Another interesting weekend…

So last week, we talked about the onrushing death of Traditional Publishing. That generated some interesting responses, both on and off line. Mushroom cloud peeking over the horizon.

Went to Emerald City ComicCon yesterday/Saturday (it’s nice to be able to walk to something like that and then home, even if I ended up doing 22k steps yesterday).

Last summer, I was at WorldCon in Spokane, WA. The thing that struck me there was the age of the attendees. Me, the dorky, forty-something white guy was in the lower half of the general age group, from what I could see. There were a tremendous amount of folks in their fifties and up, but a much smaller contingent in their teens and twenties. Some, but not enough.

We talked about how that old thing called “Fandom” was “aging out” as people got older and younger people were not drawn in to replace them. My theory was that literary Science Fiction and Fantasy, which is what WorldCon thinks of itself as, is giving way. Yesterday, I had the proof.

All those kids who were not doing WorldCon were at ECCC. All of them. And better (SJW-warning), it was not limited to old white guys. I saw just about every ethnic variety I could think of. Fabulous Publisher Babe(tm) and I disagree, but I think (at least Saturday) that female attendees outnumbered male. (Would be interesting to see if they publish that stat, but I’m too lazy to look it up to be sure.)

The best part, at least for me, were all the young’uns. I saw a Mom and Dad with kids in tow. One boy, maybe eight, dressed as Old Jedi Luke from SW7. And his two little sisters (maybe six and five) were both done up as Rey. Absolutely freaking awesome.

I don’t know how many little Wonder Women I saw, but the four-year-old blond girl Wonder Woman riding on Daddy’s shoulders and telling him which tables to stop at so she look was priceless.

That is fandom, today.

Those are the kids that will support me in my old age, assuming I can produce stories they want to buy. Sure, right now they are elbows deep in comic books and Extended Universe tie-ins from Marvel/DC and Star Wars stuff, but one of these days they will want more. And they’ll grow up into feisty little Social Justice Warriors of their own, demanding stories where the hero isn’t a lantern-jawed, heterosexually-rigid white guy.

Warms my heart.

Last year, at WorldCon, the tiff in the sandbox was the Sad Puppies. I don’t frequently do politics on my blog or my social networking, so look away now if you are of the faint of heart.

No, really. Look away now.

Okay, I warned you…

IMHO: The whole reason behind the Sad and Rabid Puppies was the firmly-held belief in some (small) minds that women and minorities do not belong in Science Fiction. (They can have Fantasy, as the story goes, but hard SF is a man’s field. A white man’s field.)

Fuck you.

Let me repeat that: FUCK YOU.

(Emerald City) ComicCon embraces minorities of all flavors. They want more women. There are entire tracks and events dedicated to LGTBBQ in all it’s glory. The place had easily five times as many people moving around as Spokane Worldcon did. Part of that is Urban Seattle vs. small-town Spokane. Part of that is the fact that much of Washington State was on fire and the air was unhealthy in Spokane last summer (chewy, in all the bad ways, downwind of massive wildfires. Blood red full moon was kinda cool, though.)

But all those people the Puppies don’t want in “literary SF” were here at ECCC. And having a ball. I bought a bumper sticker from a lovely, incredibly-gay man, boogieing to the disco music in his stall. He was having fun, and making money because he is the future of fandom. (By the way, his website is, if you want to buy some books from him and support a worthy cause. It might not be to your tastes, but I want to support them, so I have a book with an ETD of this Friday. They are doing good things by pushing all the walls back.)

And all those little girls dressed up as Rey and Wonder Woman? They are going to grow up to be badass readers with money in ten or twenty or thirty years. They will want to read about people who look like them, sound like them, act like them.

The age of the helpless little Princess in SF/Fantasy literature will be over soon. The Sad/Rabid Puppies may not have realized it, cocooned in their little he-man, girl-hating clubs, but they have ALREADY lost. And lost big.

They have lost the hearts and minds of an entire generation who will happily snap their fingers at the crazy old white men turning into that racist uncle at Thanksgiving.

Good riddance to rubbish.

Now, I just gotta get a really big bakery of stuff written so that when those kids start demanding books over graphic novels and videos, I will have something they will enjoy. I always try to write that way. Not because I’m SJW. I’m not even entirely sure what SJW means, but I am old hippie and I ain’t got time for that stupid shit. I want to sell books and entertain people. And make enough money so I can quit the day job and write more stories that entertain more people.

So, all in all, a totally awesome kind of weekend. I highly recommend you make it to a ComicCon, if you want to see what you should be planning for over the next thirty years.

That little girl dressed up as Rey is your future.


shade and sweet water,


West of the Mountains, WA.

One thought on “Another interesting weekend…

  1. Barry Melius

    Blaze,well said. I read a lot of scifi and find few ‘hard scifi’ books worth reading the last few years. For me personally it is fast becoming a irrelevant field that seems to be dying(quickly). Refreshing,entertaining,moving are not words that come to mind when thinking of recent releases in the genre. Past classics in the field only come close to the best of current general scifi if you add in the nostalgia factor. The simple truth is that the best scifi written tends to be recent and not ‘hard’. We are in the golden age of scifi right now and it ain’t them. Sorry guys,but thats the view from my ballpark. Good to see the potential future demographics for your ‘popcorn’ stand growing.

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