Every year, I am faced with the same dreadful question. Will we be going to Dragon*con on Labor Day weekend? Every year, I look at the guest list and the panels planned in the various tracks that interest me, and I weigh the costs and the benefits.
More than the ticket price (which is not pocket change), I weigh the emotional toll the con takes on me. If you talk to anyone who attends, you will hear stories of amazing cosplay, freebies, dealer room amazingness and crazy quotes from fandom. You will hear about celebrities.
But mostly, you’ll hear about the crowds. The crowds, OMG the crowds. Some hotels had an hour long wait to get on the elevator to go up to rooms. A few years ago now, the participating hotels had to close off the lobby to anyone without a con badge or a hotel room key because the fire marshall said there were too many people inside the building.
The crowds are claustrophobic, stultifying, overwhelming to the point of absurdity. By and large the crowds are made up of people in amazing costumes who are super nice to talk to, though.
So I have to decide…. is it worth it? A 2-week long convention hangover where every ambient noise is too much?
Not this year.
Maybe next year.
I actually have some fantastic book promotion ideas for the con, including cajoling many of my friends to cosplay as Corpsmen….