Traditionally my first post of the year is a look back at the previous year. I see no reason to do otherwise now. Let me then take a look at 2021 and see what went well and what – not so much.
I attended my first con in 2002, and 2021 was the first time since then when I was not physically present at any con. Yet this of course doesn’t mean I wasn’t attending cons – oh no. In fact I broke my personal record as I visited 21 events. Should I say 21 cons for year 2021? It may be a nice catchphrase but I didn’t plan it to be exactly that – it somehow happened ;). In fact I was a bit at one more con but I didn’t spend enough time there to feel I truly attended it.
Large majority of those events were online however close to the end of year a few decided to go hybrid. This includes SMOFCon Europe where I was responsible for online part and DisCon III. I think we – as community, have quite good grasp of online conventions. Yet going hybrid is still not a well known territory. I don’t mean those events were bad! I had a good time – I just believe that we will learn more and improve such experiences in the future.
When it comes to numbers per country:
– USA – 8
– Poland – 7
– UK – 2
– Ireland – 1
– Canada – 1
– Croatia – 1
– Portugal – 1
Those numbers look quite nice for me. I would love to visit more countries though.
What I regret is that I did not decide to attend any physical con. There were a few such events in Poland. For some of them I was not feeling fully well while for others I was too concerned with the infection rates. From the time perspective I regret I didn’t decide to attend those when I felt good. Right now though there is nothing I can do about it.
Fanzines and Fanwriting
I made a resolution last year to read more fanwriting. In a way I succeed – and in a way not. I definitely read more fanwriting than before but I had hopes to read even more. In total I finished reading 22 fanzines and one book of fanwriting. Maybe this year I will be able to beat it – we will see.
In summary of 2020 I mentioned about starting a fanzine. It didn’t have the name then but it does now – A~Zyn. I published three issues (and the fourth one is being prepared. If you consider Polish names of the months publishing schedule was in nice alliteration:
– Luty (February)
– Lipiec (July)
– Listopad (November)
I would love to publish four issues in 2022 but am not sure whether it will be manageable. Depends on how many article submissions I’ll receive.
Close to the end of 2020 I was recruited for the Promotions Division of Glasgow in 2024 Worldcon bid. It was (and still is!) an adventure. The fact that I beat my own record of cons visited in a year is directly related to my responsibilities of coordinating fan tables for Glasgow. I am happy to be a part of the team and I hope we will bring the Worldcon back to Glasgow after almost twenty years (previous one was in 2005).
For half a year I was sure that would be it. I mean there was no option for me to staff one Worldcon bid and on top of that be involved in another Worldcon. Yet I was wrong. I was asked to join Chicon 8 team as an Area Head for Polish programme track. This is a very interesting opportunity and I couldn’t refuse. So I agreed and joined the team. This is a big challenge but I hope that with the help from others we will succeed.
Sometimes I have a feeling I didn’t devote enough time to this blog. Yet when I look back it seems I posted exactly 26 posts in 2021 – average of one every two weeks. I am satisfied with this number. I would love to post more – like twice a week but I am aware it is not something I will manage to do. What I can hope for is however publishing convention reports a bit faster after the cons. I will try doing so this year.
And this would be it for the summary. The year was busy and tough in some ways. Yet from the fannish perspective I am quite happy.