And I’m back from the H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival and my trip to Portland. It was, in short, breathtaking, at least once literally, as I am apparently very, very allergic to something that was up near Pittock Mansion. I took a few pictures, which I’ll probably post, at least to Facebook and environs, once I get around to sorting through them on my phone. I’m still getting used to this whole robot phone thing.

While there I got to meet a lot of awesome people, had a lot of awesome conversations, and probably missed at least as many that I’d liked to have met/had. I saw a few movies, though not as many as I’d expected. Nightbreed: The Cabal Cut was worth the price of a plane ticket all by itself, though some of the rough footage was, well, really rough. Beyond that, a few shorts, and a re-viewing of Prince of Darkness, the only film I caught was The Thing on the Doorstep, which was a really quite good retelling, though there was too much fuzzy golden light for my aesthetic preferences.

I bought a lot of exciting books, and saw a lot of interesting sights. Oregon still has my heart, as it has ever since I first visited, and I renew my vow that I’ll live there someday, by hook or by crook, a vow that’s more poignant now than ever as I’ve met a lot of great people who call Portland and its surroundings home. During my trip, I was sad to learn that Ray Harryhausen had shuffled off this mortal coil, leaving behind a world that is just a little less wondrous for his absence. The night of my arrival back I hoisted a symbolic drink to this honor, and watched It Came from Beneath the Sea, which is about as close to a middle ground between Lovecraft and Harryhausen as I’m likely to find. Harryhausen was one of the greats, maybe the finest monster maker who ever lived, and his legacy has meant a lot to me. I’ll probably post a little more about him in the next few days. In the meantime, I think I might need to backlog my To Be Read pile a little bit and haul out my copy of The Art of Ray Harryhausen one more time.

I’m not even going to try for a list of all the people I met at the HPLFF. You know who you are, and to every single one of you, thank you for your time, and I wish there’d been more of it. Getting back into the swing of things has been hard, but just before I sat down to write this post I wrapped up revisions on an 8,600 word novelette that I’d written before I left, so that’s got me feeling a little bit better about spending too much time watching Community and not getting a whole lot else done.

This is going to be a wild month, with Spectrum and ConQuest both looming on the horizon, and while my presence at both will be limited-to-nonexistent, if you’re coming into town for either don’t hesitate to let me know. I’ll be at Spectrum for at least a day to stalk Gary Gianni like a weirdo, and we’ll take it from there.

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