My feet STILL hurt…

Yes, another week has passed, and I didn’t post a blog last week due to Further Confusion. Mhari and I both are very tired out, with Mhari suffering more than I, in general. She seems to have caught some bug, be it a cold or something more, it really doesn’t matter because she’s just plain not doing so well… and her weekly meds didn’t help that one bit… I’m worried, but it doesn’t seem too bad. But that doesn’t stop me from being worried.

As for myself, my feet still hurt from all the time I spent on my feet at the convention. My back pains me as well for the same reason. But I am slowly recovering and getting caught up on the sleep I missed. However, at the same time my paying job is really taking my time wholesale. I will be working this weekend, if from home. And I really am not happy about that. I was looking for a weekend where I could relax and do mostly nothing to further recover from the convention. I also would not be surprised if I end up working NEXT weekend as well and have to miss the PnP gaming session that will be happening. I may have to wait for DunDraCon on Valentine’s Day weekend before I will be able to ‘relax’ and recover. Grrrrr.

Further Confusion 2009
You know… I really don’t have a lot to say about the convention. Others are a LOT better at convention reports than I am, and there is lots of video coverage and photos showing up on the net. Just go do a search on the words ‘Further Confusion 2009’ on google and you are sure to find lots and lots of things about it.

FC2009 was a very good convention. While I am not as filled with post-con energy and immediate desire to do the next one as I was after last year’s convention, it was still a blast. Part of the difference is that I really didn’t get to see much of the convention other than the part of it that I ran. I got to see lots and lots of the Dealer Room, Con Store and Furry Market Place. Things in those areas ran very, very well and my staff did a DAMN good job of making the experience a low-stress one. There were no big crisis, no huge dramas, nothing that makes me have a single bad thing to say at all. Which means that we did it right, we did it well, and people didn’t drop loads of grief on me.

All my hard decisions were made before the con. I managed to get everyone that stayed on the waiting list right up to the beginning of the convention into one of the selling spaces. I did have to give one dealer a lot less space than he needed, but thanks to another dealer having brought one of those four-foot work tables that are sold at the big chain office stores, he had a better laid out space than he would have had. I wish I could have given him more space, and I had to squeeze another of our dealers onto a similar space, but it all worked out and they were able to sell.

This was our last year at the DoubleTree, which made the end of the con really bittersweet. It was bitter because we were not going to be back there. Sweet because the new space will have MORE space which I hope to be able to use better and thus give all my dealers more elbow room and fairer space. We’ll have to wait and see.

This past weekend was also an important milestone in a way that got a lot less press and celebration than it should have gotten… but maybe another California furry convention will give it the due it deserves. You see, this past weekend was also the 20th anniversary of Furry Conventions as a whole. For on that weekend, 20 years ago, ConFurence Zero happened in southern California. On that same weekend, in 1989, 65 to 87 (depending on who you talk to) fur fans gathered and started a January tradition that continues to this day with Further Confusion. ConFurence may be gone, but there’s a whole world where there are fur fan conventions every year. And NONE of them would have come about without the success of that first one and the furry parties that came before it. It’s my hope that the folks at CaliFur 5, happening in the first week of June this year, will give it some of the due it deserves. Twenty years of furry fandom being organized enough to hold conventions… that’s nothing to sneeze at.

I am surprised that we (Further Confusion) didn’t do more than the single panel devoted to the subject. But at the same time, I will admit that until someone pointed it out to me, I didn’t realize that the weekend WAS the 20th anniversary. So it is entirely possible that we were so busy just trying to do this convention at all that we didn’t step back and really realize the historic event that it was.

As you can imagine, we didn’t really get to play much City of Heroes this week. But we DID get online on Monday, some of us, with Whyaylooh being with Mhari and I at our place it was three of us from our household, and Nighty and Zafel from their household. We did some before we pooped out from exhaustion from the convention we had just finished. Then Wednesday we got together and rather than doing ‘Flying Fox’s Team’ we formed an adhoc team of other Dark-Star members and did some high-level content for a few hours.

Tonight is villain night, though we may move that to Wednesdays starting next week so Tigrise can join us on the ‘dark side’ each week. We’ll see. But tonight, tonight the Wolf Pack will HOWL!

Thanks for reading… I plan to be back next week… and be sure to read the my latest book review elsewhere in my blog. Thanks!

Book Review: ‘Brimstone Kiss’ by Carole Nelson Douglas

Brimstone Kiss by Carole Nelson Douglas

Brimstone Kiss is book 2 of the ‘Delilah Street, Paranormal Investigator’ series. The first book was Dancing with Werewolves from last year. You really, really need to read the first book before reading this one.

Delilah Street is an orphan from Kansas who worked as a paranormal investigative reporter for WTCH-TV until office politics, a ‘vampire’ newscaster and his weather witch of a girlfriend almost literally blew Delilah from town. Delilah saw an episode of CSI Las Vegas V in which there was a morgue scene in which there was a twin of her, right down to a nose stud, on the autopsy table. So, with no reason to stay in Kansas, she moved to Las Vegas to search for her twin and discovered a LOT more going on than just a TV show with her twin in it. But all that discovery happened in the first book, in which she gained a new home, a new job, a new boyfriend and new pet. As well as a passel of new enemies.

In Delilah Street’s world, things are similar to ours, but changed in significant ways due to something that happened in the year 2000: The Millennium Revelation. In that year all the things that go ‘bump in the night’ and were thought to be only fiction have come out from under the bed and out of the dark closet. Werewolves, vampires, witches and zombies are just some of them. And some of those zombies are imbued through magic and science with new life from the black and white age of film. These zombies become CinSims (Cinema Simulacrums) whose appearance and nature are based on the merging of the actor and the character the actor portrayed. So there are multiple Bogarts, multiple Lon Chaney’s and so on.

It is now 2013 (or thereabouts) and Delilah Street lives in Las Vegas in an Enchanted Cottage on the estate of the Hector Nightwine, producer of the CSI Las Vegas V TV show and is investigating the 80 year cold case of the murder of a pair of lovers back from before Las Vegas was the ‘power’ that it is today. But in both the discovery of the bones of the lovers (in the first book) and in just the fact that she looks like that body in the TV show (around which a cult is forming, of sorts), Delilah has stirred up a whole passel of troubles and things that the powers that run Vegas really preferred stayed buried like the murdered lovers.

In general this book adds a number of pieces to the puzzle, adds more questions, and reveals more about the post Millennium Revelation world (or at least Las Vegas). We learn more about the lovers, more about the CinSims, more about Delilah’s various ’employers’ as well as a little more about her dog, Quicksilver, and her boyfriend, Ric Montoya. But most of the book is just investigations and Delialh getting herself into more trouble. She discovers that some of her ‘enemies’ may be closer to friends, and that there is more going on than meets the eye in Vegas. But really nothing is resolved and things don’t move along that much. This feels a lot more like just another step along a long, long path.

All in all, I really don’t feel like this book had any story of it’s own. No real start, middle or end. Delilah Street is a GREAT character, and the world is really interesting, but this felt less like a book and more like a collection of episodes in an old movie serial. Even the end of the book, where we suddenly have a big event causing a undefined change in one of the characters feels like something you would find in one of those serials. Maybe this is the author’s intent, in which case she did a really good job, but I, as a reader, was sort of swimming around through the book looking for something to be resolved, even if it was something small, but I never found it, unless that something was intended to be the Name of book and the bestowing of that kiss.

I did enjoy this book, and I really want to read the next one, and I hope it is on the same schedule as the last to, targeting them for a October release. But I also see that Ms. Nelson writes very prolifically, so we’ll see.