WorldCON Day 3

Skyline of Reno, Nevada. Camera is looking nor...

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Still attending WorldCON in Reno, Nevada.

Got out late yesterday.  My body finally learned about the 6.2.1 thing that someone here told me about.  It means “Sleep for six hours, eat twice, shower once”.  The result is that the Day 2 blog got out late and used up convention time.  So yesterday I started early, sitting in CONSuite and typing most of this during a break.  By the way, the “eat twice” thing never will work for me, I’m a hobbit.  Eating only three times a day for me is roughing it.  I’ll be glad when I stop adventuring, go home, and stop missing all those extra meals.

I started out attending the Christian Fandom Breakfast Party at 8:30 this morning in which I made some more new friends and gave away four signed and captioned copies of my book.  I held up a copy and said, “Here is some Science Fiction that is guaranteed free of mature content.  I’ll give a free copy to the first four people who raise their hand and say ‘Give me one!'”  Four hands shot up immediately…and yes they were all adults  After that we all stood around for a while and talked about a number of topics, mostly coffee (which the party didn’t have because they couldn’t find any at a decent price) and steampunk costuming.

Then, after returning to my hotel room and pounding out yesterday’s blog, I came back and attended “Life, the Universe and Everything: A Dialog about Science, Science Fiction, and Religion”.  This was actually a one-on-one interview of Guy Consolmagno by Paul Cornell.  Guy has the interesting distinction of being both a scientist and a Jesuit priest.  He is also a very engaging and entertaining speaker and living, walking, talking proof that the famous battle between science and religion is all in the heads of those who fight the battle between science and religion.

Next, came “Introduction to Steampunk”.  For several years, ever since Lawrence Dagstine introduced me to a Steampunk magazine that he writes for, I have struggled to wrap my brain around Steampunk.  At CONduit, when my daughter showed up dressed up as a steampunk sky pirate, it gave me incentive, and I’ve been attempting to understand it well enough to write a story (and perhaps a Masquerade line) around her character.  Well, now I think I finally get it.  I have heard it called “brown goth” but that doesn’t quite do it.  I think the reason for my problems is that I am a purist history buff who searches (in vain, it would seem) to find “true” history.  I got halfway through James Michner’s “Space”, and enjoyed it very much, before I realized that it is beyond a dramatization and that many (perhaps even most) of the actual events in the book are fictional…ever since then I just can’t get into it.  Enjoying any alternate history is a struggle for me, even in fiction (I know…I’m weird).    After attending this panel at WorldCON I now think I understand.  I guess what threw me was just the open-ended nature of it pushing against my hard-scifi need to put technology in a box and define its parameters.  Now all I need to do is ditch my need to put technology in a box and define its parameters.

It bugs me a little bit that the Reno media doesn’t seem to notice this Con.  Many folks who should be interested in it aren’t.  So I’ve started echoing some Tweets to #reno to draw attention, we’ll see if it does anything.  Other #renosf tweeters should do the same.

My book, Into the Dark: Escape of the Nomad is available in the dealer room at the Con at Larry Smith Booksellers on Island B and at Adventures in Crime and Space in Island G.  If you’re here at WorldCON and buy a book, get in touch with me (either through the Con message system or this blog) and I’ll find you and sign it with a caption and a personal thank you.  The book tells the story of an astronaut who looses his job when NASA gets cancelled in 2023, so he steals their starship designs and builds the ship on his own, getting himself caught up in a dangerous game of cloak-and-dagger between two alien superpowers fighting over Earth.

Well, its morning.  I got my 6 hours of sleep…and my first meal…all I need now is that shower and I’m good to venture back out to WorldCON.

~ by Bill Housley on August 20, 2011.

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