Monday, July 18, 2005

Sheep and speculative fiction

We did it. Successfully attended two weirdly different, but equally engaging annual events in the one weekend. And, as a complete bonus, I did a perfect reverse park.

We bought - correction, I bought: one bag of emu feathers, one Finn/Merino cross fleece, one coloured Corriedale fleece and a tiny amount of beautifully dyed suri alpaca and merino 4 ply yarn, two t-shirts, two Robin Hobb books, two Australian speculative fiction magazines, and the Best of Australian Science Fiction annual. Obviously, I hope, the latter part of the shopping list was bought at Continuum3, not the Melbourne Sheep and Wool Show!

In a weird cross-over event, I saw a woman I recognised from the Melbourne Knit It at Continuum3. She sat in front of me during Robin Hobb's Guest of Honour speech and drew out her knitting. Later, however, I discovered behind the author's signing table, pen in hand, ready to sign - her fantasy novels! What a wonderful collision of worlds. So you can add Trudi Canavan to my shopping list, too. I bought the first book in her trilogy.

For me the quote of Continuum3 was Robin Hobb's saying that 'you will never have more time than you have right now' - a warning to everyone who thinks they will write (or knit or spin) when they retire, stop studying, have a child-free house etc.

Did I also say Neil Gaiman was there? Well, he was - and you should have seen the queue for his signature.

On the whole I thought the panel sessions could have been chaired a little more rigorously, so that both the audience, and in some cases, the panelists were kept on topic. A small criticism of a huge event.

My children enjoyed themselves enormously and Alasdair is psyching himself up for the Discworld Convention in 2007. An added bonus to the weekend, for me, was attending it with them - good company and invaluable parking assistants.

Stay posted for more details about Continuum3 and musings about writing fantasy...

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