Hypericon - Preshow Show

How does one write up a blast like Hypericon? It's like a crazy, inebriated and decidedly geeky family reunion, except you like these people.


The boy and I got a spectacularly late start - thanks, all you sources that waited until 4:30 p.m. to call me back. I spit my last breath at thee. With a little extra spit-up for UPS, which was delivering a box of SETTING SUNS and thought 5 p.m. was a good delivery time. I almost left without it, except SS is perennially my best seller.

I was on four hours' bad sleep, as I always have - ahem - performance anxiety before cons. I'm shy. And to be honest, I've had more than a little insecurity about my career of late, given the massive writer's block, the book that hates hates hates me and last year's publication setbacks. Whinge whinge complain bitch.

This one was a big mess to organize, what with two cons the same weekend. The lovely and talented Miss Katie handled DieCon in St. Louis while I was gallivanting about Nashville, and we had extra silliness to prepare for two cons at once. I don't know that we'll do that again, unless we could be sure to get Katie some backup - I understand it was more than a little stressful.

Still, the To-Do List of Doom got checked off in time and we hit the road, with the boy happily ensconced between booth fixtures and boxes of books. He is a patient kid. Then we discovered the entire state of Kentucky was under construction. Bad enough the slowdowns in the Rend Lake area of southern Illinois, but I swear Kentucky hates me.

We got to Stephen Reksten's place outside Nashville after midnight, and the boy was asleep as soon as his head hit the pillow. As in, I had to wake him up to remove his jeans. Adorable. Personally, I lasted about fifteen minutes.


Stephen slept in! Astounding. When 8 a.m. came and went and he was still sleeping, I worried that he maybe had a heart attack in his sleep or something. I also debated sliding into bed with him so he'd really have a heart attack when he woke up, but I am not that mean.


Instead, I ran to the store for some supplies and got to baking. I really love to bake, especially to decorate cakes, and I jump at the opportunity. So I whipped together a coffee cake, plus some chocolate chip cookies (which were INTENDED for the booth but some little munchers got to snacking) and a double-chocolate layer cake with boiled dark-cocoa frosting for Stephen.

See, I've been friends with Stephen Reksten since he was nineteen, I was seventeen and dinosaurs walked the earth. And one of the hilarious things about the Admiral is that chocolate works on him like booze works on normal people. I never come to visit without bringing a bar of dark chocolate. But since I discovered how to boil natural high-fat cocoa for a rich buttercream frosting... muahahaha.

Thursday was our tourist day. We began with brunch at the Pfunky Griddle, a place Sara Harvey knows that lets you make your own pancakes. The griddle is in the middle of the table and you get unlimited pitchers of batter, little containers of mixins... I keep describing this place to people and they look at me like I'm crazy. "If I want to make pancakes, I'll make them at home for free!" Yeah, but... it's cool! The pancake place was Sara's idea, and then she and her darling husband ordered tofu sandwiches instead.

Tofu. Seriously. In Nashville. They ate tofu. As though it were food.

If I'd had money, we'd have hit the Adventure Science Center or the Nashville Zoo, both places the boy would have loved. But since the world sucks right now, we went to the Opryland Hotel. If you've never been to this place, it is simply the coolest hotel in the world. There's a river runs through it - no, I'm serious - and the various wings each have a slightly different flavor to the vast indoor gardens and shops. I'm particularly fond of the New Orleans wing, where the signs along the walls came from real Nawlins pubs, and the waterfall in another wing.

When I am rich, I will stay at the Opryland Hotel.

I caught quite a few flowers for my photography collection, and the boy had a blast. We stopped by a Barnes and Noble for a reward - the boy got all A's and B's on his fourth-quarter report card (except for a C+ in math, and I can't throw stones for that). He also got first place in his class for the Advanced Reader program. Huzzah!

His present: TREASURE ISLAND. Kicking off Mom's Summer Reading Program. If he reads the book and does a book report for me, he will get another book AND a surprise. He doesn't know it, but the surprise is a day at a water park. Shh, no one tell him. I had to cancel our Six Flags season tickets this year, so it should be an extra surprise treat.

We canceled our usual Thursday-night meet-n-greet at Fido's - sniff - because His Fredness (chairman of Hypericon) said there would be stuff at the show. So Sara and I dolled up and attended. It was a nice crowd, sang happy birthday to the lovely Stephania Grimm (whose name I have apparently been mispronouncing for five years and no one told me) and we caught up a bit.

Fredness promised us readings, but they never happened. It's just as well. My zombies might put people off the pizza. Also, please note that Alethea Kontis has captured the only photo in existence of Sara Harvey not smiling.

Coming soon: Yeah, Donald, but what about the con??


  1. Anonymous8:37 PM

    OMG - that pancake place sounds like HEAVEN.

  2. The Pfunky Griddle is MADE OF AWESOME, maybe nmext year we can have a little Apex shindig over there!


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