Tags: wiscon 35

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Wiscon 35 - The Gathering Report

At The Gathering there was a papercrafts table. Part of what you could do there is make 'Use Your Mic/Show Your Lips' paddles/fans for audience members to use at the panels. You could also decorate fancy wands for people who aren't able to stand to hold up whenever directed to 'please stand', or just to wave about because they were awesome.

I made a paddle, using my awesome pasting skills. It was actually pretty fun sorting through all the various bits of pictures and stickers and stamps. I see why scrapbooking is so popular. I could totally get into collecting some old magazines and bits of ephemera for that sort of thing. Once I have my own place with more room.

At the Found Words table, there were little slips of words cut out from various sources. I used my awesome pasting skills again to make a poem. Or.. something. Maybe it's just a bizarre ransom note.

I have pics up on Facebook if you'd like to friend me to have a look. (I'm the Julie Andrews with the similar userpic.)

Here's the text though:

The Bunnies arrived
Check It Out
a world of Scientific CATS
and how WILL We build all-new Catfish
our future fit our fingers
Escape THE ONE YOU ENDED UP tasting
THERE'S ALWAYS "life hereafter"

It's deep, man. If you don't get it, it's because you're not as deep as me.

I also voted in the Con or Bust ultimate showdown. I never did hear the results of that.
I bought a bunch of ARCs, as previously stated.

I bid on Eclipse 4 in the Tiptree Auction. Ultimately did not win that.

They were already out of lemonade really early, so I didn't get any lemonade or any cookies. I collected maybe 3 stamps on my card. I have yet to complete a Gathering card. (Can you even do it with the long line at the Tarot readings?!)

Nothing jumped out at me at the clothing swap.

The Gathering is where I started to see Tshirts I owned or recognized from Teefury or Woot. Woot! At some point, I lost count of how many I saw.
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Wiscon 35 - Food Report

I have a tooth that's bothering me and I'm vegetarian. So you may notice a trend of softer foods, and vegetarian ones.

Cinnamon and Sugar soft pretzel in O'Hare while waiting 3 hours for my next flight.

Cheese and fruit at AROOO reception.

Pad thai with tofu from Noodles & Co. In retrospect, a smaller bowl would've been better. But I did eat most of it later that night. Right before bed, which I usually do NOT do. It turns out if you want a fridge at the Concourse (and you're not in the Governor's Club), there are specific rooms with fridges. They won't deliver one. And I'd already changed rooms once at that point.

Spinach, tomato and feta pizza and a nice salad with chick peas and beats from Ian's Pizza. Got another punch on my card! How many Wiscons will it take for me to get a free slice? Also orange Fanta. Not enough places around here have Fanta. (Domino's shows it on their website, but they liiiiiie. It's actually Sunkist. Which has caffeine, so it's actually a difference that matters!)

Veggie dog from consuite (Smartdog). Also popcorn.

I may have had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich later that night.

The best wrap EVER! from a food cart at the farmer's market. It was Sweet Thai Chili with basil tofu. I asked for light on the chili and no onions. Excellent, excellent, excellent. I'm sad it was a food cart, because they might not be there next year! And then only on Saturday!

I believe I also ate 2 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches this day.

What was Sunday lunch? Hrrrm. Oh yes, der. The ASL Lunch I organized was Sunday lunch. We went to Hawk's Bar & Grill and I had the portobella sandwich. I didn't like whatever they'd marinated the mushrooms in. So I won't be having that again. They did have a veggie burger and other vegetarian options though, so I won't write them off entirely.

Sunday dinner was Flavor of India. I believe I had.. aloo chana. Very mild. It has chick peas and potatoes. I probably wouldn't get it again. Mostly because there's so many other Indian options that are vegetarian, I'm sure there are other things I'd enjoy more.

Then malt something something ice cream from Chocolate something. Reportedly the best ice cream place in Madison. And I can't exactly disagree. It was quite good.

Then the dessert salon, previously reported on.

So it was a shame that at that point I'd had several different desserts. There was plenty of cake left when I popped into the Broad Universe party. But I did not need more sugar! Diversicon also had lots of vegetarian food at their party. I didn't have any though.

Monday I didn't eat anything but a few pretzels until I got home, where I ordered Papa Gino's right before they closed. Ravioli if you're interested. :)

And I think that was it. I'm kind of kicking myself for not trying a Cornish pasty or getting over to the crepe place. Goals for next year!

And I can't praise the consuite enough. Fresh made popcorn is awesome by itself, but they have hot dogs! Veggie hot dogs even! With wheat buns! Also the peanut butter and jelly sandwiches I made myself were also wheat buns. They also have fruit, veggie, hummus, pita. Some of the other usual things you'd expect in a consuite. Wiscon has the best consuite ever and puts all the others to shame. Which is kind of redundant, since the con is so close to so many awesome restaurants of varying price ranges.

READERCON, I'm looking at you!!! You could learn a thing or two!!!!
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Wiscon 35 - Book Report

My 2-month long bookfast starts tomorrow. I can read books. I'd better read books! But I can't borrow any from the library or download any unless I had a pre-existing hold on it, or if it's for Triple Take. And I can't buy any! With that in mind, these Wiscon purchases and the followup Amazon purchases I made today based on Wiscon reqs will be the last books I acquire for 2 whole months! They will be the only ones that look shiny.

ARCs from Galley Ho at the Gathering. 1$ donation to Wiscon gets you an ARC.

Catching Santa
Lost Voices
The Academy Year 1
Television Without Pity
Eona (yay!)
Iron Crowned (Richelle Mead ftw)

Books bought from Dealer's Room:

New:
Eon (already read, needed my own copy) (Also tiptree)
Mindscape by Andrea Hairston (Tiptree!)
Distances by Vandana Singh (Tiptree!)
Dangerous Space by Kelley Eskridge (Tiptree!)
Wiscon Chronicles 4 edited by Nisi Shawl

Used paperbacks:
Ace double with The Girl Who Was Plugged In by James Tiptree
Ace double with The New Atlantis by Ursula K. Le Guin
The Falling Woman by Pat Murphy (Nebula Project)
The Sable Moon by Nancy Springer
The Black Beast by Nancy Springer
The Book of Suns by Nancy Springer
The White Hart by Nancy Springer

Books bought on Monday from Avol's and A Room of One's Own:

Earth Magic by Alexei and Cory Panshin
The Drowning City by Amanda Downum (sequel is on Tiptree list)
The Inheritance & Other Stories by Robin Hobb/Megan Lindholm
Will Supervillains be on the Final? by Naomi Novik (NA manga!)

Books ordered on Amazon:

Jumpstart the World by Catherine Ryan Hyde (genderfloomp list)
Gender Outlaws (genderfloomp)
Whipping Girl by Julia Serano (mentioned on Princess Boys panel and then on genderfloomp)
Eclipse 4 (because AROOO couldn't find a copy to sell me Monday)
Cue for Treason by Geoffrey Trease (mentioned on a Tiptree panel)

I begin to see more and more why I need to do this bookfast thing..
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Wiscon 35 - Report 2

I have decided not to go in chronological order. That requires like, memory and stuff. I'm just going to throw things out there as I think of them! In as many different posts as it takes before I run out of things to say or work the rest of the week crowds the rest of it out of my brain.

Dessert Salon:
I could've sworn I'd bought a dessert salon ticket, but my badge said D:0. And I looked for confirmation, but I couldn't find an Email or a Paypal record of it. So I must've used a credit card, but just.. could not find a record. So no proof.

So I was like.. well, who needs dessert salon anyway? But Kater was going, and she usually doesn't. And I like sitting with the cool people. So I bought one at the last minute. I picked up eclairs and key lime pie because there was no chocolate mousse left. Then as I was entering to go find Kater, this mob is rushing back out like there's a fire or something. It was because they'd announced it was time for seconds. I wish they'd waited a little bit longer. Just a minute or two!

The eclairs were horrible. Salty in the first bite, saltier in the second (when I got some of the middle). Do Wisconsinites not know how to make eclairs? I mean, they're basically Boston Creme Donuts when you get right down to it! Tasted a bit.. cheesy. Which I guess makes sense, actually. But, bleh. You get much better mini-eclairs out of the frozen food section.

Then I hear the chocolate mousse has been restocked, so I ran out to grab one of those. Muuuch better. They do not go wrong with the chocolate mousse.

The key lime pie was very limey. The crust was little bits that got stuck in my throat. The sour and sugar gave me a sore throat on top of that. Jun makes way better key lime pie. I ate roughly half of it.

This all on top of a dish of ice cream from reportedly the best ice cream place in Madison. Malt something or other. (The ice cream, not the shop. The shop was Chocolate something or other.) Very good.

The problem with buying dessert tickets and being in the back of the line is you get seats at a table, but off to the sides and/or in the corner. I could see the stage okay from where we were, but I had no view of the CART. Which I had been interested in checking out.

Reportedly the CART experiment was a great success! Not just for people who have trouble hearing, but for the Japanese contingent and others for whom English is a second (or third or fourth) language.

(For much the same reason I was thrilled to find subtitles on the latest Doctor Who I downloaded.)

Mics:

I felt mic use was much worse than previous Wiscon. I kept going into panels with.. well, apart from the ones with no mics, of which there were many, panels with panelists who were reluctant to use the mic. I don't know what it is. Unfamiliarity with mics? Shyness certainly doesn't seem to be the problem! Sharing mics is a bit of a pain, but most rooms had at least two. Afraid of the microphone as disease vector for Wiscon Norovirus 2.0?

Things heard (paraphrased): This is a small room, we don't need the mic right? There's not many of you here, we don't need the mic, right? I have a loud voice, I don't need the mic. You need to listen better. It was funny the first time, it won't be if I have to repeat it. Does anyone here need us to use the mic?

I may've been the only one to raise my hand on that last one, but frell-it, the mics are there, you're going to use them!

I have more to say on this, not all of it ranty, but I think I'm going to see if the editor of the next Wiscon Chronicles would like to consider it for inclusion.

Best Use of the Mic Award goes to the #notaboutrace panel whose full name I forget. They not only all used the mic themselves, but had the audience members with the questions come up to the front, use the mic, AND FACE THE AUDIENCE.

Seriously, guys, you need the game show format, silly, hilarious, sparkly pony panel to set the example on mic use? Do you? Really?

Apparently you do!
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Wiscon 35 - NonReport

So apparently it was mostly a netbook-free con I spent. I did most of my 'net stuff on my phone. Which is not the way to write con reports. If I had even had time to write con reports. I have the day off tomorrow, so hopefully I will get some con reports written then.

Things to come, in no particular order:

Awesome food
Less awesome food
Panel notes
Microphone usage thoughts
A reposting of all my tweets for the twitterless
Parties, vid and otherwise
A list of my book haul
Links!
Thoughts on Wiscon Chronicles 4 (short version: Buy it, read it)

Notes to myself for next year: Buy tickets earlier, for a shorter layover. Cleveland has free wifi, Chicago does not. Can leave a little earlier on Monday, say a 2-3pm flight. The smaller rolling bag can probably be taken as carryon even _with_ a big backpack, and save 50$, but have to buy fewer books or get them shipped.

Looking forward to reading everyone else's reports!
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Wiscon 35 - Report 1

To pick up where I left off..

The dog was a military dog and got to ride in the cabin with us! Way up front with the cool people. United is so silly. They call all these sorts of 'plus' and 'premiere' people for pre-boarding. Waste of freaking time. What's the advantage to boarding first anyway? So you get to sit in the plane longer than you sat in the airport. I understand if you have little kids or have mobility issues, because you need the time and space to get settled. But everyone else? You first class people? Fah on you!

It was a 2 hour and something flight, so we got drinks. And no snacks! Not a single peanut or pretzel! And the guy next to meet insisted on invading my space with his elbow. :P

Chicago had no free wifi. Grr.

I wandered around in search of food, until I discovered I wasn't encountering much variety. Overpriced mushroom and veggie sandwiches or overpriced yogurt. Hrrm. I almost gave up and got something at McDonald's. (Except I couldn't figure out what! Salad or.... did they have yogurt? I couldn't tell.) Then I walked a little bit more and lo and behold, an Annie's Pretzel. So I got a cinnamon and sugar pretzel.

There was an earlier flight, but I think it would've cost me 75$ to switch to it, and it was way off on another concourse. So I stuck with what I had. And then wondered if that was the best plan when I saw all the gates around me (I was at the head of a semicircle of gates) posting flight delays of an hour due to 'late aircraft arrival' and 'air traffic control'. That did not bode well! But when our flight eventually showed up on the board, since I had a 3 hour wait, another plane came in and went while I was waiting, it never got the Red Font of Delay. Though it did update our arrival time from 4:42 to 4:50.

There were 21 empty seats listed when I boarded. I thought I'd have an empty seat next to me. But then after like 5 minutes, they piled some more people in. So I shared a seat with a guy in a suit. Did that mean he was an air marshal?

Short flight. We actually arrived a bit earlier than our original scheduled time, so that was good. Then I got to baggage claim and lo and behold, my luggage was sitting all on its lonesome on a stopped belt. (I am really surprised more luggage doesn't just get stolen..) Turns out my luggage got that earlier flight!!

Called for the shuttle, was told one was waiting. Went out. It was empty! Shuttle driver said he was waiting for a flight crew. My flight crew came out! But they got in the other hotel's shuttle ahead of us. I didn't know the flight crew I ended up sharing a shuttle with. It was bizarrre. Because I'm used to having to wait for a shuttle and then cramming in with other Wiscon goers. Not a half-empty shuttle with a flight crew! Flight crews are kind of cool. They all had different accents, so you could tell they were from all over the States.

So I got to the hotel about an hour earlier than I expected and helped a bit with putting Access signs up. Then I had second thoughts about our hotel room being right above the street with construction. With big huge trucks on it! So I went back up and called the front desk and got a room change. This one has a lousy view. Picture the worst view you can, then swap it out for a rooftop. Because that's what the view is. With all the vents and ducts and fans and whatnot. But the construction isn't right below us. We are closer to the ice machine though, which woke me at 8am, but that's getting ahead of things.

I wandered over to the Reception and reading at A Room of One's Own and grabbed some much-needed cheese and fruit. Walked in a bit late to the reading of Joanna Russ's story. Looked a bit at the books on my way out, but did not buy. Yet.

Kater came in around 8ish, so we met up at Noodles & Co. A big bowl is big, and actually more than I wanted/needed. Pad thai with tofu, which is not listed as 'v', probably has fish sauce. When it comes to pad thai, well, it's worth some dead fish on my karma. (Or I could choose to think it's 'v' because of the eggs.)

Asked at the front desk if we could get a fridge, but was told all the fridges are in specific rooms. And I didn't think we needed to change rooms again. They don't need to think I'm fussy!

Got registered. Headed for the bar. Hung out with cool kids. Mostly other Clarion people (from other years/Clarions). Downloaded the Twitter app to my phone, so I could keep up with what's going on.

Came back after midnight. Ate more of my pad thai before it was completely inedible. Hope I don't get food poisoning, but you can't let all that pad thai go to waste! Even if it's not the best most awesome authentic pad thai ever.

And slept. Was woken up by a loud truck around 6 and was worried it was construction noise, but maybe it was just a garbage truck. Woken up again at 8 by the ice machine. But all in all, I got sufficient sleep.

Meeting Kater for food in a few, then going to the Gathering, then the Broad Universe Rapid-Fire Reading. So I need to rehearse my reading now.

More to come!
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Wiscon 35 - Report 0

Off to Wiscon! Well, sort of. I haven't left the state yet. Got to the gate with an hour and a half to spare. The shuttle picked me up 15 minutes early, and I was the only pickup. Paid 25$ to check my bag. Security wasn't so keen on my state ID without an expiration date. So I had to pull out my older other state ID.. with no expiration date. Also pulled out my city ID. Has to count for something, right? Guy called over a supervisor and then one other guy showed up too. Really should get myself a new state ID and/or a passport.

Took 4 bins for all my stuff.

Shopped around for the best price on water and decided it was Hudson News at $2.09. Bought some overpriced pretzels too, just in case we crash on a desert island in the middle of the US. I can then trade them with the locals for a tofu burger.

Hanging out at the gate. At least another 45 minutes before we board. They don't even have our flight listed on the board at the gate yet. Bunch of old people on this flight so far. And annoying coughing lady. And a muzzled dog who's mostly sleeping. Probably sedated already.

I'm flying to Chicago, where I get to sit in another airport for a couple of hours. Then I land in Madison at 4:40 local time. I should have just enough time to check in and go to the reception at A Room of One's Own. I'm also going to hunt up the rest of the Access team. And probably grab food at Noodles & Co, or somewhere else with people if I find people who want to eat when I do.

Looking forward to a good night's sleep tonight! *fingers crossed*
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My Wiscon Schedule

I totally forgot to post this! I didn't see too many other people doing it either, so that's my excuse, yea.

(Or did I post it and I forgot? hrrrm.)

Well, here it is again. Nyea.

Friday 4pm
Broad Universe Rapid-Fire Reading
Members of Broad Universe, an international organization dedicated to promoting and celebrating women in science fiction, fantasy, horror, and everything in between, will present snippets of available and on-going work. Expect the touching and irreverent, humorous and frightening, action-packed and emotional, poems and prose, and at least a few surprises!

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If you don't like readings, this is the one to go to. Nobody reads for more than about 3-5 minutes, so if you don't like what's being read, just wait!
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Sunday 10am
Sciency Fiction
What do you call fiction that has a lot of science but (gasp!) nothing speculative? Some call it LabLit, but not all science happens in labs. We propose the term "sciency fiction" to differentiate it from science fiction. The genre can include works as varied as The Green Glass Sea and The Big Bang Theory. What are some others? What is sciency fiction? Who enjoys it? Where does sciency fiction fit within the wider category of fiction? How can sciency fiction inform both the average reader and the reader of SF/F (who is, by definition, above average)?

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I don't know what panels I'm going to attend yet, but probably as many Tiptree ones as I can manage. I will not miss the Tiptree Auction. And I do have tickets to the dessert salon. I plan to buy a Tiptree Tshirt and a Con or Bust Tshirt.

And since this is my last chance to buy books before my book fast in June and July, I will be buying books. Reined in only by the weight of my luggage. (I don't see a point in shipping books. Might as well just buy them from Amazon in the first place if you're going to do that!)

I am also not into parties or dances, in general, but I want to check out the Vid Party and the Genderfloomp Dance Party.

If anyone wants to meet up for a lunch/dinner, ping me!
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Wiscon and Moon in the Media

I made the mistake(?) of Googling 'wiscon moon'. You restrict by blogs and you get both sides. You restrict it by news, and you get one side. Written by people who didn't bother to look at the other side. By people who think they know all they need to know about the issue and about Wiscon: "a relatively small convention held in a relatively small American city". Yea, because if ComicCon had done this, it would've been.. like.. better or something?

Anyway, reading annoyed me sufficiently to write this post. Why what Elizabeth Moon said was wrong and why it merited a rescinding of her GOH status. For anyone who may be Googling on the same subject and stumble across here.

- Her post conflated Muslims with immigrants. Because you know, no such thing as an American Muslim.

- She said Muslims should speak out and denounce the terrorists and their actions. Just, so, y'know, people don't think they agree with the terrorists.

- She said all immigrants should assimilate. Assimilate to /what/, I don't know. (More on this in a later post, because I've been ruminating on it.)

- She hurt people with her words. She hurt Muslims, she hurt immigrants (and not just immigrants to the US), she hurt Native Americans. I'm not saying she hurt all Muslims, all immigrants, all Native Americans. She hurt people in the greater Wiscon community, to whom her words mattered more than if Average Robin in the Blogosphere had said them.

- And don't kid yourself that her words weren't at all racist. You can say there's white immigrants and white Muslims all you want, but I really don't think white Anglo-American ones are who she had in mind.

- When some of the rest of us saw what she said, though we weren't directly hurt, we perceived how her words were damaging. Then we started to see the results. And we started to see people leaving the Wiscon community. And as I said before, that hurts all of us.

- She not only closed comments on her lj entry. She DELETED them. That's not how you conduct good social business on the internet. You can moderate your comments -- delete spam, delete profanity, delete things that are off-topic, delete anything that goes against your (posted) personal policy. You can close your comments right at the second you post, or at some later date. But it's extremely rude and, in this case, silencing, to delete all the comments. Especially as it wasn't just a byproduct of removing the original post.

- She didn't apologize.

And, yes, at some point the decision to remove her GOH status was not about her. Because the discussion had moved beyond her. It was about confirming Wiscon's identity as a feminist convention. It was about not losing vast swaths of the community.

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And that is what I think about all this. There are things I left out. There are quite likely things I got wrong, or not quite right.

Before you go writing your news story or quoting things I said, why don't you go read some more? You know.. a little more than one article, one blog post, the original post, and the Wiscon website.

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