spindizzy: Moko and Kyoko from Skip Beat!, Moko emoting angry skulls and Kyoko emoting love hearts. (LET ME LOVE YOU)
[personal profile] spindizzy
Hello my darlings! I am back from Nine Worlds and I've finally started writing up my con diary! I meant to do it sooner, but I decided to take Monday to relax and hopefully not get con crash? (Dark suspicion: I crashed on Sunday.) We'll see how I did.

So behind the cut are my magical London adventures! I am going to tag people by their handles when I know them, and I am really sorry if it looks like I'm name dropping because that is 100% not my intention, and doubly sorry if we hung out and I didn't tag you! I'm gonna be splitting this into two posts, because hello, I'm me; if you want the shorter version with more pictures, I livetweeted it mostly in one handy thread!

General
  • This year I was staying with [twitter.com profile] clairerousseau and [twitter.com profile] itsreileyright, who were both lovely, especially in the face of me not being awake a lot.

  • I actually kinda knew what I was doing this year, which was really nice! I didn't get lost, I only missed out on a couple of panels, and I didn't buy more than I could pack! Hurray! On the downside, I grossly overestimated the time I had to knit stuff, so no one's random knitted nonsense got done. IT'S FINE, I CAN POST IT TO PEOPLE. OR HOLD ON TO IT SO THAT I DEFINITELY HAVE TO SEE THEM AGAIN.
    • (If anyone wants somewhat wonky knitting, HIT ME UP.)

    • Also, I was still anxious, but I remembered to take all of my tablets so it was honestly better than it could have been!

  • This year's "Everyone wants you to watch this one thing" (because there is always one show that's getting all the buzz) was less unified than last year's, but I think it was The Good Place. Black Sails made an impressive showing again, but didn't quite make it to the top spot!

  • Favourite cosplays: Mombi and the Wheeler, And Peggys ([twitter.com profile] buckbeakbabe was so worried that no one would get the joke, but HAHA! SUCCESS!), Furiosa again (I have no idea who the Furiosa cosplayer is, but I see them rocking the dance floor every year and they seem REALLY COOL!), the knitted cosplayers because that has spread, a Conner who was about as excited to be recognised as I was to recognise them ("You know who I am!" "You're Conner!" "I'm the android sent by Cyberlife!") – I think it was [twitter.com profile] histortea? And [twitter.com profile] clairerousseau's Boggart Snape made a return!

  • I really liked how many presenters introduced themselves by name and pronouns? It's REALLY NICE. Especially when I remembered to WRITE DOWN names & pronouns to make my notes easier!

  • Ask me how many times I foxed myself because our hotel room was exactly identical to the one we were in last year, just on the other side of the corridor. You wouldn't think this would make a difference but apparently that is all it takes for me to keep trying to go the wrong way down the corridor to the elevator. ?????? Brains.

  • I did not expect that I would stick to my "No caffeine" rule while I was away, but SOMEHOW I DID and I feel kinda proud and mainly bemused. I DID THE THING THAT I SAID I WAS GOING TO DO AND I DON'T KNOW HOW OR WHY. It maybe helped? I was mildly anxious the whole time, I don't know if it would have been worse if I'd actually caffeinated myself.
    • ... Actually, considering there was at least one day where we didn't go to bed until three in the morning, and then got up at like 7:30 the next day, I feel like I ACHIEVED something there.

  • Breakfasts at the Novotel, man. The consistent con-going advice I see is that if you're at a con and breakfast is included in your room price? STOCK UP AT BREAKFAST. It turns out that this is REALLY GOOD ADVICE! ... Plus it's great to see everyone at breakfast shambling around in their costumes.

  • Nine Worlds gives everyone tokens in their registration pack that they can give to cosplayers, and the cosplayers can trade them in for badges, and I have just taken to asking people if they actually want tokens because I'm pretty sure that last year No Face and the Tardis full of Bras had every single badge on offer and were still getting tokens.

  • I have notes on almost every panel/presentation/workshop I went to, so if I mention a panel but haven't done the full write-up, just let me know that you want it and I'll sort something out!

  • I am really glad to see that my atrocious habit of numbering panel speakers and just noting their names by their numbers at the top is ACTUALLY WORKING. Didn't lose track of who was speaking, heck yeah!

  • Last year the breaks between content felt SO LONG (or possibly I just went to less content???) but this year I pretty much BLINKED and they were gone. Wut.

  • I'm not saying that I'm a workaholic, but I'm kinda surprised and appalled by the number of people I met from twitter who were like "SUSAN YOU DO SO MANY THINGS PLEASE TAKE A BREAK." ... I'm sorry! I'm going to try to take breaks!

  • I love so many people in this bar and you're all wonderful.


Thursday
  • GUESS WHO WAS REALLY SMART and a) packed their luggage in a very foolish way that meant that nothing fit, somehow, and b) left their planner at work so that they had to go in and get it before their train? THAT'S RIGHT, IT WAS ME. (Thank you [twitter.com profile] hardlyaverage and [twitter.com profile] captainraz for lending me the suitcase! It was exactly the right size, it turns out!)

  • It also meant that I was an hour early for my train, which is about the right degree of early, NGL. I got to knit and talk to my mum and get very kindly laughed at for messing up my knitting!

  • I got into London almost exactly as it started to rain, because, y'know, everywhere you gooooooo, you always take the weather where you gooooooo. Apparently Hammersmith station flooded not long after I got out of it! To the point where people nicked chairs from a café to build a bridge across the road! The weather was mainly awkward for me because I brought nothing but cute skirts and summer dresses, but eh I looked cute..

  • First stop: Gay's the Word! Where I spent like... An hour...? Just browsing the second hand lesbian fiction. There was A BUNCH, I may have spent FAR TOO MUCH.
    • It turns out that they do have a tiny tiny shelf of bi and pan fiction, I just missed it because it was in with the straights.

    • (They have a tiny ace non-fiction section!)

    • Haul:
      • Transcendent 2 — anthology of trans spec fic, and all the authors I recognised are good? I saw a copy of it in the wild! I didn't even know there WERE hardcopies but now it is MINE! (... Although let's be real, I'm going to read it and immediately pass it on to [twitter.com profile] hardlyaverage because I KNOW WHAT I'M ABOUT.)

      • Eclair — anthology of f/f manga, which I have now read and had some problems with, because... There's maybe fourteen stories, and most of them are not what I would describe as healthy relationships? Ugh.

      • Two secret books??? They are not really secret, I'm just going to post them off to someone because I know they'll be relevant to her interests. ♥

      • Cemetary Murders and A Cold Case of Murder by Jean Marcy — Q: Susan, did you notice that you've picked up books one and four? A: You must be new around here. ... But look, look, PI/detective romance with ice queens and disaster lesbians! I am very here for this! (... I now want to refer to this trope as "disaster dykes" for the alliteration, someone stop me.)

      • The Quokka Question by Claire McNab — I would like to report this book to [twitter.com profile] quokkaquotidian because the quokka on the cover is not cute. But eh, I've liked Claire McNab's other stuff so hopefully that'll make up for it.

      • Fair Play by Rose Beecham — I honestly have no memory of what this is about, but it's looking like a New Zealand police procedural, so this should be interesting!

      • Witness by Dann Hazel — I picked this one up for [twitter.com profile] jilliferium (I sent her the title to ask if she wanted it, but only got her message after I left, so I was 100% that person who makes a joke about leaving and immediately coming back, then becomes their own punchline.), and mentioned to the guy that it was for her dissertation and what it was about – and he actually wrote down some other titles for her! Which is really kind!

    • I love Gay's the Word, you guys. I wish I had more money to spend there.

  • From there I went straight to the hotel to dry off and freak out quietly? I meant to ask if I could volunteer to help set up, but then I was just a little... Blue-screening? And gently failing at knitting while enjoying the thunder storm? (I was somehow CONVINCED that I could knit a scarf in time to give it to Claire when she showed up and I have no idea why I thought this because I am still slow at knitting.) I did briefly consider moving to the bar, but... NOPE. PEOPLE. NOPE. At one point I whispered "Claire Claire Claire" to my knitting and [twitter.com profile] clairerousseau IMMEDIATELY SHOWED UP and if that isn't proof that I have summoning powers I don't know what is.

  • And I saw [twitter.com profile] faintdreams, who is amazing and an excellent reason to go to Nine Worlds all by herself! We went out for tea and I got to meet MORE NEW PEOPLE, whose names I got but whose twitter handles I completely missed so I can't go "These people! I got to hang out with THESE cool people!" (Basically, if you stand between [twitter.com profile] clairerousseau and [twitter.com profile] faintdreams you can probably get introduced to every single person who comes to Nine Worlds. There was also a wild [twitter.com profile] runalongwomble who showed up ten minutes late with starbucks, which means that we have FINALLY MET instead of being in the same place at the same time and never encountering each other!

  • ([twitter.com profile] faintdreams, if you want to borrow comics or for me to see what I've got in hardcopy, hit me up! I have a bunch I can lend you!)

  • After that, I... Actually did barcon? Kinda? I at least was in the bar talking nonsense with a bunch of really cool people, so I was happy! Womble got ambushed with TV recs, I knitted a lot, and we found [twitter.com profile] itsreileyright! ... Well, she found us, but it still counts!


Friday
  • First day of content! First day of content! I went to the Structure in Fanfic workshop this morning, which was kinda fun? The nice thing about fanfic is that you can completely throw traditional structures into the sea if that suits your narrative, or borrow the structure from something else, so it was nice to see that acknowledged? The main bits of advice I took from it is "Don't judge your worth by your kudos" (which is hard to do when you write in "six people and a shoelace" sized fandoms anyway, but still) and that you are always going to start your story too early, so you start where you need to to tell yourself the story, because you can usually chop off what doesn't fit later.

  • I raided the Big Green Books stall! I bought Blue Shift by Jane O'Reilly and the books 2-4 of the Invisible Libraries series. I mentioned this on twitter, but [twitter.com profile] faintdreams and I were talking about signings, and it turns out there wasn't an official schedule? But I mentioned that I really hoped Genevieve Cogman would be signing again and GUESS WHO WAS BEHIND ME. *throws self into the sea*

  • It was a toss up between going to the "The Only Toilet in Thedas" panel on the mundane in SFF, or going to the "Putting the punk back in Cyberpunk" After much waffling, I went with cyberpunk, and it was really cool!
    • Single best line from it: "If I can have mantis arms, why do I need the gender binary?"

    • Seriously, they draaaaagged the latest cyberpunk things for taking a genre that could be full of queerness and interesting commentary on bodies and transhumanism and making it capitalistic, bland, and white, I was very here for it.

    • (Someone pointed out that apparently modern skylines are based on the cyberpunk aesthetic of things like Bladerunner, which sounds amazing to me.)

    • I did like the interest [twitter.com profile] hellotailor showed in having stories from outside the cities in cyberpunk worlds? She suggested stories about communities destroyed by metropolises (... I'm picturing gentrificaton on steroids, ngl), police states where people don't have the tech to fight back, creative problem solving! I'd be very interested in recs if anyone has any!

    • But yes, I can definitely write up my notes, there was a lot covered!

  • I did go to the "So you want to start a twitch channel" panel! (I don't want to start like a formal twitch, because hahahaha hello friends I do not have enough time for the things I am doing, let alone ADDITIONAL stuff, but I have considered just streaming the video games I'm playing to a) get people to help me make choices, and b) so that people can ACTUALLY SEE THAT I AM TAKING A BREAK) It was very 101, but that was about what I wanted?

  • I ended up with a few quiet moments, so I popped into the Yarn Skill Share room, where someone very kindly helped me to find where I'd dropped stitches in the scarf I was making for Claire and get them all back together. ;_; And there was some truly BEAUTIFUL wool there – the person who helped me was making socks out of black and NEON self-striping yarn, I was breathtakingly jealous. (Also: I am immensely envious of people who've mastered knitting quickly, especially when it's "Just move the needle tip, not your hand" levels of quickly. I WANT TO BE ABLE TO DO THAT!)

  • Yarn dyer recommendations I have received: All's Wool That Ends Wool (which is where the neon stripes came from, but also they have an ADVENT CALENDAR OF WOOL omg omg omg), Third Vault Yarn, aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand, nope, it's gone, I'm sorry! No, I tell an absolute lie, it was Owl About Yarn, there we go, I knew I had it somewhere. (Someone in the craft meet-up had a really cute little bag to keep their yarn in, and twitter very kindly came through on where to find them! (I'm currently keeping mine in ziplock bags because it's a little too close to payday, but soooooooooon.)

  • I got to meet [twitter.com profile] tamborine again! That was cool, and I got to introduce her as the poetry friend, and get accused of cruelty by not introducing her as the "won Pointless that one time" friend! I am the best at introductions. :D

  • The Online Resources For Writers panel probably WASN'T designed as a response to the farce of a "writer's tools" panel last year (where one guy suggested hands as a writing tool, which... Sure dude, you weren't wrong, but I was hoping for actual useful suggestions?), but that's genuinely how I'm taking it. But it was pretty useful! Some of the ones I knew, but there were free alternatives suggested and kinda cool sounding sites?

  • I can't remember what I was going to go to instead, but I ended up making a split-second decision to go to the Psychology of Video Games panel, which ended up being a) a guy I listened to last year, I swear, how does this keep happening, and b) an explanation of Jungian theory through the medium of Persona games. In retrospect, probably kinda obvious, but I was honestly a little surprised! This is probably because I know nothing about Jung, not a single thing. Except... It kinda turns out that if you've ever played a Persona game, you kinda do?
    • Like, full on, personas and shadows are Jungian concepts. The core mechanics of the Persona series, and I didn't even know they were based on this specific guy. That's where we're at here.

    • BUT it was all really interesting! He picked out themes that I didn't actually know enough about the Persona franchise and/or psychology to put together, although when someone explains it it's like "... Ohhhhhhhhh!" and I have no idea if this is elaborate fan theories or actually something the devs put in. Either way it was cool! (I have notes, and can type them up if people want to see.)

    • And I'll be honest, dude has my forever vote just because in a talk about psychology, he slapped up a slide about DRAMAtical Murder like "Yep, I've played it, I like it, now we're talking about how Sly Blue is the id, Aoba is the ego, and Ren, bless his heart, spends all his time being the super ego keeping Sly Blue under control and once you accept/deal with Sly Blue he can develop his own personality." RESPECT TO THIS SPEAKER. ... Especially because I believe his response to "If DMMd's Ren is the superego, is P5's Morgana?" and I'm pretty sure his response was just HELL no.

  • DID YOU KNOW that if you go to London, the prices at Wetherspoons are actually about the same price as they are in the rest of the country? So I now know a grand total of ONE PLACE in London that isn't a McDonalds where you can get a meal and a drink for less than a tenner! [twitter.com profile] clairerousseau and [twitter.com profile] itsreilleyright and I ducked out for tea, which was really nice!

  • AND THEN it turns out that there was a disco Friday night! I got very confused, because I went in to have a little dance and a) none of my friends were there, b) it was not [twitter.com profile] mikebrooks668 or [twitter.com profile] scattermoon doing the music, and c) I knew NONE of these songs. But eh, it was fine, respect to the DJs for doing an entire playlist that was mostly female vocalists, I got to wear my fancy frock (if you saw the dress I wore to the Hugos: yeah! That one!) and my rainbow petticoats, and dance a little, so everything was grand. Apparently my face when I found out that there was going to be another disco was adorable.

  • Look, I'm never going to stop finding it funny that there's a massive rush onto the dancefloor when Mr Brightside comes on. Especially because I WAS LEAVING, Mr Brightside came on, and I straight up just tossed my bag to one side and went back.

  • We didn't get a chance to play Guillotine with [twitter.com profile] buckbeakbabie, but NEXT YEAR. IF THERE IS A NEXT YEAR. THAT'S GONNA HAPPEN.


End part one! Part two!

(no subject)

Date: 2018-12-08 09:03 am (UTC)
lokifan: black Converse against a black background (Default)
From: [personal profile] lokifan
Look, I'm never going to stop finding it funny that there's a massive rush onto the dancefloor when Mr Brightside comes on. Especially because I WAS LEAVING, Mr Brightside came on, and I straight up just tossed my bag to one side and went back.

Ahahaha RIGHT? I'm the same way. I think I was leaving that disco, and Carly Rae Jepsen came out and I ran straight back. I also plan to poke Kieran (who DJs it) about more Nicki Minaj next year...