Jennifer Brozek | Butting Heads with David Brin

Butting Heads with David Brin

Last weekend I was at Westercon. I’ve never been to a Westercon and it was much smaller/quieter than I expected. Over all, this was a blessing. While I am fine, I am still recovering from surgery and had just recovered from a cold.  So, I was a bit run down and less energetic than I normally am at a convention.

As always, the highlights for me are seeing people I rarely see. Conventions are like reunions. I spent a lot of time talking with people I knew, getting to know them better. But, I was also an old lady the entire convention—sitting a lot, going to bed at 10pm, taking it easy. Still, it was really nice to see old and new friends.

On to meeting David Brin and the title of this post. I moderated a lot of panels. Just before the first panel I had with David, I mentioned the last time I had seen him (the SFWA meeting in Reno) and we then had a communication misunderstanding that made us both of feel awful. I then cleared it up. We both felt better and, because we were sitting next to each other, we went for the side hug and cracked our heads together loud enough to be heard throughout the room. His head, my ear. Ow. I was afraid I actually hurt him. It was awkward and funny.

Later, when we met up again, we talked and I found him to be an absolute gentleman. Yes, he is a self-admitted “opinionated asshole” but he has focused his ire on the work that people put out—not the people. When it comes to people, David is wonderful. He really is. He makes each person feel like they are the only ones that matter.

I’m looking forward to possibly working with him. I think I did okay, too. Before he left on Sunday, he told me I was lovely and fierce.  (I am a firm moderator.)

Another excellent thing came out of critiquing for the Fairwood group. I had a chance to talk to Richard A. Lovett. He has had several dozen stories in Analog. He’s agreed to look at a couple of my sci-fi stories to tell me why they are always the bridesmaid stories and not the bride. I suspect this will be eye-opening and brutal.

Over all, the convention was good for me. I prefer more chaos but I really wasn’t up to it. I had fun and, in the end, that’s all that really matters.

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