Every year science fiction fans gather to celebrate one of the best genres out there. The genre where anything is possible. They come from all over the world – hence WorldCon. I love science fiction. So does the boyfriend. He’s been to WorldCons before but this was my first time. Having been to other conventions and conferences I thought I knew what to expect. But I’d never been to one of this size before and I learned a few things.
It was the largest gathering of nerds I’d ever seen. I love nerds, my boyfriend is a nerd, a lot of my friends are nerds and I like to think I’m a nerd. I learned that I’m an impostor. While I love the genre I’m not as well read in it as pretty much everyone else there. I also felt like the least intelligent person in the room for most of the panels I attended. When people start talking about axial tilt and atmospheric pressure my brain hurts.
I learned that while I thought I’m shy I’m far from it compared to most of the people at the convention. Many of them were obviously uncomfortable even being around other people let alone talking to them. And I’m talking about people being uncomfortable talking to people they actually know. It was painful to watch at times but it made me like them even more because they were still putting themselves out there because they love the genre.
I learned that other conventions and conferences could learn a few lessons from WorldCon. There were over 5,000 people there and everything, from my perspective, ran pretty smoothly. Besides the panels (and there were over a hundred panels) they had an art show, a con suite (free food and drinks), news sheets that went out every day, a dealers room where you could buy just about anything your little scifi heart desired. And all of that for less than what I’ve paid for other conferences and conventions. Not to mention the news sheets (the blue, green and orange sheets) and panel updates (the pink sheets) they had everyday.
And the parties. Convention goers are there for the parties. There were signage boards all over the convention to let people know when and where the parties were being held. Most of the parties were in the suites. The London 2014 party we went to was packed.
The most important part of the convention was the camaraderie, the feeling of belonging. No one cared how anyone else looked or what their sexual preferences were. All that mattered was the science fiction. Did I mention the games? They had video games!
They also had a masquerade where convention goers could show off their talent in costume design. On the Sunday night of the convention is the presentation of the Hugo Awards. I like the Hugos because works are nominated and voted on by fans. You cannot submit your work to be entered in the Hugos. Readers have to think it’s good enough for a nomination and nominate the work.
I intend to go to WorldCon in London 2014. And I hope to have something out by then that’s been nominated for a Hugo!
If you went to the convention this year please say hi in the comments. There were so many people there it’s hard to keep track of everyone and there are so many people I missed saying hello to.
Until next time…