You Say Not Working, I Say Networking

All in all, given that my prior convention experience was the trip Jason, a couple of other friends, and I took to Otakon in 2001, I wasn’t really sure what to expect from Boskone. In the end, I think I’ll settle for pleasantly surprised.

Though no deal for my long-awaited first novel was struck, I did meet a number of notable people in, as we science-fiction writers say, the field. For instance, George R.R. Martin and I became fast friends.

When I asked how he keeps track of the elaborate storylines and numerous characters in his epic fantasy series, A Song of Ice and Fire, George replied: “I’ve been living in this world since 1991. These characters are more real to me than most of the people I meet. I mean, I’ll forget all of you fifteen minutes after this is over.”

And during the middle of the coffee break session I attended with Cory Doctorow, he absent-mindedly tore up his nametag and began folding origami paper cranes. I managed to save one before they got thrown away.

He continued this strange fixation at the last panel I went to. I hear compulsive origami is quickly supplanting heroin addiction as the menace to watch in 2006.

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When I asked how he keeps track of the elaborate storylines and numerous characters in his epic fantasy series…

When those people who write epic fantasy books write them, do they know in advance that it’s going to be a series? I have wondered if the events that unfold over the course of 6-7 books *just happened* to fit together so nicely, or if they had the basic idea in their head the whole time, or if after the first book does well they mock up the stories of the next five, or whatever.

A few people asked Martin if he knew what the end of his series was going to be. His analogy was that he certainly knew where the trip was going, but he doesn’t know every detour, roadside attraction, or hitchhiker along the way.

Can’t speak for Robert Jordan. I hear he’s gotten accustomed to eating gold-plated Eggo waffles for breakfast every morning.

my prior convention experience was the trip Jason, a couple of other friends, and I took to Otakon in 2001

PAX 2005 doesn’t count?

I hear compulsive origami is quickly supplanting heroin addiction as the menace to watch in 2006.

Definitely. One of my students last semester couldn’t help but fold up, even during class. She even left the sad remnants of her addiction lying around at the end of lab; I had to clean them up for her on numerous times. It was getting so bad I was considering calling in the campus police to confront her. I wonder if there’s anywhere in the city with a paper exchange program.



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