It seems it came out a few months ago, but I just found out that Affinity Designer, Serif’s alternative to Adobe InDesign, is now in free beta status. I’m already a fan of Affinity Photo and Designer (alternatives to Photoshop and Illlustrator), so this is a nice find.

Book thirty-two of 2019: White Trash Zombie Apocalypse, by Diana Rowland ⭐️⭐️⭐️

This series continues to entertain, as the filming of a zombie film provides backdrop to expanding the political and scientific worlds of the zombie population. Conspiracies galore!

🖖 #StarTrekDiscovery S02E14 (Late, because I was at Norwescon.) So many explosions! I’m not exactly opposed to getting a little Star Wars in my Star Trek, but this may have been a bit much. Ending on the Enterprise was pretty, but odd. Overall: imperfect, but satisfactory.

Book thirty-one of 2019: The Big Time, by Fritz Leiber. ⭐️⭐️ 1958 Hugo Best Novel

For some reason, I couldn’t get invested in this one. I didn’t dislike it, and it being structured very much like a single-set play was interesting, but I had to work my way through it.

Norwescon 42 Wrap-Up

Home from Norwescon!

This was my first year as a member of the Exec team, and I hope it won’t be my last. As I’m in a position whose duties are heavily weighted pre-convention, I was much more able to simply enjoy the con than I have been in the past few years, when I was coordinating the photo department, taking photos, and monitoring social media. This year, I got to spend much more time wandering around, finding friends and acquaintances old and new, and just enjoying the convention without being constantly on the run from one duty to another. It was nice!

Amusingly, this didn’t translate into much panel attending — one of the major aspects of the con that I’ve personally had little time to explore — though I did make sure to attend Saturday’s Star Trek: Discovery panel, which I very much enjoyed. Should I hold the Secretary position again next year, I’ll try to get a few more panels onto my schedule.

I got to sit at a dinner table with our Special Guest of Honor Nancy Pearl at the GOH Banquet, and she was an absolutely wonderful person. We and the rest of the table chatted favorite books old and new, and after hearing some about my interests, she recommended Peter Hamilton’s Pandora’s Star to me, so I’ll definitely have to pick that up. One doesn’t simply shrug off a personal recommendation from the model for the Librarian action figure, after all!

The P. K. Dick Awards were a highlight as always. Though I continue my streak of failing to predict the winner, the final choice was a worthwhile selection, and I was lucky enough to be seated next to the winner, so I got to hear her excited gasp of surprise as her name was called out.

I talked to many people, made and laughed at lots of jokes (bad and good), talked books, TV, and film, had a few drinks, danced to the wee hours on Saturday night, ran around dressed up as the Unstoppable T-Rex, handed out many “ALL THE RIBBONS!” ribbons, and once again, had a grand old time over the weekend.

Thanks to all of you who helped to make this a good weekend, whether through personally interacting with me or through being part of the con community (staff and members alike) who make this such a good experience every year. I’m glad I got to see those of you I did, and look forward to seeing you all again in the future.

On to Norwescon 43!

🖖 #StarTrekDiscovery S02E13 So many questions; quite glad there’s still one more episode. Enjoying the Short Treks tie-ins (maybe even Calypso?). But…wow. The Enterprise bridge! That was an incredible modernization that still obviously respected the original. I was blown away.

Book thirty of 2019: Even White Trash Zombies Get the Blues, by Diana Rowland. ⭐️⭐️⭐️ 📚

Upping the stakes with conspiracies, some zombie virus science and military experiments, and a little undead romance. Definitely as enjoyable as the first in the series.