12noon. Panel: "Stargate -- Is This the Answer to No More Trek?" Panelists: Valerie Griswold-Ford (moderator), Anita Allen, Michael A. Burstein, Robert Jeschonek. Given the announcement on Friday that a new Star Trek film is in the works, this panel, like the Trek one on Saturday, took on a different tone. We discussed the question of whether Stargate has become the new Star Trek. One panelist pointed out that Stargate is mostly not available on broadcast television, so it doesn't have the ability to become as popular as Trek. She pointed to a show like Lost as one that might supplant Trek in the minds of the public. The rest of us, however, felt that the style of adventure in Stargate was more similar to that on Trek than any other series currently on television. One thing we all agreed on is that the folks behind the Stargate serieses are obviously having a lot of fun making the show, and it comes across.
1 PM. Panel: "The Short Story: Is It the Beginning of a Career or a Dead End?" Panelists: Michael A. Burstein (moderator), Stuart Jaffe, Elizabeth Massie, Stephen Mark Rainey. The panel was supposed to have been moderated by Danielle Ackley McPhail, but she didn't show up. As is my wont, I took over moderating the panel, and the others on the panel told me afterwards that they liked the job I had done. We discussed the state of the short fiction market in horror, science fiction, and fantasy, among other things, and we agreed that the answer to the question depended on how you define a career. All of us agreed that we enjoy writing short stories and have no plans to stop doing so.
The con lasted for one more hour, during which Nomi and I waited for my younger brother Josh to come pick us up. We spent the time sitting in the lobby, chatting with Dennis McCunney and others. Finally, at 3 PM, Josh arrived, and drove us all to his house. Josh and his wife Rachel moved to Richmond last year along with their daughter and three cats, and back on the Friday of Arisia weekend they had a son. I hadn't met the son yet, so this was a good opportunity to do so. We spent the afternoon and evening hanging out, and we met some neighbors of theirs, Pastor Rob Fox, his wife Krista, and their two children.
The next morning, Josh drove Nomi and me to the Amtrak station on Staples Mill Road, which is the main Amtrak station for Richmond. We barely had time to see it, though, as our 8 AM train was already boarding when we arrived at 7:35 AM. Nomi and I said goodbye to Josh and found seats in business class. We spent the trip watching the DVDs of Stargate SG-1, and we are now completely caught up on season one.
We arrived in Boston on time, and were home before 7 PM.