Saturday, September 19, 2009

FantasyCon 2009 - Hagelrat

Our darling, wonderful host here has allowed me to cross post my first ever Con experience from Un:Bound.
So here it is:

Sadly I could only escape from married life for the daytime today, not the whole weekend, maybe next year? If nothing else next year it's going in my diary early and I am staying late.

I arrived about 9:45 while things were still pretty quiet, wandered around the dealers room and the art gallery. I'd been instructed by the lovely Steve Savile to give the incredibly talented Daniele Serra a hug, isntead I bought a book of his art work and then lurked outside the artists panel till it finished to ambush him. I did eventually get to pass on the hug, but introduced myself first.
(to our left, Daniele in front of some of his incredible canvases)

I talked to various people in the dealers room and then went to a panel myself "Dead good, or just Dead" about the popularity of vamps in fiction. It covered largely the teen and romance elements, which is fair enough because frankly, that's where the market is at the moment. Panelists were Raven Dane, Steven Erikson, Adam Nevill , Sam Stone & Dave Howe from Telos. It was an interesting panel and there was some good discussion about how a countries climate can inform it's vampire myths.

After that I got to hang our with Mark Charan Newton, Tim Lebbon , Darren Turpin and Mark Chadbourn, just sitting around chatting. Seriously, I was in fangirl heaven! Everyone was soo nice and approachable and really open to chatting to a random blogger. It does feel very much like an industry event, with relatively few fans and bloggers who are not writers or in publishing, but it's small and freindly and i'd seriously recommend it, because unlike the big fan conventions authors at FantasyCon aren't being mobbed by 600 rabid fans so they are all relaxed and happy and willing to give you some time.

for lunch I joined some of the East Midlands Lit Network folks (who you will be hearing a lot more about on Un:Bound in the future) & Steve Tribe. It was lovely to slip away to a tiny cafe in Notts an dhang out and chat in the sunshine, and it was glorius sunshine.

(right, Tim Lebbon & Mark Newton looking serious and writerly)

After lunch I picked up a copy of The Mammoth book of Best New Horror and joined for queue to get Vincent Chong (Mihai, he's lovely and I mentioned i'd seen your interview) and some of the featured authors to sign it, including Ramsey Campbell (squeee, Ramsey Campbell knows my name, squee! My cool, it has abandoned me) and Christopher Fowler, who I had to snap on my phone for gloating rights with the friend who sent me one of his books in the first place. I also managed to push a bookmark on each and every one of them. mwhahahahha. That way when I stalk them online to demand interview they will at least have seen the name before.

I also got an ontro to Mark Yon of SFFWorld which was great, talking to a more experienced and established blogger about our little corner of the webiverse.

Anyway about 4:30 I sloped off into Notts to meet a badly neglected old friend for coffee and head home before my husband forgets what I look like, we've not really seen each other much this week. Apologies to all the people who helped me settle in just to have me slink off without even saying goodbye and especially to Danny Serra, I did look but couldn't see you and needed to head off. Ah but folks, what an awesomely brilliant day, some of you have to come with me next year!

( A slightly dark pic of Chris Fowler)

Ok and the swag, because I know you are dying to know. Wel.l because I joined the British Fantasy Society I get a couple fo free books, but because I paid by paypal and it's arsing around, they will follow on. Otherwise, there was a copy of Tom Lloyd's "Stormcaller" in the really cute canvas goody bag an dsome Hitchikers postcards I can't wait to use. I bought, "Different Skins" by Gary McMahon, Best New Horror anthology, "Illusions" by Daniele Serra, A nice boxed hardback of "Beyond each Blue Horizon" by Andrew Hook and "And god created zombies" by Andrew Hook (it was a good deal, I couldn't resist) I also grabbed any business cards, bookmarks and flyers I could, while leaving a trail of my own bookmarks behind me. Oh, and because I am a reviewer I got a copy of "Geas" by Jonathan Webb in return for promises of a review. Because it's my first Con and I am completely selfish, I am keeping it all mwahahahah. Well I might pass one or two books to other Un:Bound reviewers but I got my name signed on most of them.

I am officially blissed out folks.

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