Magical Truthsaying Bastard Shadesong (shadesong) wrote,
Magical Truthsaying Bastard Shadesong

Readercon: Saturday/Sunday

I should start this by saying:

My husband Adam is yendi on LJ. He's the one who looks like Patrick Dempsey with glasses.
My boyfriend Mark is feste_sylvain on LJ. He's the one with "the wild grey hair", as our Claire said.
My daughter Elayna is not on LJ, but she is on Facebook; you can request friendship with her, but please do not be sad if she does not remember you and thus does not friend you back. She's far more discerning on Facebook than I am.

So. Saturday!

10AM: The Year in Novels. Rose Fox (L), Shira Lipkin, Graham Sleight, Gary K. Wolfe.
We decided that the year in question was 2009, and we were off to the races. This was a very fast-moving, bantery panel, with all of the panelists clearly having a blast and excited to talk about books of interest - and also having some well-thought-out criticism. Good balance. Boneshaker by Cherie Priest got mad props, of course. Rose asked for my favorite urban fantasy book of the year, since the other panelists were more SF - I said Sandman Slim, by Richard Kadrey. Seriously awesome stuff, with a sequel coming out soon! Speaking of seriously awesome stuff with sequels coming out, um, yesterday - when asked for other recommendations, I did declare that the Norton should have gone to Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater, which I really cannot praise highly enough.

The Empress of Mars - Kage Baker
Shambling Toward Hiroshima - James Morrow
Captain Freedom: A Superhero's Quest for Truth, Justice, and the Celebrity He So Richly Deserves - G. Xavier Robillard
City Without End - Kay Kenyon
Monster - A. Lee Martinez
Lightbreaker - Mark Teppo
Sandman Slim - Richard Kadrey
All You Need is Kill - Hiroshi Sakurazaka
The Magicians - Lev Grossman
This is Not a Game - Walter Jon Williams
The Devil's Alphabet - Daryl Gregory

The Stepsister Scheme & Mermaid's Madness - Jim C. Hines
Liar - Justine Larbalestier
Leviathan - Scott Westerfeld
Going Bovine - Libba Bray
Hotel Under the Sand - Kage Baker
Silver Phoenix - Cindy Pon

11-1 was wandering with the fabulous poetesses, and a lunch break at Fresh City with feste_sylvain, Elayna, sevenravens, and pattytempleton - then back in time for the "Folklore and its Discontents" panel! Which was fun, albeit with a bit of WTFery, and all-around could have done with more wirewalking. I find that most situations can benefit from more wirewalking.

From there, I intended to go to "Science for Tomorrow's Fiction", but heard it was already SRO. Too tired to stand up for an hour. :P I lounged in the lobby with Elayna and a rotating cast of nifty people. Bumped into the lovely tithenai just in time to practice for the Rhysling Awards Poetry Slan - in all of the rush of activity and panel prep, I... had forgotten to read my nominated poem aloud.



So practicing with tithenai was very beneficial! And we found a stairwell to do so in - reading and singing surrounded by pounding rain spattering the windows, all secretive in our nook. Fun! And then we skipped most of the way back down the hall, arm in arm, because we are silly like that. <3

Saturday 3:00 PM: The Rhysling Award Poetry Slan. Mike Allen MC), Erik Amundsen, Kate Baker, Leah Bobet, C.S.E. Cooney, Amal El-Mohtar, Gemma Files, Francesca Forest, Nicole Kornher-Stace, Shira Lipkin, Caitlyn Paxson, Darrell Schweitzer, Sonya Taaffe, Cecilia Tan.
Want to know who read what, with links when available? time_shark provides! I had to go second, after Sonya Taaffe, meep - but I was surprised and gratified by the number of "woohoo"s when he called me up. Thanks, guys! <3 The reading itself went quite well, I think, with no stumbling from me, and I think my pace was okay. I'd read many of the poems that were read that day, but it lends something else entirely to hear them read aloud by the poet herself or himself. I'd dragged Elayna and her friend in, and they did not regret it. :) Everyone was awesome!
And congratulations to the kickass samhenderson and Kendall Evans, winners in the long-poem category for their wonderful "In the Astronaut Asylum"! And time_shark and wirewalking for their second-place wins, in the long and short categories respectively!

Late afternoon and evening was more milling around in the lobby. A bunch of us grabbed hallway space, and an impromptu picnic broke out; we heard ktempest's Jem polyamory theory (very sound actually) and saw a brilliant imitation of a rabid ferret by Ben Rosenbaum. I have the latter on video. Muahaha. Every time we looked around, we had more people and more food. Parties just spontaneously happen. This is why I love cons.

We eventually needed real food, so Mark and I grabbed pub food and then hit ckd's birthday party, which was much fun. I'm almost sad there are no cons around my birthday; I'd do the same!

We adjourned from there to our guerrilla Twelfth Night reading, seizing one of the programming rooms and declaring it our very own.

Viola: Elayna
Orsino: Adam, then sevenravens
Olivia: vyrdolak1998
Sebastian: feste_sylvain
Maria: csecooney
Sir Toby Belch: Me!
Sir Andrew Aguecheek: pattytempleton
Malvolio: tithenai
Feste: feste_sylvain
Fabian: feste_sylvain
Antonio: Me

Oh you guys. The hilarity of Cooney's Maria and tithenai's Malvolio! And feste_sylvain's madrigals, which caused everyone to break character for a moment. And the very slashy Sebastian/Antonio dynamic that tithenai had never noticed before. It was just a ridiculous amount of fun all around. :)

Then time_shark's party, where there was bad porn and cupcake bukkake. And much giggling. And then, sadly, we had to leave, because Miss Kid was just exhausted.


10:00 AM: Interstitial Arts Foundation Town Meeting. Sarah Smith with discussion by K. Tempest Bradford, Theodora Goss, Alaya Dawn Johnson, Shira Lipkin.
We decided early on to ditch the formal panel setup and just pull the chairs around in something of a circle and just talk. We reviewed all of the awesome stuff we've done in the past - the anthologies, the auctions, the readings/concerts, et cetera - and all of the nifty stuff we're planning for the future. Interested in art (of any sort) that defies boundaries? Join us!

11:00 AM: Theodore Sturgeon Short Story Reading: "Pruzy's Pot" (1972) Vol 12. A couple gets a weird toilet; a satire of DIY living.
The Sturgeon readings are a new thing; they asked for volunteers from among the panelists to read a Sturgeon story of their choice. I have been a huge Sturgeon fan since middle school, so of course I requested one! As it turns out, the readings were organized by Sturgeon's daughter Noel, who was just wonderful; it was such a pleasure to meet her. And as other readers have said, how cool is it to read one of his stories in front of his daughter and grandson? The readings were all recorded for later podcasting, so at some point you too can hear me read about coprophagia!

One of the things I especially love about Readercon is that here, it's not just about the next hot thing; here there's a sense of history, which was very much reflected in the weekend-long Sturgeon readings. I like the next hot thing as much as the next girl! But I have such fond memories of discovering golden-age SF at my library as a kid. This is part of me, too.

We broke for lunch, and I hung out in the dealer's room with tithenai and Anita Allen for a while, with guest appearances from sevenravens, suzgoddessmom, and others. Then the last panel of the con, Gender & Sexuality in Contemporary SF & F, which... didn't touch on gender at all. Which was disappointing unto me, as sex, yes, we all like it, people do it a lot, sometimes with kink (yay!), but gender is, too me, a much more interesting and transgressive topic. Alas. Maybe next year, or maybe at Arisia.

And then there were so many hugs goodbye! And then home, where pretty much the rest of my day way devoted to staying awake til bedtime.

So hey! Readercon! That was fun!
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