Tag Archive: katsucon

Well, a lot. First, I lost my account credentials for this account, and couldn’t log in. But a lot of really… really… let me sum up.

Okay, so I was elected President of Katsucon Entertainment, Inc. Then elected again. I got to travel and work at their tables, so I did a lot of Anime cons. I think I went to 8 in 2013 alone, including New York Comic con, where I hung out with Yaya Han of “Heroes of Cosplay.” It was our convention’s 20th anniversary, so there was a lot that needed done and a lot that needed changed. I hired some new staff.

I did more stuff with the DC Rollergirls, including being in the DC 4th of July Parade.

I got some part time contract gigs.

Then I got a new job which sent me to exotic places like Washington DC and Las Vegas. 😀

For HR people. D:

I got a large dog.

Of course, then there was Katsucon 20 itself, which was a big party.

But the biggest news, and the worst, really, was my wife of 25 years, Christine Larson, who encouraged my writing the entire time we were married, passed away from ARDS (Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome) in March. She had been very sick, and I was taking care of her a lot. She had sarcoidosis, which is where her lungs were being attacked by her immune system, and she had already lost a third of her lungs to it. She had to take immunosuppressants to slow the growth, which made her susceptible to pneumonia, which she got in October, and had until early February. Just as she was recovering from that, she got the H1N1 strain of influenza, and died.

At least she got to see her fruits of labor, the JCI, take root at Katsucon.

So after some fenagling and searching through lost emails, I got my credentials back for WordPress. How my next book is going in the next post.

SEE… amazing speling errors! MARVEL… at grammar is the poorly! FIND… thongs the spill Czech her din knot kvetch!

So… Katsucon came and went. Major hotel stress. Hotel acting like assholes. Many years from now, I will be able to tell this story in full without jeopardizing any contracts. It makes me sad how quickly some people will blame the Jews from BBYO, but trust me… they were NOT the problem. In fact, they helped us FIX the problem from both sides, and the hotel had to admit all their mistakes on Monday after the con. That was an uncomfortable meeting, let me tell you. If any good came from this, I got to meet some cool people at the BBYO and the hotel will be pretty decent with us in 2014.

ANYWAY… I was co-chair, then I was elected President of Katsucon Entertainment, Inc., which meant I couldn’t be a con chair anymore (conflict of interest), so then I ran their communications division, and while I still do, being President of the Board and head of Communications, PR, and Marketing is about half the work of being co-chair. My wife took over, and then retired due to her health. This means now I can focus on my book, which I did with all speed because I wanted to get the rage of the hotel issues out of my head. Today, Friday, February the 22nd, I released my first draft beta to my readers!

I hope to get these back by April, have a revised Beta 2 for professional editor, and I *hope* to have this book out May 24th!

Ha ha…

Okay, so I got a new job since my last post in May. It can happen! The job is *great*. I love the job. However, unlike my last job where I did a lot of busy work with huge stretches of time with nothing to do where I could do my Katsucon work and edit my book… I actually have to WORK at this work. I mean, go figure. They pay fairly well, so I feel obligated to actually produce something. Also, I do a fair bit of after-hours studying and some workload, like tonight I have some maintenance that will last until the wee hours of Saturday morning.

Sadly, this meant I couldn’t do the swath of e-mails that being a Katsucon co-chair provided. So I had to do that at home. Which meant even though my book was *mostly* done… I still had to edit for beta readers. Then I was elected Katsucon Corporate President. This meant I had to give up my co-chair duties (conflict of interest), although I am still in charge of their communications and marketing. So my job with Katsucon “down shifted” but is still going strong.

So, my book took a back seat. After Katsucon, I’ll have some corporate filings to take care of, financial auditing, and working with the new convention chair elected for Katsucon 20 in 2014. It is my hope that I will manage to have a beta copy out. I’d like to have all this done so I can release a book at Balticon this year, but it’s going to be tight. Luckily, my work hired on contractors to help with the work load, so I’ll have less after hours stuff with them as well.

So there you are…

I am spiritual and superstitious. It’s true. Maybe it’s dumb and I offend my “there is no afterlife” atheist friends, but a lot the “happy accidents” in my life have happened by following hunches. I have gotten a lot of long-time friends this way. Thus it is with my writing.

So, I was at Anime Mid Atlantic last weekend. I am their cosplay emcee, run by Tiki Tanuki, a great cosplay wrangler and master. I have to plug her work, she’ because she is really a great, confident boss and deserves praise for her work. Anyway, I was also keeping an eye on the Katsucon table, as now my friend and long-time Katsucon staffer Christian was running it for the first time. He did pretty good for the first time around, and took a lot of rolls with the punches as her figured some stuff out. Part of this was he got trapped in traffic on Friday, and we only had 4 volunteers (me, Sean, Scarlet, and Natalie) and a box of flyers to man it. During a break where I alone was at the table, someone came up to me. He looked like a gangly older teenager, maybe 17-19 years old. I am bad at age, so if he’s reading this, sorry if I got it wrong.

“Hey… are you Grig Larson?” He asked with mild enthusiasm. “Writer of the Punk Walrus Saga?”

Holy hell, I rarely hear that title brought up at anime cons. And usually by older people because I published that damn thing in 1993. Nearly 20 years ago. I have to remind myself, because I have a dark sense of sick humor that likes to shock myself, that it would be like graduating high school and meeting someone, “Hey, did you write that book in the 60s?”

“Why yes,” I said with a growing smile. “How did you hear about it?”

“Hear about it? It’s big in the furry community!”

I swear to God, if this was a sitcom, I would hear a record needle scratch in the background. You see, I am not… that cool with furries. A few of you may not know what a “furry” is, so in a nutshell, it is a subculture of people who dress like animals. Some more than others. A few might wear a cat tail and cat ears, and a few wear full body suits like they work for a children’s TV show.

I do not HATE furries, and not that I want them banned from anime cons or anywhere… they just ook me out. Like clowns. After spending some time with furry friends of mine, who were put off by my distaste of their culture and wanted to set me straight, I realized I got ooked out by furries for several reasons:

  1. The entire coulrophobic, “scary clown” thing; I don’t trust people I can’t see their expressions behind for reasons that are too spiritually mumbo-jumbo for me to get into on this writing blog. Lumbering, expressionless costumes with people behind them, especially fannish and damaged people, are really disconnecting and disconcerting to me. For those who don’t have this fear, imagine this: you live in a world where a few people walk around with a voiceover that speaks for them. And the voices that emanate from their still mouths don’t always match their expressions. Like a cute little girl, eating an ice cream cone like a normal child, but speaking (without moving her lips) with a deep male voice that says the bleeding won’t stop. That level of fucking creepy. I am more okay with furries who are not wearing large head gear than those who are. I am even MORE comfortable if they LOOK scary. Gwar costumes? Awesome. Girl with cat ears, a tail, and a bell around her neck? Cute. A giant fox with a Disney-like expression, twirling their tail and flirting? GET ME THE FUCK OUT OF HERE!!
  2. A smaller subset of furry fandom is about “yiffing,” which is the sound supposedly made when those in full body costumes have sex; like the sound a fat person wearing corduroy pants might make walking down the street. How much of furry fandom has a bestiality level I do not know. Working in anime, a lot of people assume we all want to fuck underage anime girls with an octopus, so I understand that outsider perceptions are often poorly stereotyped. Bestiality, which I place with necrophilia and pedophilia, are crimes to me because they force sex on the unwilling. But does dressing up as a rabbit and dog, and then fucking one another, constitute bestiality? I don’t know, Punkie, does it? I think if anyone wants a real answer to this, they should ask a furry until I sort this out.
  3. I have met a lot of messed up furries. I don’t know if there are more messed up furries than, say, messed up NASCAR enthusiasts, but coupled with #1 and #2, it seemed like more. I knew a girl once into “pony play” that I think is a danger to herself and others, but truthfully, the pony play was only a small part of what was wrong with that girl. She also smeared her excrement on the door handles of ex boyfriends (and those she wanted to think were her ex boyfriends) and was arrested for biting people in Harbor Place in downtown Baltimore (no lie; her defense was she thought they were a sugar cube).

Me and my furry friends reached a truce where I don’t speak about furry things with them. I have to be honest, I am not out to get them, and if there was ever a “fandom versus mundane” war, I’d be happy to have them on my side. I just have my own issues I have to work through.

Which apparently the Forces-That-Be just decided would have to be done sooner than later. Mildly amused at the Gods’ prank on me, ha ha, I followed up with my usual thanks. He wasn’t done, though.

“Have you written anything more than that one book?”

I had. I had a sequel that never got published because the old publishing company/distributor that put it out was now dead. My old book was available through Mystic Station Designs for a while, but they refocused their core business model back to gaming only, and my book had poor sales, so it got cut. I still have to get those books back.

“You should totally publish them again,” he said. “Let the furries know.”

I told some of my furry friends. They laughed. HARD. While not all of them knew of my book, the tellings of my story were met with a range of, “Of course!” and “You wrote a book in 1993? I was like, 2 years old then.” Thank goodness I don’t have this fear of aging, as I have friends that would see that phrase alone as, “You are a drain on society, and have done nothing with your life. This iceberg we have put you on grandma, will drift only a little while before you are eaten by a polar bear, where you might serve as some final use to those in need.”

But most agreed to the thing I feared most: “You need to republish them.” So, I think that’s my next project after “Space Bitch.” I will medicate on this, but if all goes according to plan, I think I will release them as multiple short stories, with a final compilation as a 20th anniversary edition.

My God have mercy upon my soul. Because they started it.

The story so far…

Yes, Katsucon is foremost on my mind but I am at 103k words for my second book which is about 5000 words since Jan 15th. Still 90% finished, working on crafting that grand ending. This book will likely have a sequel, as I was getting a little too… Tolkien-esque in my storyline. Definitely not finished by Balticon. 😦

Well, better do it right than rush it.

Somehow I managed not to offend the wrong people, and I have been invited back as a panelist and general resident wise-guy. I’ll let you know what panels and signings I shall have in a later post… probably in late April.

Meanwhile, “Space Bitch” is almost done. Right now, we’re at about 90%. I have to work on the ending a little, and then the first alpha edit will start. I don’t know if this will make it by Balticon, I have to talk with my publisher (who is out touring in Texas). I am still working on the title, and I will start working on getting some cover art after Katsucon. A sequel is already partially diagrammed out.

Everything is “after Katsucon” at this point because it’s less than 6 weeks away. That process is going smoothly. Last night Christine (my bride of almost 23 years and other co-chair) told me we’re ahead of schedule. I was at Magfest this weekend, working the table a little, Katsucon a lot, and finalizing deals and last minute updates with the Gaylord. A big crash meeting in a little over 2 weeks away! Yikes! But thankfully, I HAVE THE BEST STAFF ON THE DAMN PLANET and I am humbled and grateful to have therm work with me.

Two weeks of the delay is entirely my fault, I got engrossed with Katsucon and Otakon (where the Katsucon table was). But I submitted the last minor corrections last night, and after my final proof, it’s going up, baby. First Amazon.com, and then other publishers. Glad I held out on Borders Nook, whew!

Price will still be $7.99

My desktop is fixed and being set back the way I like it. The temp box I was using at home was so slow for a GUI. It took longer to fix the box up as I had some technical issues I won’t go into on this blog, but there was a lot of hardware swapping and testing. For a few days, it looked like I’d have to get a brand new system, but thankfully, I averted that costly need with m4h m4d t3ch ski11z.

But this delay had started to thin down my buffer. Also, an anthology I have been working with, A Rush of Wings, is having some manpower issues even though it’s due to be released when MY book is to be released. Basically, we are down a few pieces and my short story, “Stone Ice Raven,” needs a little work. I really want to get this book out too, because it will be my third published piece so far this year.

I wanted to be done with my massive editing for Trolley, and my publisher is already asking me fro a blurb and a bio. I got some preliminary confirmation I will be doing an autograph session (thanks, guys, for taking care of that without me asking), and having the release party with my publisher (hooray!).

In addition to “Fireside Meanderings” I will be taking up some of the Balticon Podcasts again shortly after a seasonal delay by Dancing Cat Studios. I have a decent microphone now, and will be able to do more from home.

On top of that, I am working Katsucon and dealing with post-con planning for pre-K18. It never stops when you’re this high up, and by fall of 2011, we’ll be already working on preliminary Katsucon 19 in 2013. To give you an idea, Katsucon already has guests lined up for K18, we just don’t have signed contracts yet because we’re working on making them better, and until we have a signed statement, we can’t go, “Hey, Suzi Sakura of the Sexy Electric Mandolin will be coming to our con!”

Yes, I am a busy bee.

Alright… here Rogue and I talk about previous jobs we had. Punkie and Rogue – Fireside Meanderings:Oh, the Jobs You’ll Work. You also get to hear about Intercon, a compnay many friends of mine worked for, and I so desperately wanted to.

New power supply still en route so I can start editing Trolley as early as the end of this week, but I built a lot of buffer time, so I am still on schedule. In other news, Katsucon still winds down as my wife and I get ready for a YEAR of convention running. Probably 2 years, but we have to be approved by the board for K19, so we better do a damn good job with K18.

No new Balticon Podcasts, but they have me as a guest or staff, not sure which, for Balticon 45. My first Balticon was 18, so I feel old.

Things are looking up…

Back into editing

Katsucon is OVER for now and I am co-chair. Time to return to editing Trolley.

Sadly, my desktop died. I have a spare, but it’s really low-power. It’s going to be difficult until I get a new power supply. Stupid stinkbug got caught up in the fan and fried it. The smell is atrocious; it took several days for my den to smell normal again.

… stupid stinkbugs.