Monday, 1 October 2012

FantasyCon 2012 - The Aftermath

This morning I find myself feeling a little tired, with aching legs and a strange sense of displacement... Ah, yes, it was FantasyCon this past weekend. That'll explain it...

I arrived at Friday lunchtime in time to have a pint* practically put straight into my hand and then it was off to the 'How Important Are Blogs?' panel, which due to the vagaries of people's travel plans meant it became dubbed the 'Angry Robot How Important Are Blogs?' panel. The general consensus of opinion was that blogs are important**, although Emelyn Rees isn't a fan of author blogs****.

Straight after the Angry Robot panel it was time for 'Blurring Genre Boundaries' which was the first FantasyCon panel I've sat on. It was moderated my m'editor Jonathan Oliver and was a really fun panel, with a great atmosphere****. It is always pleasing when other well-known writers and editors attend panels and on this occasion is was Joe Abercrombie who came up with a great question from the floor.

The rest of the day became a blurring of catching up with old friends and making more new ones. (Just don't search for #JonCon on Twitter, whatever you do!) But the main event was yet to happen.

Saturday was, to use the vernacular, 'full on'. The day began with a very necessary hearty breakfast and then it was straight off to 'What Makes A Good Short Story?' with m'colleagues Cavan Scott and Mr Kit Cox. During the course of the panel I'm pleased to say that my one-time roomie Simon Bestwick was recommended as a master of the horror short.

The rest of the day involved various book launches - Angry Robot as well as the already legendary Solaris/Abaddon Give-Away, the launch of the new Solaris anthology Magic - not meeting James Herbert in the bar, not meeting Mark Gatiss in the bar, and making plans for a new anthology...

At the Solaris/Abaddon Give-Away.

Now that's Magic!

The Angry Robot's less angry meat-slaves.

Then it was time for 'Is Steampunk Here To Stay?' my second panel of the con, moderated by Jared Shurin, and with Yours Truly as the only author on the panel who seemed happy to have his work described as steampunk. To sum up the panel Kim Newman thinks steampunk has had its day and is on its way out, I think it's here to stay, and Eastern literature may be the source of its salvation.

Can you feel the tension in the room? I could!

After going for dinner with friends, there's not really very much to say about Saturday evening other than...


Gollancz challenged the FantasyCon attendees (which included writers, editors and publishers, as well as book-bloggers and other fans of the genre) to drink their free bar dry. After about half an hour that challenge had been met.

Pimms, you say? Why thank you, sir! That's my five-a-day sorted anyway.

I have to say there's nothing quite like a room full of authors and the like dancing (and shouting along to) The Beatles' Paperback Writer.

Need I say more?

There's also nothing quite like doing a reading at 10.30am on the Sunday morning after the disco with very little voice but I'm delighted to say that despite being up against the BFS AGM and the Sunday Morning Hangover, including myself my reading's attendance made double figures. Thanks again for those who came to listen (including David Tallerman) and for the kind comments afterwards.

Yes, that is a throne I'm sitting upon.

Congratulations to all involved in the organisation of the event and a big thank you to Marie O'Regan, Paul Kane, Alex and Emma Davis in particular. Here's to World FantasyCon 2013!

* The first of many.

** Which was a relief, otherwise what's the point in me typing this first thing on a Monday morning?

*** I would have liked to have caught up with him later to discuss his comments and set out an argument for the defence but there just wasn't the time - it really was that busy.

**** At least I thought so.


Tony Hough said...

Even more of a shame I couldn't make it....I could have shown you lot how to dance........!!

Jonathan Green said...

Now that I would like to see. ;-)