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Sherlock Seattle con report

take my hand s-j
Let me tell you about part two of my trip to Seattle, the Sherlock Seattle con itself. (If you missed my earlier post about sight-seeing Seattle before the con, here it is.)

IT WAS AWESOME.

I was so impressed with how friendly this con was.  Everyone just seemed so excited to be there and talk to each other. It's always great to go to a con and be among My People, but Sherlock Seattle was exceptionally welcoming.  I could start examining the Sherlock Cards Against Humanity set in the Diogenes Club and moments later find myself starting a lively game with nine strangers.  I loved getting to have actual face to face meeting with people I've known and admired from online, including dameruth (thanks again for pushing me to attend!), bendingsignpost, and tartancravat. I also felt like I came away with a bunch of new friends.  I'm not going to try to name-check all the people I met, because that would take forever and I'd probably leave someone out by accident, but let me just say that if I talked to you at the con I thought that you were super cool and looked really good in that thing you were wearing.  I roomed with gmonkey42, who I met online just before the con but who turned out to be a fellow biology-type and a really neat person.  (The excellently-named Midgetnazgul also joined us one night.)

Also, the Sherlock Holmes multiverse fandom has its share of wank, but you wouldn't know it from this con.  Admittedly people are almost always less likely to get mean in person, but at most cons I've seen at least one panel where some panelist(s) denigrated some character/era of the show/type of fan/ship/other fandom/something in a way that made me feel uncomfortable.  I didn't see that happen here, even in discussion of sometimes-contentious subjects.  People had different opinions, but nobody I saw was an asshat about it.  While the publicity's focus and the choice of fan guests meant that those folks who can't stand BBC Sherlock were probably not in attendance, I still feel that the inclusiveness and camaraderie of the con was commendable. BBC!Sherlock fans, Elementarians, and old-school Holmesians were all present and getting along.  So that was cool.

It was odd for me to be in a con that wasn't in a hotel.  It was a minor nuisance to have to walk back and forth from the hotel and to have things end earlier than I'm used to for cons because the venue closed.  (On Saturday, when I was dressed as steampunk!femme!Holmes and feeling kinda conspicuous walking alone down the sidewalk in my corset, deerstalker, shortish skirt, and odd steampunk accessories, I found it helpful to consider that gifset with Charlize Theron saying  "shoulders down, neck long, then just think 'murder' and walk."  In character plus discouraging of street obnoxiousness!)  However, the theater we were in was otherwise a really nice venue.  It had the advantage of being located very close to numerous sources of reasonably priced food.  On Sunday a farmer's market set up right outside the con's door!  Now I sort of feel like every con should have one of these on at least one day so everyone can get their vitamins and eat something that is quick but still interesting, healthy, and locally produced.  Sherlock Seattle didn't pack the schedule as tightly as many cons, so I only rarely had to choose between getting a meal and seeing something I wanted.

The dealer's room had an unusually high percentage of stuff I wanted.  I was trying to exercise fiscal restraint, but I still came away with some swag.  I got a gorgeous t-shirt from Unicorn Empire, two books for Laurie King to sign, and nifty nautilus earrings.

I enjoyed every panel and con event I went to, but here is a list of some particular highlights from the official schedule:

-The Laurie & Les Show, featuring Laurie King (author of the Mary Russell pastiches) and Les Klinger (noted Sherlockian scholar, and, as noted on the Baker Street Babes podcast, owner of possibly the largest collection of actual published Holmesian porn).  I really enjoyed the guests of honor.  They were knowledgeable, funny, and warm, not to mention lending an aura of respectability to the whole shebang.

-"Vicious and Vulgar":  really well-acted and fascinating theater about transformative works, living as a fan, flatmate challenges, and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle being hilariously grumpy.

-Elements of Slash:  professorfangirl had such thoughtful things to say on all of her panels.  Madlori kept making hilarious (and often accidental) double entendres.  All of the authors were articulate and entertaining.  Let me love you!

-Sexuality and Sherlock:  This panel was a particularly good balance of fun with thinky thoughts.  Lots of great points were raised, and I could probably articulate some of them if I hadn't waited a week to do this writeup.

-Cosplay contest:  how are you all so talented, cosplayers?  Damn.

-MST1895:  In which the hilariously awful Asylum Sherlock Holmes (aka The One With Ianto as Watson, aka The One With Dinosaurs) was roundly mocked.  I had seen this before with shwatchalongs, but it was really fun to hear the riffing and observe so many people being introduced to the WTF-ery of this movie.

-Holmes and Watson reading:  a stage reading of scenes from the play Holmes and Watson by guest of honor Lee Eric Shackleford.  Now I really want to see this play performed all the way.  It delved into the emotional issues surrounding Holmes's return in "The Empty House."  Very cool.

-Closing Ceremonies/video show:  great fun to watch a lot of fanvids (many familiar, a few I'd never seen before) with so many other emotionally invested people.

After the end of the con, I happily managed to attach myself to a group of people looking for dinner.  We wandered around in a slightly confused herd before eventually locating a fish and chips place that also had veggie sausage sandwiches for me and got takeout.  We ate in a park, then went back to the hotel where I (and several others) were staying for drinks, and it was just so, so lovely.  There was a big circle of hugs to end the evening, the perfect wrap-up to the lovefest that was this con.  I feel recharged in my adoration of Sherlock (BBC, canon, Elementary, the whole nine yards) and the fandom.


If you have any fondness at all for Sherlock Holmes and John Watson and you can possibly make it to Seattle next fall, I highly recommend this con.

Comments

( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
kaffyr
Oct. 14th, 2013 04:02 am (UTC)
Even though I'm not a fulltime Holmesian of any type (with the possible exception of Jeremy Brett and the Granada!Verse), it makes my heart glad to know that fandom in all its good aspects was out there in Seattle, and that you had a ball. Fantastic! And thanks for writing about it!
tardis_stowaway
Oct. 14th, 2013 07:30 am (UTC)
Jeremy Brett is wonderful. When I read the canon stories, his is the face that most often appears in my mind's eye for Holmes.

And thanks for reading!
chasingriver
Oct. 14th, 2013 05:45 am (UTC)
Glad you had fun at the con. Great writeup! I think my favourite parts were Vicious & Vulgar and the Small Ships panel, but I enjoyed all of it. I saw your comment on tumblr. I'm chasingriversong over there.
tardis_stowaway
Oct. 14th, 2013 08:08 am (UTC)
Hi there, welcome! I'm glad you had fun at the con too. :) Vicious & Vulgar was really something special. I feel so lucky that we got to see it. I heard all sorts of good things about the Small Ships panel.
erynn999
Oct. 14th, 2013 05:45 am (UTC)
Seattle loved you, too, miss Steampunk Holmes!
tardis_stowaway
Oct. 14th, 2013 08:57 am (UTC)
It was a real treat to meet and converse with you!

Best of luck with your preparations for your Italy move. :)
erynn999
Oct. 14th, 2013 07:20 pm (UTC)
Thank you! I am so crazy busy, and Steamcon is coming up very very soon.
i_id
Oct. 14th, 2013 07:04 am (UTC)
TheHats here, aka the Classic Holmes in deerstalker and Inverness Cape who mysteriously turned into Cecil on the last day of con. Just so you know who's friending you.
tardis_stowaway
Oct. 14th, 2013 09:17 am (UTC)
Hello, welcome! I can't remember if I told you at the con, but your Classic Holmes outfit was really excellent. Cecil too! I am really into Night Vale lately, so it was fun to see the Cecils invading Sherlock Seattle.
i_id
Oct. 14th, 2013 09:59 am (UTC)
Right? The tiny one (I can't remember her name) just made my day the first time I saw her.
erynn999
Oct. 14th, 2013 07:21 pm (UTC)
Last year the overall winner of the cosplay contest was Misplaced Sam Winchester, so Cecils really aren't so surprising...
isiscaughey
Oct. 14th, 2013 05:56 pm (UTC)
It sounds like a lot of fun! And I've never been to Seattle. I think I didn't even consider it because of worries about wank, so it's good to hear that it wasn't an issue.
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )

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