Lexicon 2017


noun, plural lexica [lek-si-kuh], lexicons.
  1. a wordbook or dictionary, especially of Greek, Latin, or Hebrew.
  2. the vocabulary of a particular language, field, social class, person,etc.
  3. inventory or record:
    unparalleled in the lexicon of human relations.
  4. Linguistics.
    • a) the total inventory of morphemes in a given language.
    • b) the inventory of base morphemes plus their combinations with derivational morphemes.

Though I’m not technically a SpecFic writer I somehow ended up at a SpecFic convention over Queens Birthday weekend. I spent most of my time anti-socially reading Nights End, the final in Richard Parry’s Night’s Champion series*, as it was released on Friday (you can read my review here).

The venue for Lexicon could not have been more perfect. The Suncourt Hotel was very accommodating (they let people bring rats!), could house most of the attendees and the bar/restaurant was right next to the convention rooms…not that anyone decided to forgo a talk for a coffee or beer at all. Also Taupo is ridiculously beautiful. I’m glad I had a day before the convention to enjoy it.

I managed to sunbathe on the second day of winter and even get a little writing done.

Other attendees read a lot more widely than I do so I got super excited when books or authors I was familiar with were mentioned. During the Crossing Genres panel I realised I know none of the rules of genre. During the Book Covers talk I realised I probably draw more attention to myself when I don’t want attention (my pretty, pretty book cover was mentioned – more on this later). During Publicity for Authors I realised at some point I’m going to pay someone to do marketing for me rather than do it myself.

During the Out of the Background panel Cassie Hart talked about how stage of life can influence your writing. How motherhood and pregnant women kept turning up in her writing. I recently realised that, although I lack a genre, themes appear in my writing. A central female character dealing with loss, trying to be independent at a transition point in their life.

There was a lovely community feeling; speakers were also attendees and therefore very approachable. Highlights of the weekend include; the multi-coloured “con hair” of many participants (and my jealousy of said hair), a very bad microphone which speakers had to get intimate with to be heard, but most of all, above all things was Seanan McGuire.

I hadn’t heard of Guest of Honour Seanan McGuire before this and even if I never read anything she’s published I’m a fan. She can speak eloquently on almost any topic, she’s generous, kind, funny, intelligent, widely read and multi talented.

I drove home with the co-chairs of the convention asking them what they’ll do differently when they never do it again and dreaming about how much I’d love an Austen convention just like it.

*The second in the series, Nights Fall, was shortlisted for an SJV. Richard was also shortlisted for best new talent.