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3 September 2002

Memo to those frustrated with September 11 retrospectives on TV: writing entire columns or lengthy journal/weblog posts about how you think it should be observed instead is just as tiresome as the TV retrospectives. Your point is not unique. Please make it concisely.

Ahem. Sorry. Don't mind me. I'm just frustrated by the newspaper. And the internet.

I don't know if I mentioned it, but it got warm this weekend. Now nobody who was here for WorldCon will ever believe me that it's cool and overcast here all summer. Sigh. Oh well. We might have to turn on the AC, even. Astonishing.

Oh, just a note, as many people have asked: fen is the plural of fan. Like men is the plural of man. So if I say there was a great influx of fen, that's a bunch of science fiction fans mobbing in somewhere. Like wherever Neil Gaiman might be, for example.

Our last day of WorldCon was good, mostly. The first panel was "Writing the Synopsis," and it was largely useless. There was some very low-level stuff like "use 12-point type, black type on white paper." Uh, great, yeah. "Don't wrap your synopsis around a chocolate bar and send it to Atlanta in the summer." Really? Gosh, why not? But I did get a run-down of how Ashley Grayson crits synopses and answers to a few interesting questions, so it was not a total loss. That panel was packed to the gills, though, and while I'm not sorry I went, I might not have shoehorned myself into the room if I'd known people were going to be saying things like, "I'm afraid if I send my book out someone's going to want to steal it."

Ran around briefly like the proverbial headless chicken, and then I found Alec and we found the Creating Anthologies panel, which was kind of cool, fairly interesting. A good mix of people, although I wish Kathryn Cramer had just gone up and used the mike, because she had interesting stuff to say and was qualified and all.

Then we headed down to the Kaffee Klatch with Patrick and Teresa Nielsen Hayden. They were very, very much fun, and Timprov and I both had some story ideas that ensued from random phrases. It was good to have a feel for their personalities and to see that people whose work I respect are also otherwise interesting and decent people. It seems to work that way often, but I'm told it's important not to confuse the work and the people. It seems like a good policy in general, if the person doesn't make it impossible with his/her behavior and attitudes towards his/her work.

We had a late lunch with Thomas, introducing him to the wonder of garlic fries (for good or ill), and then we came home. Talked to the folks, talked to C.J. Tried to get things straightened up around here somewhat. Caught up on some e-mails, but not all of them. I was in a very strange frame of mind, and I'm not sure it's been entirely dispelled this morning.

Oh, and I finally met up with Michael Rawdon on the very last day of the con, just as we were leaving the convention center. He looks like a scale model of Peter Scherbring, one of my astronomy lab partners from senior year and an all-around nice guy. A bit bigger than Michael. But when I looked over and saw Michael sitting in a chair, I had a moment of thinking it was Pete. Strange. (Pete, like many of my physics compatriots, was cool enough that I wonder how and what he's doing now, but wasn't a close enough friend at the time that we e-mailed or anything. Ah well. These things happen.)

So. I need to get my brain back into short stories and the Not The Moose Book, and I need to start the research for the new contract book on Chinese immigration. There is much to do, and I'm fairly eager to do it. There is also, sadly, much to do around the house. But I can do that, as well.

You know what was one of the strangest things about WorldCon, one of the most unexpectedly strange? I wore shoes all day every day, for five days straight.

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