This last weekend I was the Guest of Honor at FantaSci in Raleigh-Durham. I was supposed to have gone in 2020, but like everything else fun the government could cancel, it got cancelled. On that note, it was really nice to be able to get together with a big crowd of friends and fans again.
Despite this only being the second ever FantaSci and them being forced to have a year long gap between them, the con did a good job. The volunteers were awesome. They obviously put in work beforehand, and when problems happened (problems always happen at cons!) they jumped on them and took care of the guests and fans. Major props to the FantaSci team.
This was one of those “relax cons” where it’s a not a massive mob of thousands of people rushing around. It was a few hundred people in a hotel, going to panels and events, and then hanging out with friends and peers. And after a year of bullshit, that was really nice. Just good folks having a good time. Lots of wrongfans having wrongfun.
Our flight got in super late on Thursday (actually, Friday morning I suppose). Then Friday and Saturday were panels and events for both of us. I ran a game of Gritty Cop Show one night for charity (they auctioned off seats at the table) and that was fun. Sunday was the “MHI Anniversary Brunch” slash “Larry and Bridget Show” because when this was originally scheduled for 2020 the con fell on our anniversary.
The Larry and Bridget show consists of us rambling about all sorts of topics while people ask us all sorts of questions. Luckily, Bridget is charming and interesting. 😀
It was nice to see a bunch of writer friends. There’s too many to try and list them all, but this was the first time I’ve got to see Jason Cordova in person since we decided to write Monster Hunter Memoirs: Fever together, and it was good to go over some of that stuff in person. David and Sharon Weber were there, and they’re some of our favorite people on Earth. I always love seeing Toni, though I only got to talk to her for like twenty minutes because we both had to get to events.
On that note, Toni did a Baen Roadshow (where she has the authors talk about our upcoming or just released books while she goes through a slide show of the covers) and I got to see the cover for my upcoming collaboration with Steve Diamond for the first time. That’s tomorrow’s blog post!
Also during that I asked Toni if I could talk about something else really cool, she gave me permission and I mentioned a new TV deal (contracts are in the mail!). Except I just realized before I blab about that on the internet, I should probably wait for her official announcement before posting more. But stay tuned, it’s really awesome news.
Saturday night Bridget and I were the guests at the Chris Kennedy Publishing dinner for the Four Horsemen Universe. Going in, I just thought it was just a dinner. I didn’t realize it was an elaborate in-universe mess hall ceremony, complete with Grog Bowl of punishment (but thankfully in addition to the horrific swill mixture of ten different kinds of booze, there was another container of non-alcoholic and sugar free swill for the non-drinkers and to not accidentally kill any of the diabetics! That was fun. They’re a good bunch.
Bridget was on a Care and Feeding of Authors panel (meaning author spouses tell stories about the whole wacky author lifestyle thing, and these panels have become a staple at a lot of cons because they tend to be really funny as the wives and husbands unload all the dirty secrets about how goofy their writer spouses are). Some authors are banned from being in the room during this (cough, David Weber, cough) but I usually just hide in the back quietly… Until Bridget dropped some truth bombs that made me snort laugh while everybody in the room watched me blush with embarrassment. 😀 (Mike Massa was in there too while his wife talked about him but he was like a ninja so nobody noticed him).
However, the goofiest thing that happened all weekend was to poor Dave Butler, but that is his story to tell. 😀 There are some really weird fans out there. Luckily, not at the con. Those people were great. This weirdo was one of the participants in a thing that Dave live-streamed on Zoom. Let’s just say that some people must really be into six foot eight mustached folk singers playing the guitar.
We flew home yesterday, and even though I’ve got a ton of work to do, as soon as we got home I took a four hour nap.
I really had a good time at FantaSci and will go back.