I ran two tracks at Balticon this year, the New Media track and the leviathan literary track. As fun as it was, I think it was too big a job for one person, at least one Patrick, at least one Patrick working as a volunteer who also wants to write stories and stuff. I think I did pretty good considering I was running those (though special thanks to the data entry people and the people I mentioned before in my post on Balticonians of Splendour). Next year, I’m going to be focusing more on New Media again though my current understanding is I’ll still be involved in helping out the literary track.
Still, with all the work to be done, tons of cool stuff ended up being scheduled and this is my greatest hits for what I experienced this weekend. I’m sure other cool stuff happened. I might even have been there. But I make no promises that I was actually conscious while I was participating.
1) The men with hats reading. J Daniel Sawyer, David Robison, and I in hats reading our original work. Yeah it was good. Notice our hats. Mine is biggest. I’m compensating for something. Brains.
2) Losing my raffle ticket. At the shared desk on Monday I lost my raffle ticket and they gave me a new one… which immediately turned into a winning one and I got a Jim Hines calendar. It was weird. I don’t usually win stuff. Plus I won a copy of Ministry Protocols.
3) Signing my first print book for a reader. At the Dirty Magick reading, David Robison asked me to sign his copy of Dirty Magick, where my first print short story was published. It was my first autographing of a book and it felt kind of super awesome. I signed a couple more and that’s when it hit me that I’d actually been published for reals with a story, not just in poetry journals.
4) The Talent Vs Producer panel. The audience was the same size as the panel but it had a whole bunch of neat people and great discussion about the different roles and how to do it from both an indie perspective as well as a professional perspective.
5) Monday morning Paged to Pod panel. Sure only Paul Cooley and I showed up but it was us plus two of my best friends and one audience member quizzing us on turning books into podcasts. Paul was almost recovered from his street reading. Almost.
6) Getting owned by Brandon Sanderson playing Magic the Gathering.
This actually didn’t happen to me but my friend did it and he said it was some great draft experience. After talking with Brandon’s agent before the convention, this idea got sent back through the chain of command and then some of the other folks made sure it happened. It was a brilliant idea to have a chance for 15 people to sit down in a magic tournament with the Guest of Honor and I loved it. We should find a way to bring this back next year.
The Real #6) Dirty Mad Libs. The oozing gerbil nearly made me ill and for the rest you should just check out whenever someone podcasts it. It’ll be awesome.
7) “I’ll Be Your Edward”. Nerdpimp gave me an idea for the creepiest filk love song ever, partially inspired by the old Velvet Underground song I’ll Be Your Mirror but Twilight flavored. Ew.
8) Finally getting my copy of Spectyr that I bought at Borders signed by Philippa Ballantine. It’s taken a couple years. Not sure why. I even still have the Borders receipt.
9) Paul Fischer walking around looking somewhat relaxed. He told me he hadn’t had a relaxing time at balticon in forever so it was cool to see him there in the thick of things.
10) New Years. I like to use Balticon as a start in many ways. Tonight I’m dropping the first episode of the Horde via the Headcast in quite some time. Tomorrow the most traumatic chapters yet await listeners. I’m also now loaded with other projects that quite simply make the smorgasbord exciting for this year. Last year I was tired after Balticon, probably from my first year as a track head. This year I’m coming out with stories to burn. Hope you like the fire.
So, what meant something to you this year?