Sometimes (fairly often actually) my work world and my 'fun' world intersect. That was the case just over a week ago, when I attended Anticipation - the 67th WorldCon (World Science Fiction Convention) in Montreal.
Neil Gaiman was the rock star of the event, ushered and escorted into film presentations, readings, signings and other activities (usually a few minutes late). At a lower degree of fame the lines between guests and fans blurred with various authors showing up on panels and walking around amidst the unwashed hordes (this description became literal on very few occasions). I checked out sessions on the study of sf (and presented - this was the work part), the philosophy of science, science blogging, DIY tech and Michael Jackson's "Thriller"... I attended readings (including Robert Sawyer's) watched a film (Coraline), wandered through the art show, and had a discussion about theories of space and time... I also came home with a lot more books, after telling myself I wouldn't buy a single one. (sigh)
One of the events I was least expecting and most pleased to discover was Melissa Auf der Maur's presentation of her new short film, Out of Our Minds. I was so intrigued and impressed that I collaborated on a review of the evening for Hellbound.ca. In a strange quirk of choice and probability, Auf der Maur's backing band for the film soundtrack - The Entrance Band - is performing in Hamilton this Wednesday (with Nebula at the Casbah, Aug 19, 9pm).
Cory Doctorow also caught my interest through a couple of activities he was involved with. I'd heard of him, and discovered his blog, boingboing.net in recent months, but that was about the extent of it. He had Neil Gaiman reading a short story as part of a short story project that's also an experiment in new distribution and marketing models for 21st century media (he's a supporter of the "free ebook"). Doctorow's website and blog are well-stocked with info and opinions and, I'm sure, explanations of the project.
Would I go to WorldCon again? Maybe. It's an international convention, so it's unlikely to be this close to home any time soon, and though you get a lot of value for your money, it's not a cheap event to attend. Still, I don't regret the investment.