So. Reno. Wow. I was SO not prepared for the intensity of having a casion on the ground floor of the hotel. Not my cup of tea, I’m afraid. Flashing lights, buzzers, mirrored ceilings, hideous carpets (I’m told that is deliberate. So you lift your eyes and look at the machines.) and rows of hunched backs of people crouched over their machines. It felt like a sensory assault every time I walked through it, to where I felt almost physically ill.
So. That was educational!
The shuttles to the convention center were frequent, dependable, and stuffed with writers! And the convention center itself was an excellent space for the convention, with large rooms that were clearly marked. The dealers’ room and the art show were side by side in an immense room that also had plenty of space for a teen area, a signing area, a fanzine area, a coffee bar . . . all in one space and very well done.
My favorite room was down at the end of the hall. The children’s center was well staffed and well stocked with legos, beads, art and craft supplies, and verylively children. I did a talk there about why kids should start writing right now. Met a very young man who was already writing and illustrating comics, and did two quick critiques on manuscripts that the young authors just happened to have with them. The kids were well spoken, the writing was scarily good, and I think it was my best event at the con! Many thanks to James for being there, as well as the other volunteers who were carrying on all sorts of tasks.
The best part of any Worldcon is running into random friends and this one was no exception. I had a lovely conversation with Kim Stanley Robinson, one that has me re-thinking my writing space. Also connected with Steve and Barry, long time friends from my newsgroup. As always, there were too many ‘hi-goodbye’ meetings on escalators and in hallways, but that is to be expected.
We drove down and then back again to Tacoma, passing through some of the most beautiful mountains and forest I’ve seen. When we would get out to stretch our legs, the smell of the dry upland forest took me right back to my California childhood. Wonderful. I arrived home ready to sit back down at my desk and get some work done.
Lucky for me that did. I spoke a bit soon thinking that book 4 was out the door. Back it came, to have one last plot thread stitched up a bit more tightly. So that is my task for this week.
I will also mention here that the publishing schedule has changed. Book three, City of Dragons, is scheduled for February 2012. And Book four, Blood of Dragons, has been pushed back to 2013. So there will be a bit of a wait between the books after all.
In other news, I’ve got a neat little tale to share. When I was at Imaginales, my friend Sylvain asked me to autograph a book to “voyageur inconnu”. He had been traveling on the train and had noticed a fellow rider reading one of my books. He did not know the man at all, but he suspected he would see him again.
Here is his account of what became of that book:
From the end of May I had the book in my bag almost every day in case of encounter with this unknown traveller (that I saw only once). I never saw him again.
Weeks after weeks I imagined then to go to a library and to offer the book to an interrested reader. But I was almost sure to meet the “voyageur inconnu” just the day after if I’d do it. 🙂
So, I tried to take different trains at different hours with no success.
Finally, last week, I was walking on the platform to take my train and I recognized him. I stopped in front of him and said :
– Hello, do you sometimes read books written by Robin Hobb ?
He looked very surprised and replied :
– Yes !?!
I explained him all the story when I saw him reading in the train and that I met you at the Imaginales and that you autographed a book for him.
He smiled widely and asked me if it was true. 🙂
He was really very happy of this gift.
Back to me! I am utterly charmed by Syvain’s impulse and his account of hte happy ending.
And in yet more other, other news, there is a new interview up at Wonderlance. The portrait there was taken by my friend Antoine Mottier when I was at Etonnants Voyageurs.
So, that’s all for now. And back to work for me, on a story about a very dangerous woman . . .