Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Three Words: SciFi, Gay, Outlantacon

Paul Bright, Kage Alan, Eugie Foster,
Kayelle Allen, Shae Connor
I attended Outlantacon over the weekend. This friendly, local event has become my favorite convention of the year. What is it? Outlantacon is an Atlanta-based event for the Queer Geek audience! It had all the usual convention fare -- discussion panels, gaming, costuming, special events, etc. The difference was a queer 'bent' to everything. Here you can enjoy all the convention trappings in an atmosphere where you're free to be yourself! There were some unique twists, such as game shows like you've never seen them. The Match Game (a staple since 2007), Project Cosplay (introduced in 2010) and Nea's Drag Race (added in 2011) were all outrageously fun. There were film screenings by Paul Bright (Goliath Uprising, Altitude Falling), and by Jevocas Green and Eric Green (Uncanny X-Men, Between Lines).

A full Writer's Workshop took place, and included the following topics:
Denny Upkins, Eugie Foster
Shae Connor
  • How NOT to Get Published
  • Creating Grabber First Paragraphs
  • Character Creation and Development
  • Storytelling and Plotting
  • Self-Promotion and Marketing
  • Social Media
  • The Blogging Author

Next year's writer's workshops promise to be even bigger, and will include publishers looking for GLBT literature and themes.

Kiernan Kelly, Kage Alan, Kayelle Allen
Hushicho Phoenix, TC Blue
One of the best panels was one of the last: "Help! I'm Married to an Author!" It included words of advice (and some amusing confessions) by George Martindale (Lee Martindale's hubby), Butch Zonka (Kiernan Kelly's hubby), and a last minute addition of my own hubby, Ed. These guys go above and beyond. Lee says George is the official "schlepper" of her writing business, and he concurred. "Books," he said with a stoic smile, "are heavy." Butch is Kiernan's Publicist, coffee-deliverer, and business manager, and Ed keeps me going by taking care of details and giving me the freedom I need to write. None of us would do what we do with as much zip and aplomb if we had to do it alone.

When you attend a convention, what's the most important thing you look for? Do you go to have fun? To network? To get away from the workaday world? Which con is your favorite?


Sally Bibrary said...

It's been a few years since I've attended a genre convention, but I've never had the chance to hit one with a 'queer' slant. Sounds like a ton of fun . . . I am soooo jealous. :)

Kayelle Allen said...

Sally, this one is so much fun that I can hardly wait for next year. ;)

Here's the con's facebook page.