Iceland, Finland, and WorldCon 75

I’m back.

I’ve had three full days in Iceland, four flights, and five days of WorldCon in Helsinki, Finland.

I tasted whale, puffin, and reindeer.

I saw two hot springs, three waterfalls, about 8 geysers. (I fell in love with Iceland’s Gullfoss waterfall. It’s now my favorite place on earth.)

I saw where the North American tectonic plate is pulling away from the Eurasian plate at the site of the Thingvellir. I saw artifacts from 1000 BC, archeological sites, and churches. I climbed a mountain.

I took 73 pages of notes over four workshops and seventeen panels. I spent 21 hours in panels and workshops and very likely 20 hours in queues. I dubbed 478 pictures ‘worth keeping’ and 7 videos (see my facebook and Instagram for most of these).

On the four planes, I read three-and-a-half books, took two one-hour naps, and watched one movie.

My biggest takeaways

  • Iceland was amazing, primitive, and beautiful.
  • Helsinki was welcoming, clean, and easy to navigate.
  • WorldCon was popular, had excellent speakers, and was full of new friends.

Over the next month or so, I’ll be sharing my notes from most of the panels. Some were presentations or workshops that I consider proprietary to the speaker and those I’ll limit my remark on.

My 3 Favorite Writing Epiphanies/Quotes:

  1. If you remember all the things that make listening to a book-reading enjoyable and apply it to your writing? It becomes lyrical! I always thought lyrical just wasn’t a type of writing I could do, but when you consider rhythm, repetition, and pace? Evocative lyrical writing can happen, even to me.
  2. I’m a lay person, but I know a decent amount about weaponry and injuries. One of the panels had an excellent break down of weapons and the injuries that sort of weapon creates that just organized it perfectly for my writer-brain with an ‘if X, then Y’ sort of connection.
  3. When Connie Willis was quoted for killing characters that are too uppity (by not cooperating with her plot), George RR Martin gasped, “Killing your characters? How Horrible!
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