Fandom Fest 2013 Report

Today is the first of the month, so I have a new Hot Flash for you.

I’m also participating in a Writing Exercise Blog Hop, so I’ve posted my favorite one at the end of this report.

Okay. This is the third Fandom Fest we’ve been to.

Here is the report on the first one. No, really, that stuff really happened! Really!

Here is the report on the second one. A little less dramatic.

So we come to this year.

Last year, the price of parking changed every time one asked, so this year, we got a room and had an extremely kind friend drive us over and help us lug everything up there. It would be so nice to be close to the exhibition hall!

Ha. Ha. The exhibition hall was on the far end of the Convention Center. One could either walk two blocks outside, pushing a cart loaded with books and display stands across two intersections and pavement, or one could walk half a mile through a pedway. Then, when one got to the Convention Center, one had to thread the maze to find one’s way to the exhibit hall.

We got lots of exercise this weekend. Lots and lots and lots and lots of exercise.

TonyWe set up with the other Hydra authors at the Hydra book booth. Here is a picture of the awesomesauce Tony Acree, author of Hand of God. Hand of God is a paranormal thriller, set in the Louisville Metro area. It’s about a bounty hunter whose brother sells his soul to the devil and the devil gives the bounty hunter 24 hours to find a certain girl before his brother goes south. Why, yes, I did hear Tony say that about a hunnert million times, why do you ask? 😀 Tony snapped and posted many, many pictures of attendees.

We all memorized each others’ spiels so we could cover for each other while we did panels or walked around.

Here was my favorite attendee. I chased her down the aisle, shouting, “Abs! Abs! Abs! Abs! Abs!” No, she isn’t the actress who plays Abby, but I don’t know that I like that actress because I don’t know anything about her, but I love Abby and this was Abby. Do you understand me? This lady did.Abs

2ndBestHawkHere is the second-best Mohawk EVER! The best was our #4 daughter’s, the one that earned her the nickname Spike. I suspect his is like this for the same reason #4 Daughter’s was: If he doesn’t have it sticky-up, it covers all the short bits and looks like a conventional haircut.

The magnificent K. A. DaVur was also with us and has posted a buncha pictures, including two of her incarnations. Yes, she sported a different costume every day! She’s the author of HUNTER THE HORRIBLE, about a bunch of kids who are convinced their teacher is a real, live vampire.

I didn’t get to hang out with any of the stars, alas, because it never occurred to me to try. I did run across Stan Lee in the hall one morning, though, and wished him good morning. He nodded as if he would take it under advisement. I think #4 Daughter wants to have my eyeballs bronzed because they saw him in person. Maybe I’ll leave them to her in my will.

My very most favorite thing of all was Graham Cracker, the cutest mouse inna world. She was running around on an artist’s table, and she let me pick her up after she sniffed my hands a little.GrahamCracker

And here are a couple other pictures I loved.

"Guess what? We're not really Japanese."
“Guess what? We’re not really Japanese.”


I understand there were some logistical problems with the festival, and the Fest organizers saw that the Literary Track was hidden with a zeal equalled only to Area 51, but we still had a blast. Stephen Zimmer, the guy in charge of the Literary Track itself, is unparalleled in capability, kindness, efficiency, resourcefulness, and flexibility, and he kept everything together and everybody in Literary in good spirits. We loves him, we does.

If we go again next year, we will NOT stay at The Galt House. Parking = $12/night. Wi-Fi = $5.97/night for up to two devices; if more than 2 devices access from the room OR you access after midnight, the charge doubles. We had black mold in our bathroom, no plastic bags in the trash cans, and one partial roll of toilet paper was provided for three middle-aged women. Not pretty. Not nice. A real coffee pot, which was nice, but no microwave. A “refrigerator” which they must have turned on when we checked in, because it was barely cool when we put our food in, but everything was frozen solid by Sunday morning.

Still, now that it’s over, we’re glad we went. We sold many books, met many nice people, and had many laughs.

For another take, read about Carol Preflatish’s experience, and also the story SHE tells about how she got tossed out of The Galt House when she was a teenager.

MY FAVORITE WRITING PROMPT/EXERCISE: Write down ten things you know about a character you want to write or have written about. Now ask ten questions you don’t know the answers to and let the character answer in their own voice.



I was born in Louisville, Kentucky, but now live in the woods in southern Indiana. Though I only write fiction, I love to read non-fiction. The more I learn about this world, the more fantastic I see it is.

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One thought on “Fandom Fest 2013 Report

  1. KatFrench

    August 1, 2013 at 8:55am

    The Man and I attempted to go to Fandom Fest on Saturday. After twenty minutes, he had a raging migraine and it looked like there was about 2 hours of line still to go, so we gave up and had a very nice lunch at the Troll Pub.

    We also bumped into Stan Lee in the Galt House lobby on our way in. Weirdly, I could swear he was wearing the exact same clothes I’d seen him in the week before at Comic Con in San Diego. He must be one of those guys who has five versions of the same outfit that he just likes.

    We might go next year, but if we do we’ll preorder tickets. I’m not sure we will, though. It seems like it’s becoming much more about celebrity autographs than anything else.

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      August 1, 2013 at 9:40am

      I don’t think it was any better for people who preordered. T and Ginny and I did okay because we were vendors. We sold books, but we wouldn’t go to have fun. Although we had fun selling books and people-watching.

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      • KatFrench

        August 1, 2013 at 9:46am

        That was pretty much my experience with SDCC. I think I was mostly able to enjoy it because I was working; it kept me too busy to be anxious about all the people and noise. I was able to just people watch and work, which worked for me.

        I am traditional-fun impaired.

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        • Author

          Marian Allen

          August 1, 2013 at 9:52am

          Me, too. I would have taken a break and decompressed in the room, but it was like the Bataan Death March to get from the Vendor Room to The Galt House.

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  2. Tony Acree

    August 1, 2013 at 9:00am

    I loved every minute hanging with “the girls”. If its any consolation, i hear my own spiel in my sleep. I learned a lot at FandomFest. Thanks for making it fun!

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      August 1, 2013 at 9:41am

      Thank YOU for the same thing. You work the crowd like nobody’s business!

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  3. Jane

    August 1, 2013 at 9:34am

    Thanks for the thriiling report!
    Wish I was there. Glad I didn’t have to WALK everywhere. Might have had to crawl, you know?
    Love the pix.
    What happened on the panels? anything tellable?

    Permalink  ⋅ Reply
    • Author

      Marian Allen

      August 1, 2013 at 9:50am

      Oh, yeah, the panels. There were panels, weren’t there? lol

      There was no official signage or directions, the Literary Track wasn’t even in the program book (which cost $10), the maps were wrong, the room numbers changed like the staircases at Hogwarts, and one never knew from one minute to another which escalators were going to be blocked or turned off. So the panels weren’t so well attended at first. Then Stephen Zimmer, the seriously awesome Lit Track wrangler, hand-wrote panel schedules and posted them on whatever rooms were current and spread the location by word-of-mouth, and attendance picked up.

      I was on five panels. The rest of the time, I was selling books, so I didn’t get to attend anybody else’s. Nobody sold books unless they were RIGHT THERE SELLING BOOKS, so I couldn’t be away from the table for long.

      My favorite was A Writer’s Guide To Drinking, because we brought potable aids. I told them I don’t drink anything but coffee while I write, because when I’m writin’ I’m writin’ and when I’m drinkin’ I’m drinkin’. They pronounced that an acceptable answer. lol

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  4. Jen Christopherson

    August 1, 2013 at 5:27pm

    Marian, you have done it again! I feel almost as if I were there with you! Ooh! I can’t wait until I get to go to one! It sounds like a great deal of hard work with a large sprinkling of fun!

    I read your previous experiences and found a great deal to laugh about as well! Love, love, love your blog!

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      August 2, 2013 at 10:50am

      Glad you enjoy the blog, Jen. HUGS! Yes, if you accept the annoyances and inconveniences as part of the con experience, you’ll at least have fun in retrospect. Pro tip: If you’re in an elevator at a spec fic con and it’s already crowded and somebody looks like adding to the crush, just say, “Room for one more,” and they’ll step back and wait for the next elevator.

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  5. Charmaine Clancy

    August 1, 2013 at 10:25pm

    Fandom Fest sounds a lot like our Supanova expo. I LOVE all the cosplay stuff and it’s a great place to sell books. We have another coming up in November, I can’t wait!

    And very good writing prompt – I sometimes do diary posts from my character’s point of view, can bring up some surprising results.

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      August 2, 2013 at 10:51am

      I was selling YOUR book at the con. I’d see a zombie (YUCK) and ask if they’d read your MY ZOMBIE DOG. I couldn’t help myself! lol

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  6. Janice Spina

    August 2, 2013 at 6:38pm

    Hi Marian,

    Nice to meet you. Thank you for connecting. Interesting subjects on your blog. Best Regards, Janice

    Permalink  ⋅ Reply
  7. K.A.DaVur

    August 4, 2013 at 11:14am

    I had such a lovely time with all of you. The kindness shown was astounding. I’m not sure if I’d call them costumes, though. Maybe. . .facets?

    Permalink  ⋅ Reply

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