Posted by: culturescouse | August 10, 2015

Nine Worlds 2015

So Nine Worlds is over for another year. As it did last year, the convention has re-inspired me to actually do something with this blog, but we’ll see how long that resolution lasts this year! Once again though, I loved it. It’s so brilliant to have a weekend with like-minded people, covering such a wide range of topics, and run by a group of people so committed to making it an inclusive, safe space for everyone. It’s true that it doesn’t always work – there was some inappropriate tweeting on Saturday – but I honestly believe that the team are willing to learn from their mistakes, and I’m sure that next year will be even better. I also think they deserve recognition for the things they have put into place – I know people who very much appreciated the quiet rooms, and the communication preference and pronoun badges are wonderful. At one point, I left the convention for food and found myself checking people for the badges – wouldn’t it be amazing if these existed in everyday life?!

So, what did I do with my four days? I mostly spent them in the All of the Books and Young Adult tracks. I had plans to challenge myself with the panels I chose, but to be honest, the books were just too tempting. I did manage one History panel (and how awesome is it that there *was* a History track?!), on Historical Heroines, which I very much enjoyed, and I kind of wish I’d spent more time in that track. Only, y’know, not enough to actually do it. Instead, I listened to a variety of authors talk about building characters and worlds, using myths and legends, writing gender and sexuality in YA and why death is such a popular concept in genre. I watched both ‘big debates’ (sci-fi vs fantasy and TV vs books vs comics vs games), which were both hilarious, participated in a gin tasting, attended a number of publishing parties/book launches (the Jo Fletcher Books party wins the title for the best though), met a ridiculous number of authors and got an equally ridiculous number of books signed (I’m a fangirl. I cant help myself.). There are some authors whose books I’m now planning to buy, simply because they were so awesome on their panels and/or when I met them (Snorri Kristjansson wins this year’s prize for favourite author whose books I have not yet read, but there was some stiff competition). There are other authors, some of whose books I *have* read, who made me determined to read everything else they’ve ever written (Joe Abercrombie, Sebastien de Castell and Frances Hardinge, although to be fair, I was already pretty determined on that count with all three of them). I fangirled ridiculously at Frances Hardinge and Rebecca Levene and probably embarrassed myself horribly by chatting to Tom Pollock while drunk. I finally met Emma Newman, who was just adorable. I also got to meet people I only knew online, as well as catching up with friends I haven’t seen in ages. I basically just had the best time and I’m already looking forward to next year! Tickets for 2016 are already available at the Nine Worlds site and I highly recommend attending.

(And yes, further to my post last year, I stayed in the con hotel, and it was sooooo much better. It makes everything much easier, and I was very glad I didn’t have to carry Joe Abercrombie’s Shattered Sea trilogy with me for the entire day! Or the ridiculous number of free books I ended up with for that matter. (Thanks Gollancz and Hodderscape!) It was also lovely to be able to escape to peace and quiet whenever I wanted to, so that was definitely a good decision.)

I didn’t take any pictures while I was at the convention – there was some amazing cosplay around, and I’m sure other blogs will be posting their photos, but I was too busy running from panel to panel. However, I have taken these two since I came home:

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(That is my lovely, lovely pile of signed books – and yes, I lugged all but one of them all the way down to Heathrow and back up to Liverpool (The City’s Son, which I already owned on kindle, was one of my free books this year and I honestly couldn’t be happier that I now have a complete physical set) – and my badge and lanyard, which has now joined last year’s Nine Worlds and Loncon 3 badges.)

So that was my Nine Worlds. How was yours?


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