Mar 12 2010

Links links links

Published by at 8:58 am under conventions,follow the link chain,it's science!

Over 100 years of Popular Science issues have been digitized and made available for free on the internet!

A good article for anyone interested in the cutting edge of neuroscience and how it connects to story.

And I’m thinking about attending the World Fantasy Convention this year in Columbus, Ohio. I have extended family living in a suburb of Columbus, and it seems like it would be fun to have the DreamCafĂ© and my mom and brother along for the trip. With this many months to plan it, we might even make it happen! Any feedback from the readers on this convention, if you’ve previously attended?

2 responses so far

2 Responses to “Links links links”

  1. Pamela Deanon 12 Mar 2010 at 2:35 pm

    Steve can give you an earful, as you probably know.

    It’s a weird blend of wonderful and exasperating. It’s a very snooty convention, modelled after professional conventions where most attendees are sent by large rich corporations and paid for, even though writers are not large rich corporations and have trouble affording it. It frowns on hall costumes and a lot of other harmless fannish fun. It’s usually held in expensive hotels surrounded by expensive restaurants.

    However, huge numbers of writers, agents, editors, artists, and publishers generally turn up, and the sparks coming off all those encounters are difficult to reproduce elsewhere. The bulk of the attendees are not snooty, but very welcoming, if you can find them — some committees don’t really bother to provide any kind of gathering space, assuming everyone will be in the bar buying overpriced drinks.

    The programming can be splendid or very lackluster indeed; it depends on the individual committee. The degree of hospitality offered to attendees also depends on the committee. The convention is run for profit, and I’ve been to several where all the money simply seemed to vanish into the committees’ pockets (well, either that or they got a really lousy deal with the hotel), while others provide many cool and interesting events and food for the actual attendees.

    For me, it’s really my fellow writers and fans, and some of the editors, that make the convention. However, I haven’t attended one since the last one in Minneapolis, which was in 2002, I think, maybe 2003. Minneapolis did it up right and proper by using the Minicon hotel, which is nice enough but not a luxury venue, and providing three full meals for all attendees in the con suite, so that if you couldn’t afford the local restaurants or a taxi and didn’t have a car, you wouldn’t starve.

    Anyway, that’s enough maundering on my part.

    Pamela

  2. Reesaon 12 Mar 2010 at 11:45 pm

    @Pamela – Thanks for the feedback! Steve has mentioned some things, one of them being that regardless of his opinion of it, he thinks it would probably be a good idea for me to attend a few of the bigger ones such as WFC. I figured it didn’t hurt to hear what other people had to say about the convention. Hopefully if I decide to go there will be some good programming, I do enjoy attending panels at conventions.