Posts Tagged ‘MosCon Science Fiction’

I did have a great weekend at MosCon Revival, just as I hoped. For one thing, we drove down Saturday and stayed until Sunday afternoon, so we didn’t have that all-day-in-the-car experience. We got to spend time with a lot of old friends, which was a big reason for going down there. It was especially good to spend a few minutes with my dear old mentor, M. J. Engh. That’s a thing money can’t buy.

The featured speakers were Cat Rambo and Richard Kadrey. They were excellent, friendly, and always on topic. I enjoyed their panels a lot. One of my highlights was getting a first-page reading from them that was on my next novella, The Ghostly Grove. They had nice things to say and were very encouraging.

The panel I was on was about whether women look for different experiences in games and got off more into harassment in online venues. But that is a real issue, so I felt it was productive panel.

Because the event was small, we got a lot of great exposure for SpoCon. We talked about our best programming and passed out flyers to convince people to come. We even got questions from the wait staff at the place where we went for lunch and gave them flyers, too.

We had fun and the response was great. But next weekend? Next weekend, I’M STAYING HOME!

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By the time you read this, I’ll be in Pullman, WA for the MosCon Revival. It’s going to be a fun weekend of panels, stumping for SpoCon, and feeling nostalgic for days gone by.

My panel is Do Women Game Differently? Our first task, I assume, will be to define what KIND of gaming — tabletop role-playing, video gaming, or something else? Then we’ll talk about the intersection of plot goals and play goals and how some of these may be more oriented to men’s interests than women’s. Which doesn’t mean the gals don’t play, just that we have to head-canon things like conversation with NPCs that may not be built into the game. It should be a fun discussion, anyhow.

My other main interest is in a First Pages panel that will be led by Cat Rambo. They don’t give much direction on their web site, but usually it means you bring your first page and the moderator reads it, then the panelists give critiques. I’m going to bring the first page for The Ghostly Grove, the next novella in my Minstrels of Skaythe series. The feedback should be valuable as I prepare for a fall publication.

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After talking with my husband, I will indeed be attending the MosCon Revival convention. The dates are June 21-23, although I will be there Saturday and Sunday only. My topic is “Do Women Game Differently?” I’m hoping they will put a man on the panel with me, so we can have some back-and-forth to compare our experiences. This is even more on-the-fly than Sandemonium, the week before. I’m really not worried, though. I can talk and be entertaining for an hour, no problem.

For those not familiar with Inland Northwest conventions, MosCon holds a special place in many hearts. When they started in 1979, it was the only SF event in the region. The next closest were in Seattle, WA or Portland, OR. One of the two founders was the late Jon Gustafson, an expert in SF art. At his urging, MosCon became the first SF convention in the nation to have an Artist Guest of Honor. They may also have been the first to invite a Science Guest of Honor, but I won’t swear to that.

The conventions continued for 20 years. Although time took its toll in concom burnout or having to leave for career opportunities, they were excellent for many years. I’m thrilled to be part of this revival. If you’re in the region, I urge you to come up and join us.

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A lot of things have stacked up for me in the past few weeks. I feel like I’m juggling time bombs!

The major one is that SpoCon, our local SF Convention, is just two months away and I’ve started laying out the programs. This is always a combination of great excitement, because of so many wonderful ideas for panels and presentations, with frustration because there are 150 ideas and only about 75 spots. Now is when I have to cut back, and it’s always a special agony.

I also have a group yard sale this weekend that I haven’t gotten my donations ready for. Time is short to get on with that.

Next thing is, the end of the school year. I’m madly trying to get the last bit of teaching that I can. Next year I’m assigned to a different school, so I’ll spend the remaining few days packing up my things and making sure the teachers who are left get all the right data from my students.

In two weeks, I’m at Sandemonium, a small one-day convention in Sandpoint, ID. I’m presenting on “Ugly Tropes and How to Destroy Them.” I haven’t really prepared for that one, either, although at least I have done the pre-thinking part. Actually writing the presentation should go pretty quickly.

The weekend after, there’s an event in Moscow, ID that commemorates the MosCon Science Fiction Convention. I’d love to go, even though I’m not on any panels, because I have such fond memories of MosCon. We’ll have to see how the money holds up for that.

And hopefully I’ll get a chance to write on my novella during all this!

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