Last weekend was Boskone 51; Boskone is the longest-running convention in New England devoted to science fiction, fantasy, and horror. I've attended a bunch so far, but this was my busiest weekend yet. Seven panels, a kaffeeklatsch, an autographing, and a reading. That's a lot to pack into one weekend, and the variety of panel topics (and the discussions among the panelists and the audience) make for a stimulating con.
While it is organized by the New England Science Fiction Association, there's a wide range of topics on genre fiction. For example, I was on panels about "Doctor Who," Joss Whedon, New England as a setting for weird fiction, and examining what our culture says about comic book characters with disabilities, but I was also on panels about writing mysteries, Sherlock Holmes, and short story writing. It's one of the coolest things going, crossing genres and taking subjects apart with writers (and readers) from all across the board. (Below, the short story panel, with Fellow Femmes Fatales Charlaine Harris and Toni Kelner (m); Paul Tremblay and I are in back.)
Another great thing about this con is the spirit of creativity. There's an art show, and even the treats at the receptions are gorgeous and geeky (as well as being very tasty). For example, here's some of the pastry from the reception: below, you may recognize the One Ring (complete with high Elvish inscription) on this cupcake. Most of us steered away from that one... There were also ravens with skulls, Elvish leaf brooches, and more (from the Jostess Bakery in Medford, MA).
There were a few panels I would have enjoyed attending as an audience member. The session on Doctor Who and gender sounded wonderful and I would have liked to see the panelists reenacting the scenes from cover art in SF/F and horror books. I also missed Toni Kelner's (Leigh Perry's) interview with Special Guest Ginjer Buchanan, but since I had the privilege of being on panels with both of them, and Charlaine, I count myself well ahead of the game!
As seems to be traditional with Boskone, there was a blizzard. Here's a view from the panel-room floor. In keeping with the SF theme, I decided to call it “Hothkone.” Here's looking forward to next year, and hoping we cheat the winter again!