Flame Con 2

I'm not a big fan of most comics conventions. I find them loud crowded affairs that are more about selling stuff than anything else. (And considering how much some conventions charge creators for a table...they have to sell a lot not to lose their shirts over a weekend.)

I liked Flame Con, though.

I liked the energy of the place, I liked the people I met, I liked the fact that I ran across so many people and the show felt welcoming of so many kinds of people.

I liked that there were so many cosplayers and I had no idea who a lot of them were. That's the thing, I don't think I should know who people are portraying. I think that fandom should be bigger than me - or any single person.

To put it another way, I think that the healthiest and most vibrant artistic community is one that offers something for everyone and produces a lot of material that not only doesn't interest me, but makes plenty of work I don't like. Being at Flame Con was a reminder that fandom doesn't have to be nasty and toxic, it can be open and inviting and full of possibilities.

The truth is that I'm often lukewarm towards cosplay and fan art and fan fic. That's my own preference. I don't feel the need to bend the stories, I'm happy to go make other similar stories. But there is something about watching people take stories and characters - some of which are not open or inclusive or even kind - and making them their own. Making them into something more. Making them into something better.

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