East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

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The WorldCon Paradox

Back in 2007 I was supposed to attend the WorldCon – the annual World Science Fiction Convention – in Japan. I was all set, I had saved my money and I was planning on meeting old and new friends and have a wonderful time. Then my mother died, and everything changed.
In recent years, the Convention was hosted in Europe – last year in Ireland – but my finances were not up to the challenge.
And this year?
The 2020 WorldCon will take place in New Zealand – exactly on the other side of the world to where I live – and to the roughly 250 euro of membership fee, I should add about 2000 euro of air fare and food & lodging. Unthinkable.

But then the Coronavirus happened, and now the organizers of the New Zealand convention have announced they’ll move everything online – the 2020 WorldCon will take place in cyberspace.
Which means no travel ticket, no food & lodging, and a reduced membership fee. And so here’s the paradox: I might attend my first WorldCon in the year when it happens on the other side of the world.

I am waiting for the announcement of the new rates and details – but I’ve said jokingly with some friends that we should pitch a few panels and give a few presentations. And I am joking only up to a point. It would be fun to be able and do it.

Meanwhile, I’ve set up yet another piggy bank, to pay for this strange cyberspace adventure.
Let’s see what happens.

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Writing for a solid target

Targets are important.
Important in general, and important when you are writing.
The basic target for a writer is finishing the damn story, of course*.
But there are other targets – word counts, word per day, are classics.
And then, paying the bills is another extremely good target – highly motivational.

LONCON3_logo_270wRight now, I’m setting myself a new target – an important one, one for which I feel strongly.
I plan to write and publish enough stories (mostly in English) and non-fiction (mostly in Italian), so that I can put together enough money to go to London in August 2014, and meet my friends for the 2014 WorldCon, also known as Loncon 3.
I have less than 12 months, but I will make it.

I was supposed to go to the Worldcon in Japan, in 2009, but the sudden death of my mother forced me to change my plans.
And this year I had planned a trip to Texas for the 2013 Worldcon – but unfinished business with my university, the horrid state of my country’s finance and the worse state of my own finances forced me to drop that idea too.

Now, I want to go to Loncon 3.
And I think it would be just great to pay for the trip with my writing.

It’s a big target, and one that is very dear to my heart.
But I’ll put everything in to make it.
And now it’s public, I can’t back down.

*There’s two kind of writers: those that finish the story, and those that do not.