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life, tv

My First Fandom Con(vention) – BiteCon LA 2014

bitecon logoAs everyone knows, I am a giant tv nerd. I’ve been watching shows pretty obsessively regularly since I was a kid and have considered myself a devoted fan of many shows over the years. Despite this, I didn’t really hear about fandom cons (conventions) until the Firefly fandom. (Of course, the Firefly fandom is a thing unto itself, as even H’wood knows. Talk about die hard.) Awesome, and sometimes ugly, I kept hearing things from my friends that went to this con or that con for various shows and the multi-fandom cons like Comic-Con. For various reasons though, I could never manage to actually get to one.

This year, that changed. Four very awesome friends of mine pitched in and bought me a ticket to BiteCon, which is a completely fan-run Teen Wolf con here in LA. Everything coincided from my home location being close to the con location, to unexpected time off from work, to these awesome women paving the way so there was no way I could miss this one!

So last Thursday, my girls got in from GERMANY (yeah, and I had trouble getting to cons? lol!) and on Friday, an awesome local friend drove me to the hotel as getting there via public transport just was not going to happen. I registered, got my lovely tee, wristband, badge and we were off to the first of many panels.

There is so much that was awesome about the panels we saw that my fingers would fall off if I tried to write out all of it. Standout moments:

Eaddy is the most gracious actress I’ve almost met. She was absolutely incredible with all us fans.

Orny Adams is freakin’ hilarious and I can’t wait to catch his stand-up somewhere local.

Eaddy and Orny did an improv! That was sooo awesome!

Tyler Posey has insane levels of energy and I think I would have a heart attack trying to keep up lol! He’s also about the nicest guy around from everything I saw – and what his colleagues said -though we didn’t actually meet. (Next time? :o))

Seth Gilliam was just lovely, taking the time to talk to us while randomly walking around the pool area. He’s also incredibly competitive when it comes to trivia games.

Actually, they were all hysterically funny in their competitiveness at the Teen Wolf “face off” trivia game. Melissa, Seth, and Linden were on one team (Team name went something like: We go to bed by 9pm and can’t watch the show since it’s on at 10pm) and Sinqua, Arden, and Keahu (Team name: chocolate milkyway galaxies? Something involving those words anyhow teehee!) were on the other with Tyler moderating. I haven’t laughed that hard in quite a while.

There was also a panel about wolves vs. werewolves with Jeff Davis (the creator/showrunner) and David Mizejewski from the National Wildlife Foundation that featured an actual wolf. It was absolutely incredible.

Max and Charlie Carver’s twin stories were so cute, even with the brotherly vengeance mischief apparently going on when they were younger… and currently. ;o)

The “badass ladies” panel with Felisha and Haley was so damn cool! (Not that I have a liking for badass women or anything…)

The special effects panel was so much fun! Those who know me, know how much I love horror and to hear these guys talk about behind the scene things like that was me in a candy store but without those evil calories. ;o)  (mea culpa, I’m still trying to track down all the names of the men who were on this panel, will update the tags once I do!) 

Personally speaking, the writer panel was extra cool since I’m aiming for that job myself one day (very) soon. I was disappointed that we didn’t get to hear Jeff, but I gather there was some kind of miscommunication, which of course happens. What was truly awesome was that out of four writers (plus the writers assistant), two were women! And all but one had ‘come up through the ranks’ so to speak. They’d had some kind of position on the show before funneling to the writers room. Gives me hope. 😀 I really appreciate the very fine line they had to tread between sharing with the fans and not giving away spoilers. And they were very patient and thoughtful with the questions about creative decisions made in the last season, too. The explanations made sense to me, especially the, “I really just love to kill people,” one. (I’m paraphrasing, but it was almost those exact words lol!)  I can absolutely relate to that. They are my kinda peeps. ;o) As always, it’s really cool to get in the heads of other writers. I love that they said Jeff never likes to repeat things, too; as a fan, that means they’re going to find new ways to amaze us and as a writer, I’m looking forward to seeing what kinds of variations on story they come up with. (another mea culpa, I’m still trying to track down all the names of the writers who attended. I will add them to the tags when I get them!)

Another thing that was really cool as a writer was to hear what kind of backstories the actors themselves came up with for their characters. Their takes on the backgrounds and motivations were really interesting. And the stories they had about Jeff shooting them down here and there were really funny.

I’m glad that this was my first con for a few reasons. First, it was smallish (250-300?) so I wasn’t overwhelmed with mad crowds like I’ve heard happens at other conventions. Second, it was exceptionally well organized from the schedule clarity, to the lining up for questions during panels to, well, everything! The fact that it was fan-run and it was their first time organizing a con? It just blows my mind. Third, the cast and crew were just so incredibly good-natured and approachable interacting with the fans (Eaddy! OMG!). The overall inclusiveness and generosity from everyone is something that I will definitely treasure.

I can’t wait to go to BiteCon LA 2015!

PS – I took pictures but with my crappy phone, so next year I bring a real camera! I’ve uploaded the best of the lot here, but they’re still pretty sucky.

Tyler Posey with Frankie the wolf

Tyler Posey with Frankie the wolf

Eaddy Mays

Eaddy Mays

Eaddy Mays and Orny Adams

Eaddy Mays and Orny Adams

Max and Charlie Carver

Max and Charlie Carver

BiteCon staff/organizers

BiteCon staff/organizers

Tyler Posey, Arden Cho, Sinqua Walls, Keahu Kahuanui

Tyler Posey, Arden Cho, Sinqua Walls, Keahu Kahuanui

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About Nancy M. Griffis

Author and screenwriter who loves scifi/action/adventure/urban fantasy genres. I have two published novels, Mind Games and Eternal Investigations, as well as a short story published for charity called "Home Fires Burning." All are available through amazon.com and barnesandnobles.com.

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Nancy at the Tim Burton exhibit in L.A.

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