Attended my first convention in Australia and it was full of fabulousness.
NOVEMBER 10, 2012 – SATURDAY – Full Supanova>> convention day. Bus took us to the fairgrounds, a bit of time in the green room, then down to the Penguin booth. Pretty much as soon as she sat down, Rachel Caine>> had people coming by asking her for autographs and personalized books. Most already knew her, some were new to her work, and at least two people bought the “Rachel Caine” package of books which included the 13 Morganville Vampires books, the 2 Revivalist books, and the 4 Outcast Season books. Her Weather Warden books aren’t licensed for Australia yet unfortunately because we had a few people ask for them. The “100% Sparkle-Free Vampires” sign also brought some people over.
I did some general video filming of the con and Rachel signing books and her afternoon talk from the stage. Learned enough about the pricing to be of some help selling stuff as well, as the Penguin booth was around 6 tables worth of stuff, and if Floss was busy at one end, I could (somewhat) take care of the other end. Melina Marchetta>>was also at the table to sign, and it was fun talking with her.
Walked the exhibit hall, avoided buying a lot of stuff (which was made somewhat easier by the fact the DVDs are in a different region 😉 ), then fell prey to original art by Howard Chaykin>>, a Shane Davis>> sketchbook, and novels by The Joe Abercrombie>> and Trudi Canavan>>. And that poster tube I debated bringing and then decided not to … yeah, going to have to buy one to get the art home safely.
Supanova is a really nice convention and even though parts of the fairgrounds were under construction, the venues I saw were nicely set up and people were having a good time. The rain was never pouring and I’m not cursed or bad enough to melt, so going between buildings wasn’t a big deal. Quite a lot of cosplay/costumes across comics, movies, TV, and anime. Final attendance at this one was 27,100. The smaller local cons I attend are under 1k. DragonCon was around 40k when I attended in 2010, so Supanova was a nice middle ground with a constant flow of people coming by the booth but not the hall-choked insanity of something like New York Comic Con (over 100k) or San Diego Comic Con (over 140k).
At the end of the day, the bus took us back to the hotel. Had some dinner then dressed for the cocktail party – venue for fans who have paid a certain level of ticket to meet and talk with the guests who choose to attend. Driven close to the venue, then walked down an alley and around a dumpster to the bar entrance. It was a long, narrow space and most of the other attendees (staff and fans) had already arrived, I got a Coke from the bar and walked around a bit with Rachel, then headed to the back to hang out with Howard and the comic guys, implementing Tip #2 of How To Survive Cocktail Parties For Introverts: Find an extrovert you like and hang out at their side. You will be entertained, they will have an attentive audience, and time will go by at an accelerated rate. Alison Goodman>> came with her hair up in such a great outfit I didn’t recognize her initially. Eventually the guys moved on to mingle but I liked my couch seat and remained, people watching. The celebrity guests did a great job moving around and talking with people. Even Felicia Day>> showed up and stayed for a while, even though she’d just flown in and had worked an all-nighter the day before. Nelsan Ellis>> sat on the edge of the couch and we talked for a bit. Almost didn’t know it was him under the cap and dark sunglasses. That conversation made coming to the cocktail party worth it.
Back on the bus after about an hour, then to the hotel and bed. Assume most of the extreme tiredness is due to being extroverted all day, although some of it may be jetlag. Doesn’t matter, the Sofitel has a nice king sized bed.
NOVEMBER 11, 2012 – SUNDAY – Another convention day. Booth time, some time to wander, lunch and afternoon tea breaks, video tape Rachel on stage giving a world-exclusive reading from the fourteenth Morganville Vampires novel which her editor hasn’t even seen because it’s still being written. That’s the deadline she’s getting up at 3-4 am every day to put words toward before going to spend a full day at the con. People who say they “don’t have time to write” have an excuse, not a reason.
Talked with Tristan Jones>>, very cool guy, bought a poster of his cover for Hoax Hunters #2>> and said I’ll pledge and promote his Pozible project Sebastian Hawks>> when I get back to the US (have done online money stuff from outside the US before and the bank/Paypal can get twitchy and hold my account “for my security” which would be less than helpful over the next week-plus). Pozible is just like Kickstarter in that the money is not taken unless the project gets funded, and even though you don’t have to be in Australia to pledge, Tristan said they were hearing that people in the US would see that it was AU-based and not pledge because they thought they couldn’t.
Thanks to last night’s conversation with Nelsan, I was able to introduce him to Rachel (whose is a huge fan of True Blood) during on of our times in the green room. People’s eyes really do get wide when they are surprised. 😉
Ineke wanted to have dinner with the authors, so Rachel, me, Trudi, Kylie Chan>> and her daughter and Joe met in the lobby and began a “short walk” to a restaurant Kylie recommended. Different people have different definitions of “short walk” and this turned out to be longer than mine. Then it turns out the place is closed, so we go to a Korean BBQ place. Others did the cook-your-own style platters of meat, I went with pork dumplings as I really wasn’t hungry by this point in the day but needed to eat something. After the meal, Joe and Trudi were up for walking back to the hotel which proves, yet again, their strong constitutions, Kylie and her daughter went off to their car, and Rachel and I cabbed back.
Decided to sleep before packing, as the flight to Sydney isn’t until tomorrow just after noon.
Next stop … Sydney