The Empire has gone to Brighton. Well I have anyway. Seeing as I have a little time spare I thought I’d compile my posts on http://www.Fantasy-Faction.com, I’ve been doing a bit of a mini blog for them you see. Are you ready?
If you want to share in the cheers, the tears and the beers of World Fantasy Con 2013, then I’ll be giving it to you blow by blow, glass by glass, indiscretion by indiscretion… right here. I’ll post the latest wisdom and controversy as it emerges from Brighton, from Thursday 31 Oct to Sunday 2 Nov inclusive.
I’ll be putting up reports and pictures of the great and the good… and the less great and the bad (as long as it’s not too incriminating). I’ll be rubbing shoulders with Brian Aldiss (well, he’s much taller than me, so maybe his elbow will catch me in the neck), Sir Terry Pratchett, Tom Lloyd, Stephen Deas and a load of American scribblers too.
But the buzz and complaints actually started a while back. Here are current talking points on the net:
- The entry fee of 150 quid is too high – especially when you add on hotel, travel and restaurant costs – meaning it costs at least 500 quid all in
- There were a limited number of cheaper tickets issued in Aug, but they went to those in the know and those best connected – meaning that touts can now sell on tickets at a decent mark up
- The slots for panels, readings and signings are dominated by the American names and only the biggest of the UK authors – meaning that not even A J Dalton himself can get any sort of proper platform beyond the overcrowded bar
- Nice though the convention centre is, its capacity is pretty limited, meaning that the attendees are in large part from the ‘trade’ – authors, publishers, merchandise sellers, etc. – just how many fantasy fans will actually get in? And it’s meant to be the ‘World’ convention? For the sake of comparison, you may like to know that when Dragon Con took place in Atlanta a few years back, it had 50,000 attendees. (Is the Hilton Hotel Brighton really going to manage that?)
These are not my opinions and insights, I should add, but feel free to respond with thoughts. In the meantime, as a Halloween treat and to celebrate my attendance of WFC (the first time it’s been in the UK in 17 years), I’m giving away Knight of Ages for free until the end of the Convention. Get your free download here: https://metaphysicalfantasy.wordpress.com/knight-of-ages/
Even as we speak, I’m hurtling down on the train from Manchester to Brighton – alright, ‘trundling’ more than ‘hurtling’. Anyway, I’m trawling thru the programme for World Fantasy Con, and today’s highlights include readings from Ian Hunter, Charles Stross, Guy Adams, (the mighty) Michael Marshall Smith and (the glorious) Garth Nix! (There are others, but I’ve never heard of them.)
There are panel debates from 2pm, but one of them’s on ‘Genre Poetry’?! What the? Poetry is the smallest selling literature in the world. Or do they mean the sort of poetry you get in Tolkien, etc? Either way, not my bag really. Hello? This is a fantasy convention, not a poetry convention! More than that: it’s the WORLD Fantasy Convention! Guess they were desperate to fill the programme on the Thursday – after all, most people probably won’t be turning up until Friday.
Yet here’s a proper panel topic for Thursday: ‘A Tribute to Richard Matheson’. Mr Matheson sadly passed away this year. He authored I Am Legend, Duel and episodes of The Twilight Zone (amongst many other things). RIP
The convention really gets into gear on Friday, by the looks of the very crowded programme. Joe Hill! Oh my. Sir Terry Pratchett!! Patrick Rothfuss!!! The dreams and the screams!
Until my next post, remember you only have five days left to get your free download of Knight of Ages, which I’m giving away as a Halloween treat and to celebrate my attendance of WFC13: https://metaphysicalfantasy.wordpress.com/knight-of-ages/. Enjoy!
No time to pen anything today, but here, have some photos!
The man who all other men want to be: Mr Joe Hill. Brilliant bloke, really enjoyed his company.
Ian Whates signing his life away.
Tom Lloyd checking in paparazzi style !
Its Patrick Rothfuss and his immense Gimli like beard.
That’ll be me and Trudi Canavan from this morning.
I shall return with part two soon!