I’m at the airport, getting ready to board a plane (one of my least favorite things ever). And although it’s the weekend of GenCon Indy, sadly, that’s not where I’m heading.
In fact, I may be heading to the “Reversed” GenCon: Las Vegas.
In Tarot, when cards are dealt upside down, they’re termed “reversed.” In some ways, reversed cards are the polar opposite, but in other ways they’re just another way at looking at the subject. Las Vegas is all about gaming. GenCon is all about gaming. Two different sorts, to be sure, but they’re related. Las Vegas is ungodly hot this time of year, and so is Indianapolis–one’s just a lot more humid. I have been to both places and made the ill-advised decision to get spectacularly drunk the night before my flight out. I’ve been thinking of the other ways that these two potential trips are both different and the same:
1. Dice figure heavily in both. But in Vegas, they frown on you bringing your own to the table.
2. People in weird costumes will walk around posing. But at GenCon, they’re much better.
3. People are always giving me business cards. Except in Las Vegas, they’re for prostitutes and at GenCon they’re for authors (who don’t like that comparison, so stop thinking it).
4. People give me odd looks–in Vegas, because I’m dressed too casual and at GenCon because (aside from the WotC uniform) I was always dressed too fancy.
(Another big “reversal”: I highly doubt anyone will come up to me in Vegas and ask if I’m Erin M. Evans, the author of The God Catcher, which they LOVED. Then again, when no one does it, in Vegas, I won’t feel bummed.*)
Here’s a big difference: Las Vegas is the sort of place where I’m prepared to not be myself. I’m prepared to look chic and trendy and have my nails unchipped and my makeup done (until I sweat it off). Once I’m off the plane, the ponytail holder is going in the toiletries bag–the hair only goes up with purpose.
A little of this is fun, in my book. I like pretending I’m glamorous and I care about this stuff. I do, a little. Mostly in erratic spurts.
But the nice thing about conventions is, I feel like it’s a lot easier to just be yourself. People might be confused why I decided to rock a silk party dress to the Dragonlance Anniversary Party last year, but it wasn’t a big deal. There’s definitely not a big feminist gamer presence at GenCon (though I hear there’s a cool Women in Gaming track I wish I could go to) but I still found places to have great conversations. There’s something for everyone, and everyone has something.
*If you are one of these people, and you would like to tell someone you think my book was awesome and you can’t wait to read the next one, please seek out Susan Morris, James Wyatt, or Bill Slavicsek. Feel free to lay it on thick. 😉