Im back from the Asylum!
That’s right, folks, they couldn’t hold me! (Insert maniacal laugh).
Well, there was a lot of build up, a lot of nerves, and a lot of planning my outfits for the Asylum Convention in Lincoln last weekend, but it finally came and went in the blink of an eye. As my first convention, first Steampunk gathering, and first appearance/signing as an author, it couldn’t have been a better experience if I’d tried. The people were lovely, the weather was fantastic (although my wool waistcoat took a bit of a sweat-beating, I can tell you!), and I’m officially addicted. Even Laura, who’s nowhere near the level of geek that I am (at least not on the same subjects. What she doesn’t know about Shakespeare isn’t worth knowing) demanded that we go back next year. It’d be rude to refuse, right?
Suffice to say, it was pretty damned great. The costume competition was a particular high point, and the Tea Duelling championships had me cheering, rolling with laughter and booing like a pantomime dame. I have a video of my editor, Peter, in one of the early duels. Take a look…
The whole convention was a blast, really. If I tried to give you a blow by blow account I’d be here forever, so I’ll do a whistlestop tour. Favourite bits in no particular order:
1. The Bazaar with all the gadgets and gizmos and clothes, most of them handmade by some incredibly talented people.
2. Filling the grounds of Lincoln castle for an attempt at breaking the Guinness Book of Records’ “most Stemapunks in one place”. You should have seen us all! We can’t confirm that we did it officially…but I reckon we smashed it. We did a bloody mexican wave. That deserves an honourary mention at the very least.
3. Meeting the other authors, who were all lovely and very good with the advice. Raven Dane, who won this year’s best book award (and got all Gweneth on us…by her own admission). Jonathan Green who I had no idea it was him until he introduced himself. Aren’t internet pics so confusing? People look nothing like their online selves in real life. I unfortunately didn’t get to meet Robert Rankin of Sam Stone,which is a shame because I was hoping that some of their mojo would rub off on me with a handshake (damn and double damn), but they both seemed lovely from a distance.
4. Meeting the Inspired Quill team in person for the first time! As it turns out, we had a riot, sitting inthe pub and geeking out talking about Star Trek, Warehouse 13 and every other cultural reference we could think of. Eyeing up the revolving centrepiece in the Chinese restaurant while quoting from the opening scenes of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom was particular favourite of mine. (The diamond Lao, the deal was for the diamond!)
Anyway, without boring you anymore, here are some more photos. I’ve removed the ones where I look a proper nonce which is basically all of them (I am NOT photo friendly)…but here you go