As usual I’m probably one of the last people to give my thoughts on the convention (it was held April 24-26), though I did fill out the official survey/feedback form. As anyone knows who reads this blog I love conventions, I’ve been going them since I was a teenager and the past 3 years I’ve been to them as an author/artist/vendor selling my materials.
Let’s start with what I really enjoy about conventions, the costumes! I’m not much for wearing them myself (I haven’t in years) but I love to see the time, effort, creative thought and awesomeness that is cos-play. Whenever my table isn’t busy (I sell my books, The Newfoundland Vampire books 1 and 2, comics and Magic cards) I love to see the great costumes and get the occasional picture. I’ll state here that many of the pictures I post here are not ones I took, I was stuck to my table almost the entire time, so I just couldn’t get a lot of the good ones.
The last 4 are ones I took, some really amazing costumes. The Elf warrior costume took a year to make! (I talked with her for a bit) and is just incredible. The Orcs I’m sure took a huge amount of time and effort as well. Enough about costumes though.
In terms of guest I really can’t comment, I didn’t get a chance to meet any of them. I wasn’t feeling great that weekend and went right home after each day at the con. I can say the volunteers and organizers did their best job ever. This year I was very impressed with a constant supply of bottle water, consistent trash pickup and even a supply of snacks brought to each table! That was very much appreciated, so thank you!
This year was also the first time to feature a full day on Friday (10am-8pm) and it was certainly worth it. As usual I won’t dwell on numbers so I’ll just say that after Friday I had made back my table fee and Saturday and Sunday were all profit, which was excellent. By books are being re-released by Distinguished Press, if you’d like to purchase book 1 you can do so here.
Cons are the kind of place where you only get to see people a few times a year, so I enjoy that aspect a lot. A few of my friends stopped by my table and it was nice to see the two Jeff’s (as I call them). Jeff Keeping runs Atlanti-Con(which is always excellent, if you’re in Corner Brook the end of September, or make it a road trip, either way you should come!) and was there to represent his con (and check everything out I’m sure). Jeff Power was there with double-duty as a volunteer and to represent his new convention Avalon Expo (making it’s inaugural showing the end of August here in St. John’s, come see us!). I would like to note that Jeff had a food vendor at Atlanti-Con (Scardey Cat Rescue) and I think it would be a great addition if SFOTR could have hot food/sandwiches available (I didn’t want East Side Mario’s and had no real way to get it, though I appreciated the discount cards given to me.)
Aside from all that I voice my usual concern that the Holiday Inn is a little too small to hold the number of people that show up for SFOTR. I have heard a rumor that next year will be a different hotel, I hope this comes true. As with any public event there are a few people who get on your nerves, I won’t go into any more detail and I know it is has nothing to do with the organizers or volunteers, its just the nature of any public event. I gave a talk on Sunday and while I thought it went okay, it is always frustrating when people get up and leave, once again though I know it’s just human nature and can’t be avoided. Next year I will add some pictures and a slide show to spice things up a little.
Overall though I had a great time at SFOTR 9 and I’m already looking forward to next year. I have some new ideas for my table and (hopefully) book 3 of my Newfoundland Vampire series will be available. I also have to work out how this Square program works (its an app to let you take credit card/debit payments), I ended up giving away two copies of my book because I though the payment had gone through, oh well! Until next year, keep up the great work everyone involved, thanks for having me with with SFOTR and I’ll see some of you in August!