luckykaa: (Travel)
One of the things I miss about being a  contractor is having vast amounts of cash roll in every week. There are quite a few things I'd like to do this year. But I do have to budget for it. I also need to budget holiday time. Not sure what I should pick. I already have a few days in a cabin in the Lake District - this was a gift from my parents via BuyAGift.com. This is bought and paid for. Should be fun.

I want to visit a country I've never been to before. The choice I have to make is whether to do this by going to worldcon Worldcon, or a birthday holiday.

Worldcon

I was a supporter of the bid. I do have supporting mebership already. I would quite like to visit Finland. Lots of friends will no doubt be there, and I want to encourage non-US cons. The downside is [livejournal.com profile] flickums isn't particularly keen. We're not joined at the hip, and she has no problem with me going on my own, but I would like to go away somewhere together.

Birthday

Birthday Holiday - Previously if I've been to a Worldcon, it was the same weekend as my birthday. Sadly not this year. I like to go away on my birthday. Since 2006, I've only spent 2 birthdays in England. Granted, a couple of those I didn't really do anything, but this time I'll have a flickums!

I actually have no idea where I want to go for my birthday. Rome sounds nice. So does Venice. Perhaps I'd like somewhere a little quieter and more out of the way though. Also would like a beach! Essentially i want somewhere as awesome as Dubrovnik was... That said, I have a pending demand to visit a friend in Canada and I would like to visit.  Of course if I do Worldcon, I always have the option for a weekend trip somewhere nearby. Maybe a long weekend in the Azores or Madeira, or even just a weekend in Paris or Dublin. I'd really like to go to Grenada or St. Lucia, or maybe Nassau - somewhere in the Caribbean with a decent chunk of history. If it really appeals I can find a ship and become a pirate!

Other Conventions

Am sort of keen on Clone Club... Downside is I do have certain issues with Starfury. But I would love to spend a weekend geeking with other Orphan Black people, and all the Starfury muppets I know. Also there's Vampire Ball which has always been a lot of fun.

Can't do all of these. I need to pick and choose.
luckykaa: (steamy)
The whole Cosplay and hall costumes thing isn't as big here as the more visual media oriented but there are plenty of people in costumes milling about. I went for my Dread Pirate Roberts look again, because it's easy and stylish, and only gets confused with Zorro 25% of the time. Also went for the Indiana Jones look the next day because he's also stylish and the costume works with a bag.

Someone chatted to me and said he'd considered dressing as Indiana Jones (and Austin Powers) but didn't think it would be allowed. That struck me as very odd. I looked around and could not find a costume police officer anywhere. But it is an odd viewpoint. I've seen people at conventions wear larp gear, regency clothing, random wild outfits and more. I could probably think of a few that weren't even remotely science fiction or fantasy.

There were some rather nice outfits. The previously mentioned hooded figures warning us about the forbidden dog park; The Young Ones; Lara Croft; Earth force Officer... Also the usual plethora of Star Trek shirts.

The Masquerade

This was a lot bigger than any of the previous Worldcon or Eastercon Masquerades. Good to see! Also the quality was very good!

Some highlights:

Emma's awesome Kimono
Doctor Who Monsters
Coliseum
A Glamorous Evening of Galactic Domination

Actually felt the winning entry was a little dull. Yes, it was beautifully made, the choreography was good, and the lighting worked, and there was a lot of effort, but it lacked a sense of fun that the others had.

Felt the Minotaur (Coliseum) was my favourite in the show. Well made, exciting production and a brilliant concept.
luckykaa: (Robot)
(There are some sorta-spoilers for the book if you're particularly spoiler phobic)

One of the big worldcon events was a production of Tim Powers' "The Anubis Gates". An excellent book about time travel, body swapping, beggars guilds, ancient magic and more.

And the acting was excellent. The body swapping aspect was handled mostly by changing accents. I have no idea whether the guy who played Doyle was American or British.

What I'm less sure about is whether it actually works as a play. It's a pretty complex plot with a lot of threads. I'm not sure of the body swapping stuff would have been all that obvious if I hadn't read the book. The entire Horrabin subplot was just bizarre and shrunk so much that it made no sense even though I had read the book!
luckykaa: (Wolf)

Registration

So, I missed the opening ceremony because the queue was crazy long (also because I had to go back and fetch my passport). As it turned out, I didn't need my passport because I was recognised by the person on the reg desk. There were complaints about the length of this.

Fan Village

This has had a lot of praise and a little bit of criticism. We had a lovely large area filling a hall, with a bar in one corner, a games room in the other, a "Village Green" in the middle, tends for other conventions around it, a library and a fan activities tent. I always like it when cons have a decent fan hangout space. Putting so much in one place is really nice. Not quite so sure about using it for parties. I read someone saying they rather liked it and felt that room parties were rather too cliquey, which is a fair point. I do rather like the pirate vibe the room parties had which really wasn't here. The other problem was that the disco/dance area was way too far away. Different floor down an uninviting passageway at the rear end of another hall.

Excel Centre

Mixed opinions on this. It's a shame that such a large venue doesn't have a proper auditorium. There are raked seats at the back, and plenty of space for chairs but I found the SECC and Melbourne a lot more inviting. Also felt that the access to upstairs conference rooms was a little cramped. Only one escalator, and no stairs. Was nice that there were reasonably affordable places to eat (all fast food but a notch above McDonalds).

Hugos

Retro Hugos were a lot of fun. There's a quirky rule in the Hugos that if a worldcon  50 years or 75 years (or presumably 100 years) earlier didn't give out Hugos, then a Worldcon can have a Retro Hugo ceremony. It was staged as a radio production, with interruptions of a newsflash from an alien invasion, a musical introduction, dancers and advertisements for cold-b-gone (or something like that) for dealing with the con crud. The con crud and alien invation were neatly tied together at the end. Rather unfortunate that because of Hugo rules, Superman wasn't eligible (There was only only one nomination), but it did win a special committee award because Superman, dammit!

Actual Hugos seemed a little bit bland. Not nearly as much humour as previous ones I've been to. Nowhere near as witty and clever as Kim Newman and Paul McAuley 9 years ago. Also tech seemed to be cocking up a lot of the time, playing two doctor who trailers on top of each other, hard to read captions, and random stuff flickering on the main screen.

It seems that the Hugo for "Best Dramatic Presentation: Doctor Who" (aka: "Best Dramatic Presentation:Short Form") has been replaced by the "Hugo for best Dramatic Presentation: Game Of Thrones". My bet is "The Watchers On The Wall" will win next year.

Plays and shows

They had quite a few of these.

Captain Tartan was just silly. Hilarious, with lots of fan references. Felt like it was put together in a bit of a rush but I enjoyed it.

The Anubis gates needs way more of a writeup than I have space for. Will get to the Masquearade later as well.

The Girl Genius radio play was really funny! Had a really good radio play feel about it and was really well paced and presented.

Panels

Went to a few of these. Nightvale one was intriguing. The one on worldbuiding for RPGs was pointless.Felt the panellists hadn't read the panel synopsis. I wanted some tips for building a world. Or building a system. The "Education and training of a young protagonist" was much better although I felt it missed something. The thing is, I can't think what it was missing.

Panel on Hugo for Dramatic Presentation (short form) was way too crowded, which was a shame. I was told it was very good. The long form panel was pretty good though.

"What do you mean you don't watch" was a good idea. 3 shows. People pitch as to why you should watch them. Kickstarter panel was informative but a little too short.

luckykaa: (steamy)
Worldcon is big! Really Big! And lots of things happened and I have no idea how to approach it. I don't want to do an "I did this, then I did that" and I don't want to switch to by habitual review mode! Because it's not really about that.

I spent so much time sitting around the bar. I met lots of people I hadn't seen since Redemption 2013! And some people I hadn't seen since Nineworlds who I was just as happy to see! And at least one person I hadn't seen since before Maelstrom ended.

I went to the retro Hugos! They did a crossover with War of the Worlds! I'm so glad I went to them. Felt the actual Hugos were a bit dull (grumble grumble could have had Jonathan Ross pwesenting).

My awesome friend ([livejournal.com profile] emmaroberts) was in the Masqeurade and won a prize because she made the most gorgeous Kimono. I really loved [livejournal.com profile] lordofthewheel's entry. Actually thought it was better than the master entries, especially with the presentation. Maybe I'm biased.

Chatted to a Nanny Ogg impersonator who had a cuddly Greebo.

Dressed as The Dread Pirate Roberts (or maybe another dread pirate - nut certainly a man in black) and 3 people thought it was Zorro. Actually 5 but two of them were in response to by bitching about it on twitter. Also have decided that a mask is the most useless means to conceal your identify ever! Everyone recognised me! Okay, I wasn't in disguise so I don't care, but Buttercup must have been blind not to recognise her true love.

And there were plays! I saw most of them.

Kinda took me a while to get into con-headspace. I think this may be some general issue I have with capital-F Fandom. I don't think I really felt in con space until the dead dog party, by which time it was too late. Can we go round again?
luckykaa: (Default)
Well, I finally know what I'm doing at work.  Now I just have to work out how to do it.  2 weeks have whizzed by.

Completely failed to book trapeze lesson in Bristol. Doh!  Oh well.  There's always next month.  Can still do Hangleton.  AS long as I'm hanging upside-down once a week I'm happy.

New accommodation remains reasonably pleasant. Don't think I could live here.  Finding the knives disturbingly blunt.  Couldn't murder a soul with one of these.

Now feel it's safe to book Australia holiday.  I'm gonna need to work out details. 
luckykaa: (Default)
It seems pretty much inevitable that Worldcon 2010 will be in Melbourne.  It made me realise I really want to go there.  I then realised I don't reallyneed an excuse and could go sooner than 3 years time.

So I've been looking at other options.  While it's possible to get there for £500 or so, this would mean 22 hours stuck in an economy class seat.  One option is an upgrade to business class.  That still seems like 22 hours stuck in a seat even if it does happen to be marginally more comfortable.  After a 12 hour flight from Japan I was almost tearing at the walls to get out. 

The other option is a round the world ticket.  And these seem like a bargain.  Cheap at twice the price (Tend to hover around the £1000-2000 mark), they let you stop off at half a dozen places along the way - I can probably just about cope with seven 6-8 hour flights.  And I can easily save that much up in the next couple of years.  I could afford it right now if I had job security. 

So it's just a matter of deciding where to stop off along the way.  Where's nice between here and Australia?  That would include just about everywhere*.

*Exceptions are most of Africa and North Asia.
luckykaa: (Default)
Went to blogging panel. Touched on fanfic and the associated vocabulary being applied to mainstream lit.
"Who's Tolkein's Mary Sue?"
"Gandalf!"
"Yeah, Okay..."

Zygote Panel was hijacked by Zygote games. Looked pretty good. Educational games that provide education AND gameplay. Scored a free game from it too.

Closing Ceremony followed. And now it's over. Sigh... I want another one..
luckykaa: (Default)
If you wear a badge saying "It's my 31st birthday. Give me hugs", you get lots of hugs. I was totally shameless in accepting them.

And I got presents. I got a box of Arizona candy and a Koala:)

Masquerade

Sep. 2nd, 2007 09:21 am
luckykaa: (Default)
Masquerade was running a bit late. Not even the Japanese can get that to run on time.

I need somewhere better than the lj scrapbook to put my photos. Any recommendations would be appreciated.

Only 12 entries. Fantastic Sword display over deliberation time. Nabbed some video before deciding Continuous wind would work better.

Photos will be posted when I get back.



Also wasn't using flash so results are going to be variable.
luckykaa: (Default)
It's my Birthday. I'm making sure everyone knows this.

I celebrated with a lie-in then went on a breakfast hunt. The Japanese are excelent bakers so a bakery seemed good place for lunch.

Went to a panel on copyright. Something of a geek hobby horse these days. Bit of an echo chamber really. "Copyright is weighted too much in corporate interests, M'kay." but fairly interesting anyway.

Bought a Ghibli DVD. Has English subs. Hopefully done properly but Engrish subs would be amusing. Got grabbed for an interview by some guy with a camera. Now off to Masquerade.

So far I've taken 211 Photos. How did we cope when cameras used film?

Hugo Awards

Sep. 1st, 2007 12:24 pm
luckykaa: (Default)
Hosted by George Takei & Nozomi Ohmori.
And the winners are: )
luckykaa: (Default)
Parties last night were fun (and the ladies really dig da ears). Decided event 1 would be sleep. Managed to get to con in time for Regency dance.

Actually didn't do a lot fn con stuff today. The 120 minute panels mean that it's only possible to do 5 items in a day anyway. Last item today is the Hugos.

Can't go without seeing that
luckykaa: (japan)
I've been here 2 days now. Why am I only now getting Jet lag?

Found the place to register. Bit of a queue.

Volunteered as timekeeper at talk on future of computers. Interesting talk I was tempted to ask detailed questions about Cell vs. Transputer but felt it was probably unfair on the (small) section of the audience that was less techy.

Opening ceremony started well. MCed by some well known voice actress. The mayor of Yokahama made an appearance (brought in on rickshaw) and translation went wrong near the end.

Found a group of Swedish fans and joined them for dinner at Vietnamese restaurant where they played the easy listening version of Boomtown Rats' "Tell Me Why", much to the disdain of the Swedes.

Finished with party 1. The lightweight bid parties.
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