[Unfortunately, Alethea Kontis won’t be with us (though we will still be having our traditional "In Celebration of Alethea Kontis Opening Dinner"). However, Brian Keene will be joining us. So imagine him in that outfit.*]
Another year, another Mo*Con approaches: May 4th-6th (Cinco de Mo*Yo). I both love and dread this time of year. There is an excitement as Mo*Con is typically the opening to my convention season. It’s like my kickoff party. There is a dread as, well, with all the planning and detail work that goes into it, (and it’s strange how such a laid back con requires so much thought) my writing productivity drops to about nothing. But it’s totally worth it.
A lot of writers have regular (insert their name) cons, ranging from backyard bbq/parties to full borne conventions. There’s no easy way to describe Mo*Con. Some call it the Necon of the Midwest. Or compare it to a con suite convention, a convention room party for a whole weekend, except held in a church. Its aim has always been to be small and intimate, yet be like a family reunion.
Mo*Con has a two part vision. The first, inspired by many a late night at conventions, is to provide a forum for folks, namely my horror and fantasy writing colleagues, to get together and discuss some of the larger issues which affect our writing, our social conscience, and our spiritual lives. We can have discussions and disagree (the whole point is to disagree), yet listen to one another in a spirit of respect. The second is that too often the artist is underappreciated and we wanted an occasion to spoil a few. This year’s line up includes:
We’ll be debuting a few projects at this year’s Mo*Con, not the least of which are The Miseducation of the Writer, an anthology of essays by writers of color edited by myself, Chesya Burke, and John Edward Lawson. And a portion of the money raised at Mo*Con will be given to the Carl Brandon Society. Lastly, a strange thing has happened with Mo*Con. Besides the fact that the bulk of the convention involves us continually rolling out food and drinks to facilitate great conversations, it has its own metric about whether that year was a successful con. It’s probably the only convention where people measure it by how well they feel loved. You have to experience it to understand.
*In case you have trouble imagining this, allow me to help with a visual (he posts so many political-career-ending pictures of me, I’m scared to do a Google image search of myself):