just a few. I also want to shout out a thanks to Dennis and his wife for coming out to support me, as well as to those fans who showed up at the late-night reading of my newest short story. 

Myself and mystery/thriller author Austin S. Camacho
This was my first time attending a convention as a celebrity guest and to sit on panels, which were loads of fun.  On some of the panels I was in over my head, especially "Is Your Brain Steampunk?"  The topic of conversation was whether our brains worked on the analog or digital model, and was being moderated by a neurosurgeon.  Talk about being out of your league.  All I could offer was "I once wrote a story about steampunk zombies." (Note to self: Next time, check out the panels a little more thoroughly before signing up for them.)  But I kicked living dead butt on the "Surviving a Zombie Apocalypse" panel (many thanks to fellow panel members Leo Champion and Bruce Scholl of Geek Radio Daily for helping to prepare everyone for the much anticipated zombie apocalypse) and "Zombies vs. Robots," which turned out to be a pleasant chat between me, fellow panelist Andrew Fox, and the audience.  And to prove that our topic was timely and important, and not just a fun way to waste an hour, this article appeared on the Zombie Research Society website around the same time as the convention. 

I was very fortunate to sit on several writing-related panels with very talented authors (Day Al-Mohamed, A.J. Hartley, Meriah Crawford, J.M. Lee, Bud Sparhawk, KT Pinto, Barb Fischer, Robert E. Waters, and Stuart Jaffe).  During one panel on "Handling Potentially Offensive Topics" (and those who are familiar with my writing know that I can be potentially offensive), myself and several others were challenged by Nobilis Reed to come up with short stories about tentacle sex for his upcoming anthology Coming Together Arm in Arm in Arm.., the proceeds from which will benefit the Oceana ocean preservation society.  Since I rarely turn down a writing challenge, this should be interesting.  ("But Your Honor, I wasn't downloading tentacle porn from the Internet.  I was doing research for my next short story.  Honest.")

Steampunk Darth Vader from the hatten Cross Steampunk group
Attending horror/Sci-Fi/fantasy conventions is one of the perks of being a writer.  I love being around people like myself who appreciate the genre and how much it means to us.  If I have as good a time next month at Crypticon as I did at Ravencon, then Seattle will rock.

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