Day 2 of Dragon*Con did not begin so well for me. Saturday morning was the first time I’ve ever lamented not having a hotel room for the con, because I missed the parade!
Since I live in the Atlanta area and it only takes me approximately 10-15 minutes to get downtown, I usually drive back-and-forth to the convention every year. Since my first Dragon*Con in 2007, I’ve never been able to attend the Dragon*Con parade, and I had made plans to attend this year. However, my Blackberry had different plans, as it decided to reset itself sometime during the night, and I awoke on Saturday morning late, and to a white error screen instead of an alarm tone. I was SO. UPSET. that I’d missed the parade yet again, but I consider it a lesson well learned: I definitely plan to stay downtown next year, even if only for Friday night.
Moving right along, I got to Dragon*Con just in time to see the True Blood panel for the second day in a row. This time – in addition to previous guests Sam Trammell, Kristin Bauer van Straten, and Nelsan Ellis – Michelle Forbes joined the panel. I’m assuming the stars were able to get some rest, because they seemed more lively on Saturday than they did the previous day. I also think that the questions that were asked were better, and with Michelle joining the panel there was more variety on topics that were discussed, since fans could now ask questions about the whole Maenad storyline.
One of the sweet things about the panel was Kristen speaking of the “father/daughter” type relationship that we’ve seen evolve between Eric and Pam over the past couple of episodes; she actually began to choke up while speaking of it, and it seemed to be an emotional moment for her. There were lots of sighs in the audience, and I think it spoke to the strengths of the writers that she could be so touched by a scene like that.
After the True Blood panel, my friend Ashley and I went to grab lunch at the Metro Cafe (which was not as crowded as the more popular restaurants and the food was probably better), then we had planned to go to separate panels at 2pm. Her – to see Sean Astin (“Samwise Gamgee” from LOTR), and me – the Twilight panel with Tyson Houseman (Quil), Chaske Spencer (Sam) and Daniel Cudmore (Felix). Needless to say, due to the huge crowds and ridiculously long lines, neither one of us made it to the panels. I would have been very upset, but since I’d had a chance to see/meet all three of them at separate Twilight events earlier this year (Tyson and Chaske at the New Moon DVD launch party and Daniel at Twilight Night), it was okay. Also, did I mention that I ran into Tyson and Chaske in the food court? Yeah, my friends were jealous! Anyway, Ashley and I decided instead to travel down to the large vendor room in the Marriott.
The vendor room is a very fun place to visit, especially if you have plans to shop during Dragon*Con. T-shirts, toys/collectibles, trading cards, art, props, videos – you can find all of that and more in the vendor room. My friend Kat – who had joined us by this time – took me to her trading card dealer, Tony of Triangle Cards. I added the recently released “Heroes and Villains” trading card binder and card set to my collection, but struck out trying to purchase the Half-Blood Prince trading card binder, which I still do not have.
That evening, I participated in my very first Dragon*Con panel: “Freaks and Geeks in Harry Potter“. My co-panelists were: Racheline Maltese, MB Weston, and Davey Beauchamp. Racheline is the author of “The Harry Potter Book of Trifles, Trivias and Particularities“, and I’ve known her since I attended one of her DC panels on Adult Fan Fiction (very fun discussion!) at my first Dragon*Con back in 2007. MB Weston is a fantasy writer, author of the fantasy series, “The Elysian Chronicles”. Davey is best known for the “Writers for Relief” anthology series. Seriously, I couldn’t have asked for a better group of HP geeks to break my panel virginity with.
Our panel was scheduled to begin at 7pm, and people started coming into our panel room around 6:30. Ten minutes later, the room was full. We were all surprised! I guess the YA Lit people underestimated how popular that topic would be! We talked about Luna and Neville and all of the other “weird” and “unusual” characters in the series. Lots of audience participation, and a fun topic! I had a great time, and hope to have a chance to do it again!
After the HP panel, I tried to go to a panel for season 6 of “Supernatural”. However, I’m very much a spoilerphobe for that show, and the agenda for the panel was full of spoilers!! I practically ran out of the room! Decided to hang out with my friends, and people-watch, take photos, act silly and basically have a great time. I got to see some old friends, and got a chance to meet some online friends in person, which is always a fun thing for me. Needless to say, my day ended a lot better than it began!