Wiscon 37: Sunday, May 26th 2013

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Sunday’s bittersweet at Wiscon. It’s a day of awesome programming, but also the last full day before it’s over for another year.

I found I’d highlighted about 4 things for each time-slot, but decided against trying to get in more than one thing in each. I continued my exploration of class that I started at yesterday’s panel at “Class Markers: The Obvious and the Subtle.” This one focused more on patterns of speech, closeness to family (apparently working class folks tend to be closer to their families and see more of them) and such things as decorating styles. Working class people tend to talk in terms of stories and anecdotes and examples; middle class people in terms of abstractions and statistics. There was a passing mention of politics; one panelist thought that the Republican party knew how to relate to working-class speech patterns and therefore were easier to understand, while the Democrats tended to be boring and unrelatible.

After a foray into the Dealers’ Room, I went up to the Strange Horizons tea party. I found a lot of people I knew, including one of my Clarion classmates I didn’t at first recognize because he’s a man now. It was good to catch up. I also finally met one of my online critique group, whose work I’ve enjoyed without actually knowing who she was. Wiscon’s a wonderful place for meetings.

I went with Julie to “Cousin of Return of Sibling of Revenge of Not Another F’ing Race Panel.” All the panelists were people of color, but it was *not* about race. This was set up as a game show, with a huge yellow dice and questions from the audience for the panel to respond to. I bailed fairly soon, though it was raucous good fun. I don’t watch TV and see few movies, so I didn’t get most of the references and kept going Huh? Who?

We met Karen Joy Fowler for an hour or so, up in the Governor’s Club, where Karen, Kater and Julie are staying, (but I am not). It’s a limited-access “executive floor.” We talked about what we’ve been doing and caught up since we met last.

capitol building madisonDzombie on the back of her headinner was at a burger place on the far side of the Capitol Building. It was crowded; we sat at the bar so we could eat quickly and return for the Guest of Honor speeches. Just before we left, someone told Kater he’d really enjoyed her first book (“Seeing Things” – the first book in the Kit Melbourne series) and so had bought all the others in the series. (She has them available both as e-books and as paperbacks.)

We walked back past the Capitol building. A statue on the steps appeared to have a zombie face on the back of her head. But on closer inspection, it was just a chignon.

joan slonczewski GOH speechAfter the Guest of Honor speeches, the Tiptree Award speech and celebration, and the announcing of next year’s Guests of Honor (Hiromi Goto and N.K. Jemisin!) it was time for the parties.

[Read Jo Walton’s speech here: Characters, Complicity and Caring: My Wiscon Speech ]

jo walton GOH speech

But rather than party-hopping, Kater and I settled in on the couch at the quiet but energized Clarion West party, and talked all evening. We hadn’t had a chance to catch up properly since the last Wiscon, and a lot’s happened since then.

I ran into Ellen Kushner, who was sporting a fine mustache. She said the Genderfloomp party was still on, and I should swing by because the costumes were amazing. So I did, and they were. The music was so loud that my tolerance for the room itself was about 5 minutes, but the hallway outside was full of people I knew, and I stayed and chatted for a bit before calling it a day.

Now it’s time to write this and pack and plan for tomorrow’s activities and departure.

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