Well, I'm back safe and sound from World Fantasy in Austin, TX. I had a great time – probably the most fun I've had at a convention to date. I think this is largely a function of having been to four of them now, plus quite a few other conventions and workshops. It's getting to the point where I know quite a few of the con-goers, which just makes it that much more enjoyable.
I enjoyed seeing several of my instructors from past workshops: Kelly Link, Holly Black, Joe & Gay Haldeman, Tim Powers, and Steve Gould. I wish I could have seen Laura Mixon, who was supposed to make it, but she had a change of plans just before the convention. I also met up with people from Clarion, the Roundtable Writers, Ink Slingers, OWW, WotF, Viable Paradise, OSC's Literary Bootcamp, CODEX, and the super seekrit SFs (you know who you are). It's funny how much I still miss Clarion. Seeing my classmates again only reminded me of how much I do miss them, or Clarion itself, or something.
There were lots of parties, including the Shimmer Pirate Party, which was all sorts of fun. I tried wine from Mary Robinette Kowal's husband's winery in Oregon (well, not his winery, but the one he made wine for), and it was very tasty. <<modified: Oops. I misunderstood. It is Mary's husband's winery. :/ >> Mary also brought caraway schnapps and lichen schnapps. Yes, you read that right. Lichen schnapps. I actually liked it quite a bit. The caraway schnapps? Not so much. It reminded me too much of drinking rye bread. Straight.
Jenny Rae Rappaport had a “coming out” party as well. Lori Perkins threw it for her for joining the agency and for her first sale. That was a lot of fun, too, especially listening to E's exploits in India. I met Edmund Schubert, editor for IGMS, who I knew online but hadn't yet met in person. Oh, and I met M. Thomas, of Lenox Avenue fame (which I used to slush for). ::waves to Edmund and M.:: My friend, Paul Genesse, had his debut in print in Furry Fantastic, and that was fun to see. Joshua Palmatier also had a pre-release version of his upcoming The Cracked Throne. Go, Joshua! My friend S.C. Butler's book, Reiffen's Choice also came out a few weeks back, and I picked that up and had him autograph it for me.
I went to the banquet this year, which was held on Saturday for the first time in a while (or ever). I had been to one before, in D.C. three years ago, but I had to leave partway through because it was on Sunday. This one was fun. I sat with (among others) Mary Robinette Kowal and John Ekkers and met Howard Morhaim and his assistant, Katie McKean, who were a lot of fun to talk to.
Hmm. What else? I went to some fun panels and some not-so-fun panels. I managed little sleep. I talked until my throat grew scratchy. All in all, it was a great time. I'm simultaneously glad to be home and sad that the convention is over. Ah well, there's always next year…