The Wandering Designer’s Convention Update!

It’s been a while since I was able to give an update here about what I’ve been working on. That’s probably because I’ve been busy working and traveling! Here are some of the highlights:

  • I was a guest down at Escapist Expo in Durham, North Carolina, and had the pleasure of being on the ‘You Game Like A Girl’ panel there with my compatriots in feminist discourse, Anja Keister, Iris Explosion and Stella Chuu. (The panel video is up online here to check out!) Along with the fantastic ZP Keister, they did their amazing D20 Burlesque show for the Escapist crowd, and I got the opportunity to hang with the gentlemen of Evil Hat Productions, Rob Donoghue and Fred Hicks, as well as Daniel Solis. We played games, we had fun, and it was an honest to goodness blast. I really recommend Escapist if you are a fan of their site, if you’re a fan of a nicely sized convention with great people, and if you’re a fan of a friendly city for a visit.
  • I attended New York Comic Con and did some reporting on it for – you can see my coverage of the Marvel Television panel, the Dracula Screening and the Cosplay over at Tor. I also got a chance to see the Defiance panel and ask the cast my question, plus got a great chance to see the Welcome to Night Vale panel. Had a fantastic blast, with much thanks to my friend Justin Reyes for helping me with my camera gear. I also was a convert to the Pokemon nation that weekend – Pokemon X for me! It’s my new relaxation helper. Highlights were getting a chance to shake hands with Kelly Sue DeConnick, the Marvel writer of Captain Marvel and the Avengers. I’m a huge fan of her work and her constant contribution to the discourse about women in the geek world.
  • Not long after I was on the road again to head to GeekGirlCon out in Seattle. It was an absolute pleasure to meet up with folks out there. I had the pleasure of being on panels about creating safe spaces at conventions with brilliant folks like Jennifer Stuller, burlesque performer and organizer Jo Jo Stilletto, fiction writer and safe space advocate K.T. Bradford, pop culture scholar Rob Salkowitz. The second panel was about Female Characters in Video Game Design and was sat by some fantastic folks like Kimberly Voll, Elsa Sjunneson-Henry and Anita Sarkeesian. It was my honest pleasure to be a part of both, as they gave me a chance to talk about my two favorite things – how to create convention space for all and how women are represented in video games. Later I got the chance to do a panel/workshop on LARP 101 and then presented the Nordic game LIMBO to a crew of players. (I’ll have a full write-up of that shortly). It seemed the game really touched everyone very deeply. I was floored by how well people did with the material and how deeply they threw themselves into the roleplay. Overall it was an incredible weekend – I found the entire community to be welcoming and fantastic, and I was loathe to miss the whole Sunday program to fly home. But family vacation in Orlando called!
  • Shortly thereafter I was out at Dystopia Rising‘s big season ender for New Jersey known as DeathCon! Every October we throw a big four-day zombie apocalypse adventure and this year all the stops were pulled out, folks. My shift with fellow storyteller Liam Neery created a cacophony of in-game screams as we unleashed terrifying raiders on the fictional town of Hayven, and madness and fun was had by all. As a player I enjoyed myself a great deal, but it was my pleasure getting a chance to once again rain storyteller heck down on the player base. Special shout out to the Unholy Sideshow and D20 Burlesque for performing at the game- it was overall a hell of a weekend.

So now I’m back in the workflow of things, my traveling having been completed for the season. Well, almost. Because next week is… Metatopia! I’m very excited to say that I’ll not only be attending Metatopia but I’ll be sitting on a couple of panels, as well as running a few playtests. I’m planning on doing a playtest for my RPG Wanderlust plus doing a run of my freeform game Service as well. It did well being tested on my NYU Game Center friends, now let’s see how it holds up against other gamers. This Metatopia has so much on the schedule that I’m excited to just get a chance to sit in on panels and talk to people. It’s going to be pretty packed. So check me out at the following:

  • Friday 11AM – Translating Tabletop to LARP
  • Friday 2PM – How to Manage Adult Content
  • Friday 3PM-5PM WANDERLUST RPG Discussion
  • Saturday 4PM – Inclusivity: Inviting Women to the Table

And after that… well, it’s just work time. The con season will officially be over until February, when Dreamation 2014 has me plotting LARP fun. Until then, I’ve got some projects to do – including all the stuff to prepare for my thesis at the Game Center. There’s going to be a full article on here about that very shortly, so stay tuned!

So the travel season is over, and I’m glad to be home. In truth, traveling is fantastic but it does take away from work time. I have lots of projects coming up in the near future and I’m excited to buckle down and get to work. Meanwhile, my bleary-eyed self is getting to bed so I can get up for class tomorrow. And so it continues!

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