[We continue with Day 2 of Dave’s travel journal. -Jonathan]
Rosy-fingered Dawn greeted us on our second day at Worldcon as we arose earlier than intended but eager to get the day started. As tacky as this hotel is, it’s really quite comfortable and we all managed a good night’s sleep – even Rico in the bathroom. Chris and I headed out to the convention center lugging the 5 boxes of bookmarks with us to get things set up while Rico ran some errands.
With no registration line to worry about this time we got things in order straight away and settled in to pimp WWEnd. We could tell that more people had set up shop than on the first day and it looked like we’d have to make the rounds again to see what was new. The crowd was much bigger as well and we had a good deal of traffic past our table. While we got going Rico went out and bought a huge monitor for the table that he slaved to one of the laptops. What a difference that made. People were drawn to it like moths to a flame and it was much easier to demo the site there than on the much smaller laptop screens. You can see that thing from way down the aisle too. I think a lot of people did not want to get too near to see what we were about because they thought we’d try to sell them something. With the big screen they could see the awards listings and other features we were showing off from afar and they felt more comfortable coming up to the table.
Once Rico and Liz got to the table Chris and I took the opportunity to break out and see some of the programming. We managed to catch only two of the many shows we wanted to see but we didn’t want to leave the other guys stranded at the table. Let me just say that the people who plan these sessions are evil heartless bastards. They scheduled all the bloody shows we wanted to see at the same time so we had to make some agonized decisions on what we’d have to miss. Based on overheard conversations around the convention we were not the only ones to feel the pain.
Both of us wanted to go to an author reading and we had to choose between George R. R. Martin and Greg Bear. See what I mean about painful decisions? We settled on Martin but we arrived a few minutes late so I can’t tell you what specifically he was reading but it was pretty cool. The only problem was the speaker volume was low and we had to strain a bit to hear him. Everyone in the room was dead silent and eagerly leaning forward to catch every word like acolytes heading their master.
After the reading we went to see Valejo Does Tarot. If you’re reading this blog you know who Boris Valejo is. His art is unmistakable and is one of the reasons I got into SF/F in the first place — Chris just likes hot Sci-Fi babes so we were both excited to see him. It turns out that his whole family, wife and two sons, are all artists in their own right and they have been working on a tarot deck for the last few years. I’m not into Tarot at all but I’ve always loved the imagery on the cards and their take, as evidenced in the slideshow presentation, is especially awesome. The talk was really interesting too as they described their process and methods. Much of the crowd was focused on the mysticism in the cards but plenty there just wanted to see some great art.
It was a pretty great day overall and today is shaping up to be another one with the crowds expected to grow even larger. More to come!