Wednesday, April 22, 2015

JordanCon 7 Recap*

All righty, folks, I’m finally home from my yearly trek to JordanCon... maybe... I think... Physically I am but once again I’ve left my brain in Atlanta, I’m sure of it.

JordanCon—for those of you who don’t know—is a small(ish) literary convention in Atlanta... and while that might sound like a stuffy description, it is anything BUT stuffy.

We like our books, but we also like our fun, too. (Read: we party HARD.)

I’m struggling to write this post because Facebook is so damn distracting... I’ve uploaded my cluster of JordanCon photos and am being bombarded with notifications, along with following con-related postings, and messaging friends to continue conversations that began at con.

Oh so distracting...

And, like every year, it can partly be blamed on being fried mentally, and partly because I wish JordanCon wasn’t over, and partly because all those posts represent one thing: a varied con experience.

Cosplaying beasties and Mat friends. Clockwise from top left: myself, Zachary Stevens, Marisa Grooms, Sophie Decaudin in front.
I know I had a blast, and the great thing about con is that everyone’s experience is slightly different... so now I want to know what everyone else did to give them face-splitting grins despite burnout, too.

Makes for a pretty distracting and day-dreamy time-suck.

Time to add my distraction to the pile! (Heh.)

Lucky for me, despite my shitty memory I’m pretty bloody snap happy with my camera (if you count my cell phone I technically had three with me). So photos, along with notes keyed into my cell’s memo pad, are going to remind me exactly what transpired over what was (yet again) a five day sleepless bender... hold onto your shawls, folks, this is one photo-heavy post.

Memorable JordanCon Moments:

- First and foremost, finally sharing JordanCon with my WoT-loving cousin... Despite feeling like a heel for ditching her to work my volunteer hours.

- Meeting new members of our JordanCon tribe, as always (Jayne, Caleb, Afonso, Heather, Tim—I’m looking at you guys! Please come back and play with us again!)

Clockwise from top left: My cousin Mandy and I; artist Amy Romanczuk decoding Pysanky designs for JordanCon Art Show Director April Moore; Richard Fife with Robert Jordan's widow and head of Bandersnatch Inc., Harriet McDougal; bottom left: silliness that results when you walk away from your camera...

- Witnessing my friend R.Fife propose to his ladylove. Congratulations you two crazy kids! May your love and relationship continue to grow with you through the years!

- Working with all the talented artists at the art show... Todd Lockwood, Melissa Gay, Edsel Arnold, Michael and Paul Bielaczyc, Amanda Makepeace, Ariel Burgess, Joe O’Hara, Missy Lindsey, Amy Romanczuk, Sam Flegal... and really too many to list here. Talent simply oozes from all their pores, and it’d be absolutely disgusting if they weren’t so freaking delightful and gracious. Our wee show is growing and it’s oh so exciting to watch it happen!

- Having a moment to chat with Harriet McDougal and scrambling to key her book title recommendations into my cell’s memo app. HARRIET MCDOUGAL RECOMMENDED BOOKS TO ME, PEOPLE!

With great power comes great shenanigans.
- Being honoured with a letter from the Amyrlin Seat à la Supergirls (Elayne, Nynaeve, and Egwene) at the moment I set foot in the hotel, with the interests of facilitating shenanigans. Though admittedly aside from borrowing Rand on the Run for an impromptu photo shoot I didn’t use said letter. (Though that will absolutely change in the future. I’m a planner, heh. Long term plotting ahoy!)

- Winning third place in the Costume Contest for Nargella the female Trolloc... So proud. That’s the fourth year in a row coming home with some kind of award).

Momma and child.
- Illustrating the stellar parenting skillz of Trollocs, and purchasing a Trolloc baby OF MY OWN from my talented JordanCon pillow friend and artist, Missy Lindsey. (Mr Lannis said I was to purchase no more artwork, but surely he meant no wall art, right? Imma need a wrap to go baby wearing... I foresee my rep in this small town only getting more interesting. ::snort::)

Trollocs are natural mothers.

- Being able to share knowledge and experience with others—from details of how my Trolloc was made to helping to run a workshop on making plushies with my JCon girlfriend Missy Lindsey.

- Participating in a raunchy mad libs rewriting of Jack O’ the Shadows led by tWoTcast... I never in a million years thought I’d hear Harriet McDougal—of all people—say the word grundlebox. SO WORTH IT.

Clockwise from top left: a Trolloc baby of my very own!; hanging out with Team Jordan's Alan Romanczuk; Rand on the Run and I--oh, the power of a letter.

- Speaking of tWoTcast, helping the resident JordanCon master bartender Chip Moore serve during the live podcast recording with Alan Romanczuk. That man had a portable bar. A PORTABLE BAR, PEOPLE!

- Sharing a seat on the Wheel of Time After Dark panel with four lovely ladies, and laughing so hard I cried, then learning later we successfully (drunkenly?) entertained a track room full house.

Art Show director April Moore--one of the very best reasons to volunteer.

- Volunteering. Hands down, the best choice I ever made years ago was to lend a hand, and it adds so much joy to my JordanCon experience every year, it truly does. I can’t recommend it enough.

- Chilling with my badass blogger girl Leigh Butler and her crazy crew (John was truly rockin’ out with his cock out on Saturday night, ha!—ceramic rooster joke, peeps, no panic!).

L to R: Mandy Beck as a Cairhienen Noblewoman and Lauren O'Hara as a sexy Accepted; Seth Lockhart and Megan Fordham as Kaladin and Shallan; Paul Bielaczyc as the Ice King and winner of first prize in the costume contest.

- Walking around the lobby snuggling an eerily lifelike werewolf baby and scaring Muggles (non-con-attendees).

- Hearing the flattering news that Dim Horizon Studio would love to photograph my Nargella the Trolloc costume on location given the chance (unfortunately Atlanta's not my usual hangout). I do so admire their work, and am oh so tickled and honoured by their excitement.

- Learning that wearing a wedding dress to a dance party will result in the seemingly paradoxical response from the male populace: they will hit on would-be brides like there’s no tomorrow. Or at least, that’s what I hear on good authority, heh.

L to R: Sophie Decaudin and Marisa Grooms as Aelfinn and Eelfinn; Phillip Edwards as an Asha'man; Pinky Shear as a Geisha.

- Riding an impromptu make-believe Small World gondola at approximately 3am with Aubree (you guys play some weird games, peeps, and I love you for it. And Africa was truly sad... hahaha!)

- Hearing my buddy John Strangeway (who cosplays Perrin, and who was absent this year—pffft, jerk!), will be the Toastmaster for JordanCon 8! Squee!

 - Hanging at the Dead Dog Party after JordanCon wrapped up late Sunday afternoon. Which equates to finally having a chance to sit and chat with friends after the frenzied fun of con... and the delightful honour of being toasted by James Atkins (A.K.A. Beer Mat)... the exact words are lost in my post-con brain, but (paraphrased), it was for achieving what anyone would’ve deemed nigh impossible: pretty much giving the entire con a collective hard on for a Trolloc. (Yay, me!)

L to R: Brit Lewis as a futuristic Aes Sedai; Bob Glover as a Tinker; Author Blue Cole with his latest work.
And last but certainly not least:

- Experiencing JordanCon in actuality and at the same time vicariously through my newbie con-attending cousin’s eyes, which only reaffirmed the stellar quality of my collective con family (I love you all!).

That’s all I’ve got for now, folks... time to catch up on some sleep, if I can wrench my eyes off of Facebook and stop giggling at the post-con silliness that abounds therein. And I need to get costuming... less than a year until JCon 2016... and you can bet I've already got plans...

* I wish I had a fancier title, but my brain is fried. Wonder how THAT happened... huh.