October 14–16, 2011
I’ve become so accustomed to sharing con space with anime fans, cosplayers, video gamers, LARPers, and every other sub-genre that’s come along in the last twenty years that I’ve almost forgotten how refreshing it can be to attend a convention that is all about straight up science fiction. That is very much Capclave’s niche, and they do it very well.
Programming was pretty light (just over 60 events) but of the highest quality and always well attended. I was delighted at the amount of coverage the small press received on the program and particularly enjoyed the panel I did with Neil Clarke, Ed Schubert, and Anne Sheldon on the future of small press magazines.
Without a doubt, the highlight of the convention (and SRO) was a surprise visit from Terry Pratchett who stopped by on the tail end of his North American publicity tour for Snuff. He spoke for an hour before having to rush off to catch a flight home. Despite suffering from Alzheimer’s and having just finished a fast-paced touring schedule, he’s still one of the wittiest speakers out there. Getting to see him again was priceless.
Nth Degree’s Saturday night Halloween party was fantastically successful as well. I may have to make that a new tradition.