It’s a strange prospect, attending a convention when you’re an introvert – particularly if you’re there as a “guest”, meant to be taking part in panels and being generally chatty and approachable. What this means for me normally is that I get very excited, have a great time, and then periodically have to go back up to the hotel room and sit quietly by myself for a bit while I reboot my brain. As alarming as I naturally find it all, Nineworlds is the best con for an introvert, because great care has been taken to make everyone as comfortable as possible – evident in many little details, from the priority seating to the badges for preferred pronouns.
I had a great time. I worried, as usual, that I wasn’t talking to people enough, and that when I did I wasn’t very good at it, or that my need to take frequent breaks meant I was missing stuff, but this is my normal reaction to being in a big place with lots of people. I worried also that I’m bad at saying anything useful when on a panel, but luckily thanks to my awesome panel amigos (Adrian Tchaikovsky, Pete Sutton, Laure Eve – you guys rock!) the panel I was included on didn’t suffer over much for it.
Huge thanks also to everyone who kindly came along to my signing and let me draw dragons in their books – it was wonderful to see so many friendly faces, and THE IRON GHOST samplers seem to go down really well. 😀 (and thanks, as ever, to Forbidden Planet for looking after me)
Highlights? There are always so many with Nineworlds. Head banging along to a Queen tribute band; the Dragons Vs Werewolves Vs Vampires Vs Warlocks panel (DRAGONS FOREVER YOU GUYS); the Eye of Sauron putting his tuppence worth in; watching a full size Xenomorph wandering towards the children’s play area; dinner with Team Mushens where I made friends with a pillar; getting arrested by a Judge; the Gollancz PROMNADO! with it’s brief masterclass in various forms of dance; and of course, talking and catching up with so many excellent geeks.
Nineworlds is smoothly run, inclusive, and fun. The organisers should be very proud. Special thanks to the volunteers who ran around like crazy people keeping everything moving – you guys make the con feel like home, and it’s why we’ll all be coming back next year.