So, Thursday. I took the train out to meet up with my friend barbarienne, who was driving; we went through NYC to pick up swimtech and from there took a leisurely route through Connecticut because there is Truly Awesome Ice Cream there at a little stand near the house of friends of ours. After the ice cream, we stopped at their house and saw them and their adorable baby, whom I hadn't met before. Of course, once back on the road, we got stuck in traffic a short distance from the hotel...I think at least once every time I've been in a car to Readercon, there is at least one traffic jam. But we made it at a not-too-late hour, ran into various friends already arrived, had a delicious (expensive) meal in the hotel's fancy restaurant, and so to bed.
Friday I had no programming whatsoever! Well, except for "Meet the ProSe." This is amazing and exciting! I shared a long breakfast with Steve Berman (mroctober), whom I hadn't seen in far too long, and an ever-changing group that eventually included slithytove, whom I also hadn't seen in far too long. And I re-met supertailz and I swear next time I will recognize her.
I registered and then proceeded to wander around running into people I knew and chatting with them. This took quite a while, and my memory has blurred--it was a bit overwhelming, actually. I do remember seeing Ella Drake, though I got to chat more with her on Saturday. Also nineweaving, gaudior, and rushthatspeaks. It was awesome to see madrobins for the first time in forever (or four years, maybe?) And I kept running into people from Philadelphia, but I can see them at home! And frequently do! In the afternoon, I went to the gym and did a few weights and some cardio while listening to Bach on my headphones, then attended a panel, "The Dissonant Power of Alternative Voicing." I was really interested in the topic, but my brain was not really cooperating. Also, it was very dry in the hotel so I left once the questions began, to get some water. (Actually, this was likely an ominous first sign of my upcoming sore throat.)
I also went to "A Child's Garden of True Norwegian Black Metal" presented by Elizabeth Hand. That was awesome.
In the evening, my roomie filomancer and her son The Talkative One arrived, and then pointoforigin. I rejoiced. Both of them used to live in my area but have moved far, far away.
My quote for Meet the Prose was "Give my Lady Laycock a knock and your eyes'll cross until you see your own nancy," which occasioned much hilarity, as you might imagine.
Saturday was my big programming day. I was on four panels, of which I moderated three, and had a kaffeeklatsch.
I slept horribly because I was so thirsty, so was not in the best of moods when I attempted to get breakfast on Saturday morning. It was just before nine a.m., and I was moderating my first panel at ten a.m.. I was told there was a 45-minute wait for a table. For the buffet. When there were empty tables everywhere. I smothered my hungry, coffee-deprived rage and hunted about for friends with tables. Luckily, I soon spied Gardner Dozois and Susan Caspar and a friend of theirs, and not only got to eat, but got some useful input for my panel that night.
The whole breakfast thing is the only thing I don't like about that hotel. The food is excellent. The handling of customer traffic, not so much. [/end whining]
I would talk about my panels, but I find it impossible to make notes on them as they progress. I moderated two in a row on Saturday morning, each discussing an aspect of Paranormal Romance and/or Urban Fantasy. I'm told both went well, and generated some ideas for future panels, which is always a plus. I had an hour break, then my kaffeeklatsch, at which I had an enjoyable chat with Ella Drake and her husband, then another hour break before the sole panel I wasn't moderating.
I was then free until 9 pm! Some of my workshop pals and I (slithytove, filomancer and pointoforigin) went out for Korean barbecue and discussed filomancer's work in progress as well as slithytove's agent search.
Remember the virus? I was completely wiped out after dinner, but still had one more panel to moderate. I went to the bar and got some ice cream with barbarienne, swimtech, and Marco Palmieri, whom I'd just met that day. When they headed off to Kirk Poland, I chatted a little with Tom Purdom and downed a couple of painkillers for my throat. Then the panel, which I think went pretty well, because of great input from both panelists and audience.
Sunday, I moderated one final 10 a.m. panel, on World War One. It was funny seeing how subdued the panelists were beforehand, as compared to Saturday! We were all most exhausted, but managed to accomplish the panel's purpose, which was to come up with targeted WWI-related panel ideas for next year.
Had lunch with, again, a series of folks including apis_mellifera, kouredios, and stealthmuffin.
I hung around until late afternoon before my ride departed, and by then was in such a fog of fatigue that it was all very dreamlike. I still hadn't realized I was actually sick, even though my throat was really hurting. I hope I didn't infect anyone. Stupid viruses. Maybe we need a panel next year, about viruses as characters in spec fic....