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Messages - Firefury Amahira

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41
Saying it wouldn't be fair for out of town folks is just an excuse. Many out of town folks came in earlier than Thursday, myself included (I arrived Wed. and attended Day 0), or were checking in on Thurs. Please don't use us as an excuse to deny more services being offered.
I'm glad you were able to go up earlier. Not everybody can; my group was driving in from Los Angeles on Thursday, arrived at our hotel by 4pm, and badge pickup and swap meet was plenty after the 7 hour drive. I'm sure many others can't afford to go up the extra night. Sadly, short of actual stats on how much of the attendance is the locals vs out-of-towners, we're both talking only in anecdotes.

Regardless of the travel argument, having panels running Thursday would be too much, IMO. I could see opening the video rooms early, provided staff were able to get them set up for it, and certainly something at Stage Zero though. Certainly nothing's stopping unofficial events from organizing and doing stuff on Day Zero. It would really depend on what staff could conceivably do while finishing up the setup; and short of staffers chiming it, that's all pure speculation.

42
Thing about Thursday though is that it's Day Zero; the con has not actually started yet, they're still getting everything set up, the dealers are arriving and setting up their booths, attendees from out of town are most likely driving/flying in, and so on. Putting on any panels on Thursday would be effectively turning a four day con into a five day con, requiring the out of town folks to take an extra day off and arrive on Wednesday if they want to make sure that they won't miss something they want to attend that gets scheduled for Thursday.

Same sort of thing on Friday morning, too; things are still being set up, people are still arriving, and Friday is probably the day that registration is hit the hardest. On the assumption that people are arriving/waiting in reg line (even though Fanime has most thoroughly kicked Linecon's ass,) it makes sense to start the main events later Friday morning/afternoon so that as many attendees as possible will be able to participate.

Plus, and I'm sure any of the Fanime staff can correct me on this, I doubt they are allowed to start setting up everything until Thursday morning most years, and maaaybe Wednesday afternoon if there isn't an event in the con center or the hotels right before them. (That was an issue I believe two years ago? An event right before Fanime was slow in packing up and clearing out, delaying Fanime staff from even starting setup.) For a con this size, they are going to have an enormous amount of equipment to assemble, get into place, wired, tested and debugged. Setup for something on that scale almost never goes completely without a hitch, meaning there's any number of Things That Can (and Will) Go Wrong. Opening any actual convention activities Thursday erases that time cushion they have to iron out the inevitable bugs.

43
Ideas and Suggestions / Re: Volunteers Lagging on Badge check.
« on: May 26, 2015, 06:30:49 PM »
Yeah, I didn't get badge-checked at all on Sunday when I meandered over to the video rooms when I had some down time.

44
Dealers Room / Re: Your Shopping List
« on: May 21, 2015, 12:41:45 AM »
This is my first Fanime and I'm scared I'm going to get overwhelmed with all the things that I want to buy haha

Firefury Amahira has absolutely solid advice above.  Unless it's something you were specifically looking for at a price (or less) you were ready to pay up front, hold your spending in the dealer's hall until you've had a chance to go through once.

Advice I have is to not carry all your cash with you every day.  If you're going to con for all four days (plus Day Zero swap meet), spread out your carried cash accordingly.  This allows you to budget for food if that's part of your total spending and to keep from blowing your bankroll on the first "must have" thing you may see.  This is even more important if you are traveling from out of town.  Each night when I return home I replenish my "carry" amount with the "leave behind" amount before returning to con - it helps me to regulate my budget.  Last year I kept finding that I had a ton more money carrying over and by Sunday was able to buy a pricier item (for me) that I was on the fence about since the start of con.

Most importantly have fun.  The best parts of Fanime don't involve spending beyond the cost of your badge.
Also some really good advice. I did that my first several AXs to mitigate my bright-eyed con-newbie enthusiasm and to minimize the knee-jerk "BUY ALL OF TEH THINGS! \O|" reaction. I've since gotten much better about not blowing my budget in one shot and no longer need to do that, but it definitely helps.

Cash is your friend as you can see money changing hands, where all it takes is a swipe of a credit card. That teaches you pace of buying. In reality, there's not a whole lot of things to buy at Fanime that you can't get online. However, you do get to physically touch and see items, and able to get it right away, so there's that.
Also really good advice. Used to be that most vendors would only take cash, which helped prevent con-goers from plunging into debt; but with the proliferation of smartphones and cheap and easy credit card readers, the temptation to just charge stuff to your credit card can be pretty hard to resist. If you have a credit card, I'd almost suggest not even bringing it into the dealer's hall with you, just so you CAN'T give in to temptation and just charge it. Sticking to a purely cash-only budget plan is probably hands-down the best way to avoid coming home from Fanime to a horrendous credit card bill.

45
Hotel and Facilities / Re: Stocking up on food in your room?
« on: May 17, 2015, 10:42:42 PM »
I want garlic pistachios now.
I also recommend the garlic ice cream, but generally that wouldn't keep very well for the remaining drive time. ;) And your mouth will taste like garlic for the next several hours after consumption.

Thanks for the tip about the farmer's market and stuff! Hafta keep that in mind for my group. :D

46
Dealers Room / Re: Your Shopping List
« on: May 17, 2015, 10:37:42 PM »
This is my first Fanime and I'm scared I'm going to get overwhelmed with all the things that I want to buy haha
My best advice if this is also your first con dealers hall: Don't buy ANYTHING on your first round through it. That first trip through should be purely a scouting run to see what's available, which vendors are selling it, and what prices they're asking for it.

Only once you've seen everything should you start looking at purchases. Prioritize in terms of price, how likely it is to sell out, whether it's from a series you really, REALLY love or is just a current interest, and so on. Things like current manga/DVDs are easy to find for reasonable prices online. Things like pins you can find all over the dealers hall and aren't likely to be cleaned out until late in the con. Certain plushies, figures, or model kits, in comparison, may not be in abundant supply, hard to find or too expensive to get elsewhere, and so may be more likely to sell out quickly.

I would also very strongly caution against gambling on the various "mystery grab bags" that many vendors may offer. Sure, those will almost always say something like "guaranteed $X worth of merch" and the like, but the odds with those are NOT in your favor to get things that you would actually want. The gamble can be awfully tempting, but in my experience it's never one that pays off.

... As for my shopping list this year... I'm not sure what I'm looking for. Most figures that I REALLY want I'll preorder online. I'm still on a hiatus from getting any more Gundam models, especially since I'm looking to perhaps cull my to-build stack and get rid of a ton of older HG and SD kits. I might look for good deals on manga or DVDs, maybe see if there's any really good animation cels anywhere close to my price range for series I like. I usually come home with some new tshirts and some prints from Artist Alley. I suppose I'll just scout around and see if anything grabs my attention. At least with the success of DBZ Kai and the new movies and stuff, there's been a pleasing uptick in DBZ merch to treasure hunt for.

47
General Convention Discussion / Re: Fanime 2015 weather forecast
« on: May 17, 2015, 10:16:47 PM »
I'll happily take chilly nights over blazing heat during the day! :D Also looks like a possible chance of AM showers on Friday from the weather.com forecast.

48
Registration / Re: Do I have to get in line before 8pm?
« on: May 16, 2015, 09:01:44 PM »
The new reg system feels about 40 times faster than the old one. I, along with everyone else, fully expected a multi hour wait last year and was basically dumbfounded by how fast it went. The wait only took as long as it physically took me to walk through the zig-zag queue they had set up. I don't see why they would deviate from what worked so well last year.

To actually answer your question, yes. You will need to be in line before 8pm because staff will close the queue to late arrivals.
^-- Yeah, my group got there around 5 on day zero expecting a long wait in line. Instead we ended up all "... We already have our badges, EFF NO to that swap meet line... so... uh.... we have several extra hours to kill that were originally budgeted for 'wait in prereg line hell'...."

49
Any word yet on the seating capacity for the various panel rooms this year?

50
Hotel and Facilities / Re: Stocking up on food in your room?
« on: May 16, 2015, 08:37:35 PM »
The hotel that my group is staying at off-site has a full kitchen, so we're doing crockpot dinners and sandwiches for lunch. Cliff Bars are pretty good granola bar snackage (not a fan of their protein bars, but great for sweets/fiber with the regular ones.) Another thing to consider (again, check with your specific hotel first!) are larger electric tea kettles that can do bigger quantities of water faster than the dinky hotel coffee pots. That can open up a variety of meal edibles from soups to oatmeal to instant mac-and-cheese.

For those driving up from down south, if you're going up I-5, we usually cut over 152 through Gilroy to pick up the 101, and you can stock up on an assortment of fruits and snackage at the various farm stands along the road. ... Probably should avoid the garlic pistachios though unless you're going to nuke your face with mouthwash a couple of times a day at con. :P

51
Starting to get excited! Still gotta print out the packets for this year. For those who attended last year, I don't think we're making any revisions to the writing guide booklets for this year. Maybe aim for a version 3.5 or 4.0 for 2016 or something.

52
It is possible that Fanime is waiting to make their official announcement on Music Fest guests until all of them are confirmed (if they have two performers as they have in the past).
If they haven't gotten something that important nailed down barely 3 weeks from the con, then Fanime's management is in even worse shape than the haters are saying.

53
Hotel and Facilities / Re: So...Waitlist?
« on: April 16, 2015, 03:56:44 PM »
I come all the way from Indiana and have since 2003. It's really stressful not knowing if I'll get the hotel room I want much less a hotel room at all.  :-\ Don't much like the idea of being roomless during a vacation.
Yeah, my group drives up from Los Angeles. We've pretty much given up entirely on the con hotels in favor of a better deal maybe ten minutes away. I'd need to double check, but I believe this year we've got a 2-bedroom suite with full kitchen for 5 people for roughly $150/night for five nights (We come up Thursday, leave Tuesday.) Split 5 ways, that's maybe $200 per person for the full con counting the hotel and splitting the grocery cost.

Sure, we gotta deal with paying for parking at the con, but with that kitchen and my sister's crockpot, we save a small fortune on food since we can just toss a cooler in the car with sandwiches for lunch, and set the slow cooker up so we have a fresh hot dinner when we get back to the hotel in the evening. Only time we have to eat out is our annual post-Fanime trip to this one hotpot place after the con wraps up Monday.

54
And to no great surprise, we are confirmed for all four panels! First post has been updated accordingly.

Fanfiction 101: Basics- Friday 3-4 PM panels 4
Fanfiction 201: Characters- Saturday 12-1 PM panels 4
Fanfiction 369: How To Write Sex- Sunday 10-11 PM panels 4
Fanfiction 120: Open Lab- Monday 10-11 AM panels 4

55
Panels and Workshops / Fanfiction Workshop Series 2015 (TIMES POSTED!)
« on: February 17, 2015, 06:21:11 PM »
That time of year again, One and I have put in our submissions for our fanfiction writing workshops. If last year is any indication, we'll get all four again this year, though as always, specifics are subject to change.

Fanfiction 101: Friday, 3-4 PM, panels 4 The crash course into story basics. Panel covers basics such as organizing your plot, writing perspectives, types of scenes, avoiding writers' block, and an introduction to fanfiction-specific jargon. Also discusses in brief the legal ramifications of fanfiction and tips for publishing online.

Fanfiction 201: Saturday, 12-1 PM, panels 4 The character focus panel. Covers more advanced material pertaining specifically to characters and character creation. Includes material on writing and developing existing characters, creating antagonists, creating original characters, and how characters interact. Also explains the basics of what "Mary Sue" is, along with recommendations to avoid falling into that trap.

Fanfiction 369 (18+): Sunday, 10-11 PM, panels 4 The "How to write sex" panel. Advanced panel discussing how to write erotica in fanfiction. Panel includes a brief lecture and powerpoint presentation with anatomical drawings detailing sexual anatomy and response, how to apply it to realistic erotica, suggestions on how to apply it to unrealistic erotica (tentacles!), and common sexual myths. Also discusses the use of fetishes and the impact of word choice in erotic stories.

Fanfiction 120: Monday, 10-11 AM, panels 4 Catch-all "Open Lab" discussion for various topics that don't quite fit into the other panels. Possible topics include titles and summary-writing, reviewing and reacting to reviews, and use of foreign language in fanfic. Also open to questions and further discussion on topics from the 101 and 201 panels. This year, I may also use the open lab as a testbed for new material being developed for a potential 2016 "Fanfiction 150: Action Scenes" panel.

Layout for the 101, 201, and 120 panels is part lecture, part back-and-forth Q&A. While One and I have a set list of material to go over for each panel, attendees are welcome to ask questions, and if there's sufficient interest in a specific sub-topic, we're perfectly comfortable adjusting our lecture on the fly to accommodate. Schedules permitting, one or both of us will usually be available to hang out and chat further after the panels are over.

The 369 panel used to be in the same fashion, but due to the sheer volume of questions last year resulting in most of the panel being the sex discussion and less about the writing, One is adjusting the format somewhat; questions will be taken at the end of the panel, rather than in the middle of it. The idea is to get through the anatomy AND the writing sections within the time allotted by Fanime, and the 369 panel does tend to be a bit more of a formal lecture on the subject than the more open back-and-forth of the other panels.

Will update the thread once we've got more info on if/where/when we'll be scheduled!
As always, suggestions ahead of time are welcome. :)

56
Panels and Workshops / Re: Phoenix Wright Game/Panel Anyone?
« on: November 23, 2014, 03:54:55 AM »
Well, it would require a LOT of work to set up. Do you mean like a trivia game show? Or a full blown mock-trial after the style of the games? The trivia game show would be a little easier to run- you'd just need your list of trivia questions, the answers to those questions, and some manner of scoring system if you want to actually keep score.

A mock trial, on the other hand, is going to take a hell of a lot more work and coordination among all the involved actors. If you want to include the investigation phase, it might not even be well suited to a panel format at all. You'd basically need to write out and plan out the entire plot of the court case, the evidence involved, the witnesses, and everything. I've run a (very small-scale) online Ace Attorney roleplay, and even that was an enormous amount of work. Cooking up the trail of logic crumbs in evidence and testimony for the player to follow is even more difficult than it is as the player to find and follow that trail in the games.

I mean, it could work, and would probably be awesome, but basically it would be a pretty hefty commitment to set the thing up.

57
Hotel and Facilities / Re: Attendee housing to open Nov. 10
« on: November 10, 2014, 11:56:31 PM »
Well, my group's staying offsite yet again. We had like 3 people trying and couldn't get through on anything. :-\

58
Hotel and Facilities / Re: Attendee housing to open Nov. 10
« on: November 07, 2014, 03:03:06 AM »
Ur... how's this going to work for those of us who go the panelist route, anyway? Do you need the attendee registration to get the hotel? Or will the hotels be the same sort of madhouse free-for-all as in years past?

59
Ideas and Suggestions / Re: Guests I Want for Fanimecon 2015!!!!!!!!!!
« on: October 21, 2014, 12:41:09 AM »
The guys from Team Four Star! It always sounds like their convention appearances are a blast (especially their 18+ panels) but I haven't been able to go to the cons that they normally go to!

60
If the wedding group was the same one my brother-in-law and I ran into on the elevator in the Fairmont, on the plus side, the bride at least seemed to be pretty chill about all the Fanime weirdness going on, and so hopefully was not too bothered by the "OTP!" thing. Doesn't excuse such hideously rude behavior, but at least hopefully it didn't put a damper on the bride and groom's big day.

It did seem like the sheer volume of Homestuck cosplay was down from last year, and I personally didn't really encounter much of any of the really rude and obnoxious behavior that helped bring the hate in 2013. Though apparently there was still some. I think at least, like every other costume fad, it's beginning to pass. And I guess with the source material on hiatus/slated to conclude in the not-too-distant future, the fandom will start to settle down once all the casual fans drift off and the remaining less-casual fans also start devoting more energy to other interests.

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