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Monday at Eastercon is always a weird thing. Very much about the take down and only a few items on.

My plan for this day was to attend two interesting items.

One was Aging Societies, a panel with John Scalzi and Caroline Mullen. In this, the three panelists discussed ideas about how society cold deal with the growing elderly population in the future. The solution in Scalzi’s Old Man’s War was obviously discussed as were a few other books that looked at concepts of immortality. I was surprised no one mentioned the Peter F Hamilton books (Mispent Youth  and the Commonwealth Saga) which explore this topic but otherwise it was a very interesting conversation. As a former gerontologist, I had opinions… but I may bother to put them into a blog post on aging later.


6C1A8520-Pano.jpgThen I went to a coffee date with Frances Hardinge. Like John Scalzi’s similar event on Sunday, this was a relatively informal chat with the author over coffee or tea and, in this specific case, biscuits.

Because, being a LRPer and it being something clearly built into the DNA of the average live action roleplayer, Frances had managed to overcater on biscuits. This many:


For 12 people.

However, she had also been thoughtful enough to supply gluten free jammy dodgers which was a major plus in my mind and meant I could indulge in biscuits…

Discussion covered the range of her books and touched upon possible film adaptations (two of her books have been optioned – Cuckoo Song and The Lie Tree – but this is no guarantee of an actual TV series being produced), her tendency to be both weird and cruel to her characters (and how they went back to her early attempts at writing when she was 6) and the strange things young children ask authors. Overall, a very fun and interesting hour of conversation.

After that, I worked in the green room for a few hours and that was pretty much it for my time at the con other than drinking and socialising and spending the ‘groats’ I had acquired volunteering. These are special Eastercon fake money given to volunteers that can be spent on pretty much anything. The bar accepts them (as apparently does the hotel to pay for room bookings over the event etc.) and the traders at the convention will exchange books. jewellery or cat’s ears for them. I even heard a rumour that some of the surrounding restaurants were also accepting them… I spent mine on some food, some drinks and a book from one of the traders. This year, the groats had been designed by Sidney Padua – one of the guests of honour – and looked amazing. I kept one (despite it being worth £2!) for the cool value alone… I mean, look at this artwork…