Recapping My FIrst Con

Now that I’m home, it’s time for me to look back on my first convention and reflect.

I’m not going to go through everything, not just because that would take too long, but also because I’m not that intersted in doing so. I prefer to look at the experience as a whole, because I think there was more to this for me than just the individual things I did.

I wasn’t really sure what to expect when I registered, or even when I arrived. I mean, I’ve seen pictures and heard a bit from others who have gone to cons, but not from Norwescon, so far as I know, and even then, it’s not the same as going. It’s not the same as seeing and experiencing it all.

I did expect to see a lot of people in various costumes, and I did, but they were still amazing. Some people just did a little bit, and that looked cool. Others went all out. I mean, some of the ones I saw were so detailed and complete. I mean, there were a few that were downright ornate. It was fabulous, even if I can’t imagine getting dressed up like that myself. I have no idea what my favorite was, because every time I decided, I saw another Β that I simply loved. Before anyone asks, no I didn’t get any pictures. I didn’t want to bother people. Hell, some of them seemed barely able to take two steps before being asked for yet another picture. I’m sure they loved the appreciation of their costumes, but still, I couldn’t add to that.

I think the most amusing part of the costumes was when people in them went outside the convention. The looks on other people’s faces was kind of awesome. Beyond that, there was something unique about standing in line at the Jack-in-the-Box and having a Klingon flirt with me. I swear, only at a con is that likely to happen. πŸ˜‰

The Double-Tree, the hotel the con was at, was well equipped, particularly with the Starbucks kiosk in the lobby. You can only imagine how busy that place was, and I can’t begin to imagine the amount of money they must have made this weekend. I was certainly a good customer. πŸ™‚

I didn’t do absolutely everything, for a number of reasons. For one thing, there was a great variety of panels and events you could attend, enough to appeal to almost anyone’s purposes, and not all of them were of interest to me. But I did go to most of the ones I wanted to see. I was lucky that there was only one or two conflicts for the entire weekend. However, I got felled late Friday with a migraine and missed the last two panels I’d planned on attending, one of which was writing-related, the other personal.

Many of the panels I was able to see were fascinating and a number of them could have done with being half a day long just on their specific subject. I feel like I learned a lot and in some ways was very inspired on a number of levels. Β It’s going to take some time to process it all, but I have notes from everything, so I’ll manage.

I also went to a few readings. The one by Carol Berg was wonderful, as she read from her upcoming book. My only problem was that I couldn’t buy the book right then. In fact, I have to wait for summer of NEXT YEAR! Yes, I’m not happy about that. I’m not a fan of anticipation, though I will be anticipating this one every day between now and the release date. I also went to another reading, by a group call Broad Universe. I got to hear a number of female writers and found it fascinating. There are a couple I particularly liked a couple of them and will be checking out their books. Who knows, I may have found new favorite authors. πŸ™‚

There was an art exhibit as well, and that was interesting as well. It wasn’t just drawings and paintings either, though many of those were beautiful or powerful. But there was also jewelry and sculptures, metal work and even one display of colorful scale mail. I loved walking through and looking at it.

And last but not least, there was the dealers room. I have to say, I shouldn’t have been allowed in there alone. It took considerable self-control not to buy ALL THE THINGS. Seriously, was so tempted. As it is, I managed to limit myself to a few books, two already signed and one to be signed later, and a a lovely purple corset. I tried it on on a whim, but then couldn’t bear to not buy it. We won’t go into the litany of things I was tempted by. This post is already too long, really, and I’m not quite done.

One of the other best things about the con was talking to other writers, especially meeting Carol, who is absolutely wonderful and was very kind to a scared and overwhelmed fan. She personalized the one book when I took it to be signed. I won’t share the message, but I will say that it was special and sweet and I think she might have totally had my number from the beginning. I wish I had the words to thank her for that. Maybe one day, I’ll manage it.

Looking back on all this, I’m left with a single important question, at least immediately. Will I go again? Will I go next year to Norwescon, or perhaps another? I can’t say for sure, but I think so. I had a good time, but I think I would have had a better time if I hadn’t spent so much time being so overwhelmed by it all. I might have gotten more involved in things, planned a little better. But then, I’m rarely good at something the first time I do it. That suggests to me that, if I go again, I’ll do more, have a better time. Certainly, I’d have more of an idea of what to expect and be a bit more used to it all. I have time to make that decision yet, but I suspect it’ll be yes, at least on Norwescon.

Of course, reflecting on all this, and how bad I am at first times has led to another idea. The gods help me if I ever get back into dating. I mean, every first date is a first time, and if that goes poorly, there isn’t a second. Hmm, maybe it’s for the best if I just don’t bother… πŸ˜‰

Oh, and in all of that, I even managed to get work done, to make progress on a number of things. But I’ll save that for another blog post. That deserves it’s own post, trust me. Besides, I have to leave you anticipating something, right?

About Julie

I'm a writer and photographer. I always have something with me to take notes for ideas or writing projects I'm thinking about or have on the go. I also like to go around with my camera and take pictures of anything that strikes me as beautiful or evocative. I'm perpetually working on one story or another, while waiting for enough distance to judge the last one (or more). I'm always working on several projects at once, developing the next book, even as I'm editing the last. Beyond that, there's always plenty of scraps and twists of ideas rolling around in my head, eventually turning themselves into full blown stories.
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7 Responses to Recapping My FIrst Con

  1. beaubarnett says:

    First dates are easy. Second dates are hard πŸ™‚

  2. Pete Denton says:

    Sounds like you had a good time. I’m thinking of going to a Crime Festival later in the year. I’m nervous about going for some reason, I’m sure they won’t bite πŸ˜‰

    First times of anything can be scary, but you know now for next time.

  3. Morgen Rich says:

    I just KNEW you’d have fun and enjoy it. Cons are such good places to meet other writers and to explore all the variations on the Con theme. No two are exactly the same, and that’s one of the fun things about them. I’m equally sure you’ll find that out for yourself, and someday, you’ll be telling me, “Oh, I wouldn’t miss it for the world!” πŸ™‚

    • Julie says:

      Yeah, I’m already thinking about what I’d do differently, among other things, but I suspect I’ll be going again next year. In fact, I’m almost certain of it. πŸ™‚

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