My trip to Chicago was fairly uneventful. I managed to wake up on time at quarter of seven, but without much sleep since I'm used to going to bed around four or so, and couldn't get to sleep at one thirty like I tried. La Guardia didn't leave a great impression on me; I had to go through security again and the roof was leaking everywhere (they had these big bins on the floor to catch the water). My flight from La Guardia to Chicago was packed, and I barely had a place to put my laptop case. Baggage claim at O'Hare was confusing as there were several converyors that were out of sight from the main bunch, which of couse was where my suitcase was. Annika had told me that she had taken a shuttle from the airport to the hotel, so I tried and failed to find it, and after wasting half an hour I just took a cab which was slightly expensive.
Annika and I went to say hi to Budi, my uncle's partner who works in the Hilton we're staying at. Not too long after that, Staci arrived, and we then went out to this gas station mart to get soda and snacks. They ID'd me for using a credit card so I doubt I'll be going back there (lol). Kaci finally got here, then we went to the restaurant in the lobby to get some dinner. Apparently I was the only one without travel woes. Annika's flight was delayed because of the tropical storm in Texas. Staci had a 23 hour bus ride from Winnipeg, and then she spent hours wandering in the hotel lobby looking for Kaci. And Kaci was late because of some trailer crash on an interstate highway, so her buses kept getting delayed, she missed a connection, and ended up having to take a flight from Indiannapolis.
We went to the Wizard Rock (Wrock) concert after we had dinner. I guess it's a whole other big sector of fandom. I had downloaded a couple songs a while ago, but I've never really been that into it. I think it was just starting when I was sort of phazing out of fandom. We saw the Remus Lupins, Draco and the Malfoys, and the Harry Potters. When you don't know anything about the music (and it's not anything to write home about anyways) the only redeeming factor is the attractiveness of the boys. I really liked the guitarist from Draco and the Malfoys. It was especially nice at the end of the Harry and the Potter's hour when a bunch of other performers, including the Malfoys bunch came up on stage, and he and the lead singer of the Potters shared a mike. Now that's some Harry/Draco I'd be into...
I had not just one dream last night, but two. In the first one, a meteor was about to hit earth. I had overslept, and a lot of people in my neighborhood had already left. I knew I wouldn't be able to get to safety because I couldn't drive the car. I remember the light and feeling of heat from it were particularly impressive. I ended up hiding in a train tunnel, and kicking in a side door in the tunnel (sort of like that scene with the mother and kids in Independence Day). I'm not sure if I died or not, but the rest of that dream was me looking at everything that was destroyed.
My second dream was that a coyote was on the rooftops of some suburban place, and I was climbing and jumping after it.
Anyways, registration went smoothly, and once we got out I met Kerry which was awesome. Annkia and Kaci weren't really sure what they wanted to do, and Kerry with a bunch of other HP slashers were going off to the H/D meetup, so I followed them. It was in the sun at Milennium Park, so I got a decent sunburn.
I met a ton of people at the meetup. I remember a lot of the names from some obscure corner of fandom. It's tough to rack my brains now after not being in fandom for so long. But anyways it was pretty cool.
After the meetup I went to the vendor room and got some nice earrings that I'll probably give to my sister for Christmas, because she's impossible to shop for. Well, probably not, but I hate doing gift shopping and they were cool. I'm really not into all the wands and crap the other vendors were selling. The art gallery had a lot of tripperfunster
's crazy shit in there.
We were split into houses for the welcoming dinner, which didn't really work because we sat with who we wanted to anyways. My head of house is the guitarist from Harry and the Dracos that I liked, so yay. Trying to find a seat there made me realize that the slash part of fandom at least is fairly clique-y. It doesn't help that I've never really been into the big pairings like H/D or Snarry.
Me and Kaci decided to go back to the room instead of going to the Trivia event. Instead we went back to the room and were soon joined by Staci. We watched BASEketball which was amazingly slashy. Then we read quite a bit of Kaci's Matt/Trey fic that she's writing.
The breakfast at the hotel is quite nice. The first roundtable that I wanted to go to was full, so I sat in on a presentation of HP Ohio, which was kind of random, but whatever. dacro
and I were able to get into mijan
's Using Fanfic for Sexual Exploration which was fun. The discussion had a lot to do about the psychology behind writing erotic slash fanficiton. For me, it's obviously something that I want to experience myself, because I can be part of a male/male relationship, unlike the majority of slash authors. The roundtable rooms were tiny and I think twice the amount of people who could actually fit into the room wanted to be there for the discussion. There was a bit of a heated argument with the Terminus security about occupancy limitations and fire code laws, but it got resolved fortunately. I will say that they weren't thinking when they made the roundtables be in rooms for only 40 or so people (I think it might have been even less than that).
Next I went to a roundtable about What post-canon details Rowling keeps giving mean to people who want to stay true to canon. The movies also took a central role in the discussion. I found it odd that the moderator didn't really participate at all, given that Mijan had so much to say and prompt everyone on in the previous one.
I was going to have lunch with Budi and my uncle Mark, but Budi had a meeting that was running late, which was just as well because I wasn't really all that hungry, and that let me be on time for Mijan's roundtable about Sadistic Authors and the Characters We Love (To Torment). She tried to make the discussion less about BDSM type fic and more about actual suffering, which was difficult because the former holds such a central role in a lot of fanfic.
Next I went to the Harry/Draco panel and listened to their blasphemies (lol) about why the two should be together. It was interesting hearing a logical explaination about it and I think I can finally understand the pairing. I did meet a fellow WoWer there as well, stitchesandlace
After the panel I met up with my uncle and Budi at a bar where we just sort of hung out for a while. My uncle was already talking to two ladies, and between the four of them they ordered about $120 worth of wine and champagne. The offered me a ride back, which I didn't refuse, so I got to see their new Porsche SUV.
Finally was the Snarry meetup, which was fun despite me not knowing many people and sitting at a rather secluded table. What I still can't get over is that a lot of slash fans are much older than I expected. Maybe that's because I'm used to partaking such slashy activities with my friends my age.
When I got back to the hotel, I showed Kaci and Staci a ton of my yaoi collection, and got to rant about all the different anime's I've watched.
I sat in on a bit of the newsletter discussion. What surprised me is that they were very supportive of people self reccing themselves to the editors. I'm not sure if I'd actually do that unless I have a piece that's already getting some considerable feedback. I'm not sure, I just think that it'd be like a bit arrogant to do that, but it's tempting because my work doesn't have a sizable audience at all.dacro
's panel about writing character voice was really interesting. She talked about all the different registers (formal, informal, intimate etc.) I have no idea about how to approach writing fanfic in any sort of technical or academic way, so it was quite enlightening.
The Harry/Ron lunch meetup was a lot of fun. I got to meet the mod of harry_and_ron
who was here from Bolivia, and it was just lots of general awesomeness. I started drawing a fanart (forgoeing eating my food) to commemorate it, which should be posted soon.
There was no programming I wanted to see until the evening, so Kaci and I did our own thing until it was time to dinner. We went to a Chinese cafe that Budi had reccomended that was really good. I got to go to Mijan's fanfic reading even though I was a bit late. She lost her voice, but everyone wanted to hear more so we migrated to the 20th floor lobby and then eventually her hotel room and I went through the process of warming up to Harry/Draco because her fic is amazing.
Finally was the GoF viewing with Staci and Kaci which was absolute madness. Lots of David Tennant fangirling, rampant shipping, and Emma-eyebrow-bashing ensued. I couldn't hear any of the movie, but that was okay. I'm still confused and annyoed that they didn't put subtitles on.