Ad Astra Round-Up

Ad Astra caught me by surprise this year.

It’s not like I didn’t know it was coming. I’ve known I was going since the last Ad Astra, which I missed due to being in New Zealand. But in the haze of the final weeks of my final semester, and the insanity of the last few months, I didn’t connect the dots until I was scrambling to ready my case of books.

(Actually, Ad Astra is still going on today—I’m skipping out to deal with the schoolwork a bit more.)

It was a good con. Friday was exciting because my friend and colleague Leah Petersen was launching her latest book: Cascade Effect, the sequel to Fighting Gravity. I read and loved Fighting Gravity, so I snagged my copy of Cascade Effect, right after the incredible Ed Greenwood. And then there was a penthouse party, with good food, cool people, and a very excellent reading (yes, Leah, I could hear you!). My copy is currently on my bookshelf, next to its mate, awaiting the wonderful day when I conquer academia.

Saturday was also fun. I mostly sold books and wandered around, though I did attend a very helpful panel on agents moderated by Adrienne Kress. Naturally, I knew her name, but I’d never been able to match a face to it. Plus, you know, information and such.

Otherwise—I mostly just talked to people. There was a mingling of DMP authors Saturday night, which was fun, and also really interesting. Although I met Marie Bilodeau in November at World Fantasy Con, I’d never had the chance for an extended conversation with her—and I’m so glad I finally did. We talked for a long time about how myths and stories spread and evolve (“Stories control people. That’s why I became an author!”), and then the chat turned to our own upcoming projects. And then she said something that caught me by surprise:

“You sound so energized, with this new book. That’s so good to see!”

People have called me many things in the last few months. Energized is not one of them. Nor had I really felt much energy all weekend. But it’s true: this project has nothing whatsoever to do with the Hapax universe. Exploring this new world has been such a rush, and it will be such a departure for me, and I’m still in the dewy-eyed honeymoon stage of, “This story is gonna be so awesome and I’m totally forgetting how much work it will actually be to make it come out the way I want.”

But I digress. My point, I think, is that Marie’s comment just confirms that I’m probably on the right path, in terms of writing something about which I’m passionate. Incidentally, Marie’s upcoming projects sound awesome, but I shall leave the discussion of them to her. 🙂

I’d been able to talk earlier with Robert J. Sawyer and a few other authors I hadn’t met before, but the other extended conversation of that night was with Ed Greenwood. Ed is almost frighteningly smart; the man is a fount of knowledge. But we talked about the forgotten bits of Toronto: the secret passages in the old buildings, the tunnel network under Queen’s Park and various bits of downtown (not the PATH: way older and much cooler), the phantom subway stations, the lost rivers…

All of that fascinates me. It’s the notion of the in-between space, the space that isn’t really part of anything, but links to everything, the lost space, the ghost space, the space once thought forgotten….

I’m not sure when or how all that will play into a book, but I know that it will. It’s definitely in my mental file of “Things That Keep Me Awake At Night.”

So yes. A good con.

Posted on April 7, 2013, in Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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