My love for Shore Leave has no bounds as it enters its fifth decade of existence. It has grown and prospered, evolving to meet the ever-changing needs and desires of the fans. I love how it has earned and maintained a reputation for being a fun, fan-run show where the media guests are comfortable.
This year, the con is trying out something new, picking upon a trend from around the country. The con will have emcees on stage to helpguide the guests through their presentations and hopefully screening through questionsfrom the floor.
Normally, Howard Weinstein or I have handled guestintroductions and stepped aside. Now, I’ll be doing the bulk of the introductionsbut remaining with the guests t chat them up. What has been learned is thatsome guests are used to this from other venues and are surprised not to havethe same at this show. Others arrive and don’t have much prepared so needsomeone to guide them.
The downside means not being on the many fun-sounding panelsthat fill the rest of the pocket program. I adore the free-wheeling back andforth with my peers but this is the price to pay for helping out the con.
I admit I’m far from shy in this environment. I’ve come to enjoy my interviews with media guests at Baltimore Comic-Con and when pressed into this service, literally at the last minute, for Karen Gillen in 2016, it presaged the con’s next step.
I won’t be doing this entirely on my own. Amy Imhoff, aregular at the con, argued there should be a female presence on stage, so she’llbe kicking things off Friday night and handling a chunk on Sunday. I’ll covermost of Saturday with the exception of headliners Anson Mount and Ethan Peck, withHowie handling this one.
I’ll still be doing my hour Saturday at 10, with GlennHauman and the movie trailers of course. At noon I will be part of the Crazy 8press panel (I had it scheduled around my emcee duties since I wasn’t missingthis). The Bob & Howie remains a Sunday at 10 fixture as well.
Friday night will be huge as the con’s Meet the Pros party debutsover a dozen new book releases, including Thrilling Adventure Yarns. I’llbe in four of the books, details tomorrow, but wow, that’s a lot of newmaterial for the TBR shelf.
This will be an interesting experiment and I hope it worksto everyone’s benefit.