PopCon 2015: A Very Late Report

I have been so ridiculously busy lately that it’s not even funny.  With two conventions within a month, and moving during one of those conventions, plus finally getting a full time position at IT Training (wooo!), I haven’t had much time to actually post about my fun experiences at Indy PopCon last month!  So, here are my thoughts, in no particular order, along with some photos!

The biggest thing about PopCon this year was getting the chance to meet one of my favorite actors.  He’s been in Star Trek, Breaking Bad, Invader Zim, and My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, to name a few of the many things he’s been a part of.

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Yes.  Ross and I got to meet John deLancie.  And I completely forgot how to form words, haha.

I ended up having him sign one of my favorite Discord-centric issues of the My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic comic, and I think pretty much everyone I know who’s a Star Trek/MLP fan hates me a little bit for getting to meet him, haha.  (Although if you guys want to hate me more for meeting famous people, remind me to tell you my Ian McKellan story…)

Anyhow, we also got to see plenty of lovely cosplayers, including Yamino of Yamino Cosplay/GeekGasm Boutique!  She was dressed as Faye Valentine on Friday, and Morticia Addams on Saturday – both very well done costumes.  You should check out her Facebook page and Etsy store – she’s done some amazing costumes!

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I also had the pleasure of running into one of my awesome IT Training co-workers, Rachel of the Five-ish Fangirls Podcast!

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And yes, we were both dressed as Pinkie Pie on Friday at the convention.  I also attended part of her My Little Pony panel, and she did a great job with it!  I’m hoping that The Crafty Nerd and The Five-ish Fangirls can get together to do some nerdy awesomeness later on. 😀

Overall, PopCon was even more awesome than last year.  They were still incredibly organized – even when the line to meet/get photos with Markiplier ended up being a mile long.  Photos and autographs with media guests were just as organized as ever, there were all sorts of interesting panels, and they upgraded the badges for this year too to nice plastic ones!

All in all, I was incredibly pleased with PopCon this year – and I can’t wait for next year!

And, of course, here are a number of awesome cosplayers and other nifty things I saw during both days of the convention!

And now… to get ready for GenCon.  Which is today.  Ross and I are leaving in ten minutes, in fact.  AND PATRICK ROTHFUSS WILL BE THERE.  *flail*  So, expect the annual Gen Con Report over the next few days!  It’s going to be… interesting this year.

Book Review: The Lies of Locke Lamora

127455 After my vacation in Florida towards the end of May, where I tore through a ton of books rather rapidly, I found myself lacking in the books-to-read department.  I’d finished the last of the new books that came out earlier this spring, I’d read through a couple of my favorites by Stephen King, and even read through the first book in the Mercy Thompson series – and couldn’t think of any other books I had been interested in reading.  So I took to Goodreads, and looked for suggestions based on the books I’d read (that I’d actually entered into Goodreads, anyway.)  And as I was poking through the suggested books, The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch popped up.  I’d heard it mentioned around the internet as a good book to read, and so I figured, what the heck, I’ll go to Amazon and buy it.

And then I saw this review on Amazon, and absolutely knew I’d enjoy it.

“Right now, in the full flush of a second reading, I think The Lies of Locke Lamora is probably in my top ten favorite books ever. Maybe my top five. If you haven’t read it, you should. If you have read it, you should probably read it again.”—Patrick Rothfuss, New York Times bestselling author of The Name of the Wind

If Pat Rothfuss, whose books I absolutely adore, says the book is good, then by gods, I should probably read it, right?  So I picked it up.  And I couldn’t put it down.

Continue reading

Classy Crafting: Spring 2015

It’s been quite a while since I’ve done a Classy Crafting post – and I was particularly productive last semester when it came to crafts!  I finished two shawls and started a third, and worked on a couple of other random projects that have ended up stuffed in my “in progress” pile in the basement…  Here’s the crafts that I finished this semester, though, that I worked on during my spring classes!

Rarity’s Shawl

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I made this shawl as a birthday present for Ross’ mom, and draped it over Rarity (who was also part of the gift)! She absolutely loved it.  I had a great time making the shawl – it was my first knitting project in a very long time, and my first project with sock yarn.  The way the yarn striped as I worked on the pattern was awesome to see, too!

Pattern: Pretty Basic (Ravelry)

Cozy Rose Shawl

IMG_20150524_114937The idea for this shawl was born from a Knit Picks sampler pack of yarn I bought – I fell in love with the colors, and had been wanting to make this wrap for a while, and after some creative splitting up of the shawl so it could work with four colors instead of two, I got to crocheting.  It ended up coming out beautifully, and the yarn is incredibly soft.  I wore this with a matching dress to Ross’ mom’s wedding a few weeks ago, and got lots of compliments on it!

Pattern: Ocean Splash Wrap (Ravelry)

Sunset (Shimmer) Shawl

IMG_20150520_145927This one I didn’t end up finishing during class, but I did finish it up during finals week.  This was the result of another pattern lingering in my Ravelry queue matching up with a Knit Picks sampler – and I think this is my most favorite project yet.  While I wasn’t sure about the colors at first, I kept chugging through, and as it came together I fell more and more in love with it.  I originally called it the Sunset Shawl, but then jokingly ended up calling it the Sunset Shimmer Shawl, due to it having a similar color scheme to the My Little Pony: Equestria Girls character of the same name…

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… yeah, I do suppose I have to work some pony into everything I do, don’t I? 😀

Pattern: Perfectly Elegant Shawl (Ravelry)

I’ve got some more projects I’m working on, including some crafty nerdiness for my new car (yes, I’m finally learning how to drive) that I’ll show off when I’m done! 😀

 

 

The Slacker Nerd

I know.  It’s been almost a month since I last posted.  I swear, I’ve got good reasons for being quiet, though!

Kitties!

Kitties!

Like these girls, Sara (left) and Hannah (right).  They’re Steve’s litter mates, and are apparently experiencing selective amnesia and forgetting they’re actually related to the little guy.  Steve meows confusedly at them, and they want nothing to do with him right now.  Eventually, they’ll all be a happy kitty family again, but for now, there’s a lot of hissing and hiding under couches.  (Ross is at home right now, trying to lure Hannah out from under a loveseat at the moment…)

Steve approves of the blanket I'm crocheting.

Steve approves of the blanket I’m crocheting.

And there’s been a lot of crafting, too.  I keep finding craft projects to keep my hands occupied while I power through Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.  I’ve finished a couple of crocheting projects, and I’ve been working on some counted cross-stitch too. My biggest project is one I’m making for my friend Josie, a cross-stitch inspired by the wallpaper in Sherlock’s (of BBC fame) apartment, and it’s coming along really nicely.  I think it might be the biggest cross-stitch project I’ve ever worked on – I think it’s going to be roughly 10 by 13 inches when it’s done.

Sketching up stuff for work.

Sketching up stuff for work.

I’ve also been incredibly busy with work, too.  I’m about to start writing three workshops and two webinars, and on top of that I’ve been working on blog posts for work as well, and I just got assigned the title of ILS blogger too.  All the stuff on my plate, work-wise, is making my head positively spin – but I wouldn’t change it for the world, as I absolutely love both of my jobs.

I’m going to make it a point to post something once a week from here on out.  Or prod Ross to fill in for me when I’m super busy.  After all, I do love my blog, and my readers, and I want to do my best to keep you all entertained! :)

March Book Madness! (and a contest!)

visioninsilverMarch seems to be the month of the year where all of my favorite authors conspire against my wallet and release books from their ongoing (or new, as in the case with one author I adore) series.  And this year is no exception – I have not one, not two, but three books from authors I enjoy coming out this month.

The first one is Vision in Silver, by Anne Bishop, which was released on March 3rd, 2015.  I’ve been following Anne’s works since 2004, when a friend of mine gave me a copy of the Black Jewels Trilogy, the start of what turned into a seven book dark fantasy series.  He said “this isn’t really my style, but maybe you’ll like them?” as he handed me the stack.  I devoured all three in roughly three days, and then got excited when I learned she was still publishing stories in that universe!  Vision in Silver is a novel set in the world of The Others, an alternate universe to our own filled with Anne’s unique take on supernatural creatures.  You’ll find shapeshifters, vampires, and prophets in the world of The Others.  The setting for the books is a modern-day society where these Others are more populous than humans – and don’t take kindly to humans trying to encroach on their territory.  Vision in Silver is the third book in the series – I’m currently finishing the first book, Written in Red, to refresh my memory before I read through Vision in Silver.

PrudenceCoverThe next book I’m excited about is Gail Carriger’s Prudence, due to be released on March 17th, 2015 – it’s the first book in the Custard Protocol Series.  Gail’s already written two book series’ in this universe, a steampunk version of our own world set in the late 19th century with a heaping dose of the supernatural.  I’m excited for this series – Gail’s first books, the Parasol Protectorate series, got me incredibly excited about the steampunk genre.  Her writing style is sassy and sometimes over the top, her characters are strong and likable (especially Alexia Tarabotti, Prudence’s mother), and there’s a liberal dose of humor sprinkled throughout her novels.  Plus, the way she writes her vampires and werewolves is refreshing – a different take than most books.  Her vampires are fashionable and almost prissy, and her werewolves are humorously rough around the edges.

With this being the first book in the Custard Protocol series, I’m not entirely sure what to expect.  What familiar characters will we run into during Prudence?  What sorts of ridiculous adventures will we get to read about?  And – the biggest question, for Gail’s fans – will everyone’s favorite vampire, Lord Akeldama, be making an appearance?  With this being a new series, readers who’ve never dipped their toes into the world of Gail Carriger’s novels can jump right in and not be lost, and then read through her other two series (The Parasol Protectorate series and the Finishing School series, a set of young adult novels set in the mid-19th century in the same universe as her other books) if you decide you want more.

Diamond-Conspiracy_finalAnd last, but certainly not least, is the latest entry into the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences series, written by Pip Ballantine and Tee Morris – The Diamond Conspiracy, set to release on March 31st, 2015.  The Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences novels are also in the steampunk genre, taking place in the late 19th century as well, and focus on two characters who are just about as different as night and day – Wellington Thornhill Books, the Ministry’s dashing archivist, and Eliza D. Braun, a field agent for the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences.  Where Books is quiet and calm, Braun is very in-your-face.  They take very different approaches when it comes to solving problems, and as you might expect, eventually opposites end up attracting… one of the sub-plots from the first book ends up working its way to a more major plot point as Books and Braun end up developing feelings for each other.  The books (of which The Diamond Conspiracy is the fourth) are full of action and adventure, mystery and intrigue, and interwoven with various subplots that help tie the stories all together, with a heaping helping of steampunky goodness thrown on top for good measure.

I’m so excited over having a month of good books to read, some of which I’ve been waiting a while for – and I’m going to share that excitement with you, with The Crafty Nerd’s first ever contest!

The Crafty Nerd’s March Book Madness contest!

The rules for entering are simple: post a comment on this entry with what book you’re excited about that’s coming out soon, and the winner (chosen randomly) will receive a $10 Amazon Gift Card!  Pick up the Kindle version of that book you’ve been wanting, or put the gift card towards a hardcover copy of something you’ve been looking forward to reading!  The contest will run until March 20th – so tell me what you’re looking forward to reading soon!

Chromebooks – Yay!

So Beth and I recently purchased a couple Toshiba Chromebook 2 laptops. We stumbled upon a display at an Office Depot one day and were impressed by their design and prices (Chromebooks have come a long way since the earlier models we were already familiar with), and the next day I picked up a model CB35-B3340 during lunch, and Beth, being instantly impressed with it, purchased a model CB35-B3330 the same evening. The only apparent differences between the two Toshiba Chromebook 2 models is the 3340 has 4GB of RAM and a 1080 HD IPS display vs the 3330’s 2GB of RAM and a standard display.

I opted for the 3340 due to the extra memory and resolution, and while the extra RAM proved to be an immediate benefit (tons of tabs could remain open without bogging down my fanless sweety), it wasn’t until I realized how well pages rendered when zoomed in I ceased longing for Beth’s far more readable text (my eyes would ache reading some articles, especially those fixed-width pages taking up all of a fifth of the screen real estate). Web developers, the majority of you create wonderful sites I can browse on any device and enjoy the experience. The rest of you? To hell with your fixed-width 1990s-centric “best viewed in Y browser at CRAPxPOOP resolution” pages. I know you don’t specify such recommendations these days, but I see it in your designs… you’ll never fool me!
Ahem.
See for yourself how an “I hate anything over 640×480” page renders on my Chromebook vs zooming in using handy keyboard shortcuts. Amazing. This feature alone made me fall in love with my Chromebook all over again! And for those wanting to take it a step further, the resolution of the entire screen can be adjusted. I won’t detail the steps to do this, simply press ctrl+alt+? (yes it’s all lower case on a Chromebook keyboard!) and mash the ctrl, alt, and shift keys to see a wealth of delicious shortcuts. No, I haven’t tasted them all.

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My layout sucks and my parents disowned me…

 

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…but thanks to zooming, you’ll soon forget my crippling inadequacies!

 

I’ve read several reviews bashing this Chromebook’s performance. In my not-so-humble-opinion, either those reviewers were out of touch and possessed excessive expectations, were using older versions of Chrome OS, or were just plain derp. Or all three.
The Chromebook has entirely replaced my Windows or Linux-based laptops, unless I’m gaming or in need of serious horsepower (e.g. transcoding video). The <5 second cold boot, instant-on from standby, and (in my experience thus far) 7 to 11 hour battery life has made using a laptop a more enjoyable experience than before. When it comes to word processors, etc. both Google Drive applications and Office 365 render beautifully in the browser, and even media-rich documents display with very little perceptible lag. When scrolling through a bunch of such pages quickly it’s evident I’m not on my speed demon desktop, but the delay never gets in the way of usability.
Oh, and being able to access and control all of my computers and servers thanks to Secure Shell (ssh in a browser whaaaat) totally sealed the deal in making the Chromebook my primary mobile device.

Eventually I’ll get bored of vanilla Chrome OS and install Linux alongside it, or, if I can manage to install a custom BIOS, replace Chrome OS entirely. But for the time being I’m happy to enjoy what Chrome OS has to offer and learn to work around any limitations. After all, I’m frequently asked to recommend laptops for friends and coworkers, and for those who can’t (rightfully so) justify spending over $300 for something they’ll use for internet browsing, word processing, and streaming, Chromebooks are a wonderful alternative. Oh, and I suppose being unaffected by viruses and malware is a stupidly awesome advantage over a Windows-based laptop as well!

Discovering Star Trek

I’ll admit, in some ways I’m a bit of a late blooming nerd.  I may have been playing video games since I was in kindergarten, in the days of the Nintendo Entertainment System, and I’ve been a fan of science-related things (especially anything related to the solar system) since my dad brought home the Adventures in the Solar System book and book-on-tape combo when I was six.  (And yes, that link takes you to the same audio book I listened to as a kid, although with a different book cover.  Oh, the nostalgia…)  But I’d never watched Buffy the Vampire Slayer until 2013.  I hadn’t read Ender’s Game until I was in my late 20s.  And I hadn’t seen any Star Trek, aside from Generations when it was in the theaters (it was my first date ever!) and the reboot movies, until very recently. Despite having a mother who really enjoyed Star Trek, though, I never really got into it.

Now these guys all feel like my best friends, haha.

Now these guys all feel like my best friends, haha.

Ross, however, grew up on Star Trek.  He can rattle off the specifications of half the ships in the show, and tell you about all sorts of connections between the various series of Star Trek.  Heck, he just flopped down next to me with the Star Trek: The Next Generation Technical Manual and is reading it while I’m writing this.  And me, being the curious person I am, and looking for something new to watch, and having enjoyed the reboot movies and shows like Firefly and Farscape, figured I’d see what Ross enjoyed so much and jump in with Star Trek: The Next Generation.  The only knowledge I went into the show with was that there was an android in there named Data, that Patrick Stewart played Jean-Luc Picard and was generally pretty damn awesome, and that LeVar Burton was in it (I watched a lot of Reading Rainbow as a kid, and was pretty excited to see him in something else).  And Whoopi Goldberg was in there somewhere.  And that they were all on the USS Enterprise.  But that was it.

Now, a couple months after watching my first episodes of The Next Generation, I’m following the entire cast of TNG on Twitter.  All my alert noises on my cellphone are various alert tones and computer noises from Star Trek.  (I get very confused when the Enterprise gets hailed when I’m watching TNG, as I’m not sure if the ship’s just received a message or if I have)  I watch at least an episode a day, if not more, and I’m almost halfway through season six of The Next Generation – and I just started season two of Deep Space Nine.  I’m seeing what pulled everyone else into the world of Star Trek.

The biggest thing I’ve noticed about watching Star Trek is that some of these episodes really tug at your feelings.  I’ve become attached to the characters, and care about what happens to them.  I freaked out when Dr. Crusher mysteriously disappeared for the entirety of Season 2 of TNG, and was incredibly relieved when she came back for season 3.  I watched Wesley grow up from a whiny little teenager and enter Starfleet Academy.  I felt so many feels every time Data would long to be human, and would try his hardest to emulate human behaviors to become more like his crewmates.  I eventually grew to like Counselor Troi, and I can even tolerate her ridiculous mother now.  (Barely.)  Watching Worf deal with the fact that he’s got a son, and watching him be a parent, is equally touching and hilarious.  (I may have recently watched Too Many Datas, and spent half the episode laughing…)

And there’s more to it than the feels I get when watching particularly good episodes.  I’ve gotten sucked into the fandom. I spend time poking around on subreddits dedicated to Star Trek, and enjoy reading through new fan theories and interesting discussions.  I watch ridiculous videos of You Tube captions failing horribly when it comes to captioning video from a Klingon video game.  I make up lyrics to the opening theme songs.  (Just ask Ross.  They’re ridiculous, and change almost every time I watch an episode…)

And I realized, once I run out of episodes of The Next Generation, that doesn’t mean that I’ve run out of Star Trek.  I still have all of the original series to watch, and Deep Space Nine, and Voyager, and Enterprise if I’m feeling desperate (I’ve heard it’s not very good), as well as all the movies.  And there’s even more than that.  There are books, and websites, and even more to go explore.  And it’s ridiculously exciting.  I feel much like I did when I discovered Sailor Moon, or My Little Pony – absolutely hooked.  I may be a nerdy late bloomer, but I’m glad I discovered my passion for Star Trek when I did.  I think I’m enjoying it more now than I would have had I tried to watch more than one episode on my tiny black-and-white TV as a kid.  You have no idea how excited I am to watch more episodes of the show, read more crazy fan theories (like the one where Guinan is apparently a time lord), talk about what I’ve seen with friends, and learn all there is to learn.  Ultimately, the Star Trek fan in me is what grew out of the little girl who used to sit in her dad’s den, listening to Adventures in the Solar System on the surround sound, looking at the brightly colored pictures of the planets and listening to the somewhat sci-fi-esque adventures of a little boy and his robot that can turn into a spaceship.  That little girl loved learning about space and the planets, and daydreamed about going out there herself someday – and this grown-up woman, well, she still dreams about it, and while she can’t exactly hop on a spaceship and go fly around the galaxy, she can lose herself in the stories of characters who do.

Two years of The Crafty Nerd!

I can’t believe it’s been two whole years since I started The Crafty Nerd!

I believe this calls for a PARTY

I believe this calls for a PARTY

In those two years, I’ve done a lot of awesome stuff…

And there’s a lot more awesome stuff to come, of course!  I’ve got more books to review (three in March alone!), more conventions to attend, more costumes to make, more crafts to blog about, and more games to play.  I hope to do bigger and more awesome things in the coming years, and I hope you’ll all stick with me as we go into our third year!

Game Review: Pairs (or: What to do while waiting for GenCon housing access)

Well, I found myself with some unexpected time on my hands today, and I’ve been intending to review this game for a bit, so….

 

Pairs: The Review

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I’ve had this game on a shelf since September, waiting for the chance to get to play it.  I discovered the Kickstarter for Pairs through Patrick Rothfuss’ blog, sometime last spring, and eagerly backed the project and snagged three decks as a result.  (I mean, come on, Pat could put his name on anything and I’d be likely to back it.)  There were many decks available to choose from, and I picked three with artwork from Pat Rothfuss’ Kingkiller Chronicles series, as I do love those books and was curious to see Shane Tyree and Nate Taylor’s artistic interpretation of the characters I’ve enjoyed reading about.  Once the decks finally got delivered, I opened them all up, looked at the beautiful artwork, and then set them in my “let’s play this later” pile on my bookshelf.

There are even more games, but they don't quite fit on the bookshelf...

There are even more games, but they don’t quite fit on the bookshelf…

Fast forward to today – the day housing access opens up on Gen Con’s website!  I eagerly awaited the coming of 12:00 pm, to see how long of a wait I’d have to get to the housing portal…

WHAT

WHAT

So, Ross and I figured this would be a good time to pick up Pairs and play.    Based on what I’d heard about it from the Kickstarter page, and what I’d read in the rules when I’d first opened the games, it seemed pretty simple – points were earned by getting a pair of cards, and the person with the highest score lost.  So, going off of that, we figured we’d shuffle the cards (which turned into an ordeal, due to the fact that neither of us can properly shuffle a deck of cards without turning it into a game of 52 Pick-Up) and start a game!  I read off the rules while Ross and I took turns slowly shuffling the deck – and the rules ended up being a little less straightforward than we initially thought…

It took Ross and I a little while to put the rules in terms we could wrap our brains around...

It took Ross and I a little while to put the rules in terms we could wrap our brains around…

Gameplay, for Ross and I, went as follows: Whoever dealt took five cards from the deck and put them face-down to start the discard deck, as the rules suggested, and then the dealer passed out a card to each of us – whoever had the lowest card went first.  Then, we’d take turns drawing cards, hoping neither of us would end up with a pair – especially a high scoring pair.  (The deck is a pyramid deck – there’s one 1, two 2s, three 3s, and so on, making your chances of getting a high numbered card pretty large.)  When one of us ended up with a pair, that ended the round – we’d set aside a card from that pair to keep score, and the rest went into the discard pile.  We repeated that until one of us hit 31 points, the suggested “losing” score number that the rules gave us.

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A round in progress…

 

It was actually pretty fun – and once we figured out what we were doing, we enjoyed it.  I think we ended up playing three games – I lost twice, Ross lost once.  It didn’t help too much that Ross kept commenting on the artwork on the cards – it hinted at what cards he had, haha.  The artwork for the Commonwealth Deck (the one we played with), done by Shane Tyree, is absolutely gorgeous. While I wish the art focused on specific characters in the Kingkiller Chronicles, the game is mentioned to be played in the universe of the stories – and characters from the story seeing themselves on a card, well, that’d be rather odd.

Steve enjoyed the game, too.  He thought it was tasty.

Steve enjoyed the game, too. He thought it was tasty.

Overall, it was a pretty fun game, and a good way to kill time.  I think it might have been even more fun with more people playing, but for Ross and I, it was pretty good too.  I might even bring this along with me if I’m going out to eat with a group of people, as a fun way of keeping everyone entertained while waiting for food.  If you want to learn more, visit the Pairs page on Cheapass Games’ website!

Well, killed some more time...

Well, killed some more time…

And it meant a half-hour’s worth of time not spent looking at the computer, anxiously waiting our turn for housing.  (At the time of this writing, I’ve got fourteen and a half minutes left – I hope hope hope there’s still room in the JW Marriott or even the Hampton Inn…)

Convention season is upon us!

Ohhh, it’s the most wonderful time of the year… no, not Christmas!  It’s the very beginning of convention season! My favorite conventions are announcing their dates, opening up pre-registration, and in the case of Indiana Comic Con, the convention itself is rapidly approaching!

pinkie_pie_by_theponyisatrue-d56tinh

Oh my gosh this is SO EXCITING

 

This year, I’m planning on attending the same three conventions I did last year:  Indiana Comic Con, Indy PopCon, and GenCon (of course!)  And aside from knowing that I’ll be Pinkie Pie, I have no idea what I’ll be cosplaying!

I mean, I’ve got some ideas.  Some of them are more feasible than others…

  • Ross and I were thinking of going as Rainbow Dash and Pinkie in full Grand Galloping Gala gear – however, this could get expensive.  And I want to be able to do it right, and look absolutely fabulous, you know?
  • I could just buy a Star Trek: The Next Generation era scientist outfit, dye my hair red, and go as Beverly Crusher.  Because she’s awesome.  Maybe Ross could be Data… maybe… his hair might be a little too long by then, though.
  • There’s always LazyPie and LazyDash – wigs, sweatshirts and jeans.  I feel like I’m cheating whenever I wear that combination of clothes, though…
  • … I have wanted to do “Good Morning Pinkie Pie” – with a tousled wig, my Rainbow Dash bathrobe and slippers, some ridiculous pink pajamas, and a coffee mug.  I’m envisioning Ross doing something similar as Rainbow Dash but with his Star Trek TNG bathrobe.  Which could be amusing.  This could be a thing.  I’ll have to think about it.
  • My steampunk costume could always use some love… I keep adding things to it, too.  It’s going to look pretty epic, whenever I get the chance to wear it again!

And aside from costumes, there’s a wealth of panels to go to at every convention.  I’m going to try to find all the My Little Pony themed ones I can, and enjoy the heck out of them!  Last year, there weren’t many pony-related things at PopCon and Indiana Comic Con (although I did get to buy a page from the Twilight Sparkle issue of the My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic comic book micro series at Comic Con!), but there were some things at GenCon that I wanted to go do. Sadly, the lack of a hotel room (rooms sold out crazily quick last year for GenCon!) made it hard for Ross and I to make it to later events – we ended up driving from Bloomington each day, an hour and a half-ish trip, and by late afternoon we were wiped out and ended up dragging our tired selves home around 5 pm.  While I’m not sure if we’ll be getting a hotel for Comic Con or PopCon, I’m gonna try my hardest to get a room for GenCon so I can provide much better convention coverage than last year!

I’m definitely excited to get the chance to see some of the guests at ComicCon.  There’s a ridiculous amount of stars coming, including….

  • Carrie Fisher (known better as Princess Leia! OMG)
  • Jenna Coleman (Clara from Doctor Who)
  • Jason Momoa (Khal Drogo!  *swoon*)
  • Billy West (who hasn’t he voiced?)
  • Paige O’Hara (the voice of Belle from Beauty and the Beast)

Needless to say, Indiana Comic Con is looking to be pretty exciting.  I hope it’ll be a better run convention than last year!  Meanwhile, I’m eagerly awaiting the guest lists for PopCon and GenCon.  PopCon is currently asking for suggestions for guests on their Facebook page, and I suggested Lil’ Bub – I love Bub, and she’s from Bloomington!  And she’s way better than Grumpy Cat.  For GenCon, I’m really, really, really hoping Patrick Rothfuss comes back.  I have more things I need him to sign.  Like a card game I’m working on a review for, and my Kindle.  And more books of his. Plus, he’s just an awesome guy!  I’m wondering if other authors I might know will show up – I’ll have to wait and see who gets announced!

So, in short, I’m really, really excited for this year’s convention season.  It looks as if it’s going to end up being exciting and fun-filled!  I’ll share updates on my convention preparations as things happen – especially if I figure out what I’m wearing and build new costumes!