World Sci Fi Con Brings Fan a Renewed Sense of Geekiness
And the authors were everywhere, not just in panels, readings and signings. I almost literally bumped into famed alternate history writer Harry Turtledove while browsing books in the dealers room, and a few seconds later, in the same spot, there was con Guest of Honor Lois McMaster Bujold chatting with the dealer. I took a piss three stalls down from Walter Jon Williams. Everywhere I looked, there was a writer responsible for the works I used to immerse myself in when I was younger and less prone to immerse myself in booze and/or drugs. It was kind of cool, in a really uncool way. The panels themselves – where a group of writers, fans or whoever get together and discuss some issue, trend or idea related to science fiction – ranged from moderately interesting to fascinating. The most interesting was a think tank of science fiction writers called Sigma, who advise the Department of Homeland Security and other government agencies on terrorism, technology and related topics (aliens weren’t mentioned, but I want to believe the issue has come up). I also saw a truly impressive masquerade (kind of a costume contest with performance art elements), spent way too much money on books (including an autographed copy of the newest Michael Swanwick collection!) and generally got my geek on. The experience has rekindled an interest that, although it’s never exactly flagged, has definitely been forsaken in the pursuit of other things in recent years. I’ll never be able to dedicate the time or energy to it that I did as a geeky junior high kid, when my days consisted of school and plowing through sci-fi novels, but I see a lot more genre books in my future. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a lengthy reading list to get through. -- Cory Caciato
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