Con Review: Capclave 2004

by Michael D, Pederson


Capclave 2004
October 15-17, 2004
Vienna, Virginia

I suppose that “intimate” would be the best word to sum up this year’s Capclave. Attendance was down this year, with roughly 250 people in attendance (counting guests and dealers). The lower numbers didn’t hurt the atmosphere in any way though.

Space constraints in a new hotel kept the programming down to a single track but this gave the guests—Guests of Honor Nick Pollotta (Author), Butch Honeck (Artist) and Dennis McCunney (Fan) included—more time to mix and mingle with the attendees. The very relaxed and open-to-all Kaffeeklatches were well attended and I spent most of Saturday afternoon in a chat circle by the pool while other guests and attendees came and went, joining in the conversation. It was one of those great con moments that couldn’t have been planned by anyone.

For a literary con the programming was a bit short on literary programming but the one panel I was on, “New Writers,” drew a good crowd and could have easily gone into a second hour. I just would have liked there to have been at least one panel on Sunday devoted to something literary instead of the three self-obsessed (and redundant) panels on “How to Run the Perfect Con,” “If I Ran the Zoo [Con],” and the “Gripe Session.”

My gripes are minor though. I had a fun weekend with a lot of people that I only get to see a couple of times a year. Next year is bound to be as much fun too; Howard Waldrop is the scheduled Guest of Honor.


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