WFC

Oct. 27th, 2011 12:28 am
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This year's hotel is a maze-- it took me longer to find the hotel lobby than it did to drive from airport to hotel. With the way the buildings are spread out, it's going to be one of those years where I keep missing people because there's no central gathering spot.

First hotel room they checked me into was in a high traffic spot, adjacent to the bar that has been designated as the late night spot. I returned to lobby and helpful clerk found me a room in a quieter section. I've already trashed the place, so when roomie arrives tomorrow he'll have to fight to find space for his things :-D

Spent today doing family stuff in advance of the con. Adjusting to Pacific time zone.... at this point I've been awake for 25 hours. It's probably a good time to think about sleep.
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[livejournal.com profile] fireun brought a camera to WFC and documented some (but fortunately not all) of the hijinks that occurred. I think my favorites are the panel photos-- Manic!Patricia is manic, while Serious!Joshua looks every inch the professor.

Photos from WFC under the cut )
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Had a great time at WFC. On the professional side, I had a productive meeting with my agent, the incomparable Jennifer Jackson, as well as long discussions on careers and the state of the industry with fellow pros. Also acquitted myself ably on the Sword & Sorcery panel, where we declared that "The Coolest Thing Ever!" was key to the enjoyment of these tales.

Lack of sleep made me slightly more manic than usual, and as always there's a delicate balance between Patricia-the-author, and Patricia-the-reader/fan. Patricia-the-author was interested in hearing how Michelle Sagara balanced writing long running series for multiple publishers. Patricia-the-fan heard that the new Cast novel was finished, and wanted to know, hypothetically of course, if someone happened to steal Michelle's laptop if the new novel would be on there. Also, I may have frightened Rachel Neumeier by coming up to her in the dealer's room and saying "I just have to tell you that your griffins are absolutely cool, and I can't wait until the third book comes out." I'm pretty sure I remembered to introduce myself after that remark, but not positive.

Other highlights include seeing S.C. Butler, Susan Jett, and baby Henry, who is the most adorable (and calm!) baby ever. And it was lovely to finally meet Kari Sperring and Phil Nanson.

We had a quorum of Ur-Bar authors at the mass autographing on Friday night, and sat together to ensure maximum misbehavior.

Joshua Palmatier continued to earn the title of best roommate/con-friend ever, and we had fun introducing first-timers April and Tracy. Alas there were many folks there that I didn't get to spend as much time with as I would have liked, including some I saw only to wave at as we passed each other in the halls.

Sunday morning came all too soon, and bright and early we piled into the car for the long drive back to Binghamton. We arrived back home with limbs & braincases intact, so I'm declaring this con a success.

Looking forward to next year in San Diego!
pbray: (Default)
Had a great time at WFC. On the professional side, I had a productive meeting with my agent, the incomparable [livejournal.com profile] arcaedia, as well as long discussions on careers and the state of the industry with fellow pros. Also acquitted myself ably on the Sword & Sorcery panel, where we declared that "The Coolest Thing Ever!" was key to the enjoyment of these tales.

Lack of sleep made me slightly more manic than usual, and as always there's a delicate balance between Patricia-the-author, and Patricia-the-reader/fan. Patricia-the-author was interested in hearing how [livejournal.com profile] msagara balanced writing long running series for multiple publishers. Patricia-the-fan heard that the new Cast novel was finished, and wanted to know, hypothetically of course, if someone happened to steal Michelle's laptop if the new novel would be on there. Also, I may have frightened Rachel Neumeier by coming up to her in the dealer's room and saying "I just have to tell you that your griffins are absolutely cool, and I can't wait until the third book comes out." I'm pretty sure I remembered to introduce myself after that remark, but not positive.

Other highlights include seeing [livejournal.com profile] scbutler, [livejournal.com profile] susanjett and baby Henry, who is the most adorable (and calm!) baby ever. And it was lovely to finally meet [livejournal.com profile] la_marquise_de_ and Phil Nanson.

We had a quorum of Ur-Bar authors at the mass autographing on Friday night, and sat together to ensure maximum misbehavior.

[livejournal.com profile] jpsorrow continued to earn the title of best roommate/con-friend ever, and we had fun introducing first-timers [livejournal.com profile] fireun and [livejournal.com profile] teshilaire around. Alas there were many folks there that I didn't get to spend as much time with as I would have liked, including some I saw only to wave at as we passed each other in the halls.

Sunday morning came all too soon, and bright and early we piled into the car for the long drive back to Binghamton. We arrived back home with limbs & braincases intact, so I'm declaring this con a success.

Looking forward to next year in San Diego!
pbray: (ur-bar)
Yesterday's drive to Columbus was enlivened by Tracy's contribution of Dunkin munchkins, ensuring a constant sugar high. Photos may exist of individuals begging for donut treats, but I'm hoping to swipe that SIM card before any of the photos hit the web.

With four authors in the car, much hilarity ensued, including our attempts to craft the perfect elevator pitch-- "She sucks, he bites, together they fight crime." Now one of us must write the story of the dynamic vampire & werewolf duo.

After arriving at hotel and registering, we ran into Sam Butler, his wife Susan, and baby Henry (adorable!) and then fellow Ur-Bar author Ian Tregillis. Eventually we headed over to a brewpub for dinner, since I'd been begging for beer for about 400 miles of the drive. (99 bottles of beer on the wall, 99 bottles for me...) Then it was back to the hotel where we imposed on Sam and Susan in order to catch the finale of Project Runway, since the Hyatt not only charges for wi-fi but also doesn't get that channel. By the time Runway was over, I was ready to crash, having been up since 5AM.

Our room location (adjacent to elevator banks) ensured that there was no need for an alarm to wake us this morning, but a liberal application of caffeine is helping. Planning to pace myself today, so I can hit the parties later on. Next up is a stop at the dealer's room, and then whatever other mischief I can get up to.
pbray: (ur-bar)
Step 1- Confirm meetup arrangements with agent, etc.
Step 2- Print off driving directions
Step 3- Document locations and menus for the three nearby brewpubs (Gordon Biersch, Barley's Brewing and Elevator Brewery), so can begin planning my attack. Given that they aren't open for breakfast, this gives me 5 meals plus 2 happy hours, which should be sufficient.

Deciding which clothes to wear, packing, etc, can all be left for the last minute. But beer is important!
pbray: (ur-bar)
Planning for WFC has consisted of confirming registration, hotel room arrangements, driving route, and figuring out where to eat/drink. I note with pleasure that there is a microbrewery less than 1/2 mile from our hotel offering up German style beers.

Now I just need to figure out a strategy for meeting up with everyone. Plan A is to make arrangements ahead of time and swap cell phone numbers. Plan B is to arrive on Thursday, seize the spot in the hotel bar that gives me the best view of passersby, and not leave until Sunday.
pbray: (Zombie)
[livejournal.com profile] jpsorrow has posted pictures from the Zombies Need Brains party here.
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I had ambitions of doing a full-fledged con report, but that's not going to happen this week. Instead I'm desperately longing for a Harry Potter style time-turner, so I can cram in everything that I need to get done this week, including:

- The normal chaos at the day job of monthly close & forecast cycle, where I'm doing my own work plus covering for a colleague who is out ill
- Studying for next Monday's exam in my Criminal Investigations class
- Finalizing revisions for THE FINAL SACRIFICE and mailing it off to Bantam

Instead just a few thoughts--

WFC this year in Saratoga Springs is my favorite WFC so far, mostly because so many of my friends were there and I got to meet lots of lovely new people. The hotel was only average, but Saratoga Springs was a great venue with many cool restaurants, and I had only one bad meal.

The ZOMBIES NEED BRAINS party was a huge success, and well worth all the effort that we'd put in to it. People kept coming up to me all weekend telling me that they'd had a great time. Surprisingly we had leftover beer and soda but the bottled water ran out shortly after midnight.

The lizard keychains/bottle openers became the must-have souvenir of the con. I gave out several dozen during the Zombies party, an equal number during Friday's autographing, and then spent the rest of the weekend being hunted down by collectors, until I gave out the last ones at the banquet. No worries though, I've just ordered more so I'll have them for cons next year.

One of the personal highlights of the con was the number of people who came up to me to tell me how much they loved the DEVLIN books, including one person who'd been chatting with me for twenty minutes, then suddenly said "Oh my god, I knew your name was familiar. You wrote the Devlin books didn't you? I LOVE those books." As someone who turns into a fangirl when face to face with her own favorite authors, it's a tad humbling to realize that my books can inspire a similar reaction in others.

For the business side, had meetings with both my editor and agent, and numerous discussions with fellow writers about the state of the industry and our careers. Met a few folks who work on the television/Hollywood side of the business, who offer a very different perspective on the writing life.

Taking advantage of the fact that I had an SUV with plenty of cargo space for the return trip home, I bought far more books in the dealer's room than I'll ever have time to read. But these were all so new and shiny, how could I resist?

Finally, I'm not going to do a shout out, since I'd surely forget someone. Instead a general wave in the direction of all the folks that I met at WFC, and a hope that you had as great a time as I did.
pbray: (Zombie)
Returned from WFC last night where I had a great time. It was the usual WFC chaos--managed to catch up with many people and made new friends, but there were also folks that I wanted to spend time with and somehow never managed to hook up with, other than to wave at them in passing.

Returned to massive amounts of work for the day job, not to mention classwork and oh, yes, the revisions for THE FINAL SACRIFICE are due within the week. Will post more on WFC later, when I can catch my breath.
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You've probably heard me talking about this already, but if you're reading this and you're going to World Fantasy this year in Saratoga, you're invited to come to the ZOMBIES NEED BRAINS party on Thursday night. It will be held at the Saratoga Hotel in suite 558, starting after the ice cream social. The zombie hosts are myself, S.C. Butler, Barbara Campbell, Jennifer Dunne, C.E. Murphy and Joshua Palmatier. We'll be serving microbrews, hard cider, gourmet cookies, sodas and assorted other snacks. (On a related topic, my living room is currently filled with cases of beer and cider.)

Other schedule notes--

Friday night is, of course the mass autographing, where I'll be handing out lizards and scribbling my autograph on any object presented to me.

For those who are awake Sunday morning at 10:00, I'll be on a panel entitled The Ghostly Lore of New York State. Is this area uniquely haunted? with panelists Betty Ballantine, Patricia Bray, Rick Wilber, Mason Winfield. Program ops hasn't listed a moderator for this one yet, but it's related to an idea that I'd suggested, so not sure if I'll need to lead this or someone else has been assigned. In any case it should be fun, just as long as we all remember to change our watches since Daylight Savings time ends Saturday night....

And if you arrive on Thursday and are looking for something to do, why not check out one of the readings? At 3:30 PM S.C. (Sam) Butler is first up at bat, while at 9:30 PM Kate (Anne) Brallier promises whales and harpooning. (Names listed in pocket program do not match the names on book spines, thus helpful aliases included.)

Looking forward to seeing everyone there!
pbray: (TFB)
A gross of lizards are in the hands of UPS, and should arrive before I leave for World Fantasy next week.*

Other preparations continue apace. I have meetings scheduled with my editor and agent, double-checked the hotel reservation, and confirmed my panel assignment. Arrangements for the ZOMBIES NEED BRAINS party are well in hand, and I'm in the process of negotiating just how often I'll have to break away from the con to check in with the day job. Now all I have to do is figure out what I'm wearing, and start packing this weekend.

*Most authors will blog about various writing topics, for instance how to write a query letter, or the challenges of first person POV. But few are willing to discuss the truly important topics, such as how to find a good source for lizards when your former supplier dries up. Fortunately you can trust me to reveal all.
pbray: (Zombie)
My friends and I are all under various time crunches and need to stay focused on our writing. So naturally we're exchanging multiple e-mails a day about hosting a party at this year's WFC. It's tentatively entitled the "Zombies Need Brains" party.

Stay tuned for details.

WFC Photo

Nov. 9th, 2006 03:55 pm
pbray: (Lizard)
It was all chocolate and lizards at the autographing session.

WFC Report

Nov. 5th, 2006 07:24 pm
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Well I made it back home. I'm a tad sleep-deprived with a touch of con-crud, and more books to add to the ever growing TBR stack. So pretty much status quo for WFC.

WFC was interesting this year. I wasn't inspired by the programming--for me it was all about being with the tribe. Met up with old friends, made new ones, got to meet people I've gotten to know over cyberspace, and had the opportunity to talk business with both my editor and my agent.

I'm far too brain dead to do a shout out to everyone I met, so please just accept a general wave. Now it's time to toddle off, unpack the suitcase, and get psyched for a busy week.
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Logging in from the road--I spent 8 hours at my house, of which 6 were sleeping. Now on a business trip for the day job. I left behind a lizard infested house, and can only hope they aren't breeding in my absence.

A few addendums to my earlier WFC coverage. First, I forgot to thank my fellow panelists for "A Maze Demands A Minotaur", Carol Berg, David D. Levine, Michael Shea, and Walter Jon Williams, who were lively, opinionated (in the best way) and demonstrated enthusiasm for both monsters and architecture.

Second, my one regret is that I didn't make it to the local Irish bar, which I hear is quite good. Hard to believe I visited a city and didn't make it to the Irish bar, although I did dine out on more exotic fare, including two Nepalese/Himalayan restaurants. But if I ever make it out to Wiscon, I know where I'm heading first.

Finally, in the weird things column, normally I'm as psychic as a brick, but when I was walking around Madison on Thursday morning, I had the feeling that there was someone of power buried on the grounds of the state capitol building. I don't get those types of feelings, and since this was 11AM on a bright, sunny day, it seemed doubly odd. Saturday night, during the monster panel, I threw out the question of what types of creatures would live in Madison to the panelists, and then mentioned my own impression of what was under the state capitol. A member of the audience then raised her hand to inform me of the local belief that the state capitol was built on the site of a Native American burial mound. Creepy!
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Back from the World Fantasy Convention in Madison. I had a great time--met lots of interesting people, caught up with old friends, met e-friends in person, hung out with folks who share my passions, had too much to eat, drink, and too many late nights. In short, it was a perfect weekend.

I described WFC to someone as a tribal gathering, but it's more than that. It's part corporate board meeting where we hear the state of the business, part family reunion where we see people we haven't seen for years, or finally get to meet that new cousin/in-law we've all been hearing about, and part college reunion where you catch up with the class of 2002 and see how everyone is doing.

More WFC details here )

Returned home, and found that my house was Infested by lizards )
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A quick wave from WFC, as I borrow one of the hotel computers. Having a great time--meeting lots of interesting folks and enjoying the chance to catch up with friends and meet e-friends in person.

Only drawback is that I'm staying up late, but continuing to wake up on east coast, pre-"fall back" time. Came down for breakfast this morning and there were only two other people in the entire restaurant :-)

The "bathroom" panel on Thursday was good, and the reading yesterday went very well. The lizards were a huge hit at the autographing. A few meetings for me today and then after the panel tonight I can relax.

Now off to see who else is moving at this early hour and then raid the dealer's room so I can fill the empty spaces in my luggage with books.

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