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A Few Quick Thoughts

I am off to Baltimore tomorrow for Balticon 50, which promises to be a real blast. In honor of half a century of great cons, the fans of Baltimore are bringing in lots and lots of their past GOHs, along with me, their current GOH, so we should have an amazing crowd on hand. Connie Willis, Joe Haldeman, John Varley... oh, the list goes on and on. Go to the Balticon website and see for your own self. And then come to the con. Panels, readings, parties... and there will be CRABS.



On other fronts... we had an amazing time at the Jean Cocteau last night, when a sellout crowd assembled to hear Joe Hill. Joe gave a dynamite reading from his new novel THE FIREMAN, led the audience in a kazoo concert, told us about all his forthcoming television and film projects, and signed stacks and stacks of books. Most of which were promptly carried off by his eager fans. But we did lay in extra supplies, so if you're looking for autographed copies of THE FIREMAN, or HEART-SHAPED BOX, or LOCKE & KEY, or any of Joe's stuff, it's available -- while the supply lasts -- from the Jean Cocteau Bookshop at http://www.jeancocteaubooks.com/ -- along with signed books from Neil Gaiman, Stephen Graham Jones, Diana Gabaldon, Joe Lansdale, and many many more.

Heated discussions continue about this year's Hugo ballot, and the various proposals being brought forth to reform the voting procedures to defend the integrity of the award against future attacks by Rabid Puppies and other varieties of fuggheads. Some of the proposals are worth considering. I have severe doubts about others. But I don't have time to get into all of that now, so it will have to wait until I return.

Meanwhile, I am doing my Hugo reading, and I urge all of you who are members of Big MAC II to do the same. Read, consider, vote.

And if you're not yet a member of Big MAC II... well, if there's any chance at all that you can get to KC this August, you ought to join and attend. There's nothing like a worldcon. And the original Big MAC in 1976 was, in my not-so-humble-opinion, the best worldcon that I've ever had the pleasure of attending, so I have high hopes for this year's. The KC fans know how to party. And while they cannot match Baltimore for crabs, they do have BARBEQUE!

(I will keep comments open on this one only through tomorrow morning. I expect to be away from my computer while traveling, and don't want hundreds of screened comments awaiting my return).

Comments

( 55 comments )
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werthead
May. 24th, 2016 07:02 pm (UTC)
Argh, I was nearly going to come but sadly not. Some of my friends from the ASoIaF Facebook Group will be there. They have promised to be on their best behaviour. Well, almost :)
yagathai
May. 24th, 2016 07:03 pm (UTC)
See you in Baltimore, George!
grrm
May. 24th, 2016 08:25 pm (UTC)
Look forward to it. Will there be a Valley Forge party?
(no subject) - yagathai - May. 24th, 2016 10:04 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - epigen - May. 24th, 2016 11:53 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - yagathai - May. 25th, 2016 02:57 am (UTC) - Expand
Baltimore - cynhounds - May. 24th, 2016 11:32 pm (UTC) - Expand
iceandfirecon
May. 24th, 2016 07:07 pm (UTC)
Balticon love from Ice & Fire Con
A few folks from Ice & Fire Con will be at Balticon and the r/asoiaf meet up! Excited to hear about their experiences there. Also, we have picked the dates for next year's Ice & Fire Con: April 28-30, 2017
tfwalton
May. 24th, 2016 07:08 pm (UTC)
Are you giving a speech? If so, do you know if it will be made available online?
grrm
May. 24th, 2016 08:24 pm (UTC)
An interview.
(no subject) - tfwalton - May. 24th, 2016 08:35 pm (UTC) - Expand
BryndenBFish
May. 24th, 2016 07:09 pm (UTC)
Have fun!
Have fun! We have a whole group of ASOIAF reddit fans planning to attend. We're all looking forward to seeing you. If you stay off the main drag, look at a place like Nick's Fish House for some of the best crabs in the city.

I hope this is on-topic, but John Picacio mentioned on twiter that you were reading a brand new chapter from WINDS that you haven't read or released previously. Without spoiling anything, I wonder whether you might say whether this was true or not?

Regardless, you'll have a blast. Weather looks to be beautiful out here while you're here!
grrm
May. 24th, 2016 08:24 pm (UTC)
Re: Have fun!
Well, I am reading something... haven't decided what yet.
Re: Have fun! - j_picacio - May. 25th, 2016 01:13 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Have fun! - Arthur Merinovich - May. 25th, 2016 07:00 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Have fun! - hippoiathanatoi - May. 25th, 2016 08:48 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Have fun! - BryndenBFish - May. 25th, 2016 10:59 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Have fun! - Zach Peterson - May. 25th, 2016 01:59 pm (UTC) - Expand
cashcraig
May. 24th, 2016 07:14 pm (UTC)
There's going to be a podcasting panel there held by some great ASOIAF podcasters (Radio Westeros, History of Westeros). You should show up and ask them some questions - may I recommend "who is your favorite character?" and "why are your podcasts so violent?"

Edited at 2016-05-24 07:16 pm (UTC)
kgpaints
May. 24th, 2016 07:16 pm (UTC)
Safe travels! Enjoy all the seafood in Baltimore.
Erin Underwood
May. 24th, 2016 07:19 pm (UTC)
Since you mentioned MAC II (WorldCon) memberships and Balticon ... MAC II asked staff to help promote this special offer. So, I'm linking it here for convenience. Perfect timing, George! I hope it is okay with you to post this here. :-)

http://midamericon2.org/memorial-day/

Memorial Day Membership Offer!

This weekend only, we are offering a special Weekend (Fri-Sun) Pass* for $150, or for just $50 more you can purchase a Full Attending Membership (Wed-Sun) which gives you two more days of programming and events, ability to attend the Retro Hugo Swing Dance plus voting rights for the Hugo Awards and the option to vote for the location of 2018 Worldcon!

This offer will be available online (and in person at ConQuest and Balticon) Friday through Monday.

*Weekend passes do not include Hugo Award or Site Selection Voting rights.
Jack Posobiec
May. 24th, 2016 07:23 pm (UTC)
Schedule
Sir, when is your panel/session this weekend? Balticon has not published schedule and my wife and I are trying to arrange childcare. Thanks for all you do!
grrm
May. 24th, 2016 08:23 pm (UTC)
Re: Schedule
Friday I will be at opening ceremonies 7pm to 9 pm.

Saturday we have a 10:30 am signing, and an interview at 1:30pm, and a 3:30 panel with John Picacio.

Sunday another signing at 10:30 am, the liar's panel at 1:00pm, and a reading at 3:15.

Monday I have a kaffeeklatch at 11:30 (advance signup required).
RE: Re: Schedule - lyanna - May. 25th, 2016 12:12 am (UTC) - Expand
_standback_
May. 24th, 2016 07:26 pm (UTC)
Meanwhile, I am doing my Hugo reading, and I urge all of you who are members of Big MAC II to do the same. Read, consider, vote.
I'm in way too deep on the voting-mechanics discussions, but this is really so important, and can't be repeated often enough. In March I nominated for the first time, and I love how immensely it changed my reading patterns - to brand new stuff, to constant discovery, to always having other people to discuss books with and trade recommendations with.

If anybody's interested in beefing up their short story reading, and having somebody to chat with about 'em, I've set up a little short story club on Facebook; all for stories from the myriad free and excellent ezines. We're always happy for new participants :)
slowmotionriot
May. 24th, 2016 07:30 pm (UTC)
Faith of the Seven
Hi George-

Quick question for you... What does one call a follower of the Faith of the Seven? (i.e. Methodist Church = Methodist, Islam = Muslim)

Have fun at Balticon!
grrm
May. 24th, 2016 08:19 pm (UTC)
Re: Faith of the Seven
Never thought about it.
Re: Faith of the Seven - thebryanway - May. 24th, 2016 08:30 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Faith of the Seven - werthead - May. 24th, 2016 08:42 pm (UTC) - Expand
RE: Re: Faith of the Seven - Keith Russell Dulak - May. 25th, 2016 02:51 am (UTC) - Expand
rodrigozanotta
May. 24th, 2016 07:31 pm (UTC)
Safe travel!
Have a safe trip mr George, if i see you in Baltimore, i'll hold the door for you :)

ps: currently amazed by a clash of kings, 30% read.
stargazer60
May. 24th, 2016 07:33 pm (UTC)
Looking forward to the con! See you there!
savatage
May. 24th, 2016 08:54 pm (UTC)
Someday if / when you announce you're coming to Milwaukee I'll be the first in line. No better place to enjoy an ice cold beer, and it seems you might need one!
Jasmine Townsel
May. 24th, 2016 09:22 pm (UTC)
Balticon
See you there!!!
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