Years ago I was looking for a fun trip my son and I could take together. I discovered something called Dragon*Con—a fan conference held annually in Atlanta. It seemed perfect and it turned out to be amazing. For me, there was a writing workshop taught by A. C. Crispin. For my son, it had every kind of gaming.
I go back often for the writers workshops and the dark fantasy and SciFi lit tracks. Once I’m there an endless array of delights compete for my attention. There are fan tracks for most any SciFi franchise you might enjoy. There are tracks for science and hackers, music performances and of course the costumes. I don’t do the costumes myself, but I love to soak up the creative energy and imagination.
There are other conferences out there—all types. The biggest fan con is Comic Con in CA. There are tiny cons in cities everywhere. There are professional conferences, like the RWA National Conference I attended earlier this summer. They all have different things to offer, but they all have one thing in common—they bring together with similar interests and in my book that is pretty fabulous.
Dragon*Con is just a few weeks away and my son and I will be going together again after a few years where we couldn’t booth make it at the same time. I’m really looking forward to the trip.
Do you attend any conferences? If so, tell us about them…what do you recommend?
11 thoughts on “Do you Con?”
I haven’t gone to a themed conference like this, but I hope to in the future. My dream would be to attend one like the convention in Galaxy Quest. 🙂
They’re a lot of fun and you can probably find a small con close by. They’re everywhere. Though I can’t promise you an actual spaceship will drop in. 😉
I’ve never been to DC, but I’m going to go … one day. Really. I swear.
I’ve only gone to local cons so far. I’m hoping to change that next year. I can’t decide whether I’ll go to RWA or RT, but I plan to make at least one of them. And I’d love to go to DragonCon one day.
RWA and RT are booth good, but for different reasons. RT is the place to go to connect with fans. RWA is the place to network with the big name authors and the industry pros. There is also RomCon for connecting with fans. I’ve heard good things about it, but haven’t been.
For Urban Fantasy DragonCon is a good choice. The Dark Fantasy track is all about UF. Kenyon and Hamilton are regular special guests.
Hope to see you there one day!
How fun! I don’t go and I know I should. I missed the conference in Reno with George R.R. Martin – I think it’s this week!
Don’t feel too bad. It is really hard to actually interact with someone like Martin at a conference. The crowds around them are just too big. Much better to connect with up and coming authors and industry insiders. Plus at something like DC you get to laugh at the costumes and be awed by the art show.
As a SF, Fantasy and now horror writer, I definitely advise going to Cons that relate to your genre. They are great fun, great learning experiences (how to handle queries about your books and generally raise your profile) and most importantly, if you attend on a yearly basis — can generate sales and fan base. I started with CONDOR San Diego, a small very homey con — I learned how to do panels effectively. I also do panels LOSCON here in LA; it also is small but a good way to stay in touch with markets and the industry. I just did ORIGINS in Columbus this year — a kinder, gentler GENCON INDY, the latter, from which I just returned, is a major contender in the gaming, science fiction, fantasy and horror marketplace. It was huge and busy but I did sell sets of my series (so far) TAU4 and HAMMERSPACE for the first time and that was thrilling. Definitely recommend it
Hi VJ, Thanks for all the great con suggestions. Julia is a California author so hopefully she’ll see your comment. I’ve hear great things about ORIGINS. Neat that you got to put your books into the hands of fans. What about World Fantasy? Have you done that one? I’ve heard it is more for networking and not so much for fans.
I went to RWA this year, tho to be honest I enjoyed the conference more last year. I would’ve LOVED to go to Comic Con this year, but there was no way my boyfriend and I could’ve afforded it. Maybe next year!
I was bummed that I didn’t run into you in NY. I saw you tweet that you had been at Starbucks like minutes before I was there. I think that was the closest we got. LOL!
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