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Montreal WorldCon Day 4: Hugos, a play reading, and more food

Today’s highlight would ordinarily have been the Hugo Awards, presented this evening here at the World Science Fiction Convention in Montreal, but as it happened we were rather late arriving at the Hugos because I ended up having a dinner meeting with my edito,r Sheila Gilbert, and her fellow publisher at DAW Books, Betsy Wollheim. Among many other things, we discussed my–or, at lest, my alter ego Lee Arthur Chane’s–next book, Magebane, and Sheila suggested I send along some of what I have so far after I told her I’d been struggling a bit with it. I expect that to be very helpful and was grateful she suggested it.

By the time we got to the Hugos, the place was full to the walls, and so we ended up sitting on the floor near an exit. Still, we saw all the major awards. Neil Gaiman’s The Graveyard Book won the Best Novel Hugo. It’s already a Newbery winner, of course. I’ve read it, and it’s a fine book, but I really think the Hugo should have gone to Neal Stephenson’s Anathem. So did Gaiman: he said he’d been so sure Anathem would win he hadn’t even bothered to prepare a speech.

The other highlight of the day was a reading of a play by Hayden Trenholm, winner of the Aurora Award last year for best short-form work in English and my fellow nominee for long-form work this year. Trophies was written for Calgary’s Lunchbox Theatre a few years ago, and is a vampire story with an ironic twist, a lot of humor, and a thoroughly obnoxious “alpha male” stockbroker-type character: that would be me. It was fun to do. (For the second time, actually; I was part of a previous reading at ConVersion in Calgary a few years ago, a reading in which my wife also took part.) Today’s cast also included Hayden, his publisher (Virginia O’Dine of Bundoran Press) and Canadian writer Susan Forrest. A Good Time Was Had By All, and we had a pretty fair turnout, too.

I also sat in the autograph area, but signed very little (I signed more books elsewhere, actually). I sold every copy of Lost in Translation, Marseguro and Terra Insegura I had brought with me, and Chapters, which had no copies of my books when I arrived, managed to scare up a handful of books which also sold out. Obviously I should have brought more, but usually I end up lugging the things home with me!

Those were today’s highlights. All that’s left now is my joint reading with Alison Sinclair…at 10 a.m. tomorrow morning. Not exactly prime time for drawing an audience, but I hope that maybe someone will show up.

One day to go…

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