Thursday, August 16, 2018

Shore Leave 40 - Saturday

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Saturday is always the busy day at a Shore Leave convention. There are too many panels and talks to attend every one you'd like, especially when they are scheduled at the same time. There are difficult decisions to make! Plus, I was helping some friends with taking pictures and getting autographs, so that came into play, too.

The first stop is always the restaurant where the Cinnamon Tree cooks up a nice buffet with made-to-order omelets, eggs, and waffles. Notice that was an "and" and not an "or." I did try to keep the calories under control, however. That being said, everyone eats a good-sized breakfast because there is never time for lunch—too much is going on. And dinner is usually late. After fueling up, we dove right into the action.

During the middle of the day the actor/actress guests were either talking, posing in the photo area for pictures with the fans, or signing autographs. Some in my party were getting multiple pictures taken with the actors/actresses, so I was left holding the bag ( or bags ) while they were busy. I also helped hold the autographed pictures while the signatures dried. They move the lines quickly there, so there are usually multiple photos in everyone's hands who are waving them in the air until the ink has set. Even though it doesn't take long, you still have to let them dry before putting them into their protective sleeves. The whole process can be quite awkward. I did get a picture with William Shatner, and his autograph, plus an additional one ( with an image from one of his Twilight Zone shows ) for a relative.

I didn't get to any of the writing panels on Saturday. The ones I could have attended were panels I'd been to 2 or 3 times over the years, often with the same panel members. A couple of others conflicted with scheduled talks, autograph lines, or photograph sessions. That's the way it is at these conventions; there are too many activities to get to all the ones you want to attend. Still, you do get to talk with writers all day long and at just about any time. With some authors, if you ask them about their book you have a hard time getting them to stop! They will discuss what is popular and what isn't doing as well, and most important, what might be coming up next. And there is always the opportunity to make or refresh connections with authors, some of whom are small press publishers. There isn't much free or wasted time at Shore Leave!

After getting the pictures and autographs, we caught part of the talks by Shawn Ashmore and Ming-Na Wen. I know the photographs from Shore Leave are not the best, but when the guests are on stage they always shine these yellow lights on them and this really messes with the images, especially from my little camera.

Ming-Na Wen at Shore Leave 40
Ming-Na Wen at Shore Leave 40

Shawn Ashmore at Shore Leave 40
Shawn Ashmore at Shore Leave 40

Around 4:00 pm, the second William Shatner talk / Q & A session started. Mr. Shatner does have some interesting responses to the questions people ask, but he seldom gets directly to the answer. "It will all be clear in a minute," he says, much to the amusement of the audience. Eventually he does get to the point, but it always took more than a minute. I had heard he was often a bit gruff, but he was very warm and engaging whenever I saw him.

William Shatner at Shore Leave 40
William Shatner at Shore Leave 40

About 7:00 pm I stopped by the room where the art auction was supposed to take place and found it was already over. Not many pieces went to auction ( none of mine where in the auction ), so it hadn't lasted long. It was at this time I discovered my painting ( Alien Dawn #1 ) had a bid but had not been picked up by the purchaser. That was when I became concerned they might not come back! I did spend time talking to the art show staff and got a lot of pointers on what to do for next year. They also discussed some of the changes coming to the art show rules to prevent items being offered for sale that might violate copyrights.

After this, we stopped by the pub ( The Paddock Bar, which is within the hotel ) for a light meal and refreshments, talked about what we'd seen during the day, and planned Sunday's activities.

As the others in our group decided to turn in for the night, Marie and I headed outside to where the stargazing activities were set up. There were several telescopes, and for once, clear skies. This is the first time in the last three (four?) years the weather has cooperated. We got to see Venus and Saturn, and yes, Saturn's rings were clearly visible! No UFOs or aliens, though. Not even a shuttlecraft.

That was all we could do for Saturday—it was time for bed!

© 2018 K. R. Smith All rights reserved

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