My first Octocon as Chair

Octocon 2023 is over!

We had some ups and downs, as all conventions go, but all in all it was wonderful! I survived my panels, which included getting to talk Irish folklore and YA (separately) with Ruth Long, and getting to talk comics and Barbie with Kat and Danielle, with Michael Carroll also on the comics panel and Entity on the Barbie session.

All of that makes sense, I swear.

My twin brother helped with my bilocation for the weekend by manning our trade hall table. He sold quite a few books for me, which ultimately ended up paying for his Christmas present and a concert ticket… wait a minute–!

There we are now, being two people.

I was rather dead by the end of Saturday, which included a table quiz at the same time as the rugby, but thankfully I was staying in the hotel. (I was very much in the mindset of “I worked hard for this convention, I’m treating myself.) So I rolled out of bed on Sunday morning and ate all of the breakfast food.

We were really well looked after by the hotel staff, who seemed to share in our passion for all things nerdy. They made all the difference to our experience at the Gibson.

After the panic of the Opening Ceremony (it was my first one!) and some small fires to extinguish (proverbial only), the Closing Ceremony was straightforward. I said all the thank yous my tired brain remembered to write down, I gave the pre-bid co-Chairs for Dublin 2029 a chance to talk to the community, and Sarah Rees Brennan gave an inspiring and beautiful speech about science fiction and fantasy. We then did our charity raffle, which was followed by her dumping The Big Hat full of raffle tickets over my head.

It was perfect.

I’m still recovering from what was effectively a full working week in the space of three days, but we’ve already started planning for next year. I’m going to be spending most of the rest of the month just taking care of myself.

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