My first con was the last Disclave; little did I know how that con would be remembered! Next I went to Philcon back when it was in Philly but at the suburban Adams Mark, not the downtown venue. My first Worldcon was Buccaneer, in Baltimore, in 1998. I started going to cons in an effort to network, but what I found was that they were a lot of fun. One thing I noticed was the two friends who introduced me to conventions almost never went to any panels. They knew a huge number of attendees and they could spend hours browsing the dealers' room without complaint, but they almost never bothered to check the program let alone go to a panel.
After I had been to a fair number of panels, I realized one reason is, there is a sameness to many of them. I still attend programming but I have learned to be selective with my time and to sit near the door if the subject— or the panelists— seem likely to devolve into boring rants about things I don't care about.
I thought about all this today because Cheryl Morgan posted an article in the SFWA Bulletin that was a response to some complaints about Worldcon voiced by author Mike Resnick in an earlier article (not online that I could find). I thought Cheryl made some good points. Resnick's main complaint was that events like Comic Con were much larger than Worldcon. Well, duh! The irony to me is that Resnick is annoyed at having a smaller audience at a Wordlcon than he would at Comic Con, when in fact, Worldcon is smaller because it focuses on books instead of movies and TV. As a book author, he should be grateful there is still a good-sized literary con for authors to be Guests of Honor at. He also thinks Worldcon should stay in one city, so it can establish a following.
Personally, I don't want to attend a monster-sized convention. I recently saw a post that referred to Comic Con as having "flesh glaciers." Does that sound inviting? Well, maybe to some folks, but not to me. And I like that it really is a Worldcon, even if that means there are plenty of years when I can't go because it's too far away
So, I decided to do a poll, to see what everyone else out there thinks. If you have an LJ account, please take my poll! And if you don't take it, well, I guess then you're just a "no-account!"
Have you ever been to a con?
What I like most about conventions is . . . (check all that apply)
What do you think of the idea that Worldcon should stay in one city every year?
Do you ever volunteer at cons (not counting programming)?
If you won a contest and could pick any con to attend for free, which one would it be?