I usually get around to reviewing conventions earlier than this, but there are reasons for the delay. First, my wife has been off work for two weeks due to foot surgery. Second, I’ve been busy trying to get back into a writing state of mind now that school is out. And finally, I messed up my back at the convention and that’s limited by time at the computer. I’ll get to that part later.
First, a big thanks to Sarah Basore (aka Sarah St. John) for securing a table we shared outside the dealers’ room. It’s always more fun to share space with someone, and Sarah is a funny and intelligent lady, so that’s even better. (Also a good writer, so read her books!)
Soonercon moved to the Sheraton Hotel in downtown OKC this year. Straight up, I didn’t like the parking situation and I don’t like driving downtown. I don’t like paying to park, either. However, that aside, this location was infinitely better than where the con has been the past few years. Everything was pretty well contained so there was no running from panel to panel in different buildings like at the old hotel. And, the Sheraton is just a nicer, newer facility. I don’t know the official numbers, but the convention seemed to be very well attended this year, and it got coverage on the evening news.
On Friday evening I was one of a handful of guests who had dinner with guest-of-honor Tim Powers, who wrote some little book that inspired a current film starring some guy named Johnny Depp. Tim proved to be very knowledgeable about a lot of literature and was a lot of fun to talk to and listen to.
At the first panel on Saturday morning I went to move a sound system-type thingy that was set up in the middle of the panel table. No biggie. I moved it to the end of the table, which seemed to impress some of the audience members, who then wanted a picture. So I picked it up again and acted like it was much heavier than it was. When I went to put it down, something twinged in my back and the rest of the con experience was colored by pain that has continued, though finally abated somewhat. Man, it sucks to get old! Anyway, the panels were fun and, until Sunday afternoon, very well attended. We had a discussion of Lovecraft’s influence that probably could still be going on.
As always, it was great seeing people who have come to be like extended family … Adrian, Sarah, Sherri, Joyce, the Wolf family, the Sinors, Jim Burke, Christophe, Dennis … Well, way too many to name. I hadn’t seen most of them since early last summer, so it was a lot of fun to get together with them again, and I hope to see them all again real soon.