Sunday, September 05, 2010

Work and Play

I think people design conventions to squeeze as much energy out of participants as possible. Not that it's a bad thing, of course, it's been highly entertaining.

This morning I started with The Problems with First Contact with Sean McMullen, Dave Freer and Mark L. Olson. It was more a comparative argument, for example, using the affect colonial explorers had on Pacific Islanders as an example. Then there was Editing the Novel, an hour-long explanation of how professional editors deal with manuscripts - not much new there - followed by Has Hollywood Sucked the Vampire Dry? Marianne De Pierres, Lara Morgan, Kirstyn McDermott and Catherynne M. Valente dissected the genre at large - and not one mention of LKH.

Catherynne, I think, summed up what's wrong with the supposed 'kick ass heroine': "Screaming is a poor character trait." Yet, a number of popular characters seem to let rip with an ear-piercing wail.

The Secret Life of Literary Agents wasn't so secret; bottom line: research the agents and abide by what they want you to do in the submission process.

At last, mid-afternoon came along with Norman Cates' WETA Digital Presentation. It was just so totally AWESOME!!! Norman gave us an insight into how those amazing effects are made on Avatar, LOTR, The Lovely Bones and others WETA has been involved with.

The final event on my schedule was a Boxcutters podcast conversation with Dr Who writers, Rob Shearman and Paul Cornell, and John Richards. A very funny end to the day.

Tomorrow, the Convention comes to an end, but still a full day. I am so looking forward to the Vampire vs Zombie Smackdown! Not sure who I'll be supporting - they both have big 'ick' factors.

Tip of the day: really make sure your takeaway coffee lid is secure (how can it happen twice??)

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