Savage Enterprises Publishing
Mike Aragona - Freelance Writer / Editor

Convention Venture

Ottawa SF Society - Location: Ottawa - Date: February 23, 1997 — Special meeting of the Ottawa Science-Fiction Society focusing on comics ("Creating Comics -- Learn How!")

Well, I really thought I'd have a lot more to say about this roadtrip, but unfortunately I don't. So, I hope you'll pardon the short commentaries.

We headed out early enough (I told Francisco I'd be at his place by 8:30am and due to the lack of cars on the road, made it there by 8:00am. What the heck, I got coffee out of the deal :). Picked up Jeff by 9:00am and took off).

The drive was incredibly boring! I never would have believed it that the drive to Ottawa is full of bland bland bland scenery! I have more fun driving to Toronto! There was nothing to see, and there weren't even any SIGNS indicating when and where the rest stops, gas stations, and food places where! Duh! Plus, we all thought it would take about 90 minutes. It took 3 hours!!! But, at least I had a tape of a CSAV Radio overnight show with some ROCKIN' GREAT TUNES which I pretty much blasted for 90 minutes :)

The panel itself was... comforting. I wasn't sure what to expect but it wasn't a classroom environment! I really didn't talk much during the first half of the presentation (I had learned way before PriMedia that whenever Mark Shainblum is on a panel with you, he'll go on and on and on! I think he runs on Energizers! (poke)). Due to inclement weather, Gabriel Morrissette didn't make it. Thus, on the panel of 6, 4 of us were from Montreal (Myself, Jeff, Francisco, and Mark) and 2 were from Ottawa (Janet Hetherington and Stephen Bourne)

I felt looser after our break (coffee kind of helps me there :)) but again when I wanted to start raving Francisco took the ball and walked with it (another poke) and before we knew it, it really was time to end the panel.

There *were* highlights, though. Selling 5 issues of Comicopia, getting a copy of Janet's ETERNAL ROMANCE (with the Variations on the Theme plug), having Pizza Calabrese in an Italian restaurant, being asked back for another panel at a museum April 26th (still to be confirmed), and blasting the music on the way down.

Unfortunately, the drive back to town was not a nice one. With the snow picking up steam, and the wind blowing it all over the place, plus the fact that the roads (besides being very boring and not having signs, did I mention this already? :)) had a visibility factor of ZILCH during the storm!!!!!

Still, all in all, it's just another bit of experience I can put in my cap. I never had a problem speaking in front of crowds, but it's nice to see how completely comfortable I've gotten with myself and my life that doing so doesn't make me feel like I'm "On The Spot" but rather that I'm being asked to share my opinion and ancedotes.

It's a nice feeling. And that's what makes conventions worth it.

(Convention Venture (c) Mike Aragona. All rights reserved. No reproduction or retransmission of this article is granted without written permission of Mike Aragona)

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