It’s time to report on my latest convention visit! Two weekends ago I attended Atlanta’s MONSTERAMACON. I’ve been incorporating more cons into my schedule because they’re not just a great way to meet people and sell books, but I actually enjoy them. I love seeing weird people in weird costumes. I love all the crazy shit that other vendors are hawking. I love when people come to my table and see a bizarro book for the first time. Most of all I love selling some damn books.
But this trip wasn’t all fun and games. While I’m happy to report that I sold enough books and even enjoyed myself, this convention was defined for me by some real roller-coaster-of-emotions shit. Before Monsterama I hadn’t been to a con in almost a year, and leading up to that weekend I was feeling a lot of depression and generalized terror. Part of it was social anxiety, but it was also a week where things were just going wrong on every front. Even Donald Trump’s “grab them by the pussy” tape leaked the day before the con, like a bad omen. I seriously felt like I was scheduled to have a plane fall out of the sky and crash into the exact spot I was standing in.
Of course, I’m still here. Everything turned out fine. I made it to the con safely, I sold some books, talked to some fellow nerds, and met a very young girl who kept begging her grandpa for a Chucky doll. It was a really good time for nine straight hours of sitting at a table. As usual, it was never as bad as I felt it was. The depression and anxiety sort of built themselves up that week only to come toppling down as soon as I threw myself out into the world. That’s the feeling I was left with after this con. In spite of all my instincts, a plane didn’t fall out of the sky and hit me.
This is the only picture I took of the con. I sat directly beneath it. It was ominous and beautiful at the same time, like the eye of Robo-God. I’ve always gotten this sense of dread before I do anything big, but this time it was especially hard. I hope, as I attend more conventions in the future, that this feeling dissipates so that I can start stressing about even bigger plans. Because I don’t think the stress ever goes away. You just overcome it and then move on to the next thing that terrifies you.