ckd: small blue foam shark (Default)
[personal profile] ckd
(Worldcon report coming at some point.)

It looks like airfare is pretty cheap at the moment, though transcontinental travel is still going to be a giant time suck. There aren't any BOS-SJC nonstops (AA killed their old "nerd bird" a few years ago, and JetBlue chopped theirs during the fuel price jump last year), so it's a hub connection somewhere (IAH, probably, since CO has the cheap fare right now) and end-to-end gate-to-gate times run in the 8-9 hour range.

+ Another con to fill in the gap between Worldcon and Arisia
+ BOS-SJC fare reasonably cheap right now
+ Can hook a SEA stop in there to see family; a BOS-SJC-SEA-BOS triangle trip only adds about $100-150 to the fare if I stay through Sunday
+ "Use it or lose it" vacation policy; WFC + the extra day at each end would get me closer, and doing the Seattle trip would get me under the threshold for sure even if I don't take any other time off
- Not sure how many folks I know will be there
- Two extra hotel nights pretty much required due to flight times (either in SJC or near SEA)
- Two long travel days


Date: 2009-08-14 04:18 (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I've been to WFC twice when it was in Minneapolis, and enjoyed it. Part of that was because I know a number of folks in the Minneapolis SF crowd, but in general, WFC seems to have good programming. It's closer to being a professional conference/workshop than a regular con; a significant fraction of attendees are professionally involved in the field.

Date: 2009-08-14 04:34 (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Check the JetBlue fare sale. MPR mentioned it today: an AYCE month-long pass for $600.


Date: 2009-08-14 04:46 (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I've always been deeply ambivalent about World Fantasy: The programming is almost always excellent (where "excellent"="stuff I like"); on the other hand, WFC makes Readercon look whimsical and egalitarian by comparison. Readercon is only accidentally elitist as a by-product of its focus and emphasis; WFC is elitist by design.

Date: 2009-08-14 13:18 (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
In other ways, WFC is among the least elitist conventions I've been to. Everybody hangs out in the Con Suite (which is much better than the Green Room), parties that are often invitational elsewhere are open there, etc.

Date: 2009-08-14 14:12 (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
The goober quotient is relatively low at WFC, so there's less need to exclude them. Any jerks present are likely to be professional jerks.

Date: 2009-08-14 14:25 (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Not surprising; once you've set things up to make certain that only (or at any rate mostly) the right people† can get in, everybody who's there is part of the "in" crowd.

Which is to say, sf/fantasy professionals and their associates. I've heard repeated rumors over the years -- admittedly without substantiation -- that the purpose of the WFC membership cap is as much to keep the number of just-fans attending as low as possible as it is to keep the convention at a manageable size, and that for A-list people the cap is not necessarily a problem.

Date: 2009-08-14 17:31 (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
WFC has usually not hit the cap, so it didn't have much effect.

The membership rate is kept high so that only people who are seriously interested in attending do so.

There are constraints that affect pros that other conventions don't have; for instance, a limit of one program item (except for GoHs).

I wouldn't be surprised if certain people can join even after the cap is reached; however, I believe the number of such people is fairly low (and the number who actually do is even lower). I don't think any convention would turn away Stephen King.

Date: 2009-08-15 12:12 (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
The problem I had at the WFC I attended was that for 90% of the people I tried to talk to, the minute I said that I wasn't a writer, they lost interest in talking to me. The people who would talk to me were great, but it was still a bit of a downer.

Date: 2009-08-14 11:42 (UTC)
alicebentley: (bluestars)
From: [personal profile] alicebentley
WFC is one of the events that I go to when I can, but between the membership price, the usual cost of the hotel and the distance it's almost always as expensive as WorldCon without the reliable 1000 people I know to hang out with.

Programming is quite engaging even if you're not a writer, but once I wasn't a bookstore owner anymore I found myself struggling to connect with new people - I didn't have an identity (writer, artist, publisher, editor, agent, bookseller, even iPhone programmer) that new acquaintances could hang their memories on. Not unlike meeting folks in the working word when you are a stay at home Mom.

I have had a really wonderful time in the years where I knew enough people already, and a mildly interesting but overall unfulfilling time in the years when I didn't.

Date: 2009-08-14 12:10 (UTC)
From: [personal profile] ron_newman
Could you do Boston-SFO instead and take the train down to San José? It looks to me like the hotel is a reasonable walk from the Caltrain station.
Edited Date: 2009-08-14 12:18 (UTC)

Date: 2009-08-14 14:48 (UTC)
From: [personal profile] ron_newman
I think you take BART one stop from the airport to the Millbrae Caltrain station, then Caltrain south to San Jose.

Date: 2009-08-14 23:28 (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
How about hitting Albacon in October?


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blue shark of friendliness

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