I've spent the last two days at Wastelands II convention and what an enjoyable weekend it was. Interesting panels and a chance to catch up with local writers, editors and publishers with a common interests. The theme was Steampunk - not an area I've had much to do with until recently but it's growing on me. The idea of a fantastical world where steam powers everything and glamorous vaguely Victorian dress reigns supreme is appealing. If you watched the Sally Lockhart series on television recently you would have seen a similar version - high heeled buttoned boots and corseted ankle length dresses with low cut bodices for the women and rakish stovepipe hats and waistcoats lifting the original less than exciting Victorian style men's clothing to something eye-catching. Con-goers were encouraged to dress to the theme and there were a number of stunning costumes much to the bewilderment of other guests at the hotel.
It's hard to pick a best panel. They were all good value but the stand outs for me were guest of honour Nick Stathopoulos's presentations. Such a talented artist and an entertaining speaker who had us enthralled whether he was explaining just why and how the Titanic went down or how he went about creating artwork ranging from portraits for a socialite or the Archibald Prize to book cover art.
Another highlight was the Coffee Klatch with Alisa Krasnostein. It's not often you get the chance to sit down and chat informally with an editor - and the coffee and cakes were yummy too.
And now - after all that fun - it's back to work. What a pity.