I had a great time at World Con (the World Science Fiction Convention) this weekend. I only had a couple panels, and they went well, putting me at the same table with guys like Joe Haldeman (a legend) and Hugh Howey (who’s sold a stunning number of books on Amazon). I spent the vast majority of my time in bars and restaurants, catching up with friends, making new ones, and talking about books, books, books.
I stayed with my pal Ken Hite down at his place in Hyde Park and commuted back and forth. Fortunately, as Ken has mentioned before, our drinkadian rhythms match well, which meant I never had to ditch out on a party or a conversation early. The commute sadly also meant I left my phone in the cab on Friday night — entirely my fault — which proved to be the only damper on an otherwise excellent weekend.
I’d never been to a World Con before, but it felt like home right away. It seemed like I couldn’t move twenty feet sometimes without bumping into someone I knew, either in person or on Twitter. As I said then, it sometimes felt like the purpose of the con was to strip the “Twitter” qualifier off the phrase “Twitter friend” for so many of the people I met. I’d name them all, but it would seem like I was name dropping, and I’d be sure to leave someone dear to me off the list.
It started off strong with the Angry Robot bowling party, which had the highest density of fantastic people I wanted to meet that I’d ever seen. I had the highest bowling score at the end of the night, which really only tells you that writers and editors need to get out more. The surprise of the week, though, was running into Tobias Buckell at the Tor party the next evening, following the Random House party that had taken us on a three-hour boat ride up and down the Chicago River and out onto Lake Michigan too for a spectacular view of the city by night.
I don’t know when I’ll get back to a World Con again. I only finally went to this one because it was practically in my backyard. But I’m looking forward to the day it happens.
Meanwhile, hustle over to the blogs of superstars Chuck Wendig and Tobias Buckell, both of whom do a fantastic job of summing it all up. Tobias has a fantastic photo of the three of us at the Tor party that captures the weekend perfectly: three writers having a blast together and ready to take on the world.