Fancy yourself a writer? Go to writing events.
Ottawa-based writer, by chance? Come out to the ChiSeries.
I’ve raved about this quarterly event enough times that anyone who reads this blog (so all five of you, right?) should know how much fun I have there. This past Tuesday, though, was a special event by the ChiSeries organizers: the Holiday Extravaganza. Instead of the usual three-reader format, Tuesday was a much lighter affair, with fun readings by some of the attendees and a lot of vendors on hand, offering books and other wares for everyone’s holiday-shopping needs.
Simply put, it was a blast. Here are some highlights:
- The organizers posted an opening to a new holiday story, featuring Cliff Cringle, nephew of the famed Santa Claus, and a bunch of lazy elves who had let the North Pole go to hell. Brave souls were invited up to the mike to continue the story, improv-style (yours truly included). Very quickly we ended up with a tale involving grenade-launcher-toting platypuses, Stephen Harper, Dick Cheney, and Jayne Cobb from Firefly. Somehow we found a resolution to the tale, but not before Mr. Jay Odjick totally waffled me … and then I turned around and did the same thing to Hayden Trenholm (sorry, Hayden).
- As a group, we shouted out suggestions for a series of holiday-themed Mad Libs, which were read throughout the evening by Jay, Hayden, Derek Kunsken, and Robin Riopelle. For the full text of these creations, check out Nicole Lavigne’s blog.
- Apparently I have the longest arms in the ChiSeries community, which meant that I was everyone’s favorite person – the best value for raffle tickets was the wingspan of the tallest person around. It’s nice to be wanted 🙂
- The vendors on hand were a combined blessing and curse. I gave myself strict instructions not to buy a lot of stuff, and promptly ignored said instructions. Here’s the haul (which admittedly includes some raffle winnings):
It’s always a blast hanging out with the Ottawa SF community. I’m coming to rely on these events as a recharge to keep the creative juices flowing – not just because they’re writing events, but because the people involved are awesome. I know I say this every time, but if you’re a science fiction, fantasy or horror writer in Ottawa, come out to ChiSeries. If you’re nervous about meeting new people, you will not find a more welcoming and inclusive group. And now that I’ve come out of my shell, you can always come talk to me. I don’t bite – unlike some of the others 🙂 I’m looking at you, Marie.
Oh, and definitely come to next year’s Holiday Extravaganza if you have long arms.