When you’ve gone to enough conventions, you’re bound to have an experience that just doesn’t live up to the hype. Maybe you don’t know anyone or no one is asking for commissions. Then to make matters worse, everyone around you is gushing about the ‘GREATEST CON EVAR’ while you’re sitting alone drowning your sorrows in a cold pizza from the cafe. It’s the sad reality, and sometimes can’t be helped. But often it can!
We here at ProudToBeAFurry.org prefer to look on the bright side of things, but sometimes looking for the positive first involves dealing with the negative. So over a few articles, we will be going over conventions that can go bad– not just attending, but also disappointing experiences that artists and dealers might have. But we’ll also tell you how to avoid them, and what you can do to improve your con-going experience!
If you’ve spent any period of time in the furry fandom, you’ve probably heard people talk about their fursona… or show off the art of their fursona, or pictures of the fursuit of their fursona, or plushies, or posters or… You get the idea. Fursonas are kind of a big deal.
But what are they about, and how do you get one? Do you even need one? And more importantly, what might yours be?
Pay attention, because there may be a quiz at the end!
When many people think of furry conventions, they think of fursuits with their flashy colors, animal faces, and lots and lots of fur! Whether toony or realistic, fursuits are the most noticeable and vibrant aspects of furry conventions. They are walking, talking (or squeaking) art, most of which costs upwards of thousands of dollars. Plus, they’re downright adorable.
But it’s not all fun and games for fursuiters. Between the heat of all the fake fur, poor vision and walking around wearing basically clown shoes for feet, things can quickly go bad for them. This is why it’s up to us non-suiters to be aware of fursuiters and know how to act around them. Here are just a few tips to help you get ahead in interacting with fursuiters.
When it comes to packing for conventions there are usually two mindsets: the people who started packing two months ago and the people who start packing two hours before their flight. With only weeks before the convention, no matter which you are it’s time to start thinking about what you’re going to take with you.
Some of these are going to be basics that you should take for any long term trip away from home; others convention specific items. Since this is a furry blog, there will be some furry specific items that you should consider taking as well.
And I don’t mean the cat. Take the cat out of the luggage.
Anthrocon’s panel and events schedule has been released, so what better time to start thinking about what you’ll be doing at conventions. Some people come to conventions just to hang with friends, but for most of us there are a lot of panels and other events to do and see. It can be a bit overwhelming, especially when there are multiple events that you want to be at happening at the same time. Time travel is not permitted at conventions, so you’ll need to learn how to schedule yourself.
“Con crud.” You’ve probably heard of it, and if you’re not careful you’re probably going to get it. People love to share hugs at conventions, but they also love to share their germs too. That door handle you’re going to touch? At least two hundred other people probably also touched it in the past hour and any ten of them could be sick.
You need to take care of your body while you’re busy having fun. It can get very easy to skip meals, skip showers and even skip sleeping altogether. If you’re not careful, you might end up with a very bad post-con. Continue reading “Road to Anthrocon: Staying Healthy”
Now that we’ve gone over the basics of getting prepared to physically go to a convention, it’s time to mentally prepare ourselves. For some of you this might be the first time that you’re going far away from home. Or it may be the first time in a social setting with many people of varied backgrounds and beliefs. Furries are a vibrant and colorful fandom, and when we get together at conventions we can really let our true selves show. For some that can be a bit overwhelming.
My first convention was a bit of a culture shock, but yours doesn’t have to be. These are just a few of the things that you may see and experience at the convention. None of these are intended to spook you, only to give you a heads-up of what to expect.
Hotel room? Check. Registered for your convention of choice? Check. Now how are you going to get there? You could walk, but it might take a while. Don’t even bother with hitchhiking; that never ends well even if you’ve brought your towel.
If you are within walking distance to the convention or live nearby, then you probably have this part already handled. But for the rest of us, conventions require a serious hike. Many people travel not just across country to go to popular conventions, but across the globe. Whether by road, rail or sky, each method of travel to the convention has its pros, cons and pitfalls.
Even before you plan for what panels to go to, who you’re going to see, or figure out where the bar is, one of the first things that you need to do when going to a convention is to figure out where the heck you are going to room.
Three years ago I up and decided to go to Anthrocon for the first time just a whole two weeks before the actual convention. Not the dumbest decision of my life, but I was totally unprepared! If it wasn’t for friends bailing me out and offering me a room, I would’ve been completely in over my head. But I had a blast anyway and since then I’ve been to Anthrocon again and other conventions as well.
While I’m still new compared to many who have been going to conventions for years, I’ve had to learn a lot in a short period of time. As I prepare for my third Anthrocon, I want to pass on what I’ve been learning to convention goers new and old.