What is OutlantaCon 2015?
OutlantaCon 2015 is a scifi convention for the gay geek, and contains panels, workshops, gaming, tournaments, and media guests. OutlantaCon began back in 2009. It’s a chance for LGBT geeks and their allies to get away and hang out and talk about the fandoms they love, in an environment where people are free to be who they really are. This is my favorite convention of the year. When it ends, I’m sad to leave. The people here are my friends, and I love seeing them again and making new friends.
She’s Got Moxie
Moxie Magnus is the Chief Cosmetologist on board the starship Enterprise, and always shows up in a classy Starfleet uniform. I nabbed two pictures this time of her in more casual gear, and as the Princess from another fandom. I love this queen and she is one of the people I look forward to seeing at OutlantaCon each year.
OutlantaCon 2015 Media Guest – David Yost
I shook hands with David Yost, who played the Blue Power Ranger in the original series, and thanked him for the positive influence he’d had on my three kids when they were growing up. He said to tell my kids thank you for watching. I said I would, and added that they were all grown up now and had kids of their own. As I walked away, I thought “Oh geez… I probably just made him feel really old.” Wasn’t my intention! He is a funny guy and a polite one as well. It was a privilege to meet him.
Some of the panels I attended at OutlantaCon were DC Comics on TV (Darren Nowell and Vandy Beth Glenn), Dr Who / Torchwood (Ally Blue, TC Blue, Java Green, and Davey Beauchamp), Does Blogging make me an Author? (Kage Alan), The Whedonverse (Shae Connor), Writing as the Voice of the Opposite Sex (Ally Blue), Outland – an intro to the Australian LGBT comedy (Keith Castelan and Aimee McCarron from NerdFun).
I presented on three panels: Building an Audience Online (with Shae Connor), How to Handle Guests on Your Blog (with Kage Alan), and alone for Giveaways that Save Authors Money. The last one gave details on how to create several things that could be used for giveaways even if you are not a crafting-type person (no fingers were hot glued during the presentation — all work was done on the computer!). For a sample, click THIS LINK. This one is quite elaborate, but it’s for my new book and I spent a lot of time on it. I use these as giveaways for everyone when I do blog tours, and people seem to love them.
OutlantaCon 2015 Minions!
There were parties on Saturday night competing for a cool prize — their hotel room being paid for next year. At the first one, they served Twinkies (you know – the yellow ones you buy in box labeled Hostess?) made to look like Minions. I bit one’s head off and felt terribly guilty for all of 2 seconds. It was delicious. Had a bottle of great beer to wash it down. That party was to celebrate the birthday of con attendee Gerald Blackwell, who happens to edit for my company, The Author’s Secret. At the Princess Party there was pink champagne punch and lots of bows and pretty pink; the Underoos Party had well… gorgeous Underoo-clad gentleman. Jose Q hugged me — it was interesting explaining to my husband why I hugged a guy in his underwear. LOL But I see him every year and it was his party, so it’s all good. Then I went to Kiernan Kelly’s party for the new anthology release. Her husband Bud served as bartender (appropriate, no?) and poured up a shot that tasted like powdered donuts. It was delish! I slept like a freaking rock after all those parties. In fact, I fell over and crashed and totally missed Sock Puppet Theater (Rats!). This is where authors use sock puppets to act out parts of a story while reading a scene from his or her book. I’ve been wanting to go, and every year I promise myself I will. It starts at midnight, and I’m such an early riser that I usually can’t stay awake long enough. This year, I stayed in the hotel and thought for sure I would make it. *sigh* Next year!
The other minions I want to mention are the fabulous moderators who took care of guests and attendees. PR Chairman Lee Cox-Querry organized a crew of people to ensure everyone had facilities and logons, who made sure we got notices of how much time we had left, and that any issues in the rooms were dealt with. They brought us water, made sure the lights were on or off, and that generally — everything went smoothly. I’d love for you to know who they all are. Please visit the Outlantacon Facebook page to see. If I name names, I will forget someone, and I don’t want to do that. They were all kind and helpful. I hope each of them does it again next year.
Dealers, Steampunk, Cthulu, and Costumes
The dealer room was fantastic. I bought a key piece of jewelry to use as a special giveaway for an upcoming book, and a steampunk gun. I hope to work with the gun’s creator to design and build a weapon for the Praetorian Guard from my books. More about that later. Cthulu arrived as a soft, fuzzy, green familiar in the arms of Ally Blue. She let me hold him, and I found him affectionate and sweet. I stayed away from his tentacles, though! I didn’t get pictures of the costumes (except for the Moxie ones and one other), but this year they were amazing. There was an OutlantaCon 2015 Costume Contest and the winner dressed like Steampunk Belle from Beauty and the Beast. There was a rainbow angel, and so many more. Please visit the Outlantacon Facebook page and see pictures other guests took. I was impressed!
Fans and Friends
One of the best parts of any convention is seeing friends and meeting fans. OutlantaCon is small enough to spend quality one-on-one time with people. On Sunday, I sat with two guys who shared with me how to use Tumblr, and I told them about Pinterest. I got to show them my Luc and Rah board with pics of the heroes from Surrender Love and the places they will be going on their honeymoon (Surrender Trust). I had a chance to hang out with Angela and give her a huge poster I had made of the galaxy. I explained how the worlds came to be and why there is such a diversity of names. I explained about having a story for every one of the empires listed. She sat there for a moment and then said, “This is going to be an epic story.” Made my whole day to hear that. Nothing is better than being able to share a story with someone and see the lights come on as they get what you’re trying to do. Want to see a ginormous image of the map? Click here. It’s high resolution, so I wouldn’t suggest trying to view it on a small mobile device. You can find other large images on my Wallpaper page.
I want to offer a special shout out to several people. Lee Martindale for her excellent advice. Lee is a special person in my life and I appreciate her. Kage Alan, Kiernan Kelly, Ally Blue, TC Blue (no relation to Ally), Java Green, Shae Connor, Moxie Magnus, and Keith Bailey. It was great seeing you again. I want to thank the staff of OutlantaCon as well, Edward deGruy, Lee Cox-Querry, and so many more!
Outlantacon 2015 was the best ever. I’ve been going every year since it began, and last year, they presented me (along with Kiernan Kelly who originally told me about it) with an honorary lifetime membership. I love going, and plan to be there every year. I hope you’ll come to OutlantaCon next year, May 13-15, 2016.