I’m here at SFContario in Toronto and have a few minutes before my first event of the day. I’ve been going to science fiction conventions since 1979 and always enjoy seeing old friends – and making new ones. After all these years I’m still surprised that there are some people in Canadian SF that I don’t know – but of course new writers enter the field, every week or so, thus it never gets truly old.

This is the first convention I’ve attended in nearly three years where I haven’t had to spend my entire time alternating between panels and the dealers’ room. I decided to come simply as a writer this time and left my publisher hat at home. It makes for a much more relaxing time and I seem more able to just sit and chat without thinking about where I need to be next.

The Guests of Honour include Peter Watts who I’ve known for years and Saladin Ahmed whose books I know. Hopefully by the end of the convention I’ll know him too.

Last night I attended an autograph session and sold a few books – which was a nice bonus. I also went to the pin ceremony – wherein everyone who has been nominated for an Aurora Award for the first time gets a very nice commemorative pin. Many of the people from Ottawa asked me to pick theirs up for them so I wound up with six in my pocket. What am I offered?

I attended the Canadian Science Fiction Association AGM this morning and soon will head off to participate in my first panel of the day on Economics and Speculative fiction. Later in the day I’ll be talking about Publishing in the Digital Age before finishing off with a panel on future energy sources. I’ll spend dinner with friends tonight and take in any room parties that might be on offer.

Tomorrow is the big event – the Aurora Awards brunch and presentation. I’m up for an award for Strange Bedfellows but even if I don’t win I may have to pack some hardware home as I’ve promised to accept the award for four other nominees. If all goes well, I’ll be very busy.

Finally, I’ll appear on one last panel on Multiculturalism in SF – where I will meet Saladin if I haven’t managed it before. Then it’s a long train ride home where I can relax and read submissions to Bundoran Press.

And that’s ten minutes.



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