To my surprise, Dragon Con had a lot of accomplished authors. And they had some pretty great panels.
I will admit, the first panel I attended wasn’t at all what I was expecting. Who would’ve thought a panel titled “The Pen & The Sword: Arming the Written Word” would turn out to be four military authors talking about their guns and experience on the battlefield for an hour? Not me.
Feeling a little let down and much more cautious about taking panels at face value, I decided to check out another. “Tooting Your sown Horn: Marketing Yourself” turned out to be exactly what it sounds like. Also just as boring as it sounds. But there was still some pretty good information there. It just so happened that it wasn’t any more than I had previously been taught at university.
But after that one, I had a little more faith that I could learn something productive while I was enjoying myself. So I went by “Keeping a Series Moving.” This one was kind of an eye opener. One author had written a series over ten novels long and was bored of it. Another only had roughly 30 minutes to an hour of writing time a day and still had several series. Not only that, but they took some time to define what a series really is. Something like Lord of the Rings can only be called a series because Tolkien decided to make it 3 books. It technically could’ve been one big book, making it a meta arc series. Versus never-ending stories like the Marvel and DC comics. There are several thousand stories that mesh together using recurring characters, making it continuous.
It was really serendipitous. In the grand scheme of things, what does it matter that I can label and differentiate between the two? Not much. But the way they spoke about writing a series and their own experiences in doing so just really spoke to me. Two of the panelists actually got into a brief argument on the right way to write one, which as you could imagine culminated in them agreeing that there are hundreds of ways to write successfully. And it was especially nice to know that I’m not the only one that has imaginary friends talking to him!
Honestly, I don’t think my story can fit into one novel. And I kinda hope it doesn’t. I wanna stick around with characters for awhile because I’m just so invested and intrigued by them.
All in all, Dragon Con was an amazing experience. It was such a huge convention that I never would’ve believed it if I hadn’t been there myself. I met one of my favorite actresses, Gina Torres. I listened to her and many more of my favorites revel on their careers and answer questions. I almost spent way too much money on a keyblade (though I really don’t think I would’ve ever regretted it). And I walked so much that I couldn’t feel my legs.
It was great being surrounded by so many like-minded individuals. I’m really glad I decided to go this year and I’m already thinking about going next year. It was an experience I’ll never forget.