What I’ve Been Up To For the Past Week

So, I went on a boat.

camera photo of an island against a sunset sky, boats in harbor and lights glowing against its silhouette

St Thomas at dusk

This was my first time on a cruise ship, and while I have to admit that cruise travel isn’t for me — it was intensely frustrating to visit an interesting place for only a few hours, when I prefer to immerse for days or weeks — I did enjoy doing it with a buncha nerds, a.k.a. the SeaMonkeys of the JoCoCruise. The whole thing is a massive, 7-day-long immersive science fiction convention, except it’s also got cool stuff like comedy shows and performances by amazing musicians, so really it’s a thing all its own. Not cheap, and not extraordinarily diverse, and I did hear one woman mentioning some accessibility issues… though I get the sense they’re working on all these things. But if you’re looking for a nice nerdy vacation? This is the thing. I went snorkeling! I had conch fritters! Too many highlights to name.

I was there as a performer, part of the writing track run by John Scalzi and Pat Rothfuss. Giving a reading on a boat is a fascinating experience, not the least because your reading might be interrupted at dramatic moments by a shipwide safety drill complete with klaxons and the captain’s voice droning “BRAVO. BRAVO. BRAVO. ECHO. ECHO. ECHO,” et cetera, at the story’s climax. There’s really nothing to do but laugh at something like that. But I rallied and read the damn thing anyway, as loudly as I could, and most of the people in attendance tell me they were able to hear it. And they were so appreciative of my perseverance that they gifted me with this adorable, glorious creature, whom I have dubbed Bravo the Dolphin. Thanks, folks! ::still tickled pink::

stuffed dolphin decorated with sparkly things and a button that reads BRAVO! BRAVO! BRAVO!

So, that was my week. Today is recovery day, while I regain my land legs — really disconcerting to feel like an apartment building is swaying beneath you, hope that goes away soon — and get used to the northern winter sun again. How’s your week been, folks?

4 Responses »

  1. It was kind of neat to see Scalzi’s post about the cruise in which he gushes about you, and then wander over here and see your post about the cruise.

  2. The “boat head” will go away in less than 24 hours. I find it’s worse in the shower. Scalzi had said he wouldn’t be back until March 1 so I actually read your account of the cruise first. Sounds like it was a good time.

  3. I’m a veteran Seamonkey and it was fantastic having you on the cruise. As I said when I had the opportunity to briefly fanboy at you, I discovered your work after you were announced for the cruise and I’m so, so glad. If some of your readers come to the cruise through your experience with it, that would be fantastic. I hope you have the opportunity and inclination to join us again in the future!

  4. I think Bravo the dolphin may be a little under-decorated…

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The Obelisk Gate

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