Some reflections on Loncon 3

Loncon 3 was my first big convention. I attended Friday to Sunday. Needless to say I had a great time. The only down-side was the fierce competition between “must attend” sessions. I missed so much that I desperately wanted to see. Ah well! A sign of a successful Worldcon, I guess.

One of the great pleasures for me was chatting to editors who’ve published my stories over the years, including Pete Crowther (PS Publishing, formerly editor of PostScripts, which is now in the highly capable hands of Nick Gevers); Henry Gee (Nature Futures, former) and Colin Sullivan (Nature Futures, current). I also enjoyed a brief chats with Luigi Petruzzelli, editor of Italian SF magazine Quasar, who has accepted my story The English Dead for translation and reprinting, and Ian Whates (NewconPress), whose anthologies I’d love to appear in one day (unsubtle¬† hint).

Some panels I particularly enjoyed: Lablit, SF and the Great War, anything to do with the sadly missed GoH Iain Banks.

Some readings I loved: Aliette de Bodard–a dear friend and great writer; Christopher Priest–one of my writing heroes. To interact with him, however briefly, about Spitfires was… Well, only aviation buffs will understand that one.

The Hugo Awards: slickly and concisely done. I did vote in a few categories, picked the short story category winner. All the fiction category winners were thoroughly well deserved. In fact a splendid roster of winners overall, showcasing the new, the diverse, the important. Those clinging to the old can go whinge in the corner, as far as I’m concerned. Something¬† of a shame that Doctor Who didn’t win the Best Dramatic Presentation Short Form category in its 50th year, but having several nominations, it suffered from Split Vote Syndrome.

There were some great panels for those like me who obsess about archive television: Missing Believed Wiped (Dick Fiddy for the BFI), The (Doctor Who) Restoration Team. I was disappointed that the showing of Nigel Kneale’s The Big Crunch was cancelled due to its non-availability in a projectable format, but the SciFi London people replaced it with the wonderful Red Shift (a superb Alan Garner novel filmed for Play for Today). Good work, folks!

But the most fun to be had was simply chatting to friends old and new, which is exactly as it should be.

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