2) Went to BayCon last weekend, for about 8 hours each day. Went to a couple panels chock-full of Hugo Award neepery (always fun), a panel or two on space, a fun panel on victorian speculative fiction, another good panel on "After the Robots Take Over", cruised the dealer room and art show, chatted with people. Standard stuff.
I still feel like I'm one of younger people at a sf con. And I'm pushing fifty! I didn't see many younger attendees there. Part of it could be due to both Fanime and Clockwork Century being the same weekend in the same region. But I also wonder if SFF fandom is really aging, or if it's just my perception.
I took my daughter (14 years old) with me. She had fun in the craft room and at the "Geek Girls" panel, but said there wasn't much there to appeal to her. There weren't too many other kids her age around. The Teen Room was a few computers set up for gaming (and was usually virtually empty). So she was ready to go after a few hours both days - I talked her into staying a little longer and she would read a book while I went to my sessions.
On the drive back home on Sunday we talked about what sort of panels and guests and activities might happen at a "YA Con". It's not substantially different from the current con, just with items that would appeal more people in the 11-21 age range. With a smaller admission fee (perhaps $30 for 1 or 2 days). Also with a "Parent In Tow" admission fee, and you set up a coffee/snack bar with wifi next to the book dealers all for parents. Or have some panels that are parent-oriented.
It's an intriguing concept, but I don't have the resources or SF group to make it happen. I do plan to take her to some of the local cons that draw more youth attendees (Sac Anime, Sac Comic Con) and see what the difference is. There are a ton of SFF fans out there, of all ages and cultures and groups. I think they could all enjoy conventions and bring more people into the con culture and fandom.
3) Writing proceeds veeeeeery slow. But it proceeds. I'm in the "muddle in the middle" that writers talk about with novels. Yet I'm writing a short story! That's what happens when you only make 1-3 hours/week to write. It takes forever and seems to drag on.
4) Have started working through Hugo nominees and have made my voting decision in about 5-6 categories (art, dramatic presentation, a couple others). I'm hoping to get into the story categories this weekend as I can make time.
I'm being more liberal about the use of No Award than in my past voting. When looking into past nomination results, I realized that voters use No Award all the time. For any given winning work or person, between 5% and 20% (!) of voters ranked No Award above the winner. So I'm going to use it now and in the future to demark "I don't think this work is good enough, in my opinion, to get a Hugo." But I haven't taken a straight anti-puppy position on anything, even if I do disagree with their conspiracy-based worldview and organized-bloc-voting methodology (and I *really* disagree with the RP on both counts).
5) Finished off the Cowboy Bebop episodes a while back. *Really* enjoyed them. Wish there were more. Started on Neon Genesis Evangelion (which, in one poll, was the only anime to rank above Cowboy Bebop). NGE is darker, more dramatic, more histrionic at times, but after five episodes I'm in for the run and intrigued to see where it's going.