Boskone, Briefly

Dan Dos Santos painting me. Photo by Irene Gallo

 I was planning to do a long recap of Boskone this week, but in a general sense my plans for the week have been upturned due to my father-in-law’s death. Nevertheless I wanted to make sure I made it clear that I had a really excellent time as the convention’s guest of honor. This is due to three things: One, the expert care of the Boskone convention committee and staff, who made sure I wanted for nothing and who also sprang into sympathetic action when my plans changed due to Mike’s passing; Two, the Boskone attendees, who seemed genuinely excited to have me as a guest; Three, the programming schedule, which, while hectic, also did some very neat things for me and the other Guests of Honor.

Chief among them was the combination interview/painting session, in which artist guest of honor Dan Dos Santos did a quick oil painting of me while audience members asked questions. It was a really interesting and fun experience,not to mention slightly absurd in a good way. A great deal of this very cool experience was down to Dan himself — he’s a great guy and a lot of fun to do something like this with. Basically, if you ever get a chance to be painted by Dan Dos Santos, take it.

My Sunday was thrown awry because of the death in the family, and I had to duck out early and missed doing my autographing session. I don’t expect anyone holds that against me, but I still feel bad to have missed people and not to have signed their books. So: Sorry, folks. It’s possible I’ll be in the Boston area in the summer for a book tour; if I am I’ll be happy to sign then. I did still manage to do a panel and my reading, the latter of which was actually very useful to me. I was knocked for a loop about Mike’s death, so being able to dive into performing some of my writing was a nice way to get out of my own head for a bit. So if you were at my Boskone reading, thanks. You helped my brain, you did.

In all, Boskone was fabulous. Thanks for having me, Boston. I’ll be back.

18 Comments on “Boskone, Briefly”

  1. John, I was at Boskone and especially at the interview/painting above. I especially liked your story about groupies and your wife :::grin::: I was slightly bummed that you left early (not knowing the circumstances). The other story you told, about Android’s Sheep, your wife and father in law, funny then, now brings a tear to my eye.
    My condolences for your family. Mike sounded like a good man and he’ll be missed (and remembered) by all of you.

  2. I’m still looking forward to the panel where we interview Dan dos Santos while you write a short story about him. Thank you for being a wonderful GOH. And sorry it ended on such a sad note.

  3. My sympathies to your wife, you and all the family. Your FIL sounds like a really great guy, who touched a lot of people in positive ways.

  4. Please accept my sympathies for your family. I lost both my parents in the last few years and know it is a pain that lasts for a long time, particularly if they are as wonderful as your father in law sounds.

    As far as missing the signing – have you seen the BigBangTheory episode where Sheldon tracks down Will Wheaton for failing to show up for a signing session?

  5. crotchetyoldfan – The Crotchety Old Fan is Steve Davidson, also know as Rimworlder on many SF forums. Steve maintains the Rim Worlds Concordance project which is devoted to the works of A. Bertram Chandler and his most enduring character - Commodore John Grimes of the Rim Worlds Naval Reserve. Grimes is science fiction’s original ‘Horatio Hornblower of Space’. More information about Chandler, Grimes and the Rim Worlds can be found at www.rimworlds.com. Steve also maintains a visual index of volume 1, number 1 pulp science fiction magazines on the same website and is a devoted collector of the same. ‘I’m an ‘old’ SF fan, which you can take whichever way you like, as I love the old masters (Heinlein, Clarke, Asimov, E.F. Russell, Piper, Cordwainer Smith) and I’m well beyond the age you’re not supposed to trust anymore’. This blog is devoted to an investigation of the growing divide between ‘old’ - or ‘classic’ science fiction and the moderan literary genre that is currently sold under the same name. Steve has also begun writing reviews for www.SFReader.com, expects to be doing the same for www.SFSignal.com, and is contributing various non-fiction pieces to various other websites, all of them concerned with science fiction of one stripe or another. Early in 2008 he became completely disappointed with the SciFi Channel and created The Classic Science Fiction Channel website that gathers links to public domain radio, television, film and literary properties. Steve had a successful non-fiction writing career - writing articles and books dealing primarily with the paintball industry (Four books and several hundred articles including editorializing, product reviews, sports reporting, educational and more) - which he has since given up in favor of blogging and fiction. (Leaving the paintball industry after 25 years.) One final book on this subjected is scheduled to be released in early 2009 (A Parent's Guide To Paintball). Current work on fiction includes several completed novellettes/novellas curently in submission hell and various chapters of three novels. Freely distributed current work - including several chapters of a science fiction/paintball novel and a pulp/comic book/fairy tale mashup can be found on his website.
    crotchetyoldfan

    My condolences to you and your family.

  6. John, it was awesome having you as our Guest of Honor! I’m looking forward to seeing you again this summer (whether in Boston or at Chicon 7 or both!) My condolences to your family.

  7. May you and your wife be comforted among those who mourn for your father-in-law.

    I was also at Boskone, and want to thank you for being a wonderful GoH — my wife and I had a fantastic con, and you were one of the reasons why.

  8. John, I may be alone in saying this–but I truly hope that I’m not–there is NO REASON AT ALL for you to try to update us about anything that happened at a convention this weekend, nor anything else going on in familia Scalzi beyond what you have told us. For goodness sake man, at least from a fellow recent griever, take the time to spend with your family. When my brother-in-law/second father/oldest brother/best friend died a part of my life was ripped out. Gone were the days of lazing in the pool and drinking beer, and more things than I even care to think about. Fuck telling us about some stupid convention. Go spend time with your wife and daughter and let the rest of us go for now.

  9. Trust me, digitalatheist, I’m doing these updates in the moments when I’m not doing other things. And to be clear, popping up here is a little bit of stress reliever for me; I get mentally backed up if I don’t write something on a daily basis. But (genuinely) thank you for being concerned.

  10. John. I understand. I just didn’t want you to feel obligated to us, your adoring public. It is jsut that I wanted you to know that there is at least one person who–and I’m bet tons of others–who doesn’t expect you to keep us informed of every thing you have/are/will be doing in the next few too busy days. Today has been an emotional day for me in both directions… concerning the recent death of my mother. I also understand about stress relief. I know it may sound bad, but my stress relief was most of a 1/5th of Evan Williams Single barrel bourbon. My mother wouldn’t have approved, but after the last couple of years of dealing with her Alzheimer’s on a daily basis, it was more of a relieif than most people can believe to be able to actually forget for a while and wake up the next morning smiling because the first thing I recalled was a happy memory. Love and peach to you and thoe two lovely ladies of yours.

  11. gah.. peace… damn teary eyes. I grieve with ya’ll. As for Boskone, I do hope that you managed to avoid the Eddorians. Heck forbid they actually took over.

  12. No disrespect to the artist, but from this angle, his portrait looks more like Wil Wheaton than you. Will we see the final product in a better shot?

  13. I checked out some of Dan Dos Santos’s work on his web site. I really like his stuff. It would be great to see the finished portrait at some point.

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