It should not be surprising that more and more conventions are going hybrid. I was very happy to see that Boskone 59 went this way. As you may remember I enjoyed the last Boskone and was happy to be able to attend it online this year too. Of course I was interested to see how going hybrid would work this time.
My first convention this year was a hybrid one. I was attending it only virtually as it was held way too far from where I live. Yet it was fun to be there. And to help – helping is always fun.
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.
DisCon III may not be the first hybrid convention yet for sure it was the first hybrid Worldcon. This means it came with its own set of challenges. The situation was very unique (as it was the case for CoNZealand) and some of the solutions were not tested before. So how did it go?
It was known that this will come – the time of hybrid conventions. I am not sure which one was the first – it is possible I missed something. Yet for sure SMOFCon Europe was one of the first. I had the chance to work on it. It was an interesting endeavour. I made some mistakes, I learned a lot and I had a good time.
This category is even more difficult than Best Proffesional Artist. The level of the presented works is amazing and choosing the order on the ballot here was a challenge to me. Once again I concentrate more on how I like the art and not necessarily on the deeper interpretation.
Imladris is a very special convention to me. It was my first SFF con back in 2003. It was also Imladris that was was my 200th convention two years ago. This is why I was sad that last year we didn’t have it. Instead there were regular meetings spread over the few months – yet it is not the same. This year however the team decided to held a virtual convention. The plans were to have an event smaller than usual.
I love Ireland and I love Irish fandom. I enjoyed my time at my first in person Ocoton, my first virtual Octocon and of course at Dublin 2019 an Irish Worldcon. Although you cannot read about it here I also spent some fabulous time and Shamrokon (Eurocon 2014). YYou should not be surprised that I attended this year’s Octocon. It was held virtually and therefore was easily accessible for me.
Best Professional Artist is quite tough for me to write about. Firstly it is easier to judge a single work than a whole year of someone’s creativity. Secondly I am not well versed in interpreting visual arts. So instead of trying to interpret the works I am rather concentrating on my “do I like it?” feeling.
Copernicon 2021 did something remarkable. They decided not only to reproduce their venue in the IT environment. They reproduced large part of the old city in Toruń. There were some issues (I’ll cover them later) but in general what they did was absolutely amazing.