Over Easter weekend the SeaTac Doubletree enjoyed the presence of the 35th annual Norwescon, the largest science fiction and fantasy convention in the area. Due to a number of factors, I was only able to attend one day. Due to continued recovery from my ACUS con crud, I almost didn’t brave the drive down south and the need to be social for several hours. But I made the trek anyway and was glad that I had. I got to see some friends I don’t often see, plus sit in on some excellent panels. So here are some highlights.
Once again the wife and I travelled out to beautiful and scenic Livonia, Michigan, for the 23rd annual AmberCon. For those not familiar, this is a small four-day convention dedicated primarily to playing Amber Diceless and (mostly) similar games. No dealer room, no panels. Just four days of roleplaying in scheduled slots of games. It’s held at Embassy Suites Livonia. There have been other Ambercons spawned over the years, and I am most fond of AmberCon Northwest, but this is the convention originally started by Amber Diceless creator Erick Wujcik.
It’s been a while since I’ve done a news post instead of an after action report. The last few months have been a little nuts and so I’ve let some stuff pass without notice. So, in no particular order:
- “Snowflake’s Chance in Hell,” the tale of a sentient panda versus evil tstchotchkes appeared in Cobalt City Dark Carnival.
- “A Necessity of the Present,” my tale of high fantasy noir was republished in Future Imperfict: Best of Wily Writers, Volume 2.
- “Kiss of Death,” the incredible story of two necromancers in love came out in Arcane.
- I’ve handed off the first draft of my book, Kensei, to the folks at Timid Pirate Publishing. This is a young adult piece set in the superhero shared universe created by Nathan Crowder. It’s part of the series of YA books that they are producing called “Cobalt City Rookies.”
- I’ve opened up to submissions for my experimental e-zine, Mad Scientist Journal. Here’s to hoping I get enough people to get it off the ground.
- Don’t drive vehicles when you don’t have the driving skill.
- Don’t go back in time and kill the main antagonist when they were a baby. Breaks the universe.
- Don’t kill everything in sight. It’s not GTA.
And, in reference to a completely different game:
- Don’t let Jeremy make up your backstory for you.
I feel like I’ve traumatized the last batch of kids. And I’m kind of proud of that.
This weekend represented the first convention I attended in which I got to appear as a panelist. RustyCon is one of the smaller conventions in the Seattle area that caters to the general fan community. The impression I got is that they consider themselves a bit more of a family friendly convention compared to Norwescon. According to their site they have membership of about 500-600. It didn’t seem that crowded to me, but then there were parts of the convention we just never went to.
For those of you who I’ve only recently met, let me first explain a little about AmberCon Northwest. ACNW is a yearly game convention based mostly around Erick Wujcik’s Amber Diceless Roleplaying Game. Which in turn is based on Roger Zelazny’s Chronicles of Amber series. Over the years, the strict adherence to only playing Amber Diceless has slackened. There continue to be Amber games, but there are also lots of other off beat games that now get run there. There are several of these cons each year. I’ve only been to two of them, and this is my favorite of them.
The convention is run at the McMenamin’s Edgefield, a beautiful resort just east of Portland, OR. Not only does the Edgefield have an on-site brewery, distillery and winery, but it also has a spa and salt-water soaking pool. The convention has no dealer room and almost never has panels. Instead from Thursday through Sunday the weekend is all about gaming.
The community of 120 some odd people is very open and welcoming. New people often speak of how friendly and helpful people are, and many of the people I’ve gotten to know over the last twelve years feel like family.
I have a bunch of stuff I’m supposed to be doing. Get as much of my novella for Timid Pirate done that I can before NaNoWriMo. Finish prep work for the novel I want to work on during November. Prep for the games I’m running at AmberCon Northwest.
I’m considering consolidating this blog into my writing blog, and moving both to my bolthy.com site. Thoughts?
I’ve been poking around Scion books for the last few weeks. This started because I came up with the final game I’d like to run at AmberCon Northwest. Just as I ran a diceless Exalted: Dragon-Blooded game at AmberCon in Michigan, I want to try and run a diceless version of a game where I love the setting but find the rules frustrating. I’ve got a rough frame work for what I’m thinking, so I thought I’d toss it out there for people to respond to.
I’ve really loved running the Shadowrun campaign I’ve been doing. I’ve had a stellar group of roleplayers who have really made the game come alive. I’ve also learned a whole lot.