Dragon*Con, one of the largest SF&F fantasy conventions going, if not the largest, with around 40,000 fans that gather in a host of hotels in downtown Atlanta every Labor Day weekend. I've attended the past three years in a row, and Dragon*Con has become a highlight of my year. What makes it such a rewarding show for me is a) the incredible access to readers and fans of all ages and b) the large numbers of Pyr authors and personnel on hand. This year we were joined by our authors James Enge, Clay & Susan Griffith, Erin Hoffman, Andrew P. Mayer, Ari Marmell, Mike Resnick, Jon Sprunk, and Sam Sykes, as well as my editorial assistant Rene Sears, VP of Marketing/Director of Publicity Jill Maxick, e-Initiative Coordinator Lynn Pasquale, and freelance copyeditor Gabrielle Harbowy.
I drove down with Rene on Thursday, and the two of us, together with Clay and Susan Griffith, began unpacking the 60 something boxes and assembling the Pyr booth. Putting up the wireframe booth and then assembling it is like a giant jigsaw puzzle and after having done this twice before, it's actually becoming fun. Lynn and Jill arrived a few hours later to help, and set about building the huge display of sampler books. Right after they finished, a director arrived to inform us that we'd built the stack outside the lines marked by white tape that delineated the confines of our space.
Max Lager's. What makes this show for me is friends. I love the work hard/play hard vibe, so after getting everything set up for Friday's opening, we had a *very* late night at Max's as our reward. Followed by the bar High Velocity in the Marriott.
Writing Excuses with Dan Wells, Mary Robinette Kowal, and Howard Taylor. I also gave an interview to George Holochwost of Mtv Geek!. The result is his very generous article "A Visit with Pyr Books." Then it was back to Max's Larger and (subsequently) High Velocity.
The Greyfriar (Vampire Empire, Book 1). James is reading for the forthcoming audiobook, a fact that has created quite a bit of buzz.
I had a 10pm sword & sorcery themed panel "Blood & Iron" that evening, which was seriously fun despite cutting into serious reward time.
But a tropical storm (!) kept us from driving home, so David, Cooper, Will, Clay & I headed out for a final night of dinner and drinks, and then Clay & Susan kindly volunteered their floor. Early Tuesday morning I woke and drove home, and one of the most incredible weekends of my year came to a close.
Thank you all for an amazing time, an amazing job, an amazing life.
I love the "Vanna White" gesture Rene is giving in that unpacking picture.
I remember you saying in an interview last year how much you enjoyed Dragoncon and found it valuable. I see that it was fun as well for you.
Lou, it was an honor and a pleasure. I'm ready for next year!
Dragon*Con is always too brief. Should be two of them each year. Three maybe.
What an awesome time it looks like!!! I've never been to an event like that before but always been fascinated by them and if I ever get the opportunity I'm going to check it out!!!
Jen, you absolutely should. Also, you won't believe it until you do.
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