This year marks the ten-year anniversary of when Teija and I started attending Dragon Con. (Excuse me, but where did all of that time go? Did we enter some sort of wormhole without my knowledge?) That first year, we didn’t really know what we were getting into. We just showed up on Friday afternoon, got our badges, and hit the Con floor… where we were promptly overwhelmed at the sheer number of people in costumes, the panel options, and the confusing maps of the hotels.
Ten years later and we’re pretty sure we’ve got this Dragon Con thing down. Now it’s Thursday that’s a flurry of badge pickups, room check-ins, drinks, and hugs from friends in the lobby. Panels and official events kickoff first thing Friday morning, so we’ve learned to prep our schedules, check with the app, and come up with a game plan for the day over breakfast at Chick-fil-A. There are so many awesome things that I want to try and do everything, even though I know it’s not physically possible and I am forced to narrow it down to my “must sees.”
So, here’re my “must sees” for this year:
After ten years of attending the same con, I’ve picked up a few friends along the way. People from all over the States (and a few from overseas) make the trip to Dragon Con every year and it’s always great to share a meal, grab a drink, or attend a party with them. Since I relocated to Nashville this past spring, this year also gives me the opportunity to catch up with local Atlanta friends who I haven’t seen since I made the move.
And, as always, it’s quality BFF time for Teija and me. 🙂
Kelly Sue DeConnick
This is the first year that I am super excited about the Comics track. I’ve been reading comics since I was in middle school, but didn’t pay too much attention to who was writing them until recently. Kelly Sue writes the Captain Marvel and Pretty Deadly series, both of which are excellent, and I’m really looking forward to a chance to chat with her about her take on Carol Danvers. And thank her for being the person to finally get Teija completely hooked on comics!
And for any Carol Corps members who are attending Dragon Con this year, Kelly Sue will be joining us at the meetup! Be sure to be there:
Date: Friday, August 29, 2014
Location: Hanover F, Hyatt Regency
Time: 8:30 PM
The Avengers Ball
This was one of my favorite parts of last year and I was so excited to learn it was happening again! For last year’s party my friends and I dressed up as the various Avengers ladies from Matt Fraction’s Hawkeye comic, complete with playing cards on our heads. There were so many Barton’s that wanted pictures with us that I think we spent more time taking photos than actually partying. But don’t worry, we still found plenty of time to dance up on stage.
Hobbit Drinking Songs
I had no intentions of attending this panel, but last year was my parents’ first Dragon Con and my dad was overly excited by a panel that told you to BYOB. So without even realizing it was happening, I ended up in a room, drinking beer with my parents, and listening to the Brobdingnagian Bards sing Hobbit drinking songs. It was magical (which may be because I was drunk) and it’s one panel I’m going to find time to attend again this year.
Feel free to join me! Just, please, bring your own beer. Because my parents and I aren’t very good with sharing.
YA Author Panels
A few years back I pretty much stopped attending any of the big panels for Firefly, Battlestar Galactica, etc. The actors are all fantastic and they are great for newcomers, but once you’ve seen one panel, you’ve sort of seen them all. Instead I spend a good chunk of my time at Dragon Con in the Young Adult literature room where I can listen to some of my favorite authors speak on a variety of topics. I’ve gotten some excellent writing advice, made some new friends, and received so many reading recs I could barely keep track. Some of the authors I’m particularly looking forward to seeing are Diana Peterfreund, Stephanie Perkins, Michelle Hodkins, Jonathan Mayberry, Leigh Bardugo, Beth Revis, and Mari Mancusi.
It is a bit dangerous, spending so much time there, as it means I come home with a bag overflowing with new books.
One of my favorite parts of Dragon Con is checking out all of the amazing cosplayers and the various outfits they cycle thorough over the weekend. And while I’m not anywhere near the level a lot of people are, I really enjoy getting dressed up as well. This year I’m reusing two previous outfits and debuting one brand new one. So, if you see me dressed as any of the following over the course of the weekend, be sure to stop and say hello! And check back after con for pictures of our various costumes.
Friday: Punk Rock Ravenclaw. Teija and I have been doing this cosplay for the last two years, so this will be our third. It’s super fun and I get to wear a lot of crazy eyeliner!
Saturday: Lady Gambit. This is the new costume for the year. Gambit has long been my very favorite of the X-Men, and I’m excited to finally have put together a costume.
Sunday: Black Widow. Last year’s new costume and one I’m excited to repeat. It’s not entirely screen accurate, as it is too hot in Atlanta for me to wear long pants, but it’s still fun to wear. Plus it means I get to carry (fake) guns.
What are your Dragon Con plans? Must-see panels? Must-do activities? Sound off in the comments!