Thursday, February 21, 2013

Full Steam Ahead

One thing about horror fiction that I’ve found fascinating is how nice most folks are. I belong to the Horror Writers Association, which is a professional association of people who write dark fiction. When I meet folks from this group I’m always amazed at how nice most people are. Frankly, I can’t say the same for some other writing organizations. That said, I suppose most folks look at joining up as what do I get out of it? That not always an easy answer. If you’re a mediocre writer before joining, you’re still going to be a mediocre writer. But, chances to interact with writers and other people such as artists and editors is generally a good thing. That’s why a lot of writers attend cons. That’s short for conventions. You can meet and talk to both other writers and with fans at these things. But, will attending a con make you a good writer? Hell no. You’ll still be the mediocre writer you were before attending. I honestly believe some writers think if they hang around with talented and successful writers it will somehow rub off on them. Trust me, it won’t.

To this I lead up the fact that I’m participating at Anomaly Con in about a month. I’m new to this con, which tends to be steampunk oriented. What I’ve noticed with the steampunk crowd is a much higher percentage of folks running around in costume. Where, at a typical science fiction con, they’re happy if you put a clean shirt on. With steam there’s all manner of folks running around in various stages of pseudo-Victorian attire. This has left me in a bit of a quandary. Do I need some new duds? I spent yesterday visiting thrift stores looking for just the right thing that I could snatch up on the cheap. No go. I found nothing. It’s kind of like the young lady who’s just been invited to the Royal ball and hasn’t a thing to wear. The advantage with steam is they say anything will pass if you just put goggles on it. Well, I haven’t found any goggles at the thrift store. Sure, I could order some duds. There are actually purveyors of such wear. But, these said purveyors want me to pay them money.

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