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NYCC 2015

My cousin, a recent geek convert, has started this beautiful tradition in which we go to one day of NY Comic Con and spend hours marveling at the amazing cosplay, shouldering our way through crowds, waiting in line for panels, and eventually attending said panels. Last year, I was most excited about “Geek Geek Revolution,” in which members of the audience tried to stump the panel of authors with geek trivia. The panel (including Peter Brett, Maureen Johnson, M.D. Payne, Amber Benson, Lou Anders, and John Scalzi, moderated by Patrick Rothfuss), was very funny. And while knowledgeable, they were actually quite stumpable, making the experience all the more enjoyable (for me, if perhaps not for them).

I also took an AMAZING Where’s Waldo photo that will forever be my best photographic work.

where's waldo nycc

This year, my main focus was the Con Man panel: Firefly stars Alan Tudyk and Nathan Fillion (along with PJ Haarsma, Felicia Day, Seth Green, Nolan North, and Alison Haislip) talking about their entirely fan-funded web series, Con Man.

Before Con Man was “Making the Impossible Possible — Authors of Science Fiction & Fantasy” with Evan Currie, J.D. Horn, Marko Kloos, Rysa Walker, Chuck Wendig, and Jeff Wheeler, moderated by Courtney Miller. I’ll admit that I was unfamiliar with many of these authors because they write primarily adult books and I am nowhere near as knowledgeable about the adult lit world as I am about the children’s. But I like all literature and the panel sounded fascinating, so I attended. It did not disappoint. I was particularly interested (of course) when Miller, the editorial director of Amazon Publishing imprints 47North, Skyscape, and Jet City Comics, asked the panelists their thoughts about YA and whether they believed that editors should get rid of YA as a descriptor altogether.

At this point, I began climbing onto my frustrated kid-lit high horse, getting ready to hear people refer to YA as a genre and listen to arguments about how teens don’t read YA.

But I was totally wrong.

One of the authors (Wendig, I believe) began the discussion by reminding everyone that YA is an age designation, not a genre. The several panelists who were crossover authors went on to say that audience makes little difference in the writing process. Their YA books are intended for teens — although many adults do read YA, and the authors are happy to have readers of any age appreciating their work.

A Silent Bob cosplayer then asked the best question I’ve heard put to a group of authors: “So many things we have today were conceived in science fiction. What, if anything, from your own works would you most want to be real?” Faster-than-light travel was the biggest winner.

This year’s “Geek Geek Revolution” was nowhere near the authorial destruction of last year, but still highly enjoyable. John Flanagan, Christopher Golden, Max Brallier, M.L. Brennan, and Judd Winick (moderated by Heath Corson) refused to be stumped, amicably destroying each other and most of the audience questions. Midway through the game, I got all judgy when a giant nerd across the aisle from me threw his arms up in frustration, almost howling, that the authors were unable to answer a question about Doctor Who. “Chill OUT,” I thought, “It’s just trivia. It can’t be that important.”

Moments later, when M. L. Brennan was only able to name 5 of the 7 Weasley children, forgetting Fred and George (FRED AND GEORGE, GUYS — not Bill and Charlie, but FRED AND GEORGE), I threw my arms up in the air and nearly shouted “COME ON.”

You and I, Giant Nerd, we have much in common.

And finally there was the Con Man panel. The line for this particular event was so long and began so early that the people running the event lost their cool a little bit and just waved us all into the room ahead of time, seating us during the Teen Wolf panel.

I have absolutely no idea what Teen Wolf is.

But what I found so incredibly wonderful about the Con Man panel was getting to look at it in relation to Teen Wolf: the TW guys were like a boy band, pleasing their fans by answering questions and showing some dimples. The Con Man panelists, however, seemed to genuinely like being with each other and the fans. They were excited about their project, happy to be at NYCC, and dedicated to answering audience questions honestly and humorously. Really humorously. They cracked us — and themselves — up. (Start this video of the panel at 39 minutes to watch Seth Green and Felica Day riff about Khaleesi cosplay and Chihuahua-sized dragons.)

Also I saw a Cinderella/Belle cosplayer! Cinder-belle-a?

cinderbella nycc

And I got a Jayne hat!

sian jayne hat nycc

Cunning, don’t you think?

Siân Gaetano About Siân Gaetano

Siân Gaetano is assistant editor for The Horn Book, Inc. Follow her on Twitter @KidLitChick.



  1. Roger Sutton Roger Sutton says:

    Who ARE you?

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