Sunday, September 28, 2014

IMAGINARIUM Writers Convention - Post Convention Commentary

September 23, 2014

Three words, four numbers, and some exclamation points sum it up: 


I arrived in Louisville, Kentucky about 2pm on Friday, September 19. Originally parked my car wa-aay far away from where the exhibit hall. Luckily was smart enough to just take my computer bag with me, not try to cart my tote and boxes across the vast complex which was the Crowne Plaza.

I procured my Guest Badge and met Susan Roddey and some of the Event Staff (more folks, come to find out, were part of the SSP family) and stepped into the exhibit hall.

Placed me next to the fire extinguisher in case I spontaneously combusted.

I sweat like I'd just stepped under Niagara Falls.

IMAGINARIUM was/is big for me. It was the first big convention I had attended in, hmmm, twenty years. It is the first big convention I had attended where I had something to sell, ie, a book. It was the first big convention in which I would have my own table space to put my stuff up and try to promote and sell. It was the first time meeting, in person, my Seventh Star Press publisher and publishing family and SSP authors (many of whom are books ahead of me in written work available). I knew a few people that were attending the convention, like 2 or 3, from years ago, but 99.8% of the rest were all new. Well, I had "met" them on Facebook.

I was nervous, thus the sweat shower.

Me and my publisher and Imaginarium Director, Stephen Zimmer. And my editor, Rodney Carlstrom.

BUT once I got situated between the wonderful Michael West and the marvelous Jen Mulvihill, and after being greeted warmly by my publisher and some of the other "family members"...all was good. In fact, by weekend end, I pretty much felt like I'd known these people all along. That is how great EVERYONE was at the convention.

A community of artists who enjoyed their craft, gave a shit, were human, and enjoyed the company of their brothers and sisters of the trade.

I sat in a panel, as an audience member, after meeting my current TRANSPORT editor, Rodney Carlstrom, and listened to he and the others discuss STEAMPUNK TODAY. he and the rest of the panelists knew there stuff. Experts in the field.

I sat in four panels as an actual panelist, including one as a moderator.

Before I walked onto the whole scene I thought I'd be too nervous to speak, would not know what to say or how to join in the conversation, or talk like a nervous babbling baboon, BUT, by the time it was my time to sit down with the other artists and audience, because of the warmth already spread around by the IMAGINARIUM people (event staff, publisher, other writers, etc.) I felt very comfortable in these groups and had quite a bit of fun.

Saturday, September 20, was my big full day of the convention. I was part of a panel discussion on Cover (Art) Lovin' and, later, The Zombie Horde. I also attended a workshop instructed by Tim Waggoner, which was awesome, and the guy (an established author as well as writing instructor) was a true gent and interesting.

When I wasn't attending a panel or workshop I was hanging out at my little book/table display. Often times, I would see someone I wanted to say HELLO to and meander off to another table.

So much to do. So many people to see/meet.

The bonus: EVERYONE was very friendly, cordial. I didn't meet anyone who was a stuffed shirt, a person with nose turned up, acting mightier than thou, better than you, a true artiste frowning on the other dredges of the Craft. Everyone I met was eager to say hello, talk a bit, chuckle or provide serious feedback.


Saturday evening there was a masquerade ball/convention after-party. People hung out. More discussions. More laughter. More camaraderie.


Sunday, I did (2) panels: LONE HERO VS HEROIC GROUP and INTO THE WASTELAND (where the conversation fell on the subject of zombies again). It was all good though. Cool panelists. Cool discussions. Some laughs.

I packed things up and left the area around 1pm, and headed back north.

I write this little blog post several days after the convention, and can say, I can't wait to go to IMAGINARIUM 2015.


September 29, 2014

It has been a week since IMAGINARIUM. It still makes me excited thinking about the experience, the people I met, the discussions, the fun, the being involved in something bigger than me, in being involved in this huge group of story-tellers, tale weavers.

Again, I thank Stephen Zimmer, Susan Roddey and the entire crew who helped put this thing together and make it happen.

See you next year.

No comments:

Post a Comment