ConGlomeration was held over the weekend of August 12-14, 2005 at the Clarion Hotel and Convention Center in Louisville, KY. Attendence was down this year, partly because of the economy and the proximity to the Glasgow Worldcon, but at least in large part as a result of the lack of an Author GOH. The concom had lined up Jack Chalker, but he passed away suddenly earlier this year. As a result of the con being so close to the Worldcon, they were not able to arrange another Author GOH, because all the major names had already booked up their schedules. Thus the concom decided to just not have an Author GOH this year, which was probably a big mistake, since it made them look incompetent. It probably would've been better if they'd simply had a memorial service for Jack Chalker as their deceased Author GOH, thus acknowledging their unexpected loss and giving all of us an opportunity to mourn his passing. People understand that bad things happen to good people, and are much more sympathetic about these sorts of misfortunes than apparent haphazardness.
We arrived fairly early on Friday morning and got our merchandise into the dealers' room before the heat got too unbearable. Even so, the air conditioning in the convention center couldn't really keep up with temperatures near the century mark and humidity to match, so it never got really cool inside. And of course every time we went over to the con suite in the hotel, we had to walk through the furnace blast of hot air outside.
We got set up in plenty of time, and even had time to get our personal belongings into our sleeping room and get art onto the art show. Then we got to look around the other dealers' tables before the dealers' room opened to the public. Most of the FOSFAx crowd dropped by, including Joe Major, Tim Lane and Elizabeth Garrett. We got to talk, and Joe dropped off copies of a couple more alternate history novels in progress, which gave me plenty to read.
After the dealers' room closed for the evening, we ate supper. Then we went around to the parties. There were only two parties, the Millennicon party and the Xerps party, so we got back to our sleeping room fairly early for shut-eye.
Saturday we got up and headed over to the con suite for breakfast. However, there'd been a mix-up and the donuts wouldn't be arriving until after we needed to be in the dealers' room. So we decided to head on over, and one of us would come back when they arrived. As it turned out, a box was sent over to the dealers' room for us, so we didn't have to make the trek back.
Sales were reasonably brisk, much better than the disappointing sales on Friday. By Saturday evening we were finally reasonably confident of our ability to pay for our hotel stay out of our sales, rather than having to put it on the credit card.
After the dealers' room closed for the day, we joined up with the FOSFAx crowd for the annual dinner. We went to a really great buffet that includes both Asian and Western food, so we had soemthing for everybody's tastes. We also had some great conversation about writing and marketing one's works.
When we got back to the hotel, we headed around to the various parties. The hobbit hole party was particularly fun, but there were other good ones as well. Then we turned in for the night.
Sunday morning we went to the con suite and had breakfast. Then we got our personal belonging out of our sleeping room before heading over to the dealers' room to open things up. Sales continued to be good, if not spectacular, and we were fairly confident that we'd broken even.
When the dealers' room closed, we were able to get help loading out, so we got done fairly quickly. Thus we were able to make one last visit to the con suite and say some good-byes before hitting the road for home.
Copyright 2012 by Leigh Kimmel
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Last updated October 21, 2012.