ICSF The History Book

Picocon 18 - Lloyd's Musings

ta da! the committee!

...PicoCon is the annual convention run by ICSF. It begins, for anyone on the committee, at the unusual (for a student) hour of 7:30am on a cold Saturday in February, and goes on until the official meal afterwards finishes, at about 11pm...

There are normally two basic ideas to Picocon. There is the serious, quiet bit which has things like author talks, a panel, booksellers and the film (traditionally something with lots of swordfights or lasers or explosions in). And then there is the silly bit; we are students and we're not really all that serious all of the time. Last year it was a game of Killer going on all day; this year featured Dalek racing and the Giant Jenga, with an Easter Egg hunt too.

Everything ran okay this year, although I was quite startled to be a surprise guest on the first panel of the day at 11:00pm. I hope that I acquitted myself honourably, and would like to ask the bearded fan who asked so many interesting questions if he would care to join us on a panel next year.

The Destruction of Dodgy Merchandise, which is done for the good of the RAG charities, went off quite well, although the light rain meant that the Pokemon cards couldn't be burnt. I am proud to report that I took part in the synchronised ripping of those damned cards into very small shreds.

I successfully managed to introduce Chris Priest, who talked very well and at some length on his book "The Prestige" and the similarities between writing and performing stage magic.

Juliet McKenna talked sparklingly on the reasons that fantasy books come in long series ... and whether this is a good thing or not!

The quiz was well received, and I'm glad that all the quizmasters including myself escaped alive from the baying hordes of incredibly knowledgeable people; I'd quite forgotten that there had been Children In Need specials of Doctor Who (they weren't very good!)

People liked The Matrix, which was our film; many explosions, so a good film for PicoCon.

Thankfully people enjoyed it and the Union didn't burn down, so we've survived another year.

Lloyd Kilford, propaganda officer, ICSF