I didn't see half as much of Nine Worlds as I would have liked.
I think the only way I could have would have time travel, or perhaps the ability to create little homunculi of myself. Nine Worlds had a lot of programming. And the more the weekend wore on, the more I realized that even the bits of it that at a first glance hadn't looked even remotely interesting probably were. I wish I'd hung around the Steampunk track a little more. Jobeda spent much of Saturday telling me how good the Geek Feminism stuff was, and I caught the end of a panel on Joss Whedon and sure enough, it was tremendous; I've been to entire Cons that contained less enthusiasm and intelligent debate than that one small, overheated room. I completely missed the Science track, and pretty much all of that looked interesting. I did a little better with the All the Books track, since I was in it, but I still felt like I'd barely scratched the surface. We never even got a look in at the Board Gaming, despite that being one of the things we'd specifically planned to do. And what I've listed there is only scratching the surface of what was on offer at Nine Worlds.
|Francis, Benedict, Me, Den, Emma.|
In truth, I perhaps got a bit carried away with my preparation. I went in with twenty-some questions (many of which had sub-questions!), a separate page of questions for the audience and notes on my panelists, which I'd prepped during a frantic ten minutes spent at the Forbidden Planet stall. Then I nearly lost all my notes. Then I found out at the last minute that Benedict Jacka was ill, wasn't coming and had been replaced by someone I'd never heard of. Then Benedict turned up, and was befuddled to discover that he wasn't expected.
|A scale model of the Nine Worlds hotel, possibly.|
Which, I guess, is also my conclusion when it comes to Nine Worlds: it did what only the very best of Cons can do and created a hugely inclusive space where everyone seemed comfortable regardless of race, creed or My Little Pony costume. It wasn't perfect***, but in its first year it was better than many established Cons, it raised the bar in a lot of ways that I hope get taken on board by the wider community, and I'm already looking forward to next year - when hopefully I'll actually get to do and see a bit more stuff.
* Seriously, this was the most polite panel ever.
** Wait, we didn't say that. Buy drinks for, not mug.
*** Main imperfection being the extraordinarily pricy bar. No pint of Coke on earth should cost six pounds.