Saturday, February 23, 2013

AnachroCon: My Experience

Today I went down to Atlanta for day two of the AnachroCon, which bills itself as "the place in the Southern United States for Steampunk, History, Alternate History, Science, Music, Classic Sci-Fi Literature and the most amazing costuming you’ve ever seen!" I didn't read that tag line particularly carefully, so I stuck out like a sore thumb in my grey sweatshirt, jeans and sneakers against a crowd of steampunk enthusiasts. It seemed as if a section of 18th century London's well-to-do had time-travelled to a Marriott. Men sporting waist coats and top hats milled with women crammed into corsets and hoop skirts while a highlander in a kilt played a harp and sang.

I didn't see anything in the program about actual alternate history, though I expect the "alternate history" cross-pollinated with science fiction or fantasy which seems to sell better was in evidence somewhere. Actually, if you consider Steampunk merely a type of alternate history, and many do, that seemed to be a unifying theme of the convention. And more power to the people who like that genre or aesthetic or whatever you want to call Steampunk, but I have never been able to enjoy it the way I sink my teeth into more pure "historical what-ifs."

I suppose I did not stay long enough to get a really good feel for the convention. I did, however, get the chance to meet Matthew Quinn, a long time member of and author of the short-story Coil Gun. He's a great guy who gave me some pointers on both this blog and the Alternate History Podcast, the first episode of which will be out soon. So check out his stuff; he will be guest-blogging here and I may reciprocate on his blog which is also in the sidebar under the new "favorites" blog roll.


  1. Glad to hear two alternate historians are networking. There aren't many of us out there after all. Keep me posted about the AH Podcast I would love to help promote it...and participate if you will have me.

    1. The first episode will be recorded tomorrow; I hope to have it released within a week. I'm so happy you're interested in it! I would love to have you on, as a panelist and also as an interview subject if that's ok.

      But yeah, I'll shoot you an email when it comes out.