For the second year, I proposed myself as a participant for the Nebulas Science Fiction/Fantasy Writers Association (SFWA) convention, but wasn’t selected. I was on the fence about attending and agonized for several days but, at the last minute, decided to register for the online track. I’m glad I did.

In point of fact, I don’t feel like I learned all that much. I attended panels about novellas and novelettes, short fiction, genres, making a collection, religion, microfiction, LGBTQIA+ characters, and book promotion. The panels were fine, but I’ve been involved in publishing and marketing my own books now for long enough that these topics are mostly familiar. Even if I didn’t learn much new, that’s useful too: determining that there isn’t something obvious that I’ve been missing.

I spent a fair amount of time networking with people via Zoom. I met a bunch of new people and reconnected with a number of people I’d met before. Being unable to socialize much due to my health circumstances, I really value the opportunity to meet with people remotely.

One person I saw was someone I had clashed with in a different, text-based, online environment. I was somewhat concerned that it would be awkward but, as has typically happened with me, when you’re dealing with people face-to-face, someone that’s happy to flame and deride you in text, will instead be nice as pie. I like to think I’m pretty much the same person regardless of context and circumstances, so I’m always surprised when other people who will slam you in writing, will turn out to be perfectly nice to your face. Weird.

I would have liked to stay up the award ceremony, especially to hang out in the Zoom session to chat with people while it was going on. But the event, running on Pacific Time, didn’t start until 11pm and I just couldn’t make myself stay up that late. So went to bed early.