Sunday was the best day by far. The first panel I attended was by Muncie-area author Casey Glanders, called “Writing Worlds: Writing and Publishing Superhero Fiction.” It was basically a lecture on self-publishing for other independent authors. But I got the opportunity to expand on some of the library resources he touched on. That was kinda cool.
The Steampunk and Comics panel should have been amazing. The presenter was in costume, his presentation was professional, and it was full of the history and development of steampunk as a genre, as well as the divergence of the steampunk timeline. But some kid sat down a couple rows in front of me streaming the whole presentation through his cellphone on a selfie stick. Which really wouldn’t have bothered me if not for the fact he kept commenting to his audience. I got up and asked security to speak to him, which they did, and he left. But immediately afterward, the guy behind me decided it was a great time to take a phone call. Didn’t take it outside, didn’t hurry to get off the phone. Just sat there chatting away. That ruined it for me. Old lady, remember? I couldn’t concentrate, so we left to watch more Freestyle D&D.
Would have liked to have seen the voice acting panel, “Voice Acting: Everything You Want to Know.” I wanted to know things. But there were scheduling conflicts. Also, “Writers: Worldbuilding Workshop” coincided with “Black to the Future: An Exploration of of Minorities in the Space Time Continuum.” I earned my creative writing degree at least three years ago, and I’m still put off from workshops. So I chose the latter. And I’m so glad I did. It was easily the best panel of the whole weekend.
Did you know it was thing on Twitter not long ago (probably during the whole uproar over a black actress being cast as Hermione) to completely recast Harry Potter with people of color? Why wasn’t this all over library lists and groups? Why didn’t we all latch onto this? Granted I’m no Harry Potter fan, but why was I just hearing of this?
But that was only one part of the discussion. The panel runs an independent media channel on YouTube and had very insightful things to say. They engaged the audience in a meaningful way, beginning with the question, “When was the first time you saw yourself truly represented in mainstream media, and who was that character you identified with?” and ending with the question of what we could all do to improve representation of minorities.
I would have liked to say the highlight of the day was (Gabrielle from Xena) Renee O’Connor’s Q&A. I mean, Jonathan Frakes AND Renee O’Connor both at the same convention? So cool. But as great as they were, they still couldn’t top that last panel.