Monday, June 4, 2012

Tales From the Crypticon by Scott M. Baker

[This was originally posted on my own blog on Friday, 1 June]

It has taken me almost a week to get caught up, so I wanted to take a few minutes to post about last weekend's Crypticon convention in Seattle. 

It was a tedious trip out to the west coast.  I left Washington D.C. at 7:00 AM, flew five hours out to Long Beach where I then suffered through a five-hour layover (and for anyone who has ever been through Long Beach Airport, you know how little there is to do there), and then completed the final two-hour jaunt up to Seattle.  I checked into my hotel after nearly fifteen hours on the road, arriving about an hour before my first panel session.  But the seemingly endless trip was definitely worth it. 

I sat on the usual zombie panels.  "Are You Ready for the Zombie Apocalypse?  Do You Plan To Survive?" is always fun because I love to compare bug out versus hunker down strategies, and I always pick up some good survivalist tips.  (And thanks to Tony Favile for all his great advice.)  "Zombies: Why the Fuck Won't They Die?" took a good-natured look at why the living dead not only have remained so popular in our culture but have not witnessed several break away subgenres as vampire fiction has.  And there were numerous groans of protest when I mentioned the concept of sparkling zombies.  (I promise that is not the plot of my next novel.)  And it was an honor and a thrill to join my fellow authors at the Permuted Press Q&A session on Friday night and the joint reading on Sunday.

Me and Ricou Browning
One of my favorite panels was "Universal Monsters and Their Forms Through the Years."  That was partly because I was enthralled by the Universal monsters as a kid.  I watched them so many times I knew every scene in every movie by heart.  I even had the entire Aurora Universal monster collection and owned my favorite films in the twelve-minute-long Super 8mm versions distributed by Castle Films.  The other reason this was one of my favorite panels was because it prompted me to go meet Ricou Browning, the actor who played the Gill Man in all three Creature from the Black Lagoon movies and the only surviving actor to portray one of Universal's iconic monsters.  (For more on my meeting with Mr. Browning, please check out my blog posting Enjoying the Apocalypse: The Permuted Underground.)

By the far the best part of the entire convention was sitting at the Permuted Press table.  It's a great publishing house, and I'm excited to be a part of the Permuted family. Thanks to Jacob Kier, the publisher, for inviting me.  Many thanks to the other Permuted authors who made me feel so welcome:  D.L. Snell, Tony Favile, Craig DiLouie, Timothy W. Long, Gareth Wood, Peter Clines, Eloise J. Knapp, and Jessica Miegs.  And many thanks to Tony for introducing me to "sweetened Coke." 

I came home exhausted (my flight back into Washington landed at 4:40 AM), but had an epic time and am looking forward to attending in 2013.  The next stop for me on the convention circuit is Infect Scranton 21-23 September where several Permuted Press authors will also have a table.  Hope to see you there. 

The Permuted gang at Crypticon. From left to right: D.L. Snell, Tony Faville, me, Craig DiLouie, Timothy Long, Gareth Wood, Peter Clines, Eloise J. Knapps (holding the assault rifle), Jacob Kier, and Jessica Miegs.


  1. Hello, Permuted authors.

    Congratulations on all your success and good luck to you in the future.

    Great pictures!

  2. Credit where it's due: that's a GREAT title for your post.

  3. Dude, did I steal that from you? If so, sorry.