Both of these have turned out to be surprising in different ways that I am coming to admire.
Wordstock, because apparently they are now being inclusive of genre fiction, whereas before I had become familiar with it as an event series that turned up its nose at horror, SF, or other types of “non-mainstream” (read: lowbrow) literature. Go WS. You are catching the vibe.
Orycon, because I had heard some pooh-pooing from people in the past about how it was primarily a con “for the fans” and did not have much in the way of value to those of us who write, create works of art or otherwise participate in putting on events and publications. But over the past several OC’s that I’ve attended, I’ve discovered that its hidden gem is that they have a LOT of very worthwhile writing and art workshops presented to you by a number of well known names in the field. Which would you rather attempt: Meeting your favorite author, name editor, or industry artist in a presentation room that has 1,000 other people in attendance? Or one with maybe 50 or even 25 people? Which one would help you be able to really get some good question/answer session and personal networking and feedback going on? In an atmosphere that is encouraging and inclusive of new potential talent? I rest my case.
Oh and to wrap things up for the end of summer, don’t miss the latest reading event at St. Johns Booksellers, and the ongoing Stone Soup reading series. Words is bustin out all over in Stumptown… I hope to see some friendly faces at one or more of these events coming up. If you spot me, come say hello. At least then I’ll know you’re reading my blog, if nothing else.. 😉