Friday, August 3rd
Got up at stupid o'clock to attend the Draco panel hosted by titti, sabershadowkat and lauriegilbert. I... think it was too early for a Draco panel, to be honest. Too early after the new canon, not too early in the morning. :-P I mean, we spent a good half an hour discussing the HBP facestomp as opposed to, oh, I don't know, DRACO INSISTING ON SAVING HIS FRIEND FROM A FIRE. >.> But it was a fun discussion nonetheless, and a good way to kick off the day.
At noon, cornmouse and I were supposed to go and get tattoos, but we decided to skip it because the parlour kept trying to get us to get ENORMOUSLY LARGE tattoos, insisting that our designs would lose too much detail if they were smaller. Which is bullshit; my design was done by a friend (a pro tattoo artist) who assured me that in the hands of a good tattoist, it would fit just fine on my shoulder. The parlour wanted to do it on my back and size it 5" x 8". Yeah. NO. So now I have this really awesometastic custom design but IDK when I'm going to get it in ink! *sadface* However, we celebrated our resistance to money-grabbing tattooists by getting our hair done instead, so it wasn't a total loss. Before the hair thing, evilsource and I found ROAST CHICKEN AND FRIES AND GRAVY chips. omg. XD
At four, it was the Queering of Harry Potter panel with emmagrant01, fiona_fawkes, mijan, and daddybear716. It was a very engaging discussion; I think it's neat that fandom is able to accommodate people of all orientations comfortably; it's really like a tolerant-of-queer-folk pocket of society -- I mean, there's always the slasher who thinks that Real Life Gay People are evil and godless, but in my personal fandom experience, they're generally shunned by the rest of slash fandom. Yes, I know, that's a very flippant thing to say. Bite me. It was also here that I thought that perhaps slashers tend to be more tolerant of queer culture not just because we queer our characters, but also because, well, if you tell Emerson Spartz that you're a slasher, he'll make a polite O RLY noise and then crash your slash panel with his buddies. Most of fandom -- and I don't mean LJ fandom, I mean the wide wide world of HP fen some of whom maybe will read the Leaky once a month to see what's new -- are not slashers, and I daresay many think that slashers are weird and scary. Sound familiar? :P
At six we went to the Harry/Draco dinner at Spring Rolls. I'm not even going to try and tell you who all was there, because we basically took over a huge, long-ass table in the basement of the restaurant (which, by the way, is quite reasonably priced and the food is excellent both in presentation and execution; that was a very, very nice surprise from a chain - Fi, once again, you rock). I sat with cornmouse, evilsource, geoviki and kriken nearest; there was much rejoicing over the little Pygmy Puffs we got in our goodie bags. I even won a door prize (!!), which was a fake wand (which I promptly put into my robe's special wand pocket as soon as I got to the hotel *\o/*) and a paperback copy of Quidditch Through the Ages (which I promptly fobbed off to evilsource since I have it in hardcover *\o/*).
Afterwards, evilsource, cornmouse and I hung out in goldie's room o' love and anime. I actually watched Prince of Tennis! It was the episode where they all played volleyball instead of tennis, and it was pretty amusing. They really are all gay! But the most memorable thing was the coach and her jiggly boobs of doom. Also, longleggedgit and I regaled the group with our appendectomy horror stories (I'm not telling), and then everyone slowly migrated to the hot tub.
Which totally sucked, because it was indoors and everything smelled like chlorine. I didn't say long -- I was actually barely walking at this point because of the damn blisters, but cornmouse, evilsource, and I did go and find the drabblers for about five seconds, after which we headed outside to discuss my upcoming roundtable (I had done a lot of THINKING about the roundtable but very little actual preparation). Our roundtable brainstorm session ended up just in talking about fics we liked and didn't like, and general fandom drama llama ding dong.
We also bartended in the dark! Prophecy organisers handed out these nifty little water bottles with the registration package, and we put them to good use by filling them with Smirnoff Ice. Alcohol consumption in public is illegal here unless you're on liquor-licensed territory, but that never stops
Saturday, August 4th
The three of us (we left lunacy a note this time! >.>) had a leisurely breakfast with lauriegilbert, kaalee, and orionnoire -- I don't remember what we'd talked about, I just know that at some point shit got depressing (boo, LJ), and conversation turned to buttsex. Which, really, is anyone surprised? After breakfast, we wandered around for a while and then it was time for my roundtable on fic cricitism.
Now, the roundtable didn't really go as I'd intended -- the idea was for reader vs reader discussion as opposed to reader vs author -- but it was okay; I was content to let people discuss the subject on the reviewer vs author level, because an e-mail discussion I've been having with a friend over the past few weeks made me realise that the fundamental divide isn't even between writers vs reader.
It's between people who regard fic as an author's property and people who regard fic as something that belongs to the fandom -- not "community property" by any means, but certainly an addition to fandom, if only by way of increasing the fanon. I am certainly in the "fic adds to fandom" mindset -- from Blood-Flavoured Lollipops to model!Draco, I think that fan fiction adds layers to fandom, creates avenues for discussion that weren't there before (would Draco really ever be a rentboy? Does this fic convince you? No? How about that one?), and even contributes to a sense of community by creating (and cementing) tropes that become in-jokes, code-words amongst fans of a particular pairing or character.
I look at a fic and I think "how does this influence my ideas about the source material, and has it got any porn in it?" Others just wonder about the source material/ideas; yet others wonder just about the porn. But overall, I believe fanfic is a "meta" part of fandom and as such members of fandom who aren't writers ought to have a right to talk about it, whether what they have to say is nice or not. Because it's the readers who get to decide what becomes a part of fanon and what doesn't. No, really, it's not about being a brilliant author and writing something that everyone instantly loves. It's about people loving something enough to tell their friends, and have those friends tell their friends. Of course, no story, trope, or characterisation choice will be universally loved by fandom, but the ones that endure are the ones people discuss. And ceaseless squeeing =/= discussion.
I do hope that there will come a point where fic can be discussed without needing the author's approval. I was very pleased to see that pretty much every writer in the group agreed that it's flattering to see your fic discussed somewhere as if it's Real Literature, though the room featured people like geoviki and marksykins who are Real Literature as far as I'm concerned. What can I say? I'm a fangirl.
Talking to an author about her story is not the same thing as talking to several other readers who read the same story and reacted to it in different ways. It just isn't. It's a testament to the author's skill if something she wrote is making people think and take the time to write down their thoughts. I'm not talking about MST done out of boredom or spite; I'm talking honest, gut-level discussion of fic, whether the reader thought it was "good" or not, and what others think of their opinion.
I am reasonably certain that at least a few of the non-writers there came away with the idea that no, really, it's okay to think bad things about stories they dislike, and really, it's okay to say them out loud, too. And I think that's fantastic.
After the roundtable, I had to bolt because my parents were bringing Bella back down so I could park her overnight. The hotel's valet parking was full so I parked across the street, beside a car with Ohio plates that said SLYTHRN. *\o/* Next to it was a sedan with "'Sup Figgy?" on the bumper. :D Anyway, my parents were late and we didn't get back to the hotel until like 4:30 and I missed the Shipping Harry panel. D:
That night was also the night of the Ball, which I had a ticket for but had no inclination to go. I ended up going with swtjemz for like 5 minutes, just to take a picture of longleggedgit in her Harry Potter outfit! But we spent most of the afternoon and evening camped out on the ugly orange carpet of the wireless area, reading flists, catching up on e-mail and preparing for the inevitable con drop. Then people showed up with alcohol and there was much semi-drunken drabbling. The prompts were Kinder Surprise toys that tonights handed out to everyone. Mine was a toucan. resulted.
Smokebreaks were spent in the company of midnitemaraud_r, snapetoy, djin7, cjmarlowe and her non-fandom friend. Also there was porn money, cock lollipops, and Draco's application to Tim Horton's (also linked above).The party didn't break up until well into the night; by the time we all got upstairs we were all extremely knackered.
Sunday, August 5th
The morning was just basically a rush to check out and stow luggage in Bella's trunk so we wouldn't have to lug our stuff around with us. We had breakfast at Timmy's again and there was much talk about the LJ kerfuffle and the future of fandom. At some point I remember saying bye to marksykins, cmere, and longleggedgit; I don't quite recall how we ended up downstairs but I remember that me and longleggedgit were all like LOL LET'S HUG WHILE WE ARE GOING UP THE ESCALATOR AND ANNOY THE HELL OUT OF EVERYONE TRYING TO WALK UP!! We were saying a LONG GOODBYE, YOU INSENSITIVE BERKS. >.> XD
cornmouse had to be at the airport by 2, so around 1 we gravitated to the wireless area, where we hung out for a bit with emmagrant01, kriken, kaalee, verdenia, and a few other folks. I didn't really get to say bye to many people, but in a way? That's okay. I hate goodbyes. ;_; At around 1:30 we met up with coffeejunkii and askani, and then the six of us were off to the airport. And yes, that meant that poor CJ had to lie across everyone's laps at the back, because in addition to being directionally challenged, I also can't count, and overloaded the car. *facepalm* She says it was comfy though, so that's my only consolation.
Dropped coffeejunkii and cornmouse at the airport; this incident basically consisted of me continually shrieking "OMG I LOVE YOU :( :( :(" and hugging Aut (I MISS YOU OMG D:). Then lauriegilbert, askani, and I headed to Lake Huron to drop off evilsource. The drive up was uneventful; there wasn't much roadkill, and most of the cows appeared to have already been tipped prior to our arrival. evilsource's mum showed us TINY KITTENS OMG *_* and then we drove back to Toronto. That's pretty much it, unless you count a stopover at a hick-town McDick's where we terrified the fuck out of the locals with our colourful slash buttons and fake Dark Marks. Then lauriegilbert and I dropped askani off at the hotel, picked up kaalee and headed home.
It didn't really feel like it was over until the following weekend -- on Friday, lauriegilbert, snapetoy, sealcat, nimori, _hibiscus and I hung out at a local East Side Mario's, and there was a very cute (and very gay) waiter and much hilarity. I haven't had a chance to pull those photos off my camera yet (*FAILS*), but speaking of photos--
I am only posting photos of random con locations (like the Art Gallery, etc), of groups (5+) with no identification information, and of myself. I know this is going to sound lame, but late last year a friend alerted me that my flickr account was being linked to on a hate meme, with unflattering comments being made about several of my friends. I felt awful about it, so it's all gone or locked down now. I do have all my "people" photos (60 or so of them) from Prophecy saved in a zip file and I'll be happy to send them to anyone who attended the con (just comment with an e-mail address that can take a 68Mb attachment). I would also be grateful if those of you who attended sent me your pics, if you haven't posted them yet.
You can see my public photos from Prophecy here.
...and that's all she wrote. I miss everyone lots and can't wait until next summer. ♥ I'll be at both Portus and Terminus, so if I don't see you in Dallas, I'll see you in Chicago. :>