Bill Roper (billroper) wrote,
Bill Roper

Brief Minicon Report

Sam, Bonnie, and I managed to leave for Minicon after only one return to our house to get Bonnie's coat. Not that she actually needed it during most of the weekend.

The drive up was uneventful. Sam had hoped we might get to the Norske Nook for pie before they closed, but since they seem to have closed at 8 PM, that wasn't going to happen. We got lucky and dodged what looked like some really nasty thunderstorms and got in just before midnight.

The next morning, we unpacked the van into the Dealers' Room, made slightly more challenging by the hotel, which had decided that they didn't want us bringing our stuff in through the lobby where there was a ramp. So we parked at the foot of the short set of stairs and passed boxes up to put them on the cart. There was much arranging of CDs, lunch, more arranging of CDs, and eventually everything was properly displayed. The good news was that the tables were wider than normal and that dealers who had ordered two tables got the six foot tables they'd been promised, except that one of the two tables was actually eight feet long. This was great, as we no longer fit well in a twelve foot space.

I figured things might be slow -- and they were, since Minicon is running about 550 in attendance -- so I brought my guitar down and spent dead time noodling on it behind the table. And I found this perfectly good chord progression.

Harlan Ellison dropped by the table looking for Howard Harrison's CD, which I had exactly one copy left of. (Harlan and Howie had met the night before and a good impression had been made.) However, someone explained to Harlan that Howie'd told him that he had one copy of the CD left that he intended to give to Harlan. Harlan apologized for not buying the CD. I told him no problem. :) I sold the CD before the end of the weekend. I could have sold at least three more...

Kudos to Greg Ketter, Minicon's chairman, for managing to get Terry Pratchett and Harlan Ellison as guests in successive years. That's quite a trick.

Sam, Bonnie, and I grabbed dinner with the Bentleys and Benjy, then headed back to catch the Riverfolk concert. Benjy snagged an envelope for me to put the transcription of Harlan's Iguanacon GoH speech that shsilver had asked me to bring so that Harlan could review it before publication in the upcoming ISFiC Press book of Worldcon Guest of Honor speeches. Eventually, the envelope was given to Greg to pass along, with Steven's address and phone number on it so that Harlan could contact him with any comments or questions.

After Riverfolk, we set up for a music circle. I played a couple of songs before heading off to bed. I'd been seriously minus on sleep for the two weeks preceding the con and decided that the better part of valor was getting something approximating seven hours of slumber.

Of course, when I got to the room, I ended up scrawling a chorus to go with the chord progression I'd found earlier in the day. But I still got enough sleep.

On Saturday, Bonnie relieved me at the table so I could run to the Dairy Queen for lunch. I ran into the Bentleys there, which made for a good conversation. Then back to the guitar, where I started hunting for verses to add to the chorus. chasophonic wandered by and we compared notes on songwriting briefly, about the time that I realized that I needed a bridge. Ack! Not a third melody line! But by the end of the afternoon, I'd finished it up.

Sam and Bonnie had gone out for an early dinner with Andy, so I just ran to the TGI Friday and had a sandwich, then came back for the art auction. I'd drafted Sam and he acquitted himself well for his first time as an auctioneer, as did Bonnie, and the fellow (Peter?) who was at his first con and had volunteered to run art. The auction was a bit thin, but we had a number of charity pieces for TAFF/DUFF and managed to raise a bit of money for that as well as for the artists. And David Wilford (whose LJ handle I've conveniently misplaced) ran a good show.

I played the new song for Sam and Bonnie, then headed over to hear the tail end of markiv1111 and Louie's concert. Afterwards, we set up in a music circle. Later in the evening, I played the new song and It's All Right, which sounded really good with the circle playing along. Thanks, guys!

I crashed early again, woke up before my wake up call, and managed to get out of the room in good time on Sunday. Nothing too eventful happened. We packed, we drove, we discovered that the Heckel's Family Restaurant where I always stop on Easter Sunday (since the Norske Nook is closed) has been replaced by a brand-new Moe's Diner, but the food there was good, as was the company on the way home. We got a little rain when we got to Illinois, but it wasn't bad. Despite detouring around construction, we only took about 10 minutes longer than we had on the way up.

daisy_knotwise welcomed us home, we put Sam and Bonnie in their van and pointed them toward Chicago and that was the end of the con.

I didn't see much of Harlan, but I had a good time.
Tags: cons, minicon41, musings

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